Candidate profile : Christopher Bielik

Democrat

Beacon Falls Board of Selectmen

Chris Bielik

Age: 50

Occupation: Contract History Lecturer/Retired Commander, US Navy

Past political posts: Current Chairman, Board of Finance; Conservation Commissioner

Education: BS, Resource Management, US Naval Academy, Annapolis, MD; MS, Public Administration, US Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA

What do you think should be done with the Wolfe Avenue property and how will Beacon Falls pay for it?

“The Wolfe Avenue purchase occurred near the top of the market. To sell it now would result in a significant loss to the town, not just in dollars but in potential for future growth. We must take the long view and retain this property, even if it means waiting to begin development of the proposed community/media center. We should continue to seek out grant money for this purpose, and realize time is on our side. The small, immediate influx of revenue gained from its sale will not outweigh the regret future generations of our citizens are certain to feel if we lose control of this property.”

What is your plan for economic development in Beacon Falls?

“Towns attract new business by creating a positive environment for growth. I believe the streetscape project currently underway on Main Street is a first step in creating an attractive downtown area that will show businesses we are serious about moving this town forward. Also, our current Economic Development Committee should continue its aggressive searching out of new leads, in order to populate the industrial park with high quality businesses.”

Which issue do you believe is most important to voters, and where do you stand on that issue?

“The state of the economy is by far the most serious issue facing every voter, it impacts every potential decision and affects near and long term planning for maintaining and improving our services and infrastructure.  As current Board of Finance chairman, I am committed to preserving the town’s ability to provide established levels of service to our citizens in a sensible, cost-efficient manner.”

If elected, what are your priorities and goals?

“My top priority is to build an effective working relationship among the entire Board of Selectmen. We need to work together to eliminate much of the misinformation that often spreads throughout town on many of our most important issues. Finding a way to better inform our citizens and answering their questions in a transparent manner will help to instill confidence in them that we are listening. Even if our opinions may differ on how to handle an issue, everyone will know my position and why I have taken it.”