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East Norwalk village district hearing draws opposition – again

Norwalk Planning and Zoning Director Steven Kleppin, upper right, explains the proposed East Norwalk village district, shown in yellow, during the joint Planning Commission/Zoning Commission public hearing on the plan.

NORWALK, Conn. — Something’s got to be done, East Norwalk stalwart Fran DiMeglio said recently, defending the effort to assist development in a newly laid out village district.

Most of the 11 residents attending a public hearing on proposed zoning regulations changes spoke in frustrated opposition to encouraging development, complaining that their input has been ignored.

DiMeglio, sitting on the other side of the aisle as Planning Commission chairwoman, said that as a resident she doesn’t know what the answers are. But she added that the area, though not without charm, needs help if it is to thrive. Continue reading East Norwalk village district hearing draws opposition – again

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Five Fairfield County nonprofits win State grant funding

State Rep. Stephanie Thomas (D-143) leads a Friday press conference at Norwalk City Hall. (Harold F. Cobin)

NORWALK, Conn. — State grants totaling $150,000 will help fund youth violence prevention initiatives at “five wonderful nonprofit organizations in our community,” State Rep. Stephanie Thomas (D-143) said Friday.

“I believe that we all benefit when government and nonprofit organizations team up to address difficult issues,” Thomas said, at City Hall. “Our nonprofit partners are closest to the problem, and they focus on database solutions that work. Given the challenges we’ve all faced over the last 18 months, this funding will help a vulnerable youth move forward in a positive direction. All five of these organizations have proven strategies that will help our young people stay on a positive path throughout their lives.” Continue reading Five Fairfield County nonprofits win State grant funding

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Arthur Goldblatt, 87, founded Grassroots Tennis

Arthur Goldblatt. (Contributed)

Updated, 10 p.m. Monday: Link for Shiva.

NORWALK, Conn. — Arthur Goldblatt has passed away at age 87.

“I’m so saddened to hear of his passing. I’ve known Art for a very long time. He is the founder of the Grassroots Tennis and Education program that has helped so many young boys and girls in our city,” Mayor Harry Rilling said. “Each of the participants of the program graduated from high school with hundreds going on to college, many in scholarships. He was a great man who gave so much to the young people of our community.” Continue reading Arthur Goldblatt, 87, founded Grassroots Tennis

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Scavenging to help P2P; flu shots, a Chamber offering and a Heart Association award

Terrill McGoldrick meeting with patient and giving flu vaccine a year ago. (Claire Schoen)

NORWALK, Conn. — Some Norwalk announcements for you:

  • Get your flu shot Tuesday
  • SoNo charity scavenger hunt
  • Norwalk Chamber offers small business development sessions
  • Norwalk Hospital honored by Heart Association

Continue reading Scavenging to help P2P; flu shots, a Chamber offering and a Heart Association award

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A Norwalk photo #122

(Harold F. Cobin)

NORWALK, Conn. — Mayor Harry Rilling publicly swore in seven members of the newly reinstituted Norwalk Commission on the Status of Women in a ceremony Friday outside City Hall.

The Commission will probably meet on the third Monday of every month and form subcommittees “with various tasks and responsibilities to explore the situation of women and Norwalk relative to equal opportunities, comparable worth and other kinds of things that we know that sometimes women are a little bit behind, and don’t have the same opportunities as others,” Rilling said. Continue reading A Norwalk photo #122

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Fairbairn drops out, Kydes wins Dem endorsement for reelection

A photo on Tyler Fairbairn’s campaign Facebook page. (Courtesy photo)

The 2021 Election is Nov. 2.

NORWALK, Conn. — There will be no Democratic runoff next week in District C. Tyler Fairbairn, who was seeking to be a Democratic candidate for Common Council, has dropped out.

This paves the way for John Kydes, a District C Council member since 2013, to be on the ballot with Jenn McMurrer as his running mate. They will face Republican candidate Read Auerbach and independent candidate Scott Goodwin. Continue reading Fairbairn drops out, Kydes wins Dem endorsement for reelection

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Norwalk Council merges ‘P’ with ‘Z’

Planning and Zoning Director Steven Kleppin explains the current duties of the Planning Commission, Tuesday on Zoom.

NORWALK, Conn. — No muss, no fuss, no fanfare: the Common Council has voted to merge the Planning and Zoning Commissions, effective in January.

There were no public speakers addressing the Council on Tuesday ahead of a unanimous vote, on an important but obscure topic that hasn’t caught the attention of the citizenry. Continue reading Norwalk Council merges ‘P’ with ‘Z’

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Charges against Roberts dropped

Common Council member Kadeem Roberts (D-District A). (File photo)

NORWALK, Conn. — The charges against Common Council member Kadeem Roberts (D-District A) have been dismissed, according to his attorney, Darnell Crosland.

Roberts was charged with Assault in the Third Degree, Disorderly Conduct, and Interfering with a 911 call in December 2020 after a alleged that he was her ex-boyfriend and was stalking her. According to Crosland, the “complaining witness supported today’s dismissal, further proof that reconciliation is always present when clearer heads prevail.” Continue reading Charges against Roberts dropped

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Norwalk plants trees on Wilton Avenue

Director of Transportation, Mobility, and Parking James Travers, left, helps throw some ceremonial dirt onto a newly planted tree, Wednesday on Wilton Avenue. (Harold F. Cobin)

Eddie Zapata with a newly planted tree, Wednesday on Wilton Avenue. (Harold F. Cobin)

NORWALK, Conn. — Workers spruced up Wilton Avenue by planting 18 trees Wednesday, all funded by a grant obtained by the Norwalk Health Department.

The goal isn’t just to plant trees but to create community because people are more likely to walk down tree-lined streets, Director of Transportation, Mobility, and Parking James Travers said. More walkers inspire drivers to slow down.

“I’m already liking it,” said a young resident of the neighborhood, Eddie Zapata.  Continue reading Norwalk plants trees on Wilton Avenue

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Solar program extended; Art Space event and an honor for the Maritime Aquarium

Gianna Palladino, an educator with The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, presents a recent livestream virtual educational program about sea turtles. The Aquarium’s COVID-19 pivot to live virtual programming for schools and families has been honored as the best educational initiative in 2020 among the 241 member institutions of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). (Maritime Aquarium)

NORWALK, Conn. — Some Norwalk announcements for you:

  • Solar for All program extended
  • High schoolers eligible to attend Norwalk Art Space event for free
  • Maritime Aquarium wins education award

Continue reading Solar program extended; Art Space event and an honor for the Maritime Aquarium

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Seattle man named Norwalk Recreation and Parks Director

Newly appointed Norwalk Recreation and Parks Director Robert Stowers speaks during Tuesday’s Common Council meeting on Zoom, as shown on a big screen TV.

NORWALK, Conn. — Norwalk’s new Recreation and Parks Director is coming here from Seattle, where he oversaw 180 full-time employees, 10 direct reports, a $28 million operating budget and a $23 million revenue budget – a background that Common Council members called “impressive.”

Robert Stowers was approved Tuesday with a unanimous Council vote. He’ll replace Nick Roberts in the position, who only held the post for two years after replacing long-time Recreation and Parks Department Director Mike Mocciae.

Roberts said he was returning to Florida to be with family. Stowers, in his application for the job, said he coming to the east coast to be closer to family. Continue reading Seattle man named Norwalk Recreation and Parks Director

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Rilling pulls Norwalk Commission on the Status of Women out of hat, appoints 10 members

Six members of the Norwalk Commission on the Status of Women, as shown in Tuesday’s Common Council meeting on Zoom. From left in the top row are Claudia Werman Connor, Jazmine Prezzie and Anna Keegan. From left in the bottom row are Sharon Baanante, Ivonne Zucco and Iliana Zuniga.

NORWALK, Conn. — Mayor Harry Rilling has revived the Commission on the Status of Women, a long-forgotten City body that’s been inactive for at least 25 years.

“You know, women were hit disproportionately hard by COVID-19. And as we emerge from the pandemic, the time is right for the commission to be reinstated,” Rilling said at Tuesday’s Common Council meeting.

The Commission on the Status of Women became part of the City’s code in 1987, under then-Mayor Bill Collins. It was “scuttled” under former-Mayor Frank Esposito, who followed Collins, according to activist Diane Lauricella, who has been asserting for years that the defunct Commission should be revived. Continue reading Rilling pulls Norwalk Commission on the Status of Women out of hat, appoints 10 members

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