I’m writing to voice my family’s support for the upcoming June 4 referendum regarding the bridge repairs and school projects. The bridge repairs are obviously crucial for access to adjoining roads in town, and their infrastructure must be repaired and maintained immediately.
The Wells Road School solar project just makes good fiscal sense; the energy cost savings over time will be a financial benefit for the town.
The kitchen addition and other repairs and renovations at the high school are long overdue as well. This is a good time to make the investments in our schools and roadway infrastructure, the local and national economies are strong and interest in our town is growing as young families continue to look to Granby for their forever home. The value of enrolling your children in our schools is tremendous. Being a school district with one of the lowest cost per pupil ratios in the state, yet continuing to nurture students with excellent test scores and high graduation rates (as well as growing up to be compassionate, caring, and civic-minded adults) is worth the investment today. Thanks.
On June 4, there will be a town vote on a proposal to meet our school’s electrical needs by erecting solar panels near the Wells Road School. I’m going to vote “yes.” Here are my reasons:
• It will save us a lot of money.
• It will be good for the environment to use the sun’s energy instead of adding more carbon to the atmosphere.
• The wetlands concerns we heard during the March information sessions are being addressed; the small acreage impacted has been reduced. The several neighbors most directly affected are being consulted and will benefit from reduced tree cutting and enhanced landscaping and tree planting in other areas.
I attended one of the March information sessions. The solar proposal has been in the works for several years. Regulatory approval at the State Siting Council, where environmental impacts, including wetlands, will be addressed, is not yet in hand. The council might require further changes. My point is that legitimate concerns are not being ignored at all. The process is working.
Now, we as voters need to do our part by voting “yes” for a sensible plan that will save real money and help our environment.
I am writing in support of the solar farm and the school improvement projects and ask all of my friends and acquaintances and anyone who loves Granby, to vote YES on Q2 and Q3.
These two projects are so very worthwhile for Granby, today and in the future. Granby, like many fiscally responsible small towns in Connecticut, continues to get squeezed by the State; it is difficult to make ends meet with rising costs and decreased revenue from Hartford. The solar farm—an environmentally friendly green energy source—addresses that issue head-on, allowing the town to generate income and offset energy costs. As the solar farm is a school construction project, the state will reimburse the town 39 percent of the project’s cost; it will pay for itself in a few years and will add to our revenue stream without increasing taxes.
As for the school improvement projects, those are long overdue. Granby must do everything it can to make its schools attractive to young families. Our schools are already highly regarded—GMHS was recently ranked by a U.S. New and World Report study as the twenty-first best school in Connecticut and in the top five in the Farmington Valley. Granby can—and should—do more and be better. The renovation of learning and activity spaces (the Media Center/Library, Performing Art spaces and Science, Career, and Technology facilities), replacing roofs and HVAC systems (necessary maintenance), adding a kitchen to the cafeteria (hot food is currently shipped over from the middle school), and bringing running water and sanitary facilities to the sports fields (a health and safety necessity) upgrades GMHS to the standards of a first class, high achieving, public high school. If Granby continues to delay these projects, it increases the likelihood that it will lose ground in its quest to maintain a high-ranking, cutting-edge school. The bonding rate due to Granby’s sound fiscal management is low, the projects for the schools are well-considered, and I ask you to support both of them at the bond referendum on Tuesday, June 4.
Mark J. Migliaccio