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Powassan Tick Virus Scare Is Just That

by marcia chambers | Apr 12, 2015 10:23 am | Comments (2)

Back in 2008 tick researchers detected the Powassan virus in ticks found near Lake Gaillard in North Branford and Lake Success in Bridgeport.  That was seven years ago.

These days researchers are doing more research to test if this type of black-legged deer tick may be found in other locations and to see if it is carrying that virus. That is what researchers do.  The research in Connecticut is being done by the Center for Vector Biology and Zoonotic Disease at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station.

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“Shared Solar” Gets 2nd Look; Utilities Opposed

by Jan Ellen Spiegel/ CT Mirror | Apr 10, 2015 10:59 am

Clean Energy Collective Bill O'Brien Photo Shared solar, a concept that could make solar power available to the 80 percent of homes in Connecticut that are otherwise unsuited for it, appears headed for another rocky run through the state legislature. In the middle of the action is Branford State Rep. Lonnie Reed.

Click here to read the full story.

Another Cell Tower For Branford?

by Diana Stricker | Mar 31, 2015 10:20 am | Comments (3)

Diana Stricker Photo Residents of the Rose Hill Road area of Branford say they don‘t want or need another cell tower because they already have good service. 

That was the sentiment of about 40 people who turned out Monday to voice their opposition to a 134-foot cell tower proposed for their residential area, which is in the Branford Hills section of town.

“We are 100 percent against this tower,” said Jackson Pierre-Louis. “We do not want it. We do not need it.”

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Governor Presses For Greater Long Island Sound Protection

by marcia chambers | Feb 11, 2015 12:40 pm

With Permission Long Island Sound contributes more than $5.5 million for the local economy.  It is home to more than 120 species of finfish and countless varieties of birds and other animals.  Between New York and Connecticut, the Sound’s coastline stretches more than 600 miles, according to a state report. 

But this great natural resource has also been the scene of major environmental battles over the last decade, especially in Branford.

So it was it was fitting that Gov. Dannel P. Malloy came to Branford Monday morning to emphasize his support of legislation called a “Blue Plan,” which is designed to protect the future use of Long Island Sound waters and submerged lands in a number of different ways.

The Blue Plan directs the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and UConn to convene relevant state agencies, academic institutions, and stakeholders to compile an inventory of the natural resources and the human resources of the Long Island Sound, and to use that information to develop a plan to guide future uses of the Sound’s waters and submerged lands.

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Reed Targets Energy Rates, Taxes

by marcia chambers | Jan 12, 2015 9:44 am

Mary Johnson Photo State Rep. Lonnie Reed (D-102), who was sworn in last week to her fourth term in office, wants the state to create innovative laws to reduce skyrocketing electricity rates. She also wants towns to work together on joint projects in order to reduce budgets and the high cost of property taxes, she said. She has other items on her to-do list as well. 

“When it comes to energy policy, skyrocketing electricity rates are bad for consumers, bad for business and bad for economic development of all kinds. We are tackling some huge energy issues this session,” she said in reviewing the reasons why companies often decide not to re-locate in the state of Connecticut.

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“Punishment Fees” Targeted

by marcia chambers | Dec 24, 2014 9:00 am | Comments (3)

Saying innovative conservation policy and electric bill hikes are “on a collision course,” State Rep. Lonnie Reed (pictured) announced this week she will introduce legislation to cap fixed-rate charges on electric bills residents receive each month.

“I support legislation to cap the fixed rate because public policy and electric utility management are on a collision course and in dire need of a course correction. That process needs to start now.” The session begins Jan. 7.

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A Day At The Beach

by Kathryn Cross | Aug 26, 2014 9:34 pm | Comments (1)

Mary Johnson Photo Sun’s out, fun’s in.

What could be better than a day on the beach at Branford Point? That’s the sentiment of many as Branford’s long, hot summer winds down. What’s more, this is the last week of beach activity for kids before the town’s public schools open tomorrow.   

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State Studying Branford’s Xmas Recycling Program

by marcia chambers | Jun 6, 2014 3:28 pm | Comments (1)

With Permission State environmental commissioner Robert Klee met this week with Branford High student Etta Hanlon to learn how towns and perhaps even cities might duplicate Branford’s innovative Christmas paper recycling program.

Hanlon, 15, came up with the idea to recycle Christmas wrappings last year and she and Dan McGowan, the Branford Solid Waste Management director, got the program underway. Branford’s Christmas recycling plan not only helped the environment, it saved Branford money in tipping fees by recycling 18 tons of wrapping paper waste. Click here to read the story.

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Bat Lady’s Message: Create A Bat House!

by Emma Zehner | Jun 2, 2014 7:13 am | Comments (1)

Emma Zehner Photo What is intelligent, goofy, and fun to hang out with? According to Gerri Griswold, a licensed wildlife rehabilitator, these words best describe a bat.

Griswold, who oftentimes goes by the name “the bat lady,” has been working for 21 years to dispel any other notions: “The more you learn about this animal, the more you realize how beautiful it is.”

Given her admiration for bats, it’s fitting that Griswold has been particularly distraught in recent years about the drastic demise of “the most perfect creature.” In the past, Griswold can remember counting 150 to 200 bats at the Winchester Land Trust. Now she feels lucky if she sees one or two on a given night. She attributes much of their disappearance to habitat destruction and the arrival of white nose syndrome, a disease that affects hibernating bats. 

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Inland Wetland Commissioners Ask Tough Questions

by Diana Stricker | May 20, 2014 8:00 am | Comments (1)

Diana Stricker Photo Members of Branford’s Inland Wetland Commission (IW) are concerned that newly created wetlands won’t be wet enough to replace ones that would be disturbed for a possible commercial development project at 250 N. Main St.

“How are you going to support those wetlands?” asked Dr. Richard Orson, an environmental consultant and member of the IW commission. At a recent public hearing, Orson said he fears the project would limit the water available for the proposed 26,000 square feet of wetlands that would be created or enhanced. Orson is pictured at left.

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