The Board of Selectmen moved quickly to reorganize Newtown’s Land Use, Planning, and Economic Development functions following the recent departure of Director of Economic and Community Development Director Elizabeth Stocker, who has taken a new job with similar responsibilities in Norwalk. On August 18, selectmen endorsed eliminating the economic and community development director position and promoting Land Use Director George Benson to Director of Planning; increasing the responsibilities of Deputy Land Use Director Rob Sibley; and converting the economic development coordinator from a contract to a staff position, with added responsibilities for Betsy Paynter. Also, Christal Preszler, who handled some economic development support as well as duties for the Fairfield Hills Authority as a contract hourly worker, will become a town staffer with added responsibilities as Newtown’s new grant coordinator.
Town police have received approval for an almost $17,000 grant, and plan to use the money for traffic speed enforcement now through the end of September, and also to acquire some new radar-based speed detection equipment. The department plans to spend $3,495 to buy some new radar speed detection equipment to replace older equipment, and also spend $13,400 to cover police overtime costs for specialized speed enforcement work shifts running from August 18 through September 30.
Volunteers are encouraged to attend tonight's Newtown Forest Association (NFA) 90th anniversary celebration planning meeting at 7 pm at the Holcombe Hill Wildlife Preserve at 55/65 Great Hill Road.
Just 18 days remain until the NFA Sunset Wine Tasting Event on September 6, 2014 as the NFA Celebrates 90 years of privately preserving open space and Newtown's rural character.
Governor Dannel P. Malloy is directing flags in Connecticut to return to full-staff at sunset this evening. Flags have been flying at half-staff in honor of Staff Sgt Ronald Patterson Jr of Bridgeport, who was killed on Thursday, August 7, in a motor vehicle accident while on a routine transport of training material.
A “fragile resource” running quietly through town needs protection, especially after past oil spills and a fish poisoning in 2013 diminished its health. At the end of Old Farm Road below the Second Company Governor’s Horse Guard is a section of Deep Brook, designated as Deep Brook Open Space — a strip of land bordering the section of stream that “tries to protect” the waterway said Conservation Commission Chair Ann Astarita. “We need to take care of natural resources that we have. It’s an essential resource to preserve the brook and its water quality,” she said. Deep Brook is only one of nine areas designated as a Class I wild trout area in the state. “They’re not common,” she said. Essentially, it means the water is cold and clear and good for trout.
Jon Marc Jagush served a soft shot into the Parks and Recreation Commission’s court Tuesday night. After commending members for the spaces and fields they maintain for children, he mentioned another recreation area that “I need a little help wi...
Is there any town that loves its parade more than Newtown? If the thousands that turn out to celebrate the end of summer each year are any indication, the answer is “No,” and Parade Committee members are prepared to present another spectacular affair for 2014. Preparations for the 53rd Annual Labor Day Parade are right on schedule for the event, said Parade Committee President Beth Caldwell and fellow organizer Robin Buchanan. “We’re thrilled to be presenting it again,” said Ms Buchanan. “We’re hoping for a perfect day,” said Ms Buchanan, but rain or shine, the parade will step off at the head of Main Street at 10 am, Monday, September 1.
HARTFORD (AP) - Teachers felt they were rushed into returning to the classroom following the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the president of the local teachers union said Friday. Tom Kuroski, president of the Newtown Federation of Teachers, told members of a state commission that some teachers, still struggling with their own emotions, felt ill-prepared to deal with their returning students. The shooting, which left 20 first graders and six educators dead, occurred on Dec. 14, 2012, a Friday. Classes resumed for Newtown students, except those attending Sandy Hook, on Dec. 18, the following Tuesday. Sandy Hook students returned to classes on Jan. 3, 2013. "If you look at what other school districts have done, that have endured similar tragedies, they've definitely given their teachers some time to get the training, the thorough training that they're going to need in order to do the best job they can when they return," said Kuroski, a science teacher. "A one-day workshop where our input wasn't even listened to was not something that we thought was moving us in the right direction."
The picturesque but asbestos-ridden former staff homes that dot the northwestern end of the Fairfield Hills campus will apparently be around a while longer. A plan to remediate and demolish them, after being utilized for local company department exercises, has been halted because of rapidly escalating costs to demolish Danbury Hall on the opposite side of the campus. The ongoing saga of trying to raze the homes and dorm building took a new turn this week as the Board of Finance and Legislative Council approved adding $100,000 to a previously approved bonding authorization. First Selectman Pat Llodra said that the added funds will only be enough to ensure Danbury Hall demotion could be finished.