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Journal Inquirer: U.S. House panel backs Courtney on Connecticut projects

July 22, 2021
In The News

The U.S. House Appropriations Committee voted Friday to support several of Rep. Joseph D. Courtney’s funding requests for eastern Connecticut projects, including $2.5 million for upgrades to the Enfield train station, $2 million for fixing crumbling foundations, and $792,000 for repairs to the New England Motorcycle Museum building in Vernon.

To become law, the funding bill would require approval by the full House and Senate and would have to be signed by President Joe Biden.

Five of Courtney’s community project funding requests were included in the latest fiscal year 2022 funding bill approved in the Appropriations Committee on Friday, his office announced.

The total of the new requests is more than $7.9 million in federal funding.

The funding bill includes $2.5 million to upgrade the Enfield train station with dedicated commuter parking areas, a roundabout, and new sidewalks.

The bills also include $2 million to fix foundations that are crumbling as a result of the mineral pyrrhotite in their concrete.

Crumbling foundations remain “a critical issue in central and northeastern Connecticut,” said Lyle Wray, executive director of the Capitol Region Council of Governments. “This funding will enable many additional homes to be fixed and recover from the overwhelming damage caused by crumbling foundations.”

Mike Maglaras, superintendent of Connecticut Foundations Solutions Indemnity Co. expressed gratitude to Courtney for his “continuing and determined” efforts on the problem.

The New England Motorcycle Museum is in the former Hockanum Textile Mill in Vernon. The $792,000 would be used to repair and restore the building’s roof and other infrastructure.

Also included in the funding bill are $1.95 million to build a new water main and make other upgrades to the water system in Stonington and $700,000 to renovate Scotland, Connecticut’s Town Hall, a 127-year-old building.

“We worked closely with leaders in town government and the nonprofit sector to support these local projects, and this is a big step forward in making it final,” Courtney said. “There’s more work to go until this budget becomes law, but this is where the process begins, and it’s off to a great start for eastern Connecticut.

SPENDING BILL

House Appropriations Committee recommends a spending bill that includes more than $7.9 million in funding for eastern Connecticut projects, including:

  • $2.5 million to upgrade the Enfield train station with dedicated commuter parking areas, a roundabout, and new sidewalks.
  • $2 million to create a Pyrrhotite Remediation Program for residents and towns affected by crumbing foundations.
  • $792,000 to repair and restore the roof and infrastructure of the Hockanum Textile Mill, home of the New England Motorcycle Museum.