Danbury is looking to take steps to manage runoff from properties around Candlewood Lake. Mayor Mark Boughton says he will be working with the Zoning Department this fall and spring about what can be done to protect the watershed.
But he says the challenge over the next few years will be to develop a long term strategic plan for all five towns to follow.
There have been at least three studies done about water quality. Lake owner First Light Power completed one earlier this month, the five towns that surround the lake also commissioned a study and the Candlewood Lake Authority did as well.
Boughton says one of the things identified in all of them, was a general decline in water quality over the last 30 to 40 years. The other issue identified was an increase in Eurasian Milfoil. The Lake Authority has applied to the state for a grant to stock grass carp in the lake to decrease the invasive plant.
The state has released more detailed plans about how two area towns plan to use grant funding from the Department of Housing to improve their downtown areas.
Applications from Bethel and Wilton were among the 13 accepted. Commissioner Yvonne Kline says Bethel will use it's grant for phase one of two in a Commercial Center Improvement Plan. It includes creation of a community gathering green space area to help the commercial center thrive.
Kline says Wilton will use grant funding to make the downtown area more pedestrian friendly, and to reduce traffic speed along the main roads.
There were 33 applications submitted for grants and only 13 awarded. Kline says the program has a 15 million dollar fund to grant to municipalities to attract small businesses, grow jobs and improve accessibility.
The Ridgefield Board of Selectmen is holding a special meeting tomorrow.
The regularly scheduled Board meeting last Wednesday was cancelled. To avoid conflict with the start of Rosh Hashanah on Wednesday night, the meeting will be held on a Tuesday.
Among the items the Selectmen will be discussing is the bid results for 10 acres of the Schlumberger site. Another request for proposals went out to buyers for the parcel that voters previously rejected a $4 million sale for. Toll Brothers proposed building 30 luxury condos on the site, but there was a strong coalition of support for affordable housing.
Some residents also spoke out in favor of a more comprehensive plan for the entire 45 acre property.
A 21-year old who turned her self in to police on 7 outstanding warrants will be in court today.
Tori Alvarez of Danbury was wanted by police in Wilton, Danbury and Weston on various charges, most of the warrants were about failure to appear in court. She was arrested August 27th when she went to the police station. Alvarez will be in Danbury Superior Court on Monday to answer some charges. One of the warrants stemmed from a November 2012 accident involving damage and injury, but Alvarez had fled the scene.
She was also in Norwalk Superior Court last week on charges that she robbed a Wilton home in 2013. That case was continued to October 29th.
October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month and The Women’s Center will hold its 8th annual 4k “SafeWalk”. The SafeWalk event is aimed at raising funds to support the Women's Center and to also raise awareness in the community about their services.
The Ridgefield High School Tigers football players have joined Fairfield County Bank's 2014 “Strength in Numbers” team for the walk. The Women's Center says RHS Coach Kevin Callahan declared it mandatory that all freshman, junior varsity and varsity team members participate in this year’s event. The players are planning to wear their orange jerseys at the Walk, while several of their mothers, who have also committed to attend, will wear their sons’ black jerseys for the morning.
In addition to the Walk, the event will feature a memorial tribute to honor victims of domestic violence in the community. The event is Sunday October 5th inside the Danbury Fair mall.
DENVER (AP) — A Pueblo County commission candidate said an article posted on Facebook saying the Newtown shootings were a hoax said his remarks were misunderstood.
The Denver Post reported Saturday that Tom Ready apologized for hurting those affected by the December 2012 shootings in Connecticut.
The article posted by Ready claimed the shootings were a hoax intended to drum up support for tougher gun control laws. Ready told the Post he simply "pushed a button" to link the article to his page to encourage discussion.
Ready said he didn't do a good job Wednesday during a debate where he defended posting the article.
Ready's remarks went viral on the Internet.
NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) Former Governro John Rowland, who resigned from office a decade ago in a corruption scandal, was convicted Friday of federal charges that he conspired to hide payment for work on two congressional campaigns.
Rowland, once a rising star for the Republican Party, served 10 months in prison for taking illegal gifts while in office and now as a repeat offender faces the possibility of a much stiffer sentence.
The government's case centered around a contract between Rowland and a nursing home chain owned by the husband of 2012 congressional candidate Lisa Wilson-Foley. Rowland's attorneys argued he volunteered for the campaign while receiving $35,000 to consult for her husband's company, but prosecutors said the money was an illegal payment for campaign services.
Rowland was convicted in New Haven federal court of all seven counts, including conspiracy, falsifying records in a federal investigation, causing false statements to be made to the Federal Election Commission and causing illegal campaign contributions.
Rowland was elected to the U.S. House three times, governor three times and served as chairman of the national Republican Governors Association. He had been mentioned as a possible vice presidential candidate or cabinet member before he was impeached and resigned.
He was released from prison in 2006 and began rebuilding his life, landing a job as an economic development coordinator before becoming host of a popular radio show. In his first interview after leaving prison, the man known for his charm and quick wit said he had faith God would steer him down a different path.
"When you lose your freedom, it's a very humbling experience," he said.
But he found himself in the crosshairs of federal investigators once again as he pursued a return to politics.
Much of the evidence against Rowland came from email correspondence, such as one in which he wrote to Wilson-Foley's husband, Brian Foley, shortly after proposing he become a paid political consultant for his wife. Foley testified during the trial that Wilson-Foley wanted Rowland's help but for her primary campaign believed his involvement, if made public, would attract negative publicity.
"Had a brief chat with Lisa. I get it. Let's you and I meet," Rowland wrote to Foley.
In March, the Foleys each pleaded guilty to conspiring to make illegal campaign contributions, a misdemeanor. Brian Foley became the government's star witness, testifying that he paid Rowland for campaign work and the work he did for Foley's company, Apple Health Care Inc., was only cursory.
Rowland's lawyers attacked Foley's credibility, showing he illegally funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars to his wife's campaign and could have faced significant prison time if he had not cut a deal. They argue the former governor was unaware of any conspiracy to keep Rowland happy in his campaign work by paying him through Apple.
Rowland did not testify in his own defense and his lawyers presented one witness, Apple executive Brian Bedard, who testified that Rowland did real work for him and he did not believe the contract was a sham.
Rowland was also accused of trying to cut a similar business deal with another politician.
Mark Greenberg, a Republican who is again running for Congress this year, testified that Rowland proposed becoming a consultant to his 2010 campaign while being paid as though he was working for the candidate's animal rescue organization. Greenberg said he turned down the proposal from Rowland. Rowland's lawyers argued that he never ended up working for Greenberg and no crime was committed.
Convictions on all the charges carried a possible maximum prison sentence of 57 years.
Western Connecticut State University has reopened four buildings on the midtown campus. They were evacuated Friday afternoon when University spokesman Paul Steinmetz says an email was sent to their webmaster that said there were bombs in four buildings.
University Hall, the student center, Newbury residence Hall and Haas Library were evacuated and locked down. State Police were called in and sent police dogs to search the buildings.
Steinmetz says the email had all of the earmarks of a hoax. He says that's because it came from a suspect email address, TOR.com was the tag. He was told that it's something criminal elements use. It's based out of a foreign country and criminals use it to disguise themselves because it's hard to track down the origins. The FBI, Homeland Security and State Police were all in contact with the University Police Department.
Students evacuated from the dorm were sent to Litchfield residence Hall, which is part of the University's emergency plans. Steinmetz says if had to, they could move everyone over to the west side campus.
WCSU sent out a notification through their internal system to all students and staff.
New Fairfield Day is Saturday. It's a day long celebration that includes everything from Amber Alert registration to firefighter demonstrations and a parade.
First Selectman Susan Chapman says the day is going to start with the naming of a street to honor two local heroes who died in the War on Terror. The Lion's Club will then hold their make up of the 4th of July Parade, which was cancelled on Independence Day this year.
The Boy Scouts will hold a demonstration, the New Fairfield Land Trust will show off their new walking trail and police will have a car seat safety discussion. There will be a search & rescue dog demonstration, vehicle extrication demonstrations and a fire extinguishing display.
Danbury has signed on to an effort by the Candlewood Lake Authority to run a grass carp program design to control and manage Eurasian Milfoil. The CLA is applying to the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection for a grant to pay for half of the program. Mayor Mark Boughton says the group plans to raise funds from community organizations for the balance.
The grass carp program has worked in other water bodies including nearby Ball Pond, Lake George and other water bodies.
The CLA hopes to stock grass carp in the lake this spring. It could also help with a new, similar invasive species that's shown up in the lake, but grows on the top of the lake.
CLA has permission from First Light, the owners of the lake, but they still need a permit from DEEP.
ST. LOUIS (AP) St. Louis-based Nestle Purina PetCare Co. is expanding its lawsuit against Blue Buffalo Co. to include additional allegations of false advertising.
The two companies sued each other in May. Purina accused its Wilton, Connecticut-based competitor of lying about its use of natural ingredients in dog food. The counterclaim accused Purina of some of the same deceits, as well as defamation.
Late Thursday, Purina expanded its lawsuit. Among other things, it claims that Blue Buffalo lies about the nutritional value of a pet treat product, and about the absorption abilities of one of its cat litters.
Blue Buffalo responded Friday with a written statement that questions the qualifications of a Purina scientific expert and further denies any wrongdoing.
WASHINGTON (AP) Michelle Obama has introduced the newest class of National Student Poets.
The five 15- to 18-year-olds will promote the reading, writing and appreciation of poetry during a year of service as literary ambassadors, particularly among young people.
Each student read original poems for the first lady and guests Thursday at the White House.
Mrs. Obama says the program was created to nurture the passion and creativity of young people while sharing the ``gifts and wonders'' of poetry.
She says Thursday's event celebrates the students' journey through endless drafts and writer's block.
The students are 15-year-old Ashley Gong of Sandy Hook, Connecticut; 16-year-old Weston Clark of Zionsville, Indiana; 18-year-old Madeleine Lecesne of New Orleans; 17-year-old Cameron Messinides (meh-SIN'-neh-dees) of Camden, South Carolina; and 17-year-old Julia Falkner of Louisville, Colorado.
A 21-year old who turned her self in to police on 7 outstanding warrants has had her court case continued. Tori Alvarez of Danbury was wanted by police in Wilton, Danbury and Weston on various charges, most of the warrants were about failure to appear in court. She was arrested August 27th an returned to court Wednesday.
Some of the charges stem from a January 2013 theft from a home. The woman reportedly had a relationship with someone who lived in the Olmstead Hill Road home and knew it would be empty. Her case has been continued in Norwalk Superior Court to October 29th.
Alvarez will be in Danbury Superior Court on Monday to answer other charges.
A funeral mass has been held for longtime WLAD broadcaster, Danbury Racearena announcer and author, Paul Baker. Baker was the morning announcer and sportscaster on WLAD from the station's sign on in 1947 through 1977. He passed away Saturday at the age of 94.
Baker's two children, Joe and Paula, longtime friend Andy Montanari of Ridgefield and former Danbury High School football coach Gus Edwards delivered eulogies to the standing-room only assembly at St Terea's in Woodbury yesterday. An avid golfer, Baker was a regular emcee at community events throughout his life.
Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton said everyone who grew up attending sports events, listening to the radio or going to the Racearena knew who Paul was. He said today was like a little bit of Danbury passing, a day of sorrow for his loved ones. Boughton called him someone who knew how to live life the way we all want to live life, routinely golfing his age through his 80s.
WLAD's current General Manager Irv Goldstein, who grew up in Danbury, said school was never really officially canceled on snowy mornings until Paul and Abe announced it on WLAD.
Baker remained active until his last few months through writing, charitable work and his church.
A bank robbery in Danbury is being investigated. The Union Savings Bank branch at 226 Main Street was held up shortly before 10:30 this morning. The suspect was described as a dark skinned male, approximately 5 foot 10 with a husky build. The suspect was wearing a light hooded sweatshirt and dark colored pants.
The man handed the teller a note and left in an unknown direction. No weapon was displayed and the suspect left with an undetermined amount of money. There were no reported injuries.
Any witness's are asked to contact the Detective Bureau at 203-797-4662.
The Unified Neighborhood Inspection Team spent time last month dealing with issues of blighted properties that had garbage or debris in the yards, or high grass. UNIT officials say in most of the cases the homes are vacant and many times, foreclosed. The UNIT issued several Exterior Blight Orders to property owners for issues ranging from unregistered vehicles to front lawn parking and other violations.
The Department says by addressing these issues, the properties become less of a target for break-ins and criminal mischief.
There were 34 blighted properties addressed, 14 with notices of violation and six cited for illegal apartments/overcrowding and unpermitted construction.
Year to date, UNIT has address more than 600 quality of life issues.
A bridge replacement project starts Friday in Bethel.
Route 58 will be closed between Hoyts Hill Road and Sara's Way starting on Friday the 19th and continuing through the following Tuesday. State Department of Transportation officials say the bridge over Putnam Brook will be removed, including the stone masonry culvert. A precast concrete box culvert will be installed. New drainage and pavement will also be put in place during the project.
Traffic through Bethel will be detoured from Milwaukee Avenue onto Grassy Plain Street/Redding Road to Hill Road/Lonetown Road and back onto Putnam Park Road. Detour signs will be put in place.
Connecticut has one confirmed case, so far, of the enterovirus D68 infection. The child was recently hospitalized , has since improved and been discharged. The child was reportedly at at Yale-New Haven Hospital, though health officials haven't officially released that information. Five hospitals in total, including Danbury Hospital, have sent specimens to the CDC for testing.
Dr Matthew Carter of the Connecticut Department of Public Health says they could hear back as soon as this week, but more likely next week.
The virus can cause mild to severe illness, with the worst cases needing life support for breathing difficulties.
New York and New Jersey are among the other 16 states with confirmed cases. Kids with asthma have been especially vulnerable. No deaths have been reported.
The strain is not new but only a small number of labs can test for it. Since mid-August, there's been an unusual spike in identified cases. Investigators say it's not yet clear what triggered the outbreak or whether it's worsening.
The Redding Board of Selectmen has set a date for a special town meeting about the ordinance to merge the Housatonic Valley Council of Elected Officials and the South Western Regional Planning Agency into the Western Connecticut Council of Governments. The Special Town Meeting will be held on October 10th at 7pm in Redding Town Hall.
The state passed an initiative calling for the 13 planning agencies in the state to merge into no more than eight. Connecticut officials are hoping for more regionalization efforts when it comes to a sharing of equipment and bulk purchasing power to bring the cost of government down.
A Fine Forgiveness program is being held by the Mark Twain Library starting today. In exchange for a non-perishable item, the library will waive 1 dollar of overdue fines, up to a total of 10-dollars. All of the food that's collected between now and Sunday will go to the Redding Food Bank. The Food for Fines Program is only for overdue fines and does not apply to lost or damaged items.
The collection basket by will be located by the front desk.
The Redding Pilot reports that the Food Bank is also looking to collect items like paper towels, toilet paper, soap and cleaning supplies. While boxed items like hot chocolate and cereal are appreciated, the food bank doesn't need pasta or canned soup at this time.
Redding's police chief is weighing in on a summer program about school safety.
Two school principals joined Redding Police Chief Douglas Fuchs at a seminar over the summer in Ridgefield that featured Lt Col Dave Grossman, a former West Point psychology professor and Army Ranger. Grossman has helped train educators and law enforcement professionals around the country. A certification session last summer simulated a response to an armed intruder.
Fuchs told Connecticut Town & City this latest seminar along with the district-wide training last summer, confirmed his belief that the only true deterrent at the moment is a police officer in the school building.
Grossman this summer told participants about strategies, mitigating risk, understanding dynamics of juvenile violence, and school violence.