Suffield Land Use and Development Procedures

General Overview:

Suffield's development process focuses on concept discussions up front followed by engineering review, so that most issues have been resolved by the time an application is filed. A project can receive approvals in as short as twelve weeks. Approval time may vary depending upon the scope and complexity of the project.

Staff Review:

The Town Planner organizes staff reviews on an as-needed basis at a time convenient to the applicant. It is strongly suggested that applicants contact the Town Planner early in plan development so that proper guidance can be given, saving the developer time and money in the long run. Generally, applicants will meet with the Town Planner and Town Engineer and go over project plans and requirements and receive professional feedback. When necessary, the Town Planner will call in the Public Works Director, Fire Marshal, Building Official, and/or the Director of Economic Development to discuss aspects of projects. There are no fees or forms associated with the staff review process.

Contact person:  Jim Taylor, 860-668-3848

The Economic Development Commission:

The Economic Development Commission (EDC) encourages appropriate development in the community. The EDC oversees the development of the Mach One Industrial Park, as well as the promotion of development on approximately 1400 acres near to or adjacent to Bradley Airport. The EDC also promotes small business development in the Town Center and other commercially zoned areas, as well as enhancement of the business environment through streetscape improvements and other projects. The EDC meets on the third Thursday of each month in the morning (except during the summer). Applicants often visit the EDC seeking its endorsement of a project that may be helpful in securing approvals from the other regulatory boards in the community. There are no fees or forms associated with EDC review of projects.

Contact person:  Patrick McMahon, Director of Economic and Community Development, 860-668-3849

Water and sewerage:

Prior to applying to the Conservation Commission, applicants must obtain public health approval to assure adequate water and sewerage at the site. In areas served by public sewer, applicants must request approval through application to the Water Pollution Control Authority. The WPCA will issue a Capacity Letter saying that the new project can tie into the system. Where a sewer line extension is required the process includes a planning application, technical review and execution of a Developers Agreement. The WPCA is responsible for the operation and maintenance of the Town-owned Sewer Treatment Plant and Collection System. Sewer service provided by the WPCA is similar to other public services such as gas, water or electricity. The cost of providing that service is borne by those who use the public sewer system. A seven-member body elected to four-year terms manages the WPCA. The WPCA staff is comprised of 10 people: a Superintendent, a Business Administrator, a Foreman and seven Operators. All employees, except the Business Administrator, hold professional wastewater certifications. The WPCA meets the second Tuesday of each month.

Contact person: Julie Nigro, Business Administrator, 860-668-3856

In areas not served by the WPCA, applicants must request approval through application to the North Central District Health Department.

Contact person:  Mr. William Blitz, Director of Health, 860-745-0383

Conservation Commission:

The Conservation Commission reviews all proposals for development to ensure that environmental impacts are minimized. Conservation Commission approval is required prior to applying to the Zoning and Planning Commission. The Conservation Commission meets on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month (except during the summer), and requires specific plans and specifications as part of their application.

Contact person: Gerry Turbet, Town Engineer, 860-668-3876

Zoning and Planning Commission:

The Zoning and Planning Commission (ZPC) reviews all site plans for commercial and industrial development, residential subdivisions, and other specialized uses. Approval by the Conservation Commission is required prior to application to the ZPC. All uses are by special permit requiring a public hearing. The Commission meets on the third Monday of each month.

Contact person: James Taylor, 860-668-3848

Zoning Board of Appeals:

On rare occasions, an application may also need to be made to the Zoning Board of Appeals when a zoning variance is required.

Contact person: James Taylor, Zoning Enforcement Officer, 860-668-3848

Building Permitting:

In order to apply for a Building Permit, one must fill out an application and, in addition, submit sketches, building drawings, and plans or other applicable documents for review. If all paperwork is in order, the majority of applications are processed without any delay. The Building Department staff is available to answer any questions you may have in order to speed up the permit process.

Contact person: Ted Flanders, Building Official, 860-668-3878