HatCityBLOG VIDEO: Board of Education discussion on DHS principal search
Time: 3:12 PM
From this week's Board of Education special meeting, here's the discussion members of the board had regarding the recent exodus of DHS Principal Robert "I'm homesick" Rossi, the appointment of Assistant Principal Gary Bocaccio as interim principal, and moving forward with addressing various problems at the high school.
What's with the clear-cutting of trees at Kennedy Ave?
Time: 10:04 PM
07.30.11 WRITE-UP HAS BEEN UPDATED WITH NEW INFORMATION (at the end of the post).
I received a number of emails from people wanting to know more information regarding who's responsible for the horrible clear-cutting of trees on the corner of Kennedy Ave and Rose Street.
For those who are out of the loop, here's a little video of the land in question…
The name of the developer responsible for this situation is ILO.ENTERPRISES LLC. The developer is in the process of building a four unit condo on at the site of the green building in the above photograph (located on Bells Lane) and has filed an application for a "BRT-type" seven year residential tax deferral for the property. A city council ad-hoc committee was recently established to look into the matter.
June 2011 City Council Minutes:
14 - COMMUNICATION - Deferral of Assessment Increase - 64 Bells Lane
Council Member Seabury requested referral to an ad hoc with Corporation Counsel Director of Finance, Director of Planning and Tax Assessor. Mayor Boughton so ordered and appointed Council Members Trombetta, Stanley and Visconti to the committee.
The developer's property line DOES NOT include the area that was stripped; as far as I can tell, the property that was clear-cutted is owned by the city.
To make matters worse, just as with the case with the now infamous BRT-Hospital Ave development water runoff disaster, there appears to be no proper sedimentation controls established at the location, which could result water and debris running onto Kennedy Ave and Rose Street.
Here's what happened when BRT didn't install proper sedimentation controls after they clear cutter the land on Hospital Ave…
Since City Hall is closed on Fridays, I'll have to wait till next week to talk to the Zoning Enforcement department about the situation but I do know that members of the city council are aware of the situation…
UPDATE 07.30.11: The rabbit hole goes deeper...
Not only is the land in question CITY OWNED PROPERTY, on July 6th ILO Enterprises, LLC wrote a letter of inquiry to the city council regarding the possible purchase of the land.
City Council August 2011 agenda; Item 10 (pdf file):
Here's lies the problem...since the land is still the ownership of the city (a.k.a. the taxpayers of the city of Danbury), the developer had no right in tampering with the PUBLIC'S LAND.
Since this item is on the August City Council agenda, an ad-hoc committee still needs to be established to look into the matter. Also (and MOST IMPORTANT), because of State House Bill No. 5729 (introduced by State Rep. Joe Taborsak back in 2007 and eventually signed into law by former Gov. Jodi Rell), any selling of public land by a municipality would require a public hearing where residents would be provided an opportunity to have their say on the matter.
2007 Statement from State Rep. Joe Taborsak on HB 5729:
May 4, 2007
REP. TABORSAK HAILS PASSAGE OF CITY LAND SALES LEGISLATION
State Representative Joseph Taborsak (D-Danbury), hailed passage of legislation he introduced that will require municipalities to provide notice and hearing before voting on the sale, lease or transfer of municipally-owned property. “House Bill No. 5729 provides for greater protection of publicly-owned open space, parks and playgrounds, while insuring that the public will have their voice heard on land sales that might affect their neighborhoods,” Taborsak said.
“I am very pleased to see this bill pass the House of Representatives by an overwhelming majority. This is a very important step for this legislation and I am optimistic that it will get out of Senate successfully,” Rep. Taborsak stated.
This legislation was in part a result of outcry from neighbors in the Bear Mountain area of Danbury who were unaware that the Danbury Common Council tried to sell a piece of land which would have impacted their neighborhood and another situation involving Teryville Park land.
Danbury’s lawmakers Bob Godfrey (District 110) and Jason Barlett (District 2) co-sponsored and supported the bill.
The council and the citizens of Danbury were not given their opportunity to speak in favor or in opposition in the selling of the now disturbed land. I don't know about you, but I don't think what the developer did was right and the city's zoning enforcement department should investigate this matter ASAP.
One on one with Bethel First Selectman Matt Knickerbocker
Time: 11:54 AM
THE CASE AGAINST JOHN McGOWAN: Update to come
Time: 7:43 PM
...and lets just say that McGowan's irrational behavior continues.
I'll update everyone on what happened today, McGowan's latest strange court filings as well as the upcoming schedule for the case. After nearly two years of waiting, the trial is about to begin and McGowan should know his fate by the end of next week.
More to come...
HatCityBLOG 2007 Archive: Taborsak rips Boughton over budget
Time: 5:00 PM
To give you an insight on what's to come, from 2007 here's Lynn Taborsak taking Boughton to task for his budget proposal for the 07-08 fiscal year. Note the list of concerns from then Councilwoman Taborsak regarding several problems with the budget process, which was rushed due to the resignation of then Department of Finance Chairwoman Dena Diorio.
Take note of the silly budget items from Boughton which Taborsak highlights, which include:
* 50,000 dollars in "transition" funding Ives Center.
* 146,000 tax break for BRT dormitory on Crosby Street.
* Lack of FULL broadcasting of meetings on the government access channel
* Hispanic Center funding taken away from them (in retaliation to the center's activism towards the rights of the immigrant community) to The Bridge to Independence and Career Opportunities (TBICO).
* Underfund the school budget by 1 million dollars
Watch and learn...
Prepare for fireworks this election season as Taborsak has a history of really going after Boughton in a way not seen by previous Democratic candidates for mayor.
...in short, this is going to be UGLY.
THE CASE AGAINST JOHN MCGOWAN: Five jurors picked; case set to begin NEXT WEEK
Time: 2:25 PM
"He who represents himself has a fool for a client." - Abraham Lincoln
Earth to McGowan: Playing time is OVER!
Five jurors have been selected so far in the state Superior Court trial of cable television talk show host and one-time Danbury mayoral candidate John McGowan, who is accused of sexually assaulting his then-girlfriend in New Milford nearly three years ago.
Three men and two women were accepted by both Senior Assistant State's Attoney David Shannon, the prosecutor, and by McGowan, who is serving as his own attorney, before the lunch recess Wednesday.
Three more jurors, one regular member and two alternates, must be chosen before testimony begins next week.
The 44-year-old defendant, who currently lives in Bethel where he runs an oil business, is accused of forcing the victim to have anal sex with him at a home he was building in New Milford in October 2008. McGowman contends the sex was consensual.
The defendant, who tried unsuccessfully to get the case dismissed using a variety of anti-government theories, got off to a rocky start in questioning the first few potential jurors, requiring the judge's assistance in properly framing his questions.
He also drew several rebukes from Ginocchio for seeking the advice of supporters in the gallery as to whether he should accept or reject some potential jurors.
"You can't communicate with anyone in the courtroom," Ginocchio said, noting he was trying to eliminate any jurors whose answers indicated they wouldn't be impartial.
For those who don't know, McGowan was the 2007 former mayoral candidate and infamous anti-immigrant whack-job who was the co-founder/former Vice President of the United States Citizens for Immigration and Law Enforcement hate-group, former treasurer of Paul Streitz's anti-immigration/hate group Connecticut Citizens for Immigration and Law Enforcement, and prominent figure in the xenophobic movement in the greater Danbury area.
From using his laughable pseudo-law defense, to his entourage of American Sovereignty goofballs, local bigots, and outcasts, McGowan's actions at various court appearances, which received national attention, have been bizarre to say the least.
...and after almost of two years of waiting, McGowan's rape trial is set to begin NEXT WEEK and should take only FIVE DAYS!
NOTE: I haven't been able to attend McGowan's last two court appearances but I plan to be there every day providing live updates of the trial once opening statements are underway.
UPDATE: Opening statements are set for NEXT WED at 9:30 AM
- McGowan harass marchers, desecrates Mexican flag at 2006 immigration rally
- McGowan joins racist local access personality Tom "Big T" Bennett in inciting people to harm members of the immigrant community.
- Fairfield Weekly mocks McGowan's campaign for mayor.
- Elise Marciano anti-immigrant group members applaud while speaker advocates placing immigrants in WW-II style concentration camps.
- Court trial day seven: Jury trial
- Court trial day six: Motions denied
- Court trial day five: Endless Endless subpoenas and bizarre motions to dismiss
- LITCHFIELD REGISTER-CITIZEN: Local man accused of rape is competent for trial
- NEWS-TIMES: McGowan found competent to stand trial in New Milford rape case
- Court trial day two: Excuses, excuses
- Court trial day one: Strange behavior, disturbing arrest warrant affidavit
- McGowan arrested, charged with first-degree sexual assault
Time: 1:26 PM
...for his salary and the temp at the Police Station is STILL over 80 degrees!
He can't be serious?
Time: 10:34 AM
Really? Did the part-time mayor REALLY say this?
Boughton said after his acceptance speech he expects the city will spend the next 18 months focusing on the challenge of providing quality education in crowded schools.
Issues that will need to be addressed by city leaders in coming years, he said, include an increasing enrollment in Danbury schools...
Hmm...the last time I checked, Boughton has been in office for the last TEN YEARS. Therefore, the increased over-crowding of the schools on the city happened under HIS watch.
Hmm...the last time I checked, it was Boughton that continuously cut funds to education...which resulted in the elimination of para-professionals while classroom sizes increases AS WELL AS art classes being taught at Stadley Rough School from a CART!
Hmm...the last time I checked, it was Boughton and his ilk on the city council that demonized the decisions made by the Board of Education.
Hmm...the last time I checked, it was Boughton who "punished" the Board of Education by taking back money that was already allocated to them simply because you didn't agree with the way the planned to use it.
Hey Markie Mark! Remember this oldie but goodie from last year?
Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton has gone too far and has overstepped boundaries in his attempt to cut the already approved education budget.
Boughton wants to take back the equivalent of raises given to four non-union administrators, and a salary for another.
The mayor has called the 2.5 percent raises to four people irresponsible at a time when an intermediate school is closing in the city and other cost-saving measures are being instituted.
He has a point. Every expenditure must be carefully weighed when it comes to educating children -- no matter the frugality of the economic times.
But it is too late. The mayor and the City Council had their chance to review the proposed education budget; they took the responsibility seriously and allowed a less than 2 percent increase above the previous year.
It was up to the Board of Education to work with that amount, though the increase was only half of what was requested. Neither the mayor nor the City Council ought to have line-item veto power over the Board of Education.
Mayor Boughton's suggestion, which was referred to committee last week by the City Council, amounts to posturing.
For trying to do so, Mayor Boughton, a former teacher, should get called into the principal's office.
While I'm on the subject of the last honest man in Danbury "punishing" the Board of Education, remember this exchange the mayor had with another member of the Taborsak family over the matter...
Hmm...the last time I checked, it was Boughton who, due to his decreasing of the educational budget in 2010, forced the accelerated closing of Mill Ridge Intermediate School.
Hmm...the last time I checked, it was under Boughton's leadership when it came to educational performance, Danbury High School received a failing grade.
Yesterday, the The Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now (ConnCAN) released their 2010 School Rankings and when it comes to High School performance, the City of Danbury is an embarrassment.
Out of the 164 high schools in the state of Connecticut, ConnCAN ranks Danbury High 125 with only 30 percent of the students meeting state goals across all subjects (a drop of 2 percent from 2009).
Hmm...the last time I checked, under Boughton's leadership, when it came to educational performance, most elementary and secondary schools in the city received a average of failing grade.
...and don't get me started on the High School dropout rate in the city.
It isn't like Lynn Taborsak doesn't know these things (you know, the mayoral candidate whose husband is on the Board of Education).
I don't know what I'm more excited about:
- Taborsak going after Boughton on his history of being dishonest with the residents of Danbury (now that's gonna to be FUN),
- Warren Levy explaining his LONG record of criticizing the Republican Party and Boughton's mayoral record,
- Michael Esposito explaining his Richter Park problem (which resulted in him not being placed on the Democratic city Council ticket two years ago out of concerns that the Republicans would being up the issue)...
I could go on and on but why spoil the surprises...it's only July.
One on one with Lynn Taborsak
Time: 5:49 PM
James Edmund Dyer: 1946-2011
Time: 3:59 PM
RIP to the man who transformed Danbury to the modern city of today...
It's Taborsak time
Time: 8:56 PM
I'll post my video interview with Taborsak soon...
LIVE VIDEO STREAM: Danbury Democratic Town Committee Caucus
Time: 5:24 PM
Today, members of the Danbury Democratic Town Committee will pick their candidates for the 2011 municipal elections.
I'll be providing a live video stream of the event from City Hall starting at 7PM.
Questions answered tonight
Time: 11:00 AM
1. There is a candidate for mayor.
2. My lips are sealed.
3. I'll be providing a live video stream of the Democratic caucus TONIGHT where the candidate for mayor will be announced.
4. If the rumors are true, a candidate for mayor is the last thing Boughton should be worried about...in fact, if the rumors are true, maybe our dishonest mayor should be consulting an attorney.
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