Windsor Board of Education Minority Leader Paul Panos is running to become the next State Representative in the Fifth District. "The idea is to provide a choice," said Panos. "If we [the Republican party] didn't run a candidate, that choice wouldn't be there."
Panos knows what it's like to have the dissenting voice. A Republican in a town where both the Board of Education and Town Council are chaired by registered Democrats, Panos feels that his way of thinking is "180 degrees out" from his opponents' on the other side of the aisle.
"We need to give a voice to [the Republican] position to affect a change and influence the outcome of the general election; to get the word out on the Republican position," said Panos.
Panos is someone who cares a great deal about the protection of personal freedoms.
Having once enjoyed living in the city of Hartford, Panos has thoughts on a variety of issues affecting voters in disctrict five, such as public housing.
"Housing is an area of extreme interest for me," he said. "The goal is not to provide free or subsidized housing - I would reinstate owners' rights," he said.
He feels that the rights of property owners should be strengthened, giving landlords more control over their own properties. "Stop regulating it," he said. "You prevent the landlord from running things like a normal business. The long term consequence is that people pull out of the business completely."
Panos is also concerned about the over-regulation of Connecticut residents and "totally disagrees with" Congresswoman Rosa DiLauro's proposition to tax high-sugar soft drinks. "Where do you stop with this?" asked Panos and said, in general, if elected, his focus would be to "work to reduce taxes and spending."
"Paul Panos is a respected member of the Windsor Board of Education for many years," said Republican Town Committee Chair Ronald Eleveld. "On the State level he will not support the current majority's tax and spend policies that are not working for our residents," he said. "He understands we need to reconsider our approach to education an important responsibility of State and local Government."
Panos is an engineer at Alstrom and has seen his three children go through the Windsor schools. He was the Windsor Republican Town Committee Chairperson from 1995-1997.