Smart Growth for Vernon, CT
Vernon officials court prospective developers, business owners

By Max Bakke
Journal Inquirer
Published: Thursday, May 14, 2009 11:44 AM EDT

VERNON — With a streamlined permitting process and tracts of developable land, the town is well positioned to reap the benefits of an economic turnaround, town leaders said Wednesday.

Mayor Jason L. McCoy, speaking to a room of commercial brokers, landowners, and developers at Town Hall — courted by the opportunity to do business in town and a modest breakfast spread — said the town is starved for economic growth.

“This is the time for you to come to Vernon and invest in our community,” he said. “People in our community are interested in people developing land in town, bringing business, and bringing jobs to grow our tax base.”

The morning event, arranged by the town's Economic Development Commission, aimed to sell Vernon to prospective business owners, by highlighting its local services, attractive location, and hungry local leaders, Assistant Planner Marina Rodriguez said.

Planning and building officials encouraged developers to start the permit process early and simultaneously navigate town red tape more effectively and quickly.

“There's definitely some great opportunities in Vernon,” commission Chairman Jeffrey Cohen said, pointing to vacant mills in downtown Rockville and undeveloped land elsewhere in town that's perfect for creative builders. “And with Rein's Deli in town, we are the stopping place.”

Officials then shuttled guests around town, showcasing available parcels, reminding them that a new “business friendly” local government is there to make local economic growth as easy as possible.

“Our commissions are friendly and reasonable, and willing to help as needed,” McCoy said.

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