A new slate of Democrats is looking to unseat the entire Town Council in Bloomfield and they hope the issue of the Niagara Bottling plant that was developed starting in late 2015 will bring them to victory.
The slate of Democrats up for election in two weeks in a primary, led by Suzette DeBeatham-Brown, said they want to change the culture of local politics.
“We haven’t been able to get true, transparent information," DeBeatham-Brown said Tuesday.
The Niagara project stuck out as a, "not in my backyard," issue for residents who did not want to see the water from their public utility used in a high volume bottling operation. The common thread among the slate is that they felt residents in Bloomfield were caught off guard by the development of the plant.
“Our residents feel so slighted with the Niagara issue," DeBeatham-Brown said. "We believe that backdoor deals were made and the residents weren’t considered and I think that left a bad taste in the residents’ mouth.”
Niagara Bottling has not yet responded to a request for comment.
In a statement, Bloomfield Mayor Joan Gamble dismissed the slate opposing her Democratic Town Committee endorsed group of candidates and said, “None of the opposing council candidates have any experience in town government, and for all of us on council currently, it took two to four years to understand the process of managing a municipality."
As for the Niagara Plant, Gamble said the project has paid off and will continue to for the town.
Gamble wrote, "The Niagara plant will bring nearly one million dollars per year in taxes once its tax abatement expires in four years. The town will receive in taxes from Niagara the ability to improve the infrastructure in the town of Bloomfield."
The Democratic Primary in Bloomfield is in two weeks.