Freshman state legislator Stephen G. Walko (R-150th) announced Wednesday that he will not seek re-election.
Walko, a resident of Charter Oak Lane in Byram and partner at the law firm of Ivey, Barnum & O’Mara, is planning to move his growing family to a new home in Greenwich in the 149th General Assembly District. Connecticut state law stipulates that a state representative must live in the district which they represent.
“As much as I love representing the people of the 150th district in Hartford, I simply cannot serve if I don’t live in the district,” Walko said in a statement. “My family has found a wonderful new home which exactly fits our needs and, while I won’t be moving out of the district for some time, I will certainly not be a resident of the 150th District during the next legislative term.”
Walko was elected in 2012 succeeding Lile Gibbons who retired after six terms. Walko said that tepresenting the 150th is an honor as it has been his family’s home for decades and the to move was difficult but one that was made for the benefit of his family.
In the General Assembly Walko has served on the Finance, Judiciary and Education committees.
“Having the ability to help shape State laws is an experience I treasure. I hope that at some time in the future I will again be given the opportunity by Greenwich citizens to represent them in the General Assembly,” Walko said.
Walko continued, “I have been privileged to work with a truly amazing and dedicated Greenwich delegation. Senator Frantz and Representatives Floren and Camillo are individuals we can all be proud of. But I am especially grateful to the voters of the 150th District. I’ve been honored to work with them, listening to their opinions and concerns while fighting to advance issues important to them. I thank them for allowing me to serve.”
Prior to his election in 2012, Walko served as chairman of the Greenwich Board of Estimate Taxation where he, along with First Selectman Peter Tesei, was the architect of Greenwich’s financial strategy of low and predictable taxes.
Tesei said, “Steve’s service to Greenwich did not begin with holding office as a State Representative and it will not end there either. He’s been a coach, community volunteer, RTM member, BET Chairman and State Representative."
Tesei added, "Steve’s commitment to Greenwich and his commitment to his family go hand in hand because Steve understands the fundamental idea that serving our community is also serving our families – and Steve has a lot of family in Greenwich! He is not only my friend, but a trusted advisor. I know his service will continue in many forms.”
Walko added, “There is still much work before the General Assembly as the session concludes in a few weeks. I am eager to continue to receive citizens’ thoughts and concerns and to bring them to the floor of the House.”