A story of a "loophole" lawyer, a dream of a donut shop in every section of town, and how the public can fight back

Saturday, February 24, 2007
Time: 6:47 PM

Okay people, it's time to fight back.

Everyone knows about GOD-AWFUL, idiotic idea to place a Dunkin Dounuts (like the one in the picture) on the corner of Osborne Street and Springside Ave (which will complete Eduardo Batista's desire to have a Dunkin Dounuts store in EVERY WARD IN DANBURY).

To put it in layman's terms, this proposal is nuts. I can't find one person living in the neighborhood who wants this building placed at the proposed location. Due to the increase in traffic flow, to the unsafe safety conditions, including the fact that the business would be one building away from the Melody & Halas Fire Department as well as creating a hazard for children who walk down and across Osborne to their school on Broadview, neighbors screamed foul and decided to fight back. Residents in the area held a petition drive as well as sent letters and testified in front of the planning commission during the public hearing when the building was being proposed.

In the end, due to the testimony from the public, as well as evidence presented that reinforced the point that the proposed location for the building was unsuitable for the neighborhood, the application was denied.

Here's a copy of the resolution of denial from the planning commission (PLEASE NOTE THE PORTION I HIGHLIGHTED IN BOLD).
Denial of Special Exception/Site Plan Application for SE 644 Dunkin Donuts Osborne Street


(203) 797-4525
(203) 797-4586 (FAX)

Resolution: Dated September 15, 2006
Revised and Adopted on September 20, 2006

To: Planning Commission

From: Jennifer L. Emminger, Associate Planner

Re: SE 644
Dunkin Donuts
Osborne Street and Springside Avenue
Assessor's Lot # 112221


Whereas the City of Danbury Planning Commission received an application on March 15, 2006 from Artel Engineering, agent for Eduardo Batista, for approval of a Special Exception/Site Plan for Dunkin Donuts, a 2,160 sq. ft. fast food restaurant with a drive-thru located at the comer of Osborne Street and Springside Avenue, and

Whereas pursuant to • 3.E.2 of the Zoning Regulations, the use is allowed as a special exception in the CG-20 Zoning District upon approval by the Planning Commission affirming that standards and conditions pertaining thereto have been met, and

Whereas the site plan, as modified by the applicant, includes a 2,160 square foot Dunkin' Donuts facility with a drive-thru, and associated driveway access, parking, landscaping and drainage improvements, and

Whereas in accordance with 9 8.7d of the Connecticut General Statutes, the Planning Commission conducted a duly advertised Public Hearing that opened on May 17,2006, continued on June 21,2006 and July 26, 2006 and closed on August 19, 2006, and

Whereas the following maps and plans have been received and reviewed by the Planning Commission and City , staff:

 1.Maps under the general title "Dunkin' Donuts, Osborne Street, City of Danbury, Fairfield County, Connecticut', prepared by Artel Engineering Group, LLC:

  A. Subtitled 'Cover Sheet', dated 10/13/05;
  B. Subtitled 'Site Plan', dated 10/13/05-revised through 7/19/06;
  C. Subtitled 'Grading and Utility Plan', dated 10/13/05-revised 6/27/06;
  D. Subtitled 'Landscape and Lighting Plan', dated 1 0/13/05-revised through 7/19/06;
  E. Subtitled 'Sediment & Erosion Control Plan', dated 10/13/05-revised 6/27/06;
  F. Subtitled 'Site Details 1', dated 10/13/05;
  G. Subtitled 'Site Details n', dated 10/13/05;
  H. Subtitled 'Truck Turning Plan', dated 6/27/06
  I. Subtitled 'Existing Drainage Shed', dated 10/13/05 and
  J. Subtitled 'Proposed Drainage Shed', dated 10/13/05.

 2. Plans under the general title "Dunkin Donuts", Prepared by James D. Smith Architects, dated 6/13/06:

  A. Sheet AI0 - Subtitled 'Proposed Exterior Elevations' and
  B. Sheet AII-8ubtitled 'Proposed Exterior Elevations.

 3. Survey titled "Improvement Location Survey, Showing Property of Bruce J. Daab, property situated at Osborne Street and Springside Avenue", prepared by Surveying Associates, P.C., dated November 18, 2005.

 4. Site Engineering Report, Prepared for Dunkin' Donuts, Osborne Street and Springside Avenue, Danbury, Connecticut, Prepared by Artel Engineering Group, LLC, dated March 2006.

 5. Traffic Study, Dunkin' Donuts, Osborne Street & Springside Avenue, Danbury, Connecticut, Prepared for Artel Engineering, Prepared by Barkan & Mess Associates, dated March 14,2006.

 6. Report titled "Planned Development Osborne Street, Danbury, CT, Environmental Acoustics Study", Prepared by David Taylor, dated June 2006.

 7. The following documents were submitted during the Public Hearing held on May 17, 2006:

  A. A petition titled "We say No to Application for Special Exception to allow Dunkin Donuts Generating 500 Cars Daily JI221 SE 644 Osborne Street" and
  B. Exhibit A - Correspondence trom Beverly McCarthy, 9 Springside Avenue.

 8. Photos of truck deliveries at other Dunkin Donuts facilities were submitted during the Public Hearing held on July 19,2006.

 9. Correspondence received by the Planning and Zoning Department on June 6, 2006 from Patricia Tallman.

 10. Correspondence received by the Planning and Zoning Department on June 6, 2006 from Valerie Bose.

Whereas, during the public hearing, the Planning Commission discussed the application, raising specific concerns regarding the proposed entrance on Springside Avenue, on site traffic circulation, off site traffic circulation, pedestrian safety, steepness of Springside Avenue at the intersection, weather conditions affecting intersection safety, compatibility with the residential neighborhood, sound, customer parking along Springside Avenue, truck deliveries, screening, landscaping and the aesthetics of the building, and

Whereas, pursuant to ~ 10.CA of the City of Danbury Zoning Regulations, no petition for a Special Exception shall be granted by the Planning Commission unless such petition is in compliance with all provisions of the Zoning Regulations.

Now therefore be it resolved that the Planning Commission of the City of Danbury does hereby deny the application by Artel Engineering for a Dunkin Donuts, SE 644, to be located at the comer of Osborne Street and Springside Avenue (Assessor's Lot # JI2221) having found that the application as submitted does not meet the additional requirements for the granting of a Special Exception per as Section 1O.C.4 of the Zoning Regulations based on the following reasons:

 1. The proposal is not designed in a manner, which is compatible with the character of the neighborhood:

  A. Based on evidence in the record and on individual experiences of the Planning Commission with the operation of similar facilities as proposed, the intensity of the use is not compatible with the existing neighborhood from which primary access to the site is proposed.
  B. There are no reasonable requirements that could be imposed that would render the proposed use compatible with the residential neighborhood.

 2. The proposal will create conditions adversely affecting traffic safety and will cause undue traffic congestion:

  A. Pursuant to • 10.D.8.a. of the City of Danbury Zoning Regulations, 'all proposed uses for which a site plan is required shall provide for ingress and egress to the site which does not adversely impact the normal flow of traffic or the normal safe conditions of the roadways'. The Planning Commission has determined, based on evidence in the record and the personal experiences of the Planning Commission, that the proposed roadway improvements to Osborne Street and Springside Avenue may not adequately accommodate the increase in the volume of traffic without a significant decline in traffic safety.
  B. Pursuant to • 10.D.8.b. of the City of Danbury Zoning Regulations, '....may require such reasonable improvements as may be necessary to accommodate traffic increases caused by the proposed development to maintain existing levels of service and traffic safety. Volumes will increase sufficiently to change the character of the neighborhood and the new turning movements cannot, in the Planning Commission's judgment, be accommodated into the existing traffic flows so as not to cause conditions that are unsafe.

   i. According.. to the Traffic Study submitted by the applicant's traffic engineer, the proposed use expects approximately 400 vehicle trips during morning peak, of which 240 vehicles trips already exist on Osborne Street and 160 trips will be new to the area. The Traffic dictates a substantial increase in the traffic movements of the Springside Avenue westbound left and right turn lanes. According to Figures 3 and 6 of the Traffic Study, during the morning peak hour, an increase from 10 vehicular trips to 90 trips for the left turn lane is expected and an increase from 10 vehicular trips to 110 trips for the right turn lane is expected. Furthermore, the Traffic Study indicates a significant increase in the traffic movements of both of the Osborne Street northbound and southbound turn movements onto Springside Avenue. According to Figures 3 and 6 of the Traffic Study, during morning peak hour, an increase from 15 to 110 trips for the northbound right turn and an increase from 5 to 90 trips for southbound left turn is expected.

   ii. Vehic1es exiting Dunkin Donuts traveling westbound to Osborne Street must exit at an un-signalized T -intersection. Due to existing and proposed traffic volumes on Osborne Street, left turn movements exiting the site into southbound traffic will prove to be difficult for motorists. Additionally, vehicles attempting a left turn onto Osborne Street will be confronted with three opposing traffic patterns at this intersection; (1) vehicles traveling northbound on Osborne Street (2) vehicles traveling southbound on Osborne Street turning left on to Springside Avenue and (3) vehicles traveling southbound on Osborne Street utilizing the proposed bypass lane.

  C. The Planning Commission, based on testimony given by the neighbors and the Commission's personal knowledge of the traffic volumes and movements on Osborne Street and the immediate area, finds that with the substantial increase in new traffic movements at this intersection, the proposed roadway improvements along Osborne Street and Springside Avenue will not result in safe traffic movements for the reasons outlined in #2 above.

 3. The use will jeopardize public health and safety.

  A. Based on the experience of the Planning Commission with similar facilities and existing pedestrian flows in the neighborhood that is supported by testimony in the record, pedestrian traffic in the area is likely to increase and coupled with the increase in volume and conflicting traffic movements may create unsafe pedestrian conditions that may jeopardize public health and safety.

 4. Given the conditions and constraints existing on Osborne Street and Springside Avenue peculiar to this site and the proposed use, the Planning Commission can find no reasonable improvements that will ensure full compliance with the provisions of Section lO.C.4.a.

cc: Sean Hearty, Zoning Enforcement Officer
George Gleason, Permit Center
Farid Khouri, Engineering Department
Abdul Mohammed, Traffic Engineer
Chief Alan Baker, City of Danbury Police Department
Barry Rickert, Fire Marshal
Fran Lollie, Highway Department
Leo Null, Building Department
Robin Edwards, Corporation Counsel

Now, if you read the portions of the resolution in bold, you'll notice that the the points raised in the denial HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH THE SIZE OF THE DUNKIN DOUNUTS BUILDING and more to do with the VARIOUS PROBLEMS THAT WOULD RESULT IF THE BUSINESS WAS BUILT IN THE LOCATION.

Although the neighbors in the neighborhood jumped for joy, the good feeling didn't last for long.

Everyone's favorite "loophole" lawyer Neil Marcus and Batista pulled a REAL sneeky move and decreased the size of the building in order to decrease the estimated traffic from over 500 to 498. You're saying to yourself "well so what." Well, here's the deal, by decreasing the size of the building and lowering the traffic rate below the magical number of 500, Marcus was able to re-submit the building proposal by bypassing the planning commission decision. In other words, since Marcus was able to get the traffic below 500 BY TWO CARS, the Dunkin Dounut King was able to stick his tongue out to the neighborhood, resubmit his applicaiton directly to the planning department, and deny the public a chance to speak out against this proposal.


All the work the public did in fighting this proposal (including the large number of letters submitted, as well as testimony) can not be used towards this new application. In fact, the public can not even be granted a public hearing on the matter because the application is submitted directly to the planning department and NOT the planning commission.

Now, you can't freak out on the people in the planning department, it's not their fault that they have to deal with this nonsense. Blame should be placed on people who can't seem to understand the term "NO" or "DENIED."


Now, the first ward I visited in my feedback campaign across the city was the third ward, which is the ward where this idiotic business is being rammed down people's throats. I talked to several neighbors on Springside Ave who are extremely upset and wanted to know if there was anything they could do to fight back. Now, although there is no public hearing on this matter, as a activist I know one thing, SUBMITTING LETTERS TO CITY HALL IS EFFECTIVE. In other words, PEOPLE NEED TO RESUBMIT THOSE LETTERS AND PRONTO!

...this is where HatCityBLOG comes in.

IF YOU WANT TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE, THE PEOPLE AT CITY HALL NEED TO HEAR FROM YOU! Time is running out, a decision on this proposal can happen as soon as March 1st so time is of the essence. PLEASE email Planning Assistant Joanne Reed at j.read@ci.danbury.us and Jennifer Emminger at j.emminger@ci.danbury.us and tell them that you do NOT support the "shady" changes in the proposal THAT DO NOT CHANGE THE CONCERNS IN THE PLANNING COMMISSION PROPOSAL.

Marcus' sneeky plan to get the traffic below 500 will not 1.) change the public safety problems and 2.) change health concerns which resulted in the proposal being denied in the first place. THEREFORE, WHEN WRITING YOUR LETTER AND EMAIL, PLEASE MAKE A POINT TO REMIND JOANNE AND JENNIFER AT THE PLANNING DEPARTMENT THOSE TWO IMPORTANT POINTS. Simply read the statement of denial again and apply the concerns regarding public safety and health towards your letter...it's that easy.

This site is going to do everything in it's power to bring awareness to this insane issue in an attempt to get the public involved and express their outrage. From now until the decision is reached, I will being you various posts on this topic including video footage from members of the neighborhood, as well as complete footage of the public hearing when the public came out and fought back against Marcus and Batista (it's one thing to read the outrage, it's a whole different matter when you can watch what happened at the meeting, hear the testimony, hear the questions from member of the commission who had grave reservations regarding the placement of the store in the proposed location, and the garbage that flowed out of Marcus' mouth).

To give people who are not familiar with the neighborhood a better understanding of what the residents are dealing with, I made this short video clip of the proposed location. Take special note of slope of the road on Springside Ave, the odd location of the property (which would require to make a turn to Springside off Osborne), and remember HOW CLOSE THIS PLACE WILL BE TO DANBURY HOSPITAL (doctors and nurses to work=stopping for coffee)

NOTE: I walked up and down the street when I shot this footage...the line of site would be lower if you were driving a car and it's very difficult to see traffic driving left to right on Osborne from Springside.

First, here are two images of the Osborne Street/Springside Ave intersection. The proposed Dunkin Donuts site is boxed in red in the second image.

...and keep the odd location of the site as well as the slope of Springside Ave in mind when you watch the video.

Hopefully you get an idea of how awful this planned Dunkin Donuts proposal would be for people living in Springside Avenue area (ugh, I can just see people taking cutting through Springside to get around traffic on Osborne).

Again, PLEASE email Planning Assistant Joanne Reed at j.read@ci.danbury.us and Jennifer Emminger at j.emminger@ci.danbury.us and tell them that you do NOT support the "shady" changes in the proposal THAT DO NOT CHANGE THE CONCERNS IN THE PLANNING COMMISSION PROPOSAL.

A special section on HatCityBLOG will be created for the purpose of keeping everyone informed in this situation. Please come back for updates.

Immigrant supporters lash out against mayor, announce forum

Friday, February 23, 2007
Time: 9:46 PM

On Thursday afternoon, Stop the Raids, a Danbury-based immigrant rights' group held a news conference to comment on their upcoming immigration forum this Sunday as well as the recent arrests by the U.S. Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE) at the Office of Adult Probation over the past few weeks.

Since the presser, a spokesperson for ICE disputed the number of individuals arrested stated by Maria-Cinta Lowe, executive director of the Hispanic Center of Greater Danbury.
Paula Grenier, spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration Customs and Enforcement, confirmed Thursday that ICE recently arrested three people on immigration law violations at Danbury's probation office.

She could not provide the dates the arrests were made.

Rhonda Stearley-Hebert, spokeswoman for the state Judicial Branch, which oversees probation offices throughout the state, also said there were three, not 12, arrests at the Danbury office.

"(ICE) was notified by probation. Now, these three individuals are in ICE custody and will have a hearing before a judge," Grenier said. "There were not 12 arrests."
Lowe responded by reiterated her statement about the arrest.
Lowe, executive director of the Hispanic Center of Greater Danbury and supporter of Stop the Raids, said family members of those arrested have contacted her over the past several days, and she is aware of at least nine cases that occurred at the Main Street probation office and at least three other arrests made elsewhere in Danbury.

"I don't make accusations without proof," she said. "(ICE) may want to minimize what they are doing."

Lowe released the names of five people she claims were arrested but declined to release more because she needed to time notify family members.

Questions surrounding Mayor Boughton's role in the entire immigration matter was a big topic of conversation and claims of Danbury turning into a "police state" with the probation department acting as federal immigration officers dominating the presser.

Several individuals such as Common Councilwoman Lynn Taborsak had no problem letting her feelings known about the mayor's activities and it's fair to say that I'll hear more comments about Boughton throughout the forum.

One thing is for certain, with the arrests of the individuals at the probation office as well as the recent arrest of Tereza Pereira, the level of emotion among those in the Hispanic and Latino immigrant community regarding this issue has intensified to a level I've not witnessed since the start of this site.

You quickly get a sense of anger and raw emotion among the supporters as you watch and listen to the tales of individuals who went through the ICE process in the following videoclip (run time aprox. 28 mins).

Over this weekend, in the lead up to the upcomming forum, I'll re-broadcast several immigration events that I've attended over the last two years as well as provide a brief timeline to how Danbury reached this point.

UPDATE: Grr....I posted the unfinished version of the video. I'll update this post once the correct version of the video is uploaded.

UPDATE 2: Okay, the correct videofile is posted. Enjoy.

UPDATE 3: Title updated.


Time: 12:10 PM

Still working on the video footage. Youtube was acting really funny right now...

Upcoming news...

Thursday, February 22, 2007
Time: 2:34 PM

Today is a quite a busy news day in Danbury and the day is far from over.

First, I attended the immigration forum press conference this afternoon and I'll bring you a full round-up of what happened to the presser later today. Do to possible legal matters, I have to hold back on a few things for now but the video will be posted soon.

Next, I have more news on the god-awful, idiotic Dunkin Dounuts project and Eduardo Batista sick dream to have a dounut shop in every ward in Danbury.

Finally, I'll report on everything that will happen at Helena Abrantes' mayoral candidacy announcement from the Catholic War Veterans Building later tonight.

It's alive...IT'S ALIVE!!!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007
Time: 6:27 PM

Attaboy Eugene!

Helena Abrantes starts her mayoral journey tomorrow

Time: 5:40 PM

Well, I know I was going to break the news to everyone but things I've been running around like a chicken without a head with all the projects I'm involved with...

I'll keep this brief...

At this month's Democratic Town Committee meeting last Monday, DTC 2nd Ward co-Captain, Helena Abrantes announced that she's taking her first steps in her journey to become the Democratic nominee for mayor. Abrantes will make her intent official tomorrow night at 7:00 P.M. at the Catholic War Veterans Building, which is off White Street at 2 Shalvoys Lane (Google Map).

Now, it's only Feburary folks and if the past means anything, there is a very good chance that more Democrats will step up to the plate and make their intentions known (remember how many Democrats threw their hats into the race in 2005). In any case, Abrantes is a well-known in the area from her years as City Clerk and member of the Common Council and would make the mayoral race VERY interesting.

Again, I apoligize for not dropping this news on everyone last week. Hopefully, things will get to full speed on this site soon as I'm almost done getting everything organized and preparing to take this site to the next level.

From last weeks DTC meeting, here's video footage of Abrantes' making her announcement.

More news to come.

Murphy in town today

Time: 12:53 PM

Congressman Chris Murphy is holding a press conference today at Danbury Hospital at 1:00 to dicuss the outrageous cuts to Medicare and Medicaid President Bush is proposing the latest budget he submitted to Congress.

Unfortunately, to do schedule conflicts, I won't be able to attend the presser but I'm sure this will be covered in the press later today.

Keith Olbermann loves the drunk from New Milford

Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Time: 5:52 PM

I just love it when the mainstream media picks up on a story which received it's buzz from the blogs.

It's even better when the blog that started it all is from Connecticut.

Here's where it all started. My favorite town drunk from New Milford picked up on an interesting story on a big-time Republican donor who was slapped with terrorism charges...well, I'll let him tell the story.

Ok... So the terrorism part first:

Terrorism charges brought Friday against the administrator of a loan investment program claimed that he secretly tried to send $152,000 to the Middle East to buy equipment such as night vision goggles for a terrorist training camp in Afghanistan.

Abdul Tawala Ibn Ali Alishtari, 53, of Ardsley, N.Y., pleaded not guilty in U.S. District Court in Manhattan to an indictment accusing him of terrorism financing, material support of terrorism and other charges. The charges carried a potential penalty of 95 years in prison.

But would you really believe me if I told you he was a Republican?

CBS News has confirmed that Alishtari is a donor to the Republican Party, as he claims on his curriculum vitae. Alishtari gave $15,500 to the National Republican Campaign Committee between 2002 and 2004, according to Federal Election Commission records. That amount includes $13,000 in 2003, a year when he claims to have been named NRCC New York State Businessman of the Year.

Alishtari also claims to be a lifetime member of the National Republican Senate Committee's Inner Circle, which the NRCC describes as "an impressive cross-section of American society – community leaders, business executives, entrepreneurs, retirees, and sports and entertainment celebrities – all of whom hold a deep interest in our nation's prosperity and security."

The Republican party needs to be placed on "The List" of terrorist related organizations and watched very carefully.

It is pretty apparent that the FBI and Homeland Security are wasting their time watching us liberal/peacenik/Quaker/progressive/etc. types. Just ask Ken Krayeske...
The blogger does a follow-up on how the conservative media covered the story.
Late Update: Funny. TPM Reader B points out that the New York Post chose a rather different way of reporting this story. Their lede: "A Westchester businessman and purported peace activist was nabbed by the feds for allegedly plotting to funnel more than $150,000 to terrorists at training camps in Afghanistan and Pakistan."

No mention of Republican ties. Let me know when they follow up ...
Don't' hold your breath, it's the New York Post.

Over the last 48 hours, that particular blog posting from received a great deal of attention from such national blogs as Crooks and Liars, Talking Points Memo, and Raw Story, which in turn gave this New York Story a great deal of national attention. Last night, Keith Olbermann grabbed the ball and gives this blog posting new legs. Take a look.

Make no mistake about it, the blogs pushed this story hard and it all started from a blogger from New Milford. As we approach the 2007 and 2008 elecitons, you'll see more blog postings from progressive blogs popping into the mainstream media. If the 2006 elections told bloggers anything, it's that if blogs generate loud enough of a buzz, the mainstream media will take notice.

Once again, People Powered Media strikes again...I'm buying that drunk a shot!

Working out the bugs

Time: 11:44 AM

Well, it seems like the new template is holding up. I'm in the process of doing more tweaks to the code and adding more additions to the frontpage. Once I'm finished, you might have to refresh your page to see the changes...

In any event, this is MUCH better than that standard boring Blogger template and things are only going to get better from here.

Again, if you see any problems with the site that I didn't catch, PLEASE feel free to email me ad hatcityblog at yahoo dot com.

Thanks in advance!

In case you miss the Danbury IMC...

Monday, February 19, 2007
Time: 1:37 PM

check out what the crew over at the Hartford chapter of the Independent Media Center are doing online. Oh, how I miss the Danbury IMC: HatCity Press!!!

Say no to Dunkin Dounuts

Time: 10:27 AM

A recent News-Times editorial gives the thumbs down to money-hungry Eduardo Batista's dream to have a Dunkin Dounuts in every ward in Danbury.
Eduardo Batista has found that local residents like Dunkin' Donuts coffee and other products and has expanded his franchise throughout the region.

His latest proposal is to build a Dunkin' Donuts on the corner of Osborne Street and Springside Avenue in Danbury. It's one of the city's older neighborhoods, and the neighbors are upset.

Batista previously proposed a larger Dunkin' Donuts store for the site, which was rejected last fall by the Danbury Planning Commission.

Batista is taking the city to court over that rejection, a common tactic when large development proposals are rejected but somewhat unusual for a doughnut store.

In addition to taking the city to court, Batista has asked the city to approve a different version of a Dunkin' Donuts for the site. This time he says he wants to build a drive-through store, like the one on Danbury's Lake Avenue.

Because it would be smaller and because Batista now says the store would generate 498 car visits a day, not 500, the proposal qualifies for review by the Planning Department staff, not the Planning Commission, without a public hearing.

In the meantime, the neighbors are wondering what is happening to Danbury, not an uncommon feeling these days as development springs up everywhere and traffic clogs the streets.

"Our nice, quiet residential street is under siege," says Beverly McCarthy, who has lived on Springside Avenue for 50 years.

Batista certainly knows doughnuts better than the rest of us, so maybe a big legal fight over a doughnut shop on Springside Avenue isn't as odd as it seems.

But the money Batista is spending on this says something about the pressure facing Danbury from developers.

Older neighborhoods, elected officials, employees of the Planning Department and Danbury taxpayers are all under pressure. Turn a bad proposal down, the developers' message goes, and we'll sue you and run up the city's legal bills.

There were plenty of good reasons to turn down Batista's proposal for a Dunkin' Donuts on Springside Avenue. It's just not the best location for a business that will generate so much traffic. But instead of finding a different location, Batista is suing the city and offering a second proposal as a legal tactic.

Danbury has to get a handle on its growth and protect older neighborhoods from inappropriate development. It needs the help of developers to do that.

Curry raises excellent points regarding Gov. Rell budget proposal

Sunday, February 18, 2007
Time: 11:33 AM

Bingo!! Give Bil Curry the big prize for his analysis (take sepcial note of the items I highlighted in bold).
...Rell's plan isn't property-tax reform. To pay for repealing the car tax, she repeals the property-tax credit, thus raising taxes on homes. Some break. Knowing what we do about climate change and cities, do we really want to make it easier to own a car and harder to own a home?

Democrats think doing Rell's plan means sacrificing health care reform. One of their plans raises health care spending $450 million. Besides raising taxes, Rell pays for her plan by cutting, of all things, health care. Democrats fear she's digging them a deep hole.

Democrats don't see the money for health care and property-tax reform this year, and not within the present spending cap. How do we afford later what we can't afford now? If we don't change systems, whichever reform we do first will be the only one we ever do.

Tackling property-tax and health care reform together makes sense. Health care's the biggest item in state budgets, as education is in local budgets, which, if you haven't heard, are financed mostly by property taxes. To address either, legislators must cut costs and define "spending" under the constitutional cap.

I've argued for opening up the state employee health care plan to small businesses and the self-employed. Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards recently proposed doing it at the federal level. He'll do well. People are desperate to fix a system whose waste and inefficiency are literally killing them.

The idea costs taxpayers nothing;
the state's but a broker lending its clout to small buyers. It gives government a chance to show what it can do, in contrast to a dying employer-based system. In the end, it will lead to lower costs for everyone, government included. If not, it will die.

To do it right, we must do it all: property-tax relief, a better bargain on health care, an honest spending cap. Want to end isolation of schoolchildren by race and class? Fix the tax that's strangling cities and towns. Want health care for all? Stop wasting a fortune on overhead. Want to fix the spending cap? Cut costs and cut taxes and the public will consider it.
Well said.

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10.03.18 (PDF):
"Approval of Danbury Prospect Charter School"

10.30.20 (HatCityBLOG VID): Charter School discussion during 2020 interview with Julie Kushner

2018 (RADIO): WLAD
"State Board of Ed signs off on Danbury charter school proposal"

08.20 (VID): CT-LEAD
"Stand up for Education Justice" Rally

08.20.20 (OP-ED): KUSHNER: "Charter schools are not ‘magic bullet’ to improving Danbury schools"

09.13.20 (OP-ED): CHAPMAN
Candidate for state Senate supports charter school for Danbury

01.15.21 (VID): CT-LEAD
Danbury Prospect Charter School press conference

03.19.21 (OP-ED): CT MIRROR
"Danbury leaders do not want a charter school"

04.01.21 (OP-ED): CT-LEAD:
"Why did Sen. Kushner vote against us?"

05.06.21 (VID): Danbury rally to fully fund public schools

10.07.21 (VID): Danbury City-Wide PTO "Meet the Candidates" education forum

10.07.21 NEWSTIMES
Danbury candidates quarrel over charter school, education funding

01.10.22 NEWSTIMES
"New operator named for Danbury charter school: ‘I’m a huge advocate for parent choice’"

01.10.22 NEWSTIMES
"Some Danbury Democrats ‘open minded’ about charter school after new, CT operator named"

01.21.22 (OP-ED): CT MIRROR
"Lessons from Danbury: Ending the dual process for charter school approval"

02.09.22 NEWSTIMES
"Proposed Danbury charter school won’t open in 2022, governor leaves funding out of budget"

02.18.22 NEWSTIMES:
Danbury residents plead for charter school funds in 9-hour state budget hearing: ‘Just exhausted’

03.05.22 (LTE):
Time has come for Danbury charter school

03.12.22 (OP-ED): TAYLOR
"Why I am excited about the Danbury Charter School"

03.16.22 (LTE):
"Why a Danbury Charter School?"

04.02.22 CT EXAMINER:
"Crowding and a Lack of Options for Danbury Students, But No Agreement on Solutions"

04.04.22 (OP-ED): DCS
"Danbury Charter School plans debut"

04.07.22 (PODCAST): (CEA)

04.18.22 (VID): CT-LEAD
Protest press conference

04.25.22 (RADIO): WSHU
Latino group call on Connecticut lawmakers to open a Danbury charter school

06.03.22 (OP-ED): KUSHNER:
"Career Academy ‘a great deal for Danbury"

On September 26, 2007, ten plaintiffs filed suit in response to an arrest of aday laborers at a public park in Danbury, Connecticut. Plaintiffs amended their complaint on November 26, 2007.

The amended complaint states that plaintiffs sought to remedy the continued discriminatory and unauthorized enforcement of federal immigration laws against the Latino residents of the City of Danbury by Danbury's mayor and its police department.

Plaintiffs allege that the arrests violated their Fourth Amendment rights and the Connecticut Constitution because defendants conducted the arrests without valid warrants, in the absence of exigent circumstances, and without probable cause to believe that plaintiffs were engaged in unlawful activity. In addition, plaintiffs allege that defendants improperly stopped, detained, investigated, searched and arrested plaintiffs. Plaintiffs also allege that defendants violated their Fourteenth Amendment rights when they intentionally targeted plaintiffs, and arrested and detained them on the basis of their race, ethnicity and perceived national origin. Plaintiffs raise First Amendment, Due Process and tort claims.

Plaintiffs request declaratory relief, damages and attorneys fees.



Danbury Area Coalition for the Rights of Immigrants v.
U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security
3:06-cv-01992-RNC ( D. Conn. )

(02.25.08) Court docket

(10.24.07) Memorandum in Opposition to Defendant's Emergency Motion for Protective Order

(09.26.07) Press Release

(12.14.06) Complaint

Barrera v. Boughton, No. 07-01436
(D. Conn. filed Sept. 26, 2007)

(02.25.08) Court Docket

Amended complaint

Defendants' Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction

Defendants' Motion to Dismiss State Law Claims

Plaintiffs' Opposition to Motion to Dismiss

Order on Motion to Dismiss

Defendants' Answer to Amended Complaint

NEW HAVEN REGISTER: Immigrant's 2006 arrest was flawed Danbury mayor testifies

(10.05.07 (VIDEO) Boughton mislead the public about Danbury's involvement in raid

(09.18.07) Yale Law Students expose Danbury involvement in raid

(12.14.06) VIDEO: Interview with Yale Law Students at FOI presser

(12.14.06) VIDEO: Danbury 11 FOI complaint media roundup

City Clerk Jean Natale standing next to skinhead sparks outrage

(10.03.06) VIDEO: Danbury 11 rally

(09.29.06) VIDEO: Danbury 11 case deepens

Word of raid spread across the country

(09/29/06) VIDEO: Danbury 11 protest news conference

(09/29/06) Immigrant newspaper "El Canillita" gives best account of ICE day labor raid at Kennedy Park

trans_button Santos Family Story
VIDEO: Tereza Pereira's ordeal with ICE agents

VIDEO: Danbury Peace Coalition Immigration Forum (April 2006)
featuring Mayor Boughton and Immigration attorney Philip Berns

VIDEO: 2007 Stop the Raids immigration forum at WCSU

2007: Community protest anti-immigration forum

A tribute to Hispanic Center Director and immigrant activist Maria Cinta Lowe



11.15.23 Recanvass return
(Head Moderator Return Format)

11.07.23: Election night returns
(Head Moderator Return Format)

11.07.23: Initial returns

Oct 10 2022
Jan 10 2023
Apr 10 2023
Jul 10 2023
Oct 10 2023

Apr 10 2023
Jul 10 2023
Oct 10 2023

Dem/GOP slate/ballot position

VIDEO: DRTC convention
VIDEO: DDTC conveniton


(VID) DDTC nomination convention
(PDF) DDTC campaign slate flyer

(VID) DRTC nomination convention
(PDF) DRTC campaign slate flyer

(VID) 2021 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum

First quarter
Alves Apr 10th SEEC filing

Second quarter
Alves Jul 10th SEEC filing
Esposito Jul 10th SEEC filing

Third quarter
Alves Oct 12th SEEC report
Esposito Oct 12th SEEC report

Alves "Jan 6th" attack mailer 10.21.21
Esposito "you can't trust Alves" attack mailer 10.20.21
Alves mailer 10.20.21
Alves mailer 09.30.21
Esposito mailer 09.28.21
Alves mailer 09.27.21
Esposito mailer 09.27.21


Danbury 2005 election results
Newstimes Dean Esposito profile (10.25.05)

Danbury 2007 election results
(VID) Helana Abrantes TV ad
(VID) BRT tax deferral presser
(VID) Helena Abrantes "Community Forum" interview

Danbury 2009 election results
(VID) 2009 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum
(VID) 2009 Danbury Chamber of Commerce mayoral debate
(VID) 2009 DDTC nomination convention

Danbury 2011 election results
(VID) Saadi/Nero campaign kickoff

Danbury 2013 election results
(VID) 2013 DDTC nominaiton convention

Danbury 2015 election results

Danbury 2017 election results
(VID) Al Almeida concession speech
(VID) 2017 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum
(VID) Al Almeida nomination acceptance speech

Danbury 2019 election results
(VID) 2019 NewsTimes Editorial Board interview with Mark Boughton and Chris Setaro
(VID) 2019 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum
(VID) 2019 Danbury Chamber of Commerce mayoral debate
(VID) 2019 convention endorsement speeches from Mark Boughton and Chris Setaro