Beacon Falls officials eye bonding to improve roads, treatment plant

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By Andreas Yilma, Staff Writer

BEACON FALLS — Town officials are looking to bond $6 million to pay for road repairs and improvements to the wastewater treatment plant.

The Board of Selectmen and Board of Finance approved separate resolutions this month to borrow $5 million to pay for road work, including storm water drainage and sewer improvements, and another $1 million to make improvements at treatment plant.

First Selectman Gerard Smith said bonding is the best way to pay for the work.

“Bonding is the mechanism to do all capital projects,” Smith said.

Officials have been exploring how to approach a large-scale project to repair roads in town for over a year. The town hired StreetScan, Inc. of Burlington, Mass., last March to study the condition of 100 roads in town to determine what work needs to be done to which roads.

Smith said some of the money for road work, if officials get the voters’ approval to borrow the funds, would go to pay for repairs to Beacon Valley Road.

The town already has $500,000 in state funds set aside to fix the road from Beacon Valley Bridge to the Naugatuck town line.

Smith said what other roads would be fixed with the $5 million is still to be determined.

The wastewater treatment plant, which is over 40 years old, is outdated, officials have said. The planned work at the plant would include electrical upgrades, replacing a generator and other work officials think is needed.

The Planning and Zoning Commission and the Water Pollution Control Authority have to approve the resolutions still.

Officials had hoped to send the resolutions to a vote at a town meeting in April. However, the COVID-19 outbreak stalled the process as town buildings are closed and meetings have been canceled. It’s unclear when the process will get back on

track.