Town establishes new tourism committee
NEW CANAAN — A new committee could help bring more attention to the town’s attractions and downtown businesses in the new year.
The Board of Selectmen unanimously approved the start of a Tourism and Economic Development Committee at its Monday meeting.
“I realized tourism should be a part of our effort,” First Selectman Kevin Moynihan said. “With the Glass House and Grace Farms and our restaurants, we have reasons to encourage tourists to our towns.”
The mission of the committee will be to study and analyze New Canaan’s local economy and commercial and tourism businesses. They will also advise and make recommendations to town officials on ways to promote and develop the local economy.
Originally, the new town group was planned to include 11 members, but the selectmen decided on 15 to give more input. The meetings in 2019 will be facilitated by a consulting arrangement with the National Executive Service Corps, Moynihan said.
“All of the consultants are volunteers and we’re going to use the same consultant that worked with the Glass House because she’s up to speed on New Canaan,” he said.
The town will pay the organization $6,000 for its first year of work with the committee, which will help the group narrow its focus according to Moynihan.
Members will be given three-year terms without term limits and meet monthly.
Some of the attractions in town could benefit from fresh eyes and new approaches, Moynihan said, adding, “I would also like to focus on how we can use Waveny Park more.”
Tucker Murphy, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce, said she was excited about the potential of the new committee, adding the chamber previously acted as the de facto economic development leader in town.
“We’re kind of limited in our resources,” Murphy said. “We’re thrilled about this.”
She said many of the town’s attractions like Grace Farms weren’t common and should be used as leverage to attract tourism.
“I just think it’s a good time for this,” Murphy said.
Those interested in being part of the tourism committee should contact the first selectman’s office or email Moynihan at email@example.com.