Fairfield Town
Government Structure

We live, work and play in Fairfield, but how much do we really know about how the town works?  Who are the elected officials who make sure our town stays on track?  Know Your Reps has put together this simple organization chart to show you who does what.

HOW TO NAVIGATE THIS PAGE: Click on each Position below to jump to its description

RTM

Position Descriptions

BOARD OF SELECTMEN

The three-member Board of Selectmen (BoS) is the executive branch of Fairfield that recommends and approves town policies, goals, budgets, and board/commission appointments, among many other things. The BoS is headed by the First Selectman, who is effectively the “mayor” of Fairfield and a full-time, salaried employee. The other two Selectmen hold unsalaried, part-time positions. The town charter requires that there be “party balance” on this board – in other words, no more than two Selectmen can be from the same political party.

See BoS Candidates HERE

RTM

The Representative Town Meeting (RTM) is the town’s legislative body. It is the equivalent of a “Town Council”. In addition to enacting town ordinances, the RTM hears and votes on town budgets, considers special appropriations and capital projects, votes on collective bargaining agreements, and addresses a myriad of other issues affecting the community. RTM members are the direct representatives of the people of Fairfield and, as such, town residents are encouraged to turn to their district RTMs as their first point-of-contact for addressing concerns about the community.

See RTM Candidates HERE

BOARD OF EDUCATION

The Board of Education (BoE) is the governing body that oversees the town’s public school system and – through regular public meetings – provides a forum for the public, school administration, and teachers to share information, discuss key issues, and air grievances.  The BoE steers the schools’ mission and strategic planning, establishes school policies, oversees capital projects and key contracts, approves annual budgets (which account for about two-thirds of the town’s total annual budget), and makes high level personnel decisions, such as the hiring of the superintendent of schools. 

See BoE Candidates HERE

BOARD OF FINANCE

The Board of Finance (BoF) oversees the town’s financial management, planning, and reporting. Two of its primary responsibilities are recommending town budgets for RTM approval and supervising outside audits of the town’s finances. It also holds public hearings on key financial issues affecting the town, considers special appropriations, approves bond issues, and establishes tax mill rates, among many other important financial oversight duties.

See BoF Candidates HERE

TOWN PLAN AND ZONING

The Town Plan and Zoning Commission (TPZ) hears and approves applications for residential and commercial building projects, and oversees the development of a master plan for the town, including design of public spaces, local roads and bridges, and other structures. The TPZ’s decisions can have a significant and lasting impact on the character of the town, as well as the health and sustainability of its tax base.

See TPZ Candidates HERE

BOARD OF ASSESSMENT APPEALS

The Board of Assessment Appeals (BAA) has the authority to change property assessments in response to petitions from taxpayers who believe that their properties have been valued incorrectly.

See BAA Candidates HERE

ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS

The Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) hears and acts upon appeals of rulings by the Town Plan and Zoning Commission, and grants variances and special permits.

See ZBA Candidates HERE

CONSTABLES

Many years ago Fairfield constables were full-fledged law enforcement officers, but today their role is strictly an administrative one. Constables serve papers primarily on behalf of the Fairfield probate court, but also on behalf of the town and other entities issuing subpoenas and legal notices, e.g. tax executions and evictions. Constables receive a small stipend for this service.

See Constable Candidates HERE

TOWN CLERK

The Town Clerk maintains town records and provides a wide range of services, including administering absentee ballots, providing polling location information, issuing dog, game, and marriage licenses, and conducting land record searches.

See Town Clerk Candidates HERE

Number of Members: 3

Paid or Not: First Selectman is a full-time paid position; Selectmen are part-time volunteers

Term of Office: 4 years, no limit

Party Balance: No more than 2 members from the same political party

This year: Voters elect 1 First Selectman and 2 Selectmen

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Number of Members: 4 members in each of Fairfield's 10 districts = 40 RTM members

Paid or Not: Volunteer

Term of Office: 2 years, no limit

Party Balance: Not required

This year: All positions are up for re-election; voters select 4 RTM members in their district

 

Number of Members: 9

Paid or Not: Volunteer

Term of Office: 4 years (no limit), staggered

Party Balance: No more than 5 members from the same political party

This year: Voters elect 5 members

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Number of Members: 9

Paid or Not: Volunteer

Term of Office: 6 years (no limit), staggered

Party Balance: No more than 6 members from the same political party

This year: Voters elect 3 members

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Number of Members: 10 (7 regulars and 3 alternates)

Paid or Not: Volunteer

Term of Office: Staggered; 9 members serve four-year terms, 1 member serves a two-year term

Party Balance: No more than 7 members from the same political party

This year: Voters elect 4 members

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Number of Members: 5

Paid or Not: Volunteer

Term of Office: 4 years; staggered

Party Balance: Not required

This year: Voters elect 2 members; only 2 people are running this year

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Number of Members: 8 (5 regulars and 3 alternates)

Paid or Not: Volunteer

Term of Office: Staggered; 4 members serve four-year terms, 1 member serves a two-year term; alternates serve four-year terms

Party Balance: Not required

This year: Voters elect 4 members (3 four-year term members and 1 two-year term member)

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Number of Members: 7

Paid or Not: Largely volunteer (small stipend received)

Term of Office: 2 years, no limit

Party Balance: Not required

This year: Voters elect all 7 members

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Number of Town Clerks: 1

Paid or Not: Salaried

Term of Office: 4 years

Party Balance: N/A

This year: Voters elect one town clerk; only the incumbent is running 

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