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Groton Long Point Receives No Town Money For Irene Cleanup

Subdivision had wanted $20,800 not covered by FEMA.

John Tuohy was so angry when he left the Town Council meeting Tuesday night he could hardly speak.

The president of the Groton Long Point Association had come to the meeting with his director of public works to ask for $20,800 that was not covered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to fix a retaining wall and clear debris after Tropical Storm Irene.

He expected the town to cover the difference that FEMA did not pay.

But Town Councilors felt otherwise.

Mayor Heather Bond Somers said Groton Long Point should have worked with the town Department of Public Works. But she said they did not wait, so she has no way of knowing whether what they paid was reasonable.

”If you want to use your own person and subcontract it out, then you should pay for it,” she said. “If not, let the town clear up the debris down there.” 

Councilor Bruce Flax said he’d support paying the bill once, but not again.

“It seems like you treat yourself like an island,” he said. “… When in reality, you’re part of a big town and working together you probably could get it (done) cheaper.”

Councilors voted down three separate amounts toward all or some of the difference the subdivision wanted. The council is expected to schedule a meeting in the future to talk about policy for working with Groton Long Point during future storms.

Rich Moravsik, director of public works for Groton Long Point said after the meeting, "It would be very simple for the town to draft a letter saying, 'This is what we can offer, here's when we can offer it, here are our rates.' But the town has never done that," he said.

Tuohy said the town is obligated under charter to maintain and clear roads in Groton Long Point. He added that subdivision is unique in that homes are close to the water and can’t wait as they are vulnerable to flooding.

During Sandy, Tuohy said public works dumped gravel on the causeway that leads to the subdivision.

Then Moravsik said he received a letter telling him to repair the causeway. He had to move in boulders to get the job done.

“Then they sent me a bill for the gravel,” Tuohy said. “How is that helping us?”

Oh Yeah...... January 10, 2013 at 10:13 PM
All the waterfront property up there is either privately owned or belongs to the Groton Long Point Association and is tax exempt. Assuming all the sea walls are on the water, hence, 'sea walls', why is it our problem? Check it out on the Town of Groton websites interactive mapping function.
GlpGeorge January 11, 2013 at 02:14 PM
Dave, Rich...snobby? Puhlease! C'mon over for a beer and I will gladly sell you my house for what the Town says its worth (hint: it'an overinflated appraisal)I'll even throw in a couple of thirty packs. Rich....snobby...you're too funny! Had I known of the scorn I would get from the Town and it's residents....I would have bought directly across the street from me and paid 3500 a year less in taxes and been treated more fairly.
Jay D January 11, 2013 at 10:01 PM
Were my tax dollars used to fix private property sea walls and private beaches?
KK January 12, 2013 at 12:49 AM
I believe it was brought up in the budget deliberations that the Town taking over your police department wouldn't impact the overall budget. If i recall that is why GLP decided to fund it themselves. Please correct me if I am incorrect. If the town needs to take of your roads why do you have your own Public Works? Once again picking and choosing. If you feel you are part of the Town why don't you fully join it? Going back to storm clean up from what i have read GLP did not contact the town and went forward with their own repairs therefore becoming responsible for the expense. On another note, with storms like Irene and Sandy projected at becoming more frequent, you won't have to worry about your property because it will become part of the beach and my property away from the beach will be high and dry. Look to parts of the coastline to the south of us.
Oh Yeah...... January 12, 2013 at 11:38 AM
If I remember correctly, GLP had a private tree company on standby before and during Irene so they could get damage taken care of immediately afterwards. Correct me if this is not true please. Everyone else in town had to wait their turn for public works to get to their area. If a tree falls in the road in front of my house during a storm and I decide to contract a private company to clear it rather than wait for the town crew to get to it, should I expect the taxpayers to reimburse me?

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