NEDC taking prudent approach to agreement with Beacon Falls 

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By Andreas Yilma, Staff Writer

NAUGATUCK — The borough’s economic development arm wants to review its regulations before committing to providing services to Beacon Falls.

A tentative agreement has been reached between the Naugatuck Economic Development Corporation and Beacon Falls for the quasi-public agency to help lead the town’s economic development effort. The Beacon Falls Board of Selectmen unanimously approved the agreement in February.

The NEDC board of directors last week formed a subcommittee to review and possibly propose changes to the agency’s bylaws before voting on the agreement.

“We’re still excited to work with Beacon Falls. This has nothing to do with our relationship with Beacon Falls,” said Rebecca Zandvliet, chairman of the NEDC board of directors.

Zandvliet said the board wants to make sure the agreement doesn’t expose Naugatuck and NEDC President Ronald Pugliese to any legal or liability issues.

“It’s just using prudence to make sure we move forward in the proper manner,” she said.

The subcommittee planned to meet this week, after press time. The NEDC board’s next regular meeting is scheduled for March 22, though a special meeting could be held sooner to vote on the agreement.

The agreement approved by Beacon Falls selectmen last month was for March 1 through June 30. Under the agreement, Beacon Falls would pay the NEDC $11,666 for economic development services.

Pugliese said the starting date and payment will likely be amended, since the NEDC board wouldn’t approve it until after March 1.

Under the agreement, the NEDC would provide a range of services to Beacon Falls, including being a point of contact for businesses and commercial property owners, identifying land in town for development, working to retain businesses and help them expand, and attracting new businesses to town.

Beacon Falls or the NEDC could terminate the agreement with 30 days written notice. The agreement could also be extended beyond June 30.

Beacon Falls previously hired Connecticut Economic Resource Center, a nonprofit corporation and public-private partnership, for economic development services.