From ghost stories on Main Street to hundreds of spooky goblins flitting around Sandy Hook, the ramp-up to Halloween 2015 is in full swing — with bubbling anticipation of Newtown’s main event on October 31 becoming palpable around the community. A heavy police presence is anticipated on Main Street for Saturday evening to help control traffic as thousands of Halloween revelers converge to enjoy the costumes, candy, and more than a few homes outfitted with extravagantly spooky décor. Newtown Police, the Connecticut Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection, as well as AAA of Southern New England all issued safety advisories for Halloween.
Jim Wadleigh, CEO of Access Health CT (AHCT), has released a checklist for residents in preparation for Connecticut’s third open enrollment, which begins Sunday, November 1, and runs through Sunday, January 31, 2016. “With in-person navigators, online assisters, and other consumer tools, AHCT is making it more efficient for consumers to choose a health care plan that works best for them,” said Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman, chair of the AHCT Board. “With the announcement that Connecticut’s uninsured rate is at historic lows — and among the lowest in the nation — our focus is on building a healthier state through expanding our reach and retaining consumers.”
Every Newtowner who exercises their privilege to vote at local polls on November 3 can pick up an “I Voted“ sticker and spend the rest of Election Day enjoying the fruits of a partnership between local businesses and Support Our Schools (SOS), an educational advocacy group.SOS supports the best interests of Newtown’s children and a high quality education platform in Newtown. “As a nonpartisan organization, we are not endorsing any party or candidate, but rather are interested in encouraging all Newtown citizens to fulfill their civic duty and make their voices heard at the polls,” said spokesperson Erin Arcario. “We asked local businesses to participate in this activity by discounting services and/or goods at 10 percent for customers presenting the ‘I voted’ sticker on November 3,” she added.
After nearly eight hours of line-by-line scrutiny over the course of two meetings, the Legislative Council completed its administrative review of a draft charter revision during a special meeting October 28. The panel, with several members absent, also held a brief public hearing with no comments offered, and subsequently approved updates to Newtown’s alarm and purchasing ordinances.
Scott Driscoll of Internet Safety Concepts gave the first of multiple presentations titled “Empowering Smart Online Choices” on Tuesday, October 13, at Reed Intermediate School for students. He later shared his presentation with Newtown Middle School students and with district parents during an evening event at C.H. Booth Library.
The school district’s PTAs, PTSA, and the Newtown Prevention council sponsored the presentations.
Mr Driscoll is a former youth officer and member of the federal Internet Crimes Against Children Task force, with more than 23 years of law enforcement and child safety advocacy behind him.
State police said they received word on October 25 from officials at the state’s high-security Garner Correctional Institution at 50 Nunnawauk Road explaining that a correction officer had been assaulted by an inmate. State police responded to the prison to investigate and then charged inmate Adal Osorio, 32, with assault on a peace officer and with failure to submit to fingerprinting. State police allege that Osorio threw a cup of urine at a 29-year-old male correction officer.
A foundation for a branch office of the Newtown Savings Bank, foreground, has been poured at The Village at Lexington Gardens, a retail/office complex now under construction at 30-32 Church Hill Road. The multi-building complex will include 60,500 square feet of new commercial space, plus 16,000 square feet of renovated commercial space. A four-way traffic signal will control the intersection formed by the complex’s driveway, Church Hill Road, and The Boulevard.
The town’s drive to have residents adopt the many cats being held at its Fairfield Hills animal shelter has made some progress, with people adopting five cats from the facility after reading about the situation in a recent Newtown Bee article. Police Sergeant Aaron Bahamonde, who supervises municipal animal control for the police department, said five cats were adopted by people who learned of the situation through the story published on October 22.
A police officer will be stationed inside a vehicle at the Main Street flagpole intersection during weekday morning and evening rush periods, as staffing permits, according to police Captain Joe Rios. The police officer would not direct traffic, but would monitor traffic flow. The new plan stems from public discussion on the hazards of Main Street traffic generally and flagpole intersection traffic in particular at a Police Commission “open dialogue” session held on Monday, October 26.
Inland Wetlands Commission members are urging the developer of a multibuilding rental apartment complex, which is part of a major mixed-use project proposed for Hawleyville, to find some ways to reduce the physical impact of the apartments on the terrain. The mixed-use project, which is proposed by two developers, would include a 180-unit apartment complex in six multistory buildings on 21 acres, a diner on four acres, and a church on 17 acres. The three-pronged development is proposed for an overall 42 acres lying west of Hawleyville Road and south of the Exit 9 interchange of Interstate 84. Each of the six apartment buildings would contain 30 rental units.