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David Martin (mayor)

David R. Martin (born February 23, 1953) is the current mayor of Stamford, Connecticut.[1] A Democrat, he was elected Mayor of Stamford in November 2013 with approximately 48% of the vote. He was sworn in on December 1, 2013.[2] He previously served as the President of the Stamford Board of Representatives (city council) and on the Stamford Board of Finance.

Contents

  • Early life, career and family 1
  • Administration 2
    • Budget 2.1
    • Street Safety & Accessibility 2.2
    • Police Department 2.3
    • Public education 2.4
    • Transportation 2.5
  • Election 2013 3
  • References 4

Early life, career and family

Mayor Martin was born and raised just outside of Kansas City, Missouri. His mother worked as a public school counselor. His father was a lawyer and, later, a trail judge. After graduating from public high school, Martin attended Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he received two B.A. degrees in Biology and Economics. He later earned an M.B.A. from Stanford University.[3]

Following graduation from MIT, Martin took a job working for the Congressional Budget Office in the national security division. He also worked for Pepsico. He moved to Stamford with his wife Judy in 1981 and within a couple of years purchased a home in North Stamford, where they have lived for over 30 years.[4]

In the mid-1980s, Martin took a job at Michael Allen Company, a private consulting firm headquartered in Darien, Connecticut. Martin, who worked there until his election as Mayor, was one of five partners at the company and focused on bringing new approaches and greater efficiency to major pharmaceutical companies such as Abbott Labs, Genetech, Merck and Bristol-Myers Squibb.[5]

Martin and his wife, Judy, in 2008 founded the nonprofit charity The Starfish Connection,[6] whose mission is to support academically talented students from low income families reach their potential and their dreams of attending college. Students enroll in a ten year mentoring program beginning in Grade 3. In 2013, 37 students were enrolled in the program.[7]

Martin has two daughters, Rachel and Sarah, who are both graduates of Stamford Public Schools. His wife Judy left a career in corporate America to become a reading teacher at one of Stamford's elementary schools, where she has worked since 2007.

Administration

Budget

The Mayor made tackling unfunded pension and retiree healthcare benefits a budgetary priority. He will be the first Mayor to fully fund required pension contributions and retiree medical benefits, and will do more to pay down previously unfunded obligations than any prior Mayor. He cites the issue as critical to the long term success of the City and its financial health. Stamford currently has a AAA bond rating, the highest possible rating, and that rating could be put in jeopardy without addressing these issues, according to the Mayor. Increases in paying down these long-term obligations accounted for significant portions of the City budget increase. [8]

The city boards approved a $525 million budget for fiscal year 2015-2016, representing a projected 2.5% tax increase. [9]

The city boards approved a $507.9 million budget for fiscal year 2014-2015, representing a 3.39% tax increase over the prior year.[10]

Street Safety & Accessibility

The Stamford Street Smart Initiative, launched in September 2014, is a citywide public safety and awareness campaign in the City of Stamford. The initiative is focused on the three key areas of enforcement, engineering and education.[11]

The initiative is being led by Mayor Martin, in collaboration with the Police Department, Operations Department, Stamford Public Schools, and community organizations.

New crosswalk signs, road stanchions, and "no turn on red" backlit signs were installed throughout the City in November 2014. [12]

Stamford Police implemented anti-distracted driving patrols that netted over 400 tickets. [13]

The Mayor supported the passage of a Complete Streets Ordinance, which passed the Stamford Board of Representatives unanimously. Stamford is the third city in Connecticut to pass a Complete Streets Ordinance. [14]

The Mayor in his 2015-16 budget request included funding to re-organize City transportation functions under the leadership of a Bureau Chief for Transportation, Traffic and Parking. The Mayor also pledged funding to synchronize City traffic lights, something that hasn't been done in over a decade. [15]

In May 2015, the Mayor announced a Downtown Bike Parking Pilot Program at the launch of Bike to Work Week. [16]

Police Department

In February 2015, the Mayor announced plans to construct a new police headquarters to replace the original 1955 building. The building had been in need of improvements for many years and asbestos-containing material was discovered in the facility in 2014. Public safety officials & community members praised the plan.[17]

The Mayor announced his support for body-worn cameras in May 2015, and pledged to apply for federal grant funding.[18]

Public education

The Mayor serves as a non-voting member of the city's Board of Education. Mayor Martin is the first mayor to regularly attend Board of Education meetings and has been active in supporting public education in Stamford.

Under Martin's leadership, in September 2014, the City purchased the property at 200 Strawberry Hill Avenue from the Sisters of St. Joseph for $9.75 million. The 10.8-acre property is the former site of Sacred Heart Academy, which closed in 2006, and most recently served as the Stamford Campus for The Stanwich School. At the time of the purchase, the Mayor and education officials announced their hope to use the property to address overcrowding in the district's elementary schools.[19]

Transportation

Mayor Martin has frequently spoken about the importance of rail to the city and the critical need for the state and federal governments to provide investment in the Metro North line. He cites it as the single most important factor influencing the future success of the city and region.[20]

Election 2013

Mayor Martin was elected in November 2013 with 48% of the vote, defeating the Republican candidate, Former Lieutenant Governor Michael Fedele, and petitioning candidates Kathleen Murphy and John Zito.[21] Martin was considered the underdog candidate in the race given the Republican candidate's deep connections into the City's Italian community and strong fundraising.

Before competing in the general election, Martin won in the Democratic primary against State Representative William Tong in September 2013 with 52% of the vote.[22] The primary race was among the most closely contested in the State. Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy, a former Mayor of Stamford, endorsed Representative Tong in the Democratic primary race,[23] drawing criticism from local Democratic Party and their Chairman, who endorsed Martin.[24] Martin campaigned vigorously for the nomination and focused on his experience in City Hall and his commitment to the City. Martin's campaign team executed a strong grassroots campaign and absentee ballot program, which helped secure Martin's victory of under 200 votes.

Martin was heavily outspent in both races and contributed nearly $100,000 to his campaign.[25]

References

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  8. ^ http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/local/article/Mayor-pledges-to-fund-benefits-6121185.php
  9. ^ http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/local/article/Stamford-sets-budget-mill-rate-to-follow-6244162.php
  10. ^
  11. ^ http://www.stamfordct.gov/stamford-street-smart
  12. ^ http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/local/article/Stamford-mayor-expands-street-safety-effort-5910030.php
  13. ^ http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/policereports/article/Police-crackdown-on-distracted-driving-nets-75-6173717.php
  14. ^ http://blog.tstc.org/2015/01/30/stamford-becomes-the-third-connecticut-city-to-formally-embrace-complete-streets/
  15. ^ http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/local/article/Stamford-budget-increase-adjusted-6202414.php
  16. ^ http://stamford.itsrelevant.com/content/23153/Bike-to-Work-Week-Kicks-Off-
  17. ^ http://www.stamfordct.govs/stamfordct/files/u1546/february2015_pdbuildingannouncement_2.pdf
  18. ^ http://www.stamfordct.govs/stamfordct/files/u1546/may2015_bodycamsapplication.pdf
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