WNPR

Jeff Cohen

Reporter

Jeff Cohen is a proud New Orleans native who now calls New England home. Or at least his second home.

He started in newspapers in 2001 and joined WNPR in 2010, where he is a reporter and an occasional fill-in host for All Things Considered.

In addition to covering state and Hartford city politics, Jeff covered the December 2012 Newtown shootings and the stories that followed.  Much of that work was featured on NPR.  Also in 2012, Jeff was selected by NPR and Kaiser Health News for their joint Health Care In The States project. That work resulted in several national stories, including ones on the Affordable Care Act and medical education.

Jeff was also selected by the Tow Foundation and the John Jay College of Criminal Justice as a fellow in their 2012 juvenile justice reporting project.

Before working at WNPR, Jeff worked as the city reporter for The Hartford Courant.  While at the Courant, he won a National Headliner Award for a Northeast Magazine story about the ostracized widow of the state's first casualty in Iraq; wrote about his post-Katrina, flooded out home in New Orleans; and was part of a team of reporters that broke the stories of alleged corruption at Hartford City Hall that led to the arrest of former Mayor Eddie A. Perez. 

He also worked at the Meriden Record-Journal and as a freelancer for The New York Times.

Jeff lives in Middletown with his wife, cats, and two trouble-making kids. Thanks to the kids, he's now writing children's books. The first, Eva and Sadie and the Worst Haircut Ever!, came out in June 2014.  The second, Eva and Sadie and the Best Classroom Ever!, comes out in June 2015.  He likes to make bread and wine.

Ways to Connect

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

President Donald Trump’s budget proposal plans to zero out funding for something called Community Development Block Grants -- money that goes from the federal government to states and municipalities to use as they see fit.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The city of Hartford is in the midst of another search for a school superintendent and it’s down to two finalists. But Mayor Luke Bronin recently floated the idea of another person at the last minute, and the move concerned at least one board member. 

Michelle Lee flickr.com/photos/michellerlee/7610741336 / Creative Commons

The Connecticut General Assembly is considering a proposal that would provide for paid family medical leave, and state Senate leaders from both parties are apparently working on compromise language. 

DavidsonScott15 / Creative Commons

The City of Hartford's police department is short on officers.  As one way to try and fix the problem,  the department is now opening a two-week application process just for city residents. 

Jackie Harris / WNPR

State lawmakers held a public hearing Thursday on a series of bills to benefit workers in Connecticut. One effort would increase the minimum wage to $15.00 an hour by 2022, while another would mandate paid family leave. 

White House / Creative Commons

At a briefing with reporters Thursday morning, Governor Dannel Malloy was asked what he thought about the tension between Republican President Donald Trump, Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal, and the federal judiciary. Instead of tackling the issue, Malloy took on the president.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Governor Dannel Malloy has included $125 million in his capital budget as part of an effort to remake the XL Center in downtown Hartford. The state says this is half of what is needed to bring the stadium up to date, but the plan could face Republican opposition. 

Mark Goebel / Creative Commons

The University of Hartford is investigating an email sent to some campus accounts referencing white supremacy Saturday night, and its president is denouncing the missive. 

No one knows what will happen to the Affordable Care Act, or to coverage for the roughly 300,000 Connecticut residents insured under the program. But the state office in charge of the ACA is still making plans for the future – hoping to make the private marketplace more attractive for insurers.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

The city of Hartford had a nearly 55 percent decrease in murders last year from the year before. But the city also saw a two percent increase in the number of non-fatal shootings in 2016 -- and that worries Police Chief James Rovella. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Months after the Connecticut Supreme Court ordered two new criminal trials in the corruption cases of former Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez, Perez’s attorney is now seeking a dismissal. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Westbrook Village and Bowles Park are two old, falling-down public housing developments in the city of Hartford. For over a decade, there have been efforts to tear them down and build something new on their almost 130 acres near the West Hartford line. There’s about to be some movement. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

A legal fight heated up last summer between state marshals and the Hartford Parking Authority. The question was whether the marshals could, by law, park their cars illegally while doing their jobs. That fight wound up in state court and the marshals lost. 

Connecticut Regional Development Authority

Officials in charge of the state’s XL Center in Hartford have approved a $250 million transformation of the building. But whether it happens and how to pay for it now falls to lawmakers and the governor. 

Centerplan Companies

Two years ago, the city of Hartford used eminent domain to take private land from a developer to be used for part of its baseball stadium development project. For that land, the city paid $1.98 million. But now, a state court judge has ruled that the figure wasn’t nearly enough. 

Sandy Hook Ride on Washington

The Connecticut Supreme Court will hear an appeal in a case brought by Newtown families against gun maker Remington Arms. The families are arguing that the manufacturer shouldn't have marketed and sold military-style weapons to civilians.

Digital Vision / Thinkstock

Concerned by a spike in stolen guns in the city of Hartford, police are reaching out to legal gun owners in the capital city and asking them to take better care of their weapons.

Back9Network

It was just about a year ago that the partly state-funded, golf television station the Back9Network filed for bankruptcy. Since then, it has re-emerged as a smaller enterprise -- this time not as a lifestyle and entertainment network, but as a mobile golf app.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

The state’s chief medical examiner told lawmakers Friday that his budgetary shortfall will cost his office its national accreditation and threatens its performance. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

No one wants the city of Hartford to declare bankruptcy. Still, it’s an option that -- given the depth of the capital city’s financial distress -- is on the table. But should the city eventually decide think bankruptcy is the only viable option, it would first have to get the governor’s consent. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

There's been a lot of talk about rigged elections, and state officials have dismissed it. But while Connecticut’s recent Election Day problems haven’t been about corruption, they have been about incompetence. 

Mara Lavitt / WNPR

A Facebook notification on Monday reminding people to register to vote is likely having a real effect. The state said it brought in 15,000 newly registered voters on that day alone. 

UW Health / Creative Commons

The state is looking for a transportation company to get low-income Medicaid patients to their medical appointments. This comes after legislators overrode a veto of a bill by Governor Dannel Malloy.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Retired major league baseball player and Hartford resident Doug Glanville has been appointed to the state panel that sets standards for police officers. 

The Hartford police officer who allegedly kicked a handcuffed suspect in the head said he did so in order to get the suspect to lay flat on the ground. The officer said he lacked the latex gloves he needed to force the suspect down with his hands, so he used his foot, instead, according to a newly-released police report

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