As state budget cuts threaten to eliminate funding for the Second Company Governor’s Horse Guard, efforts to preserve the more than 200-year-old militia unit continue. State Representative Mitch Bolinsky (R-106), said May 4 that the horse guard was either cut from one of several state budget options — a state budget has not yet been finalized — or included as a “zero budget” item. But as in past years when funding was restored at the last minute, he said, “Never say never. Things can change quickly in Hartford.”
Conneticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is forecasting unhealthy air quality for “sensitive groups” Friday, May 8, due to predicted elevated ground-level ozone pollution for northern Fairfield, Northern New Haven, Litchfield, Hartford and Tolland counties. A forecast of “Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups” indicates increased likelihood of respiratory symptoms and breathing discomfort in active children and adults with respiratory disease, such as asthma, and the elderly. High pressure currently located off mid-Atlantic Coast today and Friday will continue to transport warmer air and pump elevated levels of ozone from downwind air pollution sources into Connecticut, according to DEEP. In addition to transported air pollution, “home grown” pollution will be intensified by the combination of strong May sunlight and later than usual blooming spring vegetation that also contributes to ozone levels at this time of year.
The “town within a town” that is the Borough of Newtown, an area centered around Main Street at the heart of the community, has 1,280 voters who were eligible to cast ballots on Monday, May 4. Borough elections for a completely unopposed slate of 13, however, drew just 35 electors who cast ballots at the Newtown Municipal Center between 6 am and 8 pm that day. But it only would have taken a single complete ballot to elect or reelect the slate topped by incumbent Borough Warden James O. Gaston, Sr, who also serves the entire community as the sole Democrat on the town’s Board of Selectman. Mr Gaston, who won his fifth two-year term, was appreciative of the nearly three dozen borough voters who did make the time to participate in the biennial vote.
Standing on the stage at Reed Intermediate School, Superintendent of Schools Joseph V. Erardi, Jr, estimated on Monday, April 27, that he was addressing the parents of the Newtown High School graduation Class of 2028.
The evening presentation was held as a forum for parents of incoming kindergarten students for the 2015-16 school year.
Administrators, district teachers, Board of Education Chair Keith Alexander, and school board member John Vouros were present.
The VFW handicap ramp at the VFW Post 308 canteen, Freedom Defenders Way in Newtown, is being overhauled. Donations are sought to offset the cost of the new planks. Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant rails will be installed as well.
Members of the Board of Education’s Curriculum and Instruction Committee and Assistant Superintendent of Schools Linda Gejda recently reflected on the work the group has accomplished and its future endeavors.
As Dr Gejda explained, the Board of Education’s Curriculum and Instruction Committee members Michelle Ku and John Vouros are given initial information before presentations are made by district educators for full school board. The Curriculum and Instruction Committee then requests information, if needed, to be added and decides whether the presentation is ready to go before the full school board.
Information provided by community members who participated in a community forum in September, Ms Ku said, has been used to guide the committee. Responses during the community forum included requests for more rigor and challenges in school for students.
A stubborn, intense fire, which was fueled by the compressed gas within two large propane tanks, destroyed a Cape-style house at 4 Aunt Park Lane in Hattertown early on the morning of Monday, May 4, leaving only a foundation and chimney standing amid the smoldering ruins. Dodgingtown Volunteer Fire Company Assistant Chief Joe Masso, who served as incident commander, said there were no injuries in the blaze, which was reported to the town’s emergency dispatch center at about 4 am. The cause of the fire was initially unclear.
A Newtown Police Department sergeant and a dispatcher at the town’s emergency communications center are among eight men who have been arrested by federal officials as part of an alleged drug trafficking ring. Among those arrested are Sergeant Steven Santucci, 38, of Waterbury, and dispatcher Jason Chickos, 46, of Bridgeport.The charges against the eight men allege that they illegally distributed steroids and prescription narcotics. Also, among the eight charged is a state judicial marshal, Jeffrey Gentile, 33, of Ansonia. The investigators arrested the eight men as part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation dubbed “Operation Juice Box.”