A hearing with alternative energy providers will be held by the state Public Utilities Regulatory Authority in the coming weeks. PURA held hearings across the state, including in Brookfield, to learn from consumers about their experiences with alternate electric suppliers and skyrocketing bills.
PURA Chairman Michael Caron previously said the number of complaints has more than doubled from a year ago.
Consumer Counsel Elin Katz said previously that complaints from frustrated customers have been pouring in--some saying the companies are using low introductory rates to attract customers and then switching to variable rates without telling them.
The State Attorney General is also looking into the issue.
A Bethel man has turned himself in to Newtown police on a DUI charge stemming from a December crash. Newtown Police say 62-year old Bruce Clark went to the police station on Monday after learning of a warrant for his arrest. He's also been charged with reckless driving, making a restricted turn and making a false statement.
Police say Clark failed to negotiate a curve and crashed into a utility pole on Sugar Street December 22nd. The truck rolled several times before coming to a rest and Clark had to be extricated from the vehicle.
He was released on bail for a court appearance March 19th.
Newtown police are investigating a vandalism case at the town park on Lake Zoar. Police say they were called on Monday with a report of nine inflatable buoys being cut at Eichler's Cove.
The markers indicate where the swimming area is at the beach. Police say the buoys are valued at $160 each meaning the person did more than $1,400 in property damage.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact Newtown Police at 203-426-5841.
A Town Meeting will be held in Ridgefield soon on the anti-blight law. The Board of Selectmen has scheduled the town meeting for Wednesday the 19th.
The ordinance was proposed to give Ridgefield residents a way to express concerns about the condition of rundown properties. The ordinance provides definitions of what would be considered blight, which includes being dilapidated, having boarded up windows, is a fire hazard or the property is littered with excessive amounts of garbage or abandoned unregistered cars.
It calls for a blight enforcement officer to be part of a Blight Prevention Board and the creation of a Citation Hearing Appeals Board.
A day after holding his first hearing as chair of a Senate panel on surface transportation, Senator Richard Blumenthal this morning will lay out his rail safety priorities. The Connecticut Democrat already says he plans to draw up legislation mandating that regulators better emphasize improved safety and reliability for commuter and freight rail.
This comes as Metro North is under scrutiny for a series of mishaps, accidents and mechanical failures.
Motorists, not just rail riders, are expressing safety concerns over signal issues at intersections along the Danbury Branch.
There is a public hearing tonight in Bethel on proposed changes to the town's Charter. Among the Charter Revision Commission recommendations is that the Board of Selectmen increase from three members to five and their term of service double from two years to four.
Currently $25,000 allocations or greater have to go to a Town Meeting, the Commission is recommending that the number be increased to $50,000. The same changes are being recommended for special appropriations and transfers.
Currently the Board of Finance doesn't have line-item authority for the Boards of Education and Library budgets. The Commission is recommending that they no longer have that authority over other town department budgets and move to a bottom-line basis. The Commission says the rationale behind the recommendation is that the individual departments are better suited to decide how much for what areas is needed.
Another recommendation is that the Annual Town Meeting be moved from May to April.
Tonight's public hearing is at 7pm at Bethel Municipal Center.
A bill to reduce the amount of money that towns must reimburse the state for the cost of resident state troopers for overtime and fringe benefits is being co-sponsored by State Senator Mike McLachlan.
New Fairfield First Selectman Susan Chapman submitted testimony to the legislature's Public Safety Committee in favor of the bill, which calls for the reimbursement for overtime and fringe benefits to be reduced from 100-percent to 70-percent. McLachlan says the proposal aims to help towns, like New Fairfield, make sure that their costs are manageable.
He said the bill will also enhance public safety by helping prevent towns from being forced to reduce their number of resident troopers.
Ridgefield residents will be voting next month on whether to sell 10 acres of the Schlumberger site to a developer for condominium-like housing. The Board of Selectmen last night set the date of the referendum as April 8th.
The selling price of $4-million would be paid by Residential Investments LLC. The proposal is for 24 free standing units of age-restricted housing. The Selectmen held an executive session meeting Thursday afternoon on the contract.
There was consideration given to a proposal from Toll Brothers for the same price, but that was pending approval from the Planning and Zoning Commission.
During routine processing at the Post Office on Wednesday, inspectors notices that a package had a strong odor of marijuana coming from it. The suspicious package contained six pounds of packaged marijuana worth an estimated street value of $20,000.
Postal Inspectors contacted the Danbury Police Department. Officers obtained a search warrant for the address of the intended recipient.
On Wednesday evening, 23-year old Orlando Ellis was arrested. During a search of his Stevens Street apartment, police found more marijuana as well as a scale and packaging material. 180 tablets of Oxycodone, worth an estimated street value of $3,600, were also seized. Several thousand dollars was also recovered as suspected profits from drug sales.
Ellis has been charged with possession of a controlled substance and of a narcotic, possession of a controlled substance and of a narcotic with intent to sell, possession of a controlled substance and of a narcotic with intent to sell within 1,500 feet of public housing and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Ellis is being held on $100,000 bond.
WATERBURY, Conn. (AP) A Southbury lawyer has apologized and agreed to pay $750 over her accusations that town officials in Woodbury and Bethlehem were engaged in fraud in a fight over a high school renovation referendum.
Deborah Stevenson faced a motion for sanctions. She read a statement in court on Wednesday withdrawing remarks accusing town officials and their attorneys of fraud and apologizing to a state marshal who had served the lawsuit on her clients' behalf.
The Republican-American reports lawyers for the towns of Woodbury and Bethlehem asked for sanctions against Stevenson for what they said was slanderous and inflammatory language.
She accused them of perpetrating a fraud on the court for violating an agreement after a Board of Education committee announced plans in December to proceed with the nearly $64 million renovation project.
A former Danbury man has been arrested in Pennsylvania on two risk of injury charges. Bethel Police say 46-year old Nelson Medina was extradited to Connecticut Wednesday. They opened an investigation on allegations that Medina had improper interactions with a child in December.
Police carried out a search warrant and found evidence to support the allegations. Bethel police say the man fled the state when he learned of the investigation.
Medina is also facing a child pornography possession charge. He was due in Danbury Superior Court Thursday for arraignment.
The Westchester Supreme Court has ruled that Putnam County cannot legally prevent the names and addresses of pistol permit holders from being made public in electronic form. The Judge found in favor of Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc., the owner of The Journal News.
Putnam County Clerk Dennis Sant refused to disclose the information requested by Gannett through a Freedom of Information Law. The Journal News published similar information from Rockland and Westchester Counties soon after the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Sant's denial cited exceptions to the law which protects from an unwarranted invasion of privacy and for withholdings in the case of protecting the life or safety of a person. That decision was upheld by County Executive MaryEllen Odell. She said publishing permit holder's addresses would create a dangerous roadmap for those with a criminal intent.
In his decision, Supreme Court Justice Robert Neary said the grounds for denial predated the 2013 amendment which would allow permit holders to file for an exemption to keep their information from becoming public record. The applicants can include active duty or retired police, peace, probation, parole and corrections officers and their spouses, and witnesses or jurors in a criminal proceeding and their spouses.
Putnam County officials say they will likely appeal the decision.c
A second arrest warrant has been obtained by Torrington Police in their investigation of threats made against high schools in Danbury and Stratford. Police say a 19-year old Torrington man is the subject.
His name has not yet been released, but police say he is receiving medical attention at a secure facility.
The man is facing the same charges as 18-year old Natalie Carpenter of Torrington who was arrested Tuesday--conspiracy and criminal attempt to commit assault. Danbury and Stratford have increased security at the schools and notified parents.
Torrington police say no additional arrests are expected.
A Torrington teen has been arrested for making threats against Danbury and Stratford schools.
Police say someone overheard 18-year-old Natalie Carpenter making verbal threats of violence at the High Schools in Danbury and Stratford, and reported it. She was arrested Tuesday at Charlotte Hungerford Hospital on charges of conspiracy to commit assault and criminal attempt to commit assault.
According to court documents, Carpenter had applied to purchase a gun. During her arraignment at Bantam Superior Court on Wednesday it was revealed that police found evidence of plans to shoot or use a weapon at schools. The arrest warrant however was ordered sealed by the courts so no other details are available.
School officials in Danbury and Stratford were notified of the threats Monday. Danbury officials say police stepped up patrols in the area and notified parents.
Carpenter is being held on $300,000 bond.
Police say the investigation is ongoing.
There was a temporary lock down at Wooster School in Danbury Wednesday afternoon.
An art center teacher at Wooster School heard was sounded like shots being fired near Miry Brook Road prompting a temporary lock down around 1pm. Officers did respond to the school but determined there was no issue there.
Police say the sound was likely pyrotechnic shells fired at Danbury Municipal Airport to scare away the geese. The sound likely echoed through the woods behind the school.
Airport officials say for decades they've used this technique to scare birds from areas that could endanger air traffic because its non-lethal.
Ridgefield Library has announced their Grand Opening weekend. May 9th through the 11th has been set as when the new library will be open to the public. The Library will close for a brief period in April for the move from its temporary quarters on Governor Street back to Main Street.
Board of Directors chairman Peter Coffin said in a blog post that it's been 10 years in the works and has involved 13,00 people--planners, designers, volunteers, staff, donors and others.
The weekend will include a ribbon cutting, games, performances and other events to show off the new site.
Friday is Fairfield County Gives day. It's a 24-hour online giving day sponsored by the Fairfield County Community Foundation for non-profits in the area.
One of those participating in the fund drive is the Keeler Tavern Museum. They're hoping to attract Downton Abbey fans. The Ridgefield museum owns the court ensemble worn by architect, Cass Gilbert's wife when the couple was presented to England’s King George V in 1925.
Museum Executive Director Hildi Grob says the gown is in dire need of restoration.
The mauve silk brocade dress--mostly sewn by hand--has lace inserts, clusters of beads and rhinestones and a 6 foot train. The outfit also includes a headdress and fan made with ostrich feathers. The project, along with a custom mannequin for the display, is going to cost $5,000.
The Museum is also repurposing what is now the dining room into a Cass Gilbert Museum showcasing photos, documents and artifacts that tell the story of his life in Ridgefield. He designed the Woolworth Building in New York City and the Supreme Court Building in Washington DC and others.
160 people giving $25 each means the Museum will meet its goal because the Board of Directors has pledged a matching $1,000.
Many non-profits in the Greater Danbury area are participating in this fund drive. They have links on their websites as well as a place on the fcgives.org site to donate to the organization of choice.
CH Booth Library in Newtown has started looking for its new director. The search committee has sent out an email to patrons asking for them to fill out an online survey. The group says one of the first priorities is to have the community involved in the process. CH Booth officials are looking for an enthusiastic and experienced director to lead the library. The survey is confidential.
A date to reopen CH Booth Library in Newtown has been set.
The library is Newtown has been shuttered since a sprinkler pipe burst and caused extensive water damage to the facility. CH Booth officials say the library is currently projected to re-open Saturday, the 8th. In an updated posted on their website, officials said the shelving and furniture are mostly back in place. The computers and electronics are being installed.
The Reference Staff is no longer operating a desk at Edmond Town Hall. They thanked the Board of Managers and staff for their assistance during the library's time at Edmond Town Hall.
Librarians say the outside book drops have reopened, but all programs and activities at the Library remain canceled until the site itself reopens. Late fees will not be charged until the library reopens, and even then there will be an amnesty period.
When requesting items online through the Newtown library catalogue, patrons are asked to continue selecting a pick up location other than CH Booth Library.
Metro-North President Joseph Giulietti has given Connecticut's transportation commissioner a preliminary 100-day improvement plan. Giulietti told Commissioner James Redeker on Monday the first priority is to rebuild a culture of safety. He says Metro-North's priorities are to operate safely, communicate better and restore performance.
Giulietti said Metro-North will re-establish a department to enforce safety policies, a data analysis unit to identify positive and negative trends, and improve programs to train and test employees on their knowledge of safe operations.
He promised at least six meetings with commuters during the 100 days.
Danbury State Senator Mike McLachlan says the plan lacks substance and falls short. He's concerned the Federal Railroad Administration is not doing their job when it comes to Metro North oversight.
McLachlan questioned the Commissioner yesterday on the Danbury branch problems. He was told there's a task force working to fix the signal malfunctions at the grade crossings. But he called that an answer for not giving an answer. He says there is a lot of work that needs to be done.
Governor Malloy said he is disappointed that Metro-North did not provide more specifics. He said Giulietti's letter is a roadmap to better and safer service, riders need to know that there is a plan with benchmarks and deadlines.
The Danbury Public Works Department asked the City Council last night for $200,000 from the contingency fund. Their equipment needed more repairs and upkeep than anticipated because of the amount of use they've gotten so far.
Cars are required to be moved off the streets to help with plowing and the Unified Neighborhood Inspection Team reported last night that 9 have been towed since the start of the year. There were six vehicles unregistered and seemingly abandoned.
Sidewalks not being cleared was another issue. In the Fairfield Ridge neighborhood, residents had to walk in the streets because sidewalks weren't cleared.
That led to 11 properties receiving a notice that tenants are responsible for clearing snow. No fines needed to be issued because all of the instances were taken care of.