Ronald Reagan said, “Concentrated power has always been the enemy of Liberty.” Today, Shelton’s City Hall is a very concentrated power. "When you can't get your opponents to debate you, that should be a red flag,” said Mr. Lauretti to the New Haven Register in 2009. Now, Mr. Lauretti refuses to debate. His last budget roll out, opened with a joke about its importance, was a quarter million out of balance and didn’t allow for questions. He said he would debate, “anyone on any platform,” on “out of control education spending,” and yet, declines to do so for voters. Last year, when asked why some department heads pad budgets and don’t attend public workshops, Board of Alderman President Anglace lashed out for questioning the process. Of all incumbent city officials, only Jack Finn answered questions for the Shelton Voters guide. Simonetti issued a short statement, claiming, “We will continue to work diligently to inform voters of our vision for Shelton,” while ignoring the questions aimed at informing voters of that ‘vision.’ They ask us to blindly accept ‘their’ “vision,” as it unfolds. Shouldn’t it be ‘our’ vision as a ‘community?’ We are left to make assumptions as we vote. Yes, we enjoy low taxes, growth and many services. However, the current administration has also allowed dangerous infrastructure breakdowns during “Surplus” years, in house grand theft, a fiasco with every education budget negotiation and they even lost the last development opportunity on the river, to a private developer, after having first crack at it; a million dollar over-site. Do they really believe that there is no room for improvement, or just that voters aren’t worthy of the conversation? Aren’t checks, balances, transparency and debate, essential to the American way? Aren’t these practices that separate us from countries like North Korea? There is still time to ask questions, but they do still have the right to remain silent. It’s a power we’ve confirmed for them them each November, for a dangerously long time.