Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Sponsors

LWV Hosts ‘Pie & Politics’

WestportNow.com Image
Pizza pie was the pie tonight as the League of Women Voters of Westport hosted its annual “Pie & Politics” session at the Red Barn Restaurant with local legislators, including (l-r) state Sen. Tony Hwang, state Rep. Gail Lavielle, state Rep. Jonathan Steinberg, and state Sen. Toni Boucher. Transportation, roads, tolls, bridges, and housing, especially state statute 8-30g, were among the topics discussed. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

RTM Approves Changes to Police and Fire Pensions

WestportNow.com Image
RTM member Jack Klinge addresses tonight’s meeting as Human Resources Director Ralph Chetcuti listens.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Westport’s Representative Town Meeting (RTM) tonight unanimously approved technical changes to the Fire and Police departments’ defined pension plans.

Human Resources Director Ralph Chetcuti presented the requests necessitated to update the plans to conform to government regulations.

Prior to the first vote, RTM member Jack Klinge said that he hoped it would be the last of the RTM’s defined benefits votes, as the town has moved toward defined, 401K contributions instead of defined benefits for employees.

The plans run through 2016, at which time the town is expected to request wholesale changes to the plans. Copies are available in the Finance Department office.

Driver in I-95 Double Fatal Faces 15 Years in Prison

A Bridgeport man faces up to 15 years in prison after accepting a plea deal in a double fatal crash on the Westport stretch of I-95 three years ago, The Hour of Norwalk said.

WestportNow.com Image
State police said the vehicle rolled over multiple times before ending up in the embankment near Maple Avenue. Contributed photo

Jamain Allen, 35, on Monday entered pleas of nolo contendere—meaning he does not dispute or admit the charges but accepts punishment—in Norwalk Superior Court to charges of vehicular manslaughter, second-degree assault with a motor vehicle, operation of a motor vehicle while under the influence and operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license, the report said

He faces a minimum of seven years and maximum of 15 years in prison and also will serve five years of probation after his prison sentence is completed. He will be sentenced on March 9, the newspaper said.

State police said Allen was intoxicated and high on marijuana when he crashed his fiancee Jennifer Shaver’s 2005 Nissan Altima while driving at a high rate of speed north on I-95 near Maple Avenue in Westport south of exit 19 on New Year’s Day 2012. (See WestportNow Jan. 1, 2012)

Comings & Goings: The Textiles Stores Closing

WestportNow.com Image
After 75 years in business, 55 at its current Westport location, The Textile Stores, 415 Post Road East in the Compo Shopping Center, will close at the end of February, according to Lori Yanell (above), daughter of owner Marty Yanell. She is the granddaughter of founder Samuel Unofsky who, she said, started the business in South Norwalk in 1940.  Yanell said, “We’re following in the path of Silver’s—the rents have gone just too high.”  Describing how long she has been associated with the business she said, “I was practically born in the back of the store.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Residents Take Aim at Development of White Barn Preserve

By James Lomuscio

In freezing temperatures and falling snow, a small group of die-hard preservationists gathered today at the White Barn Preserve at 78 Cranbury Road on the Norwalk-Westport border to save property that up until recently they had thought was safe from high-density, housing development.

WestportNow.com Image
A developer plans to put 21 homes on the White Barn property on the Westport-Norwalk border. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com

Not so.

At issue for the 10 persons from Norwalk and Westport, who were joined by state Rep. Gail Lavielle, who serves both towns, is the New Canaan-based Fieber Group’s Plans to put in 21, 3,800-square-foot homes on the 15-acre property, 5.5 acres of which has conservation easements.

Fieber, under the name of Special Properties II, LLC, has applied to the City of Norwalk for a special permit to construct a “conservation development.”

Staples Coach Suspended After Fight Outside Bar

WestportNow.com Image
David Bernstein: suspended. Fairfield Police photo

Staples High School has suspended wrestling coach David Bernstein after he was arrested Saturday following a fight outside a Fairfield bar, The Hour of Norwalk reported.

Staples Athletic Director Marty Lisevick said Jesse Koproski, an assistant coach, will take over.

“He has been suspended pending the outcome of the investigation,” Lisevick said.

Bernstein, 27, of Fairfield, who also had an outstanding warrant in Bridgeport on a motor vehicle charge, was released after posting a $500 bond.

Steinberg Named Majority Whip at Large

At the start of his third term serving Westport, state Rep. Jonathan P. Steinberg Monday was named Majority Whip at Large, in addition to receiving several committee assignments.

WestportNow.com Image
Jonathan Steinberg: gets committee assignments. Contributed photo

Speaker of the House Brendan Sharkey (D-Hamden) named Steinberg, a Democrat representing the 136th District, to the Transportation, Finance Revenue & Bonding, Energy and Technology, and Government Administration & Elections Committees.

He is new to the Government Administration and & Elections Committee. He is no longer on the Aging Committee, and he is no longer a vice chair of the Energy and Technology Committee, according to the new assignments.

“As a leader within our caucus, Rep. Steinberg has the experience and ability to help improve the quality of life for everyone in Connecticut, while at the same time representing the interests of the families of Westport,” Sharkey said. “Jonathan will play a key role in moving our legislative agenda forward this session.”