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Local News

Zoning Blamed on West Side Career Academy Delays

Zoning rules in Danbury have been slightly adjusted in order to accommodate west side career academy. The problems began when permission was granted to rezone the 24-acre site from industrial to residential, in order to permit the school. That led to the need for a variance for building height from 52 to 55 feet. Then there was another issue… Zoning only allowed a three story building, but they are dealing with a four story building. Finally, the setback for a residential zone is 50 feet, but they only had 38 feet as a pre-existing condition.

Gas Appliances Now in the Crosshairs Here in Connecticut

Well, here we go… a bill under consideration in the Connecticut General Assembly… if it becomes law… would set new emissions standards for natural gas stoves and appliances. It would also set up a fund to aid in the replacement of all gas appliances, and that could get costly as roughly 30% of homes in Connecticut have a natural gas appliance, according to some estimates. The bill comes along at the same time as the US Consumer Product Safety Commission is considering a total ban on gas stoves. State leaders behind the bill however, insist it’s not related to the recent, national hysteria about gas stoves.

Crash Renews Calls for Better Lighting in New Milford

Another crash on Route 7 in New Milford has led to renewed calls for an increase in street lighting from the area near New Milford High School to Veterans Bridge… an area that many say is way too dark. It’s not the first such accident along that stretch of road. There have been many. Now, local officials are asking the Connecticut Department of Transportation to put up lighting along that whole area, where police say there were more than 230 crashes just last year.

Newtown Looking to Fill Position, But There Are Some Restrictions

Efforts are underway in Newtown to fill an opening on the Bike & Trails Committee, but the position is only available to a Democrat or unaffiliated voter. If you fit that category, you need to submit your resume by February 10th. Letters of interest and resumes can submitted at… and more information can be found online at…

Former Student Sentenced in Sex Assault Case Facing More Charges

A former student at the University of Connecticut has been sentenced to ten years in prison for sexually assaulting an underage girl. 23 year old Leonardo Villanes-Medina was also served with a new arrest warrant Tuesday, after police say he met up with another minor last summer and sent her sexual text messages. Villanes-Medina will only have to serve four months in prison followed by 10 years of probation after pleading guilty last fall to second-degree sexual assault in the case dating back to 2018 and involving a 14-year-old girl. The new charges resulted in him being held on a $100,000 bond.

One Connecticut Road Said to Be the Most Congested in the Country

According to a recent report by a transportation data company, one road in Connecticut tops the list of the 25 most congested highways in the entire nation. The report from INRIX, says drivers along the stretch of I-95 South between Westport and Greenwich, typically lose a half hour each day sitting in stalled traffic during rush hour. That added up to 138 hours for the typical commuter last year.

School Administrators Targeted in Brookfield

In Brookfield, a petition is circulating that calls for the removal of two administrators of the special education department. The timing matches a full program review of that department which has now been approved by the school board. According to the online petition that as of the end of the day yesterday had 148 signatures, the parents and families of Brookfield students no longer have confidence in the abilities of the Special Education Director or the Special Education Pre-K-to-Grade 5 Supervisor.

Danbury Traffic Light Upgrades Aimed at Easing Gridlock

Traffic congestion in Danbury may be eased with the installation of ‘adaptive’ traffic signals, and the cost to do it is being covered by a $6.6 million grant. The plan calls for a network of traffic signals throughout the city, all linked by fiber optics that can react in real time to smooth traffic flow… the latest technology in traffic control. It allows for timing adjustments to green signals to match traffic conditions at any particular time.

Delinquent Renters Get Helping Hand

The Connecticut Department of Housing is launching a new fund to assist renters who are on the verge of being evicted from their homes due to owing past due rent. Utilizing $12.5 million in funding from UniteCT and the Rent Bank, the Eviction Prevention Fund will provide households with up to $5,000 to pay off past due rent with their current landlord. To apply, tenants must first be screened for eligibility. Eligible applicants will then receive direct assistance from a local UniteCT Resource Center.

Danbury to Celebrate Glover Teixeira

Danbury Mayor Dean Esposito has announced an event celebrating the career of Glover Teixeira and his commitment to the City of Danbury. The celebration will take place on Sunday, February 26th from 3 to 5pm at the Portuguese Cultural Center… 65 Sand Pit Road in Danbury. This event will be free and open to the public.