FRIDAY MORNING UPDATE

SCRAPYARD PROP UP FOR AUCTION

The Norwich Harbor site of the former Shetucket Iron and Metal Scrapyard will go up for auction on July 29th. A bitter family dispute caused the business to close last year and resulted in several lawsuits. The winning bidder must provide a $25,000 deposit at the sale. The more than three acre property has varying levels of environmental contamination, making it difficult to develop. According to Norwich Mayor Deb Hinchey, these and other issues are why the city has not expressed interest in entering a bid.

NASCAR SAYS NO

The racing season begins tomorrow at New London-Waterford Speedbowl, but it will open without NASCAR sanctioning. The track was stripped of sanctions shortly after owner Bruce Bemer was arrested on charges relating to sex trafficking. Earlier this month, George Whitney, who is leasing the Speedbowl for the season, applied to bring the Whelen All American series back. The auto racing governing body denied that application.

SHOTS FIRED

Last night, shortly after 11, New London Police received multiple calls reporting shots fired in the area of Jay Street. Responding officers located a man with a gunshot wound to the leg, who was alert and conscious. The currently unidentified victim was transported to Lawrence and Memorial Hospital for what were thought to be non-life threatening injuries. The incident appears to be isolated and not random. The police department continues to investigate.

BUDGET PETITIONS CERTIFIED

Mayor Mike Passero

In less than a week, the New London City Council will have the option of reconsidering a 90-million dollar budget that was approved last month. A set of petitions challenging the budget has been certified by the city clerk. New London Mayor Mike Passero says he understands why people are upset with a tax increase of over nine-percent, but the city is not to blame, pointing fingers at state budget cuts and a lack of a state budget at all. Passero says further cuts to the budget would put critical city services at risk. The city council now has the option of passing a revised budget or sending it to referendum in November.

LIBRARY MAKING DO

The executive director of Otis Library in Norwich will have to make adjustments to meet city budget cuts for 2017-2018. Robert Farwell says that the library may have to defer projects, forego staff training, and “strategically” reduce materials. Something he says he won’t do is cut any of Otis’ 29 full and part-time staff members, who he describes as excellent. The $63,000 budget cut was passed by the Norwich City Council when the $123.8 million budget was adopted earlier this month.

SURPRISE!

RICHMOND, R.I. (AP) – Police executing a search warrant at a Rhode Island business ran into an unexpected guest – a five-foot alligator named “Gucci.” Officers had been executing a search-and-seizure warrant June 8 at Richmond smoke shop Pass the Glass when they discovered the animal on the second floor. The alligator’s owner has been charged with a misdemeanor count of marijuana possession and received a citation for failing to obtain the proper permits for the animal.

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