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News From Town

In Library, News on January 29, 2010 at 6:36 am

NEWS FROM THE CHESTER LIBRARY (I’m getting it out a little late…sorry)

Brrrrr! Our recent weather has provided a reminder of just how nice it is to get cozy with a good book.  Here’s a great opportunity to stock up. The Friends of Chester Public Library will open the doors on hundreds of gently read books for children and adults on Friday, January 22 at 2 PM.  Treasures include both hard and soft cover books, movies and recorded books at prices from $0.25 to $1.00.  The sale continues for two weeks during regular library hours.

Did you know that proceeds from the sales are used to purchase movies (including our Netflix membership) and music for the library, to fund both adult and children’s programs, and to pay for many of the museum passes the library makes available?  Your support of the sale certainly enhances library service in Chester.

NEWS FROM REGION 4

Scott Bradley, son of Steve and Karen Bradley, received a Gold and Hartford Art School Scholarship for his amazing photography portfolio.

The Safe Grad Committee needs volunteers to help out on various projects:

• Direct mailing to graduates’ families;

• Solicit donations from area businesses;

• Help plan a Safe Grad dance for adults;

• Sell food/beverages at the basketball game concession stand;

• Organize a family portrait fundraiser;

• Organize a raffle.

All of these activities will help us to raise the money we need to provide a safe, fun and engaging graduation night for our students.

The next two meetings are very important – so please mark your calendar! They will be held in the VRHS Conference Room (109). We’ve got lots to do – so, if everyone pitches in, we can make it happen!

February 3 – 6:30 p.m.

HOMELESSNESS AWARENESS

About 100 folks – youth and adults from the Chester, Deep River, Essex, Haddam East Haddam and Higganum United Church of Christ churches will be gathering at the United Church of Chester this Saturday for a Homelessness Awareness event. A cardboard “village” will be erected on the church grounds and participants will be sleeping out in solidarity with homeless folks in our region.

If you would like to support this event please stop by and make a donation of money or clothing: Socks, hats, mittens/gloves, scarves, LONG UNDERWEAR, new or gently used (good condition) sleeping bags, or any winter weather gear in good shape or new. Financial donations will go to the Eddy Homeless Shelter in Middletown; clothing and other items will be distributed through St Vincent De Paul Center in Middletown.

Also next weekend (February 6 and 7) the United Church of Chester will be participating in the Souper Bowl of Caring and collecting food and money for the Shoreline Soup Kitchens and Pantries. The public can drop off contributions on Saturday February 6 at the church from 9-12.

PILLARS OF CHESTER

The Pillars of Chester Committee is looking for volunteers to help plan an event to honor Chester Volunteers for their efforts to improve the quality of life of Chester. Interested parties can leave a comment on the blog and I will make sure the appropriate committee members get the message.

BUDGET SEASON

The FY 2011 budget season is underway. The various boards, departments, and educational institutions have been at work for quite some time laying groundwork. The budget workshops and various meetings are kicking into gear. I have attached the meeting schedules for the town budget and the education budget.

There is ample opportunity for residents to get and stay informed on the financial matters of the town. There is also ample opportunity to provide feedback. For example:

– The current town budget is posted on the website and updated monthly: http://www.chesterct.org/finance.php
– A form is available on the town website for budget suggestion and comments. The form can be filled out on line and submitted electronically with a click of the button. Follow the link, scroll down the page and look for the “submit your ideas” box on the right. http://www.chesterct.org/finance.php
– All meeting are always open to the public and offer opportunities for resident input, both verbal and written.
– As the process moves along we will update our Tax calculators, which are tools to help explain where your tax money goes, and what impact changes in taxes have on your specific bill. http://www.chesterct.org/taxcalc.htm
– I expect to have an on-line survey again this year that residents can use to indicate their preferences on taxation and municipal services.

WHAT ABOUT THE BRIDGE???

I met with the DOT earlier this month to review progress on the Route 154 Bridge as well as progress on the two future bridge projects. I have been told that the mid May scheduled opening date is on target. I have been encouraged by the DOT’s willingness to work with us on design features and construction schedules for the Water St. and Main St. bridges. Final schedules for these projects have not been set.

Tom

http://www.chesterct.org

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