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Three public hearings scheduled on town hall plan
Litchfield.bz (10-03-18)


The process of determining whether a proposal to convert the former Litchfield County courthouse into a town hall should be brought to the voters is beginning to shape up.
 
Public hearings on the $7.6 million plan that has been recommended to the Board of Selectmen by the town hall review committee will be held Oct. 17 and 23 and Nov. 1 at locations and times to be determined.
 
The plan will be presented by the town hall review committee, which believes the $7.6 million estimate is enough money to convert the building into a town hall that would meet the town’s needs well into the future.
 
After the hearings are completed, selectmen will consider public input and determine if the proposal should be considered in a referendum in December. The board is expected to make its decision on Nov. 6.
 
The old courthouse is owned by the Greater Litchfield Preservation Trust, which wants to donate the building to the town for use as a town hall. GLPT President Perley Grimes, speaking at Tuesday’s selectmen’s meeting, said the trust believes the conversion project could be completed for $6.4 million.
 
Grimes presented an analysis to the selectmen showing savings of $1.2 million.
 
The only selectman to comment extensively on the proposal was Anne C. Dranginis, who said she is opposed to it because the building is too small to hold all town offices and that the lower level is inappropriate for the offices of the Litchfield Hills Probate District.