Getting to Know Danbury’s New Mayor Joe Cavo
Pictured above is Joe Cavo (left) and Mark Boughton (right). Cavo was sworn in yesterday as the new Mayor of Danbury, CT. He replaces Boughton in City Hall after 10 terms and nearly twenty years in office.
Boughton was recently appointed to Tax Commissioner for the State of CT by Governor Ned Lamont. The Danbury City charter dictates that in a case like this, the President of the City Council should finish out the term.
The announcement that Boughton would leave office in Danbury came Thursday evening of last week and in less than a week, a new Mayor is in office. While Cavo has been a well respected member of City Council in Danbury for many years, he's not what you would call a household name -- until now.
People all over the Hat City are very curious about Cavo, his background, his worth ethic and whether or not he will run for Mayor again next year when it's time for a new election. Joe Cavo joined us on Wednesday morning (12/16/20) and answered all of these questions.
At the beginning of the interview, I remarked how weird it felt to introduce someone as Mayor that was not named Mark Boughton for the first time in nearly two decades, this response was, "You know it's a very interesting scenario that's happened, I've only worked for one mayor, technically on the council, but being an employee of the city for 32 years, I've worked for several more than that. So, I've had the great experience to see how Mayors operate and what they do and I have to tell you by far, this mayor (Boughton) has been the best I've ever worked for, both as a City employee and and worked with as a City Government official."
Later, I remarked that he didn't seek this office and I asked Cavo if there was any part of him that felt "put upon" in this situation. He said, "When I worked in the fire department and Mark was running several times, you know, the first time for Lieutenant Governor and the second time for governor, I was very concerned, because I thought this guy can win this and if the people of Connecticut were smart, they would put him in that governor's seat. The problem for me was, I was working on a career in the fire department and I would have had to have left that and then taken over as mayor. So, there was a lot of anxiety back in those years for me. I retired three years ago from the fire department, I've been very happily retired, very happily retired until this point. It's been good, but you know, I'm in a great position. I don't have to leave a job, I don't have to leave while working on my tenure in a company so it's the best of all scenarios. The other thing I will tell you is, I'm thrilled, because one of the things I always thought about years ago, was that if he would have become Governor, he would have taken his staff out of city hall and they would go to the governor's office with him because they have had such a great, long term relationship and that's not happening in this. So, I'm excited to be able to keep Taylor and Dean and Mark and Jonathan and you know, it's going to be great for Danbury."
Next, we asked him the question that is on everyone's mind, will he run for the office again next fall? Cavo said, "That, I think has been the number one question on most people's minds and what I've said to people is, 'Look, this is happening to me sort of suddenly as we all realize. I am concerned about how the pandemic is effecting Danbury, I'm concerned about our economy and I'm concerned about our kids getting back to school at some point, I hope.' You know, I'm very hopeful for a great vaccine roll-out and we can start putting this pandemic to bed and then moving forward. So, what I'm going to just say to you right now is, I have made no thoughts about politics. My thoughts, in these last couple weeks for me have just been focused primarily on government function and what are we doing, how are we doing it and how can we do it better? That's where my focus has been so, I can't tell you right now, it would be unfair if I were to say to you what my plans were. I haven't really thought them, I haven't discussed them with my wife, so I really can't say."