Old Town Hall (Directions)
611 Old Post Road
Fairfield, CT 06824
Sullivan Independence Hall
725 Old Post Road
Fairfield, CT 06824
Find additional contact info here
3/18/2022 - 3.18 TOWN UPDATE
I joined with our residents yesterday morning to raise the Irish and American Flags in celebration of St. Patrick's Day. While we came together to honor Irish heritage, I couldn’t help but think of the pain and suffering every culture that makes up the melting pot of the United States has endured. The Irish join so many other nations in having faced inhumanity, war, and fighting for democracy and freedom from oppression. Yesterday I spoke about all Americans who come from different lands feeling such deep compassion for the people of Ukraine. We are blessed to live in a country that is free and in a Town that celebrates the different cultures that live within our borders.
As war rages on in Ukraine, the Ukrainian Flag continues to fly proudly in front of Town Hall. I am overwhelmed with joy for the love our community has shown for the Ukrainian people. It was inspiring to join our community and so many Ukrainian American citizens at the March 5th rally to show our strong support for Ukraine. I join our citizens in wanting to stop this brutal and senseless war.
Special thanks to the Ukrainian American Club in Southport for organizing the rally, the Fairfield Police Department for ensuring everyone was safe, and the Southport Fire Department for their show of support!
More Ways to Get Involved and Help:
If you are not able to bring items to donate and want to make a financial contribution, you can do so through the Stand with Ukraine Fundraiser at this link.
You can also join the Fairfield Clergy Association for an interfaith prayer vigil for Ukraine on Monday, March 28th at 5:00 PM. It will take place at St. Paul's Episcopal Church on the front lawn, 661 Old Post Road (Located next to the Old Town Hall).
TOWN GOVERNMENT NEWS
On March 10th, the Board of Finance (BOF) officially took up the Town budget after it was passed by the Board of Selectmen. You can watch the BOF first budget hearing here.
On Tuesday, March 15th, the BOF held their budget hearing with the Board of Education, which you can watch here. On Wednesday, the BOF held budget hearings with several Town Departments with discussions on Paving, Public Works, and Parks and Recreation, which you can watch here. To view all relevant budget documents and the schedule to watch meetings visit www.fairfieldct.org/budget. The BOF will be meeting for the remainder of the month of March and is scheduled to hold its final deliberations and vote on March 31st. Following the vote, the Town budget will head to the RTM. You can view the entire Town budget schedule here.
CHARTER REVISION COMMISSION
On March 10th, the Charter Revision Commission held a public comment session regarding Town governance. After the public comment, the Commission discussed various topics, including minority party representation, constables, the commencement of terms of elected officials, resignations and vacancies, and the structure of Town government. There was consensus building around a possible recommendation to make the RTM smaller. There was also a discussion about the roles and responsibilities of the Board of Selectmen (BOS), and whether or not the BOS should be dissolved with more authority granted to the RTM. No votes have been taken as the Commission continues to fact gather while weighing all these important governance issues.
You can view the Commission's discussion of these topics here, as well as the public comment here. While public participation in this process has been low, I highly encourage our residents to participate, as it is critical to this process. I find the discussion of our Town's governing document to be fascinating, and if you would like to catch up on the Commission's prior discussions of our Town Charter, you can view them here.
CAPITAL PLAN WORKING GROUP
As I shared during the Town's Capital Plan workshop, my State of the Town address, and in several meetings since, I have assembled a Capital Plan Working Group. I asked members from both parties, the Board of Finance (BOF), Representative Town Meeting (RTM), the Board of Education (BOE), and critical department heads and staff, to come together to discuss which projects we want to put on our Capital Plan for the immediate future and then work to craft a 5-year plan for our Town. The first meeting's conversation was centered on financing and determining how much the Town can afford to bond each year. At our next meeting later this month, the group will review Capital Projects for Fiscal Year 2023. Following the conclusion of the first phase of this working group will enable me to have a list of projects that I can bring forward before the BOS, BOF, and RTM for review and approval. I look forward to working with these stakeholders to develop a 5-year Capital Plan for our Town's elected bodies to consider.
DUCK FARM ROAD BRIDGE DEMOLITION & RECONSTRUCTION
The Town's Engineering Department is having a pre-construction meeting next week to go over the plans for the Duck Farm Road Bridge reconstruction project, which will begin next month. In November, the Board of Selectmen approved the project, and the Town has since been going through the permitting process with the State. Some residents may have noticed that some work has been taking place on the bridge by public utilities and is separate from the Town's proposed work. As more details emerge from the pre-construction meeting, I will share them with our residents. The proposed detour map is listed below and will also be reviewed at the March pre-construction meeting. If you have any questions regarding this project, please contact the Town's Engineering Department at (203) 256-3015. Please click on the image to view it larger.
ARBOR DAY FOUNDATION
The Town of Fairfield has proudly received the 2021 Tree City USA accreditation on behalf of the Arbor Day Foundation for the 34th year in a row! I am proud to live in a community that is so environmentally conscious and prioritizes planting and caring for our Town's trees. Town Tree Warden, Jeffrey Minder, has worked vigorously maintaining Fairfield's forestry and ensuring the conservation of our land. This is a wonderful accreditation to receive as Arbor Day is approaching April 29th. If you are interested in learning more about Fairfield's Tree Planting Program, please click here.
STATE GOVERNMENT NEWS
Several bills are being proposed in the State Legislature that I feel residents should be aware of, as they could greatly impact our Town.
AFFORDABLE HOUSING & 8-30g
There are currently proposed bills that could impact local zoning laws and study the 8-30g State Statue. I submitted testimony articulating suggested changes to the statute which you can read here. I also submitted testimony in opposition to HB 5429, which is another bill that would take away local control from our zoning regulations that you can read here.
BEACH ACCESS & PARKING
I would like to thank the residents of our community who have written testimony in opposition to HB 5254 and HB 5361. As I shared in my previous newsletter, these bills would prevent the Town of Fairfield, and other shoreline communities, from restricting access to parking near a public entrance to a public beach, recreational area, or scenic area. Anthony Calabrese, our Town's Parks & Recreation Director, wrote compelling testimony opposing these bills and I also submitted testimony in strong opposition to HB 5361, which you can read here. As this bill would directly impact Fairfield's residents, I implore you to get involved in the process by contacting your state representatives.
BIPARTISAN FAIRFIELD LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS ADVISORY COUNCIL
I welcomed Governor Lamont and other state and local officials to Fairfield University last week to discuss Cyber Security and its critical role in both the public and private sectors. Fairfield University's School of Engineering launched a Cyber Security graduate program in the fall of 2020 and launched a state-of-the-art cybersecurity lab to provide critical training. The University plans to open the lab for community events and partner with the private sector as well. News 12 Connecticut provided coverage of the press event you can watch here.
MS AWARENESS WEEK/ORANGE DAY
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a neurological disease that affects the central nervous system that impacts nearly one million people in the United States alone and currently has no known cure. MS Awareness Week, which is dedicated to sharing stories of individuals diagnosed with MS and raising awareness to help find a cure, begins on March 13th and ends on the 19th. Last week, I had the privilege of awarding Riverfield 4th grader Sydney Carroll a proclamation for taking the initiative to create and present a proposal to Riverfield's principal, Brenda Anziano, to raise awareness about MS. Sydney was inspired by her beloved grandma, who has lived with a progressive form of MS for over 40 years. I also had the opportunity to meet three other wonderful students who have been directly or indirectly affected by MS in their lives.
Through Sydney's dedicated efforts, Riverfield Elementary School held an Orange Day for MS during National MS Awareness Week to educate the Riverfield community about MS, engage students in a day of action, and raise critical funds for research and services. All proceeds will be donated to the National MS Society. If you want to learn more about Multiple Sclerosis and what you can do to help individuals with MS and their families, please visit the National Multiple Sclerosis Society's website.
BELOVED ENVIRONMENTAL CHAMPION HONORED
I had the opportunity last week to proudly honor Joy Shaw on her 91st birthday and recognize her remarkable efforts in educating the community about the value of wetlands and advocating for the protection of Fairfield's environment. Over fifty years ago, Joy bravely stood in front of a man operating heavy machinery and prevented him from destroying the invaluable Mill River Wetlands. Joy’s passion and determination led her to create the Mill River Wetland Committee (MRWC), an important organization that provides hands-on learning opportunities for Fairfield students.
Joy founded the popular River-Lab program, which has taught generations of Fairfield’s students and parents the value of watersheds and encourages our youth to become responsible stewards by advocating for watershed conservation and engaging with the challenges facing our environment. Joy had an impact on me on, as I enjoyed volunteering as a Mill River Wetland Captain while my son was in elementary school. I am extremely appreciative of Joy’s steadfast protection and advocacy of the Mill River Wetlands that continues to inspire future generations.
ST. BALDRICKS FOUNDATION
In support of the St. Baldrick's Foundation, the Tree of Hope on the Sherman Green has been lit up green. To help fight pediatric cancer and fund its research, St. Baldrick's raises millions of dollars worldwide yearly. Jessica Gerber, a Fairfield resident and Board of Education member, lost her son, Teddy, tragically to pediatric cancer. Jessica, her husband, Bill, her son, John, and her daughter, Gillian, have turned the pain of their loss into action by organizing numerous events to raise money for research that goes towards grants to allow scientists to better understand pediatric cancer and how to treat it more effectively, giving children like Teddy a better chance to recover.
This beloved and well-attended St. Baldrick's event is back in person tonight at Osborn Hill Elementary School, beginning at 5:30 PM. I hope members of our community will join me in supporting this important community event by attending tonight or by showing your support by donating to the St. Baldrick's foundation here.
Photo from Fairfield Parks & Rec
ANDREW FULLER'S LIFE SAVING MISSION
In my last newsletter, I highlighted Fairfield Warde sophomore, Andrew Fuller, for his dedicated efforts to raise money to install defibrillators for Fairfield’s beaches, with the hope to show residents the importance of these life-saving devices. Andrew organized this project with the Fairfield Parks & Recreation Department and Police and Fire Departments to get permanent AEDs installed at Town beaches. Andrew's passion has been covered by the Fairfield Citizen, and news about this life-saving project has now been widespread throughout Fairfield. On Monday, March 14th, representatives from Bridgeport Hospital and Yale-New Haven Hospital’s Center for Injury and Violence Prevention presented a sizeable check to Andrew to help fund the defibrillator installation.
The check, which amounts to over $4,000, will purchase two AEDs for Fairfield, and Andrew will continue promoting his GoFundMe for the purchase of safety boxes for the installations as well as additional AEDs.
FAIRFIELD UNIVERSITY HOSTS PREMIER LACROSSE LEAGUE
The Premier Lacrosse League (PLL) has announced that the league will travel to Connecticut for the first time! Fairfield University's Rafferty Stadium is excited to host four games from July 23rd to July 24th on Conway Field. This is a fantastic opportunity to join together as a community and support the eight Premier Lacrosse League players who hail from Connecticut and are returning to their home turf. Pre-sale tickets are available now here. If you are a lacrosse fan and want to attend all four games, you can purchase your weekend pass here.
FUNDING AVAILABLE FOR HOME REPAIRS
Spring showers bring…home repairs? If you’re a Fairfield homeowner dealing with a leaky roof or if you’re needing to make other repairs to your home, the Community & Economic Development Department may be able to help. Eligible homeowners can receive up to 60% of the total project cost, up to a maximum of $15,000 per qualified applicant, per year. Financial assistance is provided in the form of a special, no-interest loan that is repaid when the owner sells, refinances, or transfers the property. Eligible home improvements include exterior painting, siding, or roofing projects; installation of new or replacement storm windows and doors; lead-based paint or asbestos abatement projects; installation of replacement boilers or hot water heaters; heating, plumbing, or electrical improvements to address code deficiencies and modifications to accommodate persons with disabilities.
Applicants must be income-eligible and a current Town of Fairfield homeowner to participate in this program. Certain other restrictions do apply. For additional information, please contact Sonia Hine at the Office of Community & Economic Development via email at email@example.com or by calling (203) 256-3120.
Below are some additional resources, upcoming events, and opportunities in Town.
I hope you enjoy your weekend.
Brenda L. Kupchick
Fairfield First Selectwoman
The CDC has changed from community transmission indicators to a community indicator based on hospitalization data. CT is currently rated as "low," as is Fairfield County. We don't have word yet on how CT DPH will change their protocols, but I do believe this is a much better tool in assessing the real impact of COVID in our community at this point in the pandemic.
The Fairfield Public Schools are now operating under mask choice protocol.
For vaccination locations, there are numerous sites available in Fairfield and nearby as well as daily walk-in clinics in many Towns.
There are 10 COVID testing sites in Fairfield under contract to offer no-cost testing to CT residents.
Fairfield's Positivity Rate: 3.5%
Fairfield County Hospitalizations: 33
Vaccine First Dose: 84.27%
FAIRFIELD COVID RESOURCE PAGE
CHANGE YOUR BATTERIES
The Fairfield Fire Department encourages all residents to check their smoke alarms and Carbon Monoxide detectors to ensure they are working properly. The following information is to help make sure your smoke alarms have working batteries, accounting for the multiple types of smoke alarms on the market and their varying battery requirements:
Smoke alarms with non-replaceable 10-year batteries are designed to remain effective for up to 10 years. If the alarm chirps, warning that the battery is low, replace the entire smoke alarm right away.
Smoke alarms of any other type need a new battery at least once a year. When your alarm starts to chirp every 30-60 seconds, please replace the battery right away.
When replacing a battery, follow the manufacturer’s list of batteries on the back of the alarm or the manufacturer’s instructions. The manufacturer’s instructions are specific to the batteries (brand and model) that must be used. The smoke alarm may not work properly if a different kind of battery is used.
For additional information or assistance, please contact the Fairfield Fire Marshal's Office at (203) 254-4720.
Community classes are to be held at the Fairfield Regional Fire School, 205 Richard White Way. If you have questions regarding any of these courses, please contact (203) 254-4708, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thursday Evening, April 21st
7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
$50 per student
CAREERS IN THE TRADES & PUBLIC SAFETY
Thursday, April 28th, Fairfield Warde and Ludlowe High Schools, along with the Wakeman Boys & Girls Club, are hosting their first "Careers in the Trades and Public Safety Expo." The event will take place from 7 PM – 8 PM at the Wakeman Boys & Girls Club, 386 Center Street in Southport, where students from grades 8 – 12 are invited to attend. This expo will be a tremendous opportunity to share information about your company, industry, and educate students on different career paths.
Space will be limited, so reserve your spot today! Please contact Alice Gorman at email@example.com.
STATE NEIGHBORHOOD ASSISTANCE ACT PROGRAM
The Town of Fairfield, through its Office of Community & Economic Development, is again, soliciting program proposals from municipal agencies and community non-profit organizations for funding consideration under the State’s Neighborhood Assistance Act (NAA) program. This program allows businesses to claim a State tax credit for cash contributions made to qualifying community programs conducted by tax-exempt or municipal agencies. The types of community programs that qualify for the NAA tax credit program include, but are not necessarily limited to: energy conservation; employment and training; child care services; neighborhood assistance; substance abuse; open space acquisition; crime prevention programs, and affordable housing development.
The minimum contribution on which a tax credit may be granted is $250, and the maximum contribution that any non-profit or municipal entity can receive under this program is $150,000. For further information about the Neighborhood Assistance Act Program or to receive an application packet, please contact the Office of Community & Economic Development at (203) 256-3120 or go to the DRS website at https://portal.ct.gov/drs. Businesses wishing to take advantage of this program in order to reduce their State tax liability may also contact this office for further information. All applications must be received by close of business on April 22, 2022, in order to be considered.
The Capalbo Strong Fashion Show will take place on April 4th at The Brick Walk, and will begin promptly at 5:00 PM. I encourage you to attend in support of Charlie and his family or visit Charlie's GoFundMe, which was created in 2017 to help cover the expenses as Charlie courageously undergoes his fourth round of chemotherapy.
Starting March 27th, Metro-North will expand its number of active railways during the work week. This will increase the number of trains running from 244 to 278, making commutes much easier for those who work in the City. Metro-North is bringing this focus to their New Haven, Stamford, and New York City lines, as well as restoring express trains. This change will bring them closer to returning to their normal service, pre-pandemic.
IRELAND'S GREAT HUNGER MUSEUM
It is always exciting when you have the opportunity to immerse yourself in stories of the past and learn more about other cultures. Fairfield's rich history is only getting larger as Quinnipiac University's, Ireland's Great Hunger Museum, is moving to Downtown Fairfield. The museum's collection is in the works of being transferred to the Gaelic-American Club of Fairfield. This plan will take about a year or two to carry out, but it will definitely be worth the wait! Once doors open, residents and other visitors will be able to admire the world's largest collection of art dedicated to the Great Hunger (1845 -1852) and support our Irish American community. If you would like to read more about the steps being taken to preserve these amazing pieces of history, please click here, or visit their website.
Photo from Google Images
UNITED WAY FAIRFIELD COUNTY
I am pleased to announce Fairfield's continued partnership with United Way with the launch of our Annual United Way Workplace Campaign, which will begin March 17th and run through Friday, April 8, 2022.
Fairfield residents who are in need of help during these difficult times have benefited from our partnership with United Way. Whether in need of emergency support, relief paying overdue bills, help finding masks, tests, or facing a mental health crisis, United Way has been with us, every step of the way, to help meet the ever-changing needs of our community.
Town Hall will join me in supporting our friends and neighbors here in Fairfield who need our help and support. Every single dollar donated to the United Way goes directly back into our community. In addition to emergency support, the United Way has had a longstanding partnership with the McKinley school, providing over $50,000 for support with reading, literacy, and tutoring programs to help our children keep up to speed during this difficult learning environment.
The Town of Fairfield has a strong tradition of support for this campaign, and unfortunately, the need has not diminished. I am optimistic we will be able to reach our campaign goal of $4,000. This fundraiser will have a personal and powerful impact on those who need our support.
PURCHASE YOUR 2022 GOLF ID
RENEW YOUR 2022 BEACH/TRANSFER STATION STICKER
BIGELOW CENTER FOR SENIOR ACTIVITIES
Fairfield senior center's mission is to provide services and programs for older adults that promote well being, support independence, and encourage involvement in community life. To become more involved with local activities and stay informed on news surrounding the Senior Center, you can view their Newsletter.
The Town of Fairfield Transfer Station has added a GLASS ONLY collection bin along with our mixed recycling bins. I hope residents will take advantage of this opportunity which will help save the Town money in recycling costs – but also will help our efforts to be a more environmentally conscious community. We would like to encourage residents to separate their glass containers and drop them off at the Transfer Station. As always, recycling is at no charge to residents with a valid beach sticker. You can read more information here.
The hardest part of getting help is reaching out. We are here to help. Please call us at (203) 256-3170 Monday through Friday between 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM for more information or to schedule an appointment.
For more additional information and resources, social services offers a comprehensive newsletter with various programs addressing career development, service members, and housing here.
FAIRFIELD PUBLIC LIBRARIES
Both branches of Fairfield Public Library are open the following hours: Monday – Thursday, 9:00 AM – 8:00 PM; Friday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM, and Saturday and Sunday, 1:00 – 5:00 PM.
The 2022 Community Report from our Town Librarian, Scott Jarzombek, is here. Read more at https://fairfieldpubliclibrary.org/community-report/
Meeting rooms at both libraries have reopened for outside rentals. Reservations can be made online via the Library’s website.
Free tax assistance is once again being offered at Main Library on Tuesdays until April 12, 2022. IRS-certified counselors will meet with residents between 9:30 AM – 4:00 PM on a first-come, first-served basis; no appointment is necessary. This service is intended for low- and middle-income households and those over age 60, although all individuals will be assisted.
The Bruce S. Kershner Art Gallery Committee at Main Library welcomes the public to view its current show, “Color Play.” The exhibit features the work of Earl Grenville Killeen, Dionne Pia, and Emily Teall and runs through April 2nd during Library hours.
It’s not too late to join the Library’s Adult Reading Challenge, going on now until Dec. 31, 2022! Explore new genres, discover new authors, and be entered to win prizes while you enjoy reading. Read just one book from each genre listed before midnight on New Year’s Eve to complete the challenge! Check the Library’s website for information on how to get started.
Coming in April: National Library Week (April 3rd – 9th); Author Event at SHU Community Theatre (April 7th); Friends of the Library Mini-Golf Event at Main Library (April 10th, all ages).
Current mask policy: Masks are welcomed at Fairfield Public Library.
The Library continues to offer a mix of in-person and virtual programming at both locations for children, teens and adults. Please view our online calendar of events on our website (www.fairfieldpubliclibrary.org) to see the offerings and reserve your spot!
Fairfield Public Library offers 24/7 access to its digital collection of books, music, magazines, movies and databases. Information services are available in person, by phone (203-256-3160), by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and via text messaging (text askfplct to 833-232-4100).
Pequot Library: We're Here, We Care – We are open for browsing! Visit Monday-Friday, 10 AM – 6 PM, Saturday 10 AM – 4 PM, and Sunday Noon – 4 PM. Drop in during browsing hours to check out items from our circulating selection, see our latest exhibit in the Perkin Gallery, or view treasures from our Special Collections.
Now on view: Magic, Mayhem, & Maturity: The Growth of Youth Fantasy Literature
Drawing on materials from the Children’s Historical Collection and the modern circulating collection, this exhibition examines the emergence and evolution of youth fantasy literature. Oftentimes, stories from this genre use magic as a metaphor for the turbulent transition from childhood to adulthood. Spanning fairy tales to 19th century works like Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz to more modern stories like Harry Potter, Children of Blood and Bone and The Gilded Ones, this exhibition further explores how these stories have evolved to tackle this transition in a more frank manner and, significantly, to embrace all voices.
For more programming, visit Upcoming Events – Pequot Library
Get details on our website and social media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. Sign up for Pequot Library's Digital Digest eNewsletter or contact our Chief Librarian for personalized book recommendations.
Struggling to make ends meet?
Reminder: Operation Hope’s Food Pantry is here to serve all Fairfield residents. We are open at 636 Old Post Road Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM and Thursday from 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM. Please let us help you with groceries and other basic necessities!
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