About 150 well-wishers took part in a testimonial for Mae Schmidle and Julia Wasserman on Sunday, June 28, held to honor the two women for their decades of local public service. Due to health reasons, Mrs Wasserman was not able to attend the event held in the Great Room at the Newtown Congregational Church on West Street. First Selectman Pat Llodra served as mistress of ceremonies.
As the new fiscal year begins, property and motor vehicle taxes come due, homeowners balance landscaping projects and yard work with recreational activities like grilling and enjoying their residential swimming pools. At the same time, town officials have provided some timely tips, advice, and warnings to help residents stay safe, and to possibly ease the process for taxpayers as they write checks for property and motor vehicle taxes that are due by August 1. Local property owners should have received their residential and auto tax bills by now, according to Tax Collector Carol Mahoney. If they did not, they should reach her office as soon as possible, and definitely before July 31 to avoid any late penalties and interest on the unpaid portion of those bills.
Electors and citizens qualified to vote at town meetings of the Town of Newtown are being called to participate in a Special Town Meeting on Monday, July 6, at 7:15 pm, at the Newtown Municipal Center, 3 Primrose Street. Among other things to be done during a meeting expected to last less than 15 minutes, qualified voters will be asked to endorse or reject a resolution for a special appropriation in the amount of $3.6 million for the planning, design, and construction of improvements to the Newtown High School auditorium, and authorizing the issuance of $3.6 million in bonds to cover that appropriation.
All town offices will be closed on Friday, July 3, in honor of Independence Day. Newtown Senior Center and C.H. Booth Library also will be closed on Friday, July 3. The transfer station will be open on Friday, however, and closed on Saturday. Click through to see additional closings scheduled in relation to the national holiday that commemorates the date the original 13 colonies declared their independence from Great Britain.
Police report that at about 11:29 pm on June 25, a youth under the age of 18 was driving an unspecified vehicle on Paugussett Road, near its intersection with Skytop Drive, when that vehicle went off the side of the road. The youth was not injured, and was arrested on charges including driving under the influence. Police released the youth for an upcoming juvenile court date after $100 bail was posted. Read more about recent police activity in this week's report.
The 100-bed psychiatric hospital bid for development at Fairfield Hills has refocused to sites elsewhere in town. Fairfield Hills Authority Chairman Thomas Connors said recently that he, along with US HealthVest behavioral health facility CEO Richard A. Kresch MD, and other town officials have considered alternative property in Newtown “in the interest of avoiding potential challenges the project might face” by developing a practice on the Fairfield Hills campus. Mr Connors mentioned a property near the Bethel border along Route 6. Dr Kresch has visited the location and seems interested, Mr Connors said.
Governor Dannel P. Malloy has issued a proclamation declaring the week of July 28-July 5, 2015 Social and Emotional Learning Awareness Week. The timing of the proclamation was done to coincide with what would have been the ninth birthday of Jesse Lewis on June 30. Jesse was one of the children killed on 12/14. “This is a JesseLewisChooseLove.org initiative, and we are working towards teaching children to choose love,” said Jesse’s mother, Scarlett Lewis.
As more of Connecticut’s law enforcement agencies are joining Newtown’s Police Department using a nationally recognized risk assessment tool when responding to domestic violence calls, local officers employing their recently implemented “Lethality Assessment” interview are finding that half the local victims and their families are reporting “high danger” threats. Newtown’s Police Department implemented the program in late 2014 under the supervision of Lieutenant Christopher Vanghele, and as of June 1, the Lethality Assessment Program (LAP) is being implemented by more than half of Connecticut’s law enforcement agencies. Overseen by Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence (CCADV), the Lethality Assessment Program is further strengthening partnerships between law enforcement and domestic violence agencies. Officers responding to calls for domestic violence use an evidence-based screening tool to quickly assess those victims at the highest risk for increased or fatal violence.