New Britain Mayor, Challenger Face Off Over CTfastrak

New Britain Mayor Erin Stewart broke ranks with Republicans across Connecticut when she voiced her support for CTfastrak, a bus rapid transit system with a hub in New Britain that cost $570 million, with Connecticut taxpayers on the hook for about $170 million.

"Intermodal transit development is crucial for our city," Stewart said, adding that the introduction of CTfastrak has already led to new investment in downtown.

She said it was a no-brainer to support the project that would allow residents to get around the region faster.

"It’s more important to focus on what’s positive for the community and there’s no Democrat or positive way to make positive changes and I think that’s what the people want to hear and I’m glad to bring that to New Britain," Stewart said.

Challenger Alfred Mayo, who is accused of assaulting Stewart at an event last week, said the city doesn't have spending under control, following what he described as an 11 percent tax increase across the board in recent years.

"You can’t ask for something and have no plan and then the city is still in debt," Mayo said.

When asked how he would close the revenue gap if he was to cut taxes Mayo said, "I cannot reduce anything until I get into the office. Once I get into office I could determine what we need and how much we can reduce and cut the spending."

Stewart said she thinks her record speaks for itself.

"New Britain is going in a completely different direction. It’s doing a 180 from where we were two years ago when I took office between all of the construction projects we’ve had. We’ve balanced our city’s budget and I don’t think residents could ask for much more than that knowing that their city is in good stable hands," she said.

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