Kent to invest in tree trimming project

KENT — The Kent Board of Selectmen held a special meeting, led by First Selectman Marty Lindenmeyer and Selectmen Glen Sanchez and Lynn Worthington, on Tuesday, May 7, in preparation for Kent’s annual budget meeting on Friday, May 17.

The board is seeking to create a project called “Hazardous Tree Removal or Trimming” to address clearing hazardous branches, limbs, or fallen trees on municipal property or within the right-of-way.

Funding for this tree removal project is proposed at $20,792.13 for the fiscal year of 2024 and will be reimbursed by The Local Capital Improvement Program (LoCIP), which aids towns in improvement projects involving roads. Removing tree limbs for road accessibility would fall under LoCIP’s guidelines. The selectmen carried the motion.

Another motion carried at the meeting was to increase funds for improvements to Kent Town Hall, including the air conditioning, the generator, the parking lot, and the boiler. LoCIP’s grant would also reimburse this project, which is set for $41,425.

Funds for both the tree removal project and improvements for the town hall project, if passed, would be disbursed by Sunday, June 30, and an annual expense report from the town will be due by Sunday, Sept. 1.

The agenda for the town meeting was set and it was decided that the meeting would start at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 17, but doors would be open for voters early at 6 p.m. to allow time to verify voting eligibility.

Much of the discussion at the special meeting was reserved for addressing the grant-funded Housatonic Resource Recovery Authority program at the transfer station called “Save As You Throw.”

The project began in 2023 and the board is now looking at spending costs to residents in the 2025 and 2026 fiscal years regarding the system of special bags used at the transfer station.

A motion was passed for residents to use colored bags, which they will receive in a bundle with the option to purchase more, with locations pending.

Discussion turned to getting an official Kent logo printed on the bags, which was not expected to add any additional cost to residents, but exact numbers were not available at the time of the meeting regarding the logo bags. Further details will be clarified by the selectmen’s office.

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