September 2013

Connecticut Sculptor Hopes 'Freedom Angel' Will Be Insignia for Veterans

11/09/13

Connecticut Sculptor Hopes 'Freedom Angel' Will Be Insignia for Veterans

Sterett-Gittings Kelsey hopes to have the angel design put on items such as coffee mugs, plates, and other memorabilia.

Posted at 04:46 AM | Permalink | Comments

Toni Harp Winner in New Haven Mayoral Race

11/06/13

Toni Harp Winner in New Haven Mayoral Race

Toni Harp made history in New Haven last night, becoming the city's first female African-American mayor.

Posted at 05:30 AM | Permalink | Comments

The CCSU 'Gunman', One Student's View: Fear, Comfort, Response Appropriate

11/05/13

The CCSU 'Gunman', One Student's View: Fear, Comfort, Response Appropriate

The lockdown ruined my day and incited fear in a lot of people, but I feel confident that in a dangerous situation, CCSU will keep me, and everyone else, safe.

Posted at 12:10 PM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut Veterans Expelled from U.S. for Minor Crimes Fight Deportations

11/05/13

Connecticut Veterans Expelled from U.S. for Minor Crimes Fight Deportations

Veterans’ advocates say there's a growing number of noncitizen military veterans who are being deported for crimes for which they served time years earlier.

Posted at 05:32 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut Family Fights to Get Pearl Harbor Sailor's Remains Home

11/04/13

Connecticut Family Fights to Get Pearl Harbor Sailor's Remains Home

In 1941, 3rd Class Fireman Edwin Hopkins made the ultimate sacrifice for the United States when he was killed during the Japanese strike on Pearl Harbor. But his remains, designated as unknown by the Navy, are buried in a casket in Hawaii along with the remains of five other “unknown” veterans — and his family wants him home.

Posted at 04:39 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut Attorney General Seeks to Limit What CL&P Gets from Customers for Big Storm Costs

11/02/13

Connecticut Attorney General Seeks to Limit What CL&P Gets from Customers for Big Storm Costs

Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen Friday urged state utility regulators to significantly reduce the $414 million that Connecticut Light & Power has asked to recover from ratepayers as a result of money it spent on repairs following storms in 2011 and 2012.

Posted at 06:20 AM | Permalink | Comments

17 Connecticut Sites Identified in Wall Street Journal's "Waste Lands" Nuclear Cleanup List

11/01/13

17 Connecticut Sites Identified in Wall Street Journal's "Waste Lands" Nuclear Cleanup List

The Wall Street Journal recently published its "Waste Lands" list, identifying radioactive cleanup sites across the nation, including 17 locations across Connecticut.

Posted at 07:15 AM | Permalink | Comments

Matt DeRienzo: Tax Dollars Should Supplement Sandy Hook Victims’ Fund

10/31/13

Matt DeRienzo: Tax Dollars Should Supplement Sandy Hook Victims’ Fund

Why should the families of children who were victims of something horrific at a public elementary school in Connecticut get 1/10th of the financial support of children who were victims of something horrific at a publicly funded university in Pennsylvania?

Posted at 07:50 AM | Permalink | Comments

Cool Justice: Courageous Judge Writes the Book on Lawyer Incompetence

10/31/13

Cool Justice: Courageous Judge Writes the Book on Lawyer Incompetence

A closer look at the judge at the center of the recent action in the Michael Skakel case.

Posted at 04:06 AM | Permalink | Comments

Solar Power a Viable Option For Some Connecticut Homeowners

10/30/13

Solar Power a Viable Option For Some Connecticut Homeowners

Thanks to a new website recently launched by the Clean Energy Finance & Investment Authority, solar energy panels are a more practical option of addressing home heating issues.

Posted at 06:02 AM | Permalink | Comments

10/29/13

Washington Post Database: 11 Connecticut Non-Profits Suffered from Embezzlement, Theft

Eleven non-profit organizations in the state reported significant diversions of assets—meaning funds were stolen, embezzled or misappropriated, accumulating into the hundreds of thousands, according to documents published by The Washington Post. The Washington Post identified more than 1,000 total organizations that reported such diversions throughout the country, examining financial disclosure reports starting in 2008. The database, published Monday, shows 11 Connecticut organizations reported revenue losses due to such diversions. The information is recorded in the IRS Form 990—that most tax-exempt organizations must file annually. The Post’s reporting shows how many organizations don’t fully explain how funds were lost, despite being mandated to do...

Posted at 03:53 PM | Permalink | Comments

Photos: Remembering Hurricane Sandy

10/29/13

Photos: Remembering Hurricane Sandy

A look back at Hurricane Sandy, which devastated the Connecticut shoreline on Oct. 29, 2012.

Posted at 05:30 AM | Permalink | Comments

New Haven Mentors Work to Save Lives

10/28/13

New Haven Mentors Work to Save Lives

The Nation Drill and Drum Squad Corps has been reaching out to mentor youth for more than two decades.

Posted at 06:05 AM | Permalink | Comments

Rebuilding After Storm Sandy on Connecticut Shore Means Raising Houses High

10/27/13

Rebuilding After Storm Sandy on Connecticut Shore Means Raising Houses High

Working in the construction business gave Sergio Mangione of East Haven a leg up when he was forced to rebuild after Superstorm Sandy barreled into the region and destroyed his house on Oct. 29, 2012. Excessive flooding pushed Mangione’s Ellis Road home into a nearby marsh. To ensure his new house would survive future storms, Mangione said he went to great lengths to make sure it was solid. Pilings were driven into the ground and the house is supported by concrete piers. Steel high beams are also used to keep Mangione’s house away from floodwaters. “If we do get another storm, mine isn’t going anywhere,” Mangione said. Also see the New Haven Register story 1 year after Superstorm Sandy, recovery moves slowly on Connecticut shore Under...

Posted at 06:28 AM | Permalink | Comments

Delays in Sandy Hook Police Report Frustrating, Scott Jackson Says

10/25/13

Delays in Sandy Hook Police Report Frustrating, Scott Jackson Says

Hamden Mayor Scott Jackson said that leading the governor’s Sandy Hook Advisory Commission has been “really difficult” because of delays in getting a final report from state police on what happened Dec. 14, 2012.

Posted at 05:51 AM | Permalink | Comments

Michael Skakel Granted New Trial in 1975 Killing

10/24/13

Michael Skakel Granted New Trial in 1975 Killing

Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel was granted a new trial by a Connecticut judge who ruled Skakel’s attorney failed to adequately represent him when he was convicted in 2002 of killing his neighbor in 1975.

Posted at 07:30 AM | Permalink | Comments

Young Ballplayer Takes Field Named in Memory of his Uncle

10/23/13

Young Ballplayer Takes Field Named in Memory of his Uncle

Three generations and 56 years later, 9-year-old catcher Zachary Robert Zajac took the field at Richard Baroni Memorial Field at Hubbard Park in Middletown, named in memory of his great uncle.

Posted at 05:54 AM | Permalink | Comments

In New Haven, Justice Sotomayor Shares the Story of Her Life

10/22/13

In New Haven, Justice Sotomayor Shares the Story of Her Life

U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor visited Southern Connecticut State University and discussed the challenges of her life and the law.

Posted at 05:20 AM | Permalink | Comments

Foundation Fulfills Late Wilton Soldier’s Plan to Help Iraqi Kids

10/21/13

Foundation Fulfills Late Wilton Soldier’s Plan to Help Iraqi Kids

Nick Madaras was killed while serving in Iraq, but his spirit lives on through the Kick for Nick foundation.

Posted at 06:18 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut Boy One of 11 in World Diagnosed With a Rare Genetic Syndrome

10/20/13

Connecticut Boy One of 11 in World Diagnosed With a Rare Genetic Syndrome

Finnegan Straub, a happy toddler from Harwinton, has a shock of red hair and bright, smiling eyes. His second birthday just passed on Sept. 6. It was certainly a day for celebration because, when Finn was born a month early at New Milford Hospital, Lauren and Thomas Straub were told that their son would probably not make it to his first birthday.

Posted at 05:55 AM | Permalink | Comments

‘N-word’ Behind Ansonia Controversy Involving a Public Works Supervisor

10/19/13

‘N-word’ Behind Ansonia Controversy Involving a Public Works Supervisor

The Valley NAACP chapter is backing a black public works employee who was slandered in front of his co-workers with a racial slur by his supervisor.

Posted at 05:29 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut Casinos Look to Get In On Massachusetts' Casino Expansion

10/18/13

Connecticut Casinos Look to Get In On Massachusetts' Casino Expansion

Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods Resort Casino gamble on the chance to build casinos in Massachusetts.

Posted at 05:25 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut Seeks to Return Unclaimed Money to Residents with CT Big List Initiative

10/17/13

Connecticut Seeks to Return Unclaimed Money to Residents with CT Big List Initiative

State Treasurer Denise Nappier is launching the latest campaign to return unclaimed money to Connecticut residents.

Posted at 06:42 AM | Permalink | Comments

Protest held in New Haven against moving female federal prisoners out of Connecticut

10/16/13

Protest held in New Haven against moving female federal prisoners out of Connecticut

Former prisoners, relatives of prisoners, clergy and other advocates predict the movement of women out of the Danbury federal prison will lead to an increase in recidivism and further splintering of families.

Posted at 05:38 AM | Permalink | Comments

‘Guns Save Lives Day’ changed from Dec. 14 to Dec. 15

10/15/13

‘Guns Save Lives Day’ changed from Dec. 14 to Dec. 15

Heeding a public outcry, the organizers for “Guns Save Lives” Day are moving the day from Dec.14 to Dec. 15, and asking that gun control advocates join them in refraining from politicizing the anniversary.

Posted at 05:38 AM | Permalink | Comments

Yale Professor Robert J. Shiller Shares Nobel Prize for Economics (See Our 2011 Interview)

10/14/13

Yale Professor Robert J. Shiller Shares Nobel Prize for Economics (See Our 2011 Interview)

Robert J. Shiller, the Sterling Professor of Economics at Yale University, who quantified how the prices of stocks, bonds and other assets can be predicted over the course of several years--if not in the short term--and who had predicted what would happen when the U.S. housing bubble popped, is one of three to share the Nobel Prize for Economics.

Posted at 06:12 AM | Permalink | Comments

Bacteria Behind Legionnaires’ Disease Found in Water at VA Hospital in West Haven

10/12/13

Bacteria Behind Legionnaires’ Disease Found in Water at VA Hospital in West Haven

WEST HAVEN--Tests at the Veterans Affairs medical center have found “low, but detectable levels” of Legionella bacteria in its water sources, the VA said, adding that there have been “no definite reports” of “healthcare-associated illnesses” related to it. State Rep. Louis P. Esposito, D-West Haven, said he was told by an official at the South Central Connecticut Regional Water Authority that the bacteria “was confined to one building and it was found in about five faucets.” The VA, in a written statement that it sent to its employees and shared with the New Haven Register, said the bacteria was found during “a recent routine water sampling” and there had been no reports of illness. “In the past two...

Posted at 05:14 AM | Permalink | Comments

Cheshire Home Invasion Survivor Dr. William Petit Eyes Politics

10/11/13

Cheshire Home Invasion Survivor Dr. William Petit Eyes Politics

According to his sister, Dr. William Petit has been approached about running for public office and is thinking about entering politics.

Posted at 05:36 AM | Permalink | Comments

Bonnie Foreshaw Granted Clemency After Serving 27 Years for Killing Expectant Mother

10/10/13

Bonnie Foreshaw Granted Clemency After Serving 27 Years for Killing Expectant Mother

EAST LYME--A woman who has been in prison for 27 years for the death of an expectant mother in Hartford was granted clemency Wednesday after an extraordinary hearing before the state Board of Pardons and Paroles, despite emotional pleas to reject the leniency by the victim’s relatives, according to an Associated Press story published by the New Haven Register.

Posted at 04:21 AM | Permalink | Comments

Rwandan Genocide Survivor and LGBT Advocate Holding Guilford Fundraiser

10/08/13

Rwandan Genocide Survivor and LGBT Advocate Holding Guilford Fundraiser

Among Daniel U. Ndamwizeye’s memories is one from a dozen years ago. Then, the West Haven resident was 11 and getting on a plane to leave his native Rwanda for Zambia, the first leg of a journey from pain to salvation, from tragedy to opportunity and freedom.

Posted at 06:56 PM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut as Silicon Valley-Style 'Greenhouse' for Growing Software Developers?

10/08/13

Connecticut as Silicon Valley-Style 'Greenhouse' for Growing Software Developers?

The job of software developer is one of the hottest occupations in the world right now, and demand for developers is only expected to accelerate, WNPR reports in a story on its website. That poses a dilemma for startup technology companies here in Connecticut. In an incredibly competitive marketplace, how do they find and cultivate the right talent? One program in Connecticut is trying to come up with a solution. Ted Yang is an MIT graduate, angel investor and entrepreneur, and he's one of the founders of MediaCrossing, the WNPR story says. "MediaCrossing is a digital media trading company," Yang said. "Our goal is to be the intersection of Wall Street and Madison Avenue." See the full story online at WNPR's news portal.

Posted at 04:04 AM | Permalink | Comments

Yale Professor Among Three Winners of Nobel Prize in Medicine

10/07/13

Yale Professor Among Three Winners of Nobel Prize in Medicine

Americans James E. Rothman, a professor of biomedical sciences at Yale University, Randy W. Schekman, a professor of cell and developmental biology at the University of California, Berkeley, and German-born Thomas C. Suedhof, a professor in the School of Medicine at Stanford University, are sharing the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.

Posted at 08:05 AM | Permalink | Comments

Mia Farrow's Vanity Fair Interview References 1997 Connecticut Magazine Article

10/04/13

Mia Farrow's Vanity Fair Interview References 1997 Connecticut Magazine Article

Mia Farrow's interview in the November issue of Vanity Fair includes Woody Allen's alleged abuses that were detailed in a 1997 Connecticut Magazine article by Andy Thibault.

Posted at 06:22 AM | Permalink | Comments

Stamford Neighbors of Slain D.C. Driver Try to Cope with Crazed Atmosphere

10/04/13

Stamford Neighbors of Slain D.C. Driver Try to Cope with Crazed Atmosphere

Within hours of Miriam Carey’s death, her neighbors saw helicopters and flashing lights as local police, federal agents, a bomb squad and the media machine parachuted in.

Posted at 03:26 AM | Permalink | Comments

Thousands of Pratt & Whitney, Sikorsky Workers Could Be Furloughed

10/03/13

Thousands of Pratt & Whitney, Sikorsky Workers Could Be Furloughed

Thousands of workers at Pratt & Whitney and Sikorsky aircraft could be furloughed if the federal government shutdown continues through the end of next week.

Posted at 04:07 AM | Permalink | Comments

11-year-old New Haven Quarterback a Star On and Off the Field

10/02/13

11-year-old New Haven Quarterback a Star On and Off the Field

Sahim Hasan displays a maturity and intellect that makes him a leader wherever he goes.

Posted at 04:27 AM | Permalink | Comments

Yale Receives $250 Million Gift - Largest in History

10/01/13

Yale Receives $250 Million Gift - Largest in History

The largest gift in Yale University’s history will pave the way for two new residential colleges to be built near Ingalls Rink.

Posted at 05:42 AM | Permalink | Comments

Milford Neighborhood Canvasser Recounts Series of Racial Events

09/30/13

Milford Neighborhood Canvasser Recounts Series of Racial Events

It was near 8:30 p.m. on July 19 in a quiet residential neighborhood when Leroy Gardner thought he was going to die.

Posted at 05:36 AM | Permalink | Comments

Durham Fair's 'Elephant Encounter' Draws Protesters Saturday

09/29/13

Durham Fair's 'Elephant Encounter' Draws Protesters Saturday

DURHAM--Guests coming through the gates on the third day of the Durham Fair Saturday were greeted by local animal advocates protesting a new attraction at town’s showcase. (The fair continues Sunday.)

Posted at 05:28 AM | Permalink | Comments

The Life, and Death, of 6-Year-Old North Haven Boy Leaves Inspiring Legacy

09/28/13

The Life, and Death, of 6-Year-Old North Haven Boy Leaves Inspiring Legacy

  NORTH HAVEN--Matthew Jacques, like most 6-year-old boys, dreamed of one day playing football. A congenital heart defect made it impossible. So the football team at North Haven High allowed him to carry out a fantasy during its annual June scrimmage, staging a touchdown run and celebration capable of brightening the darkest of souls. Matthew, in his youthful innocence, managed to convey a simple yet valuable life lesson to those teenage boys: it’s far more rewarding to give than to receive, especially when it comes to assisting your fellow man. “I’ve never seen a look in the eyes of our team like I did the day after that game,” North Haven coach Anthony Sagnella said. “They knew they did something special, they knew they touched the...

Posted at 05:39 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut Improves to No. 33 in Forbes' List of Best States for Business

09/27/13

Connecticut Improves to No. 33 in Forbes' List of Best States for Business

Although the state continues to face a number of challenges, the business outlook may be getting brighter.

Posted at 12:04 PM | Permalink | Comments

Shelton Mom Helps Lead Fight Against Barilla Pasta's Anti-Gay Remarks; Stop & Shop Petition

09/27/13

Shelton Mom Helps Lead Fight Against Barilla Pasta's Anti-Gay Remarks; Stop & Shop Petition

The worldwide backlash against the Italian pasta maker Barilla following company president Guido Barilla’s remarks Wednesday on an Italian radio program that, according to a CNN story, “he wouldn't feature same-sex couples in his company's commercials because he prefers the ‘traditional’ family” includes a Connecticut effort to lobby Stop & Shop to stop carrying Barilla products. According to Change.org, Linda Ferraro, an Italian-American mother from Shelton, worked with GLAAD to launch a Change.org petition asking Stop & Shop to discontinue carrying the “anti-gay pasta.” In the petition, which Change.org says is the fastest growing LGBT-related petition in the U.S., getting more than 1,000 signatures in less than 24...

Posted at 11:07 AM | Permalink | Comments

Metro-North May Get Partial Electric Service Next Week, Malloy Says

09/27/13

Metro-North May Get Partial Electric Service Next Week, Malloy Says

Partial electric service may return to Metro-North’s New Haven Line next week according to Gov. Dannel P. Malloy.

Posted at 05:29 AM | Permalink | Comments

The Big Wildlife Story in Connecticut? Moose 'on the Loose'

09/26/13

The Big Wildlife Story in Connecticut? Moose 'on the Loose'

On Wednesday morning, a moose turned up in what seemed like a very unlikely place—New Britian. The animal was euthanized, because, according to a statement from the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), “It was causing an imminent danger to public safety by repeatedly crossing the highway leaving us no choice but to euthanize it.” The moose was a 2- to 3-year-old male, and weighed about 500 pounds, a story published by the New Haven Register online said. A day earlier, on Tuesday, accoding to The Litchfield County Times, there was a report of a moose wandering through the parking lot of the New Milford Hospital at approximately 7:20 a.m. "We located the moose in the parking lot," Lt. Larry Ash of the New...

Posted at 09:48 AM | Permalink | Comments

Hamden Rally Notes Connecticut’s Leading Role in Worker Protection Programs

09/25/13

Hamden Rally Notes Connecticut’s Leading Role in Worker Protection Programs

Connecticut Comptroller Kevin Lembo and U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro recently spoke out to extend worker protection programs.

Posted at 05:55 AM | Permalink | Comments

Are Horses Vicious? Connecticut Supreme Court Weighs Issue Today; Milford Case

09/24/13

Are Horses Vicious? Connecticut Supreme Court Weighs Issue Today; Milford Case

HARTFORD--Media outlets across the country and as far away as the UK are picking up the story about a Connecticut case being heard on appeal in the state Supreme Court today (Sept. 23) that has as a central question whether horses are vicious. An Associated Press story published by the New Haven Register online says: After a horse named Scuppy bit a boy in the face, a Connecticut court came to a conclusion that threw animal lovers: Horses are a naturally vicious species. Horse owners and farmers are mobilizing as the state Supreme Court hears an appeal in the case Tuesday. Such a classification — the nation’s first, if it stands — would make owning horses uninsurable and jeopardize the state’s sizable horse industry, farmers and horse owners say....

Posted at 07:08 AM | Permalink | Comments

WNPR Takes on Billy Smolinski Case, Issue of Missing Persons

09/24/13

WNPR Takes on Billy Smolinski Case, Issue of Missing Persons

Cold cases are frustrating to police and to family members whose loved ones disappear. Jan and William Smolinski of Cheshire have been looking for their son, Billy, for nine years. He disappeared in 2004.

Posted at 04:27 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut Casinos Have Cheaters on Their Radar

09/23/13

Connecticut Casinos Have Cheaters on Their Radar

An Associated Press story published online at The Register Citizen explains how casinos, including those in Connecticut, have their own network of security that tracks cheaters. "The man at the poker table had a ball cap pulled down almost to his nose, but his glance up at a television screen revealed a familiar face to Mohegan Sun’s surveillance cameras: A photograph of the known card cheater had been sent by bulletin to casinos around the country," the story opens, going on to say: Within hours, the bettor was arrested, accused of marking cards with invisible ink. “The officer who identified him, basically she had a ‘Holy crap!’ moment,” said Jay Lindroos, the casino’s surveillance director. “She saw the face and said,...

Posted at 04:29 AM | Permalink | Comments

Hurricane Like That of 1938 Would Be Deadly Serious Today

09/22/13

Hurricane Like That of 1938 Would Be Deadly Serious Today

If a hurricane with the fury of the storm that slammed us in 1938 were to hit today, it would be deadly serious event. But the good news: • We’d know it was coming a lot sooner, and we’d know how big a storm it really was. • We’d be able to get out of Dodge (or Milford or New Haven), evacuating to higher, farther-away ground, so we likely wouldn’t lose as many lives. Now the bad news: • We’d lose at least as much of our power and our property — houses, cars, trees, railroad tracks, backyard swing sets — because there are a lot more trees, a lot more houses on the coast, and it would be far too costly to rebuild them to withstand another Atlantic Express, as the ’38 storm was called. While Tropical...

Posted at 06:24 AM | Permalink | Comments

At 97, Guilford Woman Remains Devoted to Riding Ferris Wheel at the Fair

09/21/13

At 97, Guilford Woman Remains Devoted to Riding Ferris Wheel at the Fair

Like the Guilford Fair itself, Marjorie Spalding has years of history on her side. Spalding, 97, has ridden the fair’s Ferris wheel since her youth growing up in town, and doesn’t plan on stopping anytime soon.

Posted at 05:59 AM | Permalink | Comments

WNPR: I-84 West at Connecticut-N.Y. Border to Be Closed This Weekend for Bridge Work

09/20/13

WNPR: I-84 West at Connecticut-N.Y. Border to Be Closed This Weekend for Bridge Work

If you plan to take I-84 West over the New York border this weekend, you might want to think again.

Posted at 10:57 AM | Permalink | Comments

FBI Agent Details Former UConn Star Tate George’s Alleged Ponzi Scheme

09/19/13

FBI Agent Details Former UConn Star Tate George’s Alleged Ponzi Scheme

TRENTON, N.J.--An FBI agent detailed today how big bucks from prominent backers went out to his ex-wife and new girlfriend hours after the money landed in an account former basketball great Tate George was supposed to be using in a real estate venture.

Posted at 06:14 PM | Permalink | Comments

New Bridge on I-95 in New Haven to Cost $130 Million; Work to Start Next Spring

09/19/13

New Bridge on I-95 in New Haven to Cost $130 Million; Work to Start Next Spring

Another bridge on I-95 in New Haven is coming down. Bids were opened last week to replace the Interstate 95 bridge over the West River between West Haven and New Haven, according to Brian Mercure, assistant district engineer for the state Department of Transportation. The apparent low bidder was The Middlesex Corp. of Littleton, Mass., at $129,773,454. “It’s $30 million less than we expected,” Mercure said. The job was priced “in the $160 million range, so we saved around $30 million, just in the bid here, which is good for the department’s program, and means more work can go out.” Seven other companies bid for the work, with the Yonkers/Brunalli Joint Venture the high bidder at more than $177 million. The bridge is just west of...

Posted at 04:45 AM | Permalink | Comments

Stamford House Explosion: Connecticut Has History of Propane-Related Blasts, Some Deadly

09/18/13

Stamford House Explosion: Connecticut Has History of Propane-Related Blasts, Some Deadly

The explosion that destroyed a house and rocked rural North Stamford Tuesday afternoon has parallels to a deadly house explosion just over a year ago in a rural part of New Milford, and is among a number of propane-related explosions in Connecticut in the past year, including one in Shelton last September that left three men with significant burns and injuries, and a more minor incident in August 2012 that shook and damaged the town hall in Washington, Conn. Below, a photo of the scene in North Stamford, north of the Merritt Parkway, taken by Colin Maclennan of Stamford, who posted it on Twitter. A Stamford Advocate story said Tuesday's explosion was felt by residents as far as two miles away from the scene, and that the owner of the leveled house, at 305 Webbs Hill Rd.,...

Posted at 08:10 AM | Permalink | Comments

Starbucks Says Guns No Longer Welcome in Cafes But Not Technically Banned

09/18/13

Starbucks Says Guns No Longer Welcome in Cafes But Not Technically Banned

An Associated Press story published online by the New Haven Register says guns are no longer welcome in Starbucks cafes, but that Starbucks stopped short of imposing an outright ban on firearms. "The fine line that the retailer is walking to address the concerns of both gun rights and gun control advocates reflects how heated the issue has become, particularly in light of recent mass shootings," the story says, going on to quote Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz saying the national coffee chain is now asking customers not to bring weapons into cafes because guns in stores "have made our customers uncomfortable.” The reaction of one group with a focus on gun control was made obvious on Twitter: FACT: @momsdemand is leading the cultural change and...

Posted at 04:13 AM | Permalink | Comments

Major Explosion Destroys Houses in North Stamford, Reports Say

09/17/13

Major Explosion Destroys Houses in North Stamford, Reports Say

The Stamford Advocate and other media are reporting that a major explosion, possibly involving a propane tank, has destroyed at least two houses in North Stamford this afternoon (Sept. 17) According to the Advocate, the initial call came in at 305 Webbs Hill Road and other houses in the area are on fire. A WTNH News story says Webbs Hill Road is north of the Merritt Parkway. Emergency responders are on the scene. News outlets have picked up the photo from the scene posted on Twitter by Colin Maclennan. North stamford house explosion @News12CT @stamfordctnews pic.twitter.com/gpau1j9oAg — Colin (@Colin_MacL) September 17, 2013

Posted at 11:55 AM | Permalink | Comments

It Was Gingrich vs. Amar, At Yale

09/17/13

It Was Gingrich vs. Amar, At Yale

Conservative icon Newt Gingrich headlined a semantics showdown at Yale Monday night, debating the lessons of the U.S. Constitution with a respected Yale professor.

Posted at 05:51 AM | Permalink | Comments

Activists From Newtown Head to Washington, Again, For Gun Control After Navy Yard Shooting

09/17/13

Activists From Newtown Head to Washington, Again, For Gun Control After Navy Yard Shooting

According to an Associated Press story published online by the New Haven Register, activists from Newtown, where 26 people were fatally shot last December, "are headed to Washington to again lobby for gun control, a day after 12 people were killed in a shooting rampage in the capital." About 50 members of the Newtown Action Alliance left for Washington on Tuesday. Their first stop is to be a hearing by U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., on Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law, the Associated Press story said. David Ackert, the group’s founder, told the Hearst Connecticut Media Group that the shootings at the Washington Navy Yard on Monday bring back “terrible feelings," according to the AP story. See the full story at the New Haven...

Posted at 04:42 AM | Permalink | Comments

Seymour Celebrates Dedication of Veteran's Park

09/16/13

Seymour Celebrates Dedication of Veteran's Park

The community recently celebrated the completion of a park nearly 30 years in the making, paying homage to veterans of all wars.

Posted at 05:43 AM | Permalink | Comments

Rappelling Down the Side of a Stamford Building to Aid Special Olympics Connecticut

09/16/13

Rappelling Down the Side of a Stamford Building to Aid Special Olympics Connecticut

Rappelling down a 15-story building is kind of like taking an elevator down a 15-story building. Except, you’re on the exterior of the building and instead of a carpeted floor directly beneath there’s 15 stories of gravitational pull until a pavement sidewalk.

Posted at 04:48 AM | Permalink | Comments

Schooner Amistad to Return to New Haven, Mission of Freedom, After Troubled Waters

09/15/13

Schooner Amistad to Return to New Haven, Mission of Freedom, After Troubled Waters

Through years of treacherous fiscal waters, the Freedom Schooner Amistad’s owner never abandoned the ship’s mission as Connecticut’s flagship and ambassador to tell its powerful story of freedom to the world, embattled present and former leaders of Amistad America say.

Posted at 06:58 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut Airman Killed in Afghanistan Remembered for Heroism, Leadership

09/14/13

Connecticut Airman Killed in Afghanistan Remembered for Heroism, Leadership

As the funeral procession passed, carrying the coffin of third-generation airman Todd J. Lobraico Jr., hundreds of people lined the route, some waving American flags.

Posted at 06:33 AM | Permalink | Comments

Webster Bank Will Close or Relocate 20 to 30 Branches Over a Decade

09/14/13

Webster Bank Will Close or Relocate 20 to 30 Branches Over a Decade

Plenty of changes are in store for Webster Bank’s network of 169 branches across four states, executives of the Waterbury-based financial institution told a group of institutional investors in New York City this week.

Posted at 05:44 AM | Permalink | Comments

Fortune, the Connecticut Slave Whose Body Was Used as Medical Model, Finally Buried in Waterbury

09/13/13

Fortune, the Connecticut Slave Whose Body Was Used as Medical Model, Finally Buried in Waterbury

The man called Fortune, who worked as a slave for a Waterbury doctor and then, after his death, was misused as a medical model, was given his ultimate freedom Thursday, his life celebrated by state and church and his bodily remains put to rest.

Posted at 04:22 AM | Permalink | Comments

Momentum Builds for Memorial to Mark Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Time in Simsbury

09/12/13

Momentum Builds for Memorial to Mark Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Time in Simsbury

Another advancement in fundraising momentum has been made for Simsbury to become home to a permanent memorial dedicated to Martin Luther King,Jr., and to the impact that the two summers he spent as a young migrant worker on a tobacco farm in Simsbury had on him.

Posted at 02:36 PM | Permalink | Comments

After Norwalk Oyster Fest Ride Incident, a Focus on Safety; Accidents Tracked Online

09/11/13

After Norwalk Oyster Fest Ride Incident, a Focus on Safety; Accidents Tracked Online

With an investigation underway into the Zumur swing ride accident at the Norwalk Seaport Association's Oyster Festival last Sunday that injured 18, and the release from a hospital Monday of the last of those injured, Connecticut families will surely have amusement ride safety on their minds as they enjoy the end of the summer carnival and fair season.

Posted at 10:13 AM | Permalink | Comments

Malloy Urges State to 'Never Forget' at 9/11 Ceremony in Westport

09/11/13

Malloy Urges State to 'Never Forget' at 9/11 Ceremony in Westport

Twelve years after the World Trade Center bombings and the unfathomable deaths of almost 3,000 innocent people, families of Connecticut’s victims gathered at Sherwood Island State Park in Westport where the granite 9/11 Living Memorial has been established in their memory.

Posted at 04:47 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut's Microgrid Power Plan in Wake of Storm Sandy Gets National Attention

09/10/13

Connecticut's Microgrid Power Plan in Wake of Storm Sandy Gets National Attention

The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection's Microgrid Pilot Program, which is designed to develop innovative ways to keep critical buildings powered during electric grid outages, has caught the attention of the award-winning online news and entertainment Web site Salon.com, which published a story yesterday, After Sandy, rethinking microgrids, taking note of Connecticut's status as the first state in the nation to broadly embrace the microgrid approach.

Posted at 09:23 AM | Permalink | Comments

9/11 to Be Marked Today in Westport, Wednesday in New Milford, Elsewhere

09/10/13

9/11 to Be Marked Today in Westport, Wednesday in New Milford, Elsewhere

Ceremonies to mark the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks are being held in a number of communities around the state today or Wednesday morning, with the state's official event taking place in Westport early this evening, and one of the most formal single-town events taking place tomorrow morning in New Milford in Litchfield County.

Posted at 07:43 AM | Permalink | Comments

300 Attend Congressman Himes Syria Forum

09/09/13

300 Attend Congressman Himes Syria Forum

More than 300 people packed the Darien library on a sunny Sunday for a public forum called by Fourth District Congressman Jim Himes to discuss whether or not the United States should strike Syria to penalize the Assad regime for its use of chemical weapons.

Posted at 06:48 AM | Permalink | Comments

Abused in Death, Waterbury Slave To Have Funeral

09/09/13

Abused in Death, Waterbury Slave To Have Funeral

It's been a long journey for the bones of a former slave, but they will find a proper resting place soon.

Posted at 06:21 AM | Permalink | Comments

Natural Gas Expansion Plans That Mesh With Malloy's Connecticut Energy Policy Head to Hearings

09/08/13

Natural Gas Expansion Plans That Mesh With Malloy's Connecticut Energy Policy Head to Hearings

State utility regulators will begin hearings Tuesday regarding a plan by the state’s three natural gas utilities to undertake a massive expansion of their distribution network. The three utilities — Yankee Gas, Connecticut Natural Gas and Southern Connecticut Gas — filed their plan with the state’s Public Utilities Regulatory Authority in June. The plan calls for the utilities to add approximately 280,000 new natural gas customers in Connecticut over the next 10 years. Officials for all three utilities said Friday they welcome the opportunity to make their case at the hearings as to why the expansion plan is important. Connecticut Natural Gas and Southern Connecticut Gas are owned by New Haven-based UIL Holdings, while Yankee Gas, which is...

Posted at 06:23 AM | Permalink | Comments

With Long Island Sound Lobsters Challenged, Catching Them Banned for First Time

09/07/13

With Long Island Sound Lobsters Challenged, Catching Them Banned for First Time

With Long Island Sound lobster landings down from a peak of 3.7 million pounds in 1998 to just 230,000 pounds last year, Connecticut and New York lobstermen will get a taste of some bitter medicine this fall that may or may not do any good.

Posted at 06:03 AM | Permalink | Comments

Courant Story This Sunday: Hundreds of Weapons Incidents in Connecticut Schools in 2011-12 School Year

09/06/13

Courant Story This Sunday: Hundreds of Weapons Incidents in Connecticut Schools in 2011-12 School Year

An advance story today on The Hartford Courant's website announces a story coming in Sunday's print edition and an interactive online feature that will detail the more than 1,200 incidents involving weapons, or common items used as weapons, reported in Connecticut public schools in the 2011-12 academic year.

Posted at 07:27 AM | Permalink | Comments

Connecticut State Police Have New Policies on Tattoos, Social Media Use

09/05/13

Connecticut State Police Have New Policies on Tattoos, Social Media Use

Seems everyone has a thumb on them these days, even cops. State police have issued a wide-ranging policy on tattoos and social media, warning staff that “speech, on or off duty, made pursuant to their official duties, is not protected speech and may form the basis for discipline.”

Posted at 12:02 PM | Permalink | Comments