NEW HAVEN – A federal judge Monday dismissed the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s (NSSF) lawsuit against Governor Dannel Malloy, and other state officials, which challenged the legality of a state gun control law approved last April stemming from the Sandy Hook School shooting incident of December 14, 2012.
At one point during a press conference hosted by several town officials and community leaders Tuesday afternoon at Newtown Municipal Center, First Selectman Pat Llodra was asked about how she would like people outside of Newtown to pay tribute to those lost, as well as to residents and others who have endured the daily reminders leading up to the first year anniversary of 12/14. "The best way to honor what happened to the youngsters and loved ones who lost their lives here on December 14, is to take care of someone in your own community," Mrs Llodra replied. People outside the community have extended kindness to Newtown every single day since 12/14, she said, "and we really try and convince people that there are families and organizations in their own community that should be the recipients of their kindness."
Long before the first environmental contractors started reporting higher than expected levels of lead, asbestos and PCBs in construction debris at Sandy Hook School, a panel of town officials and residents in a subsequent referendum had already endorsed razing and replacing the aging elementary school building. According to Public Building & Site Commission Chairman Robert Mitchell, the town and its residents made the right choice. Mr Mitchell said in a facility update he planed to deliver to his commissioners December 3, that had the town decided to reoccupy the school on Dickinson Drive, it would have faced a daunting and possibly insurmountable challenge regarding the presence of hazardous materials. The expense for identifying, removing and processing the heightened amount of materials found during demolition required nearly double what was originally budgeted for that aspect of the project.
First Selectman Pat Llodra has issued a brief announcement concerning the impending release of 911 calls related to the Sandy Hook School shootings on December 14, 2012. The recordings will be available after 2 pm Wednesday, December 4. They will only include dispatches from Newtown Police Department.
Newtown Youth & Family Services (NYFS) is joining together with the town of Newtown, the school district, the interfaith community and municipal organizations in observance of the first anniversary of 12/14. NYFS will be operating on extended hours from December 13-15, and will also be open for walk-in support services for individuals and families in the community who have been impacted by the Sandy Hook tragedy.
Beginning with the next application period, local seniors applying for town tax relief will likely be asked to sign an asset affidavit. The decision was made following a brief question-and-answer session with Tax Collector Carol Mahoney and Finance Director Robert Tait during the the November 25 Board of Finance meeting. The issue of gaining more clarity regarding applicants’ assets first came up during public discussion last February when finance board Vice Chairman Joseph Kearney asked the town to consider requesting applicants to sign an affidavit promising they are not holding assets that would otherwise be hidden from officials verifying income from candidates’ tax returns. During this week’s meeting, Mr Kearney said the generous town senior tax relief program is not an entitlement, and that if even a few applicants were disqualified based on the amount of assets they possess, it would free up additional funds for more people who legitimately need the benefit.
Nearly a year after Sandy Hook tragically lost one of its biggest commercial traffic generators with the closing of Sandy Hook School, property owners, economic development officials and members of the Sandy Hook Organization for Prosperity (SHOP) are about to launch a marketing initiative with hopes of bringing more shoppers and patrons back to the local village district. Earlier this month, Kimberley Parsons-Whitaker, Associate Director of CT Main Street Center and consultant Tripp Muldrow completed a series of meetings and focus group sessions bringing residents, business owners and community leaders together to brainstorm about promoting Sandy Hook. The resulting multi-tiered marketing program launches during the Sandy Hook tree lighting celebration December 7.
HARTFORD (AP) — With a deadline fast approaching, a Connecticut task force charged with reviewing ways to balance victim privacy with the public’s right to know on Wednesday began discussing proposals offered by members, some hoping to reach a consensus on what to recommend to the General Assembly. One suggested possible compromise is the creation of a new archive or central repository at the Connecticut Freedom of Information Commission where sensitive or graphic information about crimes, such as photos and video, could be reviewed but not recorded or removed. The task force was created earlier this year by the legislature in the wake of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown. The group must report its findings and recommendations to the General Assembly by January 1. The legislation creating the Task Force on Victim Privacy and the Public’s Right to Know says the panel terminates that day or when it submits its report, whichever is later.
Newtown’s police department will review its response to last year’s shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, according to the police chief, who said a report released this week by the lead investigator showed his officers acted properly. The summary report by State’s Attorney Stephen Sedensky III said that nearly six minutes passed between the arrival of the first officer outside the school and the time officers entered the building, but it also said police were operating under the belief there may have been more than one shooter. Police Chief Michael Kehoe said his officers had to make sure several unidentified people encountered outside the school did not pose a threat to police or others.
NEW BRITAIN (AP) — A Connecticut judge has ordered the release of the 911 recordings from the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, but the tapes will not be immediately unsealed. The state’s Freedom of Information Commission ruled in September that the recordings should be provided to The Associated Press, but State’s Attorney Stephen Sedensky III asked for a stay while he appeals that order. New Britain Superior Court Judge Eliot Prescott denied his request Tuesday, November 26, but the tapes remain sealed until December 4 to give the prosecutor a chance to appeal.