A heavy dump truck traveling northward on South Main Street, just north of its intersection with Cold Spring Road, drove off the right side of the road and shattered a utility pole at its base Wednesday morning. Police then closed a half-mile section of South Main Street to through-traffic for about eight hours while utility repairs were underway.
Planning and Zoning Commission members are continuing their long-running review of a major mixed-use complex proposed for a 42-acre site in Hawleyville, which would include a 180-unit rental apartment complex on 21 acres, a diner on four acres, and a church on 17 acres. The commission recently reviewed certain developmental details during dual public hearings on the complex, which is proposed by two developers for the site that lies south of the Exit 9 interchange of Interstate 84 and west of Hawleyville Road.
Technically, the long completed Newtown High School addition is not yet complete. According to Public Building and Site Commission Chairman Robert Mitchell, a pesky leak that has confounded school maintenance and plant personnel, contractors, and consultants alike continues to occasionally drip pools of water into the rear cafetorium area of the addition. Mr Mitchell told The Newtown Bee, however, that officials closely monitoring the difficult-to-pin-down water intrusions are certain it is happening because of a failure to complete the installation of flashing behind a primary exterior wall.
After learning that hiring an investigator would cost roughly $15,000 to $20,000 to look into leaked board communications, the Board of Education decided at a special meeting on Wednesday, November 11, to look into both filing a Freedom of Information “complaint” and to refer the entire situation to the local Board of Ethics. The decision came after discussions at multiple meetings on the subject of an e-mail and a screenshot of a text message recently shared on social media. BOE Secretary Kathy Hamilton and board member David Freedman have both said they had shared a text message and email, respectively, but both have also stated they did not share what the board has referred to as "leaked communications" with the person who posted the information on social media, though neither revealed with whom they did share the information.
Democratic Registrar of Voters LeReine Frampton released the results of a District 2 Legislative Council recount, which was completed late in the afternoon of November 5. Ms Frampton notified The Newtown Bee on election night that the difference of 19 votes separating Republican Dan Wiedemann and Democrat Jennifer Padilla would force a recount unless Ms Padilla waived the procedure, which she did not. Once the results were tallied, Ms Frampton said each candidate lost a single vote off the initial count, but the outcome remained unchanged.
In the event of a tie vote, should Democrat James Gaston chair the newly elected Board of Finance based on the fact that he received the most votes on November 3? Or does Republican John Godin deserve consideration after being reelected as the finance board’s only incumbent? Or might any of the board’s newcomers best serve to lead this highly influential and primarily advisory panel? While these questions will be left unanswered until after the new slate of elected officials take office December 1, one thing is certain. There is at least a potential for a split vote on the 3-3 Board of Finance when it comes to electing a chair, and no formal provision to resolve such a stalemate according to Town Attorney David Grogins.
Veterans were welcomed into schools across the district on Wednesday, November 11, for celebrations and assemblies commemorating Veterans Day. At Newtown High School veterans enjoyed a lunch catered by the high school’s culinary students before an assembly in the school’s auditorium. Members of the NHS Chamber Choir and the NHS Band performed songs during the ceremony, like the “Star Spangled Banner,” and “American Salute.”
Members of the Board of Education, First Selectman Pat Llodra, Superintendent of Schools Joseph V. Erardi Jr, Assistant Superintendent of Schools Jean M. Evans Davila, and State Senator Tony Hwang were in attendance along with the invited veterans and speakers, including former US Marines Jason Georgetti and Ray Corbo, who both spoke during the assembly.
On Veterans Day, Mr Corbo said, people gather to honor and share gratitude for the sacrifices made by veterans.
Veterans stood to be recognized for serving in different armed conflicts, starting with World War II.
With a hand across her heart, Donna Monteleone opened Wednesday’s Veterans Day ceremony with a prayer for the “devotion of those who have fought for freedom, and those who laid down their lives.” Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 308 chaplain and also a veteran, Ms Monteleone addressed a crowd of post members and supporters whose faces and service spanned decades. Korean War veteran George Lockwood Sr stood just a few paces away from younger veterans, including current US Marine Corps Sergeant Dustin Gill.
An accident shortly after 8 am this morning has led to the closure of an approximate 800-yard section of South Main Street. A Botsford firefighter encountered the incident, which was described as a truck vs pole accident in the area of Cold Spring Road. Roadways were wet this morning with intermittent rain. The driver of the industrial sized dump truck that struck a pole was reportedly uninjured. The pole that was struck was on the east side of South Main Street, approximately 75 yards south of the roadway’s intersection with Cold Spring Road.