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Seen and Heard in Norwalk: Passion, diplomacy

Meadow Street cleanup South Norwalk hearing 130
Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Remediation Division official Peter Hill and DEEP environmental analyst Jeffrey Wilcox answer questions Thursday at the Maritime Aquarium.

NORWALK, Conn. –  Here are some items of interest that were seen or heard recently in Norwalk:

Bullying at the Board of Ed

Forming a policy to prevent adult-on-student bullying was tricky, Board of Education members said Tuesday.

The policy needed to be written in such a way as to not undermine teacher authority, they said. Then there was the problem of athletic competitions.

“One of the things we had to consider coaches because coaches do in the moment get heated,” Artie Kassimis explained. “A lot of time their coaching is very Jack Chiarmonte-ish. It’s passionate.”

That prompted Jack Chiaramonte to ask, “Why am I being picked on?”

Chiaramonte laughed with everyone else.

Are you sure I can’t help?

One Norwalk citizen decided to ask a question of a state agency Thursday evening during a public hearing regarding efforts to clean up hazardous materials at five Meadow Street properties.

Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Remediation Division official Peter Hill and DEEP environmental analyst Jeffrey Wilcox had been answering questions about explosions at Lajoies Auto Salvage when Ann Frimmet posed a larger question.

“Do you have enough people to really handle what you are being asked to do about keeping our health and safety in reasonable bounds?” she asked.

“Be honest,” two people said, as Wilcox offered sympathy to Hill with, “That’s why you get the big bucks, Peter.”

Hill looked Frimmet in the eye and said, “I believe so, yes,”

“OK,” Frimmet said. “Because if you said you didn’t, I’d be happy to advocate for doing something about it.”

Hill’s response was deadpan. He said, “We could always use more people.

‘Mean spirited’ tax sale necessary

The Board of Estimate and Taxation seemed to have words from a March 21 public hearing on their mind Monday night as Tax Collector Lisa Biagiarelli gave a report.

Diane Lauricella had criticized the annual auction of properties that have taxes due, calling the public nature of the sale “mean spirited.”

She was absent Monday, but Mayor Richard Moccia seemed to be answering her when he said, “While it is embarrassing for some people it is the most expeditious way for us to collect the back taxes that the people in the city who are paying their taxes are subsidizing.”

BET member Jim Clarke commented that the sale is done very professionally, and Biagiarelli mentioned the many notices that are put out in an effort to notify those whose properties are up for auction.

“We are required by law to very public about what we are doing for their own protection,” she said.

The interest on unpaid bills is 18 percent, she said; after five years the interest becomes more than the tax, she said.

“Having done these sales now every two years I can tell you, the lion’s share of the people in those sales, it’s the same people. It’s the same names,” she said. “I hate to say this, but they pay when their back is against the wall and they are forced into it. They’re paying the interest and they’re paying the tax sale fees, but that is the only time that they pay.”

Comments

14 responses to “Seen and Heard in Norwalk: Passion, diplomacy”

  1. LWitherspoon

    What is Ms. Lauricella’s proposal for collecting taxes from property owners who don’t pay their tax bill?
    .
    Is she against the tax sale period, or does she think it should proceed but in a less public manner?

    1. I think Ms Lauricella has reservations about the public way the tax sale is done.

  2. Diane C2

    Mayor Moccia on city tax sales…“While it is embarrassing for some people it is the most expeditious way for us to collect the back taxes that the people in the city who are paying their taxes are subsidizing.”

    Too bad the Mayor and BET don’t take a similar view with collection the $50 MILLION dollars owed to Norwalk taxpayers by the Maritime Aquarium for the $35 million in “loans” …

  3. Tim T

    Amazing Moccia commenting on taxes when he paid exactly ZERO in property or car taxes . Maybe Moccia would not be so sarcastic and condescending to those that are struggling to pay their taxes because of his tax and spend mind set if he actually paid any.

  4. Diane C2

    @Nancy – and I’m worried about the not-so-public-way city officials address our subsidizing private organizations

  5. Joanne Romano

    Sorry but while you continuously say the mayor pays no taxes do you also think his wife supports him? I don’t know about you but in most families the husband and wife share the taxes, the bills and anything else that has to be paid…so your regular argument about him not having any tax bearing property is meaningless in reality because the property he lives in is (and yes, thats the car he uses when not involved in City business) when he shops in any stores, its taxable…so why the constant barage of usual untruths…just because the properties are in his wifes name means nothing…he shares the burden of expenses just like the rest of Norwalk taxpayers…

  6. Tim T

    Joanne Romano
    I have no idea how the mayor and his wife handle their finances nor do I care. What I do care about is the fact that the mayor is not reasonable for any property or car taxes for the city of Norwalk .. Maybe if he actually had horse in the race he would have more concern for the taxpayers.

    http://my.norwalkct.org/eTaxbill/

    Once again I have posted a link to my FACTS.
    If you have facts about the mayor and his wife’s finance please post a link or are they just assumptions on your part.

  7. Tim T

    *responsible

  8. Tim T

    Also let us not forget that Moccia has illegally banned residents that are behind on their car taxes from using the beach.

    Tell me this is not hypocritical when he is not even a taxpayer in Norwalk

    When the beach was deeded (gifted) to the city the stipulation was that you had to be open to ALL CITY RESIDENTS. The mayor cannot just arbitrarily make laws. With this in mind the city is in violation of the gift that it was given as in the beach. How can you argue with that? What’s right is right..

    Before someone states that its fair that people should pay the taxes they owe keep in mind that this is not the issue. The issue is once again the great OZ has overstepped his authority. Also keep in mind that many of these people that are late on car taxes are current on tens of thousands of dollars property taxes. I would suggest anyone that is denied a beach pass demand to see the law that allows this and when they cannot come up with it as it does not exist demand a beach pass.

    NOTICE HOW THE CODE BOOK FOR THE CITY OF NORWALK STATES NOTHING ABOUT TAXES BEING PAID. THIS IS YET ANOTHER TIME WHERE MOCCIA HAS OVERSTEPPED HIS AUTHORITY. I WOULD SUGGEST THAT ANYONE WHO IS DENIED A STICKER BECAUSE OF PAST DUE TAX POINTS THIS OUT AND DEMANDS A STICKER…
    MOCCIA CONTRARY TO HIS BELIEVE IS NOT KING BUT MAYOR.

    CODE OF THE CITY OF NORWALK, CONNECTICUT, v177 Updated 02-15-2012
    ORDINANCES
    Chapter 74, PARKS AND RECREATION
    ARTICLE I, EN Calf Pasture Beach and Other City ParksEN [Adopted 5-14-1957, effective 5-25-1957]

    § 74-1. Free admission for residents and property owners. [Amended 7-9-1996]

    All vehicles of residents and property owners of the city shall be entitled to free admission to the Norwalk public park system, except as otherwise provided herein.

    § 74-2. Season ticket for residents and property owners of certain towns. [Amended 5-10-1977; 7-14-1981, effective 11-1-1981]

    All vehicles of residents and property owners of the Towns of New Canaan, Wilton, Weston, Redding and Ridgefield shall be entitled to a season parking privilege ticket to Calf Pasture Park from May 23 to October 1 in each year for a sum to be set pursuant to § 74-24 of the Code of the City of Norwalk.

    § 74-3. Parking fees. [Amended 6-12-1973; 6-8-1976; 5-10-1977; 7-14-1981, effective 11-1-1981]

    A.For all vehicles of persons other than those provided for in the two preceding sections, a parking fee of a sum to be set pursuant to § 74-24 of the Code of the City of Norwalk shall be charged from January 1 to December 31 in each year. [Amended 7-13-1982]

    B.Notwithstanding the foregoing, the Common Council may from time to time, by resolution, change the parking fees set out herein or may waive their imposition during short periods of time for special occasions or events.

    § 74-4. Stickers for certain residents and property owners. [Amended 7-13-1982; 2-22-1983; 7-9-1996; 4-8-2003; 2-22-2005]

    A.The City will provide a different color sticker for each of the following:

    (1)Residents and property owners of the City.

    (2)Residents of the surrounding towns named in § 74-2 of this Code.

    B.The sticker shall be prominently and permanently displayed as required by the Recreation and Parks Department and shall be nontransferable. Failure to display said sticker in a prominent and permanent manner as required by the Recreation and Parks Department shall be grounds for refusal into Calf Pasture Park, unless the nonresident fee is paid.

    C.No fee shall be charged to Norwalk residents or property owners for a park sticker.

    § 74-5. Waterfront parking. EN

    No vehicles other than those owned by residents or property owners of the City sark in the parking place along the waterfront.

  9. Joanne Romano

    Again, your argument makes no sense because they as a married couple do pay taxes on a car and their home…are you really that hell bent on making this look like the mayor is a non city supporting resident? I don’t own a car nor a house in Norwalk but I have lived here for 38 years and have well paid my dues and continue to do so…so perhaps that makes me not worthy of living here with all who own so much! Please I am so tired of you trying to rationalize your pure hatred for not only the Mayor, the former police chief and by political party, any Republican you may come across that it actually gets nauseating sometimes. We are all aware that you support Andy and thats wonderful because that is your choice and because we live in a free country you are allowed that freedom, but must we constantly be baraged with your one sided twisted version of what we are supposed to believe in? You have no idea who any of us support/do not support and you always find the need to trash those who don’t meet you criteria.

  10. Joanne Romano

    As far as the beach stickers go…I have no idea why we don’t pay for stickers. Are you aware of the value of the upkeep of our beach. It is in fact one of the nicest beaches around and I can tell you , during the summer months and sometimes even in the winter I visit many of the beaches in fairfield county and they don’t hold a candle to ours but charge each and every resident astronomical amounts to have the pleasure of using their parking spaces. So whats so different about Norwalk?

  11. Tim T

    Joanne Romano
    I will not play your games. I stated my points with facts to back them up. You on the other hand ramble on aimlessly with personal attacks. It seems that you are concerned that my posts bring issue to light that your party would rather have hidden.. You can continue to post but I will not reply as I have said what I had to say.
    Have a good night

  12. oldtimer

    Moccia was not a taxpayer, nor married, when he was elected. He has since re-married and lives in her apartment. On the record he remains NOT a taxpayer. This has been brought up before and he has never defended his non-taxpayer status publicly with the argument Joanne Romano uses. I suspect this is an issue he doesn’t worry about. When he ran for mayor, the issue of residency was raised and never got much traction with the voters, either. I am not a big fan, but the fact he does not pay taxes in Norwalk has not hurt him much. Timmy, if you are supporting someone else, you need to come up with something else, that will resonate loud and clear with voters.

  13. Don’t Panic

    It would appear that there is more than one violation against the statute for beach stickers, as posted by Tim T. The way this reads, the city’s decision to stop handing out physical stickers and have people register over the web site is also in violation, as the statute clearly references stickers. If you go on the web site now, it just tells you to print something out to show, whereas you should have a sticker to prominently display.

    § 74-4. Stickers for certain residents and property owners. [Amended 7-13-1982; 2-22-1983; 7-9-1996; 4-8-2003; 2-22-2005]

    A.The City will provide a different color sticker for each of the following:

    (1)Residents and property owners of the City.

    (2)Residents of the surrounding towns named in § 74-2 of this Code.

    B.The sticker shall be prominently and permanently displayed as required by the Recreation and Parks Department and shall be nontransferable. Failure to display said sticker in a prominent and permanent manner as required by the Recreation and Parks Department shall be grounds for refusal into Calf Pasture Park, unless the nonresident fee is paid.

    C.No fee shall be charged to Norwalk residents or property owners for a park sticker

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