Lauretti hosting event pushing RTC candidates

Photo of Brian Gioiele


Brian A. Pounds / Hearst Connecticut Media

Republican Town Committee-endorsed candidates are getting some high-powered support next week.

Mayor Mark Lauretti — who is seeking his 15th consecutive term against Democratic challenger John Harmon this November — is hosting an event “in support of Shelton Republican candidates” in the Sept. 10 primary.

The event will be Monday, Aug. 26, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Park. The cost is $50 per person, with a buffet, beer and wine included.

This type of event has become necessary for the RTC-endorsed candidates since seven Republicans have earned the right to primary for spots on the November ballot.

Mark Holden, Anne Gaydos and Tom Minotti all submitted signatures to primary for the Board of Education. The trio will be looking to unseat three from among the Shelton Republican Town Committee’s chosen candidates — incumbents Dr. Darlisa Ritter and Kathy Yolish and newcomers Carl Rizzo, Jim Ozaretti, Ben Perry, Don Stanziale, Ruth Parkins, John Fitzgerald and Amy Romano.

The RTC tabbed all eight Board of Aldermen incumbents to run for their respective seats, but even those will not come without a fight — most notably in the third ward. Save Our Shelton members Greg Tetro and Peter Squitieri filed their signatures in the registrars of voters office to seek a primary against Alderman President John Anglace, Jr., and Cris Balamaci.

Board of Apportionment & Taxation member Mike Gaydos, who was nominated by the RTC Steering Committee for a return to that role but withdrew his name during last month’s RTC caucus, is seeking to primary in the second ward, where longtime incumbents Stanley Kudej and Eric McPherson earned the RTC nod.

The event is paid for by Republicans for Continued Tax Stability. The invitation states that it is approved by all endorsed candidates, yet one is not part of the group.

Some RTC members joined in gathering signatures for petitioning primary candidate Bernie Simons in the Board of Aldermen’s fourth ward. The only issue is that the RTC, including Simons himself, voted for Jim Capra and Noreen McGorty, incumbents in the Board of Aldermen’s fourth ward, voted for the pair to represent the Republicans on the November ballot.

Lauretti has stated that Capra is the candidate some Republicans are seeking to oust after learning that he was active in gathering petition signatures for primary hopefuls Jones and Tetro.

“Lauretti only mentioned Tetro and Jones because he is scared for the aldermanic seats and Planning and Zoning commissioner seat,” said Capra. “The mayor is really ‘punishing’ me for nominating on convention night and supporting Anne Gaydos for Board of Education. The mayor stated publicly before storming out of the Republican Steering Committee meeting which was held the night before the convention, if Anne Gaydos gets on the ballot, he will leave the Republican party. Bullying and intimidation at its finest. I’m done, no more.”

Capra has since joined forces with those primary hopefuls in forming Here for Shelton, which held its first fund-raising event Thursday, Aug. 15. Here for Shelton will be hosting a Facebook live Q&A Sunday, Aug. 25, at 8 p.m. Capra said the event will feature a “surprise guest.”

Capra said the Here for Shelton candidates will “always stand for keeping taxes low while continuing to provide great services to all of Shelton. Be a voice for fair, balanced and responsible development and supporting our great schools and students. We will be transparent and open and work to build great communication between all departments, boards and commissions. We will not be rubber stamps, we are here for you.

“Myself and the team are offering a new brand of Republicans that refuse to bullied by Mark Lauretti or punished by the Shelton RTC,” added Capra. “I’m supporting candidates who are the purest form of public servants I have ever met and I ask that you support us on Tuesday, Sept. 10.”