Town of StratfordConnecticutAnnual Comprehensive Financial ReportFiscal Year Ended June 30, 2021

Town of Stratford, ConnecticutAnnual Comprehensive Financial ReportFOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDEDJUNE 30, 2021Finance DepartmentDawn SavoFinance Director


TOWN OF STRATFORD, CONNECTICUTTABLE OF CONTENTSJUNE 30, 2021Introductory SectionTable of ContentsLetter of TransmittalOrganizational ChartList of Elected and Appointed OfficialsPagei-iiiii-viiviiiixFinancial SectionIndependent Auditors’ ReportManagement’s Discussion and Analysis1-34-12Basic Financial de Financial Statements:Statement of Net PositionStatement of Activities1314Fund Financial Statements:Balance Sheet - Governmental FundsStatement of Revenues, Expenditures and Changes in Fund Balances Governmental FundsStatement of Net Position - Proprietary FundsStatement of Revenues, Expenses and Changes in Fund Net Position Proprietary FundsStatement of Cash Flows - Proprietary FundsStatement of Fiduciary Net Position - Fiduciary FundsStatement of Changes in Plan Net Position - Fiduciary FundsNotes to Financial Statements15-1617-18192021222324-67Required Supplementary 8RSI-9RSI-10Schedule of Revenues and Other Financing Sources Budget and Actual(Non-GAAP Budgetary Basis)Schedule of Expenditures and Other Financing Uses Budget and Actual(Non-GAAP Budgetary Basis)Schedule of Changes in Net Pension Liability and Related Ratios - PensionSchedule of Employer Contributions - PensionSchedule of Investment Returns - PensionSchedule of the Town’s Proportionate Share of the Net Pension Liability Teachers Retirement PlanSchedule of Changes in Net OPEB Liability and Related Ratios - OPEBSchedule of Employer Contributions - OPEBSchedule of Investment Returns - OPEBSchedule of the Town’s Proportionate Share of the Net OPEB Liability Teachers Retirement Plani68-7071-737475767778798081

ExhibitPageCombining and Individual Fund Statements and SchedulesA-1General Fund:Report of Tax CollectorB-1B-2Nonmajor Governmental Funds:Combining Balance SheetCombining Statement of Revenues, Expenditures and Changes in Fund BalancesC-1C-282Capital Projects Fund:Project Combining Balance SheetProject Combining Schedule of Revenues, Expenditures and Changes in FundBalances83-8586-888990D-1D-2D-3Nonmajor Enterprise Funds:Combining Statement of Net PositionCombining Statement of Revenues, Expenses and Changes in Fund Net PositionCombining Statement of Cash Flows919293E-1E-2E-3Internal Service Funds:Combining Statement of Net PositionCombining Statement of Revenues, Expenses and Changes in Net PositionCombining Statement of Cash Flows949596Statistical SectionTable1234567891011121314151617Financial Trends:Net Position by ComponentChanges in Net PositionFund Balances, Governmental FundsChanges in Fund Balances, Governmental FundsRevenue Capacity:Assessed Value and Estimated Actual Value of Taxable PropertyProperty Tax Levies and CollectionsPrincipal Property TaxpayersDebt Capacity:Ratios of Outstanding Debt by TypeDirect and Overlapping Governmental Activities DebtRatios of General Bonded Debt OutstandingComputation of Legal Debt LimitationLegal Debt Margin InformationDemographic and Economic Statistics:Demographic and Economic StatisticsPrincipal EmployersFull-Time Equivalent Town Government Employees by Function/ProgramOperating Indicators by Function/ProgramCapital Asset Statistics by 8109110111112113

Stratford Town Hall, 2725 Main Street, Stratford, CT 06615Phone: 203-385-4040 Fax: 203-381-6982www.townofstratford.comDEPARTMENTOF FINANCEApril 12, 2022Honorable Laura Hoydick, MayorHonorable Town Council MembersTown of Stratford, ConnecticutConnecticut law requires that all general-purpose local governments publish at the end of each fiscal yeara complete set of audited financial statements. This report fulfills that requirement for the fiscal year endedJune 30, 2021.Management assumes full responsibility for the completeness and reliability of the information contained inthis report, based upon a comprehensive framework of internal controls that it has established for thispurpose. The cost of the internal control should never exceed anticipated benefits; therefore, the objectiveis to provide a reasonable, rather than absolute, assurance that the financial statements are free of anymaterial misstatements.Clifton Larson Allen LLP, Certified Public Accountants, have issued an unmodified (“clean”) opinion onthe Town of Stratford, Connecticut’s financial statements for the year ended June 30, 2021. Theindependent auditors’ report is located at the front of the financial section of this report.Management’s Discussion and Analysis (MD&A) immediately follows the independent auditors’ report andprovides a narrative introduction, overview and analysis of the basic financial statements. The MD&A isintended to complement this letter of transmittal and should be read in conjunction with it.Town ProfileEnglish settlers founded the Town of Stratford in 1639, making it the eighth town in the State of Connecticut.Located thirteen miles west of New Haven and adjacent to Bridgeport to the west, Milford to the east, LongIsland Sound to the south and Shelton to the north, the Town is located 65 miles east of New York City and50 miles southwest of Hartford, Connecticut. The Town encompasses approximately 18.7 square mileswithin Fairfield County.The Town is traversed by two major highways, the Merritt Parkway (Route 15) and the Connecticut Turnpike(Interstate 95). Metro-North and Amtrak provide rail service to Boston and New York. The SikorskyMemorial Airport is located within Stratford and provides business, charter and private flights. The Town isa member of the Greater Bridgeport Transit District that operates more than fifty buses on sixteen routesthat include the Towns of Stratford, Fairfield, Trumbull and the City of Bridgeport.Stratford is a balanced community of residential, waterfront and rural areas, retail and commercialdevelopment and major industrial plants. The large selection of affordable homes is one reason manycompanies have located here. The Town has more land zoned for industry than any other town in the Stateof Connecticut, almost all of which is within five minutes of either Interstate 95 or the Merritt Parkway. TheStratford Industrial Park, located one half mile from Interstate 95 and Sikorsky Airport, is the site of muchbusiness growth in recent years.The Town’s public school system provides a balanced curriculum for 6,699 students. There are severalvocational training facilities, colleges and universities in close proximity to Stratford, which offer a variety ofeducational programs. The public school system consists of three schools for pupils in grades Pre-Kthrough 6, five schools for pupils in grades K through 6, two schools for pupils in grades 7-8 and two schoolsfor pupils in grades 9-12. The schools are governed by a seven-member elected Board of Education.The Town’s location on Long Island Sound provides residents with three public beaches, five marinas, afishing pier and public launch ramp. In addition, Roosevelt Forest and Boothe Memorial Park are ideal forhiking, picnics and cross-country skiing during winter.iiioffering more from forest to shore

The Town offers a variety of cultural attractions, including a variety of museums (including the twonewest: Stratford Veterans Museum and The African American History Museum), plus the SterlingHouse Community Center which offers low cost, high quality programs.The Town provides a full range of services including public safety, street maintenance, sanitation,health and human services, public parks and recreation, library, education, culture, public improvement,planning, zoning, sewer and general administrative services.Town Local EconomyTown Local EconomyStratford is strategically located between New York City and Boston and has excellent transportationaccess that has attracted and sustained economic development over the years. Stratford is bisected byboth Interstate 95 and Metro North rail service lines. The Merritt Parkway and Routes 8 and 25 offerconvenient access to the entire Northeast corridor. Stratford has over 17 miles of coastline, 400 acres offorest, beautiful parks and a rich cultural heritage creating a unique quality of life for our multigenerational residents. Stratford's diverse community of over 52,100 residents offers world classemployers, a highly skilled workforce, excellent transportation access and affordable living.In spite of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, economic activity continues to be vibrant in the Town ofStratford. The Town continues to attract owners of all types of businesses (from medical, personal andhousehold services to distribution, office, retail, wholesale and dining establishments) that choose theTown of Stratford for its diverse zoning, geographic advantages and as an affordable location in FairfieldCounty.We continue to work with multiple Federal and State agencies in support of Sikorsky, A Lockheed MartinCompany, Stratford’s largest employer, updating road infrastructure in preparation for the expectedgrowth by more than 8,000 new workers within the next decade (with over 1,000 new hires in 2020alone.) Stratford obtained a 1.5m Urban Action Grant from DECD to fund an infrastructure project onRoute 110, at the Sikorsky entranceway, and shepherded the project through to its official completion infall of 2020. The project has greatly improved the safety and accessibility of the Sikorsky facility for bothpedestrian and motor vehicle traffic.Redevelopment of Stratford’s former Army Engine Plant, a 77-acre waterfront property, is imminent, asthe Army prepares to transfer the property to the developer, Point Stratford Renewal, in the secondquarter of 2022. This developed site will stimulate the economy in Stratford and the surrounding region.Stratford’s Transit Oriented District (TOD) has a 3.6 acre property in the heart of downtown, next to theMetro North Railroad. The former school site has been demolished and abated and the Town is in theprocess of selecting one of two finalist developers for this focal development. Multiple TOD projects havebeen approved for development and will generate major tax revenue. Construction of the Exit 33 fullinterchange for I95 is ahead of schedule, with completion of the northbound on-ramp and the southboundramp slated for completion in the spring 2022. This long-awaited development will provide easier access,both north and southbound along the Ferry Boulevard corridor, for these TOD developments.Since Two Roads Brewing Company first opened in 2012, the craft brewing industry has taken hold inStratford. Two Roads continues to be a major destination not only in Stratford but in the State ofConnecticut. They opened a second brewery, Area 2 Experimental Brewing, in 2019 and doubled theiremployee base. Athletic Brewing Company, which started in 2017 in Stratford, is now an award-winningbrewer of the best non-alcoholic beer in the world. Night Shift Brewing out of Massachusetts opened theirfirst out-of-state distribution center in Stratford, and Fairfield Craft Ales rounds out the offerings under newownership.iv

Additionally, on Stratford Avenue where Two Roads is located, the Town has a streetscape project in thedesign phase, creating a whole new corridor along the “doorway to Stratford” with improvements in thisarea not seen since the industrial revolution.The United States Environmental Protection Agency’s comprehensive cleanup plan for Stratford’sRaymark Industries Inc., Superfund Sites is underway with shovels in the ground. The EPA and State ofConnecticut have committed to investing 95,000,000 to clean up the community, opening up tax revenueopportunities for the first time in 25 years. The cleanup is expected to be complete within two years.A10.9 acre, Town-owned brownfield property, site of the former Contract Plating Company, received a 2.8M grant from Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) toremediate and demolish the site which lies within the TOD. Much remediation has already taken placeand this major site is now being marketed for development.The first and major phase of Knott’s Landing development was completed in January 2021 and consistsof a storage facility and multiple retail spaces including a Chipotle Mexican Grill. The second and finalphase will consist of a Starbucks. This site on Sidney Street has transformed from a few residentialhouses to a large commercial property, providing significantly higher tax revenue for the town.The first phase of a new development behind Ryder’s Landing, to be called “Parkway Plaza,” is nowunderway. This first phase will consist of a coffee shop (Starbucks?), to be followed by a restaurant, aretail and office building, and a boutique hotel on this six-acre property. The second phase will most likelybegin in 2022.Amazon opened a 200,000 SF distribution facility in Stratford in early summer 2020. This location servesas a “last mile delivery station.” They’ve hired 230 full and part-time workers, and four Delivery ServicePartners who together employ upwards of 100 individual route drivers.A significant, long-vacant property at 495 Lordship Boulevard (former site of Mobil Chemical) was sold toa developer who recently completed construction of a 400K SF distribution facility at the site. FedEx is thenew tenant, and this property will be a significant addition to Stratford’s tax rolls.Down the road on Access Rd, the old Aptar building is in the process of being retrofitted for a medicalmarijuana manufacturer, bringing in a significant number of competitive paying jobs.In addition to the aforementioned major developments, there are a number of thriving Stratfordbusinesses that are looking for expansion space within Town. Together with the many businesses thatcontinue to bypass lower Fairfield County and choose Stratford, these businesses will all positivelycontribute to our Grand List in coming years.Recent Town OperationsThe Town, through its elected and administrative officials, continues to take steps to review, redefineand restructure various approaches in policy and management in order to effectively manage criticalissues.On March 13, 2020, the President of the United States declared a national emergency as a result ofthe COVID-19 outbreak. The outbreak of the virus has affected travel, commerce and financial marketsglobally, as well as the health and well being of the population. The Town faced many challengesduring the last half of fiscal year 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic response that continued duringfiscal year 2021 with additional variants and required response by Public Safety and Public Health. TheTown was able to pivot public hearings and meetings to a digital online format as needed and authorizea budget for FY2021 that anticipated uncertainty in all areas of operations while ensuring continuationof critical government services. The Mayor and the Town Council met the challenge. The Mayor hasv

proposed a budget to Town Council for FY2022 again that maintains public services to the communitywithout increasing the mil rate despite the challenges of the pandemic and uncertain State funding. TheTown was awarded American Rescue Plan Act funding in the amount of 25,928,479.41 to be releasedin two tranches, one in 2021 and the second in 2022. The funds can be used for revenue recovery ifneeded. The Town Council authorized roughly 4.5 million to be used for capital plan purchases ratherthan borrowing funds. During the pandemic, The Town continues to serve the residents, businesses,and taxpayers while remaining fully open to the public.During budget meetings, every department head was asked to review each program, analyzeexpenditures and to justify all budget deviations from the prior year to the Chief Administrative Officer,Mayor, and Director of Finance. On the revenue side of the budget, the final budget incorporated all thechanges on the State Intergovernmental Revenues.Annually the Town prepares a Five Year Capital Improvement & Equipment Program, which is reviewedby the Town Council. The Plan includes various projects and equipment purchases for the five-yearperiod beginning with Fiscal Year 2021 and ending with Fiscal Year 2025.The Town is currently undertaking a major school improvement project. The school project consists ofcomprehensive renovations and/or additions at the existing Stratford High School. The project willinclude complete new or like new construction of building envelope renovation, reconfiguration ofexisting spaces to maximize efficiency, additional science classrooms, gym facilities, media center,auditorium HVAC, energy efficiency and related site improvements. The Town Council recentlyapproved the addition of photovoltaic solar panels to be installed to the new roof as part of the overallproject. The energy saving panels are reimbursable by the state at the same rate as the constructionand due to cost savings the contingency will be used for the Town’s portion. The renovation to StratfordHigh School will cost 126,000,000. The town’s portion of the renovation will be 52,600,000 and theremaining costs will be covered by state reimbursements.For more information regarding recent Town operations refer to the Management Discussion &Analysis section within.Recent Financial ResultsFor the fiscal year ended June 30, 2021, the General Fund ended in a year-end operating surplus of 3,990,102,The year end surplus is largely due to a combination of cost containment efforts such as halting all nonessential projects and monitoring purchases; as well as robust tax collections. Though the TownCouncil offered tax deferrals due to the Covid-19 impact on personal and business finances, very fewresidents and businesses made use of the program.Although there are more unknowns than usual heading into Fiscal Year 2021-2022 due to the ongoingpandemic response by local government including vaccination distribution, in addition to unionnegotiations with Town’s collective bargaining units; the Town will endeavor to control spending, reachits collection goals, and strive to achieve operational excellence as the taxpayers, residents, andbusiness owners of Stratford are accustomed to and deserve.For more information regarding recent Town operations refer to the Management Discussion &Analysis section within.Town OrganizationFrom 1921 until 2005, the Town of Stratford operated under a Council-Manager form of government. InNovember 2003, the electors of the Town approved a referendum authorizing a revision to the Charterrequiring a change to a Mayor-Council form of government. The new form of government took effect onvi

December 12, 2005 when the Town’s first Mayor was sworn into office. The Mayor is a full time,compensated, elected official with a term of four (4) years. The Mayor is recognized as the head of theTown and appoints all department heads including the Town Attorney, appoints citizens tocommissions, prepares the budget, establishes criteria for evaluation of subordinates, and signs orvetoes legislation passed by the Town Council. This power includes the ability to veto a specific lineitem within proposed operating budgets. The Mayor’s attendance at all Council meetings is required,but the Mayor is not able to vote unless to break a tie vote of the Town Council. A Chief AdministrativeOfficer (the "CAO") is appointed by the Mayor, and assists the Mayor with budget preparation, labornegotiations, and any other areas deemed appropriate by the Mayor. A bipartisan Town Council of tenmembers, who are elected for two-year terms, performs the legislative function. The Town Councilapproves the annual budget, supplemental appropriations and bond authorizations.Policies and PracticeDebtIn Fiscal Year 2021, the Town continued to pay principal and interest payments on its PensionObligation Bonds directly from the General Fund. On December 8, 2020, the Town issued 29,105,000of general obligation bonds and 13,845,000 of general obligation bond anticipation notes. The Townalso issued 78,100,000 in general obligation refunding bonds. The new money bonds will maturethrough 2040 and the refunding will mature through 2034. The bond anticipation note (BAN) wasredeemed in December 2021 and the Town issued 12,245,000 million of BANS again in December of2021 and March of 2022 at a rate of 1% with a net interest cost (NIC) of .304% and .698% respectively.The BANS will mature in May of 2022 when the Town will bond again for capital projects. The Town’srefunding took advantage of the low rate environment by refinancing 39.1 million of 2013 pensionobligation bonds from 5.673% down to 1.72%, saving taxpayers 4.7 million; and refinancing another 29.6 million of other outstanding bonds down to 1.84% from 4.34% saving an additional 2.8 millionfor taxpayers over the life of the bonds. Overall, the entire refunding created budgetary relief of 9.1million for Stratfordites.TaxesDuring the fiscal year ended 2021, the Town collected 97.98% of its current tax levy. Property taxeslevied increased by 4,409,733 over the prior year. The current year tax collections totaled 185,465,100 with the arrear taxes and interest collected was 5,261,506.AcknowledgementsI am grateful for our independent audit team from CliftonLarsonAllen LLP for their professionalguidance, assistance, and helpful comments and suggestions. As always they help us do better eachyear.Also, I would like to give special thanks to my staff who worked numerous hours on the preparation ofthis report – they are amazing and really rose to the occasion during this health, public safety, andeconomic crisis to continue to serve our customers who include fellow employees, vendors, taxpayers,residents, retired employees, investors, and the public in general.In closing, without the leadership and support of the Town administration and the assistance of variousTown departments, preparation of this report would not have been possible.Respectfully Submitted,Dawn M. SavoDawn M. Savo, Finance Directorvii

RESIDENTS OFSTRATFORDTOWN OF STRATFORDORGANIZATIONAL CHARTMayorLegalAssistantDirector of PublicSafety/EmergencyManagement/ SchoolSafetyChief t tothe hief of PoliceChief of FireDirector of EMSCommunications/DispatchDirector ofPublic WorksDeputy PublicWorks DirectorTown ClerkDirector ofEconomicDevelopmentFinanceDirectorDirector of orParksPlanning unityDevelopmentTax ngand nceEngineeringConservationDirector ofHealthviiiBlightSenior Services

TOWN OF STRATFORD, CONNECTICUTPRINCIPAL TOWN OFFICIALSLaura R. Hoydick, MayorTOWN COUNCILChristopher Pia, Council ChairKaitlyn ShakePaul TavarasDavid L. HardenGregory CannKen PoissonBill PerilloJames ConnorWilliam O’BrienLaura DanchoBOARD OF EDUCATIONChairman . Allison DelBeneVice-Chairman . Amy WiltsieSecretary. Vincent FaggellaBoard Member . Andrea CorcoranBoard Member . Bob DeLorenzoBoard Member . Janice CupeeBoard Member . Karen RodiaDr. Janet M. Robinson,Superintendent of SchoolsADMINISTRATIONChief Administrative Officer . Christopher TymniakFinance Director. Dawn SavoTown Clerk . Susan PawlukTreasurer . Gisela MouraAssessor . Donna OtlowskiTax Collector . Selina MoschelloTown Attorney . Christopher Hodgsonix

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Financial Section

CliftonLarsonAllen LLPCLAconnect.comIndependent Auditors’ ReportTo the Members of the Town CouncilTown of Stratford, ConnecticutReport on the Financial StatementsWe have audited the accompanying financial statements of the governmental activities, the businesstype activities, each major fund and the aggregate remaining fund information of the Town of Stratford,Connecticut, as of and for the year ended June 30, 2021, and the related notes to the financialstatements, which collectively comprise the Town of Stratford, Connecticut’s basic financial statementsas listed in the table of contents.Management’s Responsibility for the Financial StatementsManagement is responsible for the preparation and fair presentation of these financial statements inaccordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America; this includesthe design, implementation and maintenance of internal control relevant to the preparation and fairpresentation of financial statements that are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud orerror.Auditors’ ResponsibilityOur responsibility is to express opinions on these financial statements based on our audit. Weconducted our audit in accordance with auditing standards generally accepted in the United States ofAmerica and the standards applicable to financial audits contained in Government Auditing Standards,issued by the Comptroller General of the United States. Those standards require that we plan andperform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements are free frommaterial misstatement.An audit involves performing procedures to obtain audit evidence about the amounts and disclosures inthe financial statements. The procedures selected depend on the auditors’ judgment, including theassessment of the risks of material misstatement of the financial statements, whether due to fraud orerror. In making those risk assessments, the auditor considers internal control relevant to the entity’spreparation and fair presentation of the financial statements in order to design audit procedures that areappropriate in the circumstances, but not for the purpose of expressing an opinion on the effectivenessof the entity’s internal control. Accordingly, we express no such opinion. An audit also includesevaluating the appropriateness of accounting policies used and the reasonableness of significantaccounting estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of thefinancial statements.We believe that the audit evidence we have obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis forour audit opinions.CLA is an independent member of Nexia International, a leading, global network of independentaccounting and consulting firms. See‐firm‐disclaimer for details.1

OpinionsIn our opinion, the financial statements referred to above present fairly, in all material respects, therespective financial position of the governmental activities, the business-type activities, each major fundand the aggregate remaining fund information of the Town of Stratford, Connecticut, as of June 30,2021 and the respective changes in financial position and, where applicable, cash flows thereof, for theyear then ended in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States ofAmerica.Emphasis of MatterDuring fiscal year ended June 30, 2021, the Town of Stratford, Connecticut adopted GASB StatementNo. 84 Fiduciary Activities. As a result of the implementation of this standard, the Town of Stratford,Connecticut reported a restatement for the change in accounting principle (see Note 13) Our auditors’opinion was not modified with respect to the restatement.Other MattersRequired Supplementary InformationAccounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America require that themanagement’s discussion and analysis, the budgetary comparison information and the pension andOPEB schedules, as listed in the table of contents, be presented to supplement the basic financialstatements. Such information, although not a part of the basic financial statements, is required by theGovernmental Accounting Standards Board, who considers it to be an essential part of financialreporting for placing the basic financial statements in an appropriate operational, economic or historicalcontext. We have applied certain limited procedures to the required supplementary information inaccordance with auditing standards generally accepted in the United States of America, whichconsisted of inquiries of management about the methods of preparing the information and comparingthe information for consistency with management’s responses to

Stratford Town Hall, 2725 Main Street, Stratford, CT 06615 Phone: 203 -385 -40 )D[ -381 -6982 April 12, 2022 Honorable Laura Hoydick, Mayor Honorable Town Council Members . The schools a