During a report from Newtown International Center for Education (NICE) Executive Council members, the Board of Education learned of a new strategic plan for the program at its meeting on December 16. NICE Executive Council members Tim DeJulio, Liz Ward-Toller, and Jen Davidson explained goals and objectives for the program along with presenting the strategic plan. “Some of our objectives are to really maintain,” said Mrs Ward-Toller. “… as you can see there are three of us. In the past there have been 20-something members [that] would come to Board of Education meetings.” NICE oversees three sister-school relationships, according to the presentation, with China, France, and Spain. Those relationships, Mrs Ward-Toller said, include having groups of students and chaperones visit each country from Newtown and having visitors come to Newtown from those countries. NICE also has a Japan program, and Mrs Ward-Toller said it could be another sister-school relationship for Newtown.
The chairman of Newtown's Board of Fire Commissioners conducted a brief presentation to the Legislative Council December 3 after representatives posed questions about certain fire department requests in the new Capital Improvement Plan (CIP). The CIP is a five-year projection of major projects planned for the community, most of which are underwritten by bonding. Before addressing specific questions, Fire Commission Chairman Rob Manna explained that his panel's responsibilities include ensuring Newtown's five independent volunteer fire companies are trained, equipped and outfitted to national standards related to firefighting.
BRIDGEPORT — The estates of nine of 26 people who were killed and one teacher who was injured in the December 14, 2012, shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School are the plaintiffs in a negligence and wrongful death lawsuit lodged against the manufacturer, the distributor, and the seller of the semiautomatic Bushmaster AR-15 rifle, which a 20-year-old gunman used in the murders.Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder, PC, of Bridgeport filed the lawsuit December 15 in Bridgeport Superior Court.
A Sandy Hook construction firm and a Farmington architect group – both possessing expertise on senior facilities and swimming pool developments – were unanimously selected by the Board of Selectmen Monday evening to design and complete the first phase of pre-construction services on Newtown’s new community center complex. Following an executive session on the matter, Selectman James Gaston moved the town hire Caldwell and Walsh of Sandy Hook to oversee Phase 1 construction management, and Farmington’s Quisenberry, Arcari Architects, LLC for design services. First Selectman Pat Llodra and Selectman Will Rodgers both supported the motion following a brief discussion.
As a small choir of children sang to piano accompaniment, more than 150 visitors gathered in the warm and brightly lit Newtown Meeting House Sunday evening for an hour-long interfaith service recognizing the second anniversary of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School. The event marked the only public ceremony occurring across the community on December 14, although most local houses of worship held activities recognizing the anniversary earlier in the day.
(AP) A law firm representing the families of nine of the 26 people killed and a teacher injured at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012, says it has filed a lawsuit against the manufacturer, distributor and seller of the rifle used in the shooting. The negligence and wrongful death lawsuit asserts that the Bushmaster AR-15 rifle should not have been made publicly available because it is a military weapon unsuited for civilian use. In addition, the families have named Camfour, a firearm distributor, and Riverview Gun Sales, the store where the Bushmaster rifle was purchased in 2010.
The Catholic Committee on Scouting of The Diocese of Brooklyn and the Catholic Chaplain of JFK International Airport announce the 2014 arrival of the Peace Light from Bethlehem, Church of the Nativity, Jerusalem to the United States. The public is invited to visit Troop A barracks, 90 Lakeside Road in Southbury, on Tuesday, December 16. The Peace Light will be available between noon and 4 pm for those who wish to light their own candle or oil lamp.
Representatives of The Newtown Alumni Fund visited the Newtown Parks & Recreation office on Friday, December 5, where they delivered a $1,000 donation for the department’s Campership Fund. The donation will help pay camp fees for children next summer.
After six months on the front lines, Newtown’s six-member Recovery and Resiliency Team (RRT) is taking stock of its progress while turning a wary eye toward the future. RRT Community Outreach Liaison Melissa Glaser, LPC, told The Newtown Bee heading into the second anniversary of the 12/14 tragedy that she and her colleagues are developing new resources for the community, while striving to develop a sustainable range of community and individual support networks that can respond to residents’ ongoing recovery and posttraumatic issues for years, if not decades, into the future. “I hear a lot of people say, ‘Hey, it’s been two years, things should be getting better,’” Ms Glaser said. “But experts tell us from a recovery standpoint, [Newtown is] in its infancy.”
A group of Walnut Tree Hill Road residents is monitoring the Planning and Zoning Commission’s efforts to create a new zoning designation for high-density, multifamily housing, which would include an “affordable housing” component. The group is paying close attention since one of the two local sites now being eyed by developers for such growth is land lying between Walnut Tree Hill Road and Interstate 84. At a December 4 public hearing, P&Z members reviewed a six-page proposal for a Mixed-Use, Mixed-Income Overlay Zone (MUMI-10). The proposal under review is similar to a four-page proposal that the P&Z had considered on November 20, except that the revised version includes more detail and lists a range of design standards for such development. About 20 people attended the December 4 P&Z session that included discussion of the proposal, and few had anything positive to say about it.