YOUR VIEW: Alderman defends city's environmental record

Published on Thursday, 2 November 2017 20:39
Written by


To the Editor:

I want to take the time to make something clear to voters. The attack from the Merrill Gay campaign on Mayor Stewart and her team for being “environmentally unfriendly” or “not caring about our environment” is factually disproven and contradicting in its manner.

Mayor Stewart assembled an “Energy and Innovation Committee” in January of 2016 to help carry out her “SMART City” Initiative, which aims to focus on energy efficient projects to reduce costs and limit impacts on the environment.

Let’s take a look at what has been done under Mayor Stewart’s leadership in respect to the environment:

- The largest solarization project in New Britain history, with the construction of a solar array at Shuttle Meadow Reservoir and roof top solar arrays on many of our schools.

- A fuel cell at the high school, only one of the few schools in the state with an existing fuel cell. The fuel cell provides free heat to the high school and annual savings add up to $20,000.

- A street light transformation project that is to begin in 2018 and will replace each of the city’s street lights with LED lights, adding up to $250,000 in annual savings through installing environmentally friendly lighting fixtures.

- As of Oct. 30th, a business called “Simple Recycling” has started its curbside textile collection service, allowing for residents to place a pink bag next to their recycling bin on normal days of pick-up. The service is meant to limit the impact of waste in our landfills. It’s free and is the first of its kind in Connecticut.

- City fleet management has become both energy and cost efficient, decreasing the amount of vehicles on the road. In 2016, city vehicles saw a 26 percent reduction in overall fuel costs.

- The city has added electric vehicle charging ports in city parking garages and has plans to add more electric charging ports in the next year to help facilitate the rise of electric vehicles in our society.

These are some of the completed or actively working projects Mayor Stewart and her team have led in the last few years. These aren’t words, proposals, or campaign talking points. These are facts and they can be easily fact checked in any of our local newspapers, the city website, or by taking a look at the projects first-hand.

Lies shouldn’t be spread to people in the hopes of tricking them. That’s deceiving and there is no room for deceitful politics in our city. If we want to see these projects continue and the city continue to grow the way it has in the last four years, be sure to vote for Mayor Erin Stewart and her team on Row B on Nov. 7th

Alderman Robert Smedley

Ward 4, New Britain

Posted in New Britain Herald, Letters on Thursday, 2 November 2017 20:39. Updated: Thursday, 2 November 2017 20:41.