Paula Smith says changes need to be made

by Paula Smith
Republican Mayoral Candidate

Growing up at Smith’s 17 Acre Park and Wonderland roller skating rink in the Myrtle Beach/Walnut Beach neighborhood, I learned what it means to be a Community.

Thirty years in finance & operations with great companies & great mentors, I learned what it takes to build a successful business, to be a Team Leader and a Team Cheerleader.

Throughout my years volunteering with the Oyster Festival, the Boys & Girls Club, the Wildermere Beach Association, community-organized clean‐ups, food drives, and the Wildermere Beach Church, I learned that we have a plethora of smart, dedicated folks who know what it takes to move our town forward.

Watching my sister, Linda Smith Stock, set the standard for customer service as Zoning Enforcement Officer and as our City Clerk, I learned about good government.

We have gotten off track when it comes to economic development in Milford, and as a consequence, Milford’s reputation & quality of life has suffered. Economic development is not touting the installation of barely-recognizable bicycle racks. Economic development is not publicly harassing a well-established business like Eli’s on Daniel Street for their $2.5m investment downtown for the sake of political cronyism. Economic development is not dumping asphalt millings at Eisenhower Park in the hopes of some future resale value. Economic development is not ignoring the abuse of the CT Affordable Housing statute with the excuse that it is “a state issue” as explained by the spokesman for the Blake administration while supporting election-year moratorium gimmicks.

And why, with one of the highest per student spending rates in Connecticut, and the country, are we ranked alongside the lowest performing school systems? So how do we get back on track? It is time to get back to basics and manage the business of Milford. Tap into the wealth of knowledge & experience across our city teams, pay vendors on time, make customer service Job #1 — and bring respect back to city government.

It is time to stabilize, and reduce, the tax burden on our home and business owners by focusing on real Economic Development and aggressively market all that Milford has to offer. We need a sound business & marketing strategy to pursue commercial, corporate & industrial business opportunities. We need to embrace the input & support of the talented, successful business people in Milford and take our show on the road. We need to take back control of Milford’s quality of life from overzealous & inappropriate development in our neighborhoods while working with our state representatives to bring common sense to the 8‐30g Affordable Housing statute.

We need a detailed sustainable long-range plan for infrastructure maintenance & capital improvements. We need to work collaboratively with state officials to develop a common sense, fiscally sustainable plan for Myrtle/Walnut/Silver Beach neighborhoods and Silver Sands State Park.

We need to figure out what we are. We can do this with the right leader with the right business & community experience who believes in the power of teamwork & collaboration. I respectfully ask you to support me and the Republican team November 3rd.