Monday, November 24, 2008

New Hartford wins "Democracy Cup"

HARTFORD - Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz announced today that New Hartford (94.78%), Weston (90.84%), Newtown (88.97%), and Stamford (81.65%) are the winners of the 2008 “Democracy Cup.” The award is given annually to the small, medium, large-sized towns and city with the highest voter turnout on Election Day.

“This year’s election was the most exciting in a generation,” said Bysiewicz. “Scores of new voters – young and old - went to the polls to make their voices heard. I congratulate these four towns for doing the best job this year of getting voters out to the polls. The involvement of citizens in the democratic process is the cornerstone of our civic life and this year the voters of New Hartford, Weston, Newtown , and Stamford proved they are leaders.”

Co-sponsored by the East Haddam Civic Association since 2000, the Democracy Cup was created as a way to encourage voter participation in each year’s elections. Under Democracy Cup criteria established by Secretary Bysiewicz, towns with fewer than 5,000 registered voters are considered small; municipalities with between 5,000 and 14,999 and voters are considered mid-sized, towns with 15,000 and 49,999 registered voters are considered large towns. This year, for the first time, cities with more than 50,000 registered voters are their own category.

“All Connecticut communities should be proud of their voter participation this year, but none more so than our big cities; especially Stamford ,” said Scot Mackinnon, co-founder of the Democracy Cup and East Haddam Civic Association member. “While New Hartford’s astounding 94.78% was the best turnout overall, Stamford 's 81.65% is amazing for a city with so many active registered voters. Typically, while smaller municipalities have an easier time getting voters to the polls, urban centers, like Stamford, New Haven and Hartford , are gaining ground. This is a trend worth celebrating."



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