The scope of the federal grand jury investigation involving the relationship between Hartford's city treasurer and an insurance broker continues to grow, as the state has confirmed that federal prosecutors served a subpoena on two of its departments.
Chief judges in the region, including Connecticut’s Chief Judge Janet Hall, say they oppose plans to convert a federal prison in Danbury into a men’s facility. The facility is the only federal prison in the northeast for women.
Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 12:27 pm
Voters in Massachusetts overwhelmingly approved legalizing medical marijuana in 2012. But many local communities are putting temporary bans in place as the deadline for final applications for state licensed marijuana treatment centers approaches.
Our weekly news roundtable The Wheelhouse has a lot on the table, including a Hartford scandal that has turned into yet another dispute over freedom of information. Also, there were hearings earlier this week on the Metro-North outages. So who's to blame, and who's going to pay? We'll also check in with someone who writes about Catholicism. When the new Archbishop in Hartford was announced, he said it was "not a happy day" in the city.
Parents arrive to pick up their children from a school in Montgomery, Ala. After a tough immigration law was enacted in 2011, Hispanic students began to disappear from classrooms in the state's public schools.
Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 6:33 pm
Opponents of Alabama's strict immigration law are declaring victory Tuesday, as the state agreed not to pursue key provisions of a measure critics had called an endorsement of racial profiling. Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the state's appeal of a federal court's ruling that gutted the law.
Federal prosecutors served a subpoena on Hartford City Hall last week, and attorneys for Mayor Pedro Segarra are refusing to release it to the public. But a recent case suggests that the city may be violating the state's Freedom of Information laws.
Yale Law School’s Visual Law Project has created a film about Northern Correctional Institution in Somers, Connecticut. The documentary film sheds light on the hidden world of supermax prisons, where inmates may be held in solitary confinement for weeks, months, and even years at a time. The film is called "The Worst of the Worst."
A connection between violence and nightclub districts in New Haven has Mayor John DeStefano concerned. He wants to tighten some restrictions on nightclubs after a weekend homicide, and Governor Dannel Malloy is backing him up. Also, The Wheelhouse Digest wants to know from you: do you think we can work our way through local problems in our towns and cities without knowing personally the right person to do the job? Do we sometimes hide behind bureaucracy, or can it be a good shield? That and more below.
Senator Richard Blumenthal is chairing a hearing in Bridgeport on the recent Metro-North power outage. The hearing is examining the causes of the outage, how to prevent such failures from reoccurring, and the economic impact of such a major service disruption. It's hearing of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation subcommittee on Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Infrastructure, Safety and Security.
Connecticut might have to prepare for an even larger role in marijuana regulation, if there's a federal decriminalization of the drug. The state itself is in the midst of implementing a law that allows for the production and dispensing of marijuana for medical purposes.
Full disclosure: I was in my high school's Model United Nations club for two years, representing the countries of Bosnia-Herzegovina and Sudan.
There's something innately human about wanting to play pretend. It's one reason why people read, watch movies, and play videogames. At its core, that's what Model U.N. is: pretend. When you get a group of several hundred, highly passionate high school students (dare I say geeks?), blood boils, friendships are broken, and sanctions are imposed. But gosh darn it...it's fun.
Superior Court Judge Julia Auriemma ruled to reinstate Middletown Realistic Balance Party candidates Stephen Devoto and Steven Smith to the ballot on Monday, October 21, two weeks before Election Day. Devoto and Smith, candidates for Middletown's Planning and Zoning Commission, had been removed from the ballot by Middletown Town Clerk Linda Bettencourt in September for failing to comply with an election law unfamiliar to several municipalities around Connecticut.
Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra confirmed that federal agents have served a subpoena on city hall. Segarra said he hasn't read the subpoena and doesn't know what it's for. "I have had a conversation with our legal department," he said. "They informed me that a subpoena was received in connection with a federal investigation. I have not read the subpoena, so I'm not familiar with what the subpoena states, or what it is requesting."
Westfield State University Trustees begin a meeting on Oct.16,2013 to address the status of University President Evan Dobelle. Seated ( l to r) chairman John Flynn, board attorney James Cox, Dobelle, trustee Kevin Queenin
Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 12:21 pm
The leadership controversy at Westfield State University has deepened with the filing of a federal court lawsuit. Embattled President Evan Dobelle charges trustees and the state’s top higher education official have defamed him.
In our continuing coverage of the missing $670,000 in Hartford insurance premiums, there are at least two main players: city treasurer Adam Cloud, and Earl O'Garro, the CEO of Hybrid Insurance Group. Lots of questions remain unanswered. One is this: What kind of history do the two men have?
The Wright brothers in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
Credit National Air and Space Museum
With Wright Flyer in background, Ohio State Rep. Rick Perales held a press conference on Thursday challenging Connecticut's law that replaces the Wright brothers with Gustave Whitehead as the first in powered flight.
If Connecticut thought a state law acknowledging Bridgeport resident Gustav Whitehead as the first in flight would put the issue of who flew first to rest, Ohio and North Carolina are saying: not so fast. North Carolina Republican State Senator Bill Cook and Ohio Republican State Representative Rick Perales held dual news conferences Thursday reasserting the Wright brothers' legacy as the first to achieve powered flight.
Governor Dannel Malloy made a recent fundraising trip to California on the state Democrats' dime, and now questions are being asked about whether he approached an executive who works for a company that does work for the University of Connecticut. More on that below, and discussion of why Michael Skakel will get a new trial, in The Wheelhouse Digest.
A coalition of Connecticut anti-gun and peace groups gathered in Hartford on Wednesday. The goal of the conference was to come together as a unified voice for peace and safety. The first-of-its-kind conference brought together representatives from 30 anti-gun and peace groups from around the state, just as Newtown is beginning demolition of the Sandy Hook Elementary School.
UConn Philosophy professor Michael Lynch wrote in a recent New York Times opinion piece, that we’re living in a “dangerous political moment.” Not just because of the shutdown of the federal government and the near default on the nation’s debts, but he writes: “The real damage is caused by the idea that that our current democratic form of government should be shuttered.” That a large segment of the population might think government really is a bad idea.
Originally published on Wed October 23, 2013 6:45 pm
The U.S. Navy's first "supercarrier" is being sold for just 1 cent to a ship breaker.
The USS Forrestal, launched in 1954 and decommissioned in 1993, is the first of three conventional (non-nuclear) carriers due to be scrapped in the coming years. The Forrestal is best known for a devastating fire in 1967 that engulfed the ship's flight deck, killing 134 sailors and wounding 161 others.