In response to the coronavirus and its impact on local communities, municipal leaders are making changes to their town hall schedules. Some remain open with signs on the door asking residents to consider their own health before entering; others are closed.
City Hall and its offices remain open, with a warning sign posted on the front entrance asking people to consider their health and the health of others before entering.
Residents can find information on all boards and commissions online at www.torringtonct.org/
The Sullivan Senior Center is closed, and all park and recreation activities are canceled or postponed. An Easter Egg Hunt, set for April 4, is “on hold.” Check the website for details.
The Torrington Historial Society also announced this week that it is closed. Residents can visit www.torringtonhistoricalsociety.org/ or call 860-482-8260.
Town Hall remains open with regular hours, including the town clerk, first selectman, assessor, finance office and tax collector. Residents are being asked to put off non-urgent business at Town Hall, or call ahead before they visit, at 860-567-7561.
Probate Judge Diane Blick said Friday that probate court operations in the Litchfield town hall and Canaan are continuing, but no passport applications will be processed until further notice. Anyone with questions can call the court in Litchfield at 860-567-8065 or in North Canaan at 860-824-7012.
The Litchfield Community Center, Oliver Wolcott Library, Litchfield Historical Society, public schools and the Forman School are closed. The recycling center is closed until March 21, and park and recreation programs are suspended.
“We are taking a proactive approach in dealing with this COVID-19 event and setting up our Community Emergency Response Volunteer Team in case we need to deploy,” said First Selectman Denise Raap in a statement. “I urge residents to check on their elderly neighbors via phone calls, social media messaging or email. In the meantime, we urge you to continue social distancing, to follow the guidance of CDC guidelines (www.cdc.gov) the CT State Dept of Public Health (portal.ct.gov/coronavirus) and will continue to work with Torrington Area Health.”
According to the town website, the Morris town hall, senior center and the library are closed until further notice.
New Hartford First Selectman Dan Jerram said this week that Town Hall and the public works department are open. The town garage is open to employees only. Residents are being asked to call Town Hall if they need help.
“If you have business that can be conducted by phone, email or snail mail ... we prefer that method for now,” Jerram said, adding that residents can still come to town hall if necessary, but to keep their visits brief.
Jerram reminded residents that the senior center is closed “to protect our ‘at risk’ senior population,” he said, adding that all exercise classes and social programs are canceled until further notice. The senior van will be used to transport resident seniors to scheduled medical appointments only. All other social trips are canceled.
Jerram also said that board or commission meetings that are not required to meet to conduct business required by state statute are canceled until further notice, including the Commission on Aging, Conservation Commission, Economic Development Commission, Historic District Commission, Recreation Commission and the Open Space Preservation Commission. Boards required to meet, including the Board of Assessment Appeals, Board of Education, Board of Finance, Inland Wetland Commission, Planning & Zoning Commission, Water Pollution Control Authority (WPCA) and Zoning Board of Appeals, will be assessed case-by-case.
For more information, visit www.newhartfordct.gov/ or call 860-379-3389.
“We are going to post signs at Town Hall requesting that anyone with symptoms or who has returned from travel outside the U.S. in the previous 14 days not come into the building and that everyone use Purell (which we will have available) before engaging with Town Hall staff,” wrote First Selectman Don Stein, in a town website message.
The Highway Garage is locked to the general public and people who need to meet with the Highway Department can call the main number at 860-379-1888.
The March 17 Board of Finance meeting is canceled and will be rescheduled “once we have a clear path to running a virtual meeting, while giving the public an opportunity to observe, and/or ask questions,” Stein said. “The Town Budget Hearing and the Town Meetings scheduled for April and May will likely be rescheduled and may also be done through a virtual meeting, but we are still investigating that methodology and to conduct these important meetings in accordance with state statutes. Other meetings will either be canceled or run as a virtual meeting.
The Barkhamsted Senior Center is closed for the next two weeks. A decision to remain closed or reopen the week of March 29 is pending.
The Highway Garage Community Room is closed for non-town functions until further notice.
Goshen First Selectman Robert Valentine sent a letter to residents Monday, outlining the town’s plans to keep the coronavirus in check.
Those who need building or land use permits or have business with the town clerk should visit the online application portal at www.goshenct.gov
“If you have documents that need to be filed, we ask that they be sent to the Town Clerk via FedEx UPS or USPS. For those needing hunting and fishing licenses please use the DEEP web site to purchase them,” Valentine said.
Board and commission meetings are moving to “electronic means” in the near future, Valentine said, either online or by a conference call, and all residents and members will be notified. “We’ll make sure that those interested in attending meetings are allowed to attend electronically and have the ability to see documents being discussed by boards and commissions,” he said.
The town hall is open for business, and residents are asked to limit their visits by going online or calling 860-491-2308 ext. 221 or administrative a ssistant Virginia Perry at ext. 228.
The Goshen Library is closed, and all recreation activities are canceled through March.
Town hall is closed to the public starting Tuesday, March 17. “Staff will be on hand to assist you in any way we can,” officials said. Call 860-868-7881 for assistance.
Land records can be found at https://www.searchiqs.com/ctwar/Login.aspx. Forms and applications are available on individual department pages. Anyone in need of assistance can call 860-868-7881.
Winsted is following a similar protocol, keeping town hall and the public works department open, and asking residents to limit their visits unless it’s urgent. Residents are asked to call ahead to make an appointment at 860-379-2713 or visit www.townofwinchester.org/
Board and commission meetings have been postponed. “All visitors are expected to maintain a “social distance” and may be asked to cleanse their hands. If you are sick, please stay home,” officials said in a statement online.
Recreation activities are canceled, and the senior center is also closed. The Senior Van is available to senior citizens for doctor appointments by calling 860-379-4252.
Refuse disposal center open
Regional Refuse Disposal District One, 31 New Hartford Road, Barkhamsted, which serves Barkhamsted, New Hartford and Winsted, is open and can be reached at 860-379-1972.
Residents are welcome to drop off trash and recyclables. Employees cannot help unload cars because they have been instructed to stay three feet away from others. “You will need to remove (trash) from your vehicle yourself and dispose of it properly. This includes televisions, air conditioners, appliances, garbage, etc.,” according to a statement.
RRDD1 also asked residents who have tested positive for coronavirus to put used paper products (tissues, paper towels) in a plastic bag and to place it in the facility’s trash compactor.