SPECIAL ED SOLUTIONS SOUGHT
More discussion last night as to what can be done to bring down special education costs in the state. A public forum on the issue is held at Norwich City Hall, just over a month after a similar gathering was held there. Roughly 25 people attended, with most of them from local and state government and education. Mystic attorney Andrew Feinstein represents parents of special-ed students. He says one way to cut costs is consolidation of services. Chaplin state representative Doug Dubitsky says the state’s minimum budget requirement for education has to be changed. Lawmakers say changes to the budget mandate are being considered. Another special-ed forum is scheduled for next month at City Hall.
UNH DROPPING LYME ACADEMY
The University of New Haven will no longer offer degree-granting programs at the Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts after the 2018-19 school year. Students, alumni and faculty are shocked, saddened and angry. The Lyme Board of Trustees will retain ownership of the campus facilities and may attempt to develop plans to reconstitute the academy as a non-degree community arts program in the future. A Lyme Transition Task Force is looking at options for students majoring in drawing, painting and sculpture, according to a press release from the university. It also has established a transition office.
BONDING REQUEST DISCUSSION TODAY
You can talk about a proposed $8.47 million economic development bond Norwich officials would like to get on the Nov. 6 ballot . The new bond would expand the economic revitalization program to specific areas outside downtown. It also would include $890,000 for “city guided development,” allowing city officials to target specific properties. Half the new money would be dedicated for downtown. Mayor Peter Nystrom and Norwich Community Development Corporation President Robert Mills will hold an open discussion at noon today in the Otis Library community room. A public hearing will be held Monday night before the council vote.
MAN GETS FOUR YEARS
Michael Callanan, formerly of East Lyme, had pleaded no contest to threatening to rape the foster mother of his infant child and shoot the foster father. He was accused of called them hundreds of times, threatening police officers and their families, and to spitting on an attorney following a family court proceeding. Callanan was sentenced to four years in prison followed by three years of probation, during which he will be monitored electronically. He was ordered to undergo a psychiatric evaluation and treatment while on probation and prohibited from using drugs and alcohol. He was also issued a lifetime protective order that prohibits him from having contact with the victims.
FOXWOODS’ REVENUE DOWN
Foxwoods Resort Casino has reported net revenues in the quarter ending June 30th were down 3.3 percent over the same period last year. Gross gaming revenues in the quarter were also down 3.1 percent while gross non-gaming revenues were down 4.6 percent. During the quarter, a 2.1 percent increase in slot-machine revenue was offset by a 14 percent decline in table-games revenue.