An increase in applications and activity before a town planning and zoning board is usually a good sign in this economic climate. In Windsor Locks, it comes at a time when the board seeks to fill several vacancies and town staff is in a period of transition. Longtime board member and former vice chairman Vincent Zimnoch was elected as chairman last December.
That transition took place seamlessly, occurring at the same time as an increase in applications by smaller businesses were filed and filled the board's agendas. The last month however has seen a change in the makeup of town staff.
The board's recording secretary, responsible for providing years of meticulous minutes and maintaining the records of the applications before the board, resigned to assume a new position with the town. The duties of town's planning consultant were reassigned to building office staff.
The board could soon find itself scrambling to reach a quorum as several alternate positions are unfilled and a regular member resigned this week. All of the board's members are volunteers and often face a choice of tending to their own business and personal responsibilities while pitching in to help deal with the board's increased workload.
There are new challenges on the horizon. The town is seeking to move the existing Amtrack platform back to the center of town; it is also considering changes to the regulations dealing with its Main Street corridor, hoping to take advantage of the opportunities presented by transit-oriented development. All registered voters are encouraged to apply for the current openings on the board.