Photo: M.S. Wirtenberg
On October 17, the Board of Selectmen appointed Town Engineer John Conte to head Weston's Department of Public Works, examined a preview of a new road maintenance management system, and formed a temporary committee to advise on public works matters.
Mr. Conte has been Town Engineer for 29 years. Before taking the position in Weston, he owned and operated an engineering consulting firm and had worked at several civil and transportation engineering companies. (Photo: John Conte, by M.S. Wirtenberg.)
First Selectman Chris Spaulding showed his colleagues a preliminary view of a just-completed analysis by engineering consultants Beta Group, which has scanned every section of all Weston public roads and created a database system to help set priorities and estimate costs for future maintenance. Going forward, roads will continue to be analyzed and the database updated on a regular schedule.
Implementation of the new system is timely. With this year's road paving about to be complete, Town officials are only weeks away from planning next year's work and setting budgets.
From the audience, Finance Board member Jeffrey Farr, an engineer, commented that the system will be "a good tool to go forward with annual budgeting." Dr. Spaulding noted that if a decision were taken to issue bonds to accelerate road improvements, the system would "save time and money" to meet bond justification requirements.
The Selectmen also decided to form a temporary Public Works advisory committee, consisting of up to five volunteers. Those who have experience in engineering, construction, or related fields and are interested in serving can contact the Selectmen's administrative assistant, Randi Derene, at (203) 222-2656.
According to Dr. Spaulding, the committee will be asked to advise on statewide and regional public works trends, improving the safety and well-being of public works employees, and on implementation of the technical assessment system for continuous improvement of Weston roads.