Gov. Malloy Declares State of Emergency, Travel Ban at 9:00 pm Monday

Gov. Dannel Malloy meets with officials in the state Emergency Operations Center Monday morning.
Office of Dannel Malloy

Governor Dannel Malloy is asking residents to prepare for a significant snowstorm impacting Connecticut Monday evening through Tuesday. He declared a state of emergency, opened the Emergency Operations Center, and issued a travel ban on state highways as of 9:00 pm Monday.

Malloy said Bradley International Airport is closing to passengers at 7:00 pm Monday night. He said the last Metro-North train would leave Grand Central Station in New York City at 9:00 pm.

"Although storms can be unpredictable, this storm has the potential to have a significant impact on the state and we need to be prepared," Malloy said. "Just as the state is monitoring and preparing, the public should do the same."

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Boston
4:41 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Accused Bomber's Lawyers Say Boston Jury Pool Is Too Biased

A memorial at the site of the first explosion in the Boston Marathon bombing. Defense attorneys say too many people in the potential jury pool have some kind of personal connection to the case.
Andrew Burton Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 26, 2015 6:52 pm

The search for jurors in the case of accused Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is taking longer than expected.

Defense attorneys say it's nearly impossible to find open-minded, unbiased jurors around Boston. They're asking yet again for the judge to move the trial somewhere else.

From the beginning, defense attorneys have argued the entire jury pool has been poisoned by what they call "a narrative of guilt" from a "tidal wave" of media coverage. Now, Tsarnaev's lawyers say jurors' own comments on a court questionnaire prove widespread bias.

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Music
3:50 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Carnegie Hall Live: The Chicago Symphony Plays A Colorful Concert

Riccardo Muti leading the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
Todd Rosenberg Courtesy of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra

Originally published on Mon January 26, 2015 2:59 pm

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra arrives at Carnegie Hall with a program that portrays choppy waters and changing tides, opening with Mendelssohn's Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage Overture followed by Debussy's La mer.

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Storrs
3:31 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

UConn Cancels Classes in Advance of Winter Storm

UConn students may find some extra time for sledding on Horsebarn Hill on Tuesday.
Christine Creative Commons

The University of Connecticut announced plans to close on Monday afternoon in advance of the winter storm.

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Snowball
12:56 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Snow Cancels Everything, Except Hartford's City Council Meeting

A meeting in city council chambers in a WNPR file photo.
Jeff Cohen WNPR

The governor has declared a state of emergency. Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra has declared a snow emergency. City schools let out at noon, and most city employees were dismissed then, too. There's a parking ban in effect. Even Winterfest at Bushnell Park is closing early.

But Monday night's Hartford city council meeting must go on. 

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New York
11:58 am
Mon January 26, 2015

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver To Cede Power, Temporarily

Originally published on Mon January 26, 2015 7:05 am

The speaker of the New York state Assembly plans to temporarily cede power to a small group of top lawmakers as he fights federal corruption charges.

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Drive My Car
9:13 am
Mon January 26, 2015

For Tesla, a Fight in Connecticut to Open Stores and Sell Cars

A Tesla Motors Store in Toronto, Canada. Currently, Tesla is not allowed to sell its product directly to consumers from storefronts in Connecticut.
Wikimedia Commons

When Art Linares wanted to buy a Tesla, it wasn't as easy as walking into a store and taking a test drive. Instead, he had to go to New York -- because in Connecticut, it's illegal for a car manufacturer to sell directly to a customer.

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Ahead of the Storm
8:55 am
Mon January 26, 2015

CL&P to Customers: Prepare to Lose Power

Credit Harriet Jones / WNPR

Emails and calls are some of the ways Connecticut Light and Power has begun reaching out to its customers ahead of the expected massive snowstorm, mindful of criticism over lengthy outages during past storms. 

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Blizzard Conditions
8:30 am
Mon January 26, 2015

Southern New England Prepares for Major Winter Storm

Most likely storm totals for parts of Connecticut and New York.
National Weather Service

The National Weather Service has issued a blizzard warning for southern Connecticut beginning midday Monday, and blizzard watches remain in effect for eastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island ahead of a storm with heavy snow and high winds.

Winter storm warnings are in effect for northwestern Massachusetts, where winds will be lower.

The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency said Sunday it is preparing for a "potentially historic and destructive winter storm."

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White House
8:18 am
Mon January 26, 2015

'Quad Copter' Flew Into, Crashed On White House Grounds, Secret Service Says

The Secret Service released this photo of a "quad copter" that crashed on the White House grounds Monday. The agency says the copter's operator reported crashing it this morning.
Secret Service

Originally published on Mon January 26, 2015 3:34 pm

Updated at 3:20 p.m. ET

The Secret Service has identified a device that was found overnight on the White House grounds as a "quad copter." The agency says the person who had been operating the device reported that it crashed after they lost control.

In a statement released Monday afternoon, the Secret Service said an individual called around 9:30 this morning to "self-report" the crashed copter. The agency adds that the person has been cooperative, and that the incident seems to stem from "recreational use of the device."

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Defense Secretary
5:04 am
Mon January 26, 2015

Hagel: Stress Of 'Nonstop War' Forcing Out Good Soldiers

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.
Ariel Zambelich NPR

Originally published on Mon January 26, 2015 8:58 am

Outgoing Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, speaking to NPR's Morning Edition, says he's concerned about retaining qualified U.S. military service members amid the "stress and strain" of more than 13 years of continuous warfare in Afghanistan and Iraq.

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India
9:18 am
Sun January 25, 2015

U.S. And India Announce New Ties On First Day Of Obama's Trip

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Obama meet at Hyderabad House in New Delhi on Sunday, the first day of Obama's three-day trip to India.
UPI Landov

Originally published on Sun January 25, 2015 12:03 pm

Updated at 8:25 a.m. ET

President Obama announced Sunday that the U.S. and India have made progress on civilian nuclear trade. In a joint news conference with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi, Obama said the countries had agreed to more cooperation in other areas as well, including defense and climate change.

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Deflate-Gate
4:09 pm
Sat January 24, 2015

Patriots' Coach: Team 'Followed Rules' On Inflation Of Footballs

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick speaks during an NFL football news conference at Gillette Stadium, on Saturday in Foxborough, Mass. Belichick defended the team against allegations they had cheated by using underinflated footballs in a championship game.
Steven Senne AP

Originally published on Sat January 24, 2015 5:24 pm

New England Patriots' Head Coach Bill Belichick defended his team and quarterback Tom Brady against accusations of cheating amid the so-called "Deflategate" controversy that erupted last weekend when underinflated footballs were used in

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Infrastructure
2:32 pm
Sat January 24, 2015

Four Connecticut Transportation Proposals From Gov. Malloy

An elevated portion of I-84 in Hartford.
Ryan King WNPR

Governor Dannel Malloy announced Thursday he’d like to widen Interstate 84 in Danbury, one of many initiatives he's proposed this month.

Already in place in the state’s transportation overhaul is an expansion of the New Haven-Hartford-Springfield commuter rail -- slated for completion in 2016 -- as well as the opening of CTfastrak, a Hartford-New Britain rapid busway that will launch in March.

Meanwhile, Connecticut Department of Transportation research and public discussion surrounding the eventual replacement of the I-84 viaduct in Hartford is underway.

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Sports
9:46 am
Sat January 24, 2015

Fat Bikes: The Winter Sport Of The Future?

With tires twice the width of the standard mountain bike, fat bikes are made for snow. Some ski facilities are trying to cash in on the bikes, which are becoming a popular alternative to cross-country skiing. (Citizen 4474/Flickr via Compfight cc)

Originally published on Sat January 24, 2015 8:14 am

On a snowy December afternoon, I dropped by the Onion River Sports shop in Montpelier, the capital of Vermont. Kip Roberts, who  manages the store, said that two years ago, fat bikes went from an oddity to a hot item.

“It exploded, and we couldn’t get our hands on them quick enough,” Roberts said. “And that growth happened all across the country. Almost everyone that’s a major bicycle company has a fat bike now. And some of them have multiple models.”

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Coastal Planning
9:45 am
Sat January 24, 2015

Battle With The Sea: Rhode Island Develops State-of-the-Art Planning Tools

The head of the EPA Northeast Region, Curt Spalding, took a guided walking tour of Wickford Village in North Kingstown to learn about a climate change adaptation pilot project there. He also visited Westerly, South Kingstown, and Warwick.
Ambar Espinoza RIPR

Originally published on Sat January 24, 2015 9:31 am

Just this week, the U.S. Senate went on the record that climate change exists. Local and state officials in Rhode Island haven’t been waiting around to take the lead from Washington. They not only know climate change is real, but they’re also planning for its impacts. As part of our Battle With The Sea series, Rhode Island Public Radio’s environmental reporter Ambar Espinoza went on a tour with the Environmental Protection Agency’s northeast director to see how plans are in place.

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New York
9:44 am
Sat January 24, 2015

Canadian Pair Rescued After Frosty Night In Adirondacks

Originally published on Fri January 23, 2015 8:20 pm

Two Canadian hikers lost in the Adirondack High Peaks spent a frigid night in the snowy wilderness before being rescued by rangers.

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Ukraine
8:58 am
Sat January 24, 2015

Ukraine Rebel Leader Claims New Attack On Mariupol

Ukrainian servicemen stand guard on a street near a burning building after a shelling by pro-Russian rebels of a residential sector in Mariupol, eastern Ukraine, on Saturday.
Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Sat January 24, 2015 1:30 pm

Updated at 10:15 a.m. ET

A main leader of Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine reportedly says the separatists have launched an attack on the port city of Mariupol, where rocket fire killed at least 15 people in an open-air market and residential area.

"Today an offensive was launched on Mariupol. This will be the best possible monument to all our dead," Alexander Zakharchenko was quoted as saying by Russia's RIA news agency.

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Local Brewers
4:40 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

New England Brewing Company Decides to Rename Gandhi-Bot Beer

New England Brewing Co. has announced it will rename it's popular IPA, Ghandi-Bot.
New England Brewing Co.

A Connecticut brewery says it will no longer use the name and likeness of Mohandas Gandhi on one of its beers following complaints that the marketing was offensive.

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Voicemail Project
3:06 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

The WNPR Voicemail Project: Teens On the Edge

chiesADIbeinasco Creative Commons

WNPR has an experimental radio project and we want you to get involved. The idea is simple: we provide a theme; you call our hotline and tell a story.

The theme: What's so hard about being a teen?

On Friday, January 30, WNPR's Where We Live will talk about the challenges of being a teenager.

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Election 2015
1:46 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

In Hartford, Griebel Considers City Council Run

Oz Griebel in a WNPR file photo.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

Oz Griebel runs the MetroHartford Alliance and ran for governor in 2010. Now, he's considering a run for Hartford's city council. 

"I am considering a run, but considering is the operative word," Griebel said.

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Mental Health
12:09 pm
Fri January 23, 2015

Early Intervention Program Offers Hope for New Haven Area Youths With Psychosis

Alberto Bocchetta, Giorgio Tamburini, Pina Cavolina, Alessandra Serra, Andrea Loviselli and Mario Piga Wikimedia Commons

Yale University and the state are now offering a new treatment to young people living in the New Haven area who are experiencing psychotic symptoms. The treatment is also the subject of a soon-to-be-released study.

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U.S.-Cuba Relations
11:57 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Rep. Rosa DeLauro Calls for End to Program Enticing Cuban Doctors to Defect

A Cuban doctor administers a vaccination to a woman at a camp for displaced Haitians in Port-au-Prince in 2010.
Sophia Paris United Nations

As U.S. and Cuba officials wrap up their first high-level talks in decades, Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro is leading a call for an end to the Cuban Medical Professional Parole Program.

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Climate Change
10:06 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Senate Says Climate Change Real, But Not Really Our Fault

Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., was the only senator to vote against an amendment calling climate change "real and not a hoax."
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Fri January 23, 2015 2:20 pm

Breathtakingly broad as its jurisdiction may be, the U.S. Senate does not usually vote on the validity of scientific theories.

This week, it did. And science won. The Senate voted that climate change is real, and not a hoax. The vote was 98-1.

The vote was about an amendment to the bill approving the Keystone XL pipeline. The near-unanimity of the climate change judgment was notable, because so many senators have cast doubt on ideas of "global warming."

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Injury
9:24 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Former WWE Fighters Suing Over Alleged Brain Damage

WWE fighter Bray Wyatt, "The Eater Of Worlds," jumps on fighter "Dean Ambrose."
Courtesy of WWE

Originally published on Fri January 23, 2015 7:12 pm

Updated at 8:30 a.m. ET on Jan. 23.

Two former World Wrestling Entertainment fighters are suing the company, alleging that it ignored signs of brain damage and injuries.

The lawsuit, dated Jan. 16, was filed by Vito "Big Vito" LoGrasso and Evan Singleton, who wrestled under the name "Adam Mercer."

The suit alleges that LoGrasso has sustained serious neurological damage as a result of wrestling. He says he has headaches, memory loss, depression and hearing impairment. Singleton also says he has tremors, convulsions and migraines.

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Health
8:56 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Connecticut Agency to Hand Out Free Water Testing Kits

Peg Creative Commons

Connecticut's Department of Public Health is providing free private well testing for a limited number of homeowners.

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Inclusive Playgrounds
7:55 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Connecticut Gets Its First "Bankshot" Basketball Court for All Abilities

A Bankshot court in Huntley Park, IL.
Bankshot

A group of West Hartford residents is working to renovate Jonathan's Dream, a public playground for children of all abilities. Recent funding makes it possible for them to bring a set of unusual basketball hoops to the playground, called Bankshot, aimed at all ages and abilities.

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Middle East
7:40 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Saudi King Abdullah, Who Laid Foundation For Reform, Dies

Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud is seen in September 2011.
Ahmed Abdelrahman AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 23, 2015 12:46 pm

King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud of Saudi Arabia has died. He was 90 and had been hospitalized for a lung infection.

Abdullah was born before Saudi Arabia was even a country. It was the early 1920s, and his father, Abdul Aziz ibn Saud, set out to conquer the tribes of the Arabian Peninsula. In one famous battle, ibn Saud surrounded the capital of a rival tribe.

"Famously, instead of executing everybody, he invited them to be his guests," says Robert Lacey, author of two books on Saudi Arabia.

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Global Metro Monitor
2:10 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Connecticut Cities Retain Legacy Wealth, But Fail to Grow

Corporate headquarters help to make Hartford the fourth-richest city in the world.
Cliff Creative Commons

Connecticut’s urban areas remain among of the most economically productive areas in the world, even while they struggle to recover from the great recession. In fact a new study from the Brookings Institution pegs Hartford as having the second highest economic output in the country, and the fourth highest in the world.

The Global Metro Monitor takes the economic temperature of 300 major cities around the world. Greater Hartford lies fourth in the world in terms of gross domestic product per capita, a measure of how much economic value is produced compared to the size of a metro area, including corporate profits as well as personal incomes. Only Zurich, Oslo and San Jose rank higher. Bridgeport, whose metro area include Fairfield County, lies eighth.

But another story is told by the most recent data on recovery from 2014. 

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Super Bowl
1:40 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Broadcaster Al Michaels Gets Ready To Provide 'Lyrics' For The Super Bowl

Al Michaels will announce the Super Bowl game between the Seattle Seahawks and the New England Patriots on Feb. 1.
Doug Pensinger Getty Images

Originally published on Thu January 22, 2015 3:28 pm

When the Seattle Seahawks and New England Patriots meet in the 2015 Super Bowl on Feb. 1, the broadcast booth will be anchored by a man who has done the play-by-play for eight previous Super Bowls. Al Michaels, the announcer for NBC's Sunday Night Football, knows how to put emotion into his broadcasts.

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Hospital Deal
1:25 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Connecticut, Tenet Agree to Renew Talks for Hospital Deal

Credit vichie81/iStock / Thinkstock

Tenet Healthcare said it is open to resuming talks with the state of Connecticut over its failed deal to buy five hospitals. The company pulls no punches in its response to Governor Dannel Malloy’s invitation.

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