News from Town Hall
As your First Selectman, my number one goal is to stop the spread of this deadly virus, by insisting that everyone stay home and stay safe. I would remind everyone to only go out for essential items, minimize travel, hopefully for only food and medicine. This is not a time to “catch up” with friends we have not seen in a while, socialize while out on daily walks, or begin new projects involving hiring people to come into our homes. 
 
The total number of laboratory confirmed COVID-19 cases in Woodbridge is 67 and the total number of those that have passed away is 10. My heart goes out to all families who have been touched by this illness and those who have lost loved ones. This is indeed a stark reminder of how dreadful this horrible disease is. 
 
Town Buildings remain closed to the public and have been since mid-March. Last week I closed the Town playgrounds, our athletic fields and tennis courts. The Dog Park Cooperative chose to voluntarily close the dog park, to further minimize resident interaction.

On Monday we will conduct the Preliminary Budget Hearing at 7:30 pm. This year's budget process will be different this year in order to comply with Executive Order #7I and Executive Order #7B. You can participate via this link . It will also be broadcast on Channel 79 and the WGATV YouTube channel.

Residents and taxpayers are encouraged to participate. The public may submit email questions and comments on the preliminary budget to the Town at  kcrosby@woodbridgect.org  by 4 pm on Monday. 

Additionally, the adoption of the July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2021 Budget will be determined by a vote of the Board of Finance in lieu of convening the Annual Town Meeting.
 
This week I requested that meetings of boards and commissions during this period should be held  only  if an issue or issues require immediate attention. This will give the public the ability to comment and participate in person which is always preferable to holding a remote meeting.

Please join me in thanking all Woodbridge employees, and especially our town residents for being flexible and understanding during these unprecedented times. We are working so hard to keep each other safe, and informed, and to provide a safe workplace for our staff so they can continue to serve our residents. 
I am so very proud of all our townspeople. The caring and hard work everyone has shown to keep us safe is unprecedented. I remain hopeful that we will get through this - We are staying apart now so we can come together later!


Help Make Masks!

The CDC is now recommending that everyone wear a mask while out in public (in addition to practicing social distancing). You can help by making masks and donating them to The Woodbridge Center for distribution to Woodbridge residents. Or, you can help by donating fabric for the making of masks.

Once masks are ready for distribution we will send out an update.

Transfer Station is Open

The Transfer Station is open for regular business hours. If you need to use the transfer station, please remember to wear a mask while in public and be sure to thank the attendant!
For Medical Professionals

Heating and Air Conditioning Service company ENCON is donating high quality air filters to be used in the Heating/AC system in the homes of medical professionals Connecticut. Members of the medical community can click on this web link, give us their home address, air filter size, and ENCON will drop a new high quality air filter on their door step, at no cost. These filters are designed to help protect their families by reducing the spread of potential contaminants inside their homes.


Sign up for Emergency Alerts

To sign up for emergency alerts, or change the way you receive them, visit CTAlert.gov

Two Community Projects

Woodbridge residents are encouraged to participate in two community projects to make people feel connected while being forced to be apart.

Beecher Road School Librarian Larissa Crocco and art teacher Ashley Wagner are asking students and residents to participate in a community building art project: create and display a heart in windows, mailboxes, doors and/or yards so that others could notice the hearts as they take walks or drive through town.

Hearts can be constructed from whatever materials people have at home.

“At a time when we are forced to keep our distance, it is a way for us to come together as a town,” says Crocco.

Several residents suggested to First Selectman Beth Heller that the Town encourage everyone to ring a bell each night from 8 to 8:02 pm. This is “an old English tradition to show solidarity and support for each other,” writes resident Kay Robinson. ”It is a way of connecting all of us in this time of isolation.”

“These residents and their suggestions demonstrate the true spirit of our town -- community, creativity and perseverance,” said Heller. “Please participate in both projects to show your neighbors that they are not alone.”
Lock Your Cars!
The Woodbridge Police Department is reporting an uptick in stolen unlocked cars and thefts from unlocked cars. Please double check to make sure your car is locked.
Info for Renters/Residential Landlords
According to Executive Order 7X :
  • All landlords are prohibited from issuing a notice to quit or beginning eviction proceedings before July 1, 2020, except for serious nuisance, such as physically harming another tenant or the landlord.
  • For rent due in April 2020, landlords must grant tenants an automatic, 60-day grace period for payment, instead of the existing 9-day grace period.
  • For rent due in May 2020, landlords must grant a 60-day grace period for payment upon the request of tenants. Under this provision, a tenant must to notify the landlord that they have lost a job, lost hours, or otherwise lost revenue or faced significant increased expenses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • If a tenant has a paid security deposit of more than one month’s rent, the tenant can apply all or part of that excess to April, May, or June rent. Under this provision, the tenant must notify the landlord that they have lost a job, lost hours, or otherwise lost revenue or faced significant increased expenses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.


As of this writing there is no information about commercial renters/landlords.
Do You Need Help?
Finances

Governor Lamont announced that many banks are offering 90 day mortgage relief. Check to see if your bank is one of them.

Food
Contact the Town's Food and Fuel Fund for food assistance at 203-389-3430.

You can also contact Our Lady of the Assumption Church at 203-387-7119 to arrange for food assistance . It is not necessary to be a church member to take advantage of this service to the community.

Pets
The Woodbridge District Animal Control has dog and cat food for anyone in need. Call 203-389-5991 with at least a one-day notice to arrange a curbside pick-up.

Business
Visit the State Department of Economic and Community Development website for many business programs designed to help during the pandemic.

Learn about the Families First Coronavirus Response Act which provides refundable tax credits to businesses with less than 500 employees to cover the cost of providing paid leave for COVID 19 related reasons.

Not sure which program is best for your business?   The Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) has created a COVID-19 Business Emergency Response Unit dedicated to assisting businesses navigate resources and develop new resources. A dedicated phone line is available at 860-500-2333 to provide assistance to Connecticut's small businesses for this purpose.



Entertain Yourself
Take a v irtual visit to the Library to see the Library's new website and all the things you can do with a Library card. All fines accrued while the Library is closed will be waived through June 1.

The Recreation Department is offering online classes. New classes are added frequently so check back often.

Visit the Town's online calenda r for a listing of upcoming virtual events. Organizations may submit Woodbridge-based events open to the public by visiting the calendar and clicking on "submit an event" near the top of the page. Please include an email address so we can contact you if there are questions.

Take a Hike! There are more than 35 miles of trail in town. Explore them all! In addition to the maps on the Town website you may also hike at the former Country Club of Woodbridge and Massaro Community Farm has a trail.
How You Can Help

Donate Money
-The United Way and the Community Foundation of Greater New Haven have created a Greater New Haven COVID 19 fund taking donations. The United Way is also organizing volunteers, donations and other resources.

The Connecticut COVID-19 Charity Connection (4-CT) was launched as a non-profit that unites donors with state-wide programs that will help make an immediate impact.

The Griffin Hospital COVID 19 Relief fund will help the hospital react to the pandemic.

Yale New Haven Hospital has a COVID-19 Support Fund that will provide critical support to the hospital during the pandemic.

Woodbridge Rotary has established a COVID-19 Relief Fund. Donate here. To date the Rotary has given $500 to the Woodbridge Human Services (THANK YOU!!!), $500 to the Bethany Human Services, $500 to the JCC for their Mask program, and $500 to JFS. Donate here.

Jewish Federation of Greater New Haven has established a COVID-19 Response / Maimonides Fund to meet urgent COVID-19 related needs. Donate here.

Donate Blood
-The Red Cross is experiencing a shortage of blood donations after thousands of blood drives were canceled around the country to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. A number of appointment-only blood drives are being organized throughout Connecticut. To make an appointment in your area, visit   www.redcrossblood.org

Donate Personal Protective Equipment
Griffin Hospital is accepting donations of PPE. Details here.

Yale New Haven Hospital is accepting donations of PPE. Details here.

Donate Food
The Woodbridge Food and Fuel Fund is accepting donations. Details here.

District Animal Control is accepting pet food donations. Call 203-389-5991 to coordinate drop-off.

Volunteer
The Governor is urging residents to volunteer to help respond to the COVID-19 crisis. While the state already began a campaign seeking out volunteers who have health care experience, the state is also seeking volunteers from the general public who are needed for other services at many different types of providers, such as food banks, deliveries to the elderly, shelters, and more. Sign up here .

How to Shop Local During the Pandemic

The Town is maintaining a list of businesses open during the pandemic. Some have altered hours, others are offering delivery, curbside pick-up or virtual service. Love your local and see the list here!

If you'd like to add your business to the list contact Betsy Yagla.
Visit the Town website: woodbridgect.org

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