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Lyons claims big victory as Facebook battle over ‘Fix it First’ churns on

State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-25), center, and Mayor Harry Rilling, right, on Monday alert parents to the facts that the Board of Education's facilities improvement plan would not fix most Norwalk schools for years.

State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-25), center, and Mayor Harry Rilling, right, on Monday alert parents to the facts that the Board of Education’s facilities improvement plan would not fix most Norwalk schools for years.

Updated, Feb. 20, PDF added; Updated, 5:40 p.m., Shirley Mosby’s terms on the BoE.

NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk parents may be pleased to hear the latest from Board of Education Chairman Mike Lyons.

Mayor Harry Rilling, according to Lyons, has been swayed to support new school construction.

“The challenge is to come up with a schedule of projects that the city can afford.  That’s what we’ll be working on with him,” Lyons said in an early morning email. Continue reading Lyons claims big victory as Facebook battle over ‘Fix it First’ churns on

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‘Baffled’ Columbus Magnet principal doubts job after ‘Fix it First’ announcement

Columbus Magnet Schoool Principal Thomas Medard, right, shows off a camera used to teach Columbu

Columbus Magnet Schoool Principal Thomas Medard, right, at a Board of Education meeting in January shows off a camera used to teach Columbus Magnet kids.

NORWALK, Conn. – The outcry over Monday’s Fix it First news conference includes a plea from the “publicly humiliated” Columbus Magnet School Principal Medard Thomas.

Echoing the words of Board of Education members who called the Monday press conference an “underhanded” maneuver, Thomas, in a Facebook post, painted it as a betrayal given that the legislators who were rejecting the Board’s new schools plan were at his school Friday morning.  Continue reading ‘Baffled’ Columbus Magnet principal doubts job after ‘Fix it First’ announcement

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Teachers support Fix It First

Send signed letters to news@nancyonnorwalk.com

Send signed letters to news@nancyonnorwalk.com

To the editor:

The Fix It First Proposal was unveiled this week, an alternative to the Board of Education capital improvements plan. Both of the plans now under discussion attempt to address the challenges of overcrowding and deterioration. The Board’s plan prioritizes new classroom spaces with infrastructure and existing classroom improvements to follow, and the Fix It First plan prioritizes infrastructure and existing classroom improvements, and then school construction to follow. We in the Norwalk Federation of Teachers have felt dismay as the district’s plan ran into difficulties when the educational programs were selected, announced and not embraced. Both plans will need adjustment, but we need to move forward. Continue reading Teachers support Fix It First

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Norwalk Council looks askance at BoE request in brief budget discussion

Norwalk Finance Director Bob Barron gives a brief explanation of his recommended 2017-18 operating budget to Common Council members Tuesday in City Hall.

Norwalk Finance Director Bob Barron gives a brief explanation of his recommended 2017-18 operating budget to Common Council members Tuesday in City Hall.

Updated, 4:17 p.m.: Document from Bob Barron inserted, along with clarification. Correction as to BoE increases, and statement about “10.6 versus 22.8.”

NORWALK, Conn. – Skepticism toward the Norwalk Board of Education was revealed Tuesday as Finance Director Bob Barron explained to Common Council members his figuring in coming up with a budget recommendation.

The BoE’s projected budget increase just 10 months ago was 3.7 percent in 2017-18 but now it’s 10.1 percent, Barron said, answering a question from Council member Steve Serasis (D-District A) at Tuesday’s Council meeting. Continue reading Norwalk Council looks askance at BoE request in brief budget discussion

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DECD grants Norwalk $2 million to clean up Ryan Park

The Ryan Park plan is explained in December at the Choice Neighborhood Initiative office on Water Street.

The Ryan Park plan is explained in December at the Choice Neighborhood Initiative office on Water Street.

NORWALK, Conn. – The state is awarding Norwalk a $2 million grant to deal with contamination in Ryan Park.

This is part of $6.9 million spread statewide to address brownfields “as part of the administration’s ongoing, unprecedented efforts to restore and put blighted properties back into productive use,” a press release from Gov. Dannel Malloy’s office said. Continue reading DECD grants Norwalk $2 million to clean up Ryan Park

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We condemn messages of hate

Send signed letters to news@nancyonnorwalk.com

Send signed letters to news@nancyonnorwalk.com

To the editor:

We the undersigned condemn messages of hate of any kind, including the White Supremacist fliers distributed along Newtown Avenue in Norwalk, this past week.  We stand with our neighbors of all races, colors, ethnicities and religions. We will not judge anyone by the color of their skin, whom they choose to love or who they voted for. This cowardly act of leafleting can make us stronger for  we are all Norwalk and we are better than a divisive, hate filled message. Continue reading We condemn messages of hate

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White Barn supporters need $55,000 by Friday to save theater

A shot from WhiteBarnTheatre.org.

A shot from WhiteBarnTheatre.org.

Updated, 5 a.m.: Clarification.

NORWALK, Conn. – Supporters of the historic White Barn Theater have just three days to raise $55,000 – in cash – or the theater will be demolished, Attorney Stephen Nevas said.

Jim Fieber, the developer who won Zoning approval to build a conservation development on the former Lucille Lortel estate on the Westport/Norwalk line, has demanded $100,000 in cash by Friday, Nevas said. The White Barn Foundation has raised $45,000 but it’s difficult because donors don’t like the fact that the money is nonrefundable, he said. Continue reading White Barn supporters need $55,000 by Friday to save theater

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Norwalk leaders on new schools plan: ‘Fix it First’

Norwalk officials, led by

Norwalk officials, led by State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-25), center, and Mayor Harry Rilling, right, lead a press conference Monday next to Jefferson Elementary School.

Updated, 2:19 a.m., complete story.

NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk parents are suffering from a misconception – they think the $118 million capital budget request submitted by the Board of Education this year will mean that their child’s school will soon be fixed, Mayor Harry Rilling said Monday.

In fact, the BoE facilities plan front loads construction of two new schools and plans renovations at older schools, in other parts of the city, in five or 10 years, said Rilling, State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-25), State Rep. Chris Perone (D-137), State Rep. Bruce Morris (D-140) and other leaders as they announced an alternative plan to “Fix it First.”

Video by Harold Cobin at end of story. Continue reading Norwalk leaders on new schools plan: ‘Fix it First’

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The ‘Fix it First’ proposal

State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-25),  center, and Mayor Harry Rilling, right, on Monday alert parents to the facts that the Board of Education's facilities improvement plan would not fix most Norwalk schools for years.

State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-25), center, and Mayor Harry Rilling, right, on Monday alert parents to the facts that the Board of Education’s facilities improvement plan would not fix most Norwalk schools for years.

NORWALK, Conn. – Below is the text from the handout provided Monday by Mayor Harry Rilling, State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-25), State Rep. Bruce Morris (D-140) and State Rep. Chris Perone (D-137) in a press conference called to lay out a different plan to fix Norwalk Public Schools. Continue reading The ‘Fix it First’ proposal

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Barron plans for 2 percent mill rate increase; Lyons predicts layoffs

Norwalk Finance Director Bob Barron.

Norwalk Finance Director Bob Barron.

Correction, 7:30 p.m.: A “3” was dropped from “3.1 percent” when the text was copied.

NORWALK, Conn. – Taking $2 million out of Norwalk’s fund balance will offset this year’s uncertainty in state funding, Finance Director Bob Barron said Monday, in issuing his recommended 2017-18 operating budget, which estimates a mill rate increase of 2 percent.

The recommended budget immediately drew condemnation from Board of Education members. Continue reading Barron plans for 2 percent mill rate increase; Lyons predicts layoffs

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Norwalk political notes: Science matters, Himes and Blumenthal say

The Lockwood Mathews Mansion, with new LED lighting. (Contributed photo)

The Lockwood Mathews Mansion, with new LED lighting. (Contributed photo)

Correction, 1:28 a.m. Feb. 15: Kimmel said “have been briefed already.”

NORWALK, Conn. – Here’s what we have for you in political notes this Monday:

 

  • Darwin Day marked by Himes, Blumenthal, with pleas for courage
  • Lockwood Matthews Mansion Board: Let there be light
  • Norwalk Finance Director weighs in on Malloy’s budget
  • Duff fights for SpEd parents
  • Kimmel: budget cycle reversed
  • Odd greeting for Mosby
  • Lavielle hopes for bipartisan budget work
  • Wood seeks opioid reform

Continue reading Norwalk political notes: Science matters, Himes and Blumenthal say

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Norwalk BoE marks progress in teacher development

Norwalk Public Schools Chief Talent Officer Cherese Chery speaks to the Board of Education last week.

Norwalk Public Schools Chief Talent Officer Cherese Chery speaks to the Board of Education last week.

NORWALK, Conn. – It’s gone from “chaos” to “really getting straightened out,” Board of Education Chairman Mike Lyons said last week, of the Norwalk Public Schools Human Relations Department, a.k.a., the talent office.

Laudatory comments such as that flowed after a presentation by Chief Talent Officer Cherese Chery, who recommended continued changes in the department with the addition of new staff positions in coming years. Continue reading Norwalk BoE marks progress in teacher development

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Opinion: Norwalk ACTs director’s weekly shout outs

Anthony Allison

Anthony Allison

Anthony Allison is the executive director of Norwalk ACTs.

Shout Out to the Fairfield County’s Community Foundation for awarding nearly $2 million in grants to 74 area organizations that are results-oriented and support the identified outcome areas determined by the Community Foundation’s mission:

  • All Fairfield County youth thrive by age 25
  • All Fairfield County women and girls reach their full potential
  • All Fairfield County households are economically secure
  • Arts for everyone in Fairfield County
  • Fairfield County benefits from an effective nonprofit sector

Continue reading Opinion: Norwalk ACTs director’s weekly shout outs

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NancyOnNorwwalk.com was conceived as the place to go for Norwalk residents to get the real, unvarnished story about what is going on in and around their city. NancyOnNorwalk does not intend to be a print newspaper online; rather, it exists to pull the curtain back and shine a spotlight on how Norwalk is run and what is happening regarding issues that have an impact on taxpayers’ pocketbooks and safety. As an independent site, NancyOnNorwalk’s first and only allegiance is to the reader.

About Nancy

Nancy came to Norwalk in September 2010 and, after reporting on Norwalk for two years for another company, resigned to begin Nancy On Norwalk so she engage in journalism the way it was meant to be done. She is married to career journalist Mark Chapman, has a son, Eric (the artist and web designer who built this website), and two cats – a middle-aged lady and a young hottie who are learning how to peacefully co-exist.