By Andreas Yilma Citizen’s News
NAUGATUCK — The borough’s efforts to upgrade and further develop downtown will be getting assistance from a lobbying firm.
The Board of Mayor and Burgesses in a special meeting Wednesday, Feb. 9 unanimously approved hiring Sullivan & LeShane, Inc., of Hartford for $40,000 to work with the borough as a lobbyist and consultant on various downtown projects.
Major projects planned for Naugatuck include the proposed International Inland Port of Naugatuck, a transit orientated development, an infrastructure project, and the Rubber Avenue project
“The lead on our project is going to be Ryan J. Bingham, the former mayor of Torrington, who works with Sullivan & LeShane and he will be working with us,” Mayor N. Warren “Pete” Hess said.
The funds will come out of the borough’s federal American Rescue Plan Act funds, according to Hess. Naugatuck received the first half of its $9.2 million ARP funds last summer and will receive the second $4.6 million this June.
In a letter to Hess, the firm states that its members are excited to work with the municipality to achieve many of the borough’s goals.
“Sullivan & LeShane will be a strategic advocate for the Borough’s positions, goals and beliefs through interaction with legislature, executive agencies and their staff to give Naugatuck the best foot forward in their ambitious pursuits,” the letter states.
The firm has represented many municipalities including New Haven, Hartford, Norwich and Vernon, according to the letter.
Some of the methods of advocacy the lobbying firm will focus on include monitoring progress of grants and potential pieces of legislation that could impact the borough, analyzing federal infrastructure program for opportunities and coordinating with Hess and borough officials to provide real time information on ongoing grant and bond requests.
Representatives of the firm could not be reached for comment last week.Firm secured in effort to develop downtown Naugatuck