The Suffield Board of Finance recommended the Board of Selectmen call a special town meeting to authorize the appropriation and borrowing for the four bonding projects previously presented to them at the finance board's meeting on Monday night.
The four projects, Town Hall renovations, road and drainage repair, new fire trucks and a new library, will now be voted on in a town meeting tentatively scheduled for the middle of March. The earliest a referendum could be held is April 19.
“Right now, the intent is to call the town meeting on the 17th of March,” said First Selectman Tom Frenaye after the projects were approved.
The Town Hall renovations and road and drainage projects passed unanimously, 6-0. Board members Ryan Anderson and Brian Kost voted against the fire trucks project, which passed 4-2. Kost was also the sole dissenter on the library vote, which was approved 5-1.
The projects were voted on in quick succession, as most questions about the projects had been addressed in previous meetings.
The projects will cost $13.2 million to the town. Town Hall improvements will cost $1.9 million; road and drainage improvements will cost $3.1 million, new fire trucks and other equipment will cost $1.4 million; and the new library will cost $8.4 million, with $1.5 million of the library money to come from outside fundraising.
Kost raised an issue with the official language regarding the $1.5 million that will be contributed to the library project from outside sources. He pointed out that the bonding document said the town is appropriating $8.4 million for the project, although they are only authorizing $6.9 million in spending. Other board members agreed the language was acceptable if not immediately evident.
“As it’s written, I think it’s binding,” said board alternate James Lennon.