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Selectmen Withdraw Fiber Optic Network from Budget

Due to easement issues with the Yankee Gas pipeline resulting in the project's delay, the fiber optic network, which would "piggyback" on the pipeline installation has been removed from the budget.

The following is a press release sent from the Board of Selectmen's Office

At a special Board of Selectmen’s Meeting on April 30, 2012, the board voted unanimously to withdraw the t referendum item from the Annual Meeting agenda, scheduled for May 1, 2012.

At this meeting, First Selectman Brennan advised that a recent meeting was held with Town Counsel to reassess the probable time line to resolve the legal activity associated with required easements for the Yankee Gas pipeline installation.  Legal Counsel’s best estimate was an additional 4-6 months would be necessary.

Consequently, adequate time exists to revisit the Fiber Optic Network project.  A full review of the project can be made, various citizens suggestions considered, the project’s consultant, BVH, can be involved and input will be welcomed from knowledgeable citizens.

Mr. Brennan stated:  “The temporary withdrawal of the project at this time makes the most sense, as time exists to conduct a full review of the project and to clarify objectives, alternatives and projected costs, which hopefully will build strong community consensus for the project.”

After discussion, the board voted unanimously to reaffirm the Board of Selectmen’s commitment to the Fiber Optic Network project, but to temporarily withdraw the project from the May 1, 2012 annual Town Meeting agenda.  The board stated that the project is vital to fully integrate a town-wide communications system and to improve public safety in emergency situations.

After the project is fully reviewed, the Board of Selectmen will meet with the task force before voting to take the project to a Special Town Meeting for a referendum vote.  At that point, the project would also be referred to the Board of Finance for comment in accordance with administrative procedures in the Town Charter.

Finally a start to some common sense May 01, 2012 at 06:56 PM
Vote No on the budget, and road paving - why? The BOS removed 650,000 for road paving from the annual budget and then rather than reducing the budget they spent that 650,000 on other items. And to make up for the road paving removal they are asking us to bond it. Another person tried to explain what they did but I am not sure if it is clearly spelled out so let me offer an analogy to clarify the issue. Mom and Dad have an annual household budget. The monthly electric bill is part of the annual budget. Mom and Dad want to go to Paris, but the kids do not want Mom and Dad to spend more than the annual budget because they are worried about the family's financial future. Mom and Dad did not get any raises from their jobs this year, so how can they pay for Paris without spending more than the annual budget and thus getting the kids mad at them? The answer is simple! Mom and Dad remove the monthly electric bill from the annual budget. They declare that it is no longer part of their annual budget. The money they save can be used to pay for Paris, and they will not spend more than their annual budget. They say to the kids, aren't you proud of us! We did not exceed our annual budget! Oh by the way, this year we will have to take out a loan from the bank for necessary electrical services. The kids being none the wiser say, great job Mom and Dad for staying within the budget! And it's okay to take out the loan because electrical services are something that we need.
Concerned Wilton resident May 01, 2012 at 10:03 PM
Since the easement issues have been on the table for a very long time, it’s too bad that the BOS chose to use the guise of Yankee Gas to withdraw the network project, rather than to admit to the many problems with the project’s design and costs. This should serve as a wake up call to taxpayers as to how casually our money is managed and spent.
No to taxes May 02, 2012 at 12:15 AM
I suspect that they knew that they would lose this vote and in order to avoid too many people turning out to vote no on this project, they withdrew it. They are hoping that by removing this controversial issue, it might make less people inclined to come out and vote and thus increase the chances of the bloated budgets passing.
Paul Lourd July 20, 2012 at 01:29 AM
Its back....money approved this week to bury empty fiber conduit on Wolfpit Rd during the sewer project. They will find a way to give you your daily dose of fiber, one way or another.
Amo Probus July 20, 2012 at 11:19 AM
Another waste of money. $250,000.00 for an empty pipe dream. The Board of Finance (save one) caved in knowing it Is a waste but had neither the political will ...nor character...nor integrity to say no. they will have to add this to next years tax increase It's disgusting and shameless.
Cliff Cuming February 15, 2013 at 07:40 PM
Hey Amo---looks like they finally saw thru the pipe dream and decided to not support the fiber. A year later!

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