MINUTES ADOPTED AS PRESENTED 04/16/2012
ENFIELD TOWN COUNCIL
MINUTES OF A SPECIAL MEETING
MONDAY, APRIL 2, 2012
A Special Meeting of the Enfield Town Council was called to order by Chairman Kaupin in the Enfield Room of the Enfield Town Hall, 820 Enfield Street, Enfield, Connecticut on Monday, April 2, 2012. The meeting was called to order at 5:32 p.m.
ROLL-CALL – Present were Councilmen Arnone, Bosco, Edgar, Hall, Kaupin, Kienzler, Lee, Mangini, Nelson and Stokes. Councilman Crowley arrived at 6:10 p.m. Also present were Town Manager, Matthew Coppler; Assistant Town Manager, Daniel Vindigni; Town Clerk, Suzanne Olechnicki; Town Attorney, Kevin Deneen; Director of Community Development, Ray Warren and Director of Economic Development, Peter Bryanton
SPECIAL GUESTS – ENFIELD REVITALIZATION
Present from the Enfield Revitalization Strategy Committee were Darrin LaMore, Kenneth Edgar, Linda DeGray and Colleen Reidy.
Mr. Bryanton stated since 2009 they have been working off the Thompsonville Revitalization Plan. He noted today they’d like to present their updated goals and objectives. He explained there is a list of action items that were taken from several plans and documents combined over the years, and they took the best things and added more recent items. He stated it is this latest document that they use in order to move forward.
Mr. LaMore stated more action needs to be taken in order to revitalize Thompsonville Village, and key elements need to be addressed to get things going so that investors will take revitalization seriously.
He highlighted the following areas that need attention:
- What to do with this structure?
- Is demolition the best choice and how do they show the contribution made by the Higgins’ family?
- There is potential with this building if successfully rehabilitated.
- Need to work out ownership issue, tax status and available state monies.
- If train station doesn’t work out, should still create a walkable area.
- It’s critical to support the Enfield Police Department regarding public safety in Thompsonville.
Mr. LaMore stated they are working on setting measurable goals over the next few months. He feels it’s time to lay out goals and make them happen.
Councilman Mangini questioned what the Town Council can do to assist the Committee in reaching its goals, and when will the Council hear more about the specific goals.
Mr. LaMore stated it would be helpful to stick to their quarterly meeting goal to be sure they are all moving in the right direction. He noted anything the Town Council can do to move along issues concerning the Higgins Building and Strand Theater would be helpful.
Mr. Bryanton stated it would be helpful to meet more often with the Town Council. He added it would be helpful to have more education concerning why revitalization is important, why it’s important to have transit in town and why they should change zoning once in awhile. He noted it’s important to involve the public as much as possible. He stated having access to more television time would help, i.e., coming before the Town Council during televised meetings. He noted anything that would help get the word out to the public would help.
Councilman Kienzler questioned the Committee’s ideas for the Strand Theater. Mr. LaMore pointed out the Strand is a structurally solid building. He feels it’s important to do something with this property because it is the most notable property and is a physical centerpiece.
Councilman Kienzler questioned the parking accommodations for the Strand Theater, and Mr. LaMore noted there’s pocket parking scattered around that area.
Councilman Lee pointed out there are still grant monies available for the Strand Theater. He noted the Revitalization Committee acts at the Town Council’s direction. He noted he encouraged this Committee to get on the calendar this evening because they have gotten to the point where they have adopted their goals for the next two years. He noted if there’s something specific that the Town Council wants this Committee to concentrate on, they should think about that and respond back to the Committee in a few weeks. He pointed out there’s nothing being proposed by the Committee that has not been done throughout the State of Connecticut and the rest of the country.
Chairman Kaupin questioned what goals have and have not been accomplished, and is there anything that the Town Council is dragging its feet on that is holding up the Committee’s goals. He acknowledged the Committee has member vacancies. He questioned what type of new members would compliment this Committee.
Mr. Bryanton stated there were some goals they did meet, i.e., the establishment of the Community Development Corporation and the completion of the final transit concept plans. He noted a lot of things are on-going.
Mr. LaMore stated his belief they could use a civil engineer or someone with an urban planning background, and they could use someone of a younger age with fresher ideas. He noted such people should have a vested interest. He stated his belief people get more involved when things are getting done.
Chairman Kaupin questioned whether any of the Town’s goals are counterproductive to what the Committee is trying to do.
Mr. LaMore stated it would be sad to see the Higgins building demolished, however, he understands that something needs to be done.
Chairman Kaupin noted they could look into E-TV funding to see if more Revitalization meetings can be covered on E-TV. He added the Committee could perhaps highlight a certain item on a ten-minute spot on television. Mr. Coppler added they could even do a 30-minute spot on E-TV.
Councilman Nelson agreed that if the Higgins building is demolished, there should be some recognition given to the Higgins family for their contribution.
Councilman Arnone raised the possibility of hiring a grant writer to seek out funds to help the Committee reach some goals.
MOTION #1739 by Councilman Nelson, seconded by Councilman Kienzler to go into Executive Session to discuss Personnel Matters, Pending Litigation and Real Estate Negotiations.
Upon a SHOW-OF-HANDS vote being taken, the Chair declared MOTION #1739 adopted 10-0-0. The meeting stood recessed at 6:03 p.m.
The Executive Session of the Enfield Town Council was called to order by Chairman Kaupin at 6:04 p.m.
ROLL-CALL – Present were Councilmen Arnone, Bosco, Edgar, Hall, Kaupin, Kienzler, Lee, Mangini, Nelson and Stokes. Councilman Crowley arrived at 6:10 p.m. Also present were Town Manager, Matthew Coppler; Assistant Town Manager, Daniel Vindigni; Town Clerk, Suzanne Olechnicki; Town Attorney, Kevin Deneen; Director of Development Services, Raymond Warren
Personnel Matters, Pending Litigation and Real Estate Negotiations were discussed with no action or votes being taken.
Chairman Kaupin adjourned the Executive Session at 7:07 p.m. He reconvened the Special Meeting at 7:08 p.m. and stated during Executive Session, Personnel Matters, Pending Litigation and Real Estate Negotiations were discussed with no action or votes being taken.
MOTION #1740 by Councilman Stokes, seconded by Councilman Crowley to adjourn.
Upon a SHOW-OF-HANDS vote being taken, the Chair declared MOTION #1740 adopted 11-0-0, and the meeting stood adjourned at 7:09 p.m.