Mansfield-Area Lawmakers Celebrate Passage of Bond Package, Validating Solar Panel Funds Previously Approved Through Last Year's Referendum

March 11, 2020

The bond package validates the results of last November's school construction referendum held in Ashford, Mansfield and Willington, which received resounding approval at the ballot box in calling for the installation of new solar panels on the roof of E. O. Smith High School in Storrs.

Hartford, Conn. — State Representatives Gregg Haddad (D-Mansfield), Pat Wilson Pheanious (D-Ashford, Willington, Tolland) and Brian Smith (D-Colchester, Lebanon, Mansfield, Windham) and State Senator Mae Flexer (D-Killingly) applaud the inclusion of a section in today's bond package, HB 5518, which passed earlier today. The package validates the results of last November's school construction referendum held in Ashford, Mansfield and Willington, which received resounding approval at the ballot box in calling for the installation of new solar panels on the roof of E. O. Smith High School in Storrs. The results of the referendum were initially invalidated due to a clerical error.

"Last year, our community made our voices heard when voting to approve funds for the construction of E. O. Smith's new roof and solar panels, and I'm glad we were able to correct the problem and allow these clean, sustainable solar panels to be installed on our high school.," said Rep. Haddad.

“I’m thrilled that the people of Mansfield spoke strongly in support of the roof construction project at E.O. Smith High School,” said Sen. Flexer. “This project will set the standard for energy efficient school construction in Connecticut, and I’m so pleased that we were able, as a delegation, to make a simple change in the law to ensure that this critical project moves forward.”

“I’m glad we were able to work together with the appropriate legislative committees and the Governor’s Office to reach this resolution," said Rep. Wilson Pheanious. "Now Region 19 students and taxpayers will benefit from the energy and money saving solar panels that will be installed on the new roof. This project is the culmination of the hard work stakeholders in each of the three towns did to ensure voters passed this referendum in the first place. I would also like to thank House Chair of the Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee State Rep. Jason Rojas for his help to facilitate this positive outcome.”

"I am pleased the legislature voted to validate the referendum where Regional School District 19 voters overwhelmingly approved the roof construction project," said Rep. Smith. "This legislation will save District 19 taxpayer dollars, so it does not have to conduct another referendum."