Branford, CT – Citing benefits to taxpayers, consumers and the community, Jamie Cosgrove announced today that he favors the plan to put Costco at an Exit 56 location and will work to assure an appropriate plan for siting the facility. “The burden of financing town services has been unfairly shifted to homeowners,” Cosgrove said. “If we are going to meet the growing needs of our community, we must have sensible commercial development that generates jobs and tax revenues for the Town.”
“Costco will be more convenient for consumers who live in Branford, it will bring some prospect of relief for overburdened homeowners with rising tax bills and it will give us a solid financial basis to meet the obvious needs of our Town,” Cosgrove commented. “Everyone acknowledges we have needs at the Senior Center, Walsh Intermediate School, and in Public Works to name a few. These important needs---and the debt service on the new Fire Station--- are going to require a strong commercial tax base in the future. ” Cosgrove noted that data previously presented to the Town includes estimated annual tax revenues of up to $475,000.
On the question of siting the proposal, Cosgrove emphasized that his administration will be business-friendly and committed to assuring the appropriateness of any final site plan. “It’s time to rise above the acrimony of the last several years and focus our energy in a positive way on building an appropriate plan for developing the area at Exit 56. If that is where Costco wants to site the facility, then we ought to work with them to assure an appropriate development of that site, not throw up roadblocks behind closed doors.”
Cosgrove stated that once elected he would also bring back the original plan for the re-development of the area around Exit 53. “Now that the construction in the area of Exit 53 is winding down,” Cosgrove said, “we need to move forward with re-developing that area in ways that will create new commercial tax revenues.”
The increasing shift of the local tax burden to homeowners is particularly problematic for Branford. “We all know that Branford is considered “wealthy” by the State, so we can’t expect any help from Hartford,” Cosgrove pointed out. “We have a responsibility to create a sound tax base that is fair to homeowners and sufficient to meet the needs of our community and I am committed to making that happen,” Cosgrove said.