Mocciae: Norwalk acting in ‘prudent way’

The following is a response from Norwalk Department Parks and Recreation Director Mike Mocciae to criticism from the Harbor Management Commission regard damage done to the Veterans Park Visitor’s Dock during Hurricane Sandy:

By Mike Mocciae

NORWALK, Conn. – We are waiting to get the docks in place before we can estimate the damage to the electrical and the pump station. The docks are in great shape and are concrete.

As indicated by the Master Plan, one of the priorities of the plan was to replace the ramps themselves. This year I will be putting $750,000 in the capital budget to replace the ramps, which may or may not include the concrete floats. The process for the launch ramps will be long due to the permit process, pre-studies, and the bid process. I suspect it would run out at least two years. Within those two years should I operate without the docks?

The city and the department is operating in the most prudent way to save the taxpayers additional dollars. Once the plans can be initiated then we can look at the whole picture.

The ramps and the visitors’ docks are under the direction of the Recreation and Parks Department, not the Harbor Commission.

The department is permitted to put everything back the way it was prior to the storm and that is what we are doing. If the city decides they want to fund the new launch ramp facility, which is certainly needed, we will go forward with it. One of the costs that we have so far is roughly $9,600 to remove the broken piles immediately after the storm, since it was a danger to boaters. Not much repair is needed to the 20-year concrete floats. We need new piles and a transition piece at this time and wait for closer inspection on the utilities.


2 responses to “Mocciae: Norwalk acting in ‘prudent way’”

  1. John Frank

    The docks are not concrete, they are concrete shells filled with polyester foam. The foam is the flotation and it deteriorates as gasoline and other solvents are spilled nearby. It is a very durable system and was manufactured on North Warer St, where the condos are now. When all the foam is intact the sections float level in the water. As the foam disintegrates, eacxh section floats lower in the water and generally lists to one side. You may get another season or two out of them if no more 110 ft ships are allowed to berth during hurricane season.
    The harbor commission and your dept. are not natural enemies. Most of the time both strive for the same goals. It takes a good man to admit mistakes, try to learn from them, and move on. Are you a good man ?

  2. Tom Dolan

    Mr. Director..

    Thank you for reinstalling the docks so quickly.

    The question “Why the large boat was allowed to be there in violation of federal, state and local statute must have slipped your mind. If you are truly cocerned about “acting in a prudent manner, and saving taxpayers dollars” you would have listened to your advisors and moved the boat. Alas you chose the path less traveled. The dock was destroyed. Again thank you for reinstalling the dock, but even you must see that the facility is not in exactly the same location as before. Remeber those broken pilings? they are still in the mud. The dock appears to have been replaced in a similar position, not exactly the same location as the permit requires. But again I thank you for the quick repair. Oh by the way, was the removal of the broken dock pieces prior to the fire boat dedication part of the taxpayers savings initiative? We noticed the docks disappear and reappear the same day. Who paid for that?

    You must be a very talented man. Being able to keep all of these stories straight must take extraordinary effort. A word of advice, it is Ok to ask for help, to say please, and thank people that offer you good advice.

    Thank you for a job well done.

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