12:54pm–#Trumbull CT– A man was electrocuted while in a room at the Trumbull Marriott at 180 Hawley Lane according to radio reports. Please note that the word electrocute means “injure or kill someone by electric shock”. Many viewers post that it means the person died which is not the case in this incident nor in the definition.
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#HARTFORD, CT – Governor Dannel P. Malloy and Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) Commissioner James P. Redeker today released the findings of a study on the impact of widening and improving both the western and eastern portions of Interstate 95 in Connecticut, and outlined the consequences of failing to act.
Currently, peak morning and evening congestion on the highway accounts for 54 million hours of delay and costs $1.2 billion in lost time annually. The study finds that limited, strategic widening will yield major benefits and can be constructed within existing CTDOT property. The Governor’s revenue proposal – which includes a seven-cent increase in the gas tax over four years and the implementation of electronic tolling – would allow for these investments to go forward.
“Anyone who has traveled on I-95 during rush hour understands the urgency of addressing our congestion problems,” Governor Malloy said. “It hurts our economy. Every day, commuters spend hours in traffic and businesses face unnecessary burdens in getting products to market. The report released today outlines a commonsense path toward reducing congestion and improving safety on one of our busiest and most important roads.”
“CTDOT is excited to announce that after a detailed study of options for relieving congestion on I-95, we are able to report a stunning set of findings,” Commissioner Redeker said. “For years, the accepted thinking was that the only way to relieve congestion on I-95 was to add a lane in each direction from border to border. After a detailed study of alternatives, we have determined that strategic, directional widening on I-95 between New Haven and New York can significantly reduce congestion and can be built within existing CTDOT right of way. Similar strategic, localized investments can also reduce congestion between New Haven and Rhode Island. These findings indicate that we can achieve congestion relief through strategic and much less costly investments far sooner than previously thought. In addition, the return on these investments would far exceed the cost of the projects. Connecticut deserves this rational, sensible and cost-effective investment to support our economic growth.”
Among other findings, the report notes that just one of the projects proposed – adding one northbound lane between exits 19 and 28 – would reduce travel time from the New York border to Bridgeport from 63 minutes – if no improvements are made – to 41 minutes during weekday afternoon peak times. However, the Governor warned that without legislative action this session to shore up the Special Transportation Fund (STF), this type of investment will be impossible.
“These improvements shouldn’t be seen as optional,” Governor Malloy added. “But without new revenue to stabilize the Special Transportation Fund, critical projects like the I-95 widening will not be possible. I put forward a reasonable proposal last month, and I look forward to working with the legislature this year to find real, long-term transportation solutions.”
The I-95 widening projects were included in the $4.3 billion in projects canceled or suspended by the CTDOT last month because of long-term failure to adequately fund the STF.
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#Hartford CT– In celebration of Black History Month, African American women legislators in the Connecticut General Assembly nominated Bridgeport’s own Margaret E. Morton, the first African American woman to sit in the state legislature, to the CT Women’s Hall of Fame. During the press conference, legislators and Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman also highlighted the contributions of African American women in Connecticut and emphasize the need for more women of color in government. Bridgeport’s City Hall Annex at 999 Broad Street is named in honor of her.
Margaret E. Morton, the first African-American woman to sit in the state legislature, to the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame. Joined by Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman and New Haven Mayor Toni N. Harp, they also emphasized the need for more women of color in government.
“Margaret Morton laid the ground-work for me to stand where I am today— the third black woman ever to be elected to the Connecticut Senate,” Sen. Moore said. “Margaret knew that being the only black woman in the legislature meant she had an added responsibility to serve as a mentor to the men and women of color who would come after her. She broke down barriers and became a leader at the State Capitol. She is a true role model to women across the state.”
“It is my honor to stand in support of the late Margaret E. Morton’s nomination to the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame for her extraordinary service in state government and her commitment to advancing the priorities of our communities of color,” Rep. Miller said. “Ms. Morton’s accomplishments are even more laudable today, because back in 1972 when she was elected to the House of Representatives, being a woman of color running for office was not as common as it is in this day and age. Her resolve, integrity and dedication during her service still inspire us to keep serving with pride and honor as we continue working toward a better future for our constituencies.”
“The late Margaret Morton was a phenomenal role model for all women in the Connecticut General Assembly. She was a force to be reckoned with, who always exercised her power on behalf of her constituents and the community at-large. No matter how massive the mountain, Margaret Morton always found a way to make moves that redefined history,” said Rep. Porter. “While this Queen Matriarch put down the roots and carried the torch for a more equitable future, I feel a personal calling in my spirit to carry on her legacy, and that calling has only been further solidified in discovering that we both were sworn in at the age of 48 with a passion for people and a tremendous love for God and community.”
“I had the honor and privilege of serving with Margaret. She was a powerful woman and legislator, one who set a high standard and served as an example for all of us,” said Lt. Governor Wyman. “Her nomination to the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame speaks to her accomplishments and her legacy. Margaret’s story and her work continue to inspire—offering the next generations a reason to get involved in government and public service, to run for office, and to make their voices heard.”
“I’m quite sure no one in this room second-guesses the value of role models in the development of Connecticut’s future leaders, but in the African-American community, there’s a dearth of outstanding role models because they were omitted from so many history lessons and overlooked when positions of prominence became vacant,” Mayor Harp said. “The pattern of omission and oversight is only amplified when the conversation is about African-American women, so those of us gathered today want to provide as much momentum as possible for Senator Morton’s induction.”
12:33pm–#Bridgeport CT– For tenth grader Rafael Rodriguez it was another day walking home from Bassick High School. But today it was different as he neared Cottage Street and smelled smoke. He discovered smoke coming out of the 3rd floor and immediately called 911. As a result, the firefighters were quickly on the scene and was able to keep the smoky fire contained to the third floor. Firefighters conducted two searches and found no one in the building. There were no reported injuries. The photo was contributed by Rafael taken just moments after calling in the fire.
How about some likes for local hero Rafael Rodgriguez? Way to go!