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Mon January 6, 2014
Wind Chill Advisory in Effect; New Public Safety Commissioner Named
A wind chill advisory is in effect from midnight on Monday until 6:00 pm on Tuesday. Strong winds will combine to create low wind chills. Frostbite and hypothermia are a concern as temperatures drop. Precautions should be taken if you are heading outdoors. Wearing gloves and a hat and covering all exposed skin is recommended. Shelters are reaching out to the homeless in advance of dangerously cold temperatures expected overnight and Tuesday.
New State Public Safety Commissioner Named
Governor Dannel Malloy announced on Monday that Dr. Dora Schriro will become the head of emergency services and public protection. Dr. Schriro has served in Washington, D.C., and has worked closely on the country's homeland security efforts. Dr. Schriro will succeed Reuben Bradford as commissioner. Bradford announced last month that he is planning to retire on February 1.
Federal Funding for Newtown Recovery
The U.S. Department of Education is giving Newtown’s public schools another $1.9 million to help with recovery efforts after the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012. The funds will go toward more support for recovery efforts. The grant comes from the Department’s Project School Emergency Response to Violence program, which provides grants to schools that have experienced a significant traumatic event and need resources to respond, recover and re-establish safe environments for students.
Sikorsky to Pay Damages to Canadian Government
Sikorsky is set to pay damages to the Canadian government over a delay in fulfilling a helicopter order. But Canada said it plans to continue with the contract despite the difficulties. Canada ordered an independent review of its Maritime Helicopter Project, and came close to scrapping the whole deal. The idea was to replace a fleet of Sea King craft with Cyclone Maritime copters built by Sikorsky. The Stratford-based aerospace company missed the 2013 deadline to fulfill the $4.7 billion contract for 28 aircraft. In a decision announced late last week, the Canadian government said it would proceed with the stalled project, but it will require the company to pay $88.6 million in damages. It also wants to see a no-cost upgrade in the final product.
Blumenthal and Harp Call for Extension of Federal Commuter Tax Benefit
State leaders are calling for Congress to extend a federal commuter tax benefit that would reduce the cost of commuting for thousands of Connecticut residents. As of January 1, the amount of money commuters are allowed to set aside to pay for their public transportation costs decreased by more than $100.00. U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal said in a statement that commuters in recent months have been expressing to him how useful and important this benefit is to them on a daily basis. Blumenthal is a co-sponsor of the Commuter Benefits Equity Act, which would extend the Commuter Mass-Transit benefit through 2014. Blumenthal and New Haven mayor Toni Harp held a news conference on Monday with rail and environmental advocates to discuss how the expiration of the commuter mass transit benefit affects state residents. The benefit is among a package of 55 popular tax breaks that Congress let expire last week.