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Moderator Rejects Plea to Explore Town-Costco Costs

by marcia chambers | Mar 16, 2015 12:10 pm | Comments (3)

Marcia Chambers Rep. Douglas Hanlon (D-3rd), the former chair of the Representative Town Meeting’s (RTM) Public Works Committee, has long been concerned about potential town costs for police and fire budgets if a major development comes to town.

So he asked RTM Moderator Dennis Flanagan at last week’s RTM meeting if his concerns might be explored in committee as they have been informally over the years, ever since Costco knocked on Branford’s doors years ago. At issue, Hanlon said, are the town’s potential costs if commissions approve a major development that would bring Costco and seven other stores to 44 acres of land at Exit 56.

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BOS Approves New Senior Home

by Diana Stricker | Mar 5, 2015 2:57 pm | Comments (2)

With Permission “This is the new home for the senior community,” said architect Sandra Vlock as she displayed sketches of how the Community House can be transformed into a blended center for recreation programs and senior citizens. 

The top photo shows the current Church Street entrance, and the conceptual sketch of the new entrance that eliminates the steps and adds a driveway and covered drop-off. Walkways will connect to the proposed patio, gardens and bocce court. The sidewalk will continue around to a new ground-floor entrance and the parking lot along Prospect Street. 

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Community House May Merge With Senior Center

by Marcia Chambers & Diana Stricker | Mar 3, 2015 8:00 pm

If the town’s proposal for a new senior facility is approved Wednesday night at the Board of Selectmen (BOS), seniors will find their new senior “center” will be an expansion to the Community House at 46 Church Street, a place they once called home. 

Before the Canoe Brook Senior Center was opened in 1975, senior activities were held at the Community House from 1962 to 1975. “So this is in a sense returning home, but returning to a new home” said Alex Palluzzi, Jr., the director of the town’s recreation department. Palluzzi oversees the Community House.

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Banca Elected Chairman Of Building Commission

by Diana Stricker | Feb 26, 2015 12:43 pm

Diana Stricker Photo Branford took a significant step forward Wednesday as five members of the newly created Public Building Commission held their organizational meeting at the Community House.

Peter Banca was elected chairman and was heartily congratulated by First Selectman Jamie Cosgrove. (See photo above.) Banca, a Democrat, is a former town treasurer who has had a long career in the banking and finance industry.

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Taking Office, Kennedy Vows To Help Seniors, The Disabled

by marcia chambers | Jan 7, 2015 10:54 am

With Permission As he begins his first term as a state legislator, Ted Kennedy Jr. vowed to help more seniors and disabled people live at home instead of in institutions—and to support changes in campaign-finance laws that helped him get into office.

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Kennedy, Reed And Scanlon Sweep the Shoreline

by Marcia Chambers, Sally E. Bahner & Diana Stricker | Nov 5, 2014 12:17 am

UPDATED—Ted Kennedy Jr. won his first campaign for public office tonight as he captured the State Senate seat in the 12th District with close to 60 percent of the vote.

Branford’s heir to the Kennedy family political dynasty, along with incumbent State Rep. Lonnie Reed and first time General Assembly winner Sean Scanlon kept the Shoreline seats blue.

Kennedy’s fame, Reed’s record and Scanlon’s youthful appeal brought a victory to Democrats in Branford last night. 

Kennedy, 53, an attorney, and Bruce H. Wilson, a businessman, sparred often in recent weeks over campaign financing. In the end, the uproar over how Kennedy financed his campaign seemed to carry little weight with the voters. He is the son of the late U.S. Senator Edward M. Kennedy, who was the youngest brother of President John Kennedy.

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Who’s “Polluting”?

by marcia chambers | Oct 31, 2014 12:16 pm | Comments (3)

Marcia Chambers Photo UPDATE—Ted Kennedy Jr. went on the attack against his opponent Bruce Wilson Jr. Thursday night—for attacking him. Click here to view the debate.

The gloves came off in the final debate between the two candidates for the open 12 State Senate District seat, as Democrat Kennedy accused Republican Wilson of negative campaigning for his repeated criticism of Kennedy’s fundraising tactics.

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Kennedy Won’t Return $94K in Public $$$

by marcia chambers | Oct 29, 2014 11:07 am | Comments (7)

Marcia Chambers Photo

Ted Kennedy Jr.‘s opponent has called on him to return the public money his state senate campaign received given the fact that he also accepted $207,000 in separate “pass-through” money from the state Democratic Party.

Kennedy’s response: No.

The back-and-forth between Democrat Kennedy and Republican Bruce Wilson is the latest chapter in an ongoing money-in-politics disagreement that has marked their campaign for the open 12th State Senate District seat on the Shoreline.

The disagreement has centered on both the letter and the spirit of campaign finance law. Kennedy (pictured above) accepted public-financing in the campaign—and accepted strict limits on donations and spending—as part of what he called a determination to limit the “polluting” influence of money in politics. Then his campaign quietly benefited from a loophole: Kennedy’s family has funneled over $90,000 to the state Democratic Party. The party in turn “passed through” money to support Kennedy’s campaign, twice what the campaign can spend on its own under campaign-finance rules. Kennedy now has a large financial advantage in the race.

 

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The Specter Of Choate Haunts A Campaign Debate

by marcia chambers | Oct 15, 2014 2:08 pm | Comments (4)

Marcia Chambers Photo Choate Rosemary Hall, one of leading private prep schools in the nation, entered the shoreline’s hottest political race of the season Tuesday night—as an epithet.

Republican Bruce Wilson Jr., a retired businessman from Madison, mentioned the private school in a jab at his Democratic opponent, Ted Kennedy Jr., in a campaign debate at Guilford High School. The two candidates are competing for the open 12th State Senate District seat. The district includes the towns of Branford, Durham, Guilford, Killingworth, Madison and North Branford. The debate was moderated by WTNH News8 anchor Chris Velardi (pictured in top photo) and was sponsored by both the Shoreline and Madison Chambers of Commerce.

Education emerged in the debate as a key point of contention.

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Kennedy Accused Of Using “Pass-Through” To “Buy Election”

by marcia chambers | Oct 7, 2014 10:33 am | Comments (4)

The state’s Elections Enforcement Commission (SEEC) has been asked to investigate whether Ted Kennedy, Jr., violated election law when his family and colleagues donated roughly $40,000 to the Democrat State Central Committee, which in turn funneled a similar amount of funds back into Kennedy’s State Senate campaign for staff wages, the hiring of consultants and other costs.

The complaint was filed in Hartford yesterday by Tom Banisch, the Madison Republican Town Committee chairman and the campaign manager for Bruce H. Wilson, Jr., Kennedy’s Republican opponent in the State Senate race in the 12th District. The election will be held Nov. 4. 

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