May 31, 2012

Hearing for Murderer David Messenger's release from CVH Friday

The Middletown Press is reporting that there will be a public hearing held for David Messenger who is being "treated" at CVH on Friday June 1, 2012. http://www.middletownpress.com/articles/2012/05/31/news/doc4fc6b216e8b80096403697.txt?viewmode=fullstory

This hearing is a continuation of a hearing that was held in November, where the  board in control of Messenger's treatment found him mentally fit to leave the Connecticut Valley Hospital grounds with "supervision" by staff  to attend outpatient treatment in Hartford and Middletown. Upon treatment completion would eventually be allowed to stay at a resident of an outpatient facility.

Messenger "allegedly" beat to death his pregnant wife Heather Messenger with a fire poker and a piece of wood back in 1998 while his five year old child was present at the scene.
Messenger was acquitted of first-degree manslaughter by reason of mental illness committed to Connecticut Valley Hospital in 2001. His "treatment" is said to be 20 years, and the actual charge is manslaughter.

As you recall, Messenger suited the City of Middletown and then Mayor Giulaino for infringement on his First Amendment rights when he petitioned for release to attend Church Services at First Congregational Church in Middletown. Pastor John C. Hall (Also chair of the Jonas Center) speaks of visiting Messenger here in a published sermon, but also concludes it is not up to the Church to decide Messenger's release: http://www.firstchurchucc.org/sermons/s030216.html
Hall  states in his sermon regarding Messenger: ""He appears (to me at least) fully recovered.  He’s on no medication.  And even though these memories and experiences are still quite painful he is willing to speak quite openly about them."

 The suit was dismissed. Giuliano was quoted by the local press as saying if Messenger were to be released by the state Psychiatric Safety Review Board, Giuliano would see that a police officer was "stapled to his butt at all times." Mayor Drew failed to attend the hearing last November, citing something about no one telling him to go or something, but issued a letter afterwards stating he did not support Messenger's release. Later Drew did damage control by writing a letter with some strong big boy words protesting another scheduled release of  patient Kenneth Ruggles who also had a violent past in attempts to take the attention off the fact he only acted after the fact in the case of Messenger. Middletown City Attorney Tim Lynch will be at the hearing as well as the victim's family. Messenger is entitled to a hearing for release every two years by law. Is it just us, or does it seem like we always hear about violent mentally insane murders going into CVH but we as citizens never hear when they come out? Is there just an infinite supply of beds there? If our safety is in jeopardy, as citizens, we have a right to know.

May 30, 2012

United Way Young Leaders in Politics Panel Thursday At Wesleyan


The United Way Young Leaders' Society "Young Leaders in Politics" panel is being held Thursday May 31 2012 at the Daniels Family Commons, Usdan Center  on Wesleyan Campus.

There will be a networking reception from 5:30 to 6:15, and the panel will begin promptly at 6:15. Jeff McDonald from Wesleyan will welcome attendees, then introduce Justin Carbonella, Young Leaders' Society Chair. Justin will have some brief remarks and then introduce Jeff Stoecker, our panel moderator.  Tomorrow's panel consists of BOE member Ryan Kennedy, Treasurer Quentin Phipps, Representative Matt Lesser, and P& Z Commissioner Molly Salafia.
 The event is being held to generate some discussion about different ways to get involved in the political process, whether at the local, state, or even national level - not just by running for office, but by working on campaigns and/or policy issues.  At approximately 7:00 pm we will open up to the audience for Q & A. The event is not a debate on issues or platforms, just a way to motivate and encourage more political involvement, regardless of affiliation.


Middletown Animal Charity Catales on Tv Friday!

Connecticut Association to Assure Love and
 End Suffering is a grass roots animal charity
 started in Middltown
This is Spencer, he lives at Catales
CATALES will be on TV!! If you have Comcast, and live in Middletown, Portland, Middlefield, Cromwell, or East Hampton, be sure to toon in LIVE on Channel 15 Friday, June 1st from 8:00-9:00 p.m!! Catales will be live on The Variety Hour with host William Wilson with 3 special cats. Please spread the word! Please call in LIVE with questions!


CATALES, Inc. (Connecticut Association Assure Love and End Suffering) is a non-profit no-kill organization consisting of volunteers dedicated to improving and enriching the lives of homeless cats and kittens that was started by founder Deb Bagley right here in Middletown, CT.  http://www.catales.org/


The next Catales event is: 6/30/12 - CATALES Annual Tag Sale-
Location: 393 Bow Ln, Middletown, CT 
Time: 9:00am - 2:00pm (no early birds please)
If you have items, in good condition, that you want to donate towards the tag sale please contact info@catales.org 
This is Peppermint, a cat available for
 adoption who lives at Catales.
 He is super serious about
 folks watching the show Friday.
This is Billy. He does
 not live at Catales, but
he would also like folks
 to watch the show Friday.


May 29, 2012

Go to the Mayor's Ball, get a TV!

With all the things missed in this budget it should be
called a "fudget" And your taxes are still going up.
Mayor Daniel T. Drew is reminding all members of the community that the seventh annual Mayoral Benefit Gala, to benefit Amazing Grace Food Pantry and Middletown High Goes to the Symphony will be held on Saturday, June 2, 20l2 at 7:00 pm. at the Middletown Elks Lodge. 


In Dan Drew's own words: "Above all, I want to make Middletown’s government honest. For years, the city has suffered through decisions made in the best interests of municipal contractors and private developers who have political or familial connections. In the meantime, the middle-class working men and women of Middletown have seen their taxes rise, their property values fall, and they are receiving fewer services for their money. In March of 2010, the incumbent Republican mayor used the Kleen Energy plant disaster as an excuse to purchase (with tax funds) a 42-inch LCD television for his personal office and have it mounted to the wall – presumably to monitor news and weather following the disaster. Another television was purchased for the lounge area outside the mayor’s office. Upon taking office in November, I will immediately end these types of practices and I’ll auction both televisions for charity at the 2012 Mayor’s Ball."  source here: https://secure.democracyforamerica.com/campaigns/4164-drew-2011

FACT: 1. The televisions were purchased with grant money from Homeland Security and cost the tax payer's of Middletown  "0". 


FACT 2. The Democratic Council voted down each of the Republican Mayor's budgets that would have either kept taxes the same or reduced them. This year, Mayor Drew drafted a budget giving himself a increase in allocation for a cell phone, ipad, and grant writer position for the Mayor's office. Drew has also raised taxes, yet managed to cut from the budget funds providing bus transportation for school age children to Park & Rec run summer day camps. In fact Park & Rec does enough funds to keep all of its parks operational this summer, yet, Councilmember Todd Berch & Drew lobbyist buddy is gunning for a public dog park.


FACT 3.  If Drew wants to talk about rising taxes and cuts in service he should look no further than his own budget.  Money for the arts & summer concert series and costs associated with the show mobile were also cut from the budget. To be reinstated, the money must come from the general fund, which the Common Council votes on in June.


FACT 4.  This spring Middletown High Band students, the Band Booster Club, and parent's of students fund-raised all the money it took to send over 200 band students to Disney World; over $1,000 per student. No money came from taxpayers. And the students did a fantastic job winning big in the Magic Kingdom. Drew stuck taxpayers with a $5,000 bill for a secret trip to China and public has yet to see any report of this trip or benefits to citizen's and job growth. Great example our leader has provided.


FACT 5: Honest government. Drew blew $2,500 on an architect to draw up plans of a City Hall addition to house a proposed Senior Center after the project was already being developed by architects that won the public bid to design a renovation of Eckersley Hall to house the project. These plans never saw the light of day. Drew then tried to damage control and claim he supported Eckersley Hall project from the get-go. Dishonest?


It it seems the budget is a little "fudged" and not completely thought out, but what can we say Drew is a busy guy out shaking all those hands & getting his picture taken. Later in his self-written article, Drew asks voters to "hold me accountable,"ok so we are! Where is the missing $1. million from the BOE? Will the tv still be auctioned despite it not being an expense born by taxpayers? Will this campaign promise regarding the tv's be retracted? What else is this fudget under funding?

May 26, 2012

Memorial Day: Remembrance & Welcome Home Soldiers!

On Memorial Day we remember those who gave their lives to defend our freedoms. It is also a time to welcome home those soldiers whose tours of duty in foreign lands are completed and who return now to their families and loved ones.




May 25, 2012

Middletown Mechanics Ready to Build New Jet Engine



Pratt & Whitney has announced that a good portion of the state-of-the-art geared turbofan jet engines for the Neo Airbus 320 and other planes will be built here in Middletown. The so called PurePower jet engines are already certified for flight in the Bombardier C-Series aircraft.

According to Hartford Courant:
Pratt & Whitney has decided to assemble some, and maybe the majority, of its engines for the Airbus A320 neo model — the largest booking of business by far for its new geared turbofan design — at its Middletown plant, an unexpected decision that was critical for preserving Pratt factory jobs in Connecticut. 
Factory workers have been waiting anxiously to find out if Middletown mechanics would be given the chance to assemble the PurePower engine, the model at the heart of Pratt's commercial engines future. 
"I've been after them for the last two contracts to give us some kind of inkling where they were going to build this thing," said Dave Durbin Sr., president of the Middletown local of the Machinists union, who was informed of the decision Thursday morning. 

More about these new jet engines:


                                             Pratt & Whitney PurePower Geared Turbofan Engine
In most jet engines (more properly called turbofans), the fan that pulls air into the engine is directly linked to the compressor that squeezes that air down for combustion, so they have to turn at the same rate. By placing gears between the compressor and the fan, decoupling the two, the Pure Power engine allows for a more efficient arrangement: a big, slow fan shoving air into a small, fast turbine. The result is a shorter, lighter engine that can produce the same amount of power as a larger conventional turbofan, while burning 12 to 15 percent less fuel and emitting 35 percent less carbon dioxide. Pratt & Whitney finished ground- and air-testing of the engine this year, and the first of them will go on the Bombardier C-Series jet starting in 2013.
Source: http://www.popsci.com/bown/2009/product/pratt-amp-whitney-pure-power-geared-turbofan-engine


Further reading: A Pratt & Whitney Flyover to Demonstrate New Engine

May 24, 2012

Mayor Drew Breaks Historic Record! Shafts Local Parents & Kids

t
Drew to head to moon to lobby for Middletown Lunar Colony.
 In other news, transportation to  Park & Rec Youth Summer Camps cut
 in Mayor's adopted budget. Need a ride for your child?
Call Mayor's office to schedule pick up in Mayor Mobile.
It is fast approaching the 1 month mark for when Mayor Drew secretly went to China on Middletown's dime and behalf to secure trade with our far east ally. Upon his return Councilmember Pessina pressed Drew for a full report about the trip in order for tax payers to fully understand what they would be paying for and how his interactions with Chinese business consultants would benefit them. Drew, at the following Council meeting stated he was too jet lagged to have completed the report. It has been 1 month, and no report; yet Drew has found time to do more important things especially went it involved having his picture taken.  Drew has found time to pass out 17 separate accolades & awards  to locals in that time, showcase Rep. Rosa DeLaura around Middletown on two separate but well documented occasions, pull together a half baked budget that raises taxes yet cuts things like bus transportation to Park & Rec youth summer camps, & march in a parade during his recovery from apparently the longest case of jet lag ever on record! Mayor Drew is starting do things that rival the supernatural powers of Kim Jong  Li. The Insider would like to wish the mayor a speedy recovery so he can get back to his lobbying in Hartford  & DC as well as welcome Chinese businessmen who will jump start Middletown's economy single handedly during their visit on June 9th.
By the way Mr. Drew, at the Insider we think you owe an explanation to the 200 families of Middletown workers who are being laid off today at Pratt & Whitney and how your budget  & China trip & tax increase will help them. Representative Len Suzio made statements today that the Dept. of Labor should do all it can to help those laid off and offered to assist. The Insider will be thinking of those families today as who will no doubt be making tough financial sacrifices to make ends meet, our hearts go out to them.

May 23, 2012

Local Republican Ladies to Challenge Reps. Serra & Lesser & other Fireworks

Local Callie Grippo (R), candidate for the 33rd
District to challenge Joe Serra (D)
Energy was high last night at the Middletown Republican Town Committee last night.
Councilmember Phil Pessina gave a enthusiastic speech endorsing Councilwoman Deborah Kleckowski who has put her hat in the ring to challenge State House Representative Matt Lesser (D) for the 100th District in this fall's election. Not present, but equally impassioned local woman & previous local BOE candidate for the 2011 November elections, Callie Grippo will challenge long time living relic State House Representative Joe Serra (D) for his seat in the 33rd district. Like Red Rosa, the Insider thinks that Serra has been in office far too long, and pretty soon will be declared furniture at the capitol unless he breathes some life into his elected position. Use it or loose it, so fellas, prepare to loose it.
It seemed the ladies of the MRTC have a newly ignited fire in their bellies that was also evident when it came time for Janice Giofriddo to defend her seat as Republican Registrar of Voters against challenger and former Councilmember David Bauer. Bauer gave a speech making it clear he felt whom ever was to hold the position should be able to justly defend the law regarding voting and cited an incident that happened this past fall where Rep. Lesser and Rep. Serra, along with Councilman Tom Serra physically took from the office unfinished drafts of voting districts and altered them without input from the opposing party. Bauer indicated new laws allowing same day registration who bring particular challenges to the office of Registrar and he was up to the task of those challenges. Gionfriddo, who defended the original districting that would save tax payers money which the Democrats felt was irrelevant, before the Common Council after the map incident had occurred, gave a statement saying she was up to the task of working with the newly appointed Democratic registrar and whatever challenges that that might bring. Giofriddo stated that the mood in the office had changed, and the new regime had brought very hostile and partisan views into what by law is supposed operate as  a politically neutral office, but she would not back down in following the oath she took 14 years ago when she became Registrar for the Republicans. Voting was done by paper ballot, and Gionfriddo kept her seat 34-9. Bauer congratulated Gionfriddo on her win and pledged his support.
By the power of Bauer
Tensions at the meeting once again surfaces when Juan Montalvo asked Councilmembers Phil Pessina and Joe Bibisi to explain their reasoning for not supporting the draft of the City of Middletown Budget that they, and Republican Councilmembers Deborah Klekowski and Linda Salafia had drafted, signed, and presented as an alternative to the Common Council at the public budget hearing May 2. Earlier Bauer referenced his confusion over the dissent of the two councilmen against their own budget. The alternate budget that would have not increased taxes, was defeated 10 to 2 with Pessina and Bibisi ultimately voting against their own suggested amendments & for Mayor Drew & the Democrats' tax increase. Councilman Pessina gave an impassioned speech that he felt increased funding for the BOE even though they have no provided a line-item budget as promised was important for impoverished children to get proper educations. Montalvo pointed out that BOE funding, was only a small portion of the budget, and why had the councilman not asked for a motion to  amend and discuss on the matter instead of simply voting down the budget that the Republican caucus had crafted. Council member Bibisi did not comment. Former Councilman Earle Roberts also commented on his strong disapproval over the tax increase and dissent of the two councilmen. Roberts was the last Republican council member to draft an amended budget to challenge the proposed budget by the democratic majority. 
Wayne Winsley (R), candidate to take on
 Rosa DeLauro for Congress
Before the close of the meeting, Wayne Winsley introduced himself as the Republican selected to be the candidate for the 3rd Congressional Seat. He is taking on long time incumbent Red Rosa DeLauro in the 2012 fall election. http://waynewinsleyforcongress.com/
Link to the article about Kleckowski & Grippo challenging  Serra and Lesser can be found on the Patch here: http://middletown-ct.patch.com/articles/city-republicans-women-to-vie-for-house-seats#video-10029383
Below is more information regarding credentials of Candidate Deborah Kleckowski:
Real Wesleyan Grad & local Deborah Kleckowski,
candidate for the 33rd District,
challenges Matt Lesser (D) (attended Wes, did not graduate)
Nomination for State Representative      May 22, 2012
Deborah Kleckowski
Objective:  Build Prosperity
 Key issues:  Employment/Economy:  Implement Cap on the Gas Tax.  Fully fund PILOT (Payment in lieu of taxes) for Middletown due to number of state facilities. Halt projects such as the New Britain Bus Way(cost prohibitive and addition of state employees-bus drivers), eliminate 15 million to Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun in tax credits, promote private purchases of hospitals such as UConn Hospital vs. State Funding (Hartford Hospital was interested in the purchase of UConn Hospital), Eliminate State funding of projects such as the First Five i.e. Jackson Labs, eliminate increase of taxes on business which discourage users such as Hotel tax increase, nail salons, hair salons and massage.  Decrease spending, merge departments and eliminate commissions. And repeal Executive Order of forced unionization of Childcare workers and Personal Aides.
Education:  Repeal of Dream Act which allows illegal residents to attend colleges and pay the “in-state” tuition, revise state statute that requires municipalities fund the Board of Education at no less than the year prior, implement new law which allows for the Boards of Education to be a separate taxing district, re-instate first generation/low income educational programs.  Ensure seclusion rooms are safe for students and staff.
Public Safety:  Reinstate the death penalty, fully fund Emergency Management throughout the state (up to date safety gear and training), Repeal Transvestite/Transsexual bathroom bill.
Elections:  Eliminate same day election registration.
Government Transparency:  No votes after midnight and public hearing should be held at night not during the day to allow the public to attend and not special interests groups.
Personal/Family:   Raised in Middletown, attended Middletown schools, two younger sisters, married
with two children.

Past Experience:   Chair-New Britain Health Commission, member Youth Service Commission, Deputy Finance Director for a state-wide campaign. Middletown:   P&Z   Alternate and Regular member, Common Council 2009-current

Highlights:  Updated By-laws for P&Z, Brought to the forefront labor disputes between 466-BOE. Fought for an won sick days and pay for ill city employee denied by BOE Business Manager, initiated sick bank policy for City, strongly encouraged the resignation of the former school superintendent, secured bench at Price Choppers for Senior Citizens and other residents who take the bus, initiated: purchase of communication devices in helmets for City Fire, traffic study on Tyron Street, and South Main and Highland traffic study to curtail accidents/deaths.  Ardent supporter of Veterans, Public Safety, Education and the Arts.

Education:  Graduate of Eastern CT ST University-BA, Certificate of Management and Advance
Management Central CT ST University and Graduate of Wesleyan University, MALS
Employment:      Adjunct Instructor Middlesex Community College, Director Middlesex Community                                              College-College Career Pathways program (Tech Prep), Meriden Schools Vocational Facilitator, Interim Director/Associate Director Wesleyan University Upward Bound/ConnCap program.

May 18, 2012

Republican Delegate Convention Today In Hartford

The folks at the Insider would like to wish all the candidates and delegates- including those from the Middletown Republican Town Committee best of luck today at the nominating convention today in Hartford.
http://www.ctgop.org/2012/05/2012-state-gop-convention-
hartford/


St. Luke's Offers Transportation for Vets to VA

Veterans now offered free transportation to VA medical facilities. This is wonderful news. As a veteran myself, not owning a personal automobile, I often find it problematic to get to medical appointments at the West Haven or Newington VA medical facilities. For example, traveling from Middletown to Newington requires a MAT bus ride to Main Street, a Ct Transit bus to Hartford, and then a transfer on CT Transit to VA Newington. This can take several hours.

Just in time according to Laura Fait reporting at Middletown Patch;

St. Luke’s Eldercare Services has initiated a new program, Vets4Vets, which will guarantee that every veteran who requests a ride from our Agency, and who lives in St. Luke’s eight town service area which includes Middletown, Middlefield, Cromwell, Durham, Haddam, East Haddam, East Hampton and Portland, will receive safe, comfortable and reliable free transportation to West Haven or Newington. 

St. Luke’s has received a donation from The Executive Auto Group of a seven-passenger van to be used expressly for this purpose. Local veteran groups have agreed to assist this effort by providing volunteer drivers. This free service will also be available to families who wish to accompany the rider for support or to act as “care givers” during long and/or painful procedures.

Call 860-347-5661 for more information or to make a donation to support Vets4Vets. 



Pictured left to right are Larry Riley, veteran and St. Luke’s Eldercare Services board member; Scott Orsini of Executive Auto Group, St. Luke's boad member Joseph Santaniello of Attention to Detail; Diane Cummings, executive director of St. Luke’s Eldercare Services; Phil Cacciola, veteran and St. Luke’s Eldercare Services board member; and Bill Currlin, veteran and St. Luke’s Eldercare Services board member.

May 17, 2012

A Visit to the New Community Health Center

Today The Middletown Insider takes you inside Middletown's new Community Health Center Facility.

I've been having quite a bit of dental work done at our Community Health Center here in Middletown. Meanwhile, we have all been watching the construction of the new home for CHC on Main Street in the city's North End. The facility opened at last on May 14 and today I had my first dental experience in the brand new, state of the art, building. Words cannot adequately describe the delicious sense of space, color, and light that awaits the visitor upon entering this building. The choice of colors and furnishings in the public spaces made this visitor, and patient, feel most comfortable and welcome, somehow creating a sense that perhaps visiting the dentist  might be, for once, a pleasant experience!

More information about Community Health Center Inc.

                                                                Ground Floor Lobby


                                                                  Ground Floor Lobby 


                                                                   Third Floor Waiting Area


                                                                      Interior Stairwell

                                                                 The View Down Rapallo Towards the River from Third Floor 

May 15, 2012

United Way Young Leaders Forum with Local Elected Officials



Join the United Way Young Leaders Society for a special evening featuring young leaders from the Greater Middletown area talking about public service, civic involvement, and the importance of young people taking part in the political process to make positive change.

Participants will discuss their own successes and challenges as young leaders and answer questions related to the issues young people face in public service. Our Moderator for the night will be Jeff Stoecker, NBC Connecticut’s Weekend News Anchor.
3rd floor - Daniel Family CommonsRSVP ON FACEBOOK 

Confirmed Panelists will be:
- Ryan Kennedy - Middletown Board of Education
- Matt Lesser - State Representative, 100th District
- Quentin Phipps - City Treasurer, City of Middletown
- JR Romano - Director, Americans for Prosperity-Connecticut
- Molly Salafia - Planning and Zoning, City of Middletown
The event will start with a networking and cocktail reception at 5:30, followed at 6:15 with a panel discussion and Q&A. $5 suggested donation. 
Are you in?

Be sure to invite a friend (or two). It’s as easy as forwarding this email!

Click here to RSVP on Facebook, or contact Matt Plourde at United Way:

Like us on Facebook:


_______________________

Matt Plourde
Customer Relations Assistant
Middlesex United Way
Description: Description: LIVEUNITED-with-Logo-Vertical-4C

Now through June 30, 2012, Young’s Printing will donate $1 to Middlesex United Way for every new ‘Like’ we receive on Facebook. - Click here to 'Like' us now!

Town Hall Meeting Middletown with Rep. Len Suzio


May 11, 2012

The Republican's Caucus Budget Proposal Summary


                                             
We, the Republican Caucus, are all proponents of education and believe every child must have educational opportunities to succeed.  However, we also believe that the Board of Education needs time to re-evaluate their accounting practices as stated by the audit report, and to be more transparent in their disbursement of monies.  We encourage the Board of Education to implement a line-item budget as is required and practiced by all departments.
Lastly, the funding of the Pension Fund.  We propose that the Pension Fund be funded at 100%.  We request that options be investigated such as funding the Pension Fund at 125% which will allow for the absorption of medical costs of retirees.  However, we, as members of the Common Council can only recommend the funding allocation.  The actual determination of the amount of the funding to the Pension Board is solely the discretion of the Pension Board as stated in the City Charter.
The Republican Caucus recognizes there is little room to fiscally maneuver due to contractual constraints and increased costs for items such as fuel.  However, we also recognize that departments such as the Parking Department and the Building Department are avenues for revenue and revenue estimates may have been conservative.
In conclusion, the Republican Caucus pledges to work with department heads to constantly review the budget and strategies to reduce spending.  We encourage the citizens of Middletown to continue to be active in city government and we invite you to offer to the Common Council your cost saving ideas.
Thank you to all the Directors and city employees for your hard work and ingenuity as we work together to better grow our great town of Middletown.
Respectfully Submitted,

Phillip Pessina-Minority Leader
Joseph Bibisi
Deborah Kleckowski
Linda Salafia