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News
10:54 am
Thu July 12, 2012

America, We Need To Talk: Take a Vacation

Doug Wheller (Flickr Creative Commons)

Everyone counts down the days to vacation, right? Well not in America...it seems we’d rather keep working.

Yes, despite all the data that time off makes you happier, healthier and MORE productive, a majority of americans - some 57percent had unused vacation time at the end of 2011, and most of them left an average of 11 days on the table.

Meanwhile, profits per-employee are at a 10 year high. What if we just cut into those corporate profits by taking a day we’ve earned here and there?

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News
4:01 pm
Wed July 11, 2012

On The Farmington River, A Dam Comes Down

Jeff Cohen/WNPR

There's a broken down dam on the Farmington River, where anglers and paddlers like to have fun.  But as WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, it won't be there long.

It's called the Spoonville Dam, about a dozen miles up the Farmington from where it meets the Connecticut River. Its original purpose was to create hydro power over a century ago. But then, in 1955, overpowering floods washed out about a quarter of the dam -- leaving huge fragments down river.  And for the past half century, the entire river has funneled through a very narrow, very fast moving breach.  

 

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News
6:04 pm
Tue July 10, 2012

Segarra Names Rovella Police Chief

Jeff Cohen/WNPR

 

After a national search process, Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra has named the city's new police chief.  As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, the mayor decided to stick with a man he already knew.

 

James Rovella has been acting chief of police.  A former city cop and state inspector, Rovella came back to the department initially to run its shooting task force.  The result has been a sharp decline in gun crimes and shooting victims in the city.

 

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News
5:10 pm
Tue July 10, 2012

The Needle Drop: 07-07-12

This week on TND, we've got tracks off the latest releases by H-SIK, Hot Chip, and Dirty Projectors. We'll also be sampling tracks from the new Blur single as well.

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News
1:08 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Transforming The Local News

Jon S Creative Commons

The whole point of the company Journatic is that you’re not supposed to know that they exist.

What do they do? Well, they provide news stories for papers - sometimes written under fake bylines - often “reported” from far flung places. Think that story about West Hartford gas prices had the local touch? Might be someone from California...or the Philippines.

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News
7:13 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Innovation, Trade Summit Comes To CT

Connecticut will be the destination later this month for hundreds of small high tech companies from all over the Eastern United States. They’ll be here for the national Small Business Innovation Research and Global Trade Summit, to be held at Mohegan Sun. WNPR’s Harriet Jones reports.

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News
11:47 pm
Sun July 8, 2012

Connecticut Welcomes OpSail

Harriet Jones

The tall ships of OpSail will take their leave of New London this morning after a weekend of celebration. WNPR’s Harriet Jones reports.

The Coast Guard Barque Eagle, a familiar sight on the Thames River, lead the parade of sail into New London Saturday as 23 ships berthed at the final port of call for OpSail. Joanne Broat is the medical officer and the cook aboard the Amistad.

“It’s good, it’s good to be back here – it’s been 2000, so 12 years – everybody’s happy.”

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News
2:16 pm
Sat July 7, 2012

The Greatest Showman on Earth

Born in Bethel, CT in 1810, Phineas Taylor Barnum was one of history’s most colorful characters. At the age of 21, he purchased a printing press and soon learned to use sensational advertising to capture the public’s attention and create what we today would call “buzz”. Barnum moved to New York City in 1834 and in 1841 opened Barnum’s American Museum, which featured over 500,000 artifacts, curiosities, and human attractions, including the Feejee Mermaid, Chang and Eng the “Siamese Twins”, and Sara Swan the “Tallest Girl in the World”.

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News
2:55 pm
Fri July 6, 2012

As Segarra Picks Police Chief, Some Question The Process

 

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra says that a months-long public process has produced three finalists for police chief.  But as WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, Segarra also says he may still choose someone else.

 

The city has an acting police chief.  His name is James Rovella.  And his name isn't on the list of three finalists for the permanent police chief job.  Why?

 

"He's not a candidate, because he didn't actually apply."

 

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News
8:42 am
Fri July 6, 2012

New London Preps For OpSail

Harriet Jones

The tall ships sail into New London this weekend for OpSail – the first time in 12 years that Connecticut has hosted the event. WNPR’s Harriet Jones visited the city to see how it’s getting ready.

Coming into New London on Eugene O’Neill Drive, you might glance across one of the city’s car parks and notice two painters hard at work on an enormous mural. Ten feet up in the air on a hydraulic platform. 

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News
3:56 pm
Thu July 5, 2012

Internal Investigation Clears Donovan

Jeff Cohen/WNPR

 

An internal investigation into allegations of wrongdoing in the Democratic congressional campaign of Chris Donovan has cleared the state house speaker. WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports.

 

The fundraising scandal involving Donovan began when his now former finance director was arrested  and charged with conspiracy -- he allegedly tried to hide the source of campaign donations.  Donovan has said he had no knowledge of the impropriety -- but he hired former U.S. Attorney Stan Twardy to do an internal investigation.

 

And here's what Twardy found.

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News
12:12 pm
Thu July 5, 2012

Effects of Sprawl on Water

fishhawk (Flickr Creative Commons)

Lee Epstein, in a recent piece for the Atlantic Cities blog, wrote that healthy watersheds and sustainable in-town development are directly linked: “what happens on the land affects the water downstream” across a wide area.

He says sprawling development damages water quality for the whole region. When we spread out our town development, rather than keeping it in areas that are already developed, there’s more waste and less vegetation to absorb it.

Epstein is with the Lands Program of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. 

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News
11:55 am
Thu July 5, 2012

Lincoln's Hundred Days

Kevin Burkett (Flickr Creative Commons)

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News
11:39 am
Thu July 5, 2012

The Always Important Swing Vote

Ho John Lee (Flickr Creative Commons)

We know they’re the biggest voter block in Connecticut...and we know they’ll decide this year’s presidential election...

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News
2:56 pm
Tue July 3, 2012

Harsh Garage Rock and Unapologetic Art Rap

This week on the Needle Drop, we're sampling new albums from Liars, Bobby Womack, Open Mike Eagle, and Ty Segall. Covering all the bases from quirky art rap to tough-as-nails garage rock.

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News
11:08 am
Tue July 3, 2012

Youth Violence

Chion Wolf

When violence strikes a city – as Hartford was struck last month in a weekend of shootings that left two dead and eight wounded  – you have to ask why, and you have to ask how can we prevent this from happening again?

Especially when the violence involves young people, a city stops and ponders. One of the dead was a 16-year old Windsor High student, shot while attending a Sweet Sixteen birthday party.

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News
10:48 am
Mon July 2, 2012

Kids in Prison: Raising the Age

vectorportal, creative commons

What's an adult?  And, when it comes to crime, should a teenager be treated like one?

Did you know that, up until 2010, 16-year-olds charged with most crimes in Connecticut were handled in the adult judicial system?  And did you know that until yesterday, the same could be said for 17-year-olds? The changes were at the heart of what was called the "raise the age" effort -- and today we'll talk to lawmakers an legal experts about how the new law has played out.

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News
9:54 pm
Sat June 30, 2012

Beating the Downturn Together

The economic downturn has hit many of the small towns in Connecticut ’s Northwest corner hard.   As WNPR’s Lori Ann Brass reports, these “ Main Street ” business districts think they have a much better chance of surviving the economic downturn if they work together.  

 

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News
3:27 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

AN EXCEPTIONALLY DEADLY WAR

The American Civil War was an exceptionally deadly war that lasted longer than either side anticipated.  A particularly fatal set of battles was the Seven Days Battles at the start of the war, which set the tone for things to come. The Seven Days Battles lasted from June 25 to July 1, 1862 and were the culmination of Major General George B. McClellan’s Peninsula Campaign, an unsuccessful attempt to capture the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia.   

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News
11:37 am
Fri June 29, 2012

Congressional Delegation Reacts To SCOTUS Ruling

Marty Stone (Flickr Creative Commons)

The Supreme Court’s validation of the health care law did nothing to end the bitter debate in Congress over the Affordable Care Act. In fact, the decision may have hardened positions.

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News
3:48 pm
Thu June 28, 2012

Supreme Court Says Healthcare Law Is Consitutional. So, Now What?

 

Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the controversial healthcare overhaul law, it's up to the states to implement it.  WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports.

 

So, the Supreme Court has ruled -- and come 2014, everybody will have to get healthcare coverage or pay a tax.

 

But that's just the beginning.  What kind of coverage will insurers provide?  How extensive will it be?  How much will it cost?  And who will get a government subsidy to help pay for it?

 

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News
12:34 pm
Thu June 28, 2012

Grump. C. Mudgeon

This is the winner in Secretary of the State Denise Merrill’s video contest that sought to answer the question “why should I vote?” 

The winners are a group of students from Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, who worked on the project as part of the CPBN (Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network) Media Lab.  The winning video will air as a public service announcement this fall for the more than 500,000 local customers who subscribe to Comcast Cable, Inc. The members of the winning group include: Michael DiChello; Amy Roy; Brian Johnson and Nils Toledo Jr.

News
10:05 am
Thu June 28, 2012

Cut to Pest Control Program Leaves Farms Vulnerable This Summer

Jan Ellen Spiegel

As Connecticut’s growing season heads towards its peak, farmers are facing greater risks from more pests and diseases than they’ve seen in recent years. The situation could turn even worse because, as WNPR's Jan Ellen Spiegel reports, a popular pest management program was cut at the last minute. And that means there will be fewer eyes on the fields, just when they may be needed most.

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News
10:16 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Cultural Competency for Kids

basheertome, creative commons

Students are learning math and reading, but do they know how to get along with others around the world?

It’s called “cultural competence” - a facility with different languages, an understanding of climate and geography, and familiarity with global financial markets. And according to the Connecticut World Affairs Council, it’s what our students lack.  A “global context.”

Those who share this view say covering science, technology, engineering, and math - is great, but it isn’t enough.

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News
9:50 am
Wed June 27, 2012

Can Small Be Revolutionary Too?

Sarah Miner

 Tourism in Connecticut seems to revolve around a few big names. The Seaport, the Aquarium, and the casinos. These are prominently featured in the state’s new marketing campaign. But the industry is also sustained by hundreds of small businesses – inns, restaurants and small attractions. They’re wondering if they’ll get a fair shake in this new focus on state marketing. WNPR’s Sarah Miner reports.

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News
8:17 pm
Tue June 26, 2012

Fiona's Back and Swedish Synth Pop

This week on the Needle Drop, we're sampling tracks from the latest releases from Swedish synth pop songstress iamamiwhoami, and piano rock warrior Fiona Apple.

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News
3:50 pm
Tue June 26, 2012

Arts and Ideas: Scottish Theater, Australian Acrobats, Music for Change

Chion Wolf

Every summer, a world of arts and ideas descends on New Haven Connecticut - and we're here to take a look and a listen.

Today, we're broadcasting live from The Study at Yale - a beautiful, modern hotel, right in the heart of the city on Chapel Street.  We're only a block from a few of Yale's terrific art galleries. But honestly, during the Festival of Arts and Ideas, art is everywhere.  

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News
3:13 pm
Mon June 25, 2012

Helping to Heal with Songbirds

Wesleyan University

 

A new finding by a Wesleyan University professor may hold promise for people suffering Neurological Disorders like Alzheimer's and Epilepsy. WNPR's Ray Hardman speaks to Dr. John Kirn, Professor of Biology and Chair of the Neuroscience and Behavior Program at Wesleyan University whose work focuses on the brain of a small songbird.

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News
2:23 pm
Mon June 25, 2012

Steve Blass On Living The Pirate Life

Design by James Slate and Andy Hansen. Photo from AP Images.

Most major league players have a lot of stories to tell. But Steve Blass might have more than most. He went from a skinny prospect in the tiny Connecticut town of Falls Village to become the star pitcher on a World Series team, where he befriended a baseball icon.

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News
2:08 pm
Mon June 25, 2012

Title IX

Chion Wolf

Title IX is 40 years old this week...and slowly over that time, it’s meant a big boost in Women’s athletics.

Just to give you some idea - there are nearly 10 times as many high school girls playing organized sports today as there were the year the law went into effect. At the college level, nearly half of the athletic scholarships go to female athletes.

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