Easements Slow Sale Of McCulloch Property in Old Lyme

Nearly three weeks after National Trails Day, when the Open Spaces Commission had originally planned to lead a hike across town, not just the hike (there is not yet a complete trail), but also the sale of the McCulloch Farm property is delayed. “We are pushing for next Friday for a closing,” said Amanda Blair, co-chair of the Open Spaces Commission in Old Lyme at the monthly meeting on June 14. In a later email, Blair explained that “this is a very complex real estate transaction with many people, organizations involved. This said, these easements are a minor issue.” The

More

Beaches Residents to Old Lyme: Let us Get to Work

//

OLD LYME — Three chartered beach communities, each with their own Water Pollution Control Authority, say they are ready to move ahead with building sewers but have been delayed by the Town of Old Lyme’s failure to provide timely zoning variances and easements. In a meeting at the CT Examiner office on Thursday, Scott Boulanger of Miami Beach Association, Frank Noe of Old Colony Beach Club Association and Dede DeRosa of Old Lyme Shores Beach Association, who are members of their respective WPCAs, said they needed the town to provide a variance for the installation of a pump station either

More

Letter: “Slim down your waste”

/

While it is vitally important that our municipal, state and federal government agencies work aggressively on environmental protection acts, our individual behavior and responsible approach to waste management is imperative. We must all learn to trim a little off of our waste, little by little, every day. Small changes can make a big difference over time.

More

Hotelier Mallory Details Mystic Seaport Hotel Plan

/

MYSTIC — Mystic Seaport Museum announced plans Thursday to demolish its Latitude 41° Restaurant & Tavern and construct a 20-25 room hotel with a restaurant and event space on the property’s 1.36-acre parcel that fronts the Mystic River at 105 Greenmanville Ave. “It’s essentially replacing the building that’s there in terms of its size and scale. The current building is around 24,000 square feet and that’s essentially about the size of the new building, but instead of being on the road it will be closer to the water,” said Charles Mallory, founder and CEO of Greenwich Hospitality Group, which will

More

State Agrees to Pay Larger Share of Benefits in Move to Preserve the State Trooper Program

IN THE REGION — Beginning in fiscal year 2020, the state will pick up 50 percent of the fringe benefit costs of resident state troopers, allowing small towns dependent on the program to limit further cost increases. “Small towns are thrilled that the budget addresses longstanding concerns regarding the Resident State Trooper program, which is critical to protecting public safety in the state’s smaller towns,” said Betsy Gara, the executive director of Connecticut’s Council of Small Towns (COST). “Unfortunately, costs for the program were increasing every year, in large part due to outrageous fringe benefit costs. The budget requires the

More

Regional Government Gets its Own Budget Line

/

“Previously our funding has been a line item in the Office of Policy and Management’s budget. Now it is in legislation,” said James Butler, the executive director for the Southeastern Connecticut Council of Government (SECCOG). “It will be harder to zero it out or eliminate it now that it is in legislation.”

More

Formica and Carney Host Open House in Old Lyme

/

Speaking off-the-cuff and from a Senate Republican handout based on information provided by the nonpartisan Office of Legislative Research, Formica and Carney said that the state would end the legislative session with a $458 million deficit, a number of regressive tax increases on the horizon to fill in the gap, and the question of tolls deferred to a special session sometime this summer.

More

Budget Language Adds Flexibility For School Savings

//

IN THE REGION — Between 2007 and 2017, the total public primary and secondary school enrollment in Connecticut dropped by 46,110 students, a decline of 8 percent. Essex, Deep River and Old Saybrook all have seen much greater losses with 32, 16 and 12 percent respectively. None of these declines were previously considered drastic enough to merit an exemption from the state Minimum Budget Requirement (MBR) – a law that prohibits most school districts in Connecticut from spending less on education than in the previous fiscal year. Language included in the recently passed state budget may change this. For the

More

5 Things to Know About the Library

/

When most people hear the word “library,” they think books. Rows upon rows of books. But nearly all libraries across Connecticut — including the Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library in Old Lyme — have much more to offer than just books. “The mission of the library is to be a place of continuous learning, life-long learning and exploration of ideas and interests,” said Julie Bartley, a children’s librarian in the Old Lyme. Libraries offer museum passes, online movies and — because the libraries are linked — you can even order from libraries across the state. Did you know that one library

More

Reiner Aims to Set the Table

///

With thousands of hires expected at Electric Boat in the coming decade, Jon Reiner, Director of Planning and Development for the Town of Groton, describes his work as “setting the table” for investment in housing, business opportunities and redevelopment of older buildings and neighborhoods. Reiner, who was hired by the town in 2014, said his focus has been on finding out what Groton residents want and shaping the town’s future through marketing and zoning tools that attract the right kind of investment.

More

Waterford Considers Loosening FEMA Compliance

“What we’re finding is if residents have to replace a roof, say, on a smaller beach cottage that was converted to a full-time residence over the years, they can get to the 50 percent quickly, so we’re trying to find a reasonable balance,” she said. “We want to make sure we’re not being too lax and also make sure people can reasonably maintain their homes and the fabric of the neighborhood and community.”

More

Mentoring Lyme-Old Lyme Children

More than forty children between the middle and elementary schools in Old Lyme meet with a mentor each week, a program that has helped encourage better attendance, higher grades, engagement and enthusiasm at school for these students.

More

Restoring Habitat on the Lower Connecticut River

Standing in the middle of Lord’s Cove, on the edge of the Connecticut River, you can see thousands of salt march bulrushes poking up through the muck everywhere, a plant that has appeared on the Connecticut and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services Rare Species lists for more than 40 years.

More

Breaking Ground on Affordable Housing in New London

/

“What this represents to us is not only saving a structure that many, many people in the city have memories of coming to... We have nearly 1,000 units of housing in the planning stages and at least 20 percent of that is going to be affordable housing. It’s very, very important going forward that we provide the housing for all the socioeconomic levels that make up this great city,” New London Mayor Mike Passero said.

More

Letter: Northeast Rail Corridor – Still Alive?

That was, at least, until Connecticut’s junior Senator Chris Murphy spoke before a crowd of two hundred at the Greater Mystic Chamber of Commerce on May 31 in Groton. He argued, “…if we continue to let the northeast rail corridor atrophy, then Connecticut’s economy will atrophy.” “Every year,” he went on, “we always argue whether we’re going to give Amtrak $1.2 billion or $1.4 billion when you need $100 billion for this type of project.” The first step, he said, is to modernize commercial rail infrastructure in eastern Connecticut. He likes, he admitted, “big ideas.”

More

With Sewers Exceeding Capacity, Mystic Searches for Solutions

//

“We’re doing the study to find out how clean water is getting into the system,” Nettleton said. “Inflow is the flow getting into the system by sump pumps in basements. Infiltration is flow getting in through cracks in the pipes and leaking manholes.” Nettleton noted that sump pumps, which are illegal in the town, are a “big problem” in Mystic. The problem is commonplace in many communities, officials said. Read more here

More

Shoreline Food Pantries Consider Split

In March, SSKP informed the churches in Old Lyme that they would be temporarily closing the food pantry and then permanently closing it due to the high percentage of individuals outside of the region that were utilizing the pantry’s services. The board of SSKP has since rolled back that decision, but negotiations about how the two organizations can continue in partnership are ongoing.

More

Murphy, Reiner, Meiser on Growing Southeast Connecticut

/

At the “Groton Business Update” event, Murphy spoke to about 200 chamber members at the Mystic Marriott Hotel and Spa in Groton. He was joined by speakers Jonathan Reiner, director of planning and development for the Town of Groton, and Dan Meiser, Stonington-based restaurateur and chair of the Connecticut Restaurant Association.

More

Editorial: DEEP Weighs in on Stonington Development

/

Two months ago, the town of Stonington provided the Connecticut of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) with a zoning map amendment for the proposed Smiler’s Wharf development in downtown Mystic for review. Two months later — the day of a key hearing of the Planning and Zoning Commission — Brian Thompson, Director of DEEP’s Land & Water Resources Division replied. The four-and-a-half page letter, though late in coming, is by any reading, damning. Thompson concludes that the project — which recently received the unanimous approval of Stonington’s Economic Development Commission (EDC) — adversely affects the “water-dependent use” of the site,

More

Old Saybrook Faces Tough Choices on Septic System Pollution

/

More than 60 percent of the nitrogen load flowing from the Oyster River into Indian Harbor off of Old Saybrook is from septic systems, according to a study by Marine Scientist Jamie Vaudrey from the University of Connecticut. Part of the problem is that the soil in Old Saybrook is poorly suited for filtering nitrogen. There also simply isn’t enough of it to provide sufficient buffering.

More

Regional Leaders Greet Minimum Wage Increase

On May 28, Gov. Ned Lamont fulfilled a campaign promise and signed a bill to raise the minimum wage in Connecticut. As of Oct. 1, 2019, the minimum wage will increase from $10.10 to $11.00 per hour. By June 1, 2023, the minimum wage in Connecticut will reach $15 per hour.

More

1861 Flag Flies over Lyme Street Parade

Old Lyme — Raised aloft on a sail mast improvised as sturdy dowel, a 13-feet-tall by 18-feet-wide American flag with 34 stars fluttered in the breeze on Lyme Street as the Memorial Day parade streamed by on Monday morning. Constructed in 1861, the flag belongs to Polly Merrill, of Old Lyme, who inherited it from her uncle, Frederic DuBois, in the 1980s. DuBois made a tradition of displaying the flag on Independence Day in front of his home in Des Moines, Iowa, and was photographed with the flag flying from a rigged-up clothesline for an article in the Ames Tribune

More

Disability-friendly Coffee House Opens in Deep River

“90 percent of our staff have a diagnosed disability,” said Jane Moen, the executive director of A Little Compassion, a nonprofit that strives to change the lives of young adults with autism, intellectual and developmental disabilities for the better. “We have a number of folks with autism, developmental delays, anxiety and depression.” Moen also manages The Nest.

More