First selectman Jamie Cosgrove was once again named the Republican nominee for the seat he has held for 8 years in Branford.
There were few surprises as Cosgrove, who ran 2 years ago unopposed but is expected to face a Democratic opponent this year, accepted the nomination, and focused on his history of working across party lines for the betterment of the town.
That is why we have earned the support of the community,” he said. “It’s not about just our party…It wasn’t about D’s R’s and U’s, it was about Branford, and that’s how we govern and that how we are going to continue to govern.”
The moment became emotional when Cosgrove spoke of his running mate the last 4 elections, Joe Higgins, who passed away last June.
“Joe was a strong part of this team, for me personally, his meetings in my office, at his house, that’s something I’ll always treasure and appreciate, his words of wisdom,” Cosgrove said. “But I also new Angie Higgins would be a strong selectwoman to have on this ticket, I couldn’t imagine running without Angie by my side.”
Angie Higgins replaced her husband on the Board of Selectman after her husbands passing, a move that was initially opposed by Democrats, notably Ray Dunbar, who pushed to add Tom Brockett to the Board instead, a move that would have politically handcuffed Cosgrove as Democrats attempted to take control of the Board. But after public pressure, Dunbar, also seated on the Board, reversed his stance and supported Angie.
Now, Brockett and Dunbar are set to become the Democratic ticket to try and replace Cosgrove and Higgins, to be determined later this week by the Branford Democratic Town Committee.
The top of Cosgroves ticket includes Lisa Arpin, the current town clerk who has run with Cosgrove each year; Robert Imperato, who currently serves on the Board of Finance and is chair of the Branford Housing Authority will run for tax collector, and Deborah Conklin will run for Treasurer.
Of great interest this year are candidates for the Board of Education. The Republicans will put up 4 candidates: Peter Berdon, Laura Troidle, Meaghan DeLucia and Tim Raynor.
The Cosgrove team will largely run on a 8 year track record that has seen significant infrastructure upgrades and a focus on open space, energy conservation and the environment. The town boasts a new Community House/Senior Center, Walsh Intermediate School, Indian Neck Firehouse, A major Blackstone Library renovation, and soon, a new Animal Shelter.
Additionally, the town has managed a major energy conservation effort for town buildings, created a new Branford Hills Park and Ecology Park, added to the Shoreline Greenway Trail, and initiated a variety of additional environmental efforts, including the creation of a Coastal Resiliency fund, the first in the state, to help fund efforts to combat recovery after major storms.
The progress has been seen even as the town reserve funds have increased and the mill rate remains lower than area towns.