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04/13/2022 08:00 AM

Not Too Late

Tweed-New Haven airport expansion is the most transformative issue for our Town of East Haven. While the politicians have sat on their hands, tongue-tied, or done a complete about-face, I trust the residents of East Haven to continue to voice concerns about wetlands, flooding, traffic, freight, and noise, air, and light pollution.

Even though a petition was sent to Mayor Joe Carfora to hold open, public forums for discussion, it wasn’t done. Instead, town elected officials recently used police to close public comment under Town Council Chair Joe Deko and watch of Town Attorney Michael Luzzi; Michelle Benivegna initiated the call. The 43-year lease between City of New Haven and Tweed Airport Authority includes eminent domain, freight, and conversion of the east-side property to become a new terminal with commuter parking lots that have no tax revenue for the Town of East Haven.

How can Mayor Carfora have stood in May 2021 with the complete Democratic state and federal legislators including U.S. senators Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal and U.S. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro to say that he was “100 percent on board” while now realizing that he missed an immense opportunity to negotiate the betterment of East Haven.

Is it too late? Not if he starts to listen to residents, not the tight circle of town employees who have suddenly abandoned ship. Where to start? Take a lesson from George Latimer at Westchester County Airport, who politically was able to stop privatization of Avports Management in 2019.

I invite the taxpayers of East Haven to a respectful gathering in front of Town Hall on Friday, April 22, at 4 p.m. to exercise their constitutional rights. With primary resources, residents have done the due diligence as has been the history of East Haven and Tweed airport since the 1950s.

Lorena Venegas

East Haven