NORWALK, Conn. – Some Norwalk political action for you:
- Himes: Mueller report shows ‘pretty ugly stuff’
- ‘A little bit confident’ on Trump $1 trillion for infrastructure
- City seeks to block Milligan’s witness
- New Tyvek on Wall Street
- Council to vote Tuesday on noise ordinance, discuss POKO
Video by Harold Cobin posted with story
Himes on Mueller
If Congress wanted to impeach President Donald Trump, information in the Mueller Report would make a strong case for obstruction of justice, U.S. Rep. Jim Himes (D-Greenwich) said Thursday.
It’s “pretty ugly stuff,” but Mueller recognizes that there’s a policy against indicting a president, Himes said.
Meeting with reporters in Stamford, the five-term congressman encouraged Americans to read the report to understand the tricks Russians used to manipulate public opinion and influence the 2016 Presidential Election. The report supports the conclusion by U.S. intelligence agencies that the Russians interfered in the election, contradicting a report by Congressional Republicans which said otherwise, he noted.
He’s not surprised that there’s no evidence that the Trump campaign conspired with Russians, because Russians don’t operate in such a way to leave evidence, he said. The five-term Congressman expressed surprise at the “depth” of Trump’s efforts “to try to torpedo the special counsel investigation.”
“There is enough gangster-like behavior on the part of the President that Congress could legitimately choose to start the proceedings, to begin to consider articles of impeachment… I don’t think that’s going to happen so it’s sort of an academic point here.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has said she doesn’t want to pursue impeachment and the Senate would never vote to convict Trump, he said. But Trump’s behavior indicates “the mind frame of a guilty person.”
Congress should delve deeper to see if Trump has obtained loans from Russians or has laundered money for Russians, because those acts would leave him open to Russian manipulation, Himes said.
Republicans say it’s time to move on. Politico reports: “With no criminal charges against the president, many GOP lawmakers on Thursday gleefully watched Attorney General William Barr repeat their oft-repeated lines of ‘no collusion’ to a national audience.”
Himes called Barr’s comments Thursday “abysmal.”
Trump’s $1 trillion for infrastructure
Himes was asked if he is confident that Trump’s request for $1 trillion to address the nation’s infrastructure needs would be approved.
“I am a little bit confident,” Himes replied.
Trump’s 2020 budget request to Congress contains a renewed call for a $1 trillion infrastructure plan, Reason reports.
There’s broad Democratic support for the proposal and Connecticut legislators will be “the tip of the spear,” but vital support from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) is uncertain, Himes said.
Himes said he’s optimistic and “keeping his fingers crossed” because toll revenue alone won’t be enough to address Connecticut’s needs.
Motion seeks to block testimony in POKO/Milligan suit
Lawyers for the City of Norwalk and its Redevelopment Agency filed a motion to block testimony in a lawsuit over land which was part of a Wall Street redevelopment project.
Real estate broker Jason Milligan, who along with Richard Olson of POKO Partners is being sued by the two public entities for a transaction which allegedly violated an agreement regarding the land’s development, announced last week that he has recruited Attorney Rachel Goldberg, former Stamford Redevelopment Agency counsel, to testify on behalf of the defendants in the lawsuit.
The plaintiffs on Monday filed a motion in an effort to block that testimony. The proposed testimony is prohibited by the Connecticut Practice Book, they argue.
Milligan’s disclosure to the court stated that Goldberg would testify about the validity of the Land Disclosure Agreement (LDA) governing the properties at issue.
“It is a long standing common law rule that no witness can testify as to a legal opinion,” the plaintiffs argue. Plus, Goldberg’s testimony would be superfluous, as the Court knows the law.
The case is set to resume April 30, with Judge Charles Lee considering Milligan’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit.
Milligan seeks publicity for Tyvek ‘encore’ on Wall Street
After DPW workers tore down Milligan’s enclosure surrounding a City signal box last week, Milligan on Saturday sent NoN a photo of what appeared to be a new box. “I don’t think they got the roots the other day,” Milligan wrote Saturday.
Milligan is in a dispute with City over 50 square feet of real estate next to 69 Wall Street, which he owns. City officials contend that a traffic signal box located there since the 1980s is permitted by a 1950s easement. Milligan disagrees. After a volley of lawyer letters, on April 10 Milligan erected an enclosure around the box, locked it, and wrapped it in Tyvek, a nod to the stalled Wall Street Place development nearby.
When four DPW workers arrived to remove the enclosure, on the grounds that public safety required unimpeded access to the box, a confrontation ensued in which Milligan angrily called them stupid and accused them of theft. He called police, as did DPW workers.
The confrontation ended with Milligan buying everyone smoothies, DPW Superintendent of Operations Chris Torre said, but only one or two City employees drank them.
Despite having himself called police, Milligan later accused the City of heavy-handed police state tactics. “I am surprised at the incredible overreaction … It is making me consider an encore,” Milligan wrote on April 12.
The encore is a panel next to the box that doesn’t appear to prevent the City from reaching the electronics inside, which control a nearby traffic light and a pedestrian signal.
The City declined Monday to comment on the new patch of Tyvek on Wall Street.
Milligan is on vacation this week. During that time he has actively sought publicity for the new panel, but objected to being “hassled” with questions about his objection to the box. He’s also promised more news. He again declined to comment regarding whether Candace V. Fay, his attorney in the dispute, is a family relation. An online search reveals that Fay has also been known as Candace V. Milligan.
Council to meet next week, after all
Common Council members said Wednesday that they thought next week’s meeting would be cancelled, but it’s on.
The city’s legislative body may vote Tuesday on the noise ordinance developed by the Council’s Ordinance Committee with the help of an outside consultant.
The meeting agenda also calls for an executive discussion on the aforementioned LDA, which likely concerns a proposal to resume development of the stalled Wall Street Place phase I – known to many simply as “POKO” – discussed in an executive session last month.
It’s believed that this proposal would involve demolishing the Garden Cinemas. Mum’s the word from the City.