Council appoints O’Leary to fill vacant seat

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By Elio Gugliotti, Editor

Kevin J. O’Leary

PROSPECT — The newest member of the Town Council is looking to bring a more youthful touch to town government.

“I feel that I can bring a younger generational approach to municipal governance, which reflects the younger families moving into town and partaking in town activities,” Democrat Kevin J. O’Leary said.

The council Feb. 2 unanimously appointed O’Leary to fill the seat vacated by former council member Paul Murray, a Democrat whose resignation was effective Feb. 1. O’Leary, who was nominated for the seat by the Prospect Democratic Town Committee, will serve the rest of Murray’s term to November. Council seats are up for election in November.

O’Leary, 31, was sworn in Feb. 2. He has lived in town for about two years with his wife, Kelsey. They have a 9-month-old daughter, Alaina.

O’Leary is an attorney and partner at Dolan Divorce Lawyers in New Haven, specializing in family law matters statewide. He graduated from the University of Connecticut School of Law.

O’Leary served as an alternate on the Inland Wetlands Commission for a year before his appointment to the council. He is also a justice of the peace and a member of the Democratic Town Committee.

O’Leary said he’s grateful for the opportunity to serve on the council and it’s important to him to give back to the community.

“My family chose to move to this community for the great schools, great community and great neighbors,” he said.

O’Leary said he sought the appointment because he feels his legal background can be an advantage for the town. He also said the town should be seeking state grants when possible to help improve the community as a whole.

“Securing state grants for community improvement projects such as the sidewalk initiative can greatly alleviate the financial burden on the town,” he said. “I also want to place an emphasis on continuing to preserve open space in town and possibly exploring options into getting public access to the surrounding open space, which is abundant throughout town, for recreational purposes.”

O’Leary said his goals also include maintaining the tax rate, effectively balancing the budget, and working to ensure transparency at every level of town government.

“The residents of the town deserve to know everything that is occurring at town hall,” he said.