Bindelglass Runs for Second Term as First Selectman

Dr. David Bindelglass announced that he will run for re-election to a second two-year term as Easton’s first selectman. A small group gathered June 3 at Town Hall to witness the ceremonial filing, including his wife, Gloria, who is a nurse at Bridgeport Hospital, and Selectman Robert Lessler.

Incumbent First Selectman Dr. David Bindelglass signs re-election documents in his Easton Town Hall office. With him are his wife, Gloria, and Selectman Robert Lessler. — Nancy Doniger Photo

As he filed the necessary papers, Bindelglass cited his administration’s accomplishments and goals. An orthopedic surgeon in addition to first selectman, Bindelglass is especially proud of Easton’s performance during COVID, when the senior center, the schools, and Town Hall worked together to continue providing services to residents.

He described the additional challenges the town faced during his first term, including Tropical Storm Isaias and the resulting extended power outages.

“I’m first selectman for all of Easton,” he said. “I took office in November 2019, and I’m very proud of our accomplishments over the last two years. We were ready from the start to bring good, effective governance to Easton and, because of that, we were able to handle unexpected challenges while accomplishing several critical projects. Easton needed to see results, and I am committed to continuing to deliver them.”

Other significant accomplishments include completed construction of one bridge on Park Avenue and another one underway; improving health care delivery through joining the Westport-Weston Health District; creation of a representative task force that is examining options for the South Park property; and increased transparency of town government through weekly public updates to citizens.

“Easton voted in May to fund the best education we can offer our children, restoring much needed resources that had been cut previously and addressing the need for additional services to help our students through the pandemic and its aftermath,” he said. “And the vote for the town budget is an endorsement of the good work our town departments are doing and the projects we have undertaken.”

He additionally cited extended public comment at Board of Selectmen meetings, a Town Hall presentation for newcomers, brown bag lunches, and several other open forums. Bindelglass is also improving Town Hall procedures by streamlining the permit process, and expanding Park and Recreation Department projects for seniors.

Engagement in local government grew tremendously during the pandemic, when people could watch and participate in meetings virtually from the comfort of their homes, Bindelglass said. He wants to offer hybrid choices for people to attend meetings in person and online going forward, but said they are still figuring out the technology to do it.

Bindelglass, 62, is the first Democratic First Selectman in Easton since 1985 and is presiding over the first Board of Selectmen with a Democratic majority since 2005.

“Most of our accomplishments have been supported by a unanimous board,” he said. “I intend to keep our work non-partisan and always in the best interests of all the people of Easton.”

Lessler, a longtime selectman and fellow Democrat, said he hasn’t yet filed papers to run for another term. The filing deadline is July 28 for local elected offices, Town Clerk Christine Halloran said.

Photo at top: David Bindelglass files papers with Town Clerk Christine Halloran for re-election as first selectman. — Nancy Doniger Photo

Message from the First Selectman

Updated 5/21/2021


Good afternoon,

Great news on the Covid-19 front! Easton has had no new cases in the two weeks ending May 20, 2021. That is a first since last year and it bodes well for our finishing our school year.  The new Executive Orders this week deal with meetings and mask wearing. Starting Monday, we will change our policy regarding Town Hall. We will open Town Hall to the public on Monday, May 24, 2021. However, one of the things we have learned during the pandemic, is that we are more efficient and provide better service to our residents if they make appointments and we are prepared to see them. I would prefer that we continue that way. People who walk in will be taken care of but, people with appointments will have priority. If folks are not vaccinated, they will be expected to wear a mask.

The Executive Order concerning board, commission and committee meetings was extended to June 30, 2021. The Board of Selectmen will allow the public to attend in person and will also keep meetings on Zoom.  Other boards and commissions must provide a virtual option unless all commission members are comfortable attending in person.

With the passing of Anthony Ballaro, our Easton Building Inspector, we have been working with a collection of inspectors from other towns who have volunteered to pitch in and do the inspections at this unusually busy time. My goal is to make us a responsive town which is user friendly to our residents who are building or updating their homes and properties. I hope that there will be no hiccups while we look for a new inspector.

Last night at the Board of Selectmen meeting, we discussed proceeding with a demonstration project to grow hemp on part of the South Park Avenue property. After receiving input from the Board of Finance and South Park Advisory Committee, we did not approve the project. I would like to ask the people of Easton to consider a suggestion that I derived from the comments of one of our residents, Dana Benson. While he had publicly voiced his disapproval with the Resolution on Race as a Public Health Crisis, he stated that he had come to realize that there were inequities in the health of different segments of our population and his personal action would be to donate money to health-related charities in our region. I thought this was a great idea and so would suggest this for people to consider. Since I have personal ties to some healthcare organizations, I would ask the EDIT Task Force to come up with a list of health-related charities that people could donate to.  We also named Doreen Collins our Town Representative to the Westport Weston Health District.

On Wednesday, I was invited by State Senator Tony Hwang to participate in a panel discussion on affordable housing with Representative Ann Hughes and leaders from other towns in his district including Ray Martin of our Planning and Zoning Commission.  I was struck by the unanimity in our approach to this sensitive issue. We were uniformly in agreement with the fact that decisions with regard to affordable housing needed to be made at the local level. Each of our towns, and all the small towns in our state, have unique features that need to be taken into consideration. We vowed to continue to work together.  Thank you to the Senator for organizing this thoughtful, as well as fruitful, discussion.

Work on the South Park Avenue bridge is proceeding nicely. Please remember to drive responsibly when detouring around the area.

This week we celebrate the 75th anniversary of Easton EMS and Emergency Medical Services week. Easton EMS also received a special award from Bridgeport Hospital for service excellence. Congratulations!

We also recognized five new Eagle Scouts, all of whom did projects to enhance our town. We are proud of them and grateful for their efforts.

Lastly, our prayers go out to Val and Derek Buckley who are both hospitalized following a scary automobile accident last evening.  Both are doing well and we look forward to their speedy recovery.

Have a great weekend.

Dave Bindelglass

Town Hall Will Close May 14, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The Easton Town Hall will be closed on Friday, May 14, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. so staff may attend the funeral of town Building Inspector Anthony Ballaro.

On Friday, May 14, friends are invited to go directly to St. Lawrence Church, 505 Shelton Ave., Shelton for his Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. His burial will follow at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Trumbull.

The family requests that memorial contributions may be made to Shriners Hospital for Children, Processing Center, P.O. Box 863765, Orlando, FL 32886. Friends may leave condolences at www.riverviewfh.com.

Read more about Ballaro here.

Special Voter Registration Session

The Easton Registrars of Voters announce a special voter making session for Tuesday, July 28, from 5 to 7 p.m. in the registrar’s office at Easton Town Hall.

Voters are advised to enter on Center Road and leave at the Morehouse Road exit. Please wear a face mask and bring identification to register.

Easton Raises Gay Pride Flag for First Time

The pride flag flies above Easton Town Hall - Kelly Wendt photo

For the first time in Easton’s history, the gay pride flag is flying above Town Hall. Fairfield resident John Brannelly Jr. donated the flag. He reached out to all six towns in the greater Bridgeport area, asking if each would raise the flag in June to celebrate pride month. All six towns agreed.

State Rep. Anne Hughes, First Selectman Dave Bindelglass, event organizer and Easton resident Elliot Leonard, and Brannelly all spoke to the crowd before helping hoist the flag.

“It’s important that we celebrate diversity in this town,” Bindelglass said.

Brannelly invited anyone in the crowd who identified as LGBTQ to come help raise the flag. Once the flag was up, Easton resident Dr. Whendi Cook-Broderick and her son, Sean, led the crowd in singing the chorus of “True Colors” by Cyndi Lauper.

The rainbow flag has been used as a symbol of gay pride since the 1970s. The flag in Easton will be up through the weekend for all to see.  

Residents May Defer Property Tax Payment

The form to defer property tax payment if you have been financially affected by the pandemic  is available on the eastonct.gov web site.

It can also be mailed to residents if they call the Easton Town Hall, 203-268-6291. Eligibility is defined on the form, which is a very brief two pages. So far only 10 forms have been requested or returned.

“I want to make sure everyone knows about this opportunity for those who are in need,” First Selectman Dr. David Bindelglass said. “Returning the form as soon as possible will help with processing, and the absolute deadline is July 1.”

A Message from First Selectman Bindelglass… Update for 3/30/2020

Good afternoon. 

While it was a cold and dreary weekend, there were a number of heartwarming things happening in Easton.  From the end of my driveway, it was clear Friday evening that much Easton was participating in the Cowbell Challenge. Thank you to our churches as well, for “chiming in.”

I think it brought a smile to the faces of all who participated. Hopefully, it was seen and heard by many of our seniors as well. We hope to have more residents out for this Friday’s Challenge! I have also noticed some spontaneous decorations (see below) around Easton which are beautiful and do lift our spirits.

I have decided to close the tennis courts and basketball court at Helen Keller Middle School. Unfortunately, most of the towns around us have closed these types of facilities as they might encourage people to gather and not keep socially distant. I also do not want to encourage people to come to Easton to do things which they cannot do in their own towns. 

The number of diagnosed infections in Easton remains low. However, I am still concerned.  There are still undoubtedly more cases that have not yet have been identified. Hospital numbers of Covid-19 patients are increasing and accelerating in the area. It is critical to follow all the advice that you hear every day about social distancing and hand washing and staying home. I am particularly concerned about the supermarkets where we all need to go. 

Please be especially careful when visiting these stores to keep your distance and consider that every item you pick up most likely has been touched by many others, so wash your hands, use sanitizer or wear gloves. What is clear about this virus is that the actions of each individual are crucial not only to themselves but to their families and to their entire communities. 

I have new resources to pass along from the Center for Family Justice. As people are stressed, unfortunately bad things happen, even in communities like Easton.

Domestic Violence: 203-384-9559
Sexual Violence: 203-333-2233
Spanish Hotline: 888-568-8332

I have a meeting with the town department heads tomorrow to discuss how we can best continue to serve you and how we can take this time to plan for the future. I am looking for ways to streamline what we do, to provide better service and to innovate in terms of new programs and services.  

In the next day or so we will be posting the presentation on the Annual Budget that would have been presented at the Public Hearing. After viewing the presentation please, email any questions to the Board of Finance BOF@eastonct.gov. We hope to follow up on this with some type of electronic meeting. 

It is always a good time to remember the dedication and effort being made by our first responders to keep us safe, our educators to persevere in educating our children, and all the healthcare workers fighting this battle from the front lines. 

Thank you and be safe. 

Dave Bindelglass

Spontaneous decorations around Easton lift people’s spirits.

Dunsby Bids Farewell

First Selectman Adam Dunsby spent his final day in office clearing out personal items prior to turning over the reins to his successor, Dr. David Bindelglass. Dunsby served for three terms but did not seek re-election. 

He summed up his time in office and his accomplishments as follows:

“As my time as Easton’s first selectman draws to a close, I extend my sincere thanks and gratitude to the people of Easton for their support over these past six years. It has been a great privilege serving you, and I will cherish my time working with residents, officials, and staff.

Working together over these past years we have accomplished a lot and we should be proud of our town: 

Easton is in strong financial shape: Our debt has declined by half over the past six years, our unassigned fund balance has grown, we have maintained our AAA-credit rating, and our pension obligations are well-funded. Since 2013 the average annual property tax increase has been a bit under 0.5%, all while maintaining our excellent schools and providing tax relief for seniors. 

Our town has some important new capital improvements, including a solar power array behind Samuel Staples Elementary School, which produces almost as much electricity as the school uses, as well as a pavilion and restrooms at the Morehouse fields.

Safety and communication are improved, including needed cell service for central Easton and an award-winning commitment to workplace safety. Our town website provides transparency and an easy-to-access portal into municipal government. 

Lastly, a special thanks to the dozens of Easton residents who volunteer their time and expertise to our town’s many boards and commissions. Easton cannot function without their service, and I encourage all residents to consider volunteering to continue to preserve and improve the town we all love.

I wish all Easton residents – especially our newly elected municipal officials – the best.”