Since moving to Guilford some two years ago, I learned that Matt Hoey played a major role in why I moved from Cheshire. First, the fabulous town library is situated on a vibrant Town Green. A magnificent new high school is backed by a first-rate administration and Board of Education. The waterfront, open spaces, and town spirit is evidenced by its parades and fairs. I note Guilford has a professional fire department and new facilities for the police. This is a well-run town, one of the best places to live in Connecticut with a top-rated school system. Why do I care so much about the schools, as my children are now college graduates? My wife and I want to be surrounded by people who care about their town and their youth.
A town that works as well as this one reflects excellent fiscal management. In a decade of eroding State assistance, Guilford has managed to deliver the capital improvements required for the attributes mentioned above with only modest tax increases. Rather than simply claim taxes can be reduced by eliminating waste, Hoey demonstrated that prudent fiscal management could allow Guilford to improve services and fund town pensions despite dwindling state support. Of course, he didn’t do it alone. Hoey demonstrated his ability to work with the selectmen and Board of Education to keep Guilford on track. In the most recent example, Hoey planned a budget that assumed a $1 million cut from state aid. We now know the cut will be much less, which means Guilford will have an approximately $800,000 surplus that can be applied to tax relief. This proactive approach is why Guilford enjoys a AAA bond rating and low interest on its debt.
Hoey delivers. He demonstrates the qualities of a successful first selectman.