New Canaan’s highest-elected official last week voiced criticism of an appointed town body’s finding that further investigation is warranted into a complaint that he violated the Code of Ethics in the run-up to November’s municipal election. First Selectman Kevin Moynihan in a Jan. 5 email to the Board of Selectmen, Town Council, Board of Finance, Audit Committee and Board of Ed chair called the complaint lodged Nov. 1 by a town resident “spurious.” In it, the complainant, Micaela Porta, said that Moynihan “using his position as first selectman violated several sections of the town Ethics Code when he sent an undated letter to all residents of New Canaan prior to the town’s Nov. 2, 2021 municipal election,” according to a citation that the Ethics Board made at its Jan.
Kevin Moynihan, a longtime resident and community volunteer who has served for four years on the Town Council, won election to New Canaan’s top municipal office on Tuesday by 33 votes. The Republican earned 2,684 votes in a widely anticipated first selectman race against Democrat Kit Devereaux, who received 2,651 votes, according to figures supplied by the New Canaan Registrars of Voters. The .6 percent margin of victory —a math-defying outcome, given the party makeup of New Canaan’s electorate—narrowly beats the state-mandated recount figure of .5 percent. Moynihan said he felt “wonderful” though “we expected to do better, quite honestly.” “I am surprised it was so close,” he told NewCanaanite.com.
The campaign for the Republican candidate for New Canaan’s highest elected office has outspent its Democratic opponent by more than 15 times, according to the most recent data available through financial disclosure filings. First selectman candidate Kevin Moynihan’s campaign committee had garnered expenses totaling $29,966.29 through Sept. 30, according to his financial disclosure statement, compared to $1,920.13 for Kit Devereaux’s campaign. Moynihan’s campaign also had raised $35,980 in contributions from individuals through Sept. 30 through compared to $9,310 for Devereaux’s.
Republican candidates for selectman Christa Kenin and Nick Williams said during a debate on Wednesday they would not force a primary in the fall municipal election should they fail to win the nomination during the Republican caucus on July 18. This is in contrast to two of the three Republican candidates for first selectman, Cristina Ross and Kevin Moynihan, who earlier in the evening indicated that it is possible they will choose to primary, should they fail to get on the party ticket. Both said it would depend on the outcome of the vote in the caucus. When asked if he would support his opponent in the fall election if he is not endorsed, Williams, a three-term incumbent, said during the Republican Town Committee debate, “Yes, I support Republicans.” “And although it’s not my race, I’m a little shocked to hear that at least two of the candidates running for first selectman saying they won’t respect this process and that they’ll primary,” he said during the debate, held at Town Hall and moderated by Michael Dinan of NewCanaanite.com and Greg Reilly of the New Canaan Advertiser.