April 2018

Capital Project Ignored

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I’ve been following the progress of utilizing the building and property of the former Bridge Street School. It’s accurate to say that there is no progress when there should be.

I want to know why the First Selectman is evading to affect the result of a referendum.

A proposal in 2012 to sell off the property was voted down 4 to 1. Next, town residents convened around developing this valuable town asset into a Community and Cultural Center for Suffield. An official committee was appointed, three years of hard work commenced. This group followed an expensive and arduous legal process to make a business plan, hold debates and town meetings. The necessary Boards and Commissions made approvals. Architectural and other feasibility studies were commissioned.

Public support gathered momentum and the question for bonding to fund and move forward was passed by referendum in October 2015.

Despite delays, a contract requiring the signature of Ms. Mack arrived in September 2017. She decided on her own that “going forward is not in the best interest of the Town.”

State budget woes were cited as her logic for “prohibiting expenditure” when the approved startup cost would be reimbursed. The First Selectman job is to be accountable in fulfilling the will of the voters. This action could set a precedent for voter confidence in all future referenda.

A “compromise solution”, per Ms. Mack, is not acceptable.


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