$6.3M capital bonding package finally wins approval
Published 2:53 pm, Tuesday, March 24, 2015
After being batted back and forth between the selectmen and finance board for weeks, $6.3 million in non-recurring capital projects was approved unanimously -- with almost no discussion -- by the Representative Town Meeting on Monday.
The RTM approved the monies in three separate resolutions. Projects were sorted by their expected shelf life into bonds of either 5, 15 or 20 years.
The bonding includes, among other things, money for boilers at Jennings School, a new turf field at Fairfield Ludlowe High School, two new Department of Public Works trucks, a fire pumper, and a series of security and safety improvements in the school district.
Majority Leader Ed Bateson Jr., R-3, said he likes that two of the new DPW trucks were in the bonding package and one was included in the department's operating budget. "Next year, I expect just one in non-recurring and the rest in the operations budget," he said.
Bateson said he was not happy to allocate bonding for the trucks, but said as long as the department keeps its promise to eventually move them out of the non-recurring bond package and into the operating budget over the next two years, he could live with it.
He said if the department kept its promise to do so, the RTM would keep its promise to fund trucks in future operating budgets.
A similar agreement was made with public works officials several years ago in an effort to remove paving costs from bonding resolutions. However, in the last few years, the town's governing bodies have reneged on that agreement and cut funding for paving.