Fall Is A Time For Beautiful Scenery, And Re-Engaging With Your Civic Duty
With the arrival of October, Newtown is in full autumnal celebration mode as our plentiful population of trees and other flora begin to display all their colorful splendor. At this time of year, there is nothing better than to spend a few minutes — or hours — exploring Newtown’s parks, trail systems, the Fairfield Hills campus, taking a stroll through one of our beautiful forest preserves, or along one of our lakefronts.
But early October also presents an opportunity to remind residents who may not be, to register to vote. This year’s November 2 Election Day will be upon us in a flash.
Perhaps this year more than ever, Election Day with its slate of local candidates and capital project authorization requests presents an opportunity to not only re-engage your civic-mindedness, but to play a key role in endorsing the selfless volunteers who are stepping up to serve you, and our community.
The town clerk’s office also reminds you that absentee ballots will be available on October 1, and must be received before the close of voting on election day to be counted. And considering the “no fault” option to cast your votes by absentee ballot is still in effect, there is no reason for anyone to concern themselves with saving the date and making a trip to their local polling place on Election Day unless it is your preference.
That means there is no good reason for every registered voter in town — as well as students, military personnel, and those residents who may work or reside part-time outside the community, to abstain from their privilege of voting.
Absentee ballot applications can be completed and delivered to the town clerk’s office in person, via the US Postal System, or dropped into the convenient and secure ballot boxes located outside the entry doors of the Municipal Center at Fairfield Hills. And if you already applied, the same is true for completed ballots.
Absentee ballot applications can also be requested on line by visiting https://portal.ct.gov/SOTS/Election-Services/Voter-Information/Absentee-Voting.
The Newtown Bee’s “Letter Hive” has already been buzzing with notes from numerous candidates seeking re-election, as well as hopeful newcomers looking to step into the arena of public service — and we applaud each and every one of you for your willingness to serve.
More so this year than in recent history, a significant number of incumbent officials are circuiting off their current posts to return to their own private lives and endeavors, while others are mounting campaigns for different key elected offices. So getting to know who is on the local ballot, and the office they are seeking, is an important exercise for voters.
It is our sincere hope that residents will engage more so than in other recent civic activities, namely your annual budget referendums where turnout has been abysmal — most recently with fewer than nine of every 100 qualified voters endorsing the 2021–22 budgets totaling more than $123 million.
We encourage — no, implore — Newtown residents: do not abandon your own voice and assign it to nine, or 12, or 20 out of every 100 of the rest of your neighbors. If you care about your community and its future, make Election Day 2021 the year your voice is heard and your vote is registered.