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State to Purchase Land for State Police Training Facility

State to Purchase Land for State Police Training Facility
   

Griswold site to be evaluated before State acquisition

For several years, the Department of Administrative Services (DAS) has been assisting the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP) in siting a new training facility to replace its existing facility in Simsbury. The Simsbury facility, in use since the 1940s, is outdated, too small for modern training requirements and is prone to flooding and erosion which cannot be abated. The applicable laws concerning development in flood-prone areas preclude the improvements necessary to maintain the facility.

A purchase and sale agreement for parcels at 100 and 101 Lee Road in Griswold, Connecticut, has been approved by the Office of Policy and Management (OPM), the State Properties Review Board (SPRB) and the Attorney General. Under the purchase and sale agreement , DAS and DESPP will now commence a “due diligence period” during which the agencies identify any legal or environmental issues that may impact transfer of the property. Once this due diligence period is completed, the agencies will conduct an Environmental Impact Evaluation (EIE) under the Connecticut Environmental Policy Act (CEPA) to determine potential impacts of the new facility to the property and the surrounding area.

The contiguous parcels, comprised of approximately 113 acres, are abutted entirely by the Pachaug State Forest and the private Mystic Rod &Gun Club, Inc. The nearest residence is more than half a mile away.

The EIE will explore a variety of issues that are customarily raised, including noise, impact on wildlife, groundwater, traffic and any other issue raised during the early CEPA scoping process. Prior to the EIE, there will be an opportunity for public comment at a meeting in Griswold to discuss the scope of the EIE, anticipated to take place in May. Notice of the meeting, and the comment period that will follow, will appear in the Environmental Monitor.

The EIE may take up to a year or more to complete. There will then be a second public meeting in the town to consider the EIE, as well as an additional comment period, before the final Record of Decision (ROD) is completed. The ROD will address the public’s comments about the EIE. Once the agencies have completed the ROD, it is submitted to OPM for a determination of adequacy. The purchase agreement allows the State to terminate the agreement if the due diligence is not satisfactory to the State or the EIE process does not result in final approval by OPM.

If approved, design and construction of the facility will be undertaken by DAS. The agencies are considering a number of design options but the facility may include classrooms and range staff offices in addition to the basic outdoor firing ranges.

This acquisition will allow the State to develop a sustainable and resilient facility in order to maintain and improve a core function of the State Police. The facility will support the modern and ever-changing training needs of the State Police for the foreseeable future.

For further information concerning the purchase and the EIE process, contact:

Jeffrey Beckham

jeffrey.beckham@ct.gov

860-713-5195

For further information concerning the State Police training facility and program, contact:

Lt. Marc Petruzzi

Marc.F.Petruzzi@ct.gov

860-685-8248 

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