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Minutes of ARPA Funds Working Group, 04/14/2022

AGENDA: ARPA Funds Working Group

RECEIVED 04/25/2022 10:17am
Michele R. Grande – Redding Town Clerk

Minutes of the ARPA Funds Working Group (Filed Subject for Approval)
April 14, 2022, by Zoom

Attending: Brianna Carvalho, Karen Gifford, Wes Higgins, Mary Dale Lancaster, Ward Mazzucco, Chris Parkin, James Sanders, Julia Pemberton

The meeting was called to order at 5:01 pm by Chair Higgins.

The minutes of the March 31, 2022 meeting were reviewed.

Motion to adopt minutes (W. Mazzucco, K. Gifford) Adopted by unanimous vote 7-0.

Chris Parkin explained the request by the Redding Board of Education to resurface the recreation area behind the kindergarten area at the Elementary school. The group discussed the proposal, and the need to move ahead quickly to have the recreation area available during the summer months.

Motion (W. Mazzucco, J. Sanders) To recommend to the Board of Selectmen that they approve the expenditure of ARPA funds for the proposal by the Board of Education to repave the recreation area next to the Elementary School. The expected total expenditure is approximately $40,000. The Working Group determined the expenditure is ARPA eligible under expenditure category 6.1.

6 In Favor (Mary Campbell, Brianna Carvalho, Karen Gifford, Wes Higgins, Mary Dale Lancaster, Ward Mazzucco, James Sanders) Chris Parkin abstained.

Julia presented the Town’s request to fund the Police Department’s purchase of bodycams, dashboard cams, and software required by July 1, 2022 to meet new State of Connecticut Police Accountability Act. The cost estimate is $113,000. Julia asked that the Working Group not take action on a recommendation until after the Town referendum results are available regarding the Police bodycam request

Motion (W. Mazzucco, M. Lancaster) To postpone the Working Group’s vote until after the Town referendum results on the Police bodycams are available.   

6 In Favor (Brianna Carvalho, Karen Gifford, Mary Dale Lancaster, Ward Mazzucco, Chris Parkin, James Sanders) 1 Opposed (W. Higgins).

Mary Dale Lancaster introduced the request by the Town to install a retractable room divider between the two small offices in the Heritage Center that would allow the space to be opened for use by larger group activities. The estimated cost is $50,000. Julia noted that a larger study of the Community Center to include the Park and Rec needs will be undertaken in the future.

Ward Mazzucco made a motion to recommend the project to the Board of Selectmen and Wes seconded the motion.  Jim Sanders stated his preference to hold up the vote to allow consideration of this project along with the several expected proposals to be reviewed during May and June. Karen Gifford agreed with Jim and noted this project didn’t require immediate action.   Briana agreed with Karen that the vote should be postponed. Ward, noting the views of the other members, withdrew his motion.

The communication and outreach efforts were discussed with general agreement that proposals from organizations be structured as requests from beneficiaries and not as sub-recipients per the ARPA legislative definitions.

Adjourned 6.08 pm (C. Parkin, K. Gifford)

Submitted by Wes Higgins