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Process Not Over Yet as 'Work to Do' Before Police Station Vote

Town officials want to stress to residents that the voting process for the proposed police station is not over yet.

Will a new police station be approved this May? (File Photo)
Will a new police station be approved this May? (File Photo)

On Monday, the single ballot question regarding to the proposed Sudbury Police Department facility passed. But the process is far from over.

Sudbury Facilities Director Jim Kelly said that over the upcoming weeks, town officials will continue finalizing details of the presentation that will be given to Town Meeting members on May 5, when the final vote on the issue will take place.

“We still have a lot of work to do, and we still need the town’s approval,” said Kelly. “This was not a final vote. It was a big step in the right direction, because it’s more representative of what the town wants I believe. Both parts of the vote are important parts of the process in the system that provides checks and balances.”

During Town Meeting, representatives will have the opportunity to review details of the plans, along with financial specifics.

Kelly said officials expect the total cost to be around $7.8 million, though that includes about $627,000 that has already been approved. So taxpayers will likely be asked to pay around $7.1 million if they support the project.

What Kelly said will also be beneficial of the Town Meeting vote is that residents will have the opportunity to ask questions and receive answers on the spot from town officials.

Because the project requires money borrowing, in order to move forward it must receive a two-thirds majority vote at Town Meeting. Because of that, Kelly wants to stress to residents that while they did vote at the ballot this week, the process is not over yet.

“One of our goals all along was to be sure people understood the project, the design, the construction, the cost, and the project as a whole,” said Kelly. “Whether you vote yes or no depends on the information you have. We hope we gave them the info they have to make the right decision.”

Jamon April 02, 2014 at 12:34 PM
Why is a new police station necessary? There are only 5 people there at any one time, yet they are asking $7.9 MILLION for a new palace triple the size at 14,000+ square feet! For 5 people at any one time - seriously? This is only slightly less than the $8.3 million palace they wanted before. All existing problems can be fixed for less than $1,000,000, but no one sincerely looked at this option (the fix was in - only a cursory analysis was discussed). The “experts” want to force us into unnecessary palaces, hoping for voter apathy that will waste millions of taxpayer dollars. The current building can be renovated and expanded because the town controls variances (just like they are working out permit issues on the new building). In addition, as later discussed, this is about town insiders and selectmen backing each other's favorite pet projects and nest-feathering. “You vote for mine, I’ll vote for yours.” The only loser here is the taxpayer. The totally unnecessary new building is still far too large. Police officials in other towns can’t believe the massive size and cost of this palace for so few people working there and the small scope of police work in the “crime capital” of Sudbury. Few reasons for a new station are valid. Crowded? For 5 people at any one time - seriously? They moved fire dispatch to the “crowded” police station instead of the spacious fire dept HQ. Lockup? There are only a handful of minor offenses annually in the crime capital of Sudbury. Lockup exists in towns only a few miles away and this service is available at a tiny fraction of the cost. Town police stations are only a few miles apart. Lecture hall? Meeting space is easy to find in town, and a police meeting that needs large space is rare. Also, why is the sale of the current station not in the projections to diminish the new station cost? A prime Route 20 property sells for seven figures. If the building is so small and such an abomination, why would the town keep it?
Jamon April 02, 2014 at 12:34 PM
Taxpayers were promised lower taxes as LS debt service declined. Instead, schools, police, selectmen, etc. are desperately trying to fill the void by piling on with totally unnecessary pet projects. This is just the first of an upcoming avalanche of unnecessary pet projects in the “You vote for mine, I’ll vote for yours” program now firmly established in town, guaranteeing Sudbury’s place at or near the top of highest taxed towns in the state. Let's count up just a fraction of upcoming pet projects: New police station $7.9 Million, Town Hall Renovation $9 Million, Community Center $6 Million, Rt 20 Sewer $10 million. Home prices are stagnant here because everyone knows Sudbury taxes are out of control. Buyers get the same environment and schools in other towns for 30% less in taxes. The fix will be in. They will simply force passage of the most expensive, least value option because of taxpayer apathy. Some projects must be carefully analyzed while seeking aid from other sources to assist in payment: LS roof (who allows a contract for commercial roof construction that lasts only a few years?), other roofs, Sherman’s bridge, Pension and Retiree Health Care shortfall. Insiders control town meeting. Everyone knows town meeting is a hangout for entrenched interests to rubber-stamp each other’s projects, guaranteeing approval for insider wish lists. The taxpayers lose every time. Only the taxpayers at town meeting and elections can keep millions from being wasted.
Spanky Simian April 02, 2014 at 11:04 PM
You know I think Sudbury city workers need a new facility. We should build them quarters that is more in line with Sudbury expectations. I think a humble 15000 square foot complex would work well for them. You know nothing ostentatious maybe does not have to be 538.00 a square foot like the police station, but certainly 418.00 per square foot like what it costs to build a sky scraper in NY City per square foot. Just a thought...
Richard Lovell April 09, 2014 at 02:02 PM
With all the crime in Sudbury, 17 murders just last week and prostitutes plying their services outside Sudbury Farm, we need to triple the size of the police station and have own own SWAT team for those all too common hostage situations on Union Ave.

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