Wilton bonded capital budget features roads, roof repairs
While there is still some uncertainty as to what impact the state’s various regionalization and funding bills will have on Wilton’s budget, the Board of Selectmen has proposed a $4.98 million budget for bonded capital projects for the 2020 fiscal year.
The $4,978,150 bonded capital budget would be in addition to the $1,009,897 operating capital budget the selectmen have previously proposed.
The difference between the bonded and operating capital budgets is how they are paid. iThe operating capital budget is paid directly by town tax dollar support. The bonded capital budget is paid for with the issuance of municipal bonds, which must be paid back over time.
Leading the bonded capital budget request on the town side is $3,198,150 for the Public Works Department for road repair.
The other bonded capital request for the town is $350,000 for replacement/repairs of the roofs at Wilton Town Hall.
Chris Burney, director of facilities and energy management, told the selectmen at their regular meeting Monday, March 18 that the roofs are very leaky in spots and have been patched for years — sometimes with incompatible materials and unsatisfactory workmanship. “We need to keep roof repair up over time or we will end up with some serious damage to the roof structure,” he said.
On the education side, the bonded capital budget includes $600,000 for FY 2020 for district roof replacements. There is a schedule that projects $500,000 a year more for additional roof replacements for FY2021 through FY-2024.
Another proposed education capital bonding project is $400,000 to repave the parking lot at Cider Mill School. “It is in really bad condition,” Burney said. He explained that areas are run down and the curbing is in bad shape. “Last year we repaved part of the bus loop and we need to finish it this year,” he said.
The final proposed education capital bonding project for FY2020 is $430,000 to replace carpet with VCT (vinyl composition tile) at Cider Mill School, Middlebrook School, and Wilton High School.
First Selectwoman Lynne Vanderslice noted that if the carpet was being replaced with new carpet, the expense could have been included in the operating capital budget. But because the material is being switched — from carpet to tile — it becomes a bondable item.
Selectwoman Deborah McFadden said VCT was better than carpeting for air quality and other health issues.
The bonded capital budget schedule did not include any required bridge repairs because discussions have not been completed with the state about potential federal or state funding for those projects. Bridge expenses could run between $1 million and $1.6 million, Vanderslice said.