OLD LYME — A sizable voter turnout to a midsummer referendum gave the Town of Old Lyme the needed approval, by a significant margin, to borrow up to $9.5 million to fund the planning and installation of sewers in the Sound View neighborhood and adjacent “miscellaneous area B” off Route 156.
The referendum also gives the Board of Selectmen significant flexibility to negotiate and modify the planning and funding of the project moving forward. In a number of public statements First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder has pledged that the cost to the town will be repaid by property owners in Sound View.
It’s that arrangement that has many beach community residents preparing for a legal challenge. Sound View Commission Chair Frank Pappalardo called the arrangement “unprecedented, blatantly unfair, and questionable at best” in a lengthy prepared statement to CT Examiner after the vote.
Advancing the stalled project, which has been in the planning stages since about 2012, represents a significant victory for Reemsnyder, and Old Lyme Water Pollution Control Authority (WPCA) Chair Richard Prendergast. The approval has also been supported by leaders of the three chartered beach communities — Miami Beach, Old Lyme Shores, and Old Colony Beach — which could benefit significantly from cost-sharing with the town.
The town also stands to benefit from state dollars through the Clean Water Funds program, which will reimburse the town 25 percent of eligible project costs.
………… Much more news to come this morning …………