Lt. Governor Wyman: East Windsor, Willington Sites Removed From Consideration For State Police Firearms Training Facility
(HARTFORD, CT) - Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman and state officials from the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP) and the Department of Administrative Services (DAS) today announced that the towns of East Windsor and Willington have been removed from consideration as possible sites for the Connecticut State Police Firearms Training Facility. Recently, properties in these towns were identified as potential locations for a new facility, but legislators and local officials asked that alternatives be considered.
Lt. Governor Wyman said, "Our current training range is in bad shape, so it's important to be proactive about siting a new facility. In doing so, we also have to balance any concerns the community brings forward, and ensure that the state continues to be a good neighbor in our communities. Every day our State Troopers are out there serving us, they must have the tools and skills they need to both protect the public and come home to their families at the end of the day."
The State Police's current facility, located along the Farmington River in Simsbury, endures annual flooding that makes it unusable for a portion of the year. In addition, the property is now experiencing worsening erosion, which has accelerated the timetable for relocation.
The Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP) is studying other properties that were volunteered for consideration during community meetings held over the past month by DESPP and DAS. Those towns include Canterbury, Voluntown, Griswold, Hampton, and Sprague.
DESPP Commissioner Dora Schriro said, "Public safety is high among the first duties of government. The firearms range is a critical component to training our Troopers-it's necessary to their duty to protect the public, and to ensure their safety as well. We are heartened that several of the towns being considered have indicated their support for the project."
DAS is the lead agency for the siting, design, and construction of the facility.
DAS Commissioner Melody Currey said, "For a project like this, communication and outreach are critical components of the siting process. Our community meetings have demonstrated that we need a more robust effort to get the facts out. Going forward, we will strive to work with local officials and the public to answer questions, resolve issues, and mitigate any concerns they have."
State Senator Tim Larson, Co-chair of the Public Safety and Security Committee, said, "No one ever doubted the necessity for a new training facility for the State Police-the current conditions are beyond repair. I'm grateful that the towns in consideration are receptive to this project and congratulate the Lieutenant Governor for her efforts to keep this project moving forward."
State Senator Tony Guglielmo, Ranking Member of the Public Safety and Security Committee, said, "I appreciate the Lieutenant Governor's and the state's willingness to balance public safety with the needs of the community. I know the State Police always strive to be good neighbors."
Office of Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman