Heather Brandon

Digital Editor

Heather Brandon is digital editor for WNPR. She lives in Hartford with her husband and three children. Heather previously worked as a producer for Where We LiveThe Colin McEnroe Show, and news broadcasts. She has a master's degree in public policy from Trinity College, and a bachelor's degree in urban studies from Bryn Mawr College. 

Ways To Connect

Stephanie Rivkin / Facebook

State wildlife officials are still on the lookout for a black bear that was videotaped licking the leg of a hiker in Burlington, Connecticut.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The mayoral campaign season is reaching an important milestone next month: primary day. In Hartford, incumbent Mayor Pedro Segarra, who lost the endorsement of city Democrats, will face challenger Luke Bronin. Segarra gathered the necessary signatures to petition onto the primary ballot.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

The state’s transit administrator admitted this week that he used a screen name other than his own to comment on The Hartford Courant website. Governor Dannel Malloy said the official shouldn’t have done it – but said he doesn’t think the state has a social media policy for its employees, either.

Office of Gov. Dannel Malloy

Governor Dannel Malloy is promoting his deputy chief of staff to his administration's top job. The change is official on Monday, September 28.

Michael Raphael / FEMA

The state's unemployment rate has fallen to 5.4 percent, according to the Department of Labor. The department's Bureau of Labor Statistics said Thursday the state added 4,100 jobs in July.

John Phelan / Creative Commons

The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled in favor of a full repeal of the state's death penalty on Thursday.

The decision comes more than three years after a repeal of the death penalty for crimes committed after the law was enacted. It means that eleven people currently on death row in the state will be spared execution.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Interstate fishery managers on the Atlantic coast are signing off on a management plan for a species of crab that is growing in value and volume of catch.

MGM Springfield

Casino developer MGM Resorts International has filed a lawsuit against three top Connecticut officials, including Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy.

State of Connecticut

Governor Dannel Malloy announced on Tuesday the state's plans to invest in its first "road diet" in East Hartford, improving bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure along a major corridor.

Jan-Mallander / Creative Commons

About 100,000 customers lost power in Rhode Island on Tuesday following severe early-morning thunderstorms. In Connecticut, Eversource reported about 5,000 outages as of mid-day.

Connecticut Senate Republicans

Connecticut Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano is calling for the resignation of Joette Katz, Commissioner of the Department of Children and Families. This follows a report revealing urgent safety problems at two state-run juvenile detention facilities.

Alan Grinberg / Creative Commons

Lawmakers in Congress are debating the Student Success Act, which would replace and update the No Child Left Behind law. The Republican House bill passed without the support of Connecticut lawmakers, or any Democrats at all.

Charlie Smart / WNPR

The Hartford Yard Goats unveiled their team logo on Wednesday, featuring a feisty goat chewing on a baseball bat.

The nostalgic colors and lettering refer to Hartford sports history -- the Whalers -- and the old New Haven-Hartford-New York train line logo. A "yard goat" is a term for a type of rail car.

janp013/iStock / Thinkstock

Connecticut lawmakers passed two bills on Monday aimed at reforming the state's criminal justice system. 

orudorumagi11 / Creative Commons

The state legislature left some work to do after the regular session ended, but it did change the way the car tax is applied across the state. 

Speaking on WNPR's Where We Live, panelists broke down the way the state budget would affect the tax and how complex it appears to be.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Connecticut House Speaker Brendan Sharkey called for new leadership at Quinnipiac University this week, citing problems caused by students living in residential neighborhoods.

CT-N

The Connecticut Republican leadership recapped the 2015 legislative session at the State Capitol on Thursday. House Republican Leader Themis Klarides urged the governor to veto the budget if it wasn't the plan he wanted.

CT-N

Governor Dannel Malloy touted accomplishments related to property tax reform and investments in transportation during a press conference on Thursday at the State Capitol, while reporters questioned him repeatedly on his earlier promise not to raise taxes. 

CT-N

State Senate Democrats are recapping the 2015 legislative session during a press conference in Senate President Martin Looney's office.

Michelle Lee / Creative Commons

Connecticut's House of Representatives passed a $40 billion state budget after Democratic leaders worked through the night to secure enough votes.

The bill, which needed 72 votes, was approved Wednesday morning 73 to 70. It now heads to the Senate, which by law must act on the package by midnight when the General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn for the summer.

Photo Phiend / Creative Commons

Rank-and-file Connecticut lawmakers will be briefed Monday on a tentative two-year budget agreement reached between Governor Dannel Malloy and the General Assembly's Democrats early Sunday. 

A vote on the latest, proposed $40 billion fiscal package is expected later on Monday. Listen to WNPR's Where We Live for an update from legislators.

Photo Phiend / Creative Commons

A bill that creates a multi-step process for possibly opening a new tribal casino in Connecticut is heading to the governor, among other bills awaiting action at the Capitol.

Bruce Fingerhood / Creative Commons

The recent derailment of an Amtrak passenger train in Philadelphia has brought attention across the northeast to safety on the rail lines. A computerized system to slow or stop trains automatically, called Positive Train Control, could help avoid accidents like this in the future.

Yusuf Syed

Adnan Syed, who was convicted for murder in 2000, and whose case was the subject of the podcast Serial, was granted a post-conviction hearing in a court order released Monday.

On WNPR's The Colin McEnroe Show, attorney Rabia Chaudry spoke about the development, which came sooner than Syed's legal team expected.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Some conversations about public media, and the role of public radio stations in particular, have been making their way across social media this week. 

Ryan King / WNPR

For decades, the elevated section of highway through Hartford along I-84 has been a major feature of the city's landscape. It's now viewed as a barrier, dividing the city in two. It's also aged out of its usefulness.

This week, the Connecticut DOT is inviting the public to take a look at what it's calling the I-84 Hartford Project. Anyone can drop by the Open Planning Studio at a downtown Hartford church to meet planners and engineers who are looking at alternatives to redesign I-84.

YouTube

Quinnipiac University's president has apologized for jokingly telling students at a party he would buy nearby residential houses, inflaming already sore town-gown relations. 

Office of Dannel Malloy

A non-partisan working group to help find funding options for Connecticut's transportation infrastructure overhaul met for the first time on Tuesday.

Creative Commons

Several governors from New England visited Connecticut on Thursday to talk about regional energy infrastructure challenges. 

Patrick Skahill / WNPR

Governor Dannel Malloy announced on Wednesday the creation of a state council to set goals related to Connecticut's efforts to address climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

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