Archive for Information

FRIDAY MORNING UPDATE

NL RESIDENTS WANT BUDGET REFERENDUM

Rob Pero

Hundreds of New London residents have signed a petition asking that the $49.86 million dollar general government budget go to a citywide referendum vote. That’s because they’re unhappy with a new pay-as-you-throw trash removal program proposal that could be approved by the city council on Monday. The petition contained about 400 signatures. Rob Pero, chairman of the Republican Town Committee, said the city has been less than upfront with citizens about implementation of a program opposed by many residents.

EXPO CENTER DETAILS RELEASED

Mohegan Sun plans to open a 23,000-square-foot interactive arcade, sports bar and restaurant this winter inside its new convention center. “Game On” will feature a luxury bowling alley, ping pong tables, billiards, darts and arcade games in addition to multiple high-definition screens and a 65-foot bar. The new venue will accommodate parties and private events. Tribal officials say a Game On location at Fenway Park in Boston has been successful.

COMPLAINT DISMISSED

Dan Oliverio

Stonington Highway Department employee Dan Oliverio said Thursday he has been told the two month long investigation about complaints that he was being unfairly targeted by Public Works Director Barbara McKrell, found nothing that could substantiate the charges he made. Oliverio said the report did not criticize any action by the town. Former First Selectman Don Maranell criticized a previous comment made by First Selectman Rob Simmons in which he said he had edited a draft of the report submitted by town Labor Attorney Meredith Diette and sent it back to her for revisions. Maranell said he wants to see the original unadulterated report.

TANKER LEAKING

A Bri­tish tanker tor­pe­doed by a Ger­man U-boat off the coast of Long Is­land in 1942 may be leak­ing oil and the U.S. Coast Guard wants to find out. The 423 foot long tanker rests about 170 feet below the water about 30 miles south­east of Shin­necock, N.Y., off Long Is­land’s south shore. Sightings of oil sheens have been reported near the wreck. An un­der­wa­ter as­sess­ment of the ship wreck will be done from June 19th to the 27th to as­sess the con­di­tion of the tanker and any po­ten­tial en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact. The Coast Guard is ask­ing boaters to stay 500 yards away from the dive op­er­a­tion while the as­sess­ment is un­der­way.

KING DEPARTING

Bill King

Stonington school system’s director of operation and facilities is stepping down from his post at the end of this month. Bill King is credited with saving the town large sums of money over the years. King often brought good news to the Board of Finance as the town struggled to keep taxes low and avoid cuts. The Stonington school system has advertised the position and applications will close at the end of business today.

 

THURSDAY EVENING UPDATE

POTENTIAL DROWNING  

Savin Lake

State police are investigating a possible drowning in Lebanon.  Troopers were called to Savin Lake around 10:50 this morning to remove a 72 year old male from the water.  He was taken to Backus Hospital in Norwich where he was pronounced dead.  State police say there is no criminal aspect to the death.  The man’s identity has not been released.

FENTANYL BLAMED FOR DEATHS

Fentanyl caused the deaths of two people in New London in recent months, according to the Chief state medical examiner.  17-year old Luis Roman, a member of the high school wrestling team, died from fentanyl toxicity April 23rd. He was found unresponsive in his Linden Street home, and later died at Lawrence and Memorial Hospital.  Meanwhile, 36-year old Lebro Mei died from acute fentanyl intoxication. His body was found on the former Edgerton School property May 7th. Finally, the medical examiner also determined 31-year old Jonelle Quamme died March 20th from a drug overdose.  She was found in the Ramada Inn in Groton.  All deaths were ruled accidental.

REPRIEVE FOR STAMFORD IMMIGRANT

Nelson Rosales Santos (center) with wife Patricia and son Christian

Advocates for a Stamford immigrant who faces deportation to Honduras despite the need for a kidney transplant say a six-month reprieve won’t be long enough. Supporters, including Democratic Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy rallied Thursday evening in front of Hartford’s federal building in support of Nelson Rosales Santos, who entered the country illegally 30 years ago. Supporters say the 49-year-old would not have immediate access to dialysis in his native country and the deportation would amount to a death sentence. They say his doctors in Connecticut won’t perform the surgery without assurances that he will be in the U.S. for at least a year for follow-up treatments.   Santos has asked President Donald Trump to “be nice,” and says he feels like he and others are being treated worse than animals.  Earlier today, Senator Richard Blumenthal says Santos had been granted a six month stay. He had been slated to return to Honduras on Monday.

VIGIL PLANNED

A candlelight vigil is scheduled tomorrow evening in front of the home where a Sprague man was killed last December.  The family of Steven DeVost say they’re frustrated there hasn’t been an arrest yet in the 32-year old man’s murder, which happened at his Bay Street residence December 14th.  His three children and girlfriend were home at the time. Family members say the vigil is not only to remember Steven, but to keep the murder case in the public eye.  State Police say it’s still an active investigation. The vigil begins at 6:30 PM.

MALLOY HAS WATER PLAN 

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has signed an executive order to implement a new plan for managing Connecticut’s water into the future. The Democratic governor says he ordered the state’s Water Planning Council to implement the plan Thursday. The General Assembly received the plan in January but didn’t act on it.   Some lawmakers and water companies took issue with the plan declaring water a public trust. They questioned whether that would limit resources available to water utilities.  Malloy says his order recommits to the definition of water as a public trust. He says water should be protected for the public’s interest. A 2014 state law directed the water council to create a plan so water resources are managed consistently throughout Connecticut.
Malloy says it’s the first of its kind for Connecticut.

LATEST LABOR NUMBERS

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – A new report shows that Connecticut has gained more than 4,000 jobs while its unemployment rate remained the same.  Thursday’s monthly Department of Labor employment report indicates Connecticut gained 4,100 net jobs in May.  The state’s unemployment rate for that month remained at 4.5 percent. The national unemployment rate was 3.8 percent in May.  Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy says the state’s efforts to retain and grow private sector jobs, while shrinking the size of government, are paying off.   Private sector employment accounted for all of the job growth in May. The government sector lost positions.  The labor department says May’s increase in jobs overcame most of the job losses in March and April. It says there was surprising strength in retail trades and a good showing in financial activities.

LEGAL POT SALES MAY BE DELAYED IN MASS. 

BOSTON (AP) – Prospects for retail pot shops opening for business in Massachusetts by a July 1 target date appear to be dimming. The state’s Cannabis Control Commission met Thursday without issuing the first commercial business licenses under the state’s voter-approved recreational marijuana law. Steven Hoffman, the commission chairman, told reporters that regulators hope to begin issuing licenses “shortly,” but added he couldn’t offer a specific date. Hoffman describes the July 1 date for retail sales given in the law as an “arbitrary deadline” and not a mandate. He says regulators are still awaiting background checks and other information on the more than two dozen entities that have applied for retail or other types of marijuana business licenses. He says, “We are going to do this right.” The panel’s next meeting is Tuesday.

MEDICAL POT MAY GET MORE EXPENSIVE IN RI

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – Rhode Island lawmakers are considering requiring medical marijuana dispensaries to pay 50 times more for their licenses, making the fee the highest in New England by far. The latest budget proposes increasing the annual fee from $5,000 to $250,000.  House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello says it would align Rhode Island with other states and he doesn’t think dispensaries would mind. New Hampshire has charged up to $80,000. The fee is $50,000 in Massachusetts, $25,000 in Vermont, $12,000 in Maine and $5,000 in Connecticut. Chris Reilly, spokesman for the state’s largest dispensary, The Thomas C. Slater Compassion Center, says the shop was more concerned about the governor’s plan to expand the number of licenses than about paying a higher fee. Rhode Island lawmakers decided not to grant more licenses. The House votes on the budget Friday.

THURSDAY MORNING UPDATE

CASINO PLANS UNVEILED

The Mashantucket Pequot-Mohegan partnership planning to build an East Windsor casino announced that it expects to begin construction in the fall. It anticipates opening the nearly 200,000-square-foot facility with roughly 2,000 slot machines and 60 table games in the spring of 2020. A Springield, Massachusetts facility is scheduled to open in less than three months. MGM Springfield is expected to take business from Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun and the idea is the East Windsor casino would blunt that competition.

WOMAN TURNS HERSELF IN

A North Stonington woman has turned herself in to face charges that she was driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs when she struck and killed a pedestrian on Cossoduck Hill Road on July 18, 2017. Janet Henderson was charged with second-degree manslaughter with a motor vehicle, failure to drive in the proper lane and driving under the influence.  She was released on a $50,000 bond and is scheduled to appear June 27th in New London Superior Court.

FIRE CHIEF RETIRING

Nor­wich Fire Chief Ken­neth Scandariato, who leads the city’s paid fire depart­ment and also serves as city emer­gency man­age­ment di­rec­tor, has filed papers to re­tire Sept. 6th. He came to Norwich in 2005 from North Prov­i­dence where he had been fire mar­shal.

RITE-AID CLOSING

The Rite-Aid locations in New London and Waterford are closing and prescription records for both locations have been transferred to the Walgreens at 698 Bank St. in New London. Walgreen spokesperson Phil Caruso said the closure was part of an effort “to help ensure the right stores are in the right locations to create a more focused network of stores that can deliver the greatest value for their customers.” He added most employees affected in the two stores closing would have positions at other locations.

LAWMAKERS WANT ANSWERS FROM CGA

Con­necti­cut law­mak­ers want to know how the Coast Guard plans to ad­dress “racial dis­par­i­ties” at the Coast Guard Academy. Lawmakers said they were “deeply trou­bled” by the re­sults of a re­port that ex­am­ined ed­u­ca­tional out­comes at the academy. They’ve re­quested to re­view all doc­u­ments re­lat­ing to al­le­ga­tions of ha­rass­ment or bul­ly­ing at the academy in New London dur­ing the past three years, the re­sults of any in­ves­ti­ga­tions and the terms of any set­tle­ments reached. They also asked for a brief­ing by July 20th on what steps are be­ing taken to re­spond to re­sults of the Eq­uity Score­card. The Coast Guard service is the first federal academy to utilize the “scorecard” process.

MAN WAS REAL DRUNK

State police say a Lyme man was found to be more than four times over the legal alcohol limit when he blew past a stop sign in his Volvo S60 and crashed into a pickup truck back in September. Police say they found “containers of alcoholic beverages strewn about” inside the car. The driver of the pickup was extricated and transported to Yale-New Haven Hospital. Sean McManus was charged with driving under the influence.  He was released on a $5,000 bond, and is due in court June 21st.