Former firehouse sale moving forward

FALLS VILLAGE — First Selectman Dave Barger told the Board of Selectmen and the Board of Finance that the sale of the former firehouse at 35 Railroad St. is moving forward, albeit slowly.

From the town’s side, attorney Emily Vail of Ackerly Brown is waiting for surveyor Mat Kiefer to perform a survey regarding an easement. “We’re in the queue,” Barger said.

The attorney also needs a septic map from the Torrington Area Health District. Board of Finance member Carol Staats said such maps are public information and it shouldn’t take more than a day or two to obtain them.

Barger said he’s been in touch with buyer James Gillispie and the latter is proceeding with finalizing his plans for the property.

The town-owned property’s sale to Gillispie for $300,000 was approved by a referendum vote on Nov. 7, 2023.

Board of Education chair Pat Mechare told both boards that due to a change in state law, the school board will begin the practice of retaining up to 2% of its budget each year from unspent funds. The money will go into an account controlled by the school board and will not be subject to the Board of Finance’s authority.

Mechare said as the town school board traditionally creates tight budgets, she doubts that the full 2% will be available most years. For the 2023-24 budget, 2% is about $44,000.

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