Town Sues State Over Denial of Affordable Housing Moratorium

Changing a strategy laid out six months ago, the town on Friday sued the Connecticut Department of Housing over its denial of an application for relief from a widely discussed affordable housing law. The agency’s denial was “fundamentally flawed because neither the law nor DOH’s own past precedent supports the interpretation now relied upon by DOH,” according to an administrative appeal filed Dec. 2 in state Superior on the town’s behalf. The Department of Housing “has prejudiced the substantial rights of the Town” because its decision violated state law, according to the complaint, filed on the municipality’s behalf by lawyer Nicholas Bamonte of Berchem Moses PC, the town attorney’s firm. The agency “ acted contrary to its own past practice and procedure under analogous circumstances,” Bamonte said in the six-page complaint.

Town Asks State To Reconsider Denial of Affordable Housing Moratorium Application

Municipal officials are asking the state to reconsider its recent decision to deny the town’s application for four years of relief from an affordable housing law. The Connecticut Department of Housing in its Oct. 18 denial letter to First Selectman Kevin Moynihan said that New Canaan fell short of the required “housing unit equivalent” points required for the moratorium. The town failed to correctly calculate its points, DOH Commissioner Seila Mosquera-Bruno said in the letter, and as a result is not exempt for a four-year period from the state law known by its statute number, 8-30g. Under it, developers who propose housing projects where at least 30% of units will be rented at affordable rates can get around local Planning & Zoning Commission decisions through an appeals process.

Congregational Church, Town Find Contractor To Repair ‘Wayside Cross’ at God’s Acre

The Congregational Church of New Canaan and town have agreed on a contractor to repair a damaged World War I monument on God’s Acre that was damaged during a police pursuit this past summer. The Wayside Cross (local history here) will be repaired by Lorton, Va.-based Rugo Stone, under a $31,166 contract that the Board of Selectmen is scheduled to take up at its regular meeting on Tuesday. The Rev. Dr. Stephen Chapin Garner, senior minister at the Congregational Church, told in an email when asked about the monument’s status that “the church and town have been working really well together” to try and get it repaired in time for the Nov. 11 Veterans Day ceremony at God’s Acre. VFW Post 653 member John McLane, a U.S. Army captain in Vietnam, said that the Wayside Cross at God’s Acre “has been a memorial to those who have lost their lives serving this country since right after World War I.”

“Our New Canaan VFW Post holds a service there every Veterans Day,” McLane said.