By Ed Harris
The Southington Democrats have announced their slate for November, a mixture of old and new faces.
“I’m excited with the candidates we’re presenting,” said Robert Berkmoes, a member of the nominating committee.
For Town Council the Democrats are running incumbents John Barry, Dawn Miceli and Christopher Palmieri. They are joined by Dennis Conroy, who served on the Council for a term in the late 1970s, Chris Kelley and David Rinaldi.
Palmieri, who has served as minority leader for the last two years, said it is important for the Democrats to win back the Town Council, adding that the majority party has control over appointments to the non-elected boards in town.
“It’s time to get good Democrats back in office,” he said.
Rinaldi may be a somewhat new name to Southington politics, but the Council candidate has a long family history of public service. His father, the late Donald M. Rinaldi, served as a state senator in the 16th district for two years and David has previously served ten years as an alderman in Waterbury. He moved to Southington ten years ago.
“It’s time to get back in,” he said. “Make myself part of the community.”
Rinaldi said the education system in town is what drew him to Southington. He said he would like to keep the schools running at a high level, grow the town’s manufacturing base and to make the town more affordable for people, especially young adults returning from college.
For the Board of Finance, the Democrats are running incumbent Sandra Feld with Kevin Beaudoin, John Moise and Edward Rosenblatt. Both Moise and Beaudoin served previously on the Board of Finance and lost bids to the Town Council two years ago.
“I’ve been sitting there for two years,” said Moise, who served on the tax board previously for six years, with two as chairman. “What I’ve seen over the last couple of years is continued bonding. Putting off what we could pay for today [until] tomorrow.”
Moise also said that the Board of Finance had lost its teeth, allowing the Town Council to bypassed the board several times.
For the Board of Education, the Democrats are running incumbents David Derynoski, Patricia Johnson and Zaya Oshana. They are joined by Jerry Belanger, Gail Doerfler and William Lutz.
For the Planning and Zoning Commission, incumbent James Sinclair is running with alternates Susan Locks and Ryan Rogers. They are joined by Anthony Cervoni Jr.
For the Board of Water Commissioners, incumbents Thomas Murphy and Angelina Santa Maria are running with Rudolph Cabata.
Sandra L. Brunoli is the candidate for town clerk. Current town clerk Leslie Cotton will retire in January, after serving for 20 years.
“I know [this] will be a winning slate this fall,” said Southington Democratic Town Committee Chairman Elaine Bedard.