Tuesday, March 28, 2006
To the Editor:
Connecticut residents and businesses have recently experienced one of the largest energy rate hikes the state has seen in years. It is for this reason that I am writing you to as a Commissioner of the Department of Public Utility Control (DPUC). The DPUC has developed a variety of programs and services available to electric ratepayers that will help them understand and address the high increases in energy costs.
Most immediately, the DPUC has partnered with Connecticut Public Television and the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund to release a television series entitled “Connecticut Energy: On the Line.” This program features five 30-minute documentaries and a town meeting broadcast that will investigate power, price and performance while examining energy issues in Connecticut and unraveling the complexities of the energy marketplace.
Residents will find out how fuel costs are affecting their electric bills, how the electric grid operates and about the challenges of demand response and load control. There will also be information about renewable energy and ways to conserve and use energy more efficiently.
Each episode in the series will discuss a current energy topic in a simple and easily understood format. It will explore how we can, individually and as a whole, reduce our electric usage along with year round energy saving tips. The programs will take a close look at the next generation and what we all need to do moving forward to avoid a future energy crisis.
The next episode, episode 3, premiers Thursday, April 20 at 9 p.m. The remaining airdates are: Episode 4 on May 18 at 9 p.m. and Episode 5 in June 2006 (date to be determined.) There will also be a live town meeting to be aired on April 11 at 8 p.m.
The series is extremely informative and will help Connecticut residents not only manage their energy usage, but also explain the current increase in energy costs. I would urge all Connecticut ratepayers to please tune into CPTV to see this timely series.
For more information about the CPTV series and energy savings tips, visit The Department of Public Utility Control’s Web site at www.WattsNewCt.com.
John W. ‘Jack’ Betkoski III
10 Franklin Square
New Britain, CT 06051
Phone (860) 571-6203
Westport property transfers as reported by the Town Clerk’s office for the period March 20-24, 2006:
J. Christopher Jaffe to Nina Paris Jaffe, 10 Rowland Place, $150,000
377 Greens Farms LLC to Todd V. and Nadia Middlebrook, 377 Greens Farms Road, $3,850,000
DIV Riverside Ventures LLC to Chari B. Polley, Unit 7B Riverside Green, $835,000
KC Lai LLC to Stornebridge Medical Arts LLC, 32 Imperial Ave., $1,350,000
Norwest Homes LLC to John and Nancy Munley, 10 Sycamore Drive, $2,025,000
Ken Kaess: Westport ad executive was responsible for “Muppet Babies.” File photoDDB worldwide CEO and president Ken Kaess, who spent 30 years at DDB and rose to CEO in 2001, died Monday of cancer at his Westport home, the company said. He was 51.
“Like all of you, I will miss him very much,” wrote Omnicom Group CEO John Wren, in a memo that DDB shared with its employees. “He was the driver behind DDB’s success these last five years and, of course, I will miss him in that role. But I also will miss his friendship and positive spirit.”
Kaess took a medical leave of absence from the company in November.
A former chairman of the American Association of Advertising Agencies, Kaess was determined to diversify the industry and, in 1998, founded the Bill Bernbach Minority Scholarship Fund. In 2004, the New York Urban League honored him with an award in the name of Frederick Douglas for promoting diversity and opportunity.
Town officials are currently reviewing a demolition application for the house at 39 Danbury Ave. The home, which is in the Compo Beach area, was built in 1939 and sold last June for $1,730,000. Because of the home’s age, the Westport Historic District Commission will review the application. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
Tricia Raneri is the second assistant principal to announce she will be leaving the Westport school system.
Raneri sent an e-mail to parents last week saying she will leave her post at Bedford Middle School.
She wrote she is taking the principal job at Old Greenwich Elementary School.
“I cannot say enough wonderful things about Bedford and about all the families I traveling with your children on their journey through middle school,” Raneri wrote to parents. “I appreciate all your support for me over the years and I look forward to finishing the year with you and your children.”
7 p.m. – Town Hall Green Room – Board of Assessment Appeals
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201/201A – Zoning Board of Appeals
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Architectural Review Board
The Westport Board of Finance voted unanimously tonight to cut $1 million from the proposed 2006-07 school budget, but members said the cut should not come from educational programs.
Instead, finance board members said the money should be taken from the school system’s insurance fund.
School officials will have a final opportunity to ask for some or all of the money be restored before the Board of Finance makes its final budget recommendation on April 5.
The finance board reviewed all of the town’s budgets tonight, but only made changes to the school board’s budget.
By Jim CameronSpecial to WestportNow
We all know what happened when Boston decided to bury its downtown elevated interstate highway, known as the central artery. What was intended to be a seven-year, $2.5 billion project became a 10-year, $14.6 billion engineering nightmare.
Well, heads up fellow commuters and taxpayers. The MTA has similar designs on our beloved Grand Central. Nicknamed the “East Side Access” project, the goal is to bring the Long Island Railroad into Grand Central.
The plan would see use of the lower level of the 63rd Street subway tunnel, allowing some LIRR trains from Queens to enter Manhattan and then follow a new, very deep tunnel under existing Metro-North tracks beneath Park Avenue. Trains would terminate 14 stories under Grand Central on eight tracks with up to 24 trains per hour.
Exiting passengers, an estimated 162,000 per day, would be whisked upward on high speed escalators, to the west side of GCT, with an underground concourse complex stretching from 43rd to 48th Streets.
Gordon Joseloff: will describe life as first selectman. Contributed photo“Westport - The First Selectman’s View” will be the subject of First Selectman Gordon Joseloff’s address to the Westport Rotary Club Tuesday. The public is invited to attend the luncheon at Westport’s Inn at Longshore from 12:15 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Joseloff, who is also a member of the Rotary Club, will discuss his first four months in office. He will outline his plans for the town, including his efforts to improve emergency preparedness, provide expanded senior tax relief, and make technology advances, among other initiatives.
Joseloff is a Westporter whose family ties to the town go back 90 years. He attended Saugatuck Elementary School and Bedford Elementary School (now Town Hall) and was among the first students to attend Coleytown Elementary School when it opened in 1953.
Joseloff’s award-winning, around-the-world journalism career includes more than two decades with United Press International and CBS News in New York, London, Moscow, and Tokyo covering many of the world’s major news events. In 1984, he was awarded an “Emmy” for his coverage of the assassination of India’s Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. He returned to Westport in 1989.
Monday, March 27, 2006
Westport Human Services Director Barbara Butler announced today that the Westport Youth Commission is seeking nominations for the annual James S. Bacharach “Service to the Community” award. All qualified Westport high school seniors are eligible for the community service honor.
The award, given to one or more Westport high school seniors, recognizes significant community service contributions in Westport. Citations have been given annually since 1989 as a tribute to the late James S. Bacharach, a founder and past president of the Youth Adult Council. The council was predecessor of the Westport Youth Commission, which Bacharach and other concerned citizens founded in 1974.
“Successful applicants must demonstrate exemplary leadership ability and high standards of community service,” said Butler. “Anyone may nominate a deserving student or high school seniors are free to nominate themselves.”
Applications will be available online a www.westportyouthcommission.org, in the counseling offices at Staples High School, Greens Farms Academy, Hopkins School, at the Westport Public Library, and from the Department of Human Services at Town Hall.
The Wednesday, April 5 Citizens Brown Bag Luncheon will be held at the Westport Country Playhouse.
The session starts at noon and will be held in the Sheffer Rehearsal Hall.
Artistic Director Tazewell Thompson will discuss plans for the 2006 season.
“This is an opportunity for Westporters to find out what’s coming up in the 2006 season at the Playhouse,” First Selectman Gordon Joseloff said in a press statement. “It will also be a chance for citizens to see the recently renovated Playhouse if they have not seen it before.”
For more information, call the selectman’s office at (203) 341-1111.
Westport’s Burger King will become an Arby’s if the Planning and Zoning Commission approves changes to the restaurant at 1000 Post Road East. The restaurant chain, with the theme “Now that your tastes have grown up,” features roast beef sandwiches as well as deli-style sandwiches, wraps and salads. Recently, the Atlanta-based company began offering its Arby’s “Chicken Naturals” product line. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
7 p.m. – Town Hall Green Room – Board of Assessment Appeals
7:30 p.m. – Town Hall Auditorium – Board of Finance Formal Budget Hearing -Selectman and Board of Education budgets (cable channel 79)
Sunday, March 26, 2006
This is “Music in Our School Month” and students at Westport’s Green’s Farms Elementary School were among those taking part. First graders in Suzanne Sherman Propp’s class celebrated by singing “Hedwig’s Theme” (Harry Potter) with piano accompaniment by Kayla Manion. Each grade has had performances by talented students throughout the month showcasing a variety of instruments. The celebration concludes Tuesday with the town-wide Elementary Spring Festival at Long Lots Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
William Grassie: talking science and religion. Contributed photoThe Westport-Weston Interfaith Council will hold a community forum on “Science and the Sacred: Towards the Constructive Engagement of Religion and Science” today at 4 p.m. at the Unitarian Church, 10 Lyons Plains Road, Westport.
The forum features Dr. William Grassie, executive director of the Metanexus Institute. The discussion is an “introduction and invitation to join in the challenging and exciting dialogue between the estranged domains of science and religion,” according to an announcement.
The Philadelphia-based Metanexus Institute says its mission is “to seek to create an enduring intellectual and social movement by collaborating with persons and communities from diverse religious traditions and scientific disciplines.”
Admission is free, and refreshments will be served.
4 p.m. - Unitarian Church, 10 Lyons Plains Road - Community Forum of Westport-Weston Interfaith Council on “Science and the Sacred: Towards the Constructive Engagement of Religion and Science”
An ambulance from Westport’s Volunteer Emergency Medical Service was among the vehicles at today’s “Touch-A-Truck” event at Coleytown Elemenary School. EMS volunteer Norman Coltin gave youngsters the tour. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ron Malone for WestportNow.com
Getting behind the wheel of a Gault Fuel truck brought smiles to the face of this young lady at today’s “Touch-A-Truck” event at Westport’s Coleytown Elementary School. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ron Malone for WestportNow.com
Saturday, March 25, 2006
Westport property transfers as reported by the Town Clerk’s office for the period March 13-17, 2006:
Edward H. and Susan F. Robbins to Steven and Lauren Rosen, 10 Arrowhead Road, $1,651,000
Old Hill Farms LLC to Jacques and Wendy Bouthillier, 26 Old Hill Farms Road, $2,000,000
Antionette Denvendorf to Carol Ann Dravis, 37 Guyer Road, $300,000
Carol Ann Dravis to Antoinette Devendorf, Unit 27 Whitney Glen, $175,000
Allen G. Schnapp Living Trust o Nitin and Gayatri S. Batra, 15 Hen Hawk Lane, $1,250,000
There was hands-on fun at today’s “Touch-A-Truck” event at Westport’s Coleytown Elementary School. The event was a fund-raiser for the Westport-Weston Cooperative Nursery School. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
If you missed the Westport Historical Society’s 2002 sold-out tour of the 1777 British invasion route of Westport and surrounding towns, you’ll have another chance next month.
A painting owned by the Westport Historical Society depicts the 1777 British landing at Compo Beach. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Contributed photo
The Society is repeating the blockbuster “The British Are Coming” bus tour Sunday, April 9, boarding at Compo Beach at 10 a.m. at the cannons and returning there at 3 p.m. – rain or shine.
The route of the 1777 British incursion to Danbury and the hasty retreat and narrow escape to their ships off Compo Beach is closely followed on this 60-mile, narrated tour in the deluxe, 55-passenger motor coach, an announcement said.
A group from the Y’s Men of Westport/Weston traveled to Hartford Thursday to tour the Wadsworth Museum and to see a rare collection of Rodin statuary. They were later given a private tour of the State Capitol and met with State Sen. Judith G. Freedman and Westport Reps. Rep. Joe Mioli and Cathy Tymniak. Pictured is Mioli briefing the visitors in the legislative chamber. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Paul Cohen for WestportNow.com
Among trucks on display today at the “Touch-a-Truck” event at Westport’s Coleytown Elementrary School beginning at 10 a.m. is a “hook” truck owned by Ron Malone, a WestportNow contributing photographer (who will also have his camera). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Ron Malone for WestportNow.com
10 a.m. - Coleytown Elementary School - Westport-Weston Cooperative Nursery School “Touch-a-Truck”
2 p.m. - Westport Historical Society - Walking Tour of Downtown District
4 p..m. and 8 p.m. - Westport Country Playhouse - “On the Verge”
Staples senior D. J. Steflkovich, a football team co-captain, modeled some sportswear tonight along with cheerleader Allison Westrup at the Staples Varsity Vogue Fashion Show and Auction at Mitchells of Westport. Coach Marce Petroccio (l) was master of ceremonies. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com