Local Election Day

It is Election Day. Be among those who take civic responsibility seriously. Get to the polls and vote.

Municipal elections, held in odd-numbered years in Connecticut, are notorious for attracting the poorest turnouts. That is unfortunate. The people elected today will make important policy decisions that will have signicant impacts. Councilors, selectmen and finance boards will enact budgets and set the property tax rate home owners, landlords and businesses must pay. Boards of education will set policy priorities for local school districts. Those elected to land-use agencies will interpret planning, zoning and wetlands regulations for building projects big and small.

These elections do matter. It is disheartening to see so many so easily dismiss their privilege to participate in the free election of their local leaders.

On the positive side, thousands will participate, including some new voters. For the first time today Connecticut will allow Election-Day registration. While there are probably few good reasons for waiting until the day of an election to register, if the goal is to increase participation in the electoral process, and it should be, this is a welcomed development.

In recent weeks, The Day has offered its editorial endorsements in a few key local races. The editorial board based its recommendations on meetings with the candidates, their performance in debates, policy priorities and backgrounds.

To review:

For New London Board of Education The Day endorses Democrats Aracelis Vazquez Haye, Robert Funk, Reona Dyess, Scott Garbini, and Margaret Mary Curtin; Republican Jason Catala; and Green Party candidate Mirna Martinez.

For New London City Council we endorse Democrats Michael Passero, Erica Richardson, Michael Tranchida and Efrain Dominguez; Republicans Keith J. Robbins and Martin T. Olsen; and Green Ronna Stuller.

For Norwich mayor, The Day endorses incumbent Republican Peter Nystrom; for Stonington first selectwoman, Republican challenger Glee McAnanly; for Preston first selectman, incumbent Republican Robert Congdon; and for North Stonington first selectman, Republican petitioning candidate Robert L. Testa.

That's our choices, now make yours. Get out and vote.

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