Republican Zoning Board of Appeals candidate Robert Stearns said, if re-elected to the Board of Appeals, he hopes to continue to make a positive impact on people’s lives.
“I try not to be an intimidating government agent,” Stearns said.
Stearns is currently serving his first term on the Zoning Board of Appeals and said he’s enjoyed his time as a member.
“I like being on the board because it’s very interesting. You get to meet people and hopefully make a good difference,” Stearns said.
Stearns said his general goal while serving on the Zoning Board of Appeals is to support the interests of Mansfield residents.
Stearns spoke on a case in which a Mansfield resident wanted another bedroom in his house, but the house was being used as a rental, so due to ordinances, only three non-related people could rent it at the same time.
“I came down in his favor, because it was an error of the zoning agent who didn’t catch it along the way. But we lost that case,” Stearns said.
Stearns said his personal philosophy is that people should be able to do “whatever they want” with the property they own.
“But I also hope that people wouldn’t do things like put up subdivisions. I’m not going to stop them, but I’d encourage them not to,” Stearns said.
Stearns said he did not support Mansfield’s recent ordinances banning students from holding meetings for clubs and organizations off-campus.
“It seems to me it’s a pretty clear violation of the First Amendment, specifically freedom of assembly,” Stearns said.
Stearns, who attended the UConn, has lived in Mansfield his entire life.
He currently works for the Wildlife Division of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection.
- Republican running for re-election on the Zoning Board of Appeals
- Currently serving his first term on the board
- Overall goal is to support the interests of Mansfield residents
- Sees the zoning ordinance banning UConn students from holding organization meetings off-campus as a violation of the First Amendment
Gabriella Debenedictis is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.