January 28, 2015

Bond Commission eyes $250M in GO borrowing

The state's Bond Commission will decide Friday whether to approve $250.1 million in general obligations bonds, much of it for renovations to state facilities and schools, housing, and assistance to Connecticut companies.

The largest request is $110 million from the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection for the Clean Water Fund. DEEP would use the funds to provide loans and grants to municipalities to help pay for planning, design and construction of wastewater projects.

Much of the total borrowing would go toward construction, renovations and upgrades to schools and state facilities.

Naugatuck Valley Community College in Danielson is in line for $39 million to construct a nursing building, while state office buildings would receive $20.6 million.

That would include a $10 million renovation to 450 Columbus Boulevard in Hartford, aka Connecticut River Plaza. The state bought the property in 2013 and is planning to move as many as 2,300 workers there by early next year.

Another $10 million would go to the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection to increase energy efficiency in state buildings, while $600,000 would pay for security upgrades at state buildings.

Hammonasset Beach State Park in Madison would receive just under $10 million to build a nature center, concession facility and bathrooms.

The commission will also vote on $20 million in borrowing for 155 supportive housing units in Bridgeport, Hartford, Hamden and other communities.

Businesses — mainly those in Fairfield County — also stand to gain from the commission's meeting this week.

Danbury's Fuel Cell Energy has asked for $10 million to help expand its operations in Torrington and Danbury, which it says would create 325 jobs within five years.

Another $9 million could go to Stamford's Conair Corp. to help set up a fuel cell and renovate its facility, creating up to 250 jobs.

The commission could also vote to approve $2 million to help Jarden Corp. prepare its Norwalk facility for a relocation of its executive staff from New York. The company says it can create 75 jobs there in four years.

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