MALLOY MAY STEP-IN ON BUDGET
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – Revised estimates show Connecticut’s current budget deficit has grown large enough to potentially trigger a mid-year, budget-cutting plan from Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy. In a letter sent Monday to State Comptroller Kevin Lembo, Malloy’s budget director says the current fiscal year is now projected to be $202.8 million in deficit. Ben Barnes says that’s slightly more than one percent of net appropriations in the state’s main spending account, the threshold requiring Malloy to issue a deficit-mitigation plan. Lembo would first have to confirm the figure. Top Democratic senators said Monday that legislative leaders have agreed to meet early next week for bipartisan discussions to determine next steps regarding the state budget. Barnes says revenue from federal grants, the income and sales taxes are less than anticipated.
MONEY FOR PONEMAH
The state has given the Ponemah Mills renovation 200-thousand dollars to do an environmental assessment on one of the buildings on the site. The money will examine the Taftville building that formally housed the Central Sports retail store. The Norwich Avenue site is owned by One-key, LLC, which is converting the former mill complex into apartments. Phase one of the project, creating 116 units, is almost done. The state grant is part of more than 13-million dollars in grants Governor Dannel Malloy announced Monday to assess, remediate, and revitalize blighted properties in Connecticut.
NOTHING NEW ON ALTERCATION
No new information as of yet regarding a Sunday altercation in Norwich. Police cordoned off a portion of Hamilton Avenue for four hours between the Hamilton Park apartments and the AHEPA senior housing complex as they investigated some sort of disturbance, that reportedly included one person that was armed. Numerous police officers with K-9’s or rifles were seen in the area, as well as at least one ambulance. The road reopened at 8 PM. Police say there is no public safety threat. Arrests are expected.
BIPARTISAN PUSH FOR GUN CONTROL??
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – Several members of Connecticut’s all-Democratic congressional delegation are optimistic that bipartisan support for background check system legislation may be a sign of future cooperation on anti-gun violence legislation. U.S. Sens. Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal and U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Esty all said Monday they’re pleased to have Republicans from other states where mass shootings have occurred co-sponsor the Fix NICS Act. Murphy introduced it in the Senate to fill gaps in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System. Murphy says he doesn’t know if it’s a turning point, but it is significant. The bill creates incentives for states to submit relevant criminal history information to the database, including extra points toward receiving Department of Justice grants. It creates penalties for federal entities that don’t submit data, such as the military.
NL DRUG ARRESTS
New London narcotics officers working in collaboration with state Parole officers arrested three Norwich residents just before 2 PM Thursday after seizing 8 grams of heroin, approximately 19 grams of crack cocaine, around 17 grams of marijuana, a digital scale, cell phones, and some cash. They were identified as 26 year old Nehamiah Carroll, 19-year old Nahkym Carroll and 25-year old Javona Green. Green and Nahkym Carroll are each being held on 49-thousand dollars bond, and are due in court next month. Information regarding a court date for Nehemiah Carroll isn’t available.
ENERGY UPGRADE AT COAST GUARD
NEW LONDON, Conn. (AP) – The U.S. Coast Guard Academy has begun its first major upgrade to save on energy and replace aging utilities at the 85-year-old Connecticut campus. The New London-based academy launched the $72.6 million project Monday. It says that’s the largest single energy savings contract signed by the U.S. Coast Guard and the Department of Homeland Security. Eversource in Connecticut and Ameresco in Massachusetts will perform more than a dozen upgrades. A high-efficiency combined heat and power natural gas plant will replace half-century-old boilers that burn a heavy fuel oil. All laboratory hoods will be replaced. The academy will have the ability to generate up to 60 percent of its own power during an outage. The upgrades are expected to reduce energy costs by more than $2 million annually beginning in 2020.
GUATEMALAN NOT LEAVING
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – A mother of two living in Connecticut has been ordered to return to her native Guatemala, but her attorney says she won’t go. The Hartford Courant reports Miriam Martinez-Lemus’ attorney says a stay of deportation was denied, but Martinez-Lemus didn’t plan on flying to Guatemala Monday. Attorney Glenn Formica says Martinez-Lemus is staying in Stamford, Connecticut, abiding by the nation’s laws and conditions placed by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Formica says if ICE wants to take her from her family, they know where she is. Democratic U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal says he’s working to stop the deportation. Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy urged ICE to reconsider. Martinez-Lemus left Guatemala 25 years ago during violent political unrest. Her daughters are U.S. citizens. The family says one daughter requires constant care for Type 1 diabetes.