Sen. Gordon Brings Voice of ‘Quiet Corner’ Towns to CT169Strong Zoning Town Hall Meeting

April 17, 2023


State Sen. Jeff Gordon (R-Woodstock) yesterday joined state lawmakers and advocates from local zoning advocacy group CT169Strong for a virtual town hall meeting with more than 100 viewers to discuss the potential negative impacts of developer-driven housing measures currently under consideration by the state legislature. Senator Gordon, who is also the Town of Woodstock’s Planning & Zoning Chairman, joined Alexis Harrison and Maria Weingarten of CT169Strong and several local legislators as panelists that addressed these proposed bills, which are sweeping mandates for high density multi-family housing on small towns.


As an alternative, Senator Gordon and the panel discussed how local Planning & Zoning Commissions should be the stewards for land use matters and matters to protect the environment.


“As a State Senator, I am fighting to protect local decision-making. The people of Connecticut know what is best for their towns. You have a right to know what is going on in your town and to help decide what is happening in your community. As Chair of Woodstock’s Planning & Zoning Commission these past 15 years, I understand well what is involved in these decisions. It is unacceptable for state government to think that bureaucrats who don’t know your town nevertheless think that they know better than you, and make these decisions for you. Do you think that makes sense? It is nonsense,” said Senator Gordon.


“The state must stop trying to pound a square peg into a round hole – which never works – and make a one-size-fits-all policy apply to all 169 municipalities. Each town is unique. I support realistic and responsible efforts for affordable housing. The state’s definition of ‘affordable’ housing is strict, and towns cannot meet these requirements because of a lack of public infrastructure, number of local jobs, public transportation, and limited economics to pay for all these things. We must update and improve the way that the state approaches the affordable housing issue. I advocate for looking at ‘attainable’ housing. This is a better way to approach the issue. It considers what people in each town are realistically able to purchase or rent. It also considers what housing can realistically be built in each town. Instead of state attempts to tell people in their towns what to do, let’s all work together to get something meaningful done for the people of Connecticut,” he said.