Letter: First Selectman talks Beacon Falls

To the editor,

It has been a busy, but productive, month, here in Beacon Falls. Let me begin by first saying a big thanks to everyone who helped make our annual Riverfest celebration last Saturday such a tremendous success. In past years, we’ve had concerns with the river being too low for the canoes and kayaks. This year, we had the exact opposite concern, as runoff from our winter storms and recent spring rains raised the speed of the current to nearly three times the safe level, forcing a decision to cancel that portion of the festivities.

While that may have impacted the size of the crowd, it did nothing to lessen the enthusiasm of those people who did attend. My thanks to our Lions Club and their incoming president Bill Mis, our Lionesses led by their President Mary Unfricht and committee Chair Sue Mis and Bob Bradley of Beacon Falls Pharmacy for all their efforts in putting the event together; to our Rotary Club and their President Joe Dowdell and Marla Scirpo for coordinating the memorial butterfly release program; our Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro for taking time from her busy schedule to share part of the day with us; Kyle Brennan for serving as the voice of the event; The Rubber City Blues Band for providing the day’s musical entertainment; and all the local vendors who provided a wide assortment of food and fashion items for sale.

Also, our thanks to the men and women of Beacon Hose Company No. 1 led by new Chief Jim Trzaski and our own Beacon Falls Senior Center and President Bernadette Dionne, whose parking lots and facilities provide the base of operations for the event. Be sure to mark your calendars for the first Saturday in May for the foreseeable future, weather permitting of course.

Moving away from fun now, this month will be a busy one for town business, starting this week on Thursday, May 8. We will be holding a town meeting to vote on the FY2014-15 municipal budget at Laurel Ledge Elementary School, the documents for which are available either online at the town’s website or in hard copy at the town hall.  This budget calls for a modest 0.5 percent increase from the previous fiscal year, and has received the unanimous support of both the boards of Selectmen and Finance.  After a small, but spirited, public hearing on this budget, I encourage everyone to support its adoption. In addition, by the time you read this article, we should all know the result of the Region 16 budget referendum being held Tuesday, May 6.

We have several issues on the agenda for this month’s Board of Selectmen meeting on Monday, May 12 about which I’d like to give everyone interested some advanced notice.  First, I receive many calls about the state-run project that is refurbishing the retaining walls on Route 42/South Main Street. I have contacted the Department of Transportation and one of the project managers will conduct a short presentation about the status of the project. Also, there will be a presentation by the 2COM (2 Communities, One Mission) Task Force regarding the status of our two Region 16 communities in the areas of healthy behavior, substance abuse prevention, safe driving, etc. I encourage any interested citizens to attend, and if you’re available, to participate in this fine program.

Finally, remember that Mother’s Day is almost here, so don’t forget to try and make it a special day for those in your family who deserve a little bit of extra attention this coming Sunday.

Christopher Bielik

First Selectman

Beacon Falls

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