Stonington voters head to the polls today to decide if they want to spend $3.5 million for various road improvements and/or $2.7 million to create an artificial tuft athletic field and make improvements to the other athletic fields. Here is a guide to the referendum:
Time And Locations: Polls are open in three voting districts from noon to 8 p.m.
- Districts One and Three vote at the Stonington Fire House at 100 Main St., in Stonington Borough.
- District Two votes at the Pawcatuck Fire House at 33 Liberty St. in Pawcatuck
- Districts Four and Five vote at the B.F. Hoxie Engine Company at the Mystic Fire Department at 34 Broadway Avenue in Mystic.
1. Shall, the Town of Stonington appropriate $3,500,000.00 for various road improvements and authorize the issuance of $3,500,000.00 bonds and notes to finance the appropriation?
2. Shall, the Town of Stonington appropriate $2,700,00.00 for athletic field and facilities improvements and authorize the issuance of $2,700,00.00 bonds and notes to finance the appropriation?
The question of whether or not to spend $2.7 million to improve the athletic fields seems to be the more controversial of the two referendum questions. At the Oct. 9 Special Town Meeting a number of residents voiced concerns over the return on investment.
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In September the Athletic Fields Task Force presented the town with four options for the athletic fields. The first option the Athletic Fields Task Force presented was the doing nothing option, the second option was repairing the softball, boys soccer, field hockey, football and all-purpose fields for about $1.2 million. The third option was to transform Donald E. Palmer Field at Stonington High School into an artificial turf field and then repair the softball, boys soccer, field hockey and the all-purpose fields. The fourth option would build two artificial turf fields and repair the other fields for a cost of about $4.5 million.
Today, residents will vote on option three. According to The Day, if voters reject making improvements to the athletic fields the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference could ban the high school from hosting state tournament games and there could be no more home games. A copy of the plan is available on the town website and is attached to this article.
If voters approve the athletic fields project a homeowner with a house assessed at $225,000 would pay a total of $229.50 in additional taxes over 20 years. A formula to calculate the tax increase is available on the town website and is attached to this article.
The road improvement plan is a four-year plan to repair 49 roads in town. A copy of the plan is available on the town website and is attached to this article. If voters approve the road improvement project a homeowner with a house assessed at $225,000 would pay a total of $301.50 in additional taxes over 20 years. A formula to calculate the tax increase is available on the town website and is attached to this article.