New Year’s wishes – 2020
With the coming of the New Year – and no, the new decade doesn’t start until 2021 – the West Haven Voice has given three major goals it hopes the city and residents accomplish in the next 12 months. In many cases over the years, the goals and accomplishments are recurring. Brevity and expediency – getting things done in a timely manner under this definition – are not the city’s strong suits. As we enter 2020, we hope the coming year finds us fulfilling these goals:
The Haven – This has been a goal for the last several years, and we’re unsure it will be accomplished in 2020. The revelation last year that the Haven Group, the developers overseeing the site, have expected state funding to help the process puts much of the last four years into perspective.
According to the developers, certain promises were given to the group regarding city attempts under the O’Brien administration, to gain state funds to help enable the project. The languishing and decay of the site area then becomes more understood. The developers might have, indeed, sought DOT plan approvals, and other bureaucratic red tape might have been cut through, but the major hold up is the promised funding.
This makes the success – or even the potential completion – of the project murkier. For years we were told permits would be sought, giving the city millions in revenue. When it came down to it, the group was looking for funds.
What we hope for in the coming year is closure one way or the other. Is the Haven going to be completed? If so, when? The promise of the Christmas of 2021 or 2022 seems somewhat remote at this point. We are at a point when a decision one way or the other must be made crystal clear by the developers to the city. Full stop.
Charter Revision – The 18-month review of the charter and proposed revisions were filed last summer. We hope over the first quarter or at most by the end of the second quarter the revisions will be put to the voters. The City Council in its last term completed its work, what needs to be done now is setting a date for the referendum.
Because of the interweaving of the revisions, one to another, that vote has to be an up-or-down one. Some members were hoping for the city to slice and dice the questions into several, making it easier for the voters. However, doing so would play havoc with the whole document. The changes are so interwoven, doing so could potentially set up a chaotic situation with some parts approved and others not – thus making the whole document inoperable.
Return of the Savin Rock Festival – It has been two years since the Rossi administration canceled the Savin Rock Festival because of financial constraints. While we concur the city should not spend money it doesn’t have, we wonder if some other accommodation could have been made.
Regardless, with the city having a better bankbook, the festival’s return was mentioned as a probability this year. We hope so. The taxpayers of West Haven get very little in the way of payback for their levies. This is one of them.
We hope over the next several months a committee will be formed and the three-day celebration be put back on the schedule of events. We also hope that concerts, once a summer-long staple will be increased. Finding sponsors and getting performers for summer music lovers should be another “perk” taxpayers get for their buck.
In the next 12 months, the city can make great strides in becoming an even better place, and solving some of its internal problems. We hope in the first editorial of 2021, we are able to tout those accomplishments.