Update for 11/20/2020

Good afternoon,

We have had 12 crews working on tree pruning and removal in Easton. They are working along a 47-mile circuit of wires which was work initially planned two to three years ago. This should greatly improve our storm resilience. We are waiting for a status report on the work being done.

As background, the state established an act concerning Enhanced Tree Trimming in 2013. The process is that a work planner from UI  inspects trees and determines which trees need further evaluation. Those trees are marked for remedial pruning or removal. That is only the beginning of the process. From there, the property owner is consulted and then the tree is reviewed by the UI Arborist and the Easton Tree Warden as well as the Tree Service  Foreman.

The Public Utility Regulatory Authority (PURA) empowers this group to make decisions on individual trees. This is the process for selecting trees to be pruned or removed. In addition, the town has pre-filed it’s testimony in the ongoing investigation by PURA into the UI response to this summer’s storm. I am pleased that after all these years we have begun to get this work done!

In Town Hall, we are working on making recordings of town boards, commissions and committee meetings available for viewing on our Town of Easton website. In most cases, boards, commissions and committee recordings exist, and we are working to make them available. Our Town Clerk and Area 9 Cable Council have been working together diligently to create a place, AGENDAS, MINUTES AND RECORDINGS, to house these recordings and make them viewable.

As many of our commission chairs are new to Zoom, there may be some meetings where the recordings were lost due to cloud space issues or never recorded. We are striving to keep up with the demands of the Governor’s Executive Orders. Unlike larger towns, we have neither a communication nor an in-house IT staff.

We remain committed to providing full transparency to the workings of your town government. Please look for updates and specific information from our Town Clerk, Christine Halloran, with procedures for following the Executive Order requirements as well as important information for board, commission and committee members to be aware of in their service to the town. We thank you for your support and dedication to the Town of Easton!

The South Park Advisory Committee is starting to hear proposals for potential uses of the South Park property. The minutes of their last meeting are now posted and can be found under the Board of Selectmen Minutes heading.

Two worthwhile places to donate in the holiday spirit are:

1. The Easton Garden Club Wreath Sale, proceeds going to the donation of wreaths on town buildings and gifts of poinsettias to homebound Easton Seniors. Donations can be made at  https://www.eastongardenclubofct.org/wreath-and-poinsettia-sale.

2. The Easton Police Department’s fund raiser, No Shave November, benefiting the Connecticut Cancer Foundation to support Connecticut cancer patients and their caregivers at https://secure.e2rm.com/p2p/donate/312225/team/928486.

Yesterday, I was honored to participate in the 100th birthday celebration for Peter Bellew. What a great milestone! Happy birthday Peter. 

Val Buckley and our Senior Center delivered 100 turkeys and dinners to people in need in the Lordship area of Stratford. Great job guys!

A quick update about Covid. Unfortunately, the situation continues to worsen. We now have a running two-week average of  24.7 cases per 100,000 people with 26 new cases in the last two weeks. Remember,  we had approximately 30 cases in the first several months of the pandemic. The rise in cases and in subsequent quarantines has led us to join many of the districts in our area in moving our schools to 100% remote learning. It is also straining some of our town services. 

In my family, Thanksgiving is probably the most celebrated holiday of the year and our biggest family get together. I understand how hard it is not to get together in larger groups. I also know how much college students want to use this time to see their friends and out of town family, to visit and share a meal. This is just unsafe in 2020.

It is my greatest hope that this spring or summer will bring some normalcy to our lives with the promise of a vaccine or vaccines on the horizon, but we need to take extra precautions. Wear your mask, sanitize or wash your hands often and social distance. Please be careful and be safe.

Happy Thanksgiving, Easton!                    

Dave Bindelglass

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