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Budget Season Begins in Fairfield: $1.3 Million in Capital Projects Proposed

The Board of Selectmen tabled three projects pending further detail; the Board of Finance will discuss the five remaining items tonight.

Budget season for Fiscal Year 2013-2014 kicked off this month with the introduction of $1.3 million worth of non-recurring capital projects to upgrade and improve Fairfield's infrastructure.

Director of Public Works Joseph Michelangelo presented eight projects to the Board of Selectmen Wednesday -- of the eight, the board chose to table three items pending further information.

The $200,000 proposal to replace the Fairfield Woods Branch Library roof became a sticking point for the selectmen because there is currently a committee reviewing plans to possibly renovate or rebuild the library.

"There's a potential for redundancy if there is a renovation project," Selectman Kevin Kiley said.

When the Library Board of Trustees last addressed the selectmen in April of 2012, they had suggested that the building be completely demolished and rebuilt to the tune of $13 million.

Selectman Cristin McCarthy Vahey said she wanted to check in with the Board of Trustees before pushing this proposal through to the other Board of Finance and RTM.  

Michelango explained that should that as long as the building's existing footprint remain -- should the library be renovated -- the proposed roofing project "would work."

"This roof has outlives its service live," Michelangelo said. "The library had had problems with leakages for years."

Ed McCourt, building maintenance supervisor for the Department of Public Works, agreed.

"The library has been leaking for seven years now and it's causing issues inside. They've thrown out a lot of books."

The board also tabled a  $125,000 proposal to hire a phone consultant to help put together a new phone system for the town and a $125,000 plan add more light fixtures to the town's tennis courts, pending further details.

The following projects -- now totaling $837,000 -- are up for discussion and a vote at tonight's Board of Finance meeting:

  • Installation of an emergency generator at Old Town Hall: $105,000
  • Design of a new bridge over Mill River (Duck Farm Road): $300,000
  • Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) improvements at the Reef Road Fire Station: $172,000
  • HVAC upgrades at Police Headquarters: $160,000
  • Bunker and tee box renovations at H. Smith Richardson Golf Course (part of a 10-year, $1 million upgrade project): $100,000
Sean O'Donnell January 08, 2013 at 06:06 PM
Home owners would be regarded as TOTALLY STUPID if they did not address a roof leak immediately, to protect the interior from damage. That goes for all commercial buildings too, building maintenance managers would be fired. Where is the LOGIC?
roy fuchs January 10, 2013 at 01:28 AM
sean,they are town employees. do you think half of them give a flying f-ck? overpaid,under worked. compare what they make compared to someone doing the same thing in the private sector. its like 3 times the rate. and you cant fire these clowns.
Joeseph Biff January 10, 2013 at 01:44 PM
Proper maintenance of the schools is also lacking.Look around the side roads when you enter I-95 going north from South Benson RD.Trash all over the place.When a problem starts,you have to "nip it in the bud" as the old saying goes.Our maintenance people don't have their "eye on the ball"
Sean O'Donnell January 10, 2013 at 02:28 PM
Our neighbor Westport, has a very efficient school building maintenance system. High production standards for employees, without excessive pay, good supervision. Their cost maintenance and efficiency are first class, their Taxpayers enjoy good Respect for their TAX DOLLAR.

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