SOUTH WINDSOR – City council and school board members, past and present, have formed a new political party called the United Community Party.
Founding members are City Councilors Phil Koboski and Marek Kozikowski, School Board members Arthur Adduci and Jessica Waterhouse, and former City Council and School Board member Janice Snyder.
Waterhouse was previously a registered Democrat, and the remaining founders were affiliated with the Republican Party.
Adduci said the new party’s goal is to focus on local politics and local solutions to problems, such as managing development and a growing school population while rising above divisive politics.
“It’s not about being against Republicans or Democrats – it’s about being for South Windsor,” Adduci said.
The party also cites the promotion of community service as one of its guiding principles.
“Volunteering is the cornerstone of a community of unity…(and) these efforts require volunteering our time and energy for the betterment of the community,” read a party statement.
Adduci said the main catalyst for the formation of the new party was the 2021 elections, which he called “toxic” and centered on parties insulting the opposition.
“The next day we got together to start talking about it,” Adduci said.
A statement prepared by the United Community Party says the 2021 election was “zero” for social media and print attacks between Republicans and Democrats on national issues.
“The divisive tactics of national politics have seeped into South Windsor and brought a screeching halt to collaboration and progress within our city,” the statement read.
Kozikowski said the discussion among the founding members began with their frustrations with the November election and finding their options for improving the city’s political climate.
“We talked about going strictly independent…we thought the best way to effect the most change in a positive direction was to follow the path we’ve been on,” Kozikowski said of creating a new political party and a new platform.
Adduci said the ultimate goal is to unite the city to move forward productively.
“There is no left, right and center – there is South Windsor,” Adduci said.
Kozikowski said founding members of the United Community Party recognize that gaining a foothold will be a challenge, as the city has never seen a successful third party take root and grow.
“We are committed and basically betting on ourselves and South Windsor for their support,” Kozikowski said.
Snyder said elected members who now sit on city or school boards have shown bravery in changing their affiliations.
“They’re coming out on a limb to say they’re done with the political games…that’s a big commitment on their part,” Snyder said.
The members of the new group deposited their statutes and the documents necessary for the formation of the party at the town hall on Tuesday morning. The city’s voter registry staff told members they would have to endorse and field a candidate in an election who gets at least 1% of the vote before they can submit their party rules for full recognition by the city. Until then, they are considered unaffiliated by the city’s voter registry.
Joseph covers East Hartford and South Windsor. He joined the JI in July 2021. Joseph is a graduate of the University of Connecticut and he is an avid guitarist and coffee enthusiast.