Draft Capital Improvement Plan Out for Review

The Derry Planning Board has received the first draft of the town’s Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) for FY 2017 through 2022.

Chief Financial Officer Susan Hickey presented the plan to the board at its Feb. 17 meeting.

The document includes planning for capital expenses for Police, Fire, Public Works, Community Development, the Executive and Finance departments and the town’s two libraries. Appropriations range from $3,153,607 for FY 17 to $2,304,001 in FY 2022, but are fairly consistent across the years, Hickey said.

The draft document also includes capital planning for Water, Wastewater and the Cable Department, Hickey said, but added that those expenses are offset by revenues. With the three income-generating departments included, the CIP totals range from $3,738,608 in FY 2017 to $2,447,001 in FY 2022.

“We tried to plan evenly, so there are not ‘spikes,’” Hickey told the board.

Planning Vice-Chair John O’Connor noticed funds in the document for the systems audit of the Derry Public Library and asked if the town shouldn’t wait for a number, as a Request for Proposals (RFP) just went out for firms to do the review. But Hickey said the amount was a placeholder. “In a month or so we’ll have firm numbers,” she said.

O’Connor said he would also like to see something in the plan for “solar beacons” to enhance pedestrian safety.

Alternate member Marc Flattes questioned a line item for an ambulance under the Fire Department’s requests. “We just purchased a new ambulance,” he said. “Shouldn’t that one be null and void?”

Hickey said the document was a draft, prepared in advance, and the ambulance would be deleted from the next version.

Member Jim MacEachern praised the CIP process, noting that “We roll in a new project as one rolls off. It keeps the taxpayer in mind, and keeps our bonded indebtedness fairly low.”

The plan will be presented to the Town Council in March and will be the subject of a public hearing in April.