Selectman's Newsletter

First Selectman Clay Cope’s Column for April 10, 2017

Your Board of Selectmen voted unanimously to approve the proposed Town budget for Fiscal Year 2017/2018 at a special meeting on April 4th, moving the budget to a referendum on May 6th. There will be a Town Meeting on Friday April 28th where residents can comment and ask questions.

The Town budget has an increase of 2.4%, and when combined with the Board of Education’s budget of 0% increase, there will be a 0.9% increase in spending overall. However, the mill rate will stay flat at 20.33, due to growth in the Grand List, and lower debt costs due to re-negotiated long-term bonds. Your real estate and property taxes will not go up.

The largest increase to the Town budget was in the Resident State Trooper’s line, due to the Governor Malloy’s budget proposal putting the entire cost of police protection services onto the Towns. That cost-shift alone added $45,140 or an increase of 25.6% to that line in the budget. Unfortunately, Governor Malloy is making his problem our problem. Nonetheless, the safety of our community is paramount, and your Board of Selectmen views taking on this additional expense as necessary.

The Board of Selectmen agreed to fund the Sherman Volunteer Fire Department’s entire request for additional funds for equipment, supplies, education, and radios. Modest increases were made to the Senior Center clerk’s hours, as well as for the Social Services department clerk. And an increase of 5% or $7,500 was made to the Sherman Library. The Candlewood Lake Authority was funded at their full request of $77,800, or an increase of 1.3%.

All of the proposed requests and agreed upon cuts were carefully considered by your Selectmen, and we have put forth the best possible budget to provide essential and important services, while maintaining low taxes.

The Education Cost Share Agreement (ECS) from the State is completely diminished. The Board of Education took this into consideration when creating its budget, while continuing to fund the education students need, and that parents expect. We truly appreciate the work that the new Administration and current all-volunteer Board of Education put into this budget!

Join us for the annual Budget Meeting on Friday, April 28th at 7 PM in the Emergency Services Facility (ESF), and mark your calendar for the Budget vote on Saturday, May 6th from 6 AM to 8 PM, also in the ESF.

Please be advised that the CT DOT has begun construction on Route 37 Center at the intersection of Route 39 North, ending just past White Silo Farm & Winery. Crews will replace all catch basins along the route, and milling of the road will start after the July 4th holiday, with repaving scheduled for mid-July. Kindly slow down when approaching the road crews, and be mindful of lane closures. We look forward to having this road repaired and repaved!

Clay Cope

You can always reach out to me via e-mail at or my office number is 860-355-1139.

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