The Borough of Guilford, incorporated in 1815, was consolidated with the Town of Guilford by a special act of the General Assembly in 1939. At that time the borough as an entity ceased to exist. The current Charter of the Town of Guilford was revised and reviewed by the voters in November 2001. In addition to minor corrections and updates, the major change approved by the voters was to increase the size of the Board of Selectmen from three members to a board of five members. This change was reflected in the Municipal Election of 2003. Currently, the town has a selectman and town meeting form of government that provides a lively exchange of ideas and a voice for every viewpoint.
Forms of Government
The Board of Selectmen/Board of Finance/Town Meeting form of government is the most common form of local government in Connecticut.
Town Meeting is the legislative body of the town. To vote at a town meeting, one must be either: 1) a registered voter in the town, or 2) a citizen of the age of 18 or more who, jointly or severally, is liable to the town for taxes assessed against them on an assessment of no less than $1,000 on the last completed Grand List. This includes motor vehicle as well as real and personal property. The Annual Town Meeting takes place on the second Monday in May. The Annual Budget Meeting/Referendum takes place in April. In addition, special town meetings can be called by the Board of Selectmen when they deem it necessary or upon application of at least 50 people qualified to vote in a town meeting.
Board of Selectmen
The Board of Selectmen consists of a full-time salaried first selectman and four part-time selectmen. The board meets twice a month, with three members constituting a quorum. Reviewing the town’s present and future needs lies with this Board.
Selectmen’s Office (203) 453-8015
Boards and Commissions
The Town of Guilford also utilizes appointed boards, commissions, councils, committees
Please visit Guilford’s web site to learn more about Town Government at www.ci.guilford.ct.us
The Assessors office locates, identifies, and values all taxable property in the town. The Assessor is responsible for maintaining all appraised values for property tax purposes at current market levels as of each January 1. Annual preparation of the tax rolls and tax rate setting are primary services. To this end, deed, building permit and field review information is collected. Sales, property characteristic, ownership, legal description and mapping files are created for valuation development and public information purposes. The Assessor’s Office also administers statutory agricultural, charitable and property tax exemption programs as well as property tax and motor vehicle abatement services.
Assessor’s Office (203) 453-8010
Building and Engineering
Town Hall South, 50 Boston Street
Building Official The building official must be certified by the state as a building official. The building official administers the town's building inspection program adhering to and enforcing all code requirements of the State of Connecticut relating to building construction. Additional responsibilities include administering and enforcing all related state codes for the safety, health and welfare of persons and properties in town, supervising departmental policies and procedures, and providing technical assistance to town officials.
Town Engineer The engineer plans, directs and coordinates engineering contracts and construction projects, including bridges, sanitary and marine development. This official provides technical consultation to town boards and commissions and serves as town liaison with various state agencies.
Building and Engineering Office (203) 453-8029
The Economic Development Director works in conjunction with the Economic Development Commission which is charged to conduct research into the economic conditions and trends in the Town and to make recommendations to appropriate Town officials and agencies regarding action to improve the Town's economic condition and development. They may advertise, prepare, print and distribute books, maps, charts and pamphlets which will further its official purposes.
Economic Development Office (203) 453-8071
The finance director is a full-time, salaried official who directs, controls and coordinates all the financial activities of the town government. The town treasurer is elected to a 4-year term and must be bonded. This part-time position is salaried and derives its authority from state statute and from the town charter. This official signs town checks, invests town money and arranges for bond issues and borrowing.
Finance Department Office (203) 453-8026
Town Hall South, 50 Boston Street
The Director of Health is appointed to a four-year term by the Board of Selectmen and confirmed by the Commission of the State Department of Health Services. The director, serving on a full-time basis, salaried, is responsible for enforcement of the state public health code and pertinent local ordinances. In the summer all recreational bathing beach areas are tested every two weeks. Additional responsibilities include investigations of radon, rabies, electromagnetic field concerns and food-borne diseases.
Water Pollution Control Authority Throughout the town, sewage disposal is handled on-site by individual septic systems and community waste disposal systems. The Water Pollution Control Authority requires that the town and its residents monitor the proper design, use, and maintenance of individual, on-site sanitary systems. The town engineer reviews the design and inspects the installation of new, repaired and enlarged systems.
All of the septic systems in Guilford are required to be pumped every five years. Based on criteria including lot size and soil suitability, several areas of town must be inspected yearly. In areas where individual repairs would be impossible or inadequate, community disposal systems are developed.
Health Department Office (203) 453-8036
Parks and Recreation / Seniors
32 Church Street
The Parks and Recreation Department enhances the quality of life in Guilford by providing attractive, well maintained areas and facilities for active and passive leisure pursuits. We offer affordable structured activities for all age groups that are recreational, social, cultural, physical and creative; and we provide various social and health services. Our services benefit INDIVIDUALS with better health, fitness, self-esteem and creative expression; the COMMUNITY through connected families, community pride, support for youth, and a lifeline for the elderly; the ENVIRONMENT with open space, wildlife habitats, and oxygen producing green areas; the ECONOMY through enhanced land values, reduced healthcare costs, and reduced crime and vandalism. The benefits are endless. The Parks and Recreation Department endeavors to provide for the residents a caring and sincere atmosphere that values input from each individual. Parks and Recreation provides a full array of programs for children, adults, and seniors.
Department of Parks and Recreation/Seniors Office (203) 453-8068 www.guilfordparkrec.com
Planning and Zoning
The Town Planner reports to the First Selectman. He is responsible for managing the Planning and Zoning and Inland/Wetlands staff. The planning office provides assistance to the health, engineering and building departments, and is responsible for housing and economic development planning.
The Zoning Enforcement Officer/Inland Wetlands Enforcement Officer enforces the zoning regulations and is the administrator of the inland wetlands regulations and coastal site plan decisions on issues of zoning compliance. This position reports to the Town Planner and the Inland Wetlands Commission and also receives technical direction from the Town Engineer and Health Director.
Planning and Zoning Office (203) 453-8029
This department is responsible for planning, organizing and administering the Public Works operations and managing the Public Works staff and budget. Additional responsibilities include directing highway construction and maintenance procedures, land fill operations and other related duties.
Public Works Office (203) 453-8081
Although the town has no public rubbish pick-up service; it does maintain the Transfer Station, where garbage is received and compacted before being trucked to a plant in Hartford, CT. The transfer station is for the use of residents and private contractors who collect trash from Guilford homes.
The transfer station also includes a recycling center for paper, cans, glass, metal and cardboard.
Transfer Station Office (203) 453-8095
Clean wood may be deposited at the bulky waste site on Sullivan Drive, off of Goose
Bulky Waste Office (203) 453-8029
Registrar of Voters Two registrars of voters from each political party are elected to four-year terms at the regular state election. They are responsible for keeping the lists of qualified voters and enrolled party members. Annually the names and addresses of all registered voters are verified.
Registrar of Voters Office (203) 453-8028
Guilford’s Department of Social Services is dedicated to assisting and providing opportunities for all individuals and families in need of protection, economic support, and social work services to become self supporting and achieve a stable and satisfying family life. The department encourages individual and family self determination to achieve realistic goals and Social Services’ mission is accomplished through teamwork and professional practice with cooperation from helping agencies and our community. Social Services identifies needs, advocates for resources, and delivers services responsibly, compassionately and in a timely manner.
Social Services Office (203) 453-8009
The Town Clerk is an appointed and salaried official who, after a three-year probationary period, holds office during good behavior and may be removed only for cause. The town clerk is also required by state law to be bonded. The town clerk is responsible for maintaining the public records of the town as required by Connecticut State Statutes. Connecticut’s Freedom of Information laws require that most town records, with the exception of some births, be open for public inspection.
Justice of the Peace
The respective party caucuses choose justices of the peace. They derive their powers from state law and receive no salary. Their duties include performing wedding ceremonies. Guilford has 15 justices of the peace. A list of justices may be obtained by calling the Town Clerk’s office.
Town Clerk Office (203) 453-8001
Youth and Family Services
As a town based agency, Guilford Youth & Family Services strives to enhance the necessary skills, strategies, and opportunities for youth in establishing strong and positive relationships with family, school, peers, and the community. Guilford Youth & Family Services has provided supportive services to youth and their families since 1977. There is a professional staff dedicated to serving the needs of Guilford children, youth and families emphasizing the link between youth, family and community. Staff collaborates with parents/guardians, police, school, and community members to develop appropriate programs to best meet the needs of youth and their families. GY&FS receives its primary funding, support and endorsement from the Town of Guilford and the State Department of Education. Additional monies are obtained from local, regional and state grants.
Youth and Family Services Office (203) 453-8047
Town Boards and Commissions
|Guilford Agricultural Commission||Board of Assessment Appeals|
|Conservation Commission||Design Review Committee|
|Economic Development Commission||Board of Education|
|Board of Ethics||Board of Finance|
|Board of Fire Commissioners||Guilford Green Committee|
|Guilford Lakes Golf Course Commission||Harbor Management Commission|
|Historic District Commission||Housing Authority|
|Housing Partnership||Human Services Council|
|Inland Wetlands Commission||Land Acquisition Commission|
|Marina Commission||Pension Committee|
|Parks and Recreation Commission||Planning and Zoning Commission|
|Board of Police Commissioners||Public Works Commission|
|Scenic Roads Advisory Committee||Board of Selectmen|
|Shellfish Commission||Standing Building Committee|
|Standing Fields Committee||Town Center South Committee|
|Transfer Station Advisory Committee||Tree Advisory Board|
|Water Pollution Control Authority||Youth and Family Services Board|
|Zoning Board of Appeals||Building Code of Appeals|
Please visit the Town of Guilford website at www.ci.guilford.ct.us for more information about Boards and Commissions.