October 11, 2010

Mayor McCoy supports Job Growth in Vernon Connecticut

 VERNON Connecticut — On 10/7/10 Mayor Jason L. McCoy spoke to the Planning and Zoning Commission regarding his administration’s proposed to promote economic growth in the area, to promote private job growth and expand Vernon’s tax base by correcting restrictions on a parcel off Interstate 84 at exit 67 and Reservoir Road. The property is a 40.5-acre parcel. The McCoy Administration has been working to lower the local unemployment rate for area residents and keep the Town off Connecticut's Distressed Municipality list. This effort is one more step to encourage investment in the Town. This year Vernon was taken off Connecticut's Distressed Municipality list.

Chairman of the Vernon's PZC Lester Finkle opened the application to Public Comment on Oct. 21, at 7 pm at Town Hall.

In 2005 the PZC adopted the regulation that reduced the size of any building that could be placed on the property to a 40,000 square foot footprint. The 2005 adopted regulation was contrary to the recommendation of the PZC's consultant Planimetrics. The 2010 proposal is the same proposal as the consultant in 2005 but it does not go back to the pre-2005 regulation.

The request by the Town Administration was done in response to the Metro Hartford Alliance bringing forward a distribution company to Vernon. The Company has placed Vernon on its top three choices in Connecticut. The Economic Development Coordinator Marina Rodriguez said there was “interested” in the parcel from a company that wanted to build an 180,000-square-foot distribution facility and create 140 jobs in Connecticut.

Mayor McCoy said "this change is brought to you by this Administration because we did not feel it was fair to anyone to lead interested parties on, to waste money, waste time and cause citizens to do the same if no correction acceptable."

In 2005 the Town Administration supported the restrictions, the Town now recognizes that the 2005 change created a significant fiscal impact to the area, impacted area job growth moreover due to the Town's limited land area there is an impact on the tax based.

At the PZC’s meeting on Aug. 19, Mayor McCoy asked the commission to correct the amendment and slightly ease the restrictions for the good of the town’s tax base, for job growth; to keep the town off the Connecticut distressed municipality list, as well as for the local economy. McCoy explained that there had been interest in the parcel from a company, and taxes are the only way to pay for essential services like a police, fire service, education, roads and sanitarians. We need to be careful not to over burden the local taxpayers, this is an opportunity to help.

Len Tundermann the Vernon Town Planner addressed concerns about water run off, explaining that the Commission can utilizing “low-impact development” in the Town zoning regulations to minimize the flow of water runoff from buildings and pavement through permeable pavement, and grass drainage swales. The Town has LID regulations, that have been used already, and no other regulations are needed.

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