Meet the candidate: Jesse Gnazzo

Jesse Gnazzo

Democrat

Challenger

What do you feel have been successes in economic development for Plainville over the past two years—or what have been its failures? Explain.

Plainville has had some success with supporting local small businesses. Places like Rebel Dog Coffee, JV’s Taproom, Crossfit Plainville, U-Haul and the future Plainville Funeral Home are the type of businesses we need in Plainville. All of us who live in Plainville need to be supporting our local businesses. Unfortunately, there are still too many vacancies in the downtown area, and too many vacant industrial areas. Connecticut’s economy impinges on every community’s ability to attract large employers, especially manufacturers. All of us in Plainville need to continue to support the business owners that have become a part of our community. Plainville needs to prove to other small business people that Plainville is where small businesses are welcome.

There has been a lot of discussion over the past year about Connecticut’s current economic situation, and the proposed reductions in municipal aid. If elected, how would you ensure that taxpayers get the best bang for their buck, given the uncertainty in state revenue?

The only way to handle a budget crisis is with a true bi-partisan effort to analyze our current services, the funds we will have available and how to best allocate those funds. I don’t believe the answer is putting the burden of revenue uncertainty on the backs of property owners. Plainville has been through difficult budget years in the past. The only way to get through those times is by communicating with the people of Plainville about what it is that all of us most value. Is it quality education for our children, the safety that our police and fire departments provide, park improvements, road projects, or any other service that is available to Plainville residents? Once the Town Council knows what is most important to Plainville, decisions can be made to allocate the funds we know will be available.

From infrastructure and park improvements to school building projects to closing the town’s gap in the Farmington Canal Heritage Trail, the town has pursued a variety of projects over the past two years. Do you feel that Plainville is a community of progress—or a community that remains stagnant when trying to move ahead? Explain your answer.

In my opinion, Plainville (like many Connecticut communities) is cautiously progressive. The people of Plainville have always supported school projects and most infrastructure and park improvements. However, issues like the Farmington Canal Heritage Trail gap closure or the location of the dog park seem to have more problems in receiving approval from residents. I am in favor of a dog park and closing the trail gap. I still feel I need more information on each project to offer a solution to either. These types of projects always are met with some resistance. There is no doubt that some residents will be impacted by the approval of either. We must do our best to find a solution that limits the impact and then be grateful and acknowledge the selfless individuals that live with the results of those difficult decisions. The sacrifice of those residents inconvenienced by construction and then an increased number of people in their neighborhood is what will make Plainville an even stronger community than it is already.