‘Counselor, Partner, Sounding Board and Thinker’: Board of Finance Thanks Neil Budnick, Stepping Down After 15 Years

Members of the Board of Finance last week offered high praise for a fellow member of the appointed body who is stepping down after 15 years. Neil Budnick has been “a phenomenal counselor, partner, sounding board and thinker,” Board Chair Lavieri said during the group’s regular meeting held June 7 at Town Hall and via videoconference. 

“You have added so much value to this board on all of the things you’ve done,” he said. “On anything you’ve done. And you always raise your hand, and you’re always willing to help and you always go the extra mile. Town pensions are overfunded, and there’s a lot of guidance there from the committee, yourself included, of course.

Moynihan: Playhouse To Have New Movie Operator in September at the Earliest

The town-owned Playhouse on Elm Street likely will have a new operator in September at the earliest, First Selectman Kevin Moynihan said this week. The town “may have news about a potential operator soon,” Moynihan told members of the Board of Finance during their regular meeting Tuesday, held via videoconference. Municipal officials “are working on the assumption that the town wants a first-run movie theater and that’s what we’re working on,” he told the Board during a general update. “If we can’t achieve that, we would look to other things,” he said. “But I think that’s a consensus in the town and certainly it supports restaurants and merchants to bring people to New Canaan.

‘We Are Going To Ask Residents To Be Very Understanding’: Natural Gas, Water Main Work Planned for Downtown

Calling this “the year of infrastructure in the downtown area,” the head of the New Canaan Department of Public Works said Monday that officials will ask for understanding from locals as long-planned and necessary water main, natural gas and sewer work gets underway. Within the next week or so, Aquarion will start a water main installation on Main Street from Oak to Church Streets, then up Church to South Avenue and into the downtown, Public Works Director Tiger Mann said during a regular meeting of the Selectmen’s Advisory Committee on Buildings and Infrastructure. The main will run from the intersection of South and Cherry to Main Street and then all the way up Main to Locust Avenue, Mann said. “So that entire downtown stretch, that kind of two-block, three-block stretch in the downtown, is going to be kind of difficult,” he said during the meeting, held via videoconference. 

At the same time, Eversource will be installing a natural gas line on Main Street between East and Locust Avenues, and then down Locust to Forest Street, he said. Once they’re done, the town will commence sewer work.

Officials To Recommend Creation of Town-District Combined ‘Task Force’ To Determine Future Home of Board of Education [CORRECTED]

New Canaan should appoint a task force of town and school district representatives to evaluate what are the best options for a future Board of Education home, according to a primary recommendation committee that’s writing a soon-to-be-released report on the state, uses, capital needs and future of municipally owned buildings. Referring to the former Outback Teen Center as the ‘Town Hall annex,’ the committee also is to recommend that the long-vacant structure be used to house an alternative high school program. The Town Building Evaluation & Use Committee also will recommend that New Canaan “provide funds for architectural engineering designs to address long-delayed, necessary capital improvements at the police station,” co-chairman Amy Murphy Carroll said at the group’s most recent meeting, held Nov. 29 at Town Hall. She read from the Executive Summary of a draft report that’s expected to be presented this month to the Board of Selectmen, Board of Finance and Town Council.