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News
11:36 am
Wed September 12, 2012

New CT Centers Training Future Manufacturing Workers

Harriet Jones

Three new training centers opened this fall at Connecticut’s community colleges, aimed at turning out hundreds of workers ready to take jobs in advanced manufacturing. WNPR’s Harriet Jones reports.

These students at Housatonic Community College in Bridgeport are learning the theory behind computer numerical control, or CNC machining. Christopher Heun says he chose this manufacturing certificate course because he enjoys working with his hands.

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News
8:13 am
Wed September 12, 2012

Turning to Native Bees as Pollinators Amid Honeybee Die-Off

Roo72 (Wikimedia Commons)

 

Since 2006, much of the West has experienced unusually sharp declines in honeybee numbers, so much so that the unprecedented decline was given a name: Colony Collapse Disorder, a phenomenon where worker bees seem to simply vanish. While scientists ponder the reasons for the collapse of honeybees, fruit farmers face extra pressure to pollinate their crops. Now, a handful of researchers in the Northeast are proposing that fruit growers in Maine, New York, Massachusetts, and Connecticut might look to the lesser-known members of the bee family to take up the slack. 

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News
2:03 pm
Tue September 11, 2012

Report: Family Health Insurance Costs Go Up Modestly

 

A new national study shows that healthcare premiums went up modestly nationwide this year.  But as WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, the rise in premiums still outpaces increases in both inflation and wages.

 

The study was conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Health Research and Educational Trust.  It shows that annual premiums for employer-sponsored family health coverage reached nearly $16,000 this year -- up four percent over last year.  Workers pay on average about a quarter of that.

 

Drew Altman is Kaiser's president.  

 

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News
3:56 pm
Mon September 10, 2012

Rovella Is Hartford's New Chief

 

After a lengthy delay, the city of Hartford finally has a new police chief. WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports. 

 

James Rovella is the city's new permanent chief and has a four-year contract that pays $156,700 a year. Mayor Pedro Segarra selected him after a nationwide candidate search failed to turn up satisfactory outside candidates.  Rovella was serving as acting chief. By his own choice, Rovella wasn't part of that search process, and that rubbed some on the city council the wrong way.  So it subjected Rovella to a confirmation hearing and questions of its own.

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News
8:31 am
Sun September 9, 2012

Real Life Survival Guide Episode 58

Cindy Papish Gerber

Having just arranged for the payment of a rather large college tuition bill ("arranged" meaning we borrowed most of it), the topic of "buying stuff" has begun to occupy a lot of my attention. Not only do I question the usefulness/necessity of some of my past purchases, I wanted to get an idea of what criteria others use when making decisions about buying goods and services.

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News
3:16 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

At Front Street, Movies Soon And More Good News To Come

Jeff Cohen/WNPR

 

Front Street is the retail and entertainment district the state built in the center of Hartford's downtown.  But since it's completion, the space has been empty.  That will soon change.  WNPR's Jeff Cohen checks in with state officials who say a movie theater will soon open, and more tenants are on the way.

 

We're standing at the corner of Columbus Boulevard and Front Street, right across from the Connecticut Convention Center.  A couple of guys in hard hats are tinkering with the big, new signs above the doors.  Jim Abromaitis is looking on.

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News
1:31 pm
Thu September 6, 2012

Irene Recovery in Vermont Focuses on How to Minimize Future Damage

Steve Zind (VPR)

It’s been one year since Hurricane Irene tore up the Eastern Seaboard, finally hitting Connecticut as a Tropical Storm. While the damage and power outages in this state were substantial, the impact was nothing like that in Vermont, where heavy rains flooded creeks and streams, blocking roads for days and washing away buildings across the state. As Steve Zind of Vermont Public Radio reports, the recovery effort is ongoing. But it’s not just about rebuilding…it’s also planning for future storms. 

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News
8:52 pm
Tue September 4, 2012

Moody Dance Pop and Some Heady House

This week on the Needle Drop, we've got new tracks from Ondatropica and the Meridian Brothers. We'll also be trying out the latest releases from Matthew Dear and Four Tet.

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News
2:39 pm
Tue September 4, 2012

Hartford Layoffs Loom

 

The city of Hartford is preparing to lay off at least a dozen people later this month.  As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, Mayor Pedro  Segarra needs to reduce his staff to balance his budget.

 

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News
1:41 pm
Tue September 4, 2012

The Science Behind How Furry Animals Shake To Get Dry

Flickr Creative Commons, Soggydan

Using high-speed video cameras, hoses, and a healthy dose of bravery, David Hu’s lab is studying the science behind how wet animals get dry.

The team sampled everything from mice to dogs and even took a trip to a zoo in Atlanta, where they sprayed down a bear and watched how it dried off. 

 

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News
9:41 am
Tue September 4, 2012

High Hopes Therapeutic Riding

Mark Yaworowski

When Kerry Christianson first rode a horse, she needed people on each side of her to make sure she did not fall. Her posture was poor, and she needed to wear a special brace, so someone could hold her. Now, she is able to sit upright in her saddle, and hold her head steady. This is thanks to High Hopes Theraputic Riding in Old Lyme, Connecticut.

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News
9:05 am
Tue September 4, 2012

Internships to Stem the Brain Drain

Harriet Jones

Internships are a common way for big companies to bring on new talent and to decide on possible future hires. But running an internship program can be financially impossible for many of Connecticut’s small technology companies. WNPR’s Harriet Jones reports on a program that aims to change that.

Strain Measurement in Wallingford is an engineering firm that makes sensors, primarily for medical devices.

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News
1:24 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

Traveling In Style

The Connecticut Historical Society. 1985.202.0a,b.

 Modes of transportation have come a long way. In Colonial times, options included riding a horse or walking; later choices expanded to include the trains and airplanes.  Regardless of the transportation type, how to travel stylishly has been a question for centuries.

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News
4:18 pm
Wed August 29, 2012

City Still Needs Union Concessions To Balance Budget

 

The current budget of the city of Hartford is a tight one, and it includes a million dollars in labor concessions that haven't yet been agreed to.  As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, Mayor Pedro Segarra has offered either furlough days or layoffs.

 

This year's budget for the city of Hartford was one of the toughest in memory, as the mayor had to close a projected $50 million deficit.  To get there, the city approved $1 million in savings from labor unions.  But by the time the budget went into effect in July, those concessions hadn't yet been found.

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News
6:23 pm
Tue August 28, 2012

Dreamy Pop and Snarky Rock

This week on the show, we're trying out new tracks from Flying Lotus, Holy Others, Krule Kid, and more. We're also diving into the latest LPs from Wild Nothing and Parquet Courts.

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News
3:39 pm
Tue August 28, 2012

Poll Gives McMahon Slight Lead Over Murphy, Shows She's Changing Minds

Jeff Cohen/WNPR

 

A Quinnipiac University Poll gives Republican Senate candidate Linda McMahon a slight edge over Democrat Chris Murphy in a race that is still too close to call.  As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, the poll shows that voters like McMahon more now than when she lost the race for senate in 2010.

 

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News
8:39 am
Mon August 27, 2012

Real Life Survival Guide Episode 57

Cindy Papish Gerber

When the calendar switches from August to September, I can't help but think about the various ways I have felt about fall over the years: nervousness and corduroys, preseason soccer, returning to college, and now, getting the kids OUT OF THE HOUSE!

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News
6:00 pm
Fri August 24, 2012

Outdoor Enthusiast: Picture Perfect

CPBN Media Lab: Ross Mortensen

Weir Farm, located in the towns of Wilton and Ridgefield, Connecticut, is the only National Park site in the state and the only site within the National Park Service that is devoted to the history of the American Painting. Three artists called Weir Farm their home, including Julian Alden Weir, Mahonri Young, and Sperry Andrews.

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News
3:02 pm
Fri August 24, 2012

Figures in a Landscape

Marie Kendall, born Marie Hartig in 1854, was a professional photographer at a time when few women practiced the trade. Married to John C. Kendall in 1878, they moved to Norfolk, Connecticut in 1884, where Kendall opened her photographic practice. Known professionally as Mrs. J.C. Kendall, she was a self-taught photographer who recorded Norfolk’s many charms and developments, its people and their relationship to their landscape, and the surrounding environment.

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News
12:17 pm
Fri August 24, 2012

Exhibit Features Costumes From Hartford's West Indian Community

Institute for Community Research.

An exhibit of large-scale Trinidad-style Carnival costumes opened in Hartford this week. The brightly colored pieces were made by local teens as part of a summer jobs program.

"We’re looking at the Queen costume, which is taking up the major portion of our gallery."

Lynne Williamson is standing beside a huge green and gold costume that reaches about 12 feet into the air. She’s director of the Connecticut Cultural Heritage Arts Program at the Institute for Community Research.

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News
12:20 pm
Thu August 23, 2012

Outdoor Enthusiast: Life's Better on the Water!

Kayley Sisco

DANBURY – The CPBN Media Lab traveled to Candlewood Lake to spend a day on the water with Mark Chanski, a DEEP officer and tour guide for this segment of Outdoor Enthusiast.  After a quick lesson on lifejackets and water safety, the team headed out to explore Connecticut’s largest lake.

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News
5:26 pm
Wed August 22, 2012

Biggest Outbreak of West Nile Virus Since 1999

Photo Courtesy of Flickr CC by Dr Relling

There's been a dramatic increase of West Nile Virus cases nationwide in just one week. The number of people who tested positive has increased to more than 1100. The federal Centers for Disease Control says its the largest outbreak ever seen in the country with at least forty-one deaths.

Ted Andreadis is the chief medical entomologist at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station.  Speaking on WNPR's Where We Live, he says there have been two human cases of West Nile Virus so far in the state.

 

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News
5:10 pm
Wed August 22, 2012

Sling On: Scientist Sees Future In Space Tethers

Wikimedia Commons

Robert Hoyt dreams that one day the International Space Station (ISS) won’t need fuel to stay in orbit.

“When you consider that launching one kilogram into orbit costs about $20,000 and that the [International Space] Station needs something on the order of ten tons of propellant per year, that can add up to hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars over the lifetime of the station,” Mr. Hoyt said.

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News
3:54 pm
Mon August 20, 2012

MDC's Clean Water Project

J Holt

The impact the Clean Water Project has had on Hartford traffic is well known to area residents and commuters. Less well known are its affects on small businesses. The MDC is working to improve both issues, but satisfying all stakeholders has proven to be difficult. WNPR’s J Holt has the story. 

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News
9:07 am
Sun August 19, 2012

Real Life Survival Guide Episode 56

Cindy Papish Gerber

The goal of the Real Life Survival Guide is to explore common mistakes by sharing advice and expertise, and this week I decided to to focus on the summer ritual known as “the vacation”.

For this week's conversation, producer Cindy Gerber and I invited Sarah Kyrcz, who’s just back from Martha’s Vineyard, daddy and serial entrepreneur Ryan Duques, broadcaster and devoted single parent Matt Scott, and travel writers Eric Lehman and Kelly Monaghan.

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News
3:25 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Little Nutmeggers

During the Colonial Era, children were seen as adults in the making whose clothing and actions mirrored those of their parents.  Towards the beginning of the 1800s, a new understanding of children emerged, and childhood was seen as an important stage of development.  Children were recognized as different from adults, finally giving them the freedom to just be kids.

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News
3:16 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Council Approves Street Corner For Giles

 

The Hartford City Council has approved the naming of a city corner after Abe Giles -- a city politician who died last year.  As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, Giles is a man remembered for his years in politics -- and for the corruption scandal that brought down a city mayor.

 

Giles was a once a state representative from the city's North End, perhaps its poorest neighborhood.  And to hear him tell it, his career in politics was all about helping people.  

 

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News
2:34 pm
Thu August 16, 2012

Home Field Advantage?

Media Lab photograph and Wikimedia Creative Commons image

The CPBN Media Lab has taken an interest in this year’s political campaigns. Today, we looked at the primary results, and looked for different trends. Linda McMahon won the statewide election with 73% of the vote, but how did she fare in her hometown of Greenwich? Did Chris Shays get enough support from his neighbors to win in Bridgeport?

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News
10:19 am
Thu August 16, 2012

Mystic Seaport Workers Ready For Union Vote

Harriet Jones

Workers at Mystic Seaport take to polls Friday to vote on whether to form a union. As WNPR’s Harriet Jones reports, it’s the latest stage in what has become a contentious labor relations saga for the famous museum.

Working at Mystic Seaport is about as far as you can get from the traditional 9 to 5.

“I do blacksmithing, sailmaking, coopering, sail handling, and then talk about the historical relevance of all the artifacts and exhibits around the Seaport.”

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News
7:51 am
Thu August 16, 2012

Real Life Survival Guide Episode 55

Cindy Papish Gerber

This week we gathered at The Rib House in East Haven Connecticut, to brainstorm ideas for the chapter on “working”, and in keeping with my self-congratulatory nature, I'm proud to report that I was able to feature several musical interludes in the episode, none of which is a far-too-obvious choice by Huey Lewis and the News.

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