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Cool Events Here & Elsewhere This Weekend

by marcia chambers | Mar 27, 2015 2:25 pm

Well, spring is here, but as everyone knows it is in name only. Regardless, it is time to get out. The town green beckons with a Chili race for the best and that happens outdoors, rain or shine. Indoors, check out Maverick or the great Yale Glee Club or meet up with Jen Payne in Stony Creek. Lots to do this weekend.

Friday, March 27 and Saturday, March 28

“Dr. Doolittle”

The Walsh Intermediate School Musical Theatre Productions will present “Dr. Doolittle,” a wonderful musical play this weekend. Students from grades 5-8 will perform. All tickets are $10. Friday’s performance is at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday’s performance gets underway at 3 p.m. For tickets call 203-418-PLAY (7529). Walsh is located at 185 Damascus Road.

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Biotech in Branford: “Intellect, Exuberance and Money”

by Diana Stricker | Mar 27, 2015 9:40 am

Bill O'Brien Photo Thursday was a day to celebrate the expanding biotech industries in Branford and Connecticut.

“What’s going on in Connecticut today and in Branford, is the basis of a future biotechnological revolution,” said keynote speaker, Mike Hyde, vice president of Jackson Laboratory. The company, which is headquartered in Bar Harbor, Maine, opened a new research facility on the campus of the University of Connecticut Health Center in Farmington in October.

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RTM and BOF Act on Town-School Budget

by marcia chambers | Mar 26, 2015 9:22 am

Marcia Chambers Photo A major initiative in the town-school budget for the 2015-16 fiscal year, a $19.6 million general obligation refunding project, was enthusiastically endorsed by the Representative Town Meeting (RTM) last night in a unanimous bi-partisan vote.

The RTM’s action came two days after the Board of Finance (BOF) approved the same bonding measure along with a $103.6 million town-school budget.  After reflection, discussion and compromise, the BOF reduced the town and school budgets totaling $105.3M to $103.6M Monday night, a $1.8 million cut. The BOF budget that emerged after three days of public hearings reflects an increase of $940,130 or 0.9 percent over last year’s $102.6M budget.

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Branford Woman Gets Probation in Gifting Tables Case

by marcia chambers | Mar 25, 2015 12:18 pm

A 78-year-old Branford woman, an admitted gifting table participant who for three years paid no taxes on the $100,000 she earned at the tables, was sentenced yesterday to one year of probation, the first six months of which she must serve in home confinement. She is the latest woman to be convicted for failing to pay taxes on the bounty she received from what was actually an illegal pyramid scheme.

U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson, who sits in Hartford, also ordered Eileen Brennan to perform 50 hours of community services and pay back taxes, interest and penalties.

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Everyone Wants A Piece of Branford

by Diana Stricker | Mar 25, 2015 8:49 am

Diana Stricker Photo Businesses are transforming in Branford with a new location for the KIA dealership (pictured), a proposed BBQ restaurant at the Indian Neck Garage, and plans for the historic building that features a new antique shop in Stony Creek.

The Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z) gave unanimous approval for two projects last week—- the KIA relocation; and a zoning change needed for the BBQ proposal. The public hearing on the Stony Creek building at 116 Thimble Islands Road will be continued until April.

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Elderly Services Commission Chair Confronts Cosgrove

by Diana Stricker | Mar 24, 2015 9:25 am | Comments (1)

Diana Stricker Photo The chair of the Commission on Elderly Services said last week she wishes the commission had more input into plans for a new senior center before the Board of Selectmen (BOS) voted to approve the project.

The first public presentation was two weeks ago when the BOS unanimously approved renovating and expanding the Community House on Church Street to include a senior center.

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BOF Weighs In On Town-School Budget

by marcia chambers | Mar 23, 2015 1:10 pm

Marcia Chambers Photo The Board of Finance (BOF) budget hearings, three in all last week, take the pulse of the town each year. This year was no different. One overall theme, repeated by school officials, town department heads and others was that in this revaluation year, with a $23 million decrease in the town’s grand list, they were heeding the words of the first selectman to try to come in “flat” for the 2015-16 budget.

Michael Krause, president of the Board of Education (BOE), said, for example, that he had asked Hamlet M. Hernandez, superintendent of schools, to get the budget as close to a 2 percent rise as possible, which for the BOE is considered flat. “We came in at 2.02 percent, “which is the lowest the Board of Education has ever approved,” he told the BOF last week.

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Hernandez Says School Testing Going Well

by Diana Stricker | Mar 21, 2015 9:33 am | Comments (2)

Diana Stricker Photo Branford students are taking the new state-mandated tests this week, but unlike in some school districts, the Branford superintendent says the tests are “going smoothly.”

Superintendent Hamlet Hernandez reported on the tests at Wednesday’s meeting of the Board of Education (BOE). “We were very prepared,” Hernandez said. The reason for that, he said, is that Branford participated in the pilot test program two years ago and in the field test last year.

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Envelope, Please

by marcia chambers | Mar 20, 2015 1:45 pm | Comments (1)

WTNH-POOL Dr. Lishan Wang, who is accused of gunning down a former colleague, Dr. Vanjinder Toor, outside his Branford condo nearly five years ago, learned yesterday that his most recent mental competency report had been filed with the court. 

Superior Court Judge Patrick J. Clifford held a short status hearing for Dr. Wang yesterday because the trial judge in the case is on vacation this month. It was at this hearing that Dr. Wang learned his competency report had been finished and filed with the judge. The report will be a determining factor in whether or not Dr. Wang continues to represent himself at his upcoming murder trial. 

The trial judge, Superior Court Judge Thomas V. O’Keefe, Jr.,had ordered a new mental competency report last month after Thomas J. Ullmann, the head of New Haven’s public defender’s office, asked Judge O’Keefe to revoke Dr. Wang’s status to represent himself at trial—and to substitute Ullmann instead.

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Cool Events Here & Elsewhere This Weekend

by marcia chambers | Mar 20, 2015 10:43 am

Mary Johnson Photo Now you never know about the weather and snow is due today, the first day of spring. But as they say, the show must go on. This weekend combines gardens, food and pets. What could be better? 

Friday, Saturday and Sunday

March 20, March 21 and March 22

Continue reading ‘Cool Events Here & Elsewhere This Weekend’ »

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