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Sunday, 29 November -0001 19:03

Planning Ahead: Wilton Supervisor Looks to Form Long-Term Planning Committee

By | News

WILTON – Wilton Town Supervisor Arthur Johnson is looking to create a Long-Term Planning Committee to set priorities for capital improvements for aging town assets, a committee he hopes will allow the town to proactively plan ahead for costly challenges, instead of reflexively reacting to unexpected problems.

 

“I plan on formally announcing the committee at the next town board meeting,” said Supervisor Johnson. “The committee would be tasked with setting priorities as to what may need replacement or what may need rebuilding. We would try and put some funds aside so that when these things come up, the money is there so we’re not scrambling around trying to take the money out of one year’s budget.”

Though the committee still needs to be formalized, tentatively it will be made up of the department heads from the highway department, parks and recreation department and the building and grounds department, as well as the town’s comptroller and one town board member. Ideally, Johnson hopes to put money aside for this committee during the town’s budgeting process to act as, “a kind of savings account for these kinds of capital expense items,” said Supervisor Johnson.

Already, there are several capital projects that Supervisor Johnson hopes the new committee will be able to plan for and take on.

“We have a phone system that is probably a dozen years old, and it’s hard to get replacement parts for it. So we really need to think about replacing the phone system, and that’s probably a $40,000 or $50,000 purchase,” said Supervisor Johnson. “Our town court building will probably need a new roof in the near future. The same kind of thing with the senior center – maybe new furnaces. Those types of expenses that either could come up unexpectedly or maybe only have a five-year useful life left; I’d like to be able to plan ahead and put funds aside for those types of things.”

The new committee will be focused more on maintaining and providing upkeep to existing town assets, not creating new capital or construction projects.

“I think we’re doing well financially, and I think we can afford to systematically put some funds away in a reserve,” said Supervisor Johnson. “This way, there will be a plan in place, and it should save us time during our budget process and give us an idea of what we should be prioritizing and pursuing.”

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