Westport grant

TO THE EDITOR: In the May 9 Valley News, the Editorial Board questioned the wisdom of Westport accepting a grant to help fix the Town Hall. Let me offer an answer to that question.

Mr. Connell and others have worked for years trying to resolve problems with the Highway Garage, Fire Department and Town Hall. No matter what solution was presented, there were others working hard at sabotaging those plans.

Yes, the Highway Garage needs replacing, as does the Fire Station. The Town Hall also needs replacing, but the people voted to keep town offices where they are so the only solution is to fix the current Town Hall.

The monies to be used are not for “pretty,” as suggested; it’s for necessary foundation and structural repairs to stop the building from eventual collapse.

The true cost to renovate this building, including structural deficiencies, is double what is proposed. The offices are an ice box in winter and an oven in summer. Windows do not work properly, and carpeting is from the 1970s. Functional obsolescence abounds, parking is insufficient, and safety issues are numerous.

Town employees should be given hazard pay for working in this building. I know because I worked there. Something needs to be done before people are injured or worse.

If you want to question someone’s wisdom, question those who worked to sabotage the efforts of Mr. Connell and others while offering nothing in return.


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