Lonnie Reed Won’t Seek Reelection

by marcia chambers | Apr 23, 2018 8:50 am | Comments (1)

With PermissionLonnie Reed, who has served as Branford’s State Representative for the 102nd District for the last decade, will not seek a sixth term in office in the November election.

During her tenure, she has been instrumental in bringing biotech businesses to Connecticut and Branford, in preserving Long Island Sound and in making energy cleaner for the environment. She has long promoted renewable energy and led the way for a new law to protect consumers from electric supplier gimmicks that spike prices. Most recently she helped obtain state funds for the costs of a renovated and expanded Walsh Intermediate School and for the Blackstone Memorial Library.

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Cool Events This Weekend, Here & Beyond

by Sally E. Bahner | Apr 20, 2018 9:23 am

A bit of a history lesson. Earth Day was first celebrated in 1970 as a national day to focus on the environment. According to earthday.org, Sen. Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin founded the event in response to a massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California, in 1969. People were driving gas guzzlers and there was an increasing awareness of the problems associated with air and water pollution. Twenty million Americans took to the streets on April 22, 1970, in a movement that led to environmental concerns gaining national attention and resulting in protective legislation. Those concerns from 48 years ago are still in the forefront today as policy rollbacks are underway at the EPA. Make a difference this weekend by taking part in some of the local events listed below. 

Saturday, April 21

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Needed For American Elections: Trust

by Diana Stricker | Apr 18, 2018 8:26 am | Comments (2)

Diana Stricker PhotoConnecticut’s top election official says the biggest repercussion from Russian hacking is the distrust it has created in the public’s perception of the election system.

“Educating the public is critically needed right now, about what’s going on with the voting system,” said Secretary of State Denise Merrill (pictured above). She was the keynote speaker during a forum Saturday sponsored by both the League of Women Voters of the East Shore, and Connecticut Shoreline Indivisible.  The event was televised by Branford’s BCTV. 

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State Bond Commission Approves $1M Grant for Blackstone Library

by marcia chambers | Apr 14, 2018 8:56 am

With PermissionFor Blackstone Library leaders, Friday was one of those great days. In the morning, Library Director Karen Jensen and Blackstone Board Chair Andy McKirdy were on hand in Hartford with State Rep. Lonnie Reed (pictured) when the State Bond Commission formally approved a $1 million library construction grant.

Bill O'Brien PhotoIn the afternoon, they were back at the Blackstone to announce that individual donations to the library’s capital campaign reached the amount needed to qualify for the Branford Community Foundation’s (BCF) match of $100,000. The $100,000 grant, to be distributed over four years, is the largest single contribution to an organization in the history of the BCF.

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Branford’s $112M Town-School Budget Arrives at RTM

by Marcia Chambers & Sally E. Bahner | Apr 11, 2018 8:52 am

Sally E. Bahner PhotoA $112M town-school budget approved by the Board of Finance (pictured) formally heads to the Representative Town Meeting (RTM) tonight with a tiny mill rate increase, following the pattern of a number of shoreline communities this year.

The RTM will examine the RTM budget as it seeks to find additional ways to decrease it. The formal process begins at the RTM meeting tonight at Fire Headquarters at 8 p.m. But the RTM “cannot increase it,” Joseph Mooney, chair of the BOF, said late last month when the BOF unanimously adopted it. Under state law, the BOF consists of three Democrats and three Republicans. At this point, the mill rate would increase a smidgen from 28.47 mills to 28.67 mills over the previous rate. But it might go lower.

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Kids Lead the Way at Guilford March for Our Lives

by Sally E. Bahner & Mary Johnson | Mar 26, 2018 8:11 am

Mary Johnson PhotoFrom the stage, State Rep. Lonnie Reed of Branford took in the huge crowd at Saturday’s “March for Our Lives” on the Guilford green. She served as emcee for the event. “It looks like Woodstock,” she said.

Mary Johnson Photo“You all look beautiful!” Reed (pictured) declared.

Along the shoreline, the focus of the march was Guilford, where some 2,000 people packed the green for a day of powerful words and music that was as poignant as it was uplifting.

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P&Z Approves New Deadlines for PDD’s

by Diana Stricker | Mar 19, 2018 7:49 am

File Photo“It effectively resets the clock,” said Town Planner Harry Smith after the Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission voted 4-1 Thursday to approve zoning regulation changes for Planned Development Districts (PDDs).

The time limit change was requested by developers Charles E. Weber Jr. and Al Secondino, whose property is part of the 44-acre PDD at Exit 56. The proposed commercial complex includes seven retail buildings and it also included Costco before the retailer withdrew in 2017.

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Bridget Judd: St. Patrick’s Day Parade Queen

by Bill O'Brien | Mar 17, 2018 8:30 am

Bill O'Brien PhotoTo say that Branfordite Bridget Judd (pictured) has been very busy since early February would be an understatement. “The past month and a half have been a whirlwind,” said the 2018 Greater New Haven St. Patrick’s Day Parade Queen. “The whole experience is like nothing I’ve ever experienced before,” she said in an interview as St. Patrick’s Day formally arrived today. 

Judd, a Branford native, who is the daughter of Tim and Kristin Judd, lives in Short Beach. She also works as a paraprofessional at the John B. Sliney Elementary School. She’s been busy since her selection as Queen on Feb. 3 at the New Haven Gaelic Football and Hurling Club in East Haven. She is a Gaelic football player.

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Shoreline Organizes for “March For Our Lives”

by Sally E. Bahner | Mar 15, 2018 7:33 am | Comments (1)

With PermissionGuilford is becoming the shoreline nexus for the “March For Our Lives” event planned for Saturday, March 24, from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. It’s part of growing, worldwide effort, driven by social media, to call attention to the lives lost to gun violence and the need for stricter legislation. To date, more than 700 events are expected to take place.

Plans coalesced all over the country for marches in response to the shootings Feb. 14 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Guilford resident Frank Blackwell (top photo), a Guilford-based photographer, writer, and corporate filmmaker, began planning for the event immediately after the shooting.

“March For Our Lives” follows on the heels of the March 14 National School Walkout for Gun Control in which students all over the country and Washington, D.C., walked out of classes yesterday, calling for stronger gun control laws on the one-month anniversary of the Parkland shooting.



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Committee Dishes on Budget; BOE Votes to Approve

by Sally E. Bahner | Mar 12, 2018 8:10 am | Comments (1)

Sally E. Bahner PhotoThe Board of Education (BOE) voted unanimously to approve to FY 2019-2020 budget at its Feb. 28 meeting. Three board members were absent, however – John O’Connor, Ellen Michaels, and Joanne Borrus.

The school budget will go to the Board of Finance (BOF) this week for discussion and approval, then to the Representative Town Meeting for final approval.

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