WESTPORT - The race is on for Westport's highest elected position.
Real estate broker Bruce Ware has announced his candidacy for Westport town supervisor, a post that has been held by Dan Connell for the better part of a decade.
"I've been thinking about doing this for a while," said Ware, who frequently attends town, school, and other community meetings. With his two children soon reaching adulthood, he saw this as the appropriate time to take a more active role.
"I realized that if you want to set the agenda, you really have to be at the head of the table," he said.
Ware, 52, has lived year-round in Westport since 1989 when he and his wife, Carolyn, took over operations at Ernie's Market. In 1993 he became licensed in real estate and has owned Weichert Realtors Venture North Associates since 1996. This will be his first run for an elected public office.
Ware said he's noticed a steady loss of jobs in Westport over the past five years; a trend that he hopes to reverse if elected.
"I'm alarmed at the way things are going, and think I can make a difference for the community," he said.
Ware said he'd like to bring a more proactive approach to town government, using his experience in business to attract more jobs and year-round residents to Westport.
"I hope to get the community more involved with government," said Ware. "The taxpayers are concerned about how their money is being spent."
If elected, Ware said his plan is to continue as a real estate broker, but would take a more hands-off approach to selling homes. He said he had difficulty imagining any situations where there might be a conflict of interests between the two positions.
"My capacity as a realtor is really selling the town of Westport to people who don't know it," he said, noting that he could only benefit by improving conditions in the town. "If there is a conflict, I think you have to identify that, but I don't picture there being one."