Democratic candidates outline fiscal agenda for town

Monroe Town Hall is located at 7 Fan Hill Road.

Democratic candidate for First Selectman Jerry Stevens, Democratic candidate for Tax Collector Nina Gagnon, and Democratic candidate for Treasurer Nick Kapoor outlined their fiscal agenda for the voters of Monroe ahead of the 2023 municipal election.

Jerry Stevens on becoming Monroe’s next First Selectman

“A top priority for my administration will be focusing on the upcoming budget process,” Stevens said. “I will work diligently with all of our finance staff to create a fiscally responsible budget for our town to keep taxes manageable while not sacrificing services,” he continued, “I will schedule community budget workshops to get direct taxpayers’ input on where they want their money to be spent before the final proposed budget is presented for referendum. Stevens said, “My inbox and office will also be open to receive proposals and feedback regarding areas we can cut and/or places we should expand when budgeting. I want to facilitate direct contact opportunities with all of Monroe’s residents and businesses about our budget.”

On specific initiatives, Stevens said, “I want Monroe to be an innovator for what we plan to do financially. Grant writing opportunities will be a priority; Monroe leaves money on the table from the state and the federal government each year – no longer can that happen. Towns around us are awarded grants from various governmental entities, yet Monroe is too often missing from those lists. I want to use our Town Hall employees, and also volunteer members of the community, to join in this initiative on behalf of and for the benefit of the taxpayers.”

On his general view of the town’s finances, Stevens said, “Monroe taxpayers need to see and get more value for their tax dollars. As First Selectman, I will create a working group of elected officials, appointed officials, town hall employees, business owners, and taxpayers to investigate places in our budget where the taxpayer can get more. Can we afford free trash pick-up? Should we investigate working with our neighboring towns to reopen a discussion on sewers? What other services do residents want/need to make Monroe an even more desirable community than it already is?”

Stevens continued, “My first budget will have a true long-term financial plan. The Town Council Committee on Strategic Planning has met only 4 times in the last two years. We cannot let true, long-term financial and strategic planning end up on the back burner when we have so many projects happening in town, including the paving of our roads and the potential purchase of St. Jude’s. Lots of housing and commercial development is in the works with impact and consequences yet to be addressed. With real planning, I will make sure another Pepper Street debacle doesn’t occur.”


Nina Gagnon on becoming Monroe’s next Tax Collector

“The office of Tax Collector is one of the most important in Town Hall, and I am ready to lead on day one,” Gagnon said. She continued, “As a former teacher and current community leader, I have learned problem-solving and communication skills that are critical to the important work of the tax collector’s office. Empathy and compassion are needed now more than ever. I will work with all Monroe residents and businesses to create an equitable solution to any problems that come to my office.” Gagnon said, “When elected, I will investigate keeping the tax collector’s office open a few nights per week during the busy season so residents and businesses can come in and discuss issues in person without having to stop their business or take time off of work. I will also audit the technological needs of the tax collector’s office and attempt to make things more automated and streamlined.”

Nick Kapoor on becoming Monroe’s next Treasurer

“With two wars raging on the other side of the world and political dysfunction gripping our nation’s capital, the volatility in markets must be watched very carefully,” Kapoor said. He continued, “As Monroe’s treasurer, I will create rock-solid relationships with our local banks, monitor all investment activity on behalf of the taxpayers, and keep a close and acute eye on all bills being paid out of the Town Hall.” Kapoor concluded, “The Office of Treasurer is a financial check on many of the internal financial workings of Town Hall – a job that requires experience in the financial field and a keen eye. As a member of the Town Council and Board of Education, I have participated in the budget process of our town and kept a close eye on all financials.”

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