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From the First Selectman 10/30/15

What a beautiful autumn it has been. I have seen many of you enjoying our trails and the magnificent fall foliage, another reminder of our shared good fortune to live in this extraordinary town.

We are moving ahead to determine the long-term plan for the Country Club of Woodbridge property. Importantly, I continue to present the relevant facts in order to clear up any confusion and to assure that we – the Board of Selectmen, the Board of Finance, and the voters of Woodbridge – have a sound basis for the important decisions that lie ahead.

Last month the Board of Selectmen and Board of Finance met together to review why the Town purchased the property, expectations at the time, costs thus far, anticipated additional costs and how the CCW expenses impact other Town projects and goals. You can review the information presented at www.woodbridgect.org/CCWFuture.

This month the Board of Selectmen and the Board of Finance went on tours of the clubhouse to see first-hand what the building looks like from the interior. By the time you are reading this column (but after I submit it), the two boards will have also met to review different proposed scenarios and the financial impacts of each. This information too is available on the Town’s website noted above.

I hope you will take the time to familiarize yourself with the facts as we move ahead on the CCW. Town property can never be sold without a vote by the residents: the final decision rests with you. Knowing the facts will be crucial in making an informed decision.

I also continue my focus on community-building activities. Since becoming First Selectman one of my goals has been to promote community events and create new events in order to bring our residents together to celebrate the richness of life we enjoy in Woodbridge. Last month I launched a new initiative: The Wisdom of Woodbridge (WOW!). It is a series of lectures where Town residents share their wisdom with us. We are starting with five lectures over the next several months, although we could no doubt schedule daily lectures for many years without running out of fascinating talks by our neighbors.

At the first Wisdom of Woodbridge lecture, Dr. Mary Papazian, President of Southern Connecticut State University (SCSU), spoke about the impressive developments at SCSU – in curriculum, faculty, programs, buildings and more – and the future of higher education in the global economy. The next Wisdom of Woodbridge lecture is by Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Rob Klee who will discuss “Talking Trash: Recycling Revisited” on November 17 at 7 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center (JCC).

October has been a busy month at Town Hall. In addition to our Country Club focus, Wisdom of            Woodbridge series and our regular activities, we held a workshop for our board and commission members to learn more about the CT Freedom of Information Act and a separate workshop for several of our board and commission members to understand how their work contributes to economic development in our Town.

And there is more coming. The Woodbridge Volunteer Fire Association is holding its fourth annual Truck or Treat event on Saturday, October 31 from 5- 8 p.m. This year the event will include fireworks at 7:30 p.m. Due to the popularity of this event and the need to set up the fireworks, on October 31 public access to the Fitzgerald Property will close at 2 p.m. and Route 114 between Meetinghouse Lane and Newton/Center Road will be closed from 4:30-9 p.m. Parking will be available at the Old Firehouse, on Meetinghouse Lane, at Town Hall and at Amity Regional High School. There will be free shuttle service between the High School and the firehouse thanks to Chris Sorensen.

There are events in early November that you may also want to note on your calendar. On November 3 the business community is invited to a Business After Hours at Grimaldi’s Pizza from 5:30 – 7 p.m. On November 4 at 6 p.m. there will be one last workshop at the Library about the Woodbridge Solar Challenge. On November 7 the Senior Center is hosting its Annual Senior Center Holiday Fair from 10-3. Concurrently there will be a light bulb exchange hosted by the Ad Hoc Energy Advisory Task Force. And on Sunday, November 8 at 11:30 a.m. the Conservation Commission’s monthly hike will be the Bishop Trail Loop (meet in the Darling House parking lot) led by Commission member Frank DeLeo.

I hope to see you at some of these community events!

To stay up to date on this and other issues, follow us on Facebook (Facebook.com/WoodbridgeCT), sign up for the Town’s email newsletter (tinyurl.com/WoodbridgeEnews) and visit the Town’s website, www.woodbridgect.org.

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