Norwich referendum questions win approval

Norwich — Voters overwhelmingly approved two referendum question Tuesday, one calling for bonding $3.2 million to purchase five firetrucks and possibly other fire equipment and the second to bond $5 million for road and bridge work.

The firetrucks proposal passed 3,116 to 1,808, while the infrastructure proposal passed 2,962 to 1,465.

The referendum questions received little attention throughout the campaign, other than a support rally Saturday, hosted by the Yantic volunteer fire department. Democrats, however, used the bond questions to criticize the Republican-majority City Council for cutting money from the annual capital budget in order to show a budget cut, while shifting the items to bond measures.

The $3.2 million fire bond will pay for the purchase of an engine tanker for the East Great Plain Volunteer Fire Department, a rescue pumper and a large squad vehicle for the Taftville Volunteer Fire Department, a pumper truck for the Yantic volunteer department and a pumper truck for the Laurel Hill volunteer department. The five new firetrucks will replace six vehicles to be removed from service.

The $5 million roadwork bond will cover road paving, bridge work, repair of wharves at Norwich Harbor, drainage work in targeted areas, including Sholes Avenue, Asylum Street, Old Canterbury Turnpike, West Avenue, Teddy Lane and side streets off Laurel Hill Avenue-Route 12. Streets in Greeneville, Thamesville and East Great Plain areas also would be included.

c.bessette@theday.com

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