(CT Mirror)

HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) – The Connecticut Citizens Defense League (CCDL) hosted a rally Saturday on the steps of the Capitol.   The group called for the event as a way to make sure that lawmakers in Hartford don’t take away their right to bear arms.   Many who show up were legally carrying firearms.   The group says this is their change to speak up for their rights and stand up against anti-gun propaganda.   The event comes just a few weeks after the March For Our Lives was held in Hartford.  During that event participants urged lawmakers to tighten gun laws following a deadly shooting in Parkland.


(Putnam PD)

PUTNAM, CT (WFSB) – Putnam police said no one was injured after a truck crashed into the front of a home on Woodstock Avenue early Saturday.   Officers were called on reports that a single vehicle crash had occurred.  When police arrived they found a pickup truck had smashed through the front porch of a residence.  The truck came to a final rest a short distance away when it struck a stone wall at the corner of Maynard Street and Woodstock Avenue.   Police said witnesses reported the driver of the truck had fled the scene, he was located a short time later thought on the side of the road uninjured.   The driver has been identified by police as 22 year old Ryan Davis of Putnam.  Police said Davis was driving his truck west on Woodstock Road when he went off the right shoulder, through a picket fence and then traveled nearly 150 feet into the porch of 107 Woodstock Ave.  The impact of the crash caused the roof of the porch to collapse.   Police said two families lived in the home, both were there at the time of the crash, but thankfully no one was injured.    Davis was arrested to police after they found several indications he was under the influence of alcohol or drugs.  He was charged with operating under the influence and failure to maintain lane and was released on a $1,500 bond.  He is due in court later this month.

MANCHESTER, CT (WFSB) – One person is dead after a motorcycle collided with a guardrail in Manchester on Saturday afternoon, police said.   The crash took place in the area of 267 Highland Street just after 4 p.m.   Police said they believe the motorcyclist was travelling at a high speed and lost control.   Police said the operator was pronounced dead on scene.   The person’s identification is pending the notification of next of kin.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Potential contenders for Connecticut’s next governor are debating whether the state should eventually pay off $550 million of the capital city’s debt.  Some view it as an unfair taxpayer-funded bailout. Others consider the agreement a step toward Hartford’s eventual fiscal stability.   Some fear that other cash-strapped cities will expect the same treatment from state officials, with independent gubernatorial candidate Oz Griebel calling it “a horrific precedent.”   But Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin, who is exploring a Democratic run for governor, says having the state assume Hartford’s annual debt payments over the next 20 years will help the city avoid bankruptcy, stabilize its finances and focus on developing economic growth.   He contends that’s good for both Hartford and the state.   This year’s governor’s race has attracted more than two dozen candidates.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A proposal to create a family and medical leave insurance program in Connecticut is facing a key vote.   The General Assembly’s Finance Revenue and Bonding Committee is scheduled to vote Tuesday on the legislation, which survived a close vote in the Labor Committee last month.   Under the bill, certain employees could receive up to 12 weeks of wage replacement benefits over a 12-month period for an illness, pregnancy, to care for family members, and for other circumstances. While workers would pay into the system, the legislature’s Office of Fiscal Analysis warns of a “significant annual state cost” beginning next fiscal year to start the program.   Proponents say families can’t afford to take advantage of state and federal unpaid medical leave laws. But critics question whether the program can be financially sustainable.


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A bill to provide guidelines for the adoption of animals used in research is advancing in the Rhode Island General Assembly.   The bill would require educational institutions using dogs or cats for medical research to make animals that are no longer useful for research available for adoption.   It’s moving to the Senate for consideration, after passing the House of Representatives Wednesday.   The “Research Animal Retirement Act” was introduced by Deputy Speaker Charlene Lima, a Democrat. She says most current laws deal with the treatment of animals while they are being used for research.   She says there’s little to govern what happens after the research ends and the animals should be offered for adoption, not euthanized.   Other states have passed similar legislation.


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — State environmental officials in Rhode Island are asking residents to be careful when disposing of ashes.   The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management says now through mid-May is the traditional spring fire period and the improper disposal of wood stove ashes is a frequent cause of wildfires during this season.   Ben Arnold, principal forest ranger, says ashes can hold hot embers for several days. He says if they’re thrown into the woods, they can start a brush fire when grass and leaf litter dry out.   He says ashes should be put into a metal can, thoroughly mixed with water and disposed of in an area that wouldn’t ignite, such as on bare soil.   DEM’s Division of Forest Environment has produced online safety videos about proper ash disposal and safe open burning.


CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — New England hikers and dog lovers may be thinking the subzero winter temperatures will put a dent in this year’s tick population. But think again.  Experts who study the pesky bloodsuckers say the persistent snow cover ensures the ticks will be a headache this spring and summer. They were under a blanket of protected snow.   With increased tick numbers in the past decade, there has been growth in related diseases. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say the number of Lyme disease cases transmitted by blacklegged ticks has increased 30 percent from a decade ago.   Health officials are already urging anyone spending time outdoors to take precautions.

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