Ben Blake received his party’s backing to run for a third term as mayor during a Democratic Town Committee meeting last Thursday night at Milford City Hall.
The party endorsed Brendan Casey to run for City Clerk, and also put forth a slate of candidates to run for seats on the Board of Aldermen, Board of Education and Planning and Zoning Board.
In accepting the nomination, Blake thanked the people who have supported him during his two terms.
“Over the past four years we’ve been through much together,” Blake said. “We’ve come together as a community to face multiple challenges as well as tragedies, and we’ve celebrated achievements and successes.”
Blake talked about changes made over the past four years, including new platforms and processes. He said despite changes, Milford has maintained its New England charm and character.
As he said two years ago, Blake said, “The position of Milford’s mayor is without doubt the best job on Earth.”
Casey, who has been active in the Woodmont community, Little League Baseball and other efforts, accepted the nomination to run for city clerk.
“So much of our daily lives revolve around the city clerk’s office,” Casey said. “As city clerk, I promise to run a friendly, efficient and open office. However, what I feel most able to promise is a reevaluation of our public record process with an all-out effort to computerize all information for the convenience of homeowners and taxpayers. This makes sense. It’s just good government.”
Casey was nominated for the run by former Mayor Alberta Jagoe, and seconded by former state Rep. James Maroney and DTC member Richard Carey.
Jagoe said Casey continues a long family tradition of service to Milford. In addition to the Casey family, he is related to the late Charles Bristol, who was his father-in-law. Charles Bristol died just two weeks before the nomination meeting, and Town Committee Chairman Rich Smith said he knew Bristol wanted to be there to hear his son-in-law accept the nomination.
Maroney said Casey has some of the same qualities that Bristol had: Intelligence and passion.
Carey, offering his second to the nomination for Casey, said he “never met anyone who always has such a positive outlook on everything.”
Rich Smith nominated Blake to run for mayor a third time. Smith said accomplishments are one thing, but he focused on Blake’s character in facing difficult situations during his two terms. Those include major storms, like Hurricane Sandy and Storm Nemo; tragedies in Sandy Hook and right here in Milford when Jonathan Law teenager Maren Sanchez was murdered.
Smith said Blake faced “unprecedented challenges” and rallied the city so that neighbors helped neighbors.
Benjamin Gettinger, chairman of the Planning and Zoning Board, seconded the nomination, as did City Attorney Jonathan Berchem.
Gettinger said Blake always does what is in the best interest of the city.
Berchem said he and the mayor politely disagree on issues sometimes, but he said they respect each other’s opinions.
“It’s an honor to watch him work so tirelessly on behalf of the city,” Berchem said. “Everything Ben does day in and day out is for the city.”
Following is the DTC slate of candidates.
Mayor: Ben Blake
City Clerk: Brendan Casey
Board of Aldermen: Greta Stanford and Ellen Beatty
Board of Education: Ann Grosso Arnold and Patrick Pacelli
P&Z: Jason Zammiello
Board of Aldermen: Janet Golden and Nick Veccharelli
Board of Education: Susan Glennon and Jennifer Federico
P&Z: Sarah Ferrante
Board of Aldermen: Frank Smith and Martin Hardiman
Board of Education: C. Robert Satti and Sonia Banon
Board of Aldermen: Phil Vetro and Susan Shaw
Board of Education: Earl Whiskeyman and Jess Gregory
P&Z: Richard Lutz
Board of Aldermen: Bryan Anderson and Dora Kubek
Board of Education: Claire Casey and Phil Zetye
P&Z: Charles Montalbano