Town Manager's Report - January 16th, 2018
Development of FY 19 Budget
A Public Hearing will be held on February 5th at 7:15 PM regarding the development of the FY 19 budget. Citizens are welcome to come voice their opinions and give their input during that time.
Income Tax Consulting for Seniors
Income tax consulting for seniors begins Thursday, February 1st andwill be held every Monday and Thursday through March 31st from 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM at the Windsor Senior Center. Seniors can get the advice they need to fill out their federal and state income tax returns from trained AARP volunteers. Bring your 1099 and W/2 forms together with a copy of last year’s tax return. This is a free service, but appointments are necessary and available spots fill quickly. Make an appointment by calling 860-285-1992.
Police Department Community Outreach
The Police Department is planning a community outreach program in late February. The program is designed to foster communication and understanding through analysis and discussion of current issues and trends involving law enforcement and the community. Topics such as officer recruitment and training, police use of force, and motor vehicle stops and traffic enforcement will be covered. As details on date, time and location are finalized in the next few weeks, we will be getting the word out to the community.
Open Space Grant Award
I am pleased to announce the town has been awarded $1,086,000 from the State of Connecticut’s Open Space and Watershed Land Acquisition (OSWA) grant program towards the purchase of 95 acres of the former Millbrook Golf Course on Pigeon Hill Road in Windsor. The Trust for Public Land, a national not-for-profit organization, has been working alongside the town to help protect this key parcel. The property will open to the public for walking and other passive recreation after the conclusion of the acquisition.
The grant program provides financial assistance to municipalities and nonprofit land conservation organizations to acquire land for open space and to water companies to acquire land to be classified as Class I or Class II water supply property. The grants are administered through the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP). Funding for the DEEP OSWA grants is derived from State Bond funds and the Community Investment Act.
The former golf course property was once slated for a 240-unit subdivision, however, the development approval expired in 2014 and the property was soon back on the open market. The Trust for Public Land has an option to purchase the land and plans to deed the property to the town this spring once the remaining funds needed to purchase the property are secured. The Millbrook property is one of the largest unprotected properties immediately adjacent to town center.
With a mix of open meadows and wooded areas as well as the Mill Brook running through it, the property provides a range of wildlife habitat. This acquisition will also help further protect the Mill Brook which is an important tributary to the Farmington and Connecticut River.
In the next 60+ days, formal action to approve the land purchase and appropriate funding will be needed by both the Town Council and a Special Town Meeting. The suggested funding model for the acquisition is to utilize the nearly $1.1M grant award plus approximately $650,000 in existing funds from the Town’s Open Space Fund and an additional $350,000 through new borrowing or use of the General Fund’s Undesignated Reserve Fund.