October 3, 2022
Present: First Selectman Mark Fiorentino, Frederick Moffa, Mark Neumann, Kelly Rome, Margaret Chapple, Student Liaison Charles Orluk, Town Manager Erica P. Robertson, Finance Director Kimi Cheng.
Wildflower Meadow Presentation
Friends of the Wildflower Meadow presented the board with the shovel used for the groundbreaking and expressed gratitude for the support of the board. The group spoke about various achievements and highlights including achieving a 501(c)3 designation status, formalizing a mission statement and being selected by UMass Amherst for a scientific study for pollinators.
Restoration of the exterior of the Holcomb Farm Farmhouse
Robertson reported that the Friends of Holcomb Farm has expressed concern that the Holcomb farmhouse needs exterior renovations, specifically that the exterior has become chipped, a great deal of woodwork needs to be replaced and lead paint needs to be removed. Robertson said that bids have come back higher than what had been allocated and that the Town is requesting additional funding in the amount of $50,382.74.
The board authorized an additional appropriation of $26,282.09 from the Capital Projects Fund, $9,101.23 from the HF Improvement Fund, and $14,999.42 from the Open Space/Property Improvement Fund to support the completion of the farmhouse project. The board further authorized closing the Capital Projects Fund and HF Improvement Fund after this appropriation.
Consideration of Membership and Charge for Charter Revision Commission
Fiorentino thanked members of the public who expressed interest in serving on the Charter Revision Commission. The various Town Committees were prepared to move forward with their recommendations. The board appointed the following nine members to the Charter Revision Commission; Ed Ohannessian (R), Mark Lockwood (R), Ben Perron (R), Rebecca Brewer (U), Anthony McGovern (U), Tony Cappelli (U), Lynn Guelzow (D), Francis Brady (D) and Terri-Ann Hahn (D). The board instructed the commission to consider revisions to the Granby Town Charter it deems appropriate and to submit a report of its recommendations in sufficient time for proposed charter revision question(s) to be placed on the Nov. 7, 2023, Election Ballot. In order to meet this schedule, a draft report will be due to the board before May 20, 2023.
Town Manager’s Report
Robertson welcomed Troy Wolf as the new Deputy Fire Marshall. Wolf is currently the Assistant Fire Chief for the East Granby Fire Department and he will provide coverage when the Granby Fire Marshall is on vacation.
Zen Catering has opted not to renew its contract for the Salmon Brook Park concessions. A Request for Proposal will go out this winter to solicit a new vendor to provide concessions as well as a lunch program for summer camp.
The Police Department hired a part-time dispatcher, Alden Mezger, a Granby resident.
Social Services has seen a rise in requests for Energy Assistance this season. The Connecticut Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) opened for intake a month early on Sept. 1 because of the anticipated higher demand due to fuel prices and increases in cost of living. The basic benefit levels have been reduced by nearly half this season. The department will utilize Operation Fuel, Granby Community Fund, Salvation Army and the Granby Local Assistant Fund to supplement residents who continue to struggle meeting their heating bills.
The greater part of the road overlay program has been completed. Crews continue to shim and patch selected areas and repair catch basins. Crack sealing is under way to keep water from freezing in cracks causing the roads to continue to break up. This process is part of the pavement preservation plan.
Invasive species at Moosehorn Bridge have been cut and removed around the bridge site and utility work has started. Wetlands permitting is under way for Donahue Road and the project will go out for design later this year with replacement scheduled for 2023. Simsbury Road Bridge is still on the schedule for replacement in 2024.
Doherty Road Bridge was recently inspected. It was determined that the bridge should be replaced at an estimated cost of $2.5M. A 50 percent reimbursement is anticipated for the project. The bridge is under 20 feet in length, so it does not qualify for the state’s new program, which has better reimbursement rates. To date, the state has not replied to our request for replacement.
First Selectman Report
Fiorentino said work has begun on the Town Webpage and that information would be coming soon including an opportunity for the public to offer input.
Scott A. Nolan, Town Clerk
To read the full meeting minutes, please go to the Town website, Granby-ct.gov