East Lyme Voters Narrowly Approve Additional Public Safety Building Funds

East Lyme voters narrowly approved a plan to bond an additional $985,000 to fund renovations of the former Honeywell office building to use as the police station and emergency services center.  Voters approved the bonding by a vote of 1,184 to 1,112 in a referendum held Thursday. Voters also approved using $1.2 million in delayed FEMA reimbursements from hurricanes Irene and Sandy to fill the funding gap for the public safety building by a vote of 1,254 to 1,058.  East Lyme voters previously approved $5 million in bonding for the project in February 2019.

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East Lyme Board of Selectmen Approve $985,000 in Bonding for Public Safety Building

EAST LYME — The Board of Selectmen voted unanimously to approve an additional $985,000 in bonding to fund renovations of the public safety building in their regular meeting Wednesday night. The additional funding would bring the total amount of money borrowed for the project to $5.98 million, with the remainder of the $7.2 million cost paid for by FEMA disaster relief funds for Tropical Storm Irene and Hurricane Sandy received in August. The Board of Finance will decide whether to approve the additional bonding in a special meeting on Thursday night. If approved, the spending would then go to a

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East Lyme Board of Finance Approves $1.2 Million Compromise for Public Safety Complex

EAST LYME — Citing other priorities the money could be used for, the East Lyme Board of Finance did not approve using the full $1.5 million in FEMA reimbursement from Hurricanes Irene and Sandy to help renovate the former Honeywell Office building into a police and public safety complex. Instead, the board approved appropriating $1.2 million of FEMA funds for the public safety building by a 5-1 vote Wednesday night. The vote came as a compromise as board members pared down the referral from the Board of Selectmen to use about $1.5 million in disaster recovery funds to fill part

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Nickerson Calls 3-3 Vote, Lack of Public Say on Funding for Public Safety Building, a ‘Travesty’

EAST LYME — First Selectman Mark Nickerson strongly criticized the Board of Finance for denying a request Monday night to bond additional funds to renovate the Honeywell building for use as a public safety facility — a decision that removes the question from going to a public referendum.  “It is a travesty that the citizens of East Lyme have been denied an opportunity to vote on a referendum of this plan,” Nickerson said in a press release on Wednesday. “Our town stepped up 16 months ago and overwhelmingly voted to buy the Honeywell building and finally move toward a permanent

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Code Variance Brings $268,000 in Savings for East Lyme Public Safety Building Project

EAST LYME — The State Building Inspector granted a code variance for the planned public safety complex, allowing the town to forego about $268,000 of structural reinforcements usually required for police buildings, officials said at a Tuesday night meeting. “It was nice to receive that,” said Selectman Paul Dagle at the Tuesday night meeting of the Public Safety Building Vision Committee, which he chairs. East Lyme voters approved spending $5 million to purchase and renovate the former Honeywell office building at 277 West Main Street as a public safety complex that would host the town’s police, fire marshall, and other

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East Lyme Officials Approve Outlines for One-Floor Public Safety Building

EAST LYME — Town officials on Tuesday night approved a schematic design for renovation of the former Honeywell Office building into a police and public safety complex. The architects will next prepare a detailed design to take out for bids in the next few months. The schematic designs from Silver / Petrucelli + Associates divided costs into four sections — a basic plan and three supplemental additions that might not be included in the final plan. The base schematic design is estimated to cost about $1.7 million, funds already approved for the renovation. Selectman Paul Dagle, who chairs the committee

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Letter: Holding the Elected Accountable in East Lyme

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I would like to publicly thank both Mary Biekert of The Day and Chris McDermott of the CT Examiner for their accurate reporting on East Lyme. I also have great appreciation for Lisa Picarazzi for her courage to share her personal experience as Vice Chairperson of the BoF and a Finance member on the PSB Vision Committee in the CT Examiner.  Accurate information allows the rest of us to determine and comment on implications and consequences based in both past events and emerging facts. By definition, “politics” is what determines the quality of our day-to-day lives. As citizens, many of

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Letter: Missing Building Inspection Raises Questions in East Lyme

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Time for me to step out.  I had hoped The Day would do the right thing in East Lyme’s First Selectman race and give the nod to Camille Alberti.  But their endorsement, albeit very weak, went to Mark Nickerson, “despite his missteps.”  Incumbents really do have the advantage, regardless of performance, don’t they? My name is Lisa Picarazzi and I am the vice chair of the Board of Finance (BOF) and a member of the Public Safety Building Vision Committee (PSB).  I was appointed to this committee to ensure YOUR tax dollars are not mismanaged.  Sorry to tell you all,

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East Lyme Officials Project Savings with One-story Plan

EAST LYME — Town officials and hired architects tasked with laying out a vision for renovating the former Honeywell office building into a new town police station met Tuesday night to discuss revised design concepts for the building that would confine significant work to just one floor of the two-story structure. The Public Safety Building Vision Committee is now looking for further cost savings or cuts before approving the architects to begin work on a detailed design plan. The committee is trying to limit costs to within, or nearly within, the $1.7 million remaining for construction from a February referendum.

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Nickerson Supports Giving Up Vote on East Lyme Police Commission

EAST LYME — The Board of Selectmen will hold a public hearing on November 6 on an ordinance to remove the first selectman as a voting member of the town’s Police Commission.  The First Selectman would remain as an ex officio member of the commission — effectively an advisory role — but would not have a vote . The specific language of the ordinance forbids any member of the seven-member police commission from holding any other elected or appointed office within the town. Current First Selectman Mark Nickerson spoke in support of the proposed ordinance at Wednesday night’s selectmen meeting.

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Letter: Late Questions about Public Safety Building in East Lyme

Thank you for your detailed reporting on the status of the East Lyme Public Safety Building. To build on this, I would like to offer my observations, experience and perspective on the process since the beginning of the year. There were four key issues that I offered in early February on the Facebook East Lyme Community Forum. It is self-evident that the Dominion building was not maintained and intentionally allowed to deteriorate until it became “deplorable” in what amounts to a manufactured crisis. East Lyme did not get an independent appraisal by a certified commercial real estate appraiser to validate

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East Lyme Candidates and Officials Debate Cuts and Additional Funding for Police Station

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EAST LYME — Town officials overseeing renovations of a new police building say that they expect to present a plan within the $2.2 million budget approved by voters last winter, while leaving the door open for an additional funding request. First Selectman Mark Nickerson told the Public Safety Building Vision Committee Monday night that the committee’s recommendation for converting the former Honeywell building needed two things: “We need a $2.2 million plan,” Nickerson said, “and then we need a plan to add the sally port and holdings cells and all the things that go with it structurally and for ADA

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Code and ADA Compliance Weigh on Police Station Budget in East Lyme

EAST LYME — Town officials will weigh which features can be included in plans for a new police station given the significant cost of required code compliance and accommodations for accessibility, as they review architectural plans to convert the former Honeywell office building into a new public safety facility. Those plans were part of a presentation Thursday night by architects hired by East Lyme. At a referendum in February, East Lyme voters approved spending $5 million for a plan to purchase the Honeywell office building at 277 West Main Street and to renovate it as a consolidated center for the

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