Posts Tagged ‘Connecticut’

Feds approve $17m for Springfield station

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

Cross posted courtesy of the Associated Press


SPRINGFIELD — Plans to make Springfield a regional transportation hub have taken a step forward with federal approval of $17 million for the city’s Union Station redevelopment.

The city’s chief development officer told The Republican that the $17 million is the final piece of the $45 million total project.

The Springfield Redevelopment Authority said Tuesday that demolition on the project is expected to start in October or November.

The first phase of the Union Station Regional Intermodal Transportation Center, which includes a bus terminal, is expected to be open in late 2014.

Union Station was built in 1926 and closed in 1973.

The station redevelopment is part of a larger federal project to improve passenger rail service north and south through Springfield from Vermont south to New Haven, Conn.

President Obama has signed the Connecticut Emergency Declaration

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

President Obama has signed the Connecticut Emergency Declaration. See email from the White House below.

Please contact Colleen Flanagan with any questions.

Colleen Flanagan
Director of Communications
Governor Dannel P. Malloy


Office of the Press Secretary

August 27, 2011

President Obama Signs Connecticut Emergency Declaration

The President today declared an emergency exists in the State of Connecticut and ordered federal aid to supplement state and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions resulting from Hurricane Irene beginning on August 26, 2011, and continuing.

The President’s action authorizes the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), to coordinate all disaster relief efforts which have the purpose of alleviating the hardship and suffering caused by the emergency on the local population, and to provide appropriate assistance for required emergency measures, authorized under Title V of the Stafford Act, to save lives and to protect property and public health and safety, and to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe in all counties in the State of Connecticut.

Specifically, FEMA is authorized to identify, mobilize, and provide at its discretion, equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency. Emergency protective measures, including direct federal assistance, will be provided at 75 percent federal funding.

W. Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Department of Homeland Security, named Gary Stanley as the Federal Coordinating Officer for federal recovery operations in the affected area.



WALLINGFORD – Updated Hurricane Irene information via the town website – Hurricane Irene – Shelter Information

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

Credit where credit is due – the town has done a good job of providing information regarding the upcoming storm.

Here are the links as provided by the Wallingford Municipal Website.

As originally published – Hurricane Irene – Shelter Information

Wallingford Police Department
Shelter Information


Routine Police and Fire Department Services

Routine Electric Power Outages

The shelter for Hurricane Irene, if and when declared open, will be Mark T. Sheehan High School 142 Hope Hill Road, Wallingford, CT. 06492.



• Photo identification (Driver’s License)

• Baby food/formula, diapers, wipes, teething gel, ointment

• Change of clothing

• Blankets

• Food& snacks, non-perishable, 3-day supply

• Sleeping bags

• Cell phone

• Pillows

• Flashlight& extra batteries

• Hygiene or sanitary products

• Battery powered radio & extra batteries

• Medications, prescription & over-the-counter

• Eyeglasses

• Entertainment (toys, books, games, etc.)

• Dentures

• Cash, checkbook, credit cards


Important Papers:

• Social security cards

• Proof of residence (deed or lease)

• Insurance policies

• Birth certificate

• Marriage certificate

• Stocks, bonds, and other negotiable certificates

• Wills, deeds, copies of recent tax returns

WALLINGFORD – Updated Hurricane Irene information via the town website – Precautions During Storm Conditions

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

Credit where credit is due – the town has done a good job of providing information regarding the upcoming storm.

Here are the links as provided by the Wallingford Municipal Website.

As originally published – Precautions During Storm Conditions


Power Outages

This storm is expected to arrive this weekend with the strongest winds forecast between Sunday, 4:00 a.m., through midnight. Power outages will occur. Prepare to be without power for 3 – 5 day, perhaps longer.

To report an outage, please call the Wallingford Electric Division at: 203-265-5055. If busy, please wait a few minutes and try again. Only call if your power is out.

If you encounter any downed wires, assume that they are live and stay away at 25 feet.


Flooding Prone Areas

This storm is forecast to produce an average of 10 inches of rainfall. In some areas more the 14 inches will fall. This will cause extensive flooding of streams and rivers that will quickly overrun their banks. This causes an extremely dangerous situation for residents as well as public safety workers. Plans should be made to voluntarily evacuate these flood prone areas.


Vehicles Crossing Moving Water

Most cars will float (and be swept away) in 18-24 inches of moving water. Trucks and SUVs are not much better with only 6 – 12 more inches of clearance. Creeks and rivers can rise very rapidly and the road bottoms can also wash away making the water much deeper than it appears.


Traffic Control

Power outages mean traffic lights will be out of order.

Police officers will not be able to respond to every intersection.

Motorist must stop at all intersections that have inoperable traffic lights to make sure that it is safe to proceed.

WALLINGFORD – Updated Hurricane Irene information via the town website – Huracán Irene – Recomendaciones para Prepararse para el Huracán

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

Credit where credit is due – the town has done a good job of providing information regarding the upcoming storm.

Here are the links as provided by the Wallingford Municipal Website.

As originally published – Recomendaciones para Prepararse para el Huracán

FYI – I don’t know Spanish so I am taking this off the website as is; if there are any clarifications or anything needs to be appended I am sure one of my friends that knows Spanish will help me out. (Where are Dora and Boots when you really need them?)

Departamento de Policía de Wallingford

Información sobre refugio

Llamadas de Emergencia 9-1-1

Para reportar pérdida de energía eléctrica 203-265-5055

Servicios Rutinarios de los Departamentos de Policía y Bomberos 203-294-2800

El refugio para el Huracán Irene, en caso de y cuando se declare la emergencia será
Mark T. Sheehan
High School
142 Hope Hill Road, Wallingford, CT. 06492.


• Documento de identificación con foto (Licencia de conducir)

• Comida para bebés/formula, pañales, pañitos húmedos, gel para las encías, pomada

• Mudas de ropa

• Cobijas

• Alimentos & refrigerios, no perecederos con suministro para 3 días

• Sleeping bags

• Teléfono celular

• Almohadas

• Linternas y pilas adicionales

• Productos de limpieza sanitaria

• Radio de pilas con pilas adicionales

• Medicinas recetadas y sin receta médica

• Anteojos

• Objetos para entretenerse (juguetes, libros, juegos, etc.)

• Dentadura postiza

• Dinero en efectivo, chequera, tarjetas de crédito

Documentos Importantes:

• Tarjeta de Seguro Social

• Prueba de Residencia (escritura o contrato de arriendo)

• Pólizas de Seguro

• Certificado de Nacimiento

• Certificado de Matrimonio

• Acciones, bonos y otros certificados negociables

•Testamentos, escrituras, copias recientes de formularios de impuestos.

Consejos/Recomendaciones Para Prepararse Para el Huracán

Conozca la Diferencia

Estar Pendiente de la Tormenta (Hurricane Watch)

Las condiciones del huracán representan una amenaza en 36 horas. Revise sus planes para el huracán, manténgase informado y esté listo para reaccionar si se emite una advertencia.

Advertencia de Huracán (Hurricane Warning)

Las condiciones del huracán se esperan dentro de 24 horas. Complete sus preparaciones para la tormenta y salga del área si las autoridades así lo indican.

Recomendaciones para Prepararse para el Huracán

  • Escuche la estación de radio “NOAA Weather” para recibir importante información del Servicio Nacional del Estado del Tiempo.

  • Guarde adentro de la casa todo lo que pueda ser levantado por el viento (Bicicletas, muebles del patio etc.)

  • Ponga el termostato de la nevera en el punto más frío y manténgalo cerrado lo máximo posible, de esa manera los alimentos durarán más tiempo si se pierde la energía eléctrica

  • Llene el tanque de gasolina de su vehículo

  • Prepare un plan de evacuación

  • Planee rutas al refugio local

  • Agua – Por lo menos un gallón diario por persona de 3 a 7 días

  • Alimentos – suficiente para por lo menos de 3 a 7 días empacado de manera no perecedera o enlatada/jugos, alimentos para bebés o ancianos, refrigerios, abridor de lata no eléctrico, materiales para cocinar/combustible, platos/cubiertos de plástico

  • Botiquín de Primeros Auxilios / Medicinas / Medicinas con Receta Médica

  • Linterna / Pilas

  • Radio de pilas y en la estación de “NOAA Weather”

  • Teléfonoscompletamente cargados y con batería adicional

  • Dinero en Efectivo (con billetes de cantidades pequeñas) y tarjetas de crédito- Bancos y cajeros automáticos no estarán disponibles por algún tiempo

  • LLaves

  • Documentos – en un contenedor o paquete a prueba de agua o (seguros, documentos médicos, número de cuentas bancarias, tarjeta del seguro social, etc.).

  • Objetos para el cuidado de las mascotas para el hogar y para la evacuación hacia un refugio. Identificaciónadecuada / información sobre inmunizaciones / medicamentos / gran cantidad de alimentos y agua, una caja o cargador de mascotas o jaula, bozal y correa

Areas Propensas a Inundaciones

Esta tormenta pronostica producir una cantidad aproximada de 10 pulgadas de agua de lluvia, en algunas aéreas puede llegar a 14 pulgadas. Esto ocasionará enormes crecimientos en las quebradas y los ríos que pronto ocasionarán inundaciones en sus riberas. Esto pone a los residentes en el área en una situación muy peligrosa al igual que a los trabajadores de la seguridad pública. Las personas que viven en estas áreas más propensas a las inundaciones deberían hacer planes de evacuación de manera voluntaria.

Vehículos Cruzando en Agua en Movimiento

La mayoría de los carros flotarán (y se irán arrastrados) en niveles de de 18 a 24 pulgadas de agua en movimiento.Camiones y camionetas no resisten más de 6 a 12 pulgadas adicionales. Quebradas y ríos pueden crecer rápidamente y el fondo de las vías también puede desaparecer haciendo el agua más profunda de lo que parece.

Control del Tráfico

¡Suspensiones en el servicio de energía eléctrica significan que los semáforos no estarán funcionando!

Los oficiales de la policía no podrán estar presentes en todas las intersecciones. Los conductores deben parar en todas las intersecciones que tengan semáforos que no estén funcionando, para cerciorarse que es seguro seguir adelante.

Information meeting set Aug. 4th regarding the New Haven-Hartford-Springfield commuter rail project

Friday, July 22nd, 2011

As published in the Record Journal Friday July 22, 2011

WALLINGFORD — The office of Mayor William W. Dickinson Jr. will sponsor a public information meeting at 6:30 p.m. Aug. 4 in the Town Council chambers at the Town Hall, 45 S. Main St.

Representatives from the Connecticut Department of Transportation and their consultant team will provide an update on the New Haven-Hartford-Springfield commuter rail project and its impact on Wallingford and possible station locations, including the property on South Cherry Street next to Judd Square Condominiums.

After the presentation, a question-and-answer session will be open to all attendees.

For information, call the mayor’s office at (203) 294-2070 or the engineering department at (203) 294-2035.

DMV windshield registration stickers are no longer required in CT

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

DMV windshields registration stickers are no longer required in CT

Video (wmv) – watch a 1 minute video about DMV discontinuing registration stickers.

Podcast (mp3)


Beginning August 1 vehicle owners in Connecticut can peel off that front window registration sticker as part of customer-service improvements the Department of Motor Vehicles is making in the vehicle registration system.

Vehicle owners in Connecticut will be able to legally drive without stickers and people either renewing or applying for a new registration will only receive the official paper registration, which still must be carried in the vehicle at all times. Customers can learn more about the change through a special DMV web page:

"This change of eliminating a sticker and taking away an unnecessary step in the registration process is part of creating a 21st Century DMV that is more modern and efficient by improving service to customers," said DMV Commissioner Robert M. Ward. He said that eliminating the sticker and making a few other changes in mailings will save the state nearly $1 million annually.

"Three and a half years ago when I became DMV Commissioner, I focused on looking at ways to improve services to customers by streamlining how we do things. This is another step in that direction," he added.

As a customer service, this change will benefit vehicle owners statewide by cutting down on steps needed to properly register their vehicles. Connecticut in 1903 was among the first states in the nation to require a vehicle to be registered, in 1911 started change plate colors annually to coincide with yearly vehicle registration renewals and in 1937 began using annually on license plates a different colored metal insert, which is the predecessor of the affixed sticker, for signifying a properly registered vehicle.

Major technological changes now make stickers unnecessary because registration enforcement can be done through computer checks. For instance, DMV provides law enforcement with electronic information allowing police officers to check the validity of a marker plate from a patrol car. DMV has also worked with law enforcement to set up marker-plate readers in some departments around the state. These readers capture an image of a plate from a camera on the patrol car. Up-to-date registration information from the DMV goes to law enforcement to use with these readers.

Commissioner Ward said DMV expects eliminating the stickers will save about $400,000 per year, which is an important savings during a time when the state faces a multi-billion-dollar deficit. In addition, DMV also plans a second registration improvement that is expected to save an additional $400,000 yearly, bringing the total savings to about $800,000 annually for this project.

The second change, which may begin in September, will eliminate the mailing to customers with their renewed registration certificate. Instead they will receive their registration certificate as a tear-off part of the registration application, which is mailed to them 60 days prior to its due date.

Vehicle owners will be instructed to keep the registration certificate in the vehicle after they mail a check to the DMV or complete our online renewal. The validity of their registration can be checked through the updated law-enforcement computer information systems. As part of its customer service, DMV will also provide a look-up online to determine the validity of the registration. It will let customers know whether their registration payments were processed and registrations renewed.

The agency plans a public awareness campaign through press releases, an insert in renewals to explain the change, information in law enforcement bulletins, lists of frequently asked questions on the DMV website, a newly designed general purpose envelope that highlights the change, the change will be advertised on an electronic bulletin board in DMV offices and through a video that will be shown on its web site.

The expiration sticker is being eliminated on all vehicles, including trailers and motorcycles. You may remove your valid or expired registration sticker from your vehicle on or after August 1 . Stickers for boats will continue to be issued.

Police officers and other law enforcement officials were notified of this change. The look-up system used by law enforcement will reflect that no registration sticker is required on Connecticut vehicles.

It is important that you keep your current registration certificate in your vehicle at all times. The registration certificates issued after August 1 will say “Connecticut no Longer Requires Registration Stickers.” Registration certificates issued prior to August 1, will not have this message, but require no additional action until they are up for renewal.

Lawmakers urged to lower park fees

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

As printed in the Record Journal on Thursday March 11, 2010

HARTFORD— State park advocates say Connecticut made a mistake in doubling state park and camping fees last year.

Members of the Connecti­cut Forest and Park Associa­tion, Friends of Connecticut State Parks and other park supporters appeared at the state Capitol on Wednesday to urge legislators to rescind the increase.

All Department of Environ­mental Protection fees, per­mits and licenses that had cost less than $150 were dou­bled on Oct. 1, 2009 as a way to balance the state budget.

It now costs $20 a car, in­stead of $10, for residents to visit Rocky Neck State Park in East Lyme. The price of a park pass jumped from $50 to $100 per season.

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Outward bound: Conn. is losing residents

Sunday, January 24th, 2010

By Mary Ellen Godin
Record-Journal staff 
(203) 317-2255

As published in the Record Journal Sunday January 24, 2010

Follow all the news directly on the Record Journal Website for the most up to date information.

Write a letter to the editor


After nine years in retire­ment, James and Anne Marie Thadieo saw they were spend­ing more and enjoying it less.

So they shopped around and found a smaller home in North Carolina, where they say the taxes are lower and they don’t need winter coats. They sold their house on Catherine Drive and moved in October.

“We love it here,” James Thadieo said. “I live on a fixed income and I gotta go where my dollar can get the best value. I sold my house and bought another one and we’re mortgage free.”

It’s not just the snowbirds who are heading to warmer climes; its families and job seekers, and many are staying for good.

Connecticut has seen a steady outbound migration for several years, especially among 18- to 34-year-olds. But the exodus continued to add all ages, including retirees, at the start of the recession two years ago.
“They are trying to go some­where where there are job op­portunities, the states with the best employment,” said Janice Warro, office manager for Lit­tle John’s Moving & Storage in Meriden.

A recently released study by Atlas Van Lines on 2009 migra­tion trends reports that Con­necticut had the highest per­centage of moves out of state. Out of 2,031 shipments related to the state last year, 1,230 were outbound, or 60.5 percent, with the 801 inbound shipments comprising 39 percent.

New Jersey and South Dakota followed Connecticut in the percentage of people leaving home. The state con­tinued a nine-year pattern of being classified as an out­bound state, which means that more than 55 percent of ship­ments moved out.

The report shows that peo­ple are leaving Connecticut and the Rust Belt states and moving to the Southwest pocket— with Texas, New Mexico and, for the first time in five years, Oklahoma receiv­ing more than 55 percent of shipments related to their states. Other growth areas are in Washington, D.C. — with the highest percentage of in­bound traffic— and Maryland, which made the list for the first time since the company created it in 1993. North Car­olina has been an inbound state for the past six consecu­tive years.

But according to Kerri Hart, spokeswoman for Atlas, the survey doesn’t always reflect economic patterns. For in­stance, both North and South Dakota were outbound states and their employment num­bers are high.

Bargains in distressed hous­ing markets such as Florida and Las Vegas could be driving retirees into those areas. A $350,000 home in Florida two years ago can now be bought for about $180,000, agents said. But local real estate agents said the Carolinas have sur­passed Florida as a retirement destination and for job oppor­tunities, although those have slowed with the recession.

“They’re called half-backs,” said Sandy Maier Schede, an agent with Maier Real Estate, about people who move to the Carolinas instead of Florida. “It’s warm half of the time there.”

The Las Vegas area has also become a hot spot for bargain ­hunting retirees, but not so much for people in the job market.

Household moves cooled in­dustry- wide in 2009, according to the Atlas study. The com­pany reported a 16 percent drop from 2008, but the sum­mer months were higher than average.

Not surprisingly, Rust Belt states follow closely behind Connecticut. Michigan is num­ber four for most outbound moves, with Ohio and Indiana and Missouri also considered outbound states, and Illinois shifted into the outbound col­umn this year.

Western states such as Cali­fornia, Nevada and Oregon, which have suffered job losses in construction, manufacturing and tourism, have also become less popular destinations. But the first-time homebuyer’s tax credit helped move housing in­ventory at all levels.

Joseph Criscuolo, a broker for The Home Store Real Es­tate in Wallingford, said he’s had one of his best years ever. Out of 54 transactions, three or four were out of state, includ­ing the Thadieos. The rest were moves in different areas within the state, he said.

Peter Gioia, a vice president for the Connecticut Business & Industry Association, said the employment and housing problems in Florida and Cali­fornia have helped slow some of Connecticut’s outward mi­gration of young people, al­though as the stock market re­bounds more retirees will feel more comfortable leaving.

The job market in the Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico market is brighter because of its strong export-based econ­omy with Latin America, the petroleum industry and mili­tary- industrial operations.

William Villano, executive director of Workforce Al­liance, the private firm that contracts with the state De­partment of Labor for job de­velopment in New Haven and Middlesex counties, said the contrast with the state is sig­nificant. Connecticut has lost around 90,000 jobs since the start of the recession. And al­though the numbers have lev­eled off, hiring has not picked up in any significant way. Man­ufacturing has shifted to southern states and offshore. Union construction jobs are also feeling the pinch.

“On some levels, it’s not sur­prising,” Villano said about the state’s ranking. “If you’re laid off…or if you’re going to take a pay cut, it makes sense to do it where it costs less to live.”

But the state’s unemploy­ment rate of 8.9 percent con­tinues to lag the national rate of 10 percent, and the number of initial unemployment claims decreased by more than 200 from November to De­cember— a 10 percent decline over last year, according to sta­tistics from the state DOL. However, only two major sec­tors have shown growth over the past year — health and ed­ucation.

Opportunities for young people may not be as strong in California or Florida in the past two years, but other cities in the country are doing more to attract young talent.

Affordable housing and cul­tural activities are driving young people to cities such as Austin, Texas. AT&T has in­vested millions to build and equip a technology center at the University of Texas there and maintains a strong part­nership with the school.

The company has added hundreds of jobs in Austin, Oklahoma and Nevada. In the past decade AT&T cut about 1,000 well-paying jobs in its landline customer service and repair sectors in Connecticut, but added more openings in the state for its broadband In­ternet and wireless products.

Pratt & Whitney is in a legal battle to eliminate 1,000 high ­paying jobs in its jet engine re­pair divisions in Cheshire and East Hartford. If it wins, the work will shift to Georgia and Singapore.

“The availability of quality jobs has been diminishing,” Villano said. “There are some opportunities for people who have significant skills and tal­ent. The problems with the types of jobs we’re growing (is that they) are lower-end jobs.” Paul Ott is a veteran real es­tate agent with William Raveis Real Estate in Cheshire. He’s now working with three clients in foreclosure who have moved to Texas, Florida and North Carolina, respec­tively, in the hopes of finding jobs or to be with family. In the case of one client who walked away from his home on Pad­dock Avenue in Meriden, it was for warmth.

The client, who did not want to be interviewed for this story, was laid off of from his job at Atlas Container last summer, Ott said. (The company is not related to Atlas Van Lines). He collected unem­ployment but fell behind in his payments and owed more than the home was worth.

“He said ‘It’s better to be homeless in a warmer cli­mate,’” Ott recalled. “That’s scary stuff. The jobs are not here to keep them here.”

Kathleen Quinn, operations director for the CT Works ca­reer centers, said the agency and the state labor department are working overtime to keep up with the need for services for the unemployed and un­deremployed.

“The first thing that comes to my mind is they have ex­ceeded their benefits,” Quinn said.

Connecticut has a 21-month time limit for receiving cash assistance, while the federal limit is 60 months. Often, peo­ple who have exhausted their 21-months will travel to an­other state where the limit isn’t as severe and can con­tinue to collect. “It could be people are exhausting their benefits,” Quinn said.

Governor Rell Unveils First M-8 Rail Cars

Thursday, December 24th, 2009

As published from the Governor’s Press Release page

Governor M. Jodi Rell unveiled the first two-car set of M-8 rail cars for use on the New Haven Line — one of the busiest commuter lines in the country.

The interior of the new train cars.

In 2005, Governor Rell announced that the state would buy the new cars at a cost of almost $700 million — or more than $2 million each.

Under a contract administered by the state Department of Transportation (DOT), Connecticut has ordered 300 of the new cars from Kawasaki Rail Car in Japan, scheduled for delivery over the next five years. The first ones will be added to the New Haven Line in 2010. Each car has 105 seats.

The exterior of the new train cars.

“These cars will undergo a rigorous series of tests before they can be put into service,” said DOT Commissioner Joseph F. Marie, estimating that the initial cars will require six months of testing. “This is a process that cannot be rushed and, indeed, we will be working with Kawasaki to ensure that every system is checked and rechecked, tested and re-tested. We expect these cars to last 30 to 35 years and we have an obligation to our customers to ensure that they are running flawlessly before we put them into ‘revenue service.’”

“Thanks to the M-8 pilot cars, we are not only about to begin a new year, but a new era of service on the New Haven Line in 2010,” Metro-North President Howard Permut said. “These new rail cars will enable Metro-North to provide our customers with a more efficient, reliable and comfortable commute every day.”

“This is the best holiday gift possible for commuters on Metro-North,” said Jim Cameron, Chairman of the Connecticut Metro-North Rail Commuter Council. “The Commuter Council is thrilled that our long wait for new rail cars is almost over and salutes the Governor and legislature as well as CDOT for their hard work on our behalf.”

The new cars will be maintained at the New Haven Rail Yard, which is another example of the Rell administration’s commitment to the New Haven Line. The rail yard is being completely overhauled and expanded at a cost of more than $700 million.

There are more than 35 million passenger trips on the New Haven Line every year, making it one of the nation’s most heavily used. The state-owned line is operated by Metro-North Railroad under contract to the DOT. Thousands of Connecticut residents use the train every day to get to work in Connecticut and New York.