Economic development position a work in progress


BEACON FALLS — The Economic Development Commission is working to fill a position designed to spur economic development in town.

Officials created an economic development coordinator position while developing the 2017-18 municipal budget and included $35,000 in the budget to fund the position.

“We are in the process of developing a job description and some goals for the position,” Economic Development Commission Vice Chairman Jeremy Rodorigo said.

Rodorigo said the commission is comprised of volunteers who all have full-time jobs.

“We are looking for someone to concentrate on marketing Beacon Falls and getting the remaining lots in the industrial parks filled,” Rodorigo said. “Like every other economic development commission, we are trying to increase the tax base and grand list of our town to hopefully take the tax burden off the residential homeowners.”

Once the job description is created, Rodorigo said, the town will be ready to accept applications from individuals and proposals from companies.

Although there is no state budget in place yet and municipalities are unsure what state funding they will receive, the money for the position is not in jeopardy, officials said.

First Selectman Christopher Bielik said the money is in the budget. However, he added, the lack of a state budget may delay the hiring process.

“We would like to get some assurance and to know what’s coming down from Hartford,” Bielik said.

Rodorigo said he would like to see the position filled by October.

“Other towns around us have had great success in hiring a person who is dedicated to marketing the town,” Rodorigo said.

Bielik said he wasn’t sure when the position would be filled, but he wanted to make sure all the questions are answered before the town moves forward with the hiring process.

“We want to make sure whatever direction we end up going with this, it is clearly defined and set up with expectations that result in the best result for the town,” Bielik said.