City Manager Thomas Ambrosino has submitted a five-year multi-million dollar Capital Improvement Program for approval by the Chelsea City Council before the end of May.
The ambitious range of projects that will be included are renovation of science labs at the Williams School, roof repairs at the Mary C. Burke, vehicle replacement, building renovations, park and open space improvements and the list just goes on.
In Fiscal Year ‘19 alone, there will be $11,560,855 spent on 49 projects.
Longtime Chelsea residents can remember back to before there was a City Manager when roofs leaked, police cars would not run and many public buildings and parks were in a constant state of disrepair.
In reviewing some of the proposals, the cost associated seems high, but what does not cost more than one remembers.
Suffice it to say that nothing lasts forever, and it is cheaper and prudent to fix a problem and update a system before it goes from bad to worse.
From a practical standpoint, spending money on items like parks, streets and sidewalks only enhances the quality of life for residents. What motorist likes to drive their car down a street riddled with potholes?
On the financial side, Ambrosino proposes taking $4.4 million from the free cash account and obtaining state and federal grants of more than $7 million to pay for these projects.
While, we agree with the sentiment of some of the Council to use caution in spending, we urge the councillors to vote for the Capital Improvement Program as many of the items that are listed really need to be addressed much sooner than a little later.