In my lifetime, there are very few events I recall that have impacted the nation as significantly as the current COVID-19 pandemic.

As a teenager, I recall the long gas lines we endured in the 70’s when you could only get gas on days based on your license plate number. The days following 9-11 certainly challenged the nation in unprecedented ways and created a new normal in the way we travel on airlines.

More regionally, who can forget the impacts that hurricanes Irene and Sandy had on the New York Metropolitan area knocking out power to millions and crippling transportation for many (like me) needing to get to jobs in New York and the surrounding areas. While locally, no one (specifically the children) will forget “Snowtober” which forced the first of two successive cancellations of Halloween festivities for Ridgefield.

What I recall most of all about these events is the way people came together as a nation and as local communities to help each other get through the challenges being faced. People carpooled more to save on gas to get through the various crisis in the ’70s. The nation rallied in support of the communities hardest hit by the tragedy of 9-11 and adapted to the increased security impacting them locally in their day to day lives.

Here in Ridgefield, neighbors rallied around each other helping to clean up the aftermath of downed trees, opening their homes with power to those without, offering hot meals and the ability to take a hot shower to their neighbors and even throwing Halloween parties at their homes so the children could still show off their costumes. We are truly a community united when things are at their worst.

Social distancing

Out of an abundance of caution, our lives under COVID-19 will be impacted for the foreseeable future as we find ways to practice social distancing. School closures are challenging school districts to find ways to provide distance learning for our children, companies (like my own) have asked employees to work remotely for all but critical operations, and large gatherings like concerts, parades and sporting events have been cancelled or even banned in some cases.

Locally, our town’s politicians and elected officials will be challenged in having to find ways to keep the normal operations of the town on track. We are currently in the middle of our annual budget process with deadlines that are required by state and local statute culminating in our budget referendum in early May.

Both Republican and Democratic Town Committees need to elect officers and select delegates for the upcoming conventions for federal and state offices. Additionally, Connecticut’s State Primary is scheduled for April 28. At the time of this writing, there is still uncertainty as to how all of this will take place, but I have all confidence in our elected officials to keep the process moving forward.

The one thing I can report is that the Republican Town Committee has confirmed that we can elect our officers and delegates via virtual meetings, and we will move forward with this process as required. Our normal monthly meeting scheduled for March 19 was cancelled. We will keep you informed regarding our future monthly meetings which are scheduled for the third Thursday of each month as more information becomes available. You can find out more about us at our website or you can follow us on Facebook at “ridgefieldctgop.”

Stay safe and healthy.