To the editor:
This Monday, the Trumbull Town Council will hold public hearings and vote on competing plans to change Town Council Districts. I encourage all members of the public to examine the plans before Monday night, and come to the Council to advocate for the best plan. I believe a thorough examination will reveal that the minority plan (seven districts) is superior to the majority plan (four districts).
The majority’s four-district plan is fundamentally flawed for several reasons, but the most significant is the lack of equal representation. I currently reside in District 1. As a Town Councilor, I (along with David Pia and Suzanne Testani) represent the whole of District 1. Any resident of the northeast corner of town can call on any or all of us to advocate on their behalf.
Under the majority plan, District 1 will be represented by five councilors. This is less than District 4 in the southwestern part of town that would be represented by six councilors. This is clearly unfair. Because every resident in town looks to the entire slate of councilors from each district to represent them, it is plainly inequitable that one of the districts receives an extra representative.
While the redistricting committee made the case that this follows the letter of the law, it certainly does not follow the spirit. If we believe in one-man-one-vote, why are we constructing a system in which the number of representatives you have is the result of an accident of geography?
There are real and localized issues in town. For example, in the northwest corner of town, many are concerned about the fate of Wagner Tree Farm property. In the southeast corner of town, the issue a couple years back was the fuel cell plant. My district had a serious problem with sewer lines. How would people in those districts feel if they had fewer voices on the Town Council to advocate for their quite local but legitimate concerns?
As a representative of district 1, I encourage all residents to look at the plans and discover how your voice will be diminished on the Town Council. Plans can be viewed on the town website under the minutes for the “Trumbull Redistricting Commission.” Ask those in favor of the plan to explain why you deserve fewer representatives than people elsewhere in town.
Town Council, District 1