THURSDAY EVENING UPDATE

FIRST GUBERNATORIAL Q-POLL

Ned Lamont and Bob Stefanowski will go head-to-head in the governor’s race in November. (WFSB)

Democrat Ned Lamont holds an early double-digit lead in the gubernatorial race in Connecticut, according to the first Quinnipiac University poll of the campaign season.    Lamont holds a 13-percentage point advantage over Republican Bob Stefanowski, with Independent Oz Griebel and Libertarian Rod Hanscomb far back in the pack.   Poll Director Doug Schwartz says Lamont is especially drawing support from women voters. Schwartz says most of those polled say the low approval ratings of the President and Governor Dannel Malloy will not affect who they’ll vote for in the Governor’s race.  Most poll respondents favor an elimination of the state income tax, but don’t believe Stefanowski’s plan to end it in eight years is realistic.

TAXES BIG CAMPAIGN ISSUE

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – The issue of taxes is heating up Connecticut’s election, with the two major party candidates proposing dueling plans to either eliminate the income tax or reduce local property taxes. Democratic businessman Ned Lamont of Greenwich on Thursday unveiled his plan to restore and expand the popular property tax credit against the personal income tax in a way that targets low- and middle-class families. The plan would be phased in over four years.  The average beneficiary would receive a $700 tax cut in Lamont’s second, two-year budget proposal. Republican businessman Bob Stefanowski of Madison has called for eliminating the personal income tax over eight years. The tax generates roughly $9.7 billion a year. A Quinnipiac University Poll released Thursday shows voters support eliminating the income tax, but question whether it’s doable.

TEXT 911 IS HERE

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – Connecticut residents can now use text messages to reach 911 emergency dispatchers. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced Thursday that the state has launched the text-to-911 service as part of a new emergency communications system.  Officials say voice calls to 911 are still the best and fastest way to contact emergency services. The text service is aimed at people who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability. It’s also intended for when it’s unsafe to place a voice call, such as during home invasions or acts of domestic violence. Authorities say to use the new service, enter 911 into the “to” or “recipient” field, text a brief message that includes the location of the emergency and which emergency services are needed and then follow incoming directions.

NORWICH POLICE INVESTIGATE GUN SHOTS

The Norwich Police Department received a call just after 7:30 Wednesday morning of shots fired from the area of East Baltic Street. An investigation revealed that a dispute between several males escalated when a subject fired at least three shots from a handgun. One males was struck in the leg but his injuries were determined to be non-life threatening. This investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is encouraged to call Detective Wilbur of the Norwich Police Department Detective Division as 860-886-5561 ext. 3154.

MALLOY SPEAKING OUT AGAINST PRESIDENT’S NEW TAX RULES

Gov. Dannel Malloy

Connecticut’s governor is criticizing the Trump administration’s newly released rules to prevent people in high-tax states from skirting a cap on state and local deductions.   The state is among those where residents could see substantial increases in their federal tax bills next spring because of the $10,000 cap.  Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, a Democrat, says the Treasury Department is attempting to take away the ability of states like Connecticut to mitigate what he calls the harmful effects of the tax law passed last year by Republicans in Congress and signed by President Donald Trump. The states of Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey and New York already have sued the federal government over the deduction cap, asserting that it’s aimed at hurting a group of Democratic states and tramples on their constitutional budget-making authority.

SECOND ARREST IN ROBBERY 

A November, 2017 gunpoint robbery in Thompson has led to a second arrest.   19-year old Jeffrey Embair of Webster, Massachusetts has been charged with first-degree robbery and sixth-degree larceny.  State Police claim Embair and 22-year old Zachary Zola of Worcester, Mass.  robbed a 17-year old Thompson resident at Riverside Park.  The alleged victim believed the two suspects stole his moped outside the Thompson Public Library. Embair and Zola are each being held on 65-thousand dollar bonds. Zola is to appear in court Friday.

GETTING HIGH AT THE BEACH

A Thompson man faces a September 4th court date after being charged with doing drugs on a Killingly beach this week.  State police say 59-year old Frank Correia was laying on a blanket at Quinebaug Lake State Park with marijuana and drug paraphernalia in plain view.  Police found fentanyl in the suspect’s possession as well.   Police say they were alerted to the situation by a caller who said there were two people at the beach who appeared to be under the influence.

PLEDGE CONTROVERSY

NEW HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – An attempt to have a Connecticut town’s education board begin each meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance has led to the resignation of the board’s chairman who said he doesn’t want to be forced to recite the pledge. New Hartford Board of Education Chairman Josh Adams resigned Wednesday after opposing a vote by the board’s other eight members Tuesday to require each meeting begin with the pledge. The Republican-American reports the measure was introduced as a way to try to have everyone “on the same page” for at least one minute. Republican board member Tom Buzzi says the measure was not meant to be contentious. Adams, a Democrat, says he shouldn’t be forced to express dedication to ideals he lives by.  All members except Adams voted for the measure.

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