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Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Boarding Back to Normal

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Riders board the 1:08 p.m. westbound train today at the Metro-North Westport station in Saugatuck after more than four months of bridge ramp-only access to board westbound trains. Commuters can now board directly from the platform. During the period of ramp-only access, Metro-North workers replaced rail ties on Track 3. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

08/03/16 03:09 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Malloy Makes Mid-Term Staffing Changes

By Mark Pazniokas

www.ctmirror.org

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy today named new communications and government affairs directors as his administration announced the mid-term departures of three senior staffers: Mark Bergman, Devon Puglia and Paul Mounds.

Kelly Donnelly will succeed Puglia as the communications chief, while Chris Smith will take over for Mounds as director of policy and government affairs, essentially the administration chief lobbyist with the General Assembly.

Bergman joined the administration after the 2014 campaign to oversee communications, then became the deputy chief of staff under Brian Durand, who is remaining as chief. There are no immediate plans to fill Bergman’s job.

The departures come amid speculation that Malloy would accept a post in a Hillary Clinton administration if one were offered, an unlikely possibility if a federal grand jury does not quickly conclude its investigation of the Democratic Party’s solicitations of state contractors to support the governor’s re-election.

Click here for more of story

08/03/16 02:19 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

State Offers Reassurances Over Aid to Bridgewater

By Keith M.Phaneuf

www.ctmirror.org

The state Department of Economic and Community Development has responded with reassurances to a recent news report that Westport’s Bridgewater Associates — to which Connecticut just pledged $52 million in economic assistance — is slowing its hiring.

DECD spokesman Jim Watson said that the hedge fund still must comply with several job retention and creation benchmarks over the next five years, or risk the loss of as much as $17 million.

“All companies in all industries are subject to business fluctuations,” Watson said in a statement. “All experience periods of acceleration and slowdowns in hiring. DECD recognizes that fact and takes a longer-term approach in its agreements with companies.”

The state committed $22 million in bonding on May 27 to help the fund – which manages about $150 billion in assets – expand facilities in Westport, Wilton and Norwalk.

Click here for more of story

08/03/16 11:00 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Compo Sunset

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Tuesday’s sunset as seen from Westport’s Compo Beach. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Meredith Holod for WestportNow.com

08/03/16 12:15 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Wednesday, August 3, 2016


8 a.m. - Town Hall Room 201 - Maintenance Study Committee
10 a.m. - Town Hall Room 201 - UN International Hospitality Committee
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “the beautiful POND”
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “SOLOS 2016”
2 p.m. and 8 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “The Invisible Hand”
4 p.m. - Westport Library - Artist-in-Residence Challenge: Faces in Everyday Objects Workshop with Miggs Burroughs
6:30 p.m. - Westport Library - Chess Club for Adults
7 p.m. - Levitt Pavilion - Children’s Series: Alastair Moock & Friends
8 p.m. - Town Hall Auditorium - Board of Finance (live coverage cable channel 79, AT&T channel 99, and westportct.gov)

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

08/03/16 12:05 AM Comments Closed • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Real Estate Report: Building Inspection Angst

By Judy Szablak

Special to WestportNow

Whether you are buying or selling a home in Westport, the first hurdle after an agreed upon offer is the building inspection.

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Featured Home: this home at 14 Greenwood Lane is listed at $2,999,999. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo courtesy of William Pitt Sotheby’s Westport/The Gibbons Group.

An offer to purchase customarily includes a building inspection clause, which is to be completed by the buyer within five to ten days after a signed binder agreement, and at the buyer’s expense.

This beginning part of the transaction creates worry for both the buyer and the seller.

The buyer is concerned about purchasing a home that has unforeseen issues, as well as defects that are costly to repair. It is not all that common that a detailed inspection does not uncover any problems, however minor they may be.

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08/02/16 11:09 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

CT Gets Nearly $1M to Combat Zika Virus

By Kyle Constable

www.ctmirror.org

State officials have nearly $1 million in new funds at their disposal to fight the Zika virus after receiving a pair of federal grants from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC is giving the Connecticut Department of Public Health two grants – a $579,000 grant announced Monday and a $400,000 grant announced today – to protect Connecticut residents from the Zika virus and monitor existing cases.

Florida’s governor announced Monday as many as 14 cases of the Zika virus in his state may have been locally transmitted – the first cases of the virus transmitted in the continental United States.

The $579,000 grant announced Monday will be used to “support and enhance the state’s efforts to protect Connecticut residents from Zika virus and monitor serious birth defects, like microcephaly, and other adverse health outcomes that can be caused by Zika virus,” Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s office said.

Click here for more of story

08/02/16 09:27 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Police Launch ‘U Text, U Drive, U Pay’ Campaign

Westport police will launch another no-texting-while-driving campaign beginning Wednesday. 

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in cooperation with the Connecticut Department of Transportation’s (CDOT) Highway Safety Office, the “U Drive, U Text, U Pay” initiative will run through Aug. 16.

Lt. David Farrell said last year’s crackdown statewide netted an 8 percent drop in mobile phone use by drivers at observation locations throughout municipalities that conducted enforcement.

He said the decrease encouraged law enforcement agencies to continue enforcement, underscoring that driver mobile phone use is dangerous and illegal.

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08/02/16 08:26 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

JP Applications Open for Unaffiliated Voters

Any Westport voter interested in becoming a Justice of the Peace (JP) and who is not enrolled as affiliated with a major political party can now apply, Town Clerk Patricia Strauss announced today.

She encouraged them to contact the Office of the Town Clerk to apply now through Nov. 1.

The term of office for new JPs, who can perform weddings, take depositions and administer oaths, will be four years commencing Jan. 2, Strauss said.

Applications are available weekdays in her office from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., she added.

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08/02/16 06:37 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

More Compo Improvements Coming

New Compo Beach improvements under study include a walkway along South Beach and restrooms there, Westport Parks and Recreation Director Jen Fava said today.

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Westport Parks and Recreation Director addresses the Westport Rotary Club today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Addressing the Westport Rotary Club as she passed the 11-month mark on the job, she said she is currently initiating design work on the projects.

Other Compo improvements on the drawing board include dredging of the channel into the Ned Dimes Marina and rehabilitation and beautification of the Soundview Drive parking lot, she said.

These additional Compo enhancements follow the successful installation of a walkway and fencing along the East Beach, completed in recent weeks.

More "More Compo Improvements Coming"

08/02/16 03:30 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

P&R Director: No Walk in Park to Get Things Done

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Westport Parks and Recreation Director Jen Fava, on the job 11 months, told the Westport Rotary Club today that her biggest surprise she has found so far is how long it takes to navigate the maze of Westport’s boards and commissons to get things done. Having worked in other communiities, including Scarsdale, N.Y., and North Hempstead, Long Island where things were much faster, she said she now allows at least four months to get approvals. “I am still getting used to the ‘process’ here,” she said. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

08/02/16 03:25 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Granger at the Movies: ‘Café Society,’ ‘Bad Moms,’ ‘Ice Age: Collision Course’

By Susan Granger

Special to WestportNow

“The Rockies may crumble, Gibraltar may tumble…” but Woody Allen continues to churn out one movie each year. From classic Manhattan comedies (“Annie Hall”) to memorable character studies (“Blue Jasmine”) to stylish crime-capers (“Match Point”), that’s something moviegoers can count on.

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Set in the 1930s, “Café Society” is a bittersweet coming-of-age tale, as eager, earnest Bobby Dorfman (Jesse Eisenberg) moves from the Bronx to Hollywood, where he goes to work for his pretentious Uncle Phil (Steve Carrell), a name-dropping, big-time talent agent.

Not surprisingly, Bobby immediately falls in love with Phil’s pretty secretary, Vonnie (Kristen Stewart), who drives him to see movie stars’ mansions in Beverly Hills.

“Menial errands are my specialty,” Bobby guilelessly explains, “but I don’t see a great future in it.” Trying not to be intoxicated by the shallow glitz and schmoozing gossip, he, nevertheless, marvels, “I’ve never mixed Champagne with bagels and lox.”

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08/02/16 03:19 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Comings & Goings: New Eatery at Old Town Hall

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Bill Taibe and partner Massimo Tullio are planning a new restaurant in Westport’s Old Town Hall, 90 Post Road East. Taibe, who brought Le Farm, The Whelk, and Kawa Ni to Westport, is not certain of the format but, according to ctbites.com, he suggested the new menu might be “a celebration of classic tavern grub and drink.” Opening is projected for sometime late this year. The space was formerly occupied by Spruce Home & Garden. The lower level of the building houses Rothbard Ale + Lager, which describes itself as a “premiere European Gastropub,” offering dishes and drinks inspired by the Central European regions. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

08/02/16 02:07 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Mercury Spill Forces Evacuation

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UPDATE The Avery Center for Obstetrics & Gynecology, 12 Avery Place, was evacuated today after a mercury spill caused by a damaged blood pressure cuff. According to Assistant Fire Chief, Rob Yost, the mercury droplets leaked on to a carpet and got on to the soles of nurses’ shoes. The Fairfield County Hazardous Incident Response Team, based in Westport with technicians who included Norwalk Fire Department members, worked to decontaminate the office area and scrubs were placed in bags. Also responding was a cleanup contractor as well as Department of Energy and Environmental Protection personnel and Mark Cooper, director of the Westport Weston Health District. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

08/02/16 12:36 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Responding to Mercury Spill

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Mark Cooper (c), director of the Westport Weston Health Center, was among those responding today to a mercury spill caused by a broken blood pressure cuff at The Avery Center for Obstetrics & Gynecology, 12 Avery Place. The spill caused evacuation of staff and patients while technicians from the Fairfield County Hazardous Incident Response Team worked to contain the damage. According to experts, any amount of mercury spilled indoors can be hazardous, resulting in short-term or long-term health issues depending on the exposure. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

08/02/16 12:31 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Tuesday, August 2, 2016


10 a.m. - 4 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - “the beautiful POND”
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. - Westport Arts Center - “SOLOS 2016”
10:30 a.m. - Longshore Club Park - Westport Library Storytime at Longshore
10 a.m. - Westport Library - Book Chat
4 p.m. - 6 p.m. - Westport Library - Drop-in Tech Help
7 p.m. - Town Hall Room 201 - Historic District Commission/Architectural Review Board
7 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “The Invisible Hand”
7 p.m. - Levitt Pavilion - Gunsmoke

See more events:  Celebrate Westport Calendar

08/02/16 12:05 AM Comments Closed • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Monday, August 01, 2016

Packing Up at Oscar’s

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It was packing up day today at the closed Oscar’s on Main Street. A Facebook post said the Papageorge family donated food and paper goods to the Merton house in Bridgeport while Westport’s homeless shelter received the outdoor table and chairs. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Facebook photo

08/01/16 08:50 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Piled High

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Chairs are piled high in the rear of Oscar’s today following the Sunday closure of the Main Street landmark after 42 years. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Facebook photo

08/01/16 08:45 PM Comments (1) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Change in Imperial Avenue Sidewalk Plans

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There is a change in the Imperial Avenue sidewalk installation plans, according to Ralph Ramos of the Public Works Department. Ramos said the sidewalk, originally to be installed on the east side of Imperial Avenue and extend from Gault Avenue toward Post Road East (see WestportNow April 7, 2016), now includes a strip of sidewalk on the west side of Imperial Avenue from Baker Avenue to Thomas Road. Ramos said the change is in response to improved pedestrian and vehicle sight lines as well as a more favorable cost analysis. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matllow for WestportNow.com

08/01/16 06:57 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Letter: Praise for ‘Incredible’ Sherwood Island Lifeguards

Editor’s note: The writer of the following letter requested anonymity and while we do not normally publish anonymous letters, the reason for making an exception in this case will be clear.

To the Editor:

I would like to take a minute to give some credit where I think it’s due. In our profession, we get to see a lot of heroic acts by fellow firefighters, police officers and other emergency personnel where they are given either awards or public praise for their actions.

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Sherwood Island State Park lifeguards in the water during Sunday’s rescue operation. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Sometimes though, I feel it’s the ones who maybe aren’t in the public eye as often that can be left out—specifically the lifeguards who keep watch over and protect our beaches. 

Late yesterday afternoon, we received a call for multiple drowning victims at Sherwood Island State Park. My company was the the first fire department unit to arrive on scene. Two victims had been rescued by another beach goer.

A third victim was still reported to be in the water. Needless to say, the scene was chaotic.

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08/01/16 03:35 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Talking Transportation: Don’t Blame Malloy for the Fare Hikes

By Jim Cameron

Special to WestportNow

Sure, it was sleazy of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CDOT) to release news of a proposed 5 percent fare hike on Metro-North on a Friday afternoon in July, hoping nobody would notice.
But the more I dig into the proposal, the more I realize the governor and CDOT are not to blame.

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It’s the Connecticut legislature that’s really responsible for this fare hike.

Lawmakers this session left the governor with a $192 million budget shortfall and every other branch of government has taken budget cuts and layoffs as a result.  Now it’s transportation’s turn to feel the pinch.

Pols on both sides of the aisle tell me Malloy could have saved millions by facing down the state employees’ unions and their rich benefits package. Could’ve, maybe should’ve—but didn’t.

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08/01/16 02:35 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 14 Westport Ave.

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An application for a permit to demolish the house at Westport’s 14 Westport Ave. in the Compo Beach section is in process. Built in 1932, the two-story conventional has 1,400-square feet, is situated on a .11-acre property and changed ownership last month for $1,250,000. Because the house was built more than 50 years ago, the application will be reviewed by the Westport Historic District Commission. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

08/01/16 01:13 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Cleaning Up at Oscar’s

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Oscar’s employees Javiar Torrico (l) and Chris Dolores clean up today after the Main Street eatery closed Sunday after 42 years.  A large sign from a real estate broker went up in the front window today saying the space is available for lease. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

08/01/16 12:01 PM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Nostalgic Visit

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It was a nostalgic visit today to the now shuttered Oscar’s on Main Street for sisters (l-r) Ali Pappageorge, 44, and Melissa, 41, With them was Melissa’s daughter Taylor, 15, an 11th grade student at Fairfield’s Ludlowe High School. Melissa said her father, Lee, Oscar’s owner, is getting stronger every day at Yale-New Haven Hospital where he is battling lung cancer. A real estate sign saying the space is available for lease went up in the front window today. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

08/01/16 11:55 AM Comments (0) • PermalinkEmail Favicon Facebook Favicon LinkedIn Favicon

Cop Arrest Homeless Man for Theft, Threatening to Kill Cashier

Officers arrested a homeless man Sunday for stealing money from the tip jar at SoNo Baking Company and for threatening to kill the cashier, police said today.

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Dave Phillips: held on $2,500 bond. Westport Police photo

According to Lt. David Farrell, the incident at the 44 Church Lane eatery happened around 8:30 a.m.

He said that officers later found a male matching the description of the suspect, who had fled the scene on a bicycle, at the Gillespie Center, the town’s homeless shelter on Jesup Road.

Dave Phillips, 55, was charged with threatening, disorderly conduct and sixth-degree larceny, police said.

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Property Transfers
property transfers

Westport Property Transfers Sept. 5 - 9, 2016

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Obituaries

James T. Hurley, 84

Leona E. Feeney, 97

Arts & Leisure

Granger at the Movies: ‘Deepwater Horizon,’ ‘The Magnificent Seven,’ ‘Storks’

Family Winners in Photo Competition

Business

Sikorsky Incentives Win Bipartisan Approval in Special Session

Comings & Goings: Sports Attic Opens

Community

Compo Sunset - 1

Compo Sunset - 2

Health & Fitness

Comings & Goings: Fountain of Youth Closes Retail Outlet

For Zika, West Nile, Health District Urges‘Bug Smarts’

Education

Farewell to Board of Ed

‘It Looks Wimpy to Pick on the Little Guy’

Politics

Sikorsky Incentives Win Bipartisan Approval in Special Session

Melissa Joan Hart Backs Gary Johnson

Real Estate

Real Estate Report: Transitioning Neighborhoods

WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 43 High Point Road

Sports

Comings & Goings: Sports Attic Opens

Captains En Masse

Special Reports
Special Reports

Westport Birders Are Devoted Flock

At 95, Ed Vebell Still Drawing on History

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