Westport’s Board of Education tonight approved a proposed $118,913,712 operating budget for 2018-19, a $4,536,366 or 3.97 percent increase over the current year.
The board approved budget is a $256,490 decrease from Schools Superintendent Colleen Palmer’s proposed $119,170,202 budget.
In hammering out the budget, Palmer and the school board admitted they had little room for cutting due to increased medical claims trending unfavorably for the district. All cuts had to be judicious, they said, so as not negatively affect what goes on in the classroom.
Among the decreases carved out were: a $70,000 cut from building projects offset by office reconfiguration; $37,600 trimmed for daily substitute teachers; $100,000 from teacher regular education; and extracurricular curriculum stipend cuts.
Washington – Connecticut’s Democratic senators today helped block a bill in the Senate that would have outlawed abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
The Senate’s vote on the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act” was 51-46, but the GOP needed 60 votes to overcome a Democratic filibuster of the bill.
Earlier today at a Hartford news conference, Sen. Richard Blumenthal condemned Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s decision to put the bill to a Senate vote. The measure to restrict abortion has been approved in the U.S. House several times.
“It is shameful and disgraceful that this measure should be before Congress,” Blumenthal said. “Hands off women’s health care.”
Staples High School teacher Cathy Schager’s Contemporary World Class today hosted a Disarm Gun Violence Forum to discuss gun violence in a modern context. Participants included Deputy Police Chief Sam Arciola; Jonathan Perloe, Connecticut Against Gun Violence programs and communications director; Selectwoman Melissa Kane, and local attorney Joshua Koskoff.The forum was moderated by Staples Senior Nicole Arellano. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Charlie Colasurdo for WestportNow.com
A dozen House Democratic legislators pledged today to propose a bill in the upcoming legislative session to establish electronic tolling throughout highways in Connecticut — a pitch that has been made numerous times in recent years but has failed to win approval.
The measure would empower the Department of Transportation to establish tolls, which eventually would become the chief source of revenue for the Special Transportation Fund. The fund’s chief sources of revenue now are fuel taxes.
Proponents of tolls say the investment is necessary to bail out the fund that supports transportation construction projects, and dismissed criticism that the money would just be raided to help cover the state’s operating budget, as has been done in the past.
“I promise you if we do this, this state will thrive,” said state Rep. Tony Guerrera, D-Rocky Hill, the longtime House chair of the legislature’s Transportation Committee.
In “Call Me By Your Name,” director Luca Guadagnino chronicles the confusing, often conflicting sexual urges and coming-of-age of an introverted adolescent experiencing his first romance.
Set in a picturesque 17th century villa in a small, bucolic town near Lake Garda in northern Italy during the summer of 1983, a dramatic conflict erupts when restless 17-year-old musician Elio (Timothee Chalamet) encounters 24-year-old Oliver (Armie Hammer), a visiting American graduate student.
Ostensibly there to help Elio’s father (Michael Stuhlbarg), an eminent professor of Greco-Roman culture, confident, curious Oliver casually befriends capricious Elio, not realizing that his seductive presence has awakened Elio’s youthful ardor. Although both Elio and Oliver have dalliances with local women, an engaging, erotic, clandestine attraction soon develops between them.
Adapted by James Ivory from Andre Aciman’s 2007 autobiographical novel and sumptuously photographed by Sayombhu Mukdeeprom, it’s a showcase for Oscar-nominated Timothee Chalamet, who exhibits heartbreakingly raw awkwardness, coupled with infectious enthusiasm.
Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 1076 Post Road East, today hosted a discussion of “Regeneration” by Pat Barker as part of WestportREADS. The event was led by Kelle Ruden, former Westport Library staff member serving in her role as a Westport Arts Advisory Committee member. Barker’s World War I novel explores the psychological effects of war, as well as issues of class and politics. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
UPDATE Officers arrested a Westport man on child pornography charges following a warranted search of his electronic devices found to contain at least 45 pornographic images involving children, police said today.
Robert Kelly: free on $100,000 bond. Westport Police photo
According to Lt. Jillian Cabana, Robert Kelly, 43, turned himself in today on an active arrest warrant. The Westport Library website lists him as “manager, collection curation.”
The incident dates back to August when Westport officers received information from the Connecticut State Police Computer Crime Unit of suspected child pornography being shared online.
“The complaint involved an unidentified person in Westport sharing a picture of child pornography over Facebook with another unidentified person who does not reside in Connecticut,” Cabana said.