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Several local school districts to receive little or no state education funding

Education funding from the state to municipalities has been updated by Governor Malloy as he continues to run government by executive order due to a lack of a legislatively approved budget.  He is prioritizing allocations for Alliance Districts and students with the highest needs.  54 districts will see reduced funding, while the 85 that rely on state support the least for overall district funding will be zeroed out.

 

Malloy says municipal aid funding as part of the executive order reflects the nearly impossible decisions Connecticut is forced to make in the absence of a budget.  He acknowledged that this will force some municipalities, large and small, to make difficult decisions.  

 

The Chairman of the Bethel Board of Education wrote an open letter on Facebook to state lawmakers about his frustrations with the budget stalemate and proposed education funding cuts.  Larry Craybas said that schools will open in less than two weeks in total confusion with larger class sizes at every grade level.  He notes that DRG D Districts like Bethel and neighboring New Milford face monumental cuts. 

 

Craybas added that the problem Governor Malloy has created in his Executive Order on August 2nd affects all districts, including the Alliance Districts he anticipates helping.  Alliance Districts are the 30 lowest performing.  If the cuts do go through, Bethel anticipates needing to lay off upwards of a quarter of teaching and support staffs.  Craybas says the damage from cutting 119 people will last for generations of students.  He believes Bethel could possibly become an Alliance District.

 

He called the executive order an indefensible manipulation of ECS funds that will dramatically damage what Bethel has been able to achieve over many years.

 

In addition to larger class sizes, Craybas cautioned that intervention support for children that need this additional help to learn, grow in achievement, and eventually become productive members of society will be seriously reduced or eliminated entirely.

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Man suspected of selling drugs at Danbury business caught with illegal gun

A Waterbury man suspected of selling drugs from his Danbury business was found in possession of a gun yesterday which had the serial number altered. 

 

Danbury Police had been conducting surveillance for weeks of 30-year old Omar Thomas based on neighbor complaints of drug sales.  The SWAT team carried out search warrants at Imperial Sound Studios on White Street yesterday. 

 

21-year old Tyreek Wallace, who was driving another vehicle, and a known drug abuser walking in the area were also stopped. The unnamed man had $40 in his hands, as he walked straight toward Thomas.  He wasn't charged.  Wallace was issued an infraction for possession of a small amount of marijuana. 

 

Thomas was in possession of cocaine, heroin and marijuana.  He was charged with possession of narcotics, possession with intent to sell, possession within 1,500 feet of a prohibited place, possession with intent to sell within 1,500 feet of a prohibited place, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of drug paraphernalia within 1,500 feet of a prohibited place, possession of less than half an ounce of marijuana, altering/removing ID marks of a pistol, criminal possession of a pistol and operating with a suspended license.

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United Illuminating cautioning of planned power outage in Easton

United Illuminating will be conducting system testing at an electrical substation in Fairfield tomorrow.  Between 3am and 5am, customers of Easton, Fairfield and Bridgeport may experience a brief power outage.  The utility says the outage is expected to last less than 5 minutes.  If anyone is dependent on life-saving medical equipment and not registered with United Illuminating as a life-support customer, they are urged to contact the utility. 

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Danbury schools prepare for return of students

Danbury Public School staff are getting ready for the return of students.  School information including bus routes and policies will be available on the district website after August 29th.  The first day of school is Tuesday, September 5th.  The delay is to give some buffer time for renovations to finish at the High School.  Schools are preparing to send home packets to kindergarten families. For those receiving free or reduced lunch, a new form needs to be filled out each year.

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Road closures announced in Ridgefield, Bridgewater

A portion of Lake Lillinonah Road South in Bridgewater will be temporarily closed through September 1st.  Emergency repairs are needed to the culvert under the road near the Bridgewater Town Park.  The closure is from the area of 9 Lake Lillinonah Road South to the intersection with Tappan Road.  Residents will still be able to access their properties from Henry Sanford Road.  The length of the closures is weather dependent.

 

The second in a series of weekend road closures for Route 7 in Ridgefield starts tonight.  The intersection of Route 102 to 35 will be closed and traffic detoured between 8 o'clock this evening to Monday at 6am.  Drivers are called on to take alternate routes.

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UPDATED: 16-year old boy charged with murder in death of 18-year old

A 16-year old boy has been charged in the death of an 18-year-old who was found with fatal injuries next to his vehicle earlier this month.

Danbury police say Lorenzo Santana of Danbury was arrested Thursday on charges of felony murder and other offenses. He was already in custody and detained at a Juvenile Detention Center on unrelated charges.

Officers responded to a report of suspicious activity on August 5th on Abbott Avenue. Gabriel Bara-Bardo was unconscious in the road next to his vehicle.

The state medical examiner's office ruled that Bara-Bardo's cause of death was complications following blunt impact to the head and neck. His death was ruled a homicide.

 

The investigation is ongoing.  Police say more arrests are expected. 

 

15-year old Ronald Massagli of Danbury was also charged this week.  Both teens also were arrested for robbery, criminal mischief, larceny, and four counts of conspiracy to commit the listed charges.

 

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UPDATED: Temporary stay of deportation granted for New Fairfield man

A temporary stay of deportation has been granted for a New Fairfield man who was about to board a plane for his native Guatemala.  Joel Colindres was less than an hour away from self-deporting Thursday afternoon, when word came of the stay issued by the U.S. Second District Circuit Court of Appeals.  The 33-year old had been told 28 days ago that he had to leave the country by August 17.

 

(Colindres family Facebook,)

 

Colindres married Connecticut native Samantha a decade ago and they've been fighting with paperwork errors since then.  Joel missed a court date in 2004 in Texas because he never received the notice.  ICE had his address wrong and both his first and last names were spelled wrong.  The couple has two young children.

 

 

5th District Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty called Colindres a hardworking father who pays his taxes, contributes to his community, and has no criminal record.  He will now have the opportunity to make his case in court, and can remain with his wife and children while he does so.

 

Esty says while this reprieve is a step toward justice for the Colindres family, their experience is a perfect illustration of how broken the immigration system is.

 

Senator Chris Murphy says he is relieved for the Colindres family and that his office will continue to work with Immigration and Customs Enforcement so that Joel can stay in Connecticut with his family.  He added that targeting families like this one is an abomination.

 

Senator Richard Blumenthal says reason and justice have prevailed, at least temporarily so that Colindres can pursue a fair hearing.

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Boughton, surgeon talk about brain tumor

Mayor Mark Boughton has returned to Danbury following brain surgery to remove a lemon sized benign cyst.  The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center published a video featuring Boughton and his surgeon, Dr. Robert Friedlander talking about the operation.

 

When he started suffering from exhaustion in the afternoons, Boughton sought answers.  He was given variety of diagnoses ranging from needing exercise to have Lyme Disease.  After he lost his vision one day for about 25 minutes, Boughton went to the Danbury Hospital Emergency Room and got an MRI, which revealed the tumor.  He got four opinions and three of the four recommended Dr. Friedlander.

 

Friedlander says image guidance and high definition fiber tractography to target the general area.  He says that demonstrated the relationship between the tumor and the important structures and the function of the brain. 

 

 

Within 48 hours of surgery, Boughton was out and walking around Pittsburgh.

 

Boughton thanked people for their well wishes as he recovers and says he is excited to return stronger than ever.  He also noted that he's still moving full steam ahead in his bid for higher office.  Boughton is already planning fundraising events around the state, as early as this coming Tuesday.  He plans to work a few hours a day next week before being in city hall full time after Labor Day.  Boughton has two fundraisers planned during each of the next two weeks as he explores a run for statewide office.

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Parents of Newtown victims want to know if teachers had keys

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) -- Lawyers for the parents of two children killed in the Newtown school shooting are demanding to see evidence that two teachers fatally shot in the massacre had access to keys that could have been used to lock the doors of their classrooms.

 

The attorneys filed motions in Danbury Superior Court this week asking a judge to allow them to examine two red emergency folders, now in state police custody, that were kept in the two classrooms to see if they contain door keys, as lawyers for Newtown say they do.

 

The request comes as part of a wrongful death lawsuit by the parents of victims Jesse Lewis and Noah Pozner against Newtown on allegations that security measures at Sandy Hook Elementary School were not adequate.

 

Among the numerous allegations in the lawsuit is that school officials failed to provide keys to either teacher Victoria Soto or substitute teacher Lauren Rousseau so they could follow school lockdown procedures and lock their doors. A lockdown, however, wasn't ordered at any time during the shooting, Newtown's lawyers say in court documents.

 

The lawsuit also says Newtown should be held liable for the fact that the classroom doors could only be locked from the outside in the hallway, which would have made it impossible for Soto and Rousseau to safely lock their doors as Lanza approached their rooms after shooting his way through the locked front glass entryway.

Fifteen students and Rousseau were killed in Room 8, and five students and Soto were slain in Room 10.

 

The motions to review the emergency folders were filed Tuesday, nearly two months after Newtown lawyers disclosed in court documents that the folders in every classroom contained keys. Newtown lawyers previously have said the teachers had keys, but they were not more specific.

 

"They're saying the keys were kept in the red folders," said Donald Papcsy, a lawyer for the parents suing the town. "We're saying, OK, let's go look."

 

Papcsy added that even if Soto and Rousseau did not have time to lock their doors before Lanza entered their classrooms, school officials set them up to fail to be able to follow lockdown procedures. He said the aim of the lawsuit is to make sure schools have adequate emergency plans.

 

John Cannavino Jr., an attorney representing the town, said he does not comment on pending litigation.

 

In court documents, lawyers for Newtown said there is no evidence security was inadequate, Lanza's actions caused the deaths and municipalities are immune from the liability of others. School officials had put new security measures in place at the beginning of the 2012-13 school year, including locking doors during school hours.

 

Even if Rousseau and Soto had keys and the doors could be locked from the inside, it's not clear whether the teachers could have locked the doors in time or prevented any deaths, said Phil Santore, senior principal of the Hamden, Connecticut-based security consulting firm DVS.

 

"Anyone can argue if I had a key I could have locked the door. Maybe you could, maybe you couldn't," said Santore, whose firm consulted on the new World Trade Center buildings in New York and the new Sandy Hook Elementary School that was built after the old one was torn down. "I don't know that there's anything definitive you could say about it."

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Swim area at state park remains closed due to algae

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Cafe no longer being probed in death of Chris Berman's wife

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - Connecticut officials say they have closed an investigation of a restaurant after finding no violations in connection with a car crash that killed the wife of longtime ESPN broadcaster Chris Berman.

The state Liquor Control Division investigated whether 67-year-old Katherine Berman was served alcohol at the Good News Cafe in Woodbury before the May 9 crash. Officials announced Thursday that no violations were found.

Restaurant owner Carole Peck said the cafe was closed on the day of the accident.

State police and liquor control officials are still investigating the crash.

Katherine Berman, of Cheshire, was killed when her vehicle hit the rear of an SUV and flipped over in Woodbury. The 87-year-old SUV driver also died.

The results of toxicology tests on Katherine Berman have not been released.

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Judge orders Danbury nanny abuse video sealed indefinitely

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DNA evidence links Oxford man to 2014 New Milford gas station robbery

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Brookfield officials warn residents of telemarketing scam

Brookfield officials are warning residents about a telemaketing scam with a caller ID displayed as "Town of Brookfield".  Several residents alerted town hall to the calls, which ended up being someone trying to sell credit cards.  Residents were encouraged to not give out personal information to suspicious callers and to verify the authenticity of such a request directly with the company or government agency seeking the data.

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Danbury man killed in Wilton car crash

Police are investigating a fatal car crash in Wilton.  The collision happened last night on Route 7 at Old Mill Road.  The area was closed for several hours last night as police investigated.  Wilton Police say one driver was killed and the other was transported to the hospital.  Police say 68-year old George Najam of Danbury was headed northbound when he crossed the center line and hit another car head on.  The other driver, a Stamford woman, sustained non-life threatening injuries.  She was treated and released from Danbury Hospital.

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15-year old boy charged with murder in death of 18-year old

A 15-year-old boy has been charged in the death of an 18-year-old who was found with fatal injuries next to his vehicle earlier this month.

Danbury police say Ronald Massagli of Danbury was arrested yesterday on charges of felony murder and other offenses. He was taken to Bridgeport Juvenile Detention Center.

Officers responded to a report of suspicious activity on August 5th on Abbott Avenue. Gabriel Bara-Bardo was unconscious in the road next to his vehicle.

The state medical examiner's office ruled that Bara-Bardo's cause of death was complications following blunt impact to the head and neck. His death was ruled a homicide.

Police say more arrests are expected.

 

Massagli was also charged with robbery, criminal mischief, larceny, and four counts of conspiracy to commit the listed charges.

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Murphy makes Newtown stop during 'Walk Across Connecticut'

A standing ovation from a standing room only crowd when Senator Chris Murphy walked into his town hall meeting in Newtown Wednesday night after a 25 mile leg of his Walk Across Connecticut.  Murphy called it an enormous crowd.

 

 

Murphy said he's making this now second annual trek because people are maxed out in life and don't always have time to call or write. He noted that this gives him an organic sense of what's important to his constituents. What surprised him this year was that people were waiting on the side of the road for him for hours to tell him their stories.

 

Murphy turned into a bit of a senatorial Forrest Gump. People spontaneously joined him from the Housatonic all the way into Newtown.

 

When asked about Trump, and generally what is going on in D.C., Murphy called him "a president who makes an exceptional amount of news".

 

Murphy is hearing most about worry over having good schools, lack of state budget and small business owners being squeezed.  People talked most though about health care.  Murphy stated that he frequently asks himself 'what if we came together in health care?' and then told himself there would be plenty else to fight over.

 

Questions were raised about the violence and protests in Charlottesville.  Murphy told the crowd that it's easy to fester hate when you don't live among diversity.  He condemned the actions.

 

 

When it comes to DACA and protecting the so-called Dreamers, the children brought to this country and are undocumented, Murphy said sending them back to a country they don't know may be following the letter of law, but not conscious of the nation.

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Emergency stay denied, New Fairfield man to be deported to Guatemala

The Board of Immigration Appeal has denied an emergency stay on a deportation order for a New Fairfield man.  Immigration and Customs Enforcement has also denied a stay for Joel Colindres and he must leave the country for Guatemala today. 

 

His wife Samantha, a Connecticut native, said in a written statement that she is devastated, broken, and angry.  The couple has two young children. 

 

Colindres still has a pending motion, that if approved it could bring him back.  At the minimum he will be away from his family for 8 months.  That is why the family says they are not seeking sanctuary in a church. Disobeying this order could make him a criminal fugitive and impair his path to citizenship down the road.

 

Colindres came to the U.S. illegally from Guatemala 13 years ago.  He married New Fairfield native Samantha a decade ago and they've been fighting with paperwork errors since then.  Joel  missed a court date in 2004 in Texas because he never received the notice.  ICE had his address wrong and both his first and last names were spelled wrong.

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Brewster man charged with sexually assaulting a minor

A Brewster man has been arrested for sexually assaulting a minor.  New York State Police arrested 22-year old Gildardo Perez Tuesday for felony Criminal Sex Act. 

 

Troopers responded to a 911 call about a sexual offense in the Town of Southeast last Friday.  An investigation revealed that Perez had sexual contact with girl under the age of 15 whom he met through Facebook.  Perez was arraigned and ordered held on $20,000 bond.  He was ordered to appear in Southeast Justice Court on September 19th.  

 

State Police were assisted by the Putnam County Child Advocacy Center. 

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Former attorney indicted for defrauding clients, family and friends

A Newtown man has been indicted for defrauding his law practice clients, family and friends out of nearly $2 million.  61-year old Thomas Murtha was indicted on four counts of wire fraud yesterday.  He allegedly told clients that he safeguarded and disbursed proceeds from legal representations, but he used the money for his own benefit. 

 

Murtha allegedly used forged documents, including at least one mortgage and a trust document to keep the fraud going.  He allegedly used the money to buy a house in Michigan, a more than two carat diamond engagement ring and other items. 

 

If convicted, Murtha faces up to 20 years in prison on each count.  The indictment seeks the forfeiture of the Michigan house and the engagement ring, as well as a money judgment of at least $1,991,628, which constitutes proceeds of the alleged fraud scheme.


Murtha was arrested on a criminal complaint on April 5, and released on a $10,000 bond. His arraignment is not yet scheduled.

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Two arrested in Danbury in connection to alleged drug sales

Resident complaints about drug sales around Danbury have led to the arrests of a Bethel man and one from Danbury.  Search warrants were issued for 25-year old Jeremy Colon of Bethel and his grey Honda.  He was the focus of another investigation in June, which resulted in his arrest for multiple drug offenses.

 

While conducting a surveillance of a Shelter Rock Road parking lot yesterday, a location Colon was suspected of selling drugs from, investigators saw a sale being made.  He was found in possession of controlled substances and arrested.

 

A man connected to Colon, was also stopped in the parking lot and issued an infraction.  25-year old Willian Pesarini of Danbury was charged with possession of a controlled substance and od drug paraphernalia.

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Watertown resident disrupts burglary, four suspects arrested

A Watertown resident disrupted a burglary at his home Tuesday.  Police say the resident spotted an unknown vehicle in his driveway and called 911.  Watertown Police found the back door kicked in, and four suspects inside. 

 

29-year-olds Phillip Santelle of Seymour and William Gibson of Waterbury, 27-year-old Krystine Gilbert of Bridgeport, and 23-year-old Katryana Freberg of Torrington were charged with burglary, criminal mischief, possession of burglary tools, attempted larceny, interfering with an officer, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

 

Police say a safe was broken into, copper pipes cut and items rummaged through.  Items were recovered from the vehicle.  Crack cocaine, an empty heroin bag, a needle and crack pipes were found among the burglar tools. 

 

Police say the four were tied to a Sunday burglary.

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Former Easton EMT gets restraining orders added to charges

A former Easton EMT has had two restraining orders added to charges against him.  Police found a cache of weapons in 20-year old Christopher Barlow's Massachusetts home in June.  The Easton Courier reports that he's been held since his arrest, but his former girlfriend requested a restraining order. 

 

The Judge also granted a request for an order of protection for the girl's 14-year old sister. 

 

The Sacred Heart University student was part of a college live-in program with Easton EMS.  A probably cause hearing is set for September 22nd. 

 

He was also charged for impersonating a police officer.  A police baton, handcuffs, a fake Homeland Security ID card, a special agent Coast Guard badge and a Connecticut special officer’s badge were also found. 

 

According to Channel 7 News in Boston, a family member turned a firearm over to Duxbury Police that Barlow had assembled.  The 20-year old reportedly later showed up at the station requesting his gun be given back.

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Brookfield man charged for allegedly assaulting a woman in front of a child

A Brookfield man was arrested over the weekend in Wilton for allegedly trying to strangle and assault a woman who tried to get out of his car.  The Wilton Bulletin reports that passerbys alerted police to a woman walking next to a car driven by 25-year old Donald Karagianes.  He was arrested for violating a protective order, breach of peace, strangulation and assault.  Karagianes was also charged with risk of injury to a minor because there was a child in the vehicle.

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Newtown updates town law on alarm system registration

Newtown officials have updated town ordinances about alarm systems in an effort to reduce the number of false alarms.   Home and commercial users are encouraged to keep their contact information up to date with police. 

 

Starting July 1st, all alarm systems in Newtown must be registered and renewed annually.  The Newtown Police Department, with the help of the Town IT Department, has created an online registration/renewal application.  Fees can also now be paid online. 

 

Having an unregistered alarm system could result in a $99 fine. 

 

A 2nd false alarm will cost $25.  The fee doubles for the 3rd and 4th false alarm.  It will cost $100 for a 5th, 6th, or 7th false alarm, doubling for the 8th and 9th.  If a home or business alarm system falsely goes off 10 times or more, it's a $250 fee.

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New York State Police beef up enforcement on I-684

New York State Police carried out an enhanced enforcement effort yesterday, looking for distracted drivers on Interstate 684.  During a six hour time frame, Troopers issued a total of 55 tickets.  10 were for speeding, 3 for seatbelt violations, 11 for cell phone violations and 23 tickets for "move-over" law violations.  The balance of the tickers were issued for other vehicle and traffic offenses.

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Following brain surgery, Danbury Mayor to return to work Monday

Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton anticipates being back in the City this weekend and back in the office on Monday.  Boughton plans to work a few hours a day next week and return full time after labor day.  For now, the 53-year old is in Pittsburgh waiting to have stitches taken out after a surgery to remove a benign, lemon-sized cyst from his brain. 

 

A pathologist confirmed that it was a benign epidermoid cyst. 

 

Boughton told Hearst Connecticut Media that the night before the surgery he spent hours praying, crying and thinking about what sort of person he had been.  The published report also said that Boughton suffered severe exhaustion in the afternoons, starting almost four years ago.  Recently his headaches became bad and one day last month, his vision went blurry for 25 minutes.

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New Milford Mayor warned about Facebook post being breach of contract with state agency

The state Office of Early Childhood has sent a letter to New Milford's Mayor saying that one of his recent Facebook posts is a “breach of contract” with the state.  In the posting, Mayor David Gronbach was critical of the Children's Center giving state-subsidized day care to families earning more than $100,000 a year, meeting the state criteria for income and household size.  The Newstimes reports that the Office of Early Childhood believes he disclosed family-level personal information that is considered confidential.  The agency called on him to not post similar data.

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As classes get set to resume, officials urge pedestrian safety

Schools in the Greater Danbury area will be starting up again soon and that means children will be walking to school and waiting along the street at bus stops.  Kevin Borrup of the Injury Prevention Center says it's important for parents to have a heightened awareness around safety issues. 

 

The Center formed a partnership with the state Department of Transportation to improve safety for pedestrians.  They launched the "Watch For Me Connecticut" campaign to raise awareness among drivers. 

 

The number of pedestrians killed last year increased 11-percent nationwide.  In Connecticut 1,100 pedestrians are hit by cars each year. 

 

Borrup offered tips to pedestrians.  They including using sidewalks, crossing at intersections controlled by signals and walking facing traffic.  For drivers, he is reminding motorists to keep speeds under the limit in residential areas.

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Redding students propose 'Little Free Library' for Community Center

The Redding Board of Selectmen is backing an initiative proposed by second graders to install a ‘Little Free Library’ at the Redding Community Center. 

 

This project was part of the persuasive argument and writing curriculum.  The students drew  life-sized version and planned an opinion-based presentation to convince their classmates to vote for a particular presentation.

 

A Little Free Library, a worldwide organization, supports the construction of small, personally stocked neighborhood book exchanges.  Anyone cane take out a book, and replace it with one of their own. 

 

The small bookcase would be installed on a pedestal in the community center.  The students with the winning design raised money to help go toward materials.  Parents will help with construction.

 

The proposal was forwarded to the Redding Park and Recreation Commission and the Planning Commission.  The castle-shaped bookshelf would be stocked with books for siblings to read while waiting for sporting activities to conclude.  Parks and Rec officials say they want some more details from the class about the size of the proposed structure and the upkeep.

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Danbury zoners approve application for new animal control facility

The Danbury Zoning Commission has approved an application to add the use of "municipal animal control facility" to a certain area of the City.

 

$950,000 in bond money was approved by residents in November for construction of a new dog pound, which will help Danbury be in compliance with state standards.

 

Animal Control officials say a new facility is desperately needed. Several improvements were made to the City's current building to bring it up to date with state regulations, but the facility is still sub-standard to pounds of today. The building was constructed in the early 70's, is antiquated and in need of many major updates. 

 

The current facility doesn't have heat or air conditioning, and there's no room to quarantine animals if they're sick. A new building will give the City a humane area to hold dogs before they're adopted.

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Sandy Hook School project comes in under budget, surplus returns to the state

Newtown is sending $1.5 million back to the state as the Sandy Hook School rebuilding project officially closes out.  The Public Building and Site Commission recently determined that all expenditures for the newly opened school have been tallied.  Connecticut gifted $50 million to Newtown when the town determined that the best option to move forward was to tear down the site of the shooting and build a new facility on the same property.  Newtown officials say they were mindful of the generosity and were determined to be respectful with the resources.  They credit some of the savings to having very few change orders, deviations and additions because of the vast amount of planning that went into the design process.

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Danbury School District names 'Teacher of the Year'

The Danbury Public School District has named the 2017-18 Teacher of the Year.  Beth Manning is a science teacher at Westside Middle School Academy.  Manning started out as a pharmaceutical representative, tasked with training co-workers in technological changes. 

 

She earned her masters at Western Connecticut State University.  Manning was a student teacher at Danbury High School in 2001 and then started teaching at Rogers Park Middle School. 

 

Last year she was chosen by the Connecticut Science Teachers Association to receive the “Excellence in Middle School Science Teaching Award.” 

 

Manning says it's great that the district has embraced creativity in teaching the required curriculum.  New state science standards were adopted last year.  Manning said she accomplishes this by helping students – rather than telling them – find the answers through science-based questions.

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Bethel businessman plans to sue over crematorium decision

Attorneys for a Bethel businessman plan to file court papers next month about the Planning and Zoning Commission rejecting an application for a crematorium proposed for Clarke Business Park.  The Newstimes reports that Shawn McLoughlin's previous lawsuit against the town over the decision was rejected. 

 

The Commission approved the location of a crematorium in the business park the year before McLoughlin applied. 

 

Some businesses threatened to move if the application was approved.  His attorney argued that the Commission Chair was improperly influenced by that because she was running for First Selectman at the time.  The published report says that McLoughlin wanted Pat Rist to be forced to make a deposition about why she voted for the permitted use and then rejected the specific proposal. 

 

A judge denied the motion, saying they did not establish why Rist should be deposed.

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DOT signs off on Newtown bridge replacement design

The state Department of Transportation has approved the final design submission for Newtown’s proposed replacement of the Toddy Hill Road Bridge over Curtis Pond Brook.  the DOT also authorized Newtown to send the project out for bid. The $3.1 million project replaces a deficient bridge with a wider, longer span to improve hydraulic capacity as well as traffic operations. Construction is expected to begin this year.

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Danbury man crashed car into restaurant, fled on foot

A Danbury man is due in court today on charges stemming from a hit and run accident, and then a later disturbance in the lobby of the Danbury Police Station.  Officers responded to Division Street last Tuesday night on a report of a car hitting a building.  The driver, later determined to by 38-year old Calvin Ward, fled on foot.  

 

Witnesses provided a description of the driver to police, who eventually found him in their lobby. 

 

Ward called Brookfield Police after the accident to report his vehicle stolen. 

 

Danbury Police say Ward became belligerent yelling and swearing. He was charged with Breach of Peace, Interfering With Police Duties, Evading Responsibility, and Failure to Drive Right.  While being booked on those charges, officers found crack cocaine in his possession.  He was charged with possession and intent to sell. 

 

He was released on $25,000 bond.

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Lost hikers rescued from Tarrywile Park in Danbury

A family hiking in Tarrywile Park in Danbury last night got lost in the woods and were rescued by Danbury and Bethel firefighters.  A 15 year old called 911 around 8:45pm to say the family of 4 was lost.  Officials say the City has some of the most advanced technology available to first responders.

 

Using GPS mapping technology, firefighters were able to pinpoint their location and bring iPads to close the distance of a little over a mile away. 

 

Firefighters used the department's "Gator," an off road vehicle, and located the family within 30 minutes in the pitch black night.  The Bethel Fire Department responded with their Off Road Rescue vehicle to help bring the family out of the woods. 

 

The family was checked out by Danbury EMS and found to be uninjured and in good health.

 

The Danbury Fire Department is reminding hikers of some basic safety measures.  Always file a rough hiking plan with a friend, carry a fully charged cellphone, drinking water, and flashlight with fresh batteries in case it gets dark. If you find yourself lost or injured, stop moving, call 911 and give the dispatcher the nature of the problem.

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Man pleads guilty to federal charge in lethal overdose case

A Connecticut man has pleaded guilty to distributing heroin that caused the overdose death of a Monroe man.  34-year old Careem Bentley, also known as “C-Lows,” of Bridgeport, waived his right to indictment Monday.  Monroe Police responded to a home on November 23rd on a report of a drug overdose.  An unresponsive 37-year-old man was later pronounced dead.  Investigators seized the victim’s cellphone, multiple folds of suspected heroin, and other items, and determined that he purchased heroin from Bentley the night before.  Bentley was arrested in April and is currently jailed.  He will be sentenced in November.

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Bethel, Redding paving work to close roads

Bethel officials are cautioning drivers of a week long road closure.  Maple Avenue will be closed daily from 7am until 5pm from the intersection of Maple Avenue Extension and Plumtrees Road to Main Street.  The milling and paving project is starting this afternoon and will continue until Monday the 21st. 

 

Detours will be posted.  Officials are asking drivers, if possible, to plan a alternate route to avoid delays.  Bethel residents who live within the project area will continue to have access to their driveways.

 

The Redding Highway Department will start milling and paving Sanfordtown Road and Lonetown Road beginning tomorrow. This work will take about four weeks.

 

Redding residents should expect delays and road closures. Residents who live within the work zone will be able to access their property while the reconstruction is in progress, all others are urged to take alternate routes. 

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WWII Remembrance Ceremony in Danbury this morning

The Danbury Council of Veterans' World War II 72nd Anniversary & Remembrance Ceremony will be held this morning.

 

As part of the ceremony the names of the Danbury area Servicemen who died in WWII will be read aloud, as will the names of the approximately 75 Danbury area World War II veterans who died over the past year.  Also recognized at the ceremony will be any WWII veterans in attendance.

 

For the first time, the Catholic War Veterans will have a display of 60 large WWII photos.  Each will be accompanied by a description covering land battles, bombing raids, naval combat and beach invasions events in Europe, Sicily, north Africa, and the Pacific covering.  This display is more than 20 feet long with 100 square feet of photos.

 

The ceremony will take place at 10am at the Rose Garden on Memorial Drive.

 

The ceremony is organized by the Catholic War Veterans Post 1042. The Host Committee Members includes Commander Richard Raymond, and members Al Mead, Al Cutler, Tom Saadi and Mindo Rebeiro.

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Bethel official praises benefit effort held for fire victims

$6,000 was raised in Bethel on Friday night.  First Selectman Matt Knickerbocker says Friday's Bethel Cares benefit event was a huge success.  He noted that while attendees had a lot of fun, a lot of relief money was raised for the families displaced by a July fire on Greenwood Avenue. 

 

He thanked the Bethel and Stony Hill volunteer fire companies, the CERT volunteers, the bands that performed and others.  He also thanked volunteer fireman Ira Pollack and Fire Chief Scott Murphy for their help organizing the event.

 

Some of the food trucks that participate in Bethel's Food Truck Fridays had an off night and showed up, donating their profits.  Some donations are being collected through area churches so Knickerbocker says he's sure the $6,000 number will climb higher.

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Sen. Murphy walking across Conn., plans stops in Newtown, Danbury

Senator Chris Murphy is holding his second “Walk Across Connecticut”.  He began in  Killingly on Sunday morning and plans to walk 103 miles through 21 towns over five days.  He's holding a series of pop-up town halls along his route, including Wednesday in Newtown.  The event is planned for the Edmond Town Hall Gym at 6:30pm.  His last stop will be at noon in Danbury at Rogers Park.

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Ball Pond Advisory Committee considers weed removal tools

The Ball Pond Advisory Committee in New Fairfield is considering new methods to remove weeds from the water body.  At their most recent meeting, the group reviewed a purchase order that would allow for a quote to be obtained from New Milford-based C&D Underwater Maintenance. 

 

The company uses a tool called an Eco Harvester, which is similar to a drum roller that can tackle rooted weeds in shallow areas as well as deeper free-floating weeds. 

 

C&D Underwater Maintenance was set up as a vendor in the event the Ball Pond Advisory Committee decides to move forward in trying the Eco Harvester.

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Newtown High School auditorium renovation moving along

Almost all of the new seats for the Newtown High School auditorium have been put in place.  The Newtown Bee reports that the first phase of the project is expected to be completed by early next week.  The next phase, which includes lighting and work on the stage, should be completed around Thanksgiving.  The renovation project will also feature new carpeting and wheelchair accessibility.

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Bethel posts job ad for Public Utilities Director

Bethel is looking to hire a Public Utilities Director.  The job description was just posted to the town's website and says that the director will manage all aspects of the operations of municipal water and sewer utilities department, as well as plan and direct operations and maintenance of a system of water supply and the maintenance of sewers and repair of sewer facilities. 

 

The salary for a 40-hour work week will be between $90,000 to $100,000. 

 

MPA or MBA in engineering, environmental engineering or closely related field; four years’ experience in water and sewer systems; familiarity with related State DPH and DEEP regulations; three years of operational or plant maintenance supervisory experience; or, an equivalent combination of training and experience that provides ability to perform the job. 

 

Licenses required: Connecticut Motor Vehicle Operator’s License; Professional Engineer license strongly desired.

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Several vigils held in Connecticut after violent rally

Several vigils were held yesterday in Connecticut following violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, during a rally as white nationalists protested that city's decision to remove a Confederate monument.  Vigils in support of the victims were held in Danbury, West Hartford, Willimantic, Bridgeport, and New Haven. 

 

The Danbury-based Association of Religious Communities has issued a statement condemning the violence, bigotry and hate in Charlottesville.  The ARC Board of Directors says this is a nation of vitality because of diversity.  The group said everyone should feel safe to live, love, worship, and walk in the street without fear.

 

Connecticut leaders have condemned the violence at Saturday's rally. Governor Malloy says he is "disgusted by the violence incited and perpetrated in Charlottesville."

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Water main break reported in Danbury

There is a Water main break in Danbury.  The issue on Merrimac Street near Peace Street was reported shortly after 8am.  The Public Utilities Department says the repair is expected to take 4 to 6 hours.  Residents in the area are cautioned that they may experience discolored water, low water pressure, or no water during that time.  Once the break has been repaired and water service is restored, the city will flush hydrants in the area to alleviate any brown water.

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Brookfield anticipates state aid cuts, puts hiring freeze in place

Brookfield has instituted a hiring freeze of new municipal employees, with the exception of those positions that are for health and welfare, such as police officers.  The town is also going to have to look at across the board spending cuts as well.

 

The new education funding numbers released by Governor Dannel Malloy this month showed that the ECS grant to the town is zeroed out.  That's a loss of $1.5 million.

 

First Selectman Steve Dunn says the town does have some contingency fund money, but not enough to cover the amount the town may get cut.

 

Dunn says they have to prepare for that from now, in case funding doesn't change once a budget is approved by the General Assembly.  He added that it will be too late in December to do anything about the cuts.

 

He says Brookfield lost almost $600,000 in state funding last year.

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Car pulled from the water in Brookfield

A car has been removed from a pond in Brookfield.  Emergency responders received a report of the car in a pond off Route 25 in the area of High Meadow yesterday afternoon.  The driver was out of the vehicle, but appeared disoriented.  The Brookfield Police dive team and the Newtown Underwater Search and Rescue team responded.  Police did not have further updates about how the accident happened, or the status of the occupant.

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Esty asks for constituent input on health care reforms

The Problem Solvers Caucus has been meeting since January.  5th District Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty is part of the bipartisan group.  As various proposals came up and fell apart, the caucus started to look at what part of the health care challenge they could take on. 

 

She says more chaos is bad for Americans, bad for the insurance industry and leads to unpredictability for providers.

 

One is how to fix the individual market.  A bunch of ideas were put on the table just before lawmakers went on August recess.  While at home in the District, Esty wants to hear from constituents about what should be done about health care.  

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Officials identify people involved in New Milford plane crash

Officials have identified the people involved in a small plane crash in New Milford Friday. The plane went down around 9:45am at the end of Runway 17-35 at Candlelight Farms Airport. 

 

The plane was being flown by a juvenile female student pilot.  Police say the student pilot sustained critical injuries. She was extricated from the plane and flown by LifeStar to Hartford Hospital. 

 

The Cessna C-172 left from Danbury Municipal Airport.  It's registered to flight school Arrow Aviation.  The flight instructor was identified as 57-year-old Anthony Morasco of New Milford. Police say he was killed in the crash and pronounced dead at the scene.   

 

The rear seat passenger was identified as 44-year-old Peter Jellen, of New York. He of was seriously injured, but able to walk out of the wreckage to a nearby home where asked residents to call 911.  Jellen was transported to Danbury Hospital.  

 

The FAA will investigate and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the probable cause of the accident.

 

On July 30, another small plane owned by Arrow lost altitude while taking off from the Danbury Airport. The 63-year-old pilot, Mark Stern, died.  Two others on board were injured.

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Newtown man arrested for alleged theft from restaurant

A Newtown man has been arrested for allegedly stealing money from a local restaurant.  The Newtown Bee reports that 47-year old Mark Manley was charged Wednesday with burglary and larceny for the weekend incident.  Police received a call from King's Restaurant Saturday saying that someone illegally entered the building and stole a money bag with 67-dollars in change.  Surveillance photos led police to Manley.  He was released on bail for an August 23rd court appearance.

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Bethel Police host 'Coffee with a Cop' event at Reynolds Ridge

Members of the Bethel Police Department spent Tuesday morning with residents of Reynolds Ridge during a Coffee with a Cop event.  The complex provides housing for the low income elderly and self-sufficient persons of disability.  Officers met members of the community and answered questions they had about various law enforcement topics.

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Brookfield firefighters extinguish nearby basement, car fires

Brookfield Volunteer Fire Company says all line officers were at headquarters on Wednesday for their monthly meeting, adding to a quick response to a report of smoke in a Candlewood Lake Road home.  The fire was located in the area of the clothes dryer in the basement.  While at the scene, a car fire was reported about half a mile south on Candlewood Lake Road. A Brookfield Police Officer with a fire extinguisher, and later on the crew from Germantown, were able to extinguish the flames.

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Danbury Police try to cheer up young man whose father passed away

A Danbury Police Sgt is being touted by the Department for the time to make a difference in the life of a young man whose father recently passed away.  Sgt Casazza came to know Brandon Shafer and discovered that he and his father both shared a love of the New York Mets.  Acknowledging that nothing can replace the loss of a parent at a young age, officers arranged a trip to Citi Field last weekend to help put a smile on Brandon's face.

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One person killed in small plane crash in New Milford

The FAA reports that a small plane has crash in New Milford. The plane went down around 9:45am at the end of Runway 17-35 at Candlelight Farms Airport. Three people were on board at the time.

Emergency responders are on scene on Green Pond Road.

Police say the man who died was an instructor, a female who was onboard has critical injuries and was flown by LifeStar to Hartford Hospital. A man who was in the back seat was also injured, got out of the plane and walked 300 to 400 yards to a house and asked the residents to call 911.

Sherman Volunteer Fire is providing mutual aid.

The Cessna C-172 left from Danbury Municipal Airport.  It's registered to flight school Arrow Aviation

The FAA will investigate and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the probable cause of the accident.

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Danbury man charged with manslaughter in fatal 2016 crash

A Danbury man has been arrested on a manslaughter charge stemming from a high-speed police chase in December in which a woman was killed. 33-year old Ricardo Andre was arrested by State Police yesterday and also charged with operating with a suspended license, operating under the influence and reckless endangerment. 

 

Andre was ordered held on $750,000 bond.

 

The incident unfolded on Mountainville Road and a passenger in the suspect vehicle was ejected from the SUV, later dying of injuries sustained in the crash.  Andre was wanted on several warrants and arrested when he was released from the hospital.

 

A former Danbury Police Officer, 39-year old Jamie Hodge, was charged last week with reckless driving.  Hodge resigned form the department earlier this year. He had only been with the Danbury Department for about a year.

Hodge was off duty December 1st, working traffic control at a construction site on Center Street when he saw a vehicle with no rear license plate.  He suspected it to be stolen, having recognized the driver from previous police encounters.

Hodge followed in his own car and sped after Andre. Andre later told police he was high on cocaine and had only just met 26-year old Tiffany Fitzgerald that day at the crack house.

Hodge is due in Waterbury Superior Court on August 22. 

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Pawling man arrested for aggravated vehicular homicide for 2015 crash

A Pawling man has been arrested for a fatal 2015 crash on Route 22.  44-year old Christopher Osborne Jr turned himself in to New York State Police on Monday on charges including Aggravated Vehicular Homicide. 

 

The accident happened April 29, 2015 near Route 311.  Osborne's pick-up truck crossed the center lines and hit a vehicle travelling in the opposite direction head-on. 

 

A passenger in that car, 63-year-old Jean Riccobon, of Carmel, was pronounced dead at the scene.  The driver, Mario Riccobon, then age 65, of Carmel, was transported to Danbury Hospital with serious injuries. 

 

A blood test determined that Osborne had been under the influence of Morphine at the time of the collision. 

 

Osborne was arraigned and ordered held at Putnam County Jail on $100,000 bond.  He was also charged with Aggravated Criminally Negligent Homicide, Manslaughter in the 2nd Degree, Aggravated Vehicular Assault, Vehicular Assault in the 1st Degree, Vehicular Manslaughter in the 2nd Degree, Assault in the 2nd Degree, and Vehicular Assault in the 2nd Degree, all Felonies.

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Boughton released from hospital following brain surgery

DANBURY, Conn. (AP) A Connecticut mayor and likely Republican candidate for governor has been released from the hospital after having surgery to remove a benign cyst in his brain.

Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton tweeted Thursday that he was leaving the Pittsburgh hospital where he underwent a seven-hour surgery on Tuesday.

 

 

He told the News-Times he plans to stay in Pittsburgh until next week, when he will have his stitches removed.

The epidermoid cyst was discovered during recent tests after Boughton suffered dizzy spells and headaches. He says the cyst was about the size of a lemon.

The 53-year-old Boughton is one of several people who have formed exploratory committees for a potential run for governor in 2018. Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy is not seeking a third term.

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Benefit being held tonight in Bethel for victims of Greenwood Ave fire

A benefit is being held in Bethel tonight for the victims of the fire that happened last month on Greenwood Avenue.  The benefit at the municipal center is from 7pm-11pm. It's sponsored in part by the Bethel Fire Department and Bethel Cares. 

 

A $20 donation is requested, with all of the money going to the displaced families.  Concessions will be available for sale, with that money also being donated.

 

Volunteer firefighter Ira Pollack says three bands will be playing.  Fire trucks and equipment will be on site, there will be activities for kids and bands preforming.

 

The apartment building on Greenwood Avenue was built more than 170 years ago.  Ten adults and five children have been displaced. Some businesses on the ground floor also sustained smoke and water damage.  At least one resident and two firefighters were transported to the hospital with minor injuries.

 

Police were the first on the scene and ran into the building to alert residents.  About 100 firefighters responded and took 20 minutes breaks because the fire was so intense and it was a humid morning.  Dozens of fire trucks responded from the Greater Danbury area. 

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Redding First Selectman cross endorsed by GOP fore reelection

Redding First Selectman Julia Pemberton, a Democrat, has been cross endorsed by the Redding Republican Town Committee.  In announcing the endorsement, RTC Chair Michael Thompson said Pemberton has done a good job and that the endorsement reflects the group's confidence that she will continue to work for all of Redding's citizens.  Thompson noted that the town is headed into a difficult fiscal year made more challenging by the lack of a state budget.

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Number of ticks submitted to state facility for Lyme Disease testing surges

With a mild winter and a large population of mice, officials at the state Agricultural Experiment Station were expecting large numbers of Lyme Disease-infected ticks this summer.  Director Theodore Andreadis says they were right.

 

They are seeing a 7 to 8 percent increase than in the past of higher levels of pathogens.  Andreadis says an astronomical number of ticks are coming into their lab for testing.  Since February, over 5,000 ticks have been submitted for testing. 

 

Danbury residents have submitted 33 ticks to the City Health Department for Lyme Disease testing since the service began in April.  Results from the state Agricultural Experiment Station are communicated, in writing, to the submitter.  There is a $5 fee to defray the administrative cost of the program. 

 

Usually during a course of a year, they test 3,000 ticks.  Andreadis says the increase was seen throughout the Northeast.  He's calling it a regional phenomenon.  Andreadis says the primary focus has been controlling ticks and preventing infections.  The program started 20 years ago.  It's been enhanced over the past two years.

 

The Agricultural Experiment Station doesn't currently charge a fee, but Danbury officials cautioned that that may change because of the state's fiscal problems. 

 

The facility receives funding from the CDC and USDA, but Andreadis says they need more funding to prevent more people from becoming infected.

 

City Health Director Lisa Michelle Morrissey says this is mostly for peace of mind for the resident, not necessarily to track where the tick was found to put up warnings.

 

The Tick-Borne Disease Prevention Laboratory at West Conn reported in May that its weekly sampling for deer ticks reached the highest population level recorded since the lab initiated field monitoring in 2011.  During the last week of May, field samples collected on average 303 percent more deer ticks than in the same week in 2016.  Over a longer timeframe, the record deer tick numbers in the final week of May showed a dramatic surge of 1,021 percent from the comparable week in 2014.

 

The West Conn lab has monitored deer tick populations on a weekly basis at sites in Danbury, Ridgefield and Newtown from May through August every year since 2011.

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Brookfield adopts new law about signs

A new law about signage in part of Brookfield has been approved.  The ordinance was prompted by the revitalization of the Four Corners area.  Brookfield officials say it will control the size and construction of signs that businesses can place in order to maintain a New England-style feel.  Smaller and lower signs, not to be placed on sidewalks will also have restricted lighting options.

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Caregiver receives 3 years in prison for theft from patient

LITCHEFIELD, Conn. (AP) -- A Connecticut nurse's aide has been sentenced to three years in prison for stealing at least $100,000 from a 72-year-old woman in her care.

 

Candy Sutay did not comment on the decision when she was sentenced Wednesday in Superior Court in Litchfield. The Republican-American reports  that the 46-year-old Sutay was a certified nurse's aide and was hired as caregiver by the victim whom she had known for years.

 

The prosecutor described the theft as an act of betrayal, saying Sutay stole silver cutlery and jewelry while living with the victim in the Town of Washington.

 

Sutay was also ordered to pay more than $25,000 in restitution during her three years of probation after her release from prison. She was arrested a year ago and will receive credit for time served.

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Artist and designer Alan Peckolick dead at age 76

NEW YORK (AP) -- Alan Peckolick, an innovative painter and graphic designer whose creations included the bold, underlined logo for General Motors and typefaces for Pfizer and Revlon, has died.

 

Peckolick's widow, Jessica Weber, told The Associated Press that he died Aug. 3 at a hospital in Danbury, Connecticut. He was 76 and died from complications from head trauma suffered in a fall.

 

After struggling through art school at Pratt Institute, Peckolick became a protege of graphic designer Herb Lubalin and absorbed the styles of such artists as George Lois and Saul Bass. Besides his work for GM and other corporate clients, he also designed a widely admired poster announcing free, late-night museum openings in New York and covers for several books. His own book, "Teaching Type to Talk," was published in 2013.

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FedEx deliveryman allegedly assaults clothing store emplyee

A clothing store employee was injured yesterday in Danbury after a fight with a Fed Ex deliveryman.  Police say 24-year old Javon Willis has delivered goods to Jos A Bank in the past, and the store has had issues with the way he handled the merchandise.  Staff called his manager yesterday after another alleged incident.  Willis returned to the retailer and got into a physical fight with an employee, who sustained minor injuries.  He was charged with assault and breach of peace.  Willis was released on bond for an August 22nd court appearance.

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State park swim area closed due to blue green algae

The swim area at Kettletown State Park in Southbury is closed due to blue-green algae blooms. The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection alerted swimmers last week to stay away from the greenish patches on the surface of the water.

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Family displaced by fire in Brookfield

Brookfield firefighters extinguished a blaze at a Candlewood Lake Road home last night.  The basement fire was brought under control in a short amount of time.  A couple and their young child were displaced by the blaze because of heavy smoke damage to the house. 

 

The cause of the fire is under investigation by the Brookfield Fire Marshal. 

 

Candlewood Lake Road from Federal Road to Rocky Road was closed for a period of time due to the Fire Department activity.  Mutual aid was provided by Stony Hill Volunteer Fire Company, Hawleyville Volunteer Fire Company, and Germantown Volunteer Fire.

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Weather delays road construction projects in Ridgefield, Newtown

A planned road closure in Ridgefield this weekend has been postponed.  The state Department of Transportation is replacing a bridge along route 7.  The company making the new bridge abutments was delayed due to weather.  Route 7 will be closed August 18 through 20th, and then August 25th through 27th.  During the closures, traffic will be detoured onto Routes 102 and 35.

 

The Hundred Acres Road project in Newtown has been expanded.  The road will be closed until at least the 18th for the culvert replacement project.  Hundred Acres Road is closed between Hatterown Road and Phyllis Lane. Weather has delayed the work.

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Police investigating death of teen

Danbury Police are investigating the death of an 18-year old.  The Newstimes reports that Gabe Bardo was found unconscious next to his car Saturday night.  The windshield was smashed, from the outside.  Bardo was pronounced dead on Monday.  The teen reportedly didn't show signs of external injuries and may have had bleeding on his brain.  The state Medical Examiner's Office is continuing an investigation.

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Danbury Democrats extend well wishes to Boughton after surgery

The Danbury Democratic Town Committee is reaching across the aisle offering their best wishes to 8-term Republican Mayor Mark Boughton as he recovers from a surgery to remove a cyst from his brain.  DTC Chairman Gene Eriquez says Danbury remains a place where people have grown up together and have made friendships.  He added that life is too precious to allow political differences to interfere with relationships, kindness and compassion.  Eriquez, a former Mayor, says their thoughts are with Boughton and they look forward to his speedy and successful recovery.

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Hoarding situation at Danbury house resolved

The Danbury Unified Neighborhood Inspection Team helped resolve a hoarding issue at a Meadowbrook Road home.  In a report to the City Council last week, UNIT said a man contacted them concerned for his 90-year old mother's well being, noting that his sister was a hoarder. 

 

The house was reportedly messy, unsanitary and was routinely treated for rodents. 

 

UNIT brought in the Welfare Department and opted not to threaten fines in order to resolve the matter.  The elderly woman moved in with her son until her house could be professionally cleaned. 

 

Garbage was thrown out, furniture discarded and the carpets replaced .  It was revealed that over a six month period, 80 rats were removed by the extermination company. 

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UNIT takes Danbury resident to court over blighted property

The Danbury Unified Neighborhood Inspection Team has taken a homeowner to court over years of violations.  In a report to the City Council last week, UNIT said a Gregory Street property has been blighted with high grass, piles of rubbish and unregistered/inoperable vehicles in the yard. 

 

UNIT tried working with the property owner, but neighbors became frustrated with the deteriorating conditions. 

 

Written orders and fine assessments didn't work and conditions worsened last year.  That prompted UNIT to take legal action. 

 

After three court dates, the judge ruled in favor of UNIT that the owner must clean up the Gregory Street property.  The owner is facing daily fines until he complies.  Another court date was held at the end of July to address the next steps.

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STEM Advisory Board meeting held in Danbury

A science, technology, engineering, and math Advisory Board meeting was held in Danbury Monday, led by 5th District Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty.  The STEM Advisory Board meeting was held at Belimo.  Esty first convened the panel in 2015 to bring together leaders in the science, technology, engineering, and math fields from across Connecticut to address the challenges facing STEM industries.  The Board is tasked with developing strategies to prepare students for STEM careers.

 

At Monday’s meeting, Esty presented a legislative update on her work on STEM education and opportunities. Board members updated Esty on the progress made in their working groups, and outlined goals for their next meeting.

 

Esty says there's a lot of commonality among companies worried about having educated workers in the future.  Educators say more needs to be invested in technical high schools and community colleges to prepare the future workforce.

 

Among other students, educators, and business leaders, members of the advisory board include Dantaya Williams, Vice President of Human Resources at United Technologies; Tracy Ariel, Director of Advanced Manufacturing and Early Colleague Opportunities for Connecticut State Colleges and Universities; Jason Teal, Chairman of CT NAACP Economic Development; Melanie Sinche, Director of Education at Jackson Laboratory; Patrice Gans, Founder and Executive Director of Random Hacks of Kindness Junior, Inc.; and Catherine Lasser, former Vice President at IBM.

 

Belimo opened its North American headquarters in Danbury in 1998.  The company moved to its current space in 2014, and specializes in heating, insulation, ventilation, and air-conditioning systems.  Following the meeting, Esty toured the new facility and viewed their latest sustainability efforts.

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Danbury field to be renamed to honor Thomas 'Moose' Lynch

A softball field in Danbury will be renamed for a former firefighter who died unexpectedly in April.  Last week, the City Council approved changing the name of a Rogers Park field in memory of Thomas "Moose" Lynch.  Field #2 will be dedicated to Lynch. 

 

He served with the Danbury Fire Department for 30 years before retiring in 2008.  Lynch was an avid softball player and involved with local and national leagues.  He is a member of the Connecticut softball Hall of Fame.  Lynch served as an umpire until his unexpected passing. 

 

Parks and Rec Director Nick Kaplanis was approached by the local league about renaming the field in Lynch's memory.  He says this is a wonderful tribute to a lifelong Danbury resident who gave so much back to the City. 

 

The field will be dedicated next month.

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