Sunday, May 16, 2021

Local News

The Race for Selectman in Westbrook

As Republican First Selectman Noel Bishop is being challenged by Democrat Hiram Fuchs, the two candidates for Board of Selectmen are in a competitive race. There are essentially three candidates for the second and third selectman spots: the candidate who loses his bid for first selectman, and the two candidates for the board. The two candidates with the most votes will be seated on the board along with the first selectman.

John Hall III, Republican

John Hall has a long record of service to the town of Westbrook, including serving as selectman for 10 years. He is proud of many of his and Bishop’s accomplishments.

“There’s a number of things we’ve done well,” he said. “Number one is maintaining the budget with the least amount tax increases and continuing all the services that the town actually needs.

“My focus is primarily on spending for the services we need but using common sense,” he continued, “and to give the taxpayer the most bang for their buck that we can. We have a great tax base in town—we have lot of industry, which takes the onus of the burden off the homeowner. Westbrook is fortunate to have a big commercial base and I think we’re very business-friendly.”

Another issue that Hall plans to address in the near future is policing, “switching from troopers to more of a constable force, with at least two full-time constables for continuity of policing in Westbrook,” he said.

George Pytlik, Jr., Democrat

George Pytlik, Jr. credits his family’s history of local involvement for his interest in running for selectman.

“Through that, I learned how the town works and some of its shortcomings as well as its strong points,” he said. “I’m a small business owner in town and I know what it means to have to generate a profit and make long-term investments.”

Pytlik has been rebuilding and expanding his commercial property after a 2016 fire.

“I’ve been general contracting it myself,” he explained. “I’ve got some experience with building contractors and regulations, zoning, planning, the health department. I know everyone [in Town Hall] on a first-name basis at this point.

“Going through all that is what made me join the Zoning Commission,” he added.

A particular concern for Pytlik is infrastructure spending.

“The town is behind the times when it comes to building maintenance and predicting future infrastructure expenses,” he said. “The radio tower is one of those examples—the longer we wait, the more expensive it is. The cost is rising faster than inflation.”

More coverage of the Westbrook municipal elections, including letters from residents, can be found at

Aviva Luria covers news from Old Saybrook and Westbrook for Zip06. Email Aviva at

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