Official Release - Office of the Mayor - September 17, 2021 - RE: DC Moore School

Official Release
Office of the Mayor
September 17, 2021
RE: DC Moore School

(East Haven, CT) ……From day 1, my administration has been focused on
determining the use of the former D.C. Moore property that is in the best interest of
the residents of East Haven. The 10-acre site is surrounded by precious natural
resources. The Shoreline Greenway Trail provides East Haven residents with a
beautiful recreational space to enjoy, and is an asset with which to teach students
about science, nature and environmental resources. A mile of the trail has been
completed in East Haven, connecting the subject property to Short Beach Road. I,
along with democratic town council members, Joe Deko, Joe Santino, Lou Pacelli,
and former council member Nick Palladino voted against the sale of the subject
property as members of the Town Council two years ago. However, we were
outvoted, and as a result we all; me as Mayor, and all our residents, inherited an
ordinance approving the sale of the property. To be clear, the Town has not sold
the property, has not signed a contract to sell the property, but has instead been
performing the due diligence that is necessary, and appropriate whenever the sale
of any Town-owned land is considered. The Town has also received important
feedback from neighbors and other residents, many of whom have expressed
concerns ranging from historical drainage problems at the site to the potential
exacerbation of drainage issues due to any proposed development, to the need for
more open space in East Haven. We are also concerned about potential impacts on
nearby wetlands.

During the past 18 months, we have all developed a greater appreciation of
the physical and emotional benefits of being outdoors – whether for recreation or
simply to enjoy nature in a calm, tranquil environment. Our due diligence has
confirmed what I, council members Deko, Santino, Pacelli and Palladino believed
at the time when we voted against this transfer – that it is in the best interest of
East Haven for this 10-acre site to be converted to open space. Quality of life

considerations have always been important to the determination of the best use of the subject property. Significant work will be required to address the issues at the site, funding will be required, and we also must further evaluate how this site fits within the Town’s open space planning.
Our due diligence has included not just an evaluation of the impact of potential development of the site, but also consideration of what is necessary to properly convert the site to open space. My administration prefers a thoughtful, methodical approach to problem solving; we will not undertake any significant endeavor without conducting the proper due diligence and planning; East Haven taxpayers deserve thoughtful leadership. When our due diligence and planning is complete, we will be presenting our proposed plan to the Town Council for its consideration and action.