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Housing Authority, Friends of Ryan Park in tug of war over Washington Village site changes

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From left, Norwalk Housing Authority Commissioners Larry Katz, the Rev. Jeffery Ingraham and Board Chairman Cesar Ramirez listen to Diane Lauricella on Thursday in NHA’s Monroe Street office.

NORWALK, Conn. – There isn’t enough time to “move the pieces around” at Washington Village without jeopardizing the $30 million federal grant in support of the project, Norwalk Housing Authority Executive Director Curtis Law said Thursday, while an ardent opponent of the current plan emphatically stated that change is, indeed, possible.

“I read the Choice Neighborhoods project,” Diane Lauricella said at Thursday’s NHA meeting. “As a consultant, I look at these detailed words and it is not true that you cannot amend it. It would not take – it would be mediation, it would be a compromise. Nobody wants to talk about viable alternatives and that is a darn shame because it’s the staff that are holding up the process, not the Friends of Ryan Park.”

A plan to "flip" the current Washington Village proposal.

A plan to “flip” the current Washington Village proposal.

Continue reading Housing Authority, Friends of Ryan Park in tug of war over Washington Village site changes

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Final step in Norwalk sidewalk repair is laid with new ordinance

NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk, you have a new sidewalk ordinance. The upshot is that if the city fixes the sidewalk in front of your property, you have a maximum of 10 years to pay the city back.

The Common Council on Tuesday passed the ordinance amid many kudos flying back and forth, with acknowledgements of the amount of time that was put in and a nod to the seeming impossibility of the feat a year ago. Continue reading Final step in Norwalk sidewalk repair is laid with new ordinance

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A statement regarding Rep. Morris’ claim that he was racially profiled

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Sgt. David R. Orr is the president  of the Norwalk Police Union, AFSCME Local 1727

To the Editor:

A statement regarding CT State Rep. Bruce Morris’ claim that he was racially profiled:

On March 20, 2015, Connecticut State Representative Bruce Morris made comments about a recent interaction he had with a police officer. On that date, during a hearing of the Judiciary Committee, Mr. Morris made a claim that he was recently the victim of racial profiling when he was stopped by a Norwalk Police Officer. Mr. Morris claimed that he was returning home from late night meetings in Hartford, and that he had just gotten off of the highway and “was in an area of town that isn’t HIS area of town” when he was stopped by the officer. Mr. Morris claimed that he is certain he hadn’t done anything wrong to justify being stopped.

Continue reading A statement regarding Rep. Morris’ claim that he was racially profiled

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Norwalk Parking Authority eyes Wall Street’s impending parking woes

Norwalk Parking

Norwalk Parking Authority member Dick Brescia talks about Wall Street on Wednesday in the Maritime Garage.

NORWALK, Conn. – The development that seems certain for the Wall Street area is going to carry a surprise issue for Norwalk as the “empty space” that has plagued the area suddenly becomes “no space left” in terms of parking, Parking Authority member Dick Brescia said Wednesday.

Brescia led a discussion of Wall Street parking issues at the Parking Authority meeting, where Redevelopment Agency Executive Director Tim Sheehan also chimed in with concern.

“Spaces over time are going to begin to disappear,” Sheehan said. “The value of on-street parking and the garage parking is going to quickly escalate. Then the whole premise of what is being put forward is that we want to be in front of that and trying to incrementally advance that rather than being on the back end of it.” Continue reading Norwalk Parking Authority eyes Wall Street’s impending parking woes

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Norwalk mall developer: Is there an app for that (parking issue)?

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A PowerPoint slide shows a schematic of the possible traffic design around a possible mall on West Avenue.

 

NORWALK, Conn. – One side effect of a mall in SoNo might be the end of free parking at Matthews Park, General Growth Properties Senior Developer Doug Adams said Wednesday.

“I think at the end of the day Matthews Park needs to charge for parking and maybe to validate museums or whatever needs to be worked out. Because otherwise you will have hundreds of people on a nice day parking there and walking,” Adams said to the Parking Authority as he discussed parking issues in relation to the mall, including the idea that the mall’s parking pricing would not undercut the city’s parking rates. Continue reading Norwalk mall developer: Is there an app for that (parking issue)?

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Adams delivers ETA on traffic study for SoNo mall

NORWALK, Conn. – The much talked-about traffic study for the potential SoNo mall will probably be done within about three months, General Growth Properties Senior Developer Doug Adams said Wednesday.

As some Norwalkers clamour for a traffic study for the mall now being pushed for the property at the intersection of Interstate 95 and West Avenue, NancyOnNorwalk asked Adams what made GGP confident enough to spend $35 million to buy the property, knowing, as Adams has said, that a mall would not be successful if customers find gridlock. Continue reading Adams delivers ETA on traffic study for SoNo mall

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Opinion: It’s way past time to put BOE racism claims to bed

Mark Chapman

Mark Chapman

Mark Chapman is NancyOnNorwalk’s editor.

The absurdity of allowing racism claims to linger against certain members of the Board of Education by at least two other members is obvious to most of the community.

The claims of racism by BoE members Shirley Mosby, an at-large Democrat who cannot be held accountable by voters until 2017, and Migdalia Rivas, (D-District B), whose term expires in November, have been hanging in the air like a pollution cloud for 10 months. And, while Jack Chiaramonte may have demonstrated part of what those charges were all about, no one knows for sure because the finger-pointers aren’t talking.

Continue reading Opinion: It’s way past time to put BOE racism claims to bed

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Opinion: BoE accusers must bring any evidence forward now

Bruce Kimmel

Bruce Kimmel

Bruce Kimmel (D-At-Large) is a member of Norwalk’s Common Council. 

It’s been about 10 months since the Norwalk Board of Education was rocked with two political bombshells. First, African-American members of the board accused the leadership of being racist and disrespectful, but did not present any evidence to back up the explosive charges. Then, a white board member made a statement that people believed was racist. Meanwhile, a new and highly respected superintendent left for greener and calmer pastures. Until recently, these charges and counter-charges have been allowed to fester, which did not bode well for the city’s public school children and their families.

Continue reading Opinion: BoE accusers must bring any evidence forward now

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Opinion: It is time to place the public good ahead of the privileged few

Timothy Herbst

Timothy Herbst

Timothy Herbst is the first selectman of Trumbull.

Connecticut residents have weathered their fair share of corruption in government, and as a result hold a certain amount of healthy skepticism for those who hold public office. This is why I am deeply troubled by efforts being undertaken by some elected officials in Bridgeport and Hartford to obfuscate legislation that would prevent a privileged few from financially benefiting from their elected office.

Continue reading Opinion: It is time to place the public good ahead of the privileged few

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Norwalk Council sends SoNo mall project into design phase

NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk officially opened its arms Tuesday to a potential mall in Sono as the Common Council issued a unanimous endorsement of the “beginning step” – an outline for a new Land Disposition Agreement (LDA) on the 95/7 site.

The vote on the LDA parameters was preceded by universal praise for Norwalk’s new way of doing business, a prayer that the “joint committee” approach will be continued. The “cross pollination worked,” Planning Committee Chairman Doug Hempstead (R-At Large) said, remarking that the Council had made the 90-day deadline he had set for reaching this point. Continue reading Norwalk Council sends SoNo mall project into design phase

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Meek set to step into Chiaramonte’s shoes pronto

Bryan Meek has been chosen to fill the unexpired Board of Education term of Jack Chiaramonte, who resigned Tuesday.

Bryan Meek has been chosen to fill the unexpired Board of Education term of Jack Chiaramonte, who resigned Tuesday. (File photo)

Updated, 3:38 p.m., comment from RTC District D Chairman John Romano.

NORWALK, Conn. – Bryan Meek has been chosen by District D Republicans to replace Jack Chiaramonte on the Board of Education, Norwalk Republican Town Committee Chairman Pete Torrano said Tuesday night.

“The district has chosen Bryan Meek to fill the vacant seat on the B.O.E.,” RTC District D Chairman John Romano said in an email. “Bryan is a logical choice. Having gone thru the Norwalk school system he is aware of all the potential the school districts have to offer. Bryan’s education and background being of a financial/accounting and the BOE being Norwalk’s largest budget he will serve us well in this area.”  Continue reading Meek set to step into Chiaramonte’s shoes pronto

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Crosland thanks ‘racially conflicted’ Chiaramonte for resigning

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Norwalk Branch NAACP President Darnell Crosland speaks to the Democratic Town Committee on Monday. If he were to get into a fight with Democratic Registrar Stuart Wells, left, it wouldn’t necessarily be a fight based on race, he said. Black and white, yes, but racially motivated, no, he said.

NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk Branch NAACP President Darnell Crosland on Tuesday released the following statement regarding the resignation of Board of Education member Jack Chiaramonte: 

“I accept Jack Chiaramonte’s resignation. I think the rest of Norwalk feels the same way. The NAACP, the DTC, the Republican Party, anyone you speak to would agree that Mr. Chiaramonte’s resignation was a decision made by himself to put the goals and objectives of the Board of Education above his personal issues.

Continue reading Crosland thanks ‘racially conflicted’ Chiaramonte for resigning

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Norwalk Council passes resolution condemning Malloy’s bill, just to make sure

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State Rep. Gail Lavielle (R-143).

NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk has been saved from Hartford’s hands by the fast action of the Common Council and the watchdog behavior of State Rep. Gail Lavielle (R-143), Councilman David McCarthy (R-District E) said.

The Council unanimously voted Tuesday to issue a resolution condemning House Bill 6581, even if state Sen. Cathy Osten (D-Sprague), Senate chairwoman of the Planning and Development Committee, issued a press release last week saying that the bill is already being rewritten to make it more palatable to municipalities by, in part, removing the state’s ability to take land within a half mile of a transit station. Continue reading Norwalk Council passes resolution condemning Malloy’s bill, just to make sure

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