LITCHFIELD — Voters here will see one local contest on the June 11 ballot and one citizen’s petition at the annual Town Meeting four days later.

Rayna Leibowitz, chairman of the Board of Selectmen, is being challenged by Bruce Pelkey.

Among the proposals involving land use is Kevin Pulk’s citizen’s petition that would permit vehicle sales and service in the rural district, subject to review by the Planning Board. That will be considered during the business portion of the annual Town Meeting, which starts at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 15, at the Litchfield Sportsmen’s Club.

Pulk said Friday he submitted about 350 signatures to the Town Office to get the proposal on the ballot.

“I want to open a repair shop and possibly, down the road, go into used cars,” he said. Pulk said this change in the land use ordinance would enable him to do that at his three-acre property on Center Road. He currently works as a mechanic/truck driver.

The Town Warrant also contains a related proposal sponsored by the Planning Board which would limit vehicle sales and service businesses to buildings of 3,000 square feet or less and the impervious surface area — which would include pavement and parking areas — to less than 10,000 square feet.


It would also require screening as well as a plan for handling hazardous materials.

“The intent is to better define parameters,” Leibowitz said. “A small town like Litchfield doesn’t want a used car lot with 200 vehicles.”

Pulk said he believed his business plan would fit within those limits.

Voters too will be asked to approve updates to the town’s Comprehensive Plan. A committee has been working on that project for the past two years.

Leibowitz said she attended the recent public hearing on that plan and is supporting passage.

Residents will vote on a proposed municipal budget of almost $1.35 million for the upcoming fiscal year.


Town Manager Michael Byron previously said the amount is about $23,000 greater than the current budget and includes $30,000 to replace the roof of the Town Office and the Old Town House Museum.

On the candidate side, Leibowitz, 66, is seeking a second three-year term on the Board of Selectmen.

She is semi-retired and continues to work as a seamstress repairing firefighting gear. She is volunteer director of Litchfield Food Bank, treasurer of the Litchfield Plains Cemetery Association, secretary of both the Historical Society of Litchfield and the Historic Preservation Commission, trustee for Litchfield Academy and director of its thrift shop, and on the Litchfield Fair Board of Directors, and a member of other organizations.

“One of the most exciting things I have learned as a selectperson is how much more information is available to you when you are sitting on this time of the table,” Leibowitz said. “I am a lifetime learner; I love learning new stuff, and this has been such a golden opportunity to learn.” She represents the eighth generation in her family in town.

“I have such a deep abiding love for the tradition, for the history, and for the culture of Litchfield as a small town, and the selectboard form of government is about as pure as you can get it.”

Leibowitz is married and has one child and two grandchildren.


Pelkey, 60, is a lifelong resident of Litchfield and is retired after working for Tree-Free Fiber and Statler Tissue in Augusta, and prior to that, Carleton Woolen Mills in Winthrop.

This is his first bid for public office although he served three terms as president of the Litchfield Lions Club.

He and his wife have two children and five grandchildren.

The race for selectman is the only contest on the June 11 ballot.

Scott Weeks is running unopposed for re-election to the board of Regional School Unit 4.

Three seats are up for election on the town’s Budget Committee. Judith Bourget and Patricia Soboleski are listed on the ballot.

And Leibowitz and Earl Lamoreau Jr. are running for the two Litchfield Academy trustee seats.

Betty Adams — 621-5631
[email protected]


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