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First Selectman's Column

Hello friends and neighbors. Wow! Another year has come and gone. In the past year, much has been accomplished yet much remains to be done. Nystroms Park Phase II has been approved and construction will begin this Spring/Summer. This phase will include a new running track and an improved soccer field as well as some other amenities. In totality Phase I and Phase II will constitute a major improvement in our park facilities. One long overdue. Phase I (Web Roads) of a 6 phase Road Reconstruction Plan has also been approved. Reconstruction of 13 roads and all the storm sewers will begin this Spring/Summer with completion taking about 6 to 8 months. Please be patient with us if your road isn't on this list. We will need to bond additional funds in the future and don't want to do so until it is prudent. In the meantime, we will continue to chip seal and skim coat areas in desperate need with the limited funds that are available. We have also received a State Grant (LOTCIP) to reconstruct Hickory Hill Road. This grant will pay for the reconstruction of the road from Route 109 to Walnut Hill to include the storm water system as well as the road surface. The only expenses that the town is responsible for is the engineering fees. This project is now in the engineering phase with construction not likely to begin before the fall with completion coming in 2018.  We have been unable to secure State funding to provide for municipal parking area at Reeve's Field to serve patrons of the Downtown Business District, however it is our intent to utilize funding where available to make incremental improvements. Development in this area is something that has been identified as a high priority in the Plan of Conservation & Development . It is our hope that in investing in our town, private investment will follow our lead which would potentially lead to greater economic activity equating to more services and much needed employment. Several other areas around town are showing the beginnings of economic activity and we at Town Hall have reached out and stand ready to assist should it be needed. We now have a new retail/office complex on Watertown Road which looks great and has brought some new activity to the area. We also are very pleased to have a new development at the intersection of South Main and Watertown Road which has greatly enhanced our gateway into town. The Plume & Atwood site has a new owner and there is conversation with the Naugatuck Valley Railroad taking place that may result in their expansion into that area. We in government continue to seek and bring economic development tools to the table and can now offer a State program known as Enterprise Zone to the manufacturing areas in town. It is our hope that businesses will take advantage of this tool and expand operations in our community. We have continued to negotiate contracts with our labor unions that make substantial improvements in the area of post retirement benefits and health care, two major drivers of the long term health of our community. We will soon begin the budget process to plan for Thomaston's 2017-2018 fiscal year. As we have in the past, we will continue in the future to seek efficiencies at every turn to provide cost effective governmental services to our citizens. Please become involved in your community. Volunteerism is the heart and soul of America and is truly what makes Thomaston tick. Sincerely, Edmond V. Mone

ed mone