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Joe Carfora is proud to say that he came to East Haven at the age of eight months and has lived here ever since. As the Democratic Town Committee (DTC)-endorsed candidate for mayor, he said he wants to bring better days to the town’s future.
“I’ve seen this town at its glory and I want to bring it back to its glory,” Carfora said. “I think I’m the man to do it.”
Carfora said he has been in business since 1985 as the owner of Carfora Carriers, LLC, a petroleum freight company that operates out of North Haven. In announcing his candidacy in April, he acknowledged he and his company had fallen behind on financial obligations.
Delinquent personal property tax bills for Carfora Transport, LLC, were paid on March 30 in North Haven and East Haven and his delinquent personal vehicle taxes were paid to East Haven on June 6. North Haven taxes for Carfora Carriers, LCC, were paid as recently as Aug. 15. IRS tax liens on both him and his businesses, which he said in April would be cleared by summer, remain, according to the secretary of the state’s website.
“I’ve certainly had my ups and my downs,” Carfora said. “It’s really tough to be a businessman in the state of Connecticut, but I’ve been in business for 38 years, so that itself should say something.”
He said that his business background has helped him during budget season and as a member of Town Council’s Finance Committee and would go on to maintain “fiscal responsibility” in Town Hall as mayor.
“I know where the fat could be trimmed where we won’t have to raise taxes for the town,” he said. “Being a small businessman, I know how to get things done.”
He was elected to represent District 3 on the Town Council three years ago.
“I wasn’t really happy with the direction the town is going, so I decided to get involved,” Carfora said. “I’ve really enjoyed being on the Town Council, helping out my constituents…and getting involved with a lot of the town’s activities.”
During his tenure as a town councilman, Carfora said he was proud to support the sale and subsequent development of the old high school building.
“I’m glad that that’s finally getting done,” he said.
Carfora voted against the sale of D.C. Moore and continues to oppose the development of the Sperry Lane property into affordable housing units.
“The Sperry Lane project…is very detrimental to the town if that gets approved,” Carfora said. “If the affordable housing goes in there…a project of that magnitude will just cripple our town with taxes going up due to the fact that we’ll probably have to build a new school.”
Carfora said that resident complaints about inadequate parking near the Town Beach are also a priority of his.
“There are major concerns,” he said. “When I’m mayor, I’m going to really tackle those issues and I’m going to resolve those issues down at the beach.”
Overall, Carfora cited failures in the current administration that he would like to fix if the job is given to him.
“It’s bothersome that our town is being run like this,” Carfora said. “I’ve got to give [incumbent Mayor] Joe Maturo kudos for not raising taxes, but I think taxpayers deserve a bigger bang for their buck.”
As mayor, Carfora said that he would address the town’s infrastructure, municipal buildings, and Public Works Department. He also said that his business background would help him save the town money.
Referencing recent lawsuits to be paid out by the town, Carfora said he would also bring more transparency to the office of mayor.
“We’re workers for the people, so I think transparency is big. It’s important that everyone in this town knows what’s going on in our town government,” he said. “That’s why a Carfora administration is going to be as transparent as possible.”
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