CT BOND COMMISSION NEWS JULY 12, 2016...ARE WE READING THIS CORRECTLY? MORE MONEY TO WESTCOG?
NO, POST-ELECTION 2016 PROBABLY LESS MONEY IN 2017, BECAUSE THE CT BAD NEWS WAS "SAVED" FOR A LESS "POLITICAL" TIME...
Not to brag but...department
W E S T E R N C O N N E C T I C U T C
O U N C I L O F G O V E R N M E N T
S : We now (August 2021) attend WestCOG meetings virtually!!!
Contents: Please note that U.S. Census links do not work because the Bureau has changed them. It is a good exercise to search the Census website!
What's old is new again - ACIR Symposium from 2004.
LINK TO FIRST NATURAL DISASTER MITIGATION PLAN DURING SWRPA YEARS:
A L L B E T S A R E O F F :
How this Legislative Session makes Robin Hood almost look like a Republican - and radical Robespierre like the Democrat Governor and his henchmen.
OUR SUMMARY: CCM STOMPS ON SMALL TOWNS...
WestCOG chimes in...CCM Study FINAL EXECUTIVE SUMMARY above; earlier report: http://www.ccm-ct.org/sites/default/files/files/2016Bulletins_MunicipalFinance_final_rev.pdf
What will this bill end up saying, we wonder - https://www.cga.ct.gov/2016/PDdata/Tmy/2016SB-00090-R000219-Western%20CT%20Council%20of%20Governments%20-TMY.PDF
OP-ED | What CCM Means by ‘Collaborating for the Common Good’
by Joe DeLong | Jan 20, 2016 11:45am
"From various populations and geography, the Connecticut Conference of
Municipalities — CCM — brings together municipal officials to
collectively discuss the issues that face Connecticut towns and cities."
"...And CCM is calling on the State to take some
key additional steps, such as developing model regional cooperation
codes; increasing state financial and other incentives for
cost-effective intermunicipal and regional cooperation; empowering
Councils of Government to deliver services on a regional basis;
reinvesting in planning and technical assistance capacity at OPM;
eliminating the red tape and bureaucratic obstacles with state entities
that thwart municipalities’ ability to engage in regional cooperation
efforts; and making greater staffing investments in entities like the Connecticut Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations..."
S O M E T H I N G
S N E V E R C H A N G E
O R D O T H E Y ? S M A R T M O N
E Y I S O N T H E M A P
B E L O W ( R )
Western Connecticut Council of Governments, R.I.P.
To be or
not to be, that is the question. How many regions?
North-South, East-West? Or primary "driver" to find a $upportive $pending $ource for CT?
MAYOR AND FIRST SELECTMAN RACE RESULTS 2017 IN WESTCOG
Of the 18 towns, six (6) now have new members of WestCOG and three (3) of four (4) officers lost or retired from office.
CONTESTED (please note correction - Brookfield re-elected its First Selectman)
Bethel - Incumbent running for re-election
Bridgewater - reprise of 2015 at the top of the ticket - http://www.newstimes.com/local/article/Familiar-faces-square-off-for-Bridgewater-first-11958293.php
Brookfield - Incumbent running against major party candidate
Danbury - Incumbent running
Darien - Incumbent running with opposition
Greenwich - Incumbent running for re-election against Democrat;
the Internet provided information, but we had not
published until now: http://www.greenwichtime.com/local/article/Greenwich-Democratic-Party-withdraws-support-for-12239506.php
New Canaan - new Republican candidate against Democrat
New Fairfield incumbent we think running against major party opponent-
Incumbent running against cross endorsed Conservation Commission members
New Milford - Incumbent running against major party opponent
Newtown - Incumbent not running - contested
Norwalk - Incumbent running against multiple opponents
Stamford - Incumbent running with opposition.
Weston - incumbent running againt major party candidate
Westport - Incumbent running against more than one opponent
No Opponent (6 or 7 did not have an opponent two years ago)
SOURCE: CT MIRROR - https://ctmirror.org/2017/11/07/local-coverage-links-to-election-results-around-the-state/
MAYORAL & FIRST SELECTMEN RACES 2015/TURNOVER
All town charters, ordinances and regulations: http://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/ordinances.htm
3-way races in Greenwich and New Canaan, Darien,but without DEM candidate, we think!
EIGHTEEN (18) MEMBER TOWNS and possible changes in the order coming
Nov. 3 in nine. Those towns that did not change leadership
at the top in 2015 in BOLD
HAN NETWORK link:
News links supplied pre-election stories of interest. Interesting online link to results in Housatonic Valley towns: http://www.wcsu.edu/live/
Bethel - WON
Brookfield: More Brookfield news; LOST. NEVER EASY...
Greenwich - WON
New Fairfield - WON
New Milford - LOST - so here is a March 20, 2017 story about the administration of the victor: http://www.newstimes.com/local/article/New-Milford-must-find-1-55-million-after-budget-11013135.php
Norwalk - WON
Redding - WON
Weston - LOST
Wilton - WON (different candidate, still R)
WON - No major Party opponents for Ridgefield, Danbury, Darien (contested)...Newtown, Sherman, Bridgewater, New Canaan.
We believe Westport, Stamford (First Selectman and Mayor, respectively), have 4 yr. terms of office - 2013- 2017.
SOURCE: Online research and local knowledge:
NOTE: On the COG to this point,
all voting on important issues, in our opinion, is on a 10-8 basis -
and it would not appear that Nov. 3 results will change this!
What did 2016 Implementer bring?
M.B.R. REQUIREMENT change in lines 5441 - 5444. IMPLEMENTER being discussed now (Friday the 13th, 9:30PM). Then
Rep. Lavielle has COG question on "study" and forced merging of services
(mandates) and introduces motion - L.C.0.
6490 House Amendment 'B': Details mandate relief.
Flexibility requested. 2/3
vote for new mandates request. April deadline for Legislature's
budget to make it relevant for Towns. All presently offered is
State control one size fits all. Home Rule.
Discretion. Give this
back to towns.
SESSIONS, CONNECTICUT GENERAL ASSEMBLY: Senate
Thursday and...Friday the 13th for the House (and the Senate).
Votes taken in Senate Party line.
- THE IMPLEMENTER:
It has been published at last, and includes new ideas. The
IMPLEMENTER passed the Senate with a few changes to fix up typos.
AT LEASE THE REGIONAL PLANNING AGENCY FOR 8 TOWNS HAD 22 MEMBERS - 18 TOWN IN THE COG HAVE...18 MEMBERS!
Will the August meeting of the WCCOG actually take place or will it be another "telephonic"
gathering outside the view of the general public (in the sense that the
public must go to the former SWRPA offices in Stamford). No MPO
meeting for either former HVCEO or SWRPA towns...
What was in the Implementer?
- Did SB1 make it? Opposition and support on PILOT, property tax
aspects. As a "sSSB1" is got referred back and forth and
ultimately, did not pass, we think, but parts may have found their way
- MORE IMPLEMENTER: §§ 110-111 — REGIONAL SERVICES
GRANTS FOR COUNCILS OF GOVERNMENTS (COG): PA 15-244 (§ 207)
requires, beginning in FY 17, OPM to distribute regional services grants
to COGs on a per capita basis, based on the most recent Department of
Public Health population estimate. The bill eliminates the requirement
that these grants be distributed on a per capita basis, instead
requiring them to be distributed based on a formula determined by the
OPM secretary. PA 15-244 requires COGs to use the grants (1) for
planning purposes and (2) to achieve efficiencies in delivering
municipal services on a regional basis, including consolidating services
on a regional basis. EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2015.
- EVEN MORE IMPLEMENTER: § 160 — MUNICIPAL RIGHT OF
FIRST REFUSAL: The bill eliminates a provision specifically
requiring DOT, when preparing to sell excess property, to offer it first
to the town where it is located before putting it out for bid or
auction. (But DOT, as required by current law, must continue to offer
these properties to other state agencies before going to bid.)
Existing law, unchanged by the bill, requires any state agency selling
land to first notify, in writing, the chief executive officer or
officers of the municipality in which the land is located, as well as
the affected legislators, of their intention to sell the land. The town
has 45 days in which to express its intention to buy the property (CGS §
3-14b). EFFECTIVE DATE: Upon passage
- IT NEVER ENDS: § 219 — REGULATIONS REGARDING
VEHICLES OPERATING NEAR HORSES: The bill incorporates in statute
existing regulations regarding a motorist operating near a horse or
equestrian. The regulations (1) require such a motorist to reduce his or
her speed or stop to avoid endangering the equestrian or frightening or
striking the horse and (2) prohibit a motorist from blowing a horn or
causing loud or unusual noise in a manner to startle or frighten the
horse. By law, these provisions must be included in DMV's instruction
manual for motor vehicle operation. EFFECTIVE DATE: Upon passage
- SNOW JOB: § 226 — PENALTY FOR DUMPING SNOW IN
HANDICAPPED PARKING SPOTS: The bill prohibits a private parking
area owner or lessee or his or her agent from dumping or placing, or
allowing someone else to dump or place, accumulated snow in a
handicapped parking spot. Violators face a $150 fine for a first
violation, and a $250 fine for each subsequent violation. EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2015
- NO SNOW TO REGULATE? NO PROBLEM: § 414 —
SWIMMING POOL SAFETY: The bill creates a swimming pool assembler
license, generally subject to the same provisions governing the swimming
pool builder license under existing law. Under current law,
anyone who, for financial compensation, builds or installs permanent
spas or in-ground or partially above-ground swimming pools more than 24
inches deep must be licensed as a swimming pool builder and registered
as a home improvement contractor with the Department of Consumer
Protection (DCP). Once DCP adopts implementing regulations, this bill
extends the license and registration requirements to anyone who, for
financial compensation, assembles above-ground swimming pools more than
24 inches deep.
People assembling pools on their own residential property are exempt
from the requirements under the law and the bill. Also, the holder of a
swimming pool builder license or a limited swimming pool maintenance and
repair contractor license who applies for an pool assembler license
must be issued the license without examination and does not have to
complete any continuing education requirements to obtain an assembler
As is currently the case for the swimming pool builder licensee, the
bill prohibits the swimming pool assembler licensee from performing
electrical; plumbing and piping; or heating, piping, and cooling work
without being licensed to perform this type of work.
As is the case for the swimming pool builder, the initial fee for the
swimming pool assembler license is $150, and the annual renewal fee is
$100. The annual Home Improvement registration fee is $120, and the
required annual contribution to the Home Improvement Guaranty Fund is
The bill does not contain specific penalties for swimming pool assembler
license violations. But by law, DCP may impose penalties for
violations, such as license revocation and suspension on DCP licenses.
Under the bill, a swimming pool assembler licensee who violates the home
improvement contractor registration provisions is also subject to a
range of penalties.
Pool Assembler Regulations
By April 1, 2016, the bill requires the DCP commissioner to adopt
implementing regulations establishing the amount and type of experience,
training, continuing education, and examination requirements for
getting and renewing an assembler license.
Once DCP adopts regulations, the bill prohibits anyone from assembling,
for financial compensation, an above-ground swimming pool more than 24
inches deep, except on his or her own property, without first obtaining a
DCP-license and registering with DCP as a home improvement contractor.
After DCP adopts regulations, anyone who applies for a pool assembler's
license, by January 1, 2017, does not have to take a license
examination, provided his or her experience and training are equivalent
to that required to qualify for the examination under DCP regulations.
Home Improvement Registration Requirements
The bill requires the swimming pool assembler licensees to comply with
the home improvement contractor registration requirements.
By law, home improvement contractors must register with DCP and pay a
$220 annual fee, of which $100 goes to the Home Improvement Guaranty
Fund, which reimburses consumers (up to $15,000 per claim) unable to
recover losses suffered because the registered contractor failed to
fulfill a contract valued over $200 (CGS § 20-432).
Among other things, registered contractors must (1) include their
registration numbers in advertisements, (2) show their registration when
asked to do so by “any interested party,” and (3) use written contracts
that meet certain statutory requirements (CGS §§ 20-427(a) & 429).
Violations and Penalties
DCP may investigate refuse, suspend, or revoke a contractor's
registration and impose fines. It may impose civil fines ranging from
$500 for a first offense to $1,500 for third and subsequent offenses for
such things as working without a required registration or willfully
employing an unregistered individual ( CGS § 20-427(d)).
In addition, by law, certain violations involving (1) an element of
fraud are class B misdemeanors (punishable by a maximum of six months
imprisonment, a fine of up to $1,000 or both) and (2) over $10,000 are
class A misdemeanors (punishable by a maximum of one year imprisonment, a
fine of up to $2,000 or both). And the court may impose probation of up
to five years if the contractor cannot pay the restitution in full (CGS
Finally, a violation of the Home Improvement Act constitutes a violation
under the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA) (CGS §
EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2015
This is an example of how a COG can perform planning duties for towns.
New London enlists planning service from council of governments
By Greg Smith
Published July 16. 2015 3:44PM
Updated July 16. 2015 9:20PM
New London — Mayor Daryl Justin Finizio this week signed a contract with
the Southeastern Connecticut Council of Governments for professional
planning services while the city looks for a permanent city planner.
Under a contract approved by the City Council on July 6, planning
reviews and recommendations for the Planning and Zoning Commission will
be handled by SCCOG senior planner James Rabbitt.
Project management services, including technical support in planning for
the National U.S. Coast Guard Museum, will be assigned to SCCOG
consulting planner Thomas Wagner. Wagner worked as planner for Waterford
for three decades before his retirement in 2012.
Tammy Daugherty, New London’s development and planning director, said
the contract provides for essential services needed while the city looks
to replace former city Planner Harry Smith, who left the city last
month for a job as a planner in Branford...
Please search the New London DAY archives for the remainder of this story.
ISSUES: ORGANIZATIONAL, PHILOSOPHICAL AND POLITICAL - OUR OBSERVATIONS HERE...
The Architecture of Segregation
By THE EDITORIAL BOARD
SEPT. 5, 2015
Fifty years after the creation of the Department of
Housing and Urban Development — and nearly that long after the passage
of the Fair Housing Act of 1968 — the fight against the interlinked
scourges of housing discrimination and racial segregation in America is
far from finished. Economic isolation is actually growing worse across
the country, as more and more minority families find themselves trapped
in high-poverty neighborhoods without decent housing, schools or jobs,
and with few avenues of escape.
This did not happen by accident. It is a direct consequence of federal,
state and local housing policies that encourage — indeed, subsidize —
racial and economic segregation. Fair housing advocates have recently
been encouraged by a Supreme Court decision and new federal rules they
see as favorable to their cause. Even so, there will be no fundamental
change without the dismantling of policies that isolate the poor and
that Paul Jargowsky, a professor of public policy at Rutgers
University-Camden, and others call the “architecture of segregation.”
As things stand now, federally subsidized housing for low-income
citizens, which seems on its face to be a good thing, is
disproportionately built in poor areas offering no work, underperforming
schools and limited opportunity. Zoning laws in newer suburbs that rest
on and benefit from infrastructure built with public subsidies prevent
poor, moderate-income and minority families from moving in.
Discriminatory practices exclude even higher income minority citizens
from some communities...editorial in full: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/06/opinion/sunday/the-architecture-of-segregation.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=opinion-c-col-left-region®ion=opinion-c-col-left-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-left-region&_r=0
First Director resigns; new Director hired. First test of WCCOG to handle adversity - good job!
Director experienced regional planning in CT, with excellent
educational background, management experience and thinks on his
feet! SWRPA PLAN OF C&D (r) only available
thru site search - uploaded here.
The answer to whether Weston is "rural" or not...we're working on it! Read all about Sherman's issues here: http://www.newstimes.com/local/article/Sherman-residents-question-if-Full-Circle-Farming-5919841.php
REGIONAL TAX SHARING FOR NEW DEVELOPMENTS COMING IN SB1?
MUNICIPAL FACILITIES NEEDS AND STORMWATER
WCCOG (l) AND CT DEEP HEARING NEXT WEEK OR SO, WE THINK...
First Selectman busy on several fronts...DRAFT changes (in part above) in red work
for Weston! Thanks goodness!!!
From the point of view of a community such as Weston, which has neither
sewers nor public water lines, not a problem. However, in this
case, DEEP/EPA is talking about "municipal separation" of storm
sewers from septic sewers - something that has been accomplished
already, we think, in all parts of the former SWRPA region...
The most egregious
recommendation was for mandated leaf pick up; "Low-Impact
Development" mandated but moved back to 4 years instead of in 2
years...for comparisons in full: http://www.ctnewsjunkie.com/upload/2015/01/Comparisongrid.pdf
More fodder for development of "Speak Up" questions in today's FORUM?
STORM WATER ETC AND D.E.E.P REGULATIONS
CTNEWSJUNKIE article on proposed rev. changes: http://www.ctnewsjunkie.com/archives/entry/deep_revises_storm_water_permit/
A LESSON IN PROCESS:
NOT IN THE REGION: http://www.theday.com/local/20150906/preston-voters-to-decide-tuesday-on-funding-for-norwich-hospital-cleanup
State pollution plan could cost communities $100 million
Amanda Cuda, CTPOST
Updated 11:24 pm, Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Connecticut cities and towns are fighting a state measure to reduce
pollution from stormwater runoff, saying it could cost them more than
On Tuesday, the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities held a news
conference urging the state Department of Energy and Environmental
Protection to discuss its objections to a proposal aimed at cutting the
amount of pollutants, including petroleum residue and fecal matter, that
end up in municipal stormwater systems and, subsequently, rivers, lakes
and streams. DEEP will have a hearing on the proposal Wednesday morning
at its Hartford headquarters...story in full: http://www.ctpost.com/local/article/State-pollution-plan-could-cost-communities-100-5961283.php#photo-7278759
And earlier, from CTNEWSJUNKIE:
CCM President is among those who object to imposing implementation on
towns and cities...Public Hearing 12-17-14 79 Elm Street (DEEP)
So after the CCM press conference, covered by CTNEWSJUNKIE, The Day
rewrote their story, and we suspect will follow up with an in depth
report later this evening: http://www.theday.com/
The Connecticut Conference of Municipalities said the
Department of Energy and Environmental Protection’s draft permit to
regulate this runoff from municipal streets will cost 80 cities and
towns nearly $82 million...DEEP acknowledged that the draft permit would
be applied to smaller, less densely populated towns than federal law
“While federal law does not require the same standards for
communities with less population density, we believe it is important to
extend improved storm water management practices to them,” a spokesman
with DEEP said. “This will help improve the condition of many impaired
water bodies in rural areas and protect the condition of others that are
in better condition.”
WHAT WILL WESTON BE LIKE IN...2016 - THE NEXT TIME THE REGIONAL PLAN IS DONE; Will WestCOG survive long enough to do one?
NEWS: At the December 17, 2015 WestCOG meeting it was announced that the new Regional Plan had to be done...in 2025. So how come Greater Bridgeport COG, now "rebranded" ctmetro.org
Guess what? "Bethel police station cost estimate comes in over budget"
Link to article by Julia Perkins Updated 1:19 pm, Wednesday, October 12, 2016
THE AFTERNOON BEFORE THE RESULT, AT COG MEETING...HOW DO WESTON POLICE NUMBERS AND STATUS COMPARE?
If just the right number for Bethel was "reduced from $14 million" to
$13.5, and they have 26,000 sq ft for 37 officers and 12 civilians, on a
new site, how does this compare to Weston?
Voters approve funding for new police station
By Mackenzie Rigg
Updated 9:50 pm, Thursday, December 17, 2015
BETHEL — A long-debated new police station will soon become a
reality after residents on Thursday voted overwhelmingly in favor of
funding the project. They voted 1,831 to 1,078 to spend $13.5
million to build the new facility, according to unofficial results
announced at the town’s Municipal Center. This comes about a year after a
referendum for a $14.1 million version of the plan was defeated by 69
votes...story in full:
NEW BETHEL PD HEADQUARTERS (LOOK FAMILIAR?) GOES DOWN
Town Meeting approves two other proposals by large majorities...water
tank that will be reimbursed and an energy efficiency contract.
LINK TO REPORT POST REJECTION: http://www.bethel-ct.gov/filestorage/1190/83/10494/10616/2015-01-29m_sp_mtg.pdf
Bethel narrowly votes down new police station
Nanci G. Hutson
Updated 11:32 pm, Tuesday, December 9, 2014
BETHEL -- By 69 votes, taxpayers on Tuesday night rejected a proposal to
spend $14.1 million to build a new police station, dealing a blow to
those who believe the existing 8,500-square-foot facility is
inadequate...story in full: http://www.newstimes.com/local/article/Bethel-narrowly-votes-down-new-police-station-5946554.php#photo-7248497
Check the fine print lower left - same consultant that we are using!
Danbury News-Times: http://blog.ctnews.com/offbeat/2014/12/09/bethel-to-vote-on-20-million-in-town-projects/
HAZARDS AND COMMUNITY RESILIENCE WORKSHOP:
Weston, Wilton and New Canaan, November 18, 2014, Wilton Town Hall Annex
First Selectman Bill Brennan welcomed everyone...including Weston's Land
Use Director, P&Z, Fire Department, Nature Conservancy Director,
CL&P (seated near us)...
Weston base map always reminds me to thank goodness for the
Nature Conservancy and the Town, which purchases development rights
All bridges and areas subject to flooding identified by the end of the
day; dams located; ranking of hazards by concern to
Emergency agencies. And other categories.
Where the process began...in New Canaan.
Senior and challenged housing folks there in force, as was DPW, P&Z and town planner as well as State Senator.
Wilton was the host, and they had many staff present - we always learn a lot from their excellent professionals!
Where to begin with Wilton's hazards! Home to the major
transportation routes north-south in the new WCCOG, they had a lot to
put on a map!
Weston base data. Flood zones in pink.
Anyone who lives in Weston knows about the power of wind and storms to disrupt.
Mention was made of need for a plan protecting Weston and Westport should a natural disaster affect the Samuel Senior Dam.
why we were doing this exercise was the next step. Partial
answer: To meet FEMA requirements (always changing).
Introductory remarks and power point by Nature Conservancy leader.
Weston gets started - note Wilton representatives in the background.
The three towns began work, with Nature Conservancy staff taking notes with leadership involvement by WCCOG staff
And then there was CL&P and the power issue. With New Canaan in the background, Weston
Fire Chief and Weston P&Z discuss how G.I.S. may help their
All Weston danger spots now and in the future (5 yrs)
And the event both began and finished on time - bravo to Nature Conservancy/WCCOG organizers - a good sign!!!
Our bet - Coastal Communities and inland communities may differ.
What are the region’s worst natural hazards? Western CT council wants public input on survey
By Weston Forum on November 15, 2014
A Natural Hazard Survey has been released to solicit public feedback
regarding natural hazards in the state’s southwestern planning region.
The survey aims to identify the natural hazards of greatest public
concern, including vulnerable locations and potential mitigation
The Western Connecticut Council of Governments (WCCOG, formerly SWRPA)
is issuing the survey in conjunction with its ongoing Hazard Mitigation
Plan (HMP) efforts, a key planning document that keeps participating
municipalities eligible for many types of Federal Emergency Management
Agency (FEMA) funding...story in full: http://www.thewestonforum.com/23131/what-are-the-regions-worst-natural-hazards/
WESTERN CONNECTICUT COUNCIL OF GOVERNMENTS MEETING NOTES BY ABOUT TOWN - IN REVERSE CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER OR USE CONTENTS
Contents of Meeting Notes section (Italics were unofficial meetings prior to formal beginning of COG 1-15):
10-23-14, 11-20-14; 1-22-15; 2-19-15; 3-19-15; 4-16-15; 5-21-15; 6-25-15; 7-16-15; 8-20-15; 9-17-15; 10-22-15; 11-19-15; 12-17-15;
Combined Legislative Breakfast January 14, 2016
1-21-16, 2-18-16, 3-17-16; 4-21-16; 5-19-16; 6-16-16;
July meeting did not happen (office should be moving, too);
8-18-16 also cancelled; Regular Monthly Meetings now held at RVNA.
9-15-16; 10-20-16; 11-17-16 CANCELLED. 12-15-16; 1-23-17 LEGISLATIVE MEETING AND COG; 2-23-17;
AUGUST 21, 2021 WestCOG meeting (12:30pm to 1:34pm) held
virtually with those interested in following it being on the call -
listening only. The highlights:
- Regional Cooperation Grants and other ways to cooperated among
communities: Weston and Wilton HRRA cited as an example. This
structure is most permanent and not confined to WestCOG region.
Other familiar ways suggested including both central city invitation to
others and m0ulti-town partnerships for HHW and solid waste.
- Minutes approved.
- ASPETUCK LAND TRUST looks for Regional support for a different
Wilton-Weston 10 acre parcel to fit into the ALT greenbelt
- REGIONAL BROADBAND FUNDING coming;
- NEW LOCIP funding round starting tomorrow - applications by Oct. 1 signed by professional engineer.
- Other funding sources, comments on mask mandates (joint effort by Westport and Fairfield, around cities.
Next meeting September 23, 2021 virtual. Adjourned 1:34pm.
FEBRUARY 23, 2017 WestCOG meeting: A joint SWRPA-HVCEO MPO meeting first (transportation matters).
MPO heard from Woody Bliss
Weston's former First Selectman asked for help on opposing
off-reservation gambling bills by asking if there was some info on
traffic studies. The real proposal is for Bridgeport,
apparently. When HVCEO study was brought up and requested to be
part of the record, during public comment by Woody, I asked to be
recognized and reported that SWRPA had done an excellent report on
traffic effects on Trump casino proposal (IIRC) for Bridgeport too -
should be in WestCOG files.
WestCOG elected a new executive committee 2017
Thanks given to Bethel's First Selectman (l) who served two terms as WestCOG began...Darien's First Selectman (r) follows.
Staff reports on G.I.S., I.T. and other related matters and a tax
study; Legislative comment as well as full answers to any other
STAFF MOST IMPRESSIVE!
Tax Study is about technical ("back office") coordinations for most
efficient performance of Town tax collectors. Executive Director
asked to upload WestCOG comments on bills to the website.
(R) Not all cities agree...
STAMFORD TO GET WHAT IT THOUGHT IT WANTED WE SUSPECT
time in the region today as conclusion is "Watch the
There was discussion of cities v. suburbs and weighted voting on COGS -
of course, you all remember why communities were sold on the concept of a
COG, right? I can hear the siren song still...
This was the big item for me - I actually almost told everybody that they were being snookered again.
When given the opportunity to speak at the end, I pointed out that perhaps
The Emperor/Governor was not wearing any clothes - in the sense that no one wanted to say the State of CT
was effectively bankrupt???
Congratulations to new Chair. on finishing earlier than might have been
expected. And on conducting very significant roundtable on where
towns are with budget response to Governor.
NOTE: Meetings such as the one below taking place everywhere!
Please watch TRI-BOARD MEETING Feb. 13, 2017 for Weston.
REGIONAL LEGISLATIVE MEETING 2017 AND THEN WESTCOG MEETING
RVNA beginning at 8:30am Monday January 23, 2017
We had the flu and did not attend.
WestCOG G.I.S. rolling out!!!
December 15, 2016 meeting of WestCOG agenda
- big items include three varieties of dues, notice of Legislative
meeting at 8am in January and nominating committee formation.
PUBLIC COMMENT: About Town reported on "Temporary Health Care Structures Task Force" meetings observed on CT-N.
Note that Darien First Selectman interested in finding out more
among others. Initial meeting - to prepare legislative
proposal - second meeting reviews draft and approved "L.C.O. 231" for
Legislative model regulation submission.
State Health Department proposal to have 8 health districts on County
Boundaries instead of 72 town and multi-town districts.
This idea went over like a lead balloon. The
photos below show how unimpressed the COG was...and the discussion
carried on into an unpleasant one about dues and regional planning
organization format - again.
T H E B U C K S T O P S H E R E
We paraphrase, but smallest town says "we're 'outa here'" if Stamford's
idea passes...funding for next year a question at State and national
level at this point (r) and interesting data from Census; more to be provided by by G.I.S.
After well explained three examples, Mayor of Stamford asks for a fourth
method that would include a base amount everyone pays. Plus he want
weighted voting like they had in SWRPA.
ITEM: Dues structure based on: population-land varieties by % - (A) 50-50, (B) 55-45, and (C) 60-40.
If I recall correctly, regarding "land" area, Darien, as the smallest town in former SWRPA as well as WestCOG
would prefer 60-40, New Milford, the largest town (land area), might go for
50-50. Weston is the third "smallest" contributor to WestCOG
budget in all three versions. Lowest for Weston (C).
2017 schedule WestCOG; Agenda 12-15-16
Over before 2pm.
We asked what's up (report in ADVOCATE) - CTDOT provided this: WestCOGStamfordStationTOD10-20-16.PDF
New site for these monthly meetings - the RVNA building in Ridgefield, 27 Governor Street
October 20, 2016 meeting, 12:30pm WestCOG
Ridgefield Visiting Nurses Association ("RVNA")welcome
New permanent meeting room for WestCOG also in Ridgefield.
A REFRESHING ADMISSION THAT REGIONAL SOLUTIONS DEPEND ON OVERCOMING LABOR AGREEMENTS, LEGISLATIVE TENDENCIES
CCM Executive Director tries to sell the CCM concept of "everyone sitting at the
table and then unanimously agreeing to the study now underway"...that may very well end up working against their towns.
SKEPTICAL MAYORS AND FIRST SELECTMEN
Pictures sometimes don't need captions! After this item the
regular meeting moved swiftly through the usual types of issues - soup
to nuts!!! Budgeting 101 for Regional Entities from the Treasurer,
new way to bill for operations of regional entities - former SWRPA
towns take a hit because...JMO...SWRPA dues lower because it generated much more outside money/grants
due to its railroad, waterfront, turnpike remediation and contributed
energy if not $$ from businesses in Stamford (& Norwalk as well as
DUES STRUCTURE BASED ON U.S. CENSUS (BELOW 2010 CENSUS) POPULATION FIGURES AND ALSO ACTUAL SIZE BY AREA.
First discussion...proposal by Treasurer.
Future WestCOG dues structure as 50% area and 50% population brings
groans from some - generally, the former SWRPA town get big increases -
with I think New Milford also - but the numbers are not for publication.
Meeting of WestCOG finished just after 2pm.
Are they in their new office space yet??? YES but still in boxes. There will be an "open house" at some time in October.
September 15, 2016 meeting, 12:30pm WestCOG
Bethel Library Community Room is the location. Joint MPO meeting at 11:30am.
We note that long-time members of the planning staff of former SWRPA organization as well as HVCEO have left.
TRAFFIC COUNTS FROM STREAMING VIDEO (REMEMBER WE THOUGHT THAT A DRONE WOULD BE HANDY...)?
Exciting or should I say dynamics reports from
engineering/transportation/GIS staff members given - plus news of new
technology for doing traffic counts!!!
NEWS - SEPARATE SCHOOL TAX STATE WIDE COMING?
Meeting had opened with Mayor Boughton announcing that the State of CT
is appealing and it will be heard in early January 2017. Then he
reported that CCM has formed two committees to react and come up with a
substitute or two or three (early study here).
We note that CCM committee includes Danbury and Stamford - when asked,
CCM Chair. says everyone is welcome to attend meetings. He also noted CT Tax Panel consultant
(didn't have the name...was it Michael Bell?) but he has hired thru CCM
this consultant to go further with his tax panel recommendations in
time for the upcoming Session.
NEWTOWN IS NEW HOME FOR COG OFFICE
The official opening of the offices will be in October!
Next meeting location not settled, but it will be on October 20th.
June 16, 2016 meeting in Ridgefield Library
Interestingly, a quorum was present minus only New Canaan. These had just been a well attended M.P.O. Joint Meeting.
M.P.O. members and guests enjoy lunch...
Two meetings with lunch "sandwiched" in-between?
There could be a study of the comparative value of joint M.P.O. meetings prior to WestCOG meetings...
An offer one really can't refuse!!!
D.E.C.D. presentation on Brownfield permit facilitation. Ombudsman presented for State Agency.
OPM Study of Weighted Voting on COG due by Dec. 1, 2016...
In review of minutes of previous meeting, rewording still needed to
express the precise meaning of changes made re: voting by other than
Mayor-First Selectman, which may provide basis for testimony in time for
No meeting expected for July.
MAY 19, 2016 WESTCOG MEETING IN RIDGEFIELD LIBRARY
A quorum was present and the meeting began at 12:31PM. with a
presentation by CCM staff of what happened in the Legislature. We
note that WestCOG is might or might not be filled in on Sec118 of Implementer below:
"State Budget and Legislative Session in Review" below
Presenters explained the intricacies of changes to various
programs. About Town's comment: Apparently, for fiscal
reasons "the names have been changed to protect the innocent" on several
programs to make them virtual "Legislative mules." Every trick in
the book was played to make it under the strictures of one rule or
another...including the spending cap. The professional staff
advice was not always followed. Which is not a surprise to me!
BY-LAWS CHANGED TO MAKE STAMFORD HAPPY
One example of Special Session magic was related to voting power on a COG - this was one of the last items on the agenda.
WILL VOTING POWERS ON COG TO CHANGE AFTER THIS OPM STUDY?
CTDOT LIVE NOW!
Thursday April 21, 2016 WestCOG meeting in Ridgefield Library.
- New offices to be in Newtown (in Victorian Building like this [r])
- Bylaws tweaked a bit more, so another review for next month. This is re: Stamford voting with non-CEO rep.
- Report on transportation/planning and GIS - all very exciting.
- Hospitals rep explains opiate and other issues as relates to budget and best use of funds.
- Legislature/Governor only give more to regions to do, less $$ to Towns - all in an effort to keep the good ship "Land of Steady Habits" afloat?
Excellent news of coordination of aerial data and upcoming availability
from GIS staff (not shown) and Executive Director - who announced that
WestCOG had successfully negotiated a lease for Newtown property for
combined headquarters for staff. Meetings for agency to continue
in Ridgefield, a more central location. So new location will move
the organization from Stamford, in the former SWRPA region, to HVCEO
area, for staff. Summer intern 2016 from Princeton, computer engineering,
and appears multi-talented.
Very interesting discussion, second reading, of changes proposed by
Stamford to WestCOG bylaws. Compromise proposed by Mayor of
Danbury - this centered around City of Stamford preferring the
SWRPA-style representation to HVCEO construct. We note that there
was weighted voting in SWRPA, with cities of Norwalk and Stamford
with 4 representatives each, medium size Greenwich and Westpprt with
three, and the small towns with 2 each. In a COG, every town gets
And then the item about ECS funding came up. There was much
annoyance and anger expressed, and Weston First Selectman reported on
her 2 hour ATBM the previous evening. NEXT MEETING May 19th.
WestCOG: APRIL 21, 2016 - NO AGENDA YET POSTED (LEGITIMATELY SO) BUT LISTED FOR APRIL 21, 2016, 12:30-2PM, RIDGEFIELD LIBRARY
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE DISCUSSED, MET, AND ONE ITEM WAS"AGENDA"
WestCOG March 17, 2016 meeting, Ridgefield Library...new CTDOT WEBSITE COMING.
W O W , W H A T A M E E T I N G
How the CTDOT Commissioner attended the M.P.O. meeting and took up more time than everything else on the agenda.
Good news on Merritt Seven Train Station - RAIL - TRANSIT - "fastrak" - auto (ride) - so glad they got this "branding" done. St. Patricks Day visit by leprechaun
Wilton, Darien, Bethel on train lines - does this issue affect
them? CTDOT wall display on both walls - like "'Modified Eminent Domain'
Wall to Wall"
Hey no problem - State of CT parking lots at locally operated
stations (or is the the reverse) - in either case, both entities
involved. Commissioner explains how his operation runs with one
staff member answering phones, making coffee, policy and answering local
political leaders' questions 9-5...please call him directly - "Press
One for Commissioner Redeker."
NO LONGER "EMINENT DOMAIN ON STEROIDS" OR NOT EXACTLY?
Then after the Commissioner left, there was "public involvement" update on
the very bill he had just been claiming was "cool" may not be?
No one mentioned that the quorum was disappearing...almost.
Bike-Ped took some time, although he didn't seem to have been
listening to the Commissioner tell everyone there were no problems.
BYLAWS FIRST READING PASSES WITH MINOR CHANGE;
Stamford Mayor asks for "dispensation" in bylaws of not being allowed to have an
alternate who is staff attend for C.E.O. Then the items that had to be acted upon
for timely notification on grants matters...
"Erin go BRIE?
New agency digs contract
action taken. With 11 members
remaining after 2pm - vote 8-3 in favor of leaving Stamford Government Center
for preferred Newtown location...
Adjourned after 2pm.
H I G H L Y C H A R G E D M E E T I N G ; F I R S T J O I N T M . P . O . M E E T I N G F O L L O W E D W E S T C O G M T G .
About Town notes that here we had an example
of why the weighted voting at an R.P.A. structure was a better
deal for cities!
Students' eye view of transportation as it relates to the downtown
Stamford UCONN campus. Study of how students commute. Was well received by
professional staff and Chairman. Professor Harmon's students work also explored how railroad parking was doing..
Details and funds that will be withdrawn if not used - but no
assurance that any more funding will follow the start-up year or two.
Running the meeting and keeping the new COG afloat from a financial
point of view must be an interesting balancing game! Keeping the
record clear as to what exacting transpired is really important, too!!!
Then came the fun part! It was cities versus big towns...and then first Joint M.P.O. meeting during the formal existence of WestCOG.
But unlike SWRPA, R.I.P., in a COG every CEO gets just one
vote...nonetheless, Stamford and Danbury not present, so Norwalk and
Darien, actually, spoke well for their case for putting aside "unfunded
mandates" issue over part-time Election Moderator to be hired by COG but
paid by CT - "one size fits all" mentioned. And then it was over,
without covering the full agenda...on to M.P.O. business (About Town
left at this point).
NOTE: Elected Officials bridled at being told what to do
with State "pass-through" money...not to mention...well, we won't go
W E S T C O G H I T T I N G I T S S T R I D E ?
January 21, 2016 Regular Meeting of the WestCOG organization
Meeting began on time didn't have to wait for a quorum!
Getting through the early parts of the agenda including adding topics
for action on banking resolution and bylaws second reading. Exec.
Director and staff communicated data sets on traffic issues;
elections held and all officers remained except for Tresurer, now
Newtown First Selectman. Interesting to hear discussed what About
Town knows about re: How SWRPA had handled its
finances a lot better than HVCEO, perhaps because funds for
transportation in the east-west corridor mas mucho compared to
north-south? But we digress...
ENVIRONMENT AND PUBLIC SAFETY ACTIONS FROM PLANS ONE IDEA!
Those matters beyond town borders and even regional borders attended to
by staff but also skilled and especially experienced town leaders.
And then staff took everyone thru the Northeast Corridor plans...
Not a "no action" alternative, but smaller plans for limited budgets...
Alternative One works well for WestCOG but in order to speed up travel
in the NEC, South-East corridor gets major changes. But...one of
the ways this is accomplished is new "Shoreline East" route...
Shoreline East has loops upon loops and very slow speeds as it is.
No takers in the room for alternative two - some discussion at this
point of next Legislative Session seeking to accomplish Transportation
Strategy Board wish to control areas receiving State of CT major parking
HOW ABOUT "THE BIG PICTURE" (THE ONE WITH LITTLE OR NO DETAILS...)???
Alternative Three drew some interest as well as support for #1 (it
seemed that everyone preferred #1) and by the way, Stamford has a lot to
watch out for in the Transportation Strategy Board's recommendations,
too - and the proposed not made in writing to change the bylaws to
permit others than Mayors and First Selectmen to vote (doesn't this
sound like the old SWRPA arrangement???) was obviously getting some who
were at the Regional Legislative Breakfast annoyed...and good for
What was that that Otto Von Bismark is reputed to have said? "You should never see how laws and sausages are made."
Good symbol for COG process above as it gets manipulated by Legislature/Governor in 2016..
NEXT MEETING FEB. 18, 2016, Ridgefield Library.
Although we are given to understand that there is one being held by Stamford independently.
FIRST JOINT WestCOG LEGISLATIVE BREAKFAST, 8:30am to 10am???
"You should never see how laws or sausages are made" is an old
saying. In CT, especially the day after G.E. announced its
departure for Boston, no one was very pleased with the thought of what
tomorrow will bring. Captions for picture below.
HOT POTATOES (l) AND "YOU SHOULD NEVER SEE HOW LAWS AND SAUSAGES ARE MADE"
And the scrambled eggs steamed away (see below) as legislators spoke
passionately of their frustrations with where "The Land of Steady
Habits" was descending, fiscally. Like being on the thin ice of
the West Branch of the Saugatuck!
THAT VERY AFTERNOON, THERE WAS AN "OOPS" MOMENT FROM OPM ON SPECIAL SESSION "BALANCED" BUDGET
Both Greenwich (which was represented here, too) and Stamford appeared to be at the Stamford event,
but Norwalk's Mayor Rilling came here first. What we can all look
forward to in the Short Session coming Feb. 3rd?
NORWALK AND DANBURY MAYORS PRESENT, GREENWICH REPRESENTED
Whether from former SWRPA towns or HVCEO towns, state senators present agree the
process is broken and no one appears to be fixing it in the right way.
WestCOG LIST OF INTERESTS
As report read aloud, legislators "scramble" to read the detail - one
legislator later reminded the assembled COG officials that they should
remember to write a joint letter ASAP on the importance of improvements
to Danbury Branch. As well as possible application of TOD there, too (my
point had anyone asked me).
AND ONE MORE THING...OPIATES AND THE LADDER OF ADDICTION.
Ironically, the Legislative Breakfast was in the party wing of this popular venue for summer weddings, etc.
AFFORDABLE HOUSING AND LEGAL FEES
New Democrat Mayor of Brookfield (in blue sweater) asked for help and
advice regarding 8-30g - noted that his town's site was less than an
acre and the request wss for hundreds of apartments. He noted that
he was sorry that his community had infrastructure (public water and
sewer). And then it was all over!
December 17, 2015 - AGENDA (including back up) : https://westcog.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/2015-12-17_WestCOG-Meeting_Full-Packet_for-Posting.pdf
WestCOG comes to Weston!
A full meeting with lots accomplished. After a year, COG
functioning more like a BIG WHEEL! Meeting began on time without a
quorum, but soon after more towns were there than had even been
anticipate! Only New Canaan and Bridgewater
NOT in attendance. Stamford and Norwalk representatives NOT mayors sat at the table but we assume did not vote.
BIG AGENDA, BIG ISSUES
First up was news of the Regional Elections position created by the
Legislature in 2015. An unfunded mandate, of course.
then lots of talk from guests on regional water planning. And
8-30g win reminder made and question whether this is going to be
important to the new water planning effort?
- Business of meeting amends a minor change to bylaws.
- A broad discussion
of future dues takes time to explain, and in the end, WestCOG decides to
leave dues as is for the coming year because local budget process has
begun in several towns, and it would be more trouble than it is worth to
try to make a decision at this meeting. First Selectman Llodra
moves to table the issue and requests written explanation for new
formula next time discussed.
Executive Director reports - my comments below, not his.
- Requests proforma approvals for grants or grant applications
as listed on agenda; remember SWRPA "gift" of remainder of its G.I.S
(shown above).to HVCEO? In
order to make both G.I.S. info equal in detail, completion for former
Housatonic Valley towns to be funded by OPM - one of those OK'd.
- Another, dues formula, requiring a deeper understanding of
use of regional funds
and available funds while waiting for State and Federal sources to pay
up! You have no idea how complicated this is - both State and
National governments drag their feet - they are worse than dead
beats. Yes, if you live long enough, they will pay up if you are
lucky, but meanwhile staff has to be paid out of regional agency's
savings (which are also supposed to be there for matching grant purposes
- a very complicated process).
Government funded grants and how their use is managed is beyond the
experience of most Mayors and First Selectmen who came from the private
- Not to mention
the need for statement of how the dues formula was developed and why it
is the way it is. And I assume this would be circulated in advance
- but of course no group discussion via conference call...F.O.I.A.
violations to be avoided (just my though).
ABOVE AN EXAMPLE OF ITALIANATE VICTORIAN STYLE
Discussion of new WestCOG office space and vote to (unofficially) approve the proposed move to building off I-84 in Newtown.
Library (a library seeking to update itself) site of Jan. 21, 2016 WestCOG
meeting. And we thought we picked up the news that this may be the
regular meeting spot monthly in the future. Certainly the First
Selectman of Greenwich (above left) has been the best sport all year,
even giving up his town's "opportunity" to host a WestCOG meeting since
the northern towns are so far away!
NOTE: In the days of
SWRPA, Greenwich SWRPA members had terrific attendance, whether meetings
were held in Norwalk or Stamford.
Approved in principle; formal OK on lease later.
Historic new digs?
Italianate Victorian style as seen in Hudson, N.Y. WestCOG office
building is sited more dramatically if Google Earth or Streetview shows it
Immediately after WestCOG adjourned the Southwestern CT MPO began its session...
How's that again?
Yes, both Wilton and Weston were represented by immediate past First
Selectmen to help make the transition to new administrations "seamless."
November 19, 2015: AGENDA and previous month's minutes here - https://westcog.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/2015-11-19_WestCOG-AgendaMtgPkg_final-Rev.pdf
THIS ROOM WAS NOT MUCH MORE COMMODIOUS THAN THE COMMISSION ROOM IN WESTON TOWN HALL...
Welcome to Danbury City Hall from Mayor, presentation of Danbury
history and a Danbury city mug. FYI - the parking isn't any better
than in Weston Town Hall-Library lot.
Call for Solar applications and a unified form in all towns.
Eversource looks as if they are considering applying...but no, they were
there to mention that prices for winter service will be lower than last
News of new location for WestCOG - to be in Newtown, which is good for some and less good for others, we suspect.
Weston, Bridgewater and New Fairfield have no SLOSSS sites (as in Weston
plus the last town to be "dry" and the hometown of Weston FORUM
Next meeting scheduled for Weston Dec. 17, 2015. And Cobb's Mill Inn
suggested as site for Legislative meeting January 16th (snow day 18th).
AT THE WestCOG
WestCOG meets October 22, 2015 at 12:30pm for perhaps the last
time at same building as former SWRPA offices in the Government Center in Stamford.
FIRST ON THE AGENDA WAS WATERSHED PROGRAM DISCUSSION: Hazard mitigation workshop held by SWRPA in 2014 link.
The COG heard from the Nature Conservancy re: Long Island Sound
and their study of contributors to degrading of water quality in the
Sound. Closely watched, COG members chimed in...
One thing the speaker noted was that their computer "model" didn't work in
all areas feeding into L.I.S. In particular, results from Long Island
septic disposal systems (including wells & cesspools) on Nitrogen
Loading (example below used in Peconic Estuary [L.I.]) are probably not
going to be the same accuracy in the different soils in Connecticut
SOMEONE SAY SEPTIC SYSTEMS SHOULD BE REPLACED WITH...WHAT?
Wait a minutes says Ridgefield and Darien and Weston...what are you suggesting to save the seagrasses? Report in the Greenwich TIME: http://www.greenwichtime.com/news/article/Study-Shorefront-development-imperils-6586150.php
THIS ITEM WAS SHELVED (ALTHOUGH THE DRAFT WAS DISTRIBUTED) UNTIL THE NOVEMBER MEETING OF WestCOG
"Item 5a: Consideration of unelected COG representatives."
TO WANTING TO SEE THE RESULTS OF NOV. 3rd ELECTION, WE ASSUME! No
decision made and not discussed, so we didn't ask for a copy..
decisions about anything else were made either, including new office
(both choices somewhere in Newtown). Meeting was held in Stamford
Center - which had recently seen the Planning Commission give an
unfavorable review of new suggestion for a (R - we believe this is a map
of the Harbor Point area) boatyard replacement to the Stamford Zoning
New website for COG coming soon...designed for mobile devices as well as
use by more traditional equipment: WORD PRESS used in in-house redesign.
THURSDAY SEPTEMBER 17, 2015. HOST COMMUNITY LOCATION: REDDING COMMUNITY CENTER,
37 LONETOWN ROAD.
Revised agenda here.
About a two hour meeting filled with information from both guests and staff.
Regional daytime population - from Journey to Work data from the U.S. Census, we assume.
News on move
for office - looking for 3 - 5000 sqft. And down to 4 or 5 sites
in Danbury-Newtown area. Doing website design in-house.
NEXT MEETING IN STAMFORD...quite a trek for WestCOG members coming from former HVCEO towns.
WE NOTE THIS SLIDE FROM PARTNERSHIP FOR STRONG COMMUNITIES' POWER POINT
FORMER GUEST OF "ABOUT TOWN" IS ON THE AGENDA FOR A PRESENTATION (HE HAD BEEN INVITED TO SWRPA AT ITS MEETING IN WESTON SOME YEARS AGO)
Meeting in New Canaan Thursday August 20, 2015...http://nebula.wsimg.com/bb1274394780f4583afd35f5c7706481?AccessKeyId=9F35ADC83CFAA5FBE2A4&disposition=0&alloworigin=1
At the Board of Selectmen it was announced that WestCOG would be
consolidating offices in Danbury./Newtown area by the end of the year,
when SWRPA Offices lease is up. In addition, speaker David Fink
handed out Partnership's data from its website. A link here: http://www.pschousing.org/files/PSC_SuburbanCT.pdf
On the agenda were a number of items of interest but only one item for
action - approval of the minutes of the telephonic meeting of the
previous month. The informational items and staff presentations:
What happened at the WCCOG - now "branded" as W E S T C O G -
meeting Thursday July 17, 2015?
Meeting was telephonic and lasted less than half and hour. DRAFT minutes: http://nebula.wsimg.com/cb13a15ec5dc1657cd22134c1070ecaf?AccessKeyId=9F35ADC83CFAA5FBE2A4&disposition=0&alloworigin=1
AGENDA AND BACKUP INFO ON BUDGET HERE.
What happened at the WCCOG - now "branded" as W E S T C O G -
meeting Thursday June 25, 2015? DRAFT minutes: http://nebula.wsimg.com/cb13a15ec5dc1657cd22134c1070ecaf?AccessKeyId=9F35ADC83CFAA5FBE2A4&disposition=0&alloworigin=1
Considering that the Special Session will not have taken place
yet, and that no one is certain what will appear in the "Implementer" of
the budget, our guess is "not much." And we were correct!
Meanwhile, this will be the meeting where the new combined budget of
former SWRPA and former HVCEO will be presented to the W E S T C O G
board, electronically (they had it in advance, as the general public
does, too!). A necessary if not exciting meeting!
Does the new combined budget leave everyone "whole" or are there winners
and losers for the 18 towns? (For example, Darien will probably
pay more in dues, because SWRPA formula included the SIZE-AREA of the
member town - to compensate Darien for its density.)
We are reading the budget as proposed now...but FYI. it was approved.
NEWTOWN MAY 21, 2015
Two hour meeting. WCCOG met in Newtown...at former Fairfield Hills campus.
FORMER FAIRFIELD HILLS STATE HOSPITAL
Council Chambers used for the WCCOG meeting.
I LIKED HIM FROM THE FIRST - TALKED DIRECTLY TO HIS AUDIENCE THE MEMBERS OF WCCOG
Commissioner of CT DOT explains "Let's Go CT" and puts it in perspective and thankfully does it without Power Point.
AND THEN QUESTIONS
Following came his answers, and what it told me was that CT in
indeed about to become a backwater - why do I feel this way? Because
there are so many basic problems with our infrastructure that even if we
fixed them and improved them CT would still be a backwater. But
that isn't necessarily a bad thing considering that Global Warming may
eventually wash away infrastructure anyway!
STAMFORD ANNOUNCES IT IS WORKING ON CHANGING BYLAWS FOR SUBSTITUTES REPS TO WCCOG
The cities are perhaps growing antsy with the speed of action at WCCOG
(Danbury's representative above)...we note that SWRPA, which gave the
cities extra votes for population in formulating its board, nonetheless
had most steady attendance from suburban towns.
...INFLUENTIAL NEWTOWN FIRST SELECTMAN, WHO ALWAYS
SEEMS TO BE ON THE MONEY WITH HER POINTS, SAYS SHE WILL SUPPORT
New staff hires announced and argument for crossing
regional boundaries to do "consulting" for Northern Hills COG going
north once again debated and tabled.
WCCOG APRIL 16, 2015 IN DARIEN MATHER CENTER THURSDAY LUNCHTIME. REPORT ON LEGISLATIVE SESSION HERE.
WCCOG - MOST ALL TOWNS PRESENT FOR 4th OFFICIAL MEETING
Darien Town TV covers it. On vimeo: https://vimeo.com/125264179
Present: New Fairfield, Sherman, Newtown, Bridgewater,
Stamford, Bethel, Darien, Greenwich, Danbury, Brookfield, Redding, New
Milford, Ridgefield, Norwalk, Westport and maybe New Canaan? HVCEO-area MPO met prior to the WCCOG meeting.
WCCOG meeting began by approving previous meeting minutes. Next was invited guest speaker...
Capitol Region COG purchasing coo-op director speaks to WCCOG.
PUBLIC COMMENT #1: Stamford parking garage
collapse - so when is it going to be fixed? CTDOT responds as
does Mayor Martin. Too soon to know - could be weeks, could be
never. In any event, the traffic study for bus, shuttles and
jitney service will not be impacted because they use trip modelling and
computers nowadays for transportation planning and the specific traffic
in the present situation does not apply.
And following up on Saturday, this story #2 on Commuter Council meeting Wednesday night on the Stamford garage status: http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/news/article/More-questions-about-Stamford-s-transit-oriented-6207415.php
Stamford Advocate story #1 here
DOT staff gives news and Mayor defers to CTDOT. They don't know
yet how long it will take to repair if at all. WCCOG action on closure of 1985 garage? Not yet.
PUBLIC COMMENT #2: AN ACT CONCERNING PROPERTY TAX REFORM - SB1136 to be heard Tuesday April 21 at 2pm LOB Room 2E - TEXT OF RAISED BILL ONLINE
WCCOG Mayors (and candidates elsewhere) of cities are not in favor of strong draft on property tax reform, and we'd bet, on PILOT or TOD.
Rep.Gail Lavielle reports to WCCOG: HB6851, SB1 - morphs into a new form. Features of both now to be
included in AN ACT CONCERNING PROPERTY TAX REFORM 2pm Tuesday, April 21st public hearing, LOB Room 2E by
Finance, Revenue and Bonding.
This includes the two big topics we've been mentioning - sharing
the car tax. Sharing regionally via a formula based on OPM criteria
PILOT replacement $$, plus giving regions the option to share tax
revenue (i.e. hotel tax)...or who knows? As it is drafted the bill, IMO,
leaves it to OPM to do the heavy lifting and make decisions - which is
actually similar to SB880, but with short review time until Short Session to report out new policies. Watch out for "Implementer Bill" again.
WORK FLOW ON COG AGENDA: Approve
bills, studies and other necessary items to keep organization
running. Going forward: First, where will staff work?
Second, what work will they be doing?
OFFICE LOCATION, HOW STAFF IMPACTED
Very interesting discussion, with both former regions' political leaders
expressing concern about jumping into commitments until there has been
an evaluation of staff available to perform jobs already signed up
for - the example being the Westport Bus Study.
COMING NEXT MONTH...IN THE FORMER HVCEO AREA
Next meeting, scheduled for Newtown, will have DOT Commissioner James P.
Redeker plus Secretary of the State Denise Merrill. And then
they'll try to get through their agenda - so is this helping the local
officials gain power in Hartford? Actually, no. Since the
suburban towns are on one side of many issues and the cities on the
other, regions can no longer speak in one voice unless they do like the
League of Women Voters and take action only after consensus. Which
is very time consuming to try to achieve.
March 19, 2015 WCCOG MEETING
VICE CHAIR PRESIDING IN NEW MILFORD TOWN HALL COUNCIL CHAMBERS
What happened at the COG? First it was a full agenda and they
added items plus there was healthy discussion and vote to support
opposition to HB 6851 - About Town had been planning to say
something in the Public Input section of the program, but we decided not
to - and just as well, because although we were sure everyone was aware
of it, mentioning such a hot topic early is never a good idea.
6851 is the Governor's bill to take away planning functions of
municipalities and give them to an appointed authority - appointed
by the Governor to include the Governor's and the Majority and Minority
of both House and Senate...and give them eminent domain powers plus
power ro bond...all along wide swathes along train tracks and I believe
wording sufficiently vague as to apply to bus routes, too? With a
area too of "walking distance to the train type length???
TABLED ITEM OK'D
Two Stamford staff members present (one shown, left), along with WCCOG staff to explain why the study of bus,
shuttle and jitney service near Stamford Transportation Center is
needed. CTDOT present (right) to support it, too. No one mentioned
the Urban Transitway project, but inquiring minds wonder if there is a
connection? And maybe the breaking news about Tuesday, April 14, 2015 closure of 1985 parking structure related, too?
LEGISLATIVE REPORT GIVEN BY WESTON RE: TESTIMONY FROM C.O.S.T. ON
BILL DISCUSSED BELOW...STAFF CHIPS IN NEW IDEAS ON STUDYING REGIONALISM.
Rep. Jason Rojas of P&D Committee
LEGISLATIVE REVIEW SKILLS OF FORMER TRANSPORTATION PLANNER,
WHO MIGHT HAVE GIVEN THEM THE HEADS UP SOONER ON BILLS (LAST ITEM -
ADDING STAFF)? .
And they added
items. Plus there was healthy discussion and vote to support opposition
to HB 6851 - (About Town had been planning to say something in the
Public Input section of the program, but we decided not to - and just as
well, because although we were sure everyone was aware of it,
mentioning such a hot topic early is never a good idea). NEW BRITAIN-HARTFORD BUSWAY STORY - LANGUAGE USED IN BILL.
P&D BILLS COMING OUT OF COMMITTEE WE FOUND OUT ABOUT ON OUR OWN...THANKS REP. ROJAS (PICTURED ABOVE)!
HB 6851 is the
Governor's bill to take away planning functions of municipalities and
give them to an appointed authority - appointed by the Governor to
include the Governor's and the Majority and Minority of both House and
Senate...and give them eminent domain powers plus power ro bond...all
along wide swathes of train tracks with a set back area too...more
later. S.B.1 is the state-wide "car tax" idea.
Lawmakers walk back transit plan
Alex Gecan, Danbury News-Times
Published 2:04 pm, Saturday, March 21, 2015
After backlash from state lawmakers over a perceived overreach of
eminent domain, a joint committee may walk back key provisions in the
governor's proposal to create a new Transit Corridor Development
State Sen. Cathy Osten, D-Sprague, who co-chairs the Planning and
Development Committee of the General Assembly, announced Friday that the
Office of Policy and Management had helped tailor Gov. Dannel P.
Malloy's proposal, striking the section that would have empowered the
authority to seize property near transit sites.
Among other alterations, Osten's office wrote that "language is added
that clarifies that municipal zoning, subdivision or wetland regulations
apply for developments on private or municipal land, just under current
law." But it is unclear whether that language will empower the state to
ignore the wishes of local zoning authorities on property the state
owns, such as the parcel at Stamford's train station.
"Part of the lawmaking process is to receive a proposal, get public
input on it and make it better. I believe that's what we've done in this
case," Osten said in a statement Friday.
"I had conversations with Sen. Osten about it and she told me what she
was doing, and we had discussions about it," said state Sen. Bob Duff,
D-Norwalk, the Senate majority leader.
"I think that having the eminent domain piece of it taken out is
important, as well as the other changes that were made today," Duff
said. "I think they address many, if not all, the concerns that people
have on the substance of the legislation."
SWRPA BROUGHT A "DOWRY" TO THE NEW REGION - WHICH IS PAYING FOR GIS OF FORMER HVCEO AREA
And the usual discussion of how the two organizations in previous lives
have been meshing...and then it was gone to a later Exec Committee
session for real estate. After running over until 2:45pm instead of 1:30pm. Which
made me even more pleased (it was an excellent meeting) that I had not
taken up time during Public Input...next month in Darien.
City of Danbury couldn't get on the meeting, so they stayed close to the Chairman's cell phone.
Telephonic meeting for the Mayors and First Selectmen - former SWR
officials called in; the public had to show up in person (we asked
and were told we had to show up).
TABLED: STAMFORD $750,000 BUS AND SHUTTLE STUDY STALLED BY COG
The second meeting of the Western Connecticut Council of Governments, Thursday Feb. 19, 2015 at 12:30pm, was by telephone. Staff asked for approval to move ahead on study of bus and shuttle study, continuing work that had already been begun.
Mayors and First Selectmen effectively demanded a presentation
from a representative from Stamford before they would take this matter
Rather embarrassing for the COG, I would think, considering that
the former HVCEO towns met in Danbury City Hall and couldn't get onto
the conference call arrangement - so they had to call in via
Bethel First Selectman's cell phone. New Canaan, Norwalk and
Stamford absent for the second time in a row. An
unidentified individual from the Danbury City Hall location noted during
"Public Comment" after About Town had spoken up, professionally,
supporting the Stamford study, that this form of "meeting" was not what
she had thought COG meetings should be like - of course, it is possible I
didn't hear that clearly!!!
CTDOT representative was on the telephone call, and no doubt has reported this discussion and vote (below).
VOTE: 14 "yes" to "Table" to 1 "no" (Wilton - who did not think there
was good reason to delay the matter, and staff could fill them in
next month). Until the Mayor of Stamford or his staff explain to the
WCCOG why they need @$750,000 study paid for by the State of CT and the
feds...a follow-on from a previous study...no action.
Another telephonic meeting in the offing? If there is to be one, what are the public notice rules on that???
January 22, 2015: New and better Exec. Director hired
after grilling. Seems to understand CT planning process, is
internet savvy and has stamina, something previous choice did not have.
WCCOG MOVING FORWARD! A WONDERFUL
IDEA IN THE END! First Selectman of Bethel Chair. of WCCOG.
Now that's a farm (acres and acres and buildings in good repair).
The WCCOG lunchtime in Sherman, CT - agenda here.
A new Executive Director was hired (above left) - and we actually saw
this town farm in the flesh!!! Looks better in person even!
Ridgefield Health Department up for a six figure grant to fight Lyme
Disease - gets COG's support. Others came forward on other
matters, too. Agenda included many
of the things, house-keeping variety, that had been done at the previous
meeting in December because of Exec. Director re-start.
We note that 4 requests for attention came from towns and
entities dealing with COG towns and interests. These had taken
place not at SWRPA but at the MPO in the past - HVCEO had taken care of
this kind of thing all along.
LEADERSHIP AND SHARP QUESTIONING VERY IMPRESSIVE BY ALL; PLANNING AND ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF SHARP
It is good to have leadership skills. The sense of authority that
Mayors and First Selectmen have is a clear difference to the way
regional planning has gone on in SWRPA - the staff seems to work for the
Board - which they did in the RPA format, but appointed members
representing someone else were more deferential to the
professionals. SWRPA called the shots and supported the
professional staff. At least on paper! We are not being
critical, only seeking to encourage respect always for professional planners.
NEXT MEETING OF WCCOG: Greenwich, February 19, 2015.
November 2014; new Executive Director resigns in December: Follow WCCOG progress here: http://www.westernctcog.org/
WCCOG Thursday, November 20, 2014, Wilton Town Hall pix...
Legislative breakfast questions OK'd. Secretary of WCCOG is Sue Chapman from New Fairfield (second from the left). Staff from Stamford, Norwalk and Danbury as well as Sherman (?).
At the second meeting of
the Western Connecticut Council of Governments (“WCCOG”) (not yet
fully functioning...SWRPA still exists until Dec. 31st!), held in the
Wilton Town Hall, Weston's First Selectwoman Gayle Weinstein was elected
Treasurer of WCCOG. Bethel First Selectman Matt Knickerbocker to be Chairman, Jamie
Stevenson of Darien Vice-Chair. See above for Secretary!
BREAKFAST is being scheduled we think in December in lieu of aWCCOG
meeting, but we didn't quite pick up when or where. Two
legislators were present – Gail Lavielle of Wilton/Norwalk/Westport and
Jonathan Steinberg of
Forming "Regional Planning Committee" to study if having one is a good idea to do referrals opposed by New Milford's First Selectwoman
Pat Murphy. However it was pointed out that the Committee had to
be appointed because doing so was in the new bylaws - whether a full
Planning Commission will be formed ultimately is unlikely, as the 10
members of HVCEO towns, who have not done referrals, outnumber the 8
town in soon to be extinct SWRPA, which has done referrals and kept
records of them for many years (good for historical knowledge...too bad
that won't continue).
NO ALTERNATES FOR THESE!
Weston, Greenwich and Newtown, above.
Weinstein reported on a suggested short group of primary concerns chosen by
representative on a small subcommittee including officials from former SWRPA
and HVCEO towns. There was a written document but it was not available to
About Town. Included on the “menu” were topics such as alternative and affordable
housing, prevailing wage and need to protect the watershed. Others will
be added, I think, just to remind the legislators of their importance – but not
Rudi Marconi of
Ridgefield was the person who added the watershed item.
Dates and town locations for the 2015 year of meetings (until they
have a joint office in place) T.B.A. However, it is expected to hold the Jan. 22, 2015 meeting in Sherman Town Hall (Census 2000 - @3800 people in 28 sqmi). This is rural.
WCCOG first meeting in Ridgefield Town Hall, Oct. 23, 2014; it was noted that Norwalk and three other towns from HVCEO have not yet voted to join.
WCCOG FIRST MEETING HELD IN RIDGEFIELD TOWN HALL OCTOBER 23, 2014
story by About Town; we found a link to everything we might want
to know about census "quick data" - I finally figured out how to download it!
FIRST MEETING OF WCCOG (merged SWRPA-HVCEO - check the RCOG page at UCONN).
AND THEY"RE OFF!!! First Selectman of Bethel presiding
in former HVCEO location (r). Is existing staff from former
SWRPA-HVCEO perhaps in line for new job - Deputy Director of WCCOG?
A quorum was present, first motion and debate about new Executive
Director - hired! And so the meeting proceeded - more CEO's
camein a bit later; parking almost
"valet-style" at Ridgefield Town Hall! FYI - very convenient
About Town! Next meeting Nov. 20, 2014, same time, same routine (12 noon lunch, 12:30pm meeting) in Wilton Town Hall.
THE WEDDING OF SWRPA AND HVCEO
Under the watchful eye of OPM, WCCOG meets in Ridgefield Oct. 23, 2014. Center, SWRPA brings a dowry to the new entity in GIS funding...Ridgefield supplies recording.
For online casual user, the Census Bureau only provides information for more
densely populated places, showing only 12,942 population for Greenwich
"CDP" (Total population for Greenwich @61,000 in Census 2000) and not
listing anything at all online for Weston! Density is king!
AS IT HAPPENED: A case of who made the seating arrangements?
No place cards that I saw! It seemed to be that they tried the
"alternating group" method...except that there were more of one than the
Who are these First Selectmen? Mayor Mark of Danbury sizes up
Mayor David of Stamford (First Selectman Rob of New Canaan
obscured). First Selectmen Pat and Peter...
Mayor David of Stamford had a lot to say, and to the right, First
Selectman of Redding. The Mayor of Stamford began a discussion
about Ebola under
"other" items. First Selectmen of Darien, Weston, made excellent
points. Host Rudi Marconi of Ridgefield took care of lights and air
conditioning and also the luncheon earlier. At right is Norwalk's
representative, waiting for MPO meeting.
CONNECTICUT DATA CENTER LINK FOR WCCOG: http://blogs.lib.uconn.edu/outsidetheneatline/2014/10/21/regional-council-of-governments-census-data-browser/
TOWNS FROM HVCEO: 10 towns
TOWNS FROM SWRPA: 8 towns
State of Connecticut "Quick" Census Facts
U.S. Census shortlist: http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=bkmk
Near Weston’s Saugatuck Reservoir: Neighbors appeal use of shooting range
By Patricia Gay on September 26, 2014
Neighbors of a gun range on Valley Forge Road have filed an appeal with the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA).
Ian and Mari Lewis are claiming the range, which is used by local police
departments for occasional gun practice, is causing disruption to the
enjoyment of their home and violates the town’s zoning regulations.
The matter is scheduled to be heard by the ZBA on Tuesday, Oct. 28.
In their appeal, the Lewises claim that within days of moving into their
home on Valley Forge Road this past May, they heard loud, often
deafening gunfire emanating from Aquarion property across the road at
the Saugatuck Reservoir and below the Samuel P. Senior Dam.
They learned that Aquarion, which also sold them their home, allows the
Weston, Westport, and Redding police departments to use the area for
target and shooting practice a few weeks out of the year...
For full story:
Regional efficiency attempt
North Stonington, Preston officials seek areas for towns to cooperate
By Kelly Catalfamo, Day Staff Writer
Article published Sep 25, 2014
North Stonington - The North Stonington and Preston boards of selectmen
held a joint meeting last week to discuss opportunities for
regionalizing services between the towns...
The boards "determined (that) there was a great similarity between the
towns" and their governmental structure, said North Stonington First
Selectman Nicholas Mullane....left the 90-minute meeting with a plan to
form a joint committee to explore possible areas of cooperation,
including sharing an ethics commission, dog pound or fire marshal, among
other things. He said the committee would consist of four volunteers
from each town who do not currently hold town office or sit on boards or
commissions. If the two towns do collaborate and all goes well,
Mullane said, they will consider inviting Voluntown or other similar
municipalities to join them.
A shared ethics commission seems like a viable starting point, Mullane
said. Currently, Preston has a commission but North Stonington does not.
A joint commission, he said, would allow North Stonington residents to
investigate Preston complaints and vice versa, reducing the potential of
Story in full here: http://www.theday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20140925/NWS01/309259597/-1/NWS&template=printart
Regional football, regional policing, regional deer hunting, regional schools, next? Oh, they exist in statute already!
SPECIAL BOARD OF SELECTMEN WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 17, 2014 AT 7:30pm TOWN HALL MEETING ROOM:
quarterly meeting of the Lighted Fields Committee not on the agenda so we
asked and Second Selectman before the meeting began, and he reported no date yet.
- The Police Commission said no to speed humps according to
FORUM report, so this is the opportunity for Chief to address an
alternative to the Board of Selectmen; actually, the Town Engineer
had the traffic calming, signage and other roadway painting proposals,
which were approved, and the Police Dept request for more equipment
(partially) was OK'd.
- Deer hunt proposed, but where this year? Any thing new? (Photo of visitor to my property previously.)
- Regional planning merger a done deal - no
more SWRPA, now WCCOG! Gentlemen and Ladies, start your regional
engines! THE FIRST MEETING IS TO BE OCTOBER 23rd. When and where?
BACKGROUND ARTICLE HERE
Here's an interesting story about regionalism - Stratford Sewage Treatment Plant to be purchased by...New Haven.
Plans for Bridgwater’s first alcohol-serving restaurant move forward
By Susan Tuz
Updated 9:42 pm, Sunday, October 11, 2015
BRIDGEWATER — A public hearing is scheduled for this week as approval
plans move forward for the town’s first restaurant to serve alcohol.
Bridgewater Village Store representatives are requesting a special
permit to convert the store’s former bank space into a cafe that will
serve alcohol. The public hearing before the Planning & Zoning
Commission continues at 7 p.m. Thursday in the parish house at the
Bridgewater Congregational Church, 10 Clapboard Road.
Greg Bollard, vice president of Bridgewater Village Store Inc., will
present the application, which calls for renovations and expanding the
existing store and cafe with parking and a new sewage-disposal
system...story in full: http://www.newstimes.com/news/article/Plans-for-Bridgwater-s-first-alcohol-serving-6565122.php
FEDERALLY FUNDED PILOT PROJECT FOR BOOTHLESS TOLLS - REQUIRING COG EXPANSION OR JUST COOPERATION?
Connecticut Approved For Federal Highway Toll Pilot Project
March 2, 2015
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The Federal Highway Administration has approved
Connecticut for a pilot program installing an electronic toll system.
The pilot program for so-called value-pricing bypasses a federal ban on
federal highway tolls by offering an exemption that allows certain types
of electronic tolls.
Value-pricing, or congestion pricing as it's sometimes called, assigns
values for trips at different times and places for different motorists
to encourage driving at different times and places to reduce
congestion....story in full: http://www.courant.com/politics/capitol-watch/hc-connecticut-approved-for-federal-highway-toll-pilot-project-funds-20150302-story.html
Danbury mayor envisions the city of the future
By Rob Ryser
Updated 5:49 pm, Friday, January 9, 2015
DANBURY -- The city of the future might have sensors perched like birds
on every street corner to dim the lights when no one is around and send
out alerts when a parking spot opens or a garbage can is full.
It might have solar panels on every roof and wind turbines on Interstate 84.
But to meet the challenges of the next decade, to serve a growing
population with a workforce the city can't afford to increase, the real
change will have to be in the way city employees work. They will have to
make up for their limited numbers with efficiency, innovation and
resourcefulness...story in full: http://www.newstimes.com/local/article/Danbury-mayor-envisions-the-city-of-the-future-6005127.php#photo-7368849
Ordinance panel sets hearing on joining COG
By ROBERT KOCH, Hour Staff Writer
Posted: Tuesday, October 21, 2014 10:30 pm | Updated: 1:03 pm, Wed Oct 22, 2014.
NORWALK -- Members of the Common Council's Ordinance Committee on
Tuesday evening plugged their noses and voted to schedule a public
hearing on a proposal to have Norwalk join the Western Connecticut
Council of Local Governments (COG).
A COG would put transportation, housing and other inter-municipal issues under the direct leadership of chief-elected officials.
If the council were to approve the regionalization proposal, Norwalk
would join 17 other municipalities, including Housatonic Valley
communities, to address such issues.
Under a new state law, towns have until Jan. 1, 2015, to join a COG and
thus replace their representation through the South Western Regional
Planning Agency (SWRPA)...story in full here: http://www.thehour.com/news/nw-city_council/ordinance-panel-sets-hearing-on-joining-cog/article_bc7f864e-54d8-5064-a544-05add9c58744.html
Local Council of Governments receives grant for study of regional services
By Kimberly Drelich
Published October 21. 2014 3:58PM
Updated October 21. 2014 4:02PM
Norwich — The Southeastern Connecticut Council of Governments is slated
to receive $150,000 for a study and plan for regional shared services.
SCCOG was one of several recipients of state grants for regional
planning councils announced on Tuesday.
The proposed study “would examine current activities of the region’s 19
towns, develop a comprehensive plan and model for regional shared
services, staff and equipment, and identify potential cost savings that
could result from implementing the plan,” according to a state news
release...story in full here: http://www.theday.com/article/20141021/NWS01/141029951/1047
Videotape can be made available of this Symposium
Regional Planning Organizations: Better Use of a Hidden Asset
The Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations ("ACIR") sponsored
the following meeting: a half-day symposium for Municipal, Regional and
State Government stakeholders on issues related to enhancing the roles
and functions of Connecticut's Regional Planning Organizations.
Tuesday, November 16, 2004
8am - 12:45pm
Holiday Inn, North Haven
Exit 12 off I-91
NOTE: A dozen years later some names are still with us working on this issue and others have left us.