Maybe By 2018?

Goldson: We’ve been deliberate and transparent.

Goldson: We’ve been deliberate and transparent.

Monday, June 27, 2017 - Eighteen people have applied to be New Haven’s next schools superintendent, in a process that began in 2016 and may now drag out until the end of 2017.

Board of Education member Darnell Goldson offered that update Monday night during the board’s bimonthly meeting at the L.W. Beecher Museum School of Arts & Sciences on Jewell Street.

Goldson, the board’s point person on the search process, offered the latest information that he had received from Hazard, Young, Attea and Associates, the Chicago-suburb-based executive search firm that the board hired in early June to help them find the next permanent leader of the city’s public schools.

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Neighbors Help City Plan For Vacant Lots

Harris: This is all about giving local decision making power back to local residents.

Harris: This is all about giving local decision making power back to local residents.

Monday, June 26, 2017 - When Lisa McKnight first moved to Rosette Street almost 50 years ago, her family’s and her neighbors’ yards were lush with grapevines, apple trees, pear trees, and rose bushes. Now she may get to see such splendor reappear on the long-vacant, overgrown lawn across the street from her home.

Or it may become a dog park, playground, or public plaza.

The city is getting control of that vacant Rosette Street lot and 15 others from the state Department of Transportation (DOT). And it’s asking neighbors like McKnight to help decide what to put there.

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The End of TV, The Beginning of a New Art

Judy Sirota Rosenthalphoto

Judy Sirota Rosenthalphoto

Wednesday, June 21, 2017 - The history of movies is a history of two parallel impulses: to record reality as faithfully as possible with a minimum of artifice, and to conjure illusions that look for something true beneath the real.

These are the traditions of the Lumière brothers and of Georges Méliès: of scientists documenting the movement of workers leaving a factory, and of a magician and acrobats shooting rockets into the face of a winking moon.

The End of TV, a new multimedia performance from the Chicago-based collaborative Manual Cinema, finds harmony between these two competing impulses in a show that embraces both artistry and its mechanics. It’s playing this week at the International Festival of Arts & Ideas.

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1 Labor Contract Settled

Clerkin presents Local 844 contract at Thursday night’s hearing.

Clerkin presents Local 844 contract at Thursday night’s hearing.

Friday, June 16, 2017 - A city union that represents over 400 emergency dispatchers, school security guards, and a diverse array of public administrative and clerical staff has come to a new collective bargaining agreement with the city after working without a contract for nearly two years.

During a Board of Alders Finance Committee hearing at City Hall on Thursday night, City Budget Director Joe Clerkin presented some of the key provisions of the new five-year contract between the city and AFSCME Local 884.

The local represents 411 city employees in a variety of non-managerial positions, ranging from data control clerks and accounts payable auditors in the city’s Finance Department to school security guards to 911 dispatchers.

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Dems Hammer Out 1st-Ever Issues Platform

Underwood presents platform to DTC Thursday night.

Underwood presents platform to DTC Thursday night.

Friday, June 9, 2017 - Candidates seeking the backing of Connecticut’s most influential local Democratic Party are on notice: They have some policy questions to answer.

Do they support eliminating school suspensions, expulsions, and arrests for all K – 12 students? How will they work towards ending institutionalized racism in the economy? Do they support drastically cutting the military budget and boosting public investment in airports, roads, bridges, and broadband?

The New Haven Democratic Town Committee (DTC) now has an official platform that embraces those positions, providing politicians at all levels of government with a template for the progressive causes that local Democrats support and seek to accomplish.

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“I Am Shakespeare” Reveals A Man In Two Shots

Henry Green in the new movie I AM SHAKESPEARE (2017)

Henry Green in the new movie I AM SHAKESPEARE (2017)

Friday, June 2, 2017 - Stephen Dest’s new documentary I Am Shakespeare: The Henry Green Story is a reminder that the full history and power of cinema, a 120-year-old art form uniquely equipped to inspire empathy among strangers, can be distilled into two basic camera shots: the frontal close-up and the three-quarter profile. One angle to show us who we’re looking at, the other to show us who we are.

Dest’s movie tells the story of Henry Green, a young man from Newhallville whose life nearly tears him asunder. On the one hand, Green was a talented acting student at Co-Op High School, a confident and introspective young artist with a big smile and a penchant for Shakespeare. On the other hand, he was an angry and depressed young man who grew up with no money in a violent neighborhood that sits adjacent to one of the wealthiest universities in the world.

The vast majority of the movie sits with Green as he narrates his life story to the camera, facing the viewer eye-to-eye as his words conjure movement from the stillness around him. He tells us how his artistic talent and ambitions led him to the role of Tybalt in a summer production of Romeo and Juliet. His poverty, pride, and aggression found him with three bullets to the stomach after a street confrontation a few blocks from his home.

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Documentary Fest Puts Elm City On Screen

Thursday, June 1, 2017  - The New Haven Documentary Film Festival will be celebrating its four-year anniversary this June with a slate of nonfiction films that feature the Elm City and its residents both in front of and behind the movie camera.

“If I were to identify the theme of this year’s festival,” NHDocs co-founder and co-director Charles Musser said on a recent episode of WNHH’S Deep Focus, “I would say that the theme is New Haven. We have a wide range of films about people who work in New Haven, about communities in New Haven, about incidents in New Haven.”

For Musser, who teaches documentary film at Yale University and is an experienced filmmaker in his own right, the focus on New Haven not only recognizes people in this city who have not had a chance to see themselves or their neighbors on screen before; it also offers an opportunity for New Haven audiences to take a step back and better understand the great diversity of people, communities, challenges, and achievements that make up this city of 130,000 residents.

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Panel Gives Three Takes on Race And Education

Johnson, Walter, and DuBois-Walton at a panel on race and education on Tuesday night.

Johnson, Walter, and DuBois-Walton at a panel on race and education on Tuesday night.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017 - How does racial disparity make itself felt in in the New Haven public school system today? And what is the best way to address that disparity so that all New Haven students are sufficiently prepared, supported, and empowered to become productive, self-sustaining citizens by the time they graduate high school?

Three local educational and policy experts offered three different takes on these questions during an hour-and-a-half panel discussion held on Tuesday night at the New Haven offices of Educators For Excellence at 153 East St.

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Neighbors Press For Action On Dumping

Andrea Konetchy with picture of recent tire dump in East Rock Park.

Andrea Konetchy with picture of recent tire dump in East Rock Park.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017 - The city can fine you for not shoveling your sidewalk or for dumping bulk trash outside your property. But until now, there has been little it can do to enforce those fines.

That’s about to change, now that the city has finally found a qualified person willing to volunteer time to adjudicate appeals to fines.

Neighborhood groups have been waiting for that change and pushing for help in tackling illegal dumping and other public-space violations.

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East Rock Gets Behind Cedar Hill Campaign

A sign for drivers passing through Cedar Hill. (Lucy Gellman photo)

A sign for drivers passing through Cedar Hill. (Lucy Gellman photo)

Tuesday, May 23, 2017 - Thanks to support from the rest of East Rock, isolated Cedar Hill will receive $10,000 toward a grassroots beautification effort designed to build community pride and to connect to surrounding areas of the city currently separated by highway overpasses.

That was the result of a decision of the East Rock Community management team at its monthly meeting Monday night at mActivity gym on Niccoll Street. The team voted to allocate the entirety of its annual Neighborhood Public Improvement Program (NPIP) funds towards the project in Cedar Hill, a small set of self-contained streets at the northeastern tip of the East Rock community.

For each of the past three years, the Livable City Initiative (LCI), the city’s anti-blight agency, has made available $10,000 in NPIP funds to each of the city’s community management teams to help them address neighborhood quality-of-life concerns.

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New Urban Farm Opens In The Hill

Sharic James.

Sharic James.

Monday, May 22, 2017 - Leslie Radcliffe, whose family has a history of heart disease, started growing her own beans, peppers, kale, and tomatoes in 2013 after suffering three mild heart attacks over the course of 13 months.

Four years later, she stood before a quarter-acre plot of recently spread compost and organic topsoil behind Hill Regional Career High School to help usher in a new urban farm specifically designed to help Hill residents like her grow fruits and vegetables, eat more healthfully, build community around nutrition, and moderate diet-related chronic diseases.

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“Participatory Budgeting” Takes On Olive Street Speeding

Friday, May 19, 2017  - Olive Street will be the beneficiary of a new mobile, radar speed sign next year as the result of an annual exercise in “participatory budgeting”: a democratic decision-making process that empowers a neighborhood to decide how to spend a small share of the city budget.

During its monthly meeting at City Hall this week, the Downtown-Wooster Square Community Management Team (DWSCT) voted to dedicate $5,000 of its annual $10,000 in “Neighborhood Public Improvement Program (NPIP)” allotment towards traffic calming on Olive Street.

For the past three years, the Livable City Initiative (LCI), the city’s anti-blight agency, has distributed $10,000 in NPIP money to each community management team in New Haven to spend as it chooses. The program allows community members themselves to debate and decide on which quality-of-life issues they would like to address in any given year.

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Zoning Overhaul Hearings Postponed; Criticism Aired

Wednesday, May 17, 2017  - Two hearings scheduled for a plan to dramatically change how New Haven makes major zoning decisions have been postponed, and the proposal ran into some initial public criticism Tuesday night.

The Legislation Committee’s proposed amendment to the zoning ordinance governing “Community Impacts” came under sharp criticism from members of the Downtown-Wooster Square Community Management Team (DWSMT) on Tuesday night during their monthly meeting at City Hall.

The plan would create a new “high impact” category of zoning approval that would require Yale University to go through a new layer of review — and detail a wide-ranging list of “community impacts” — before it builds anything in New Haven. (Read a previous full article about the proposal, and arguments for and against it, by clicking here.)

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Plans Revived For Wooster Sq. Apartments

Wednesday, May 17, 2017 - A historic industrial building in the Wooster Square neighborhood that has sat vacant for years may soon be home to nearly two dozen new apartments and a street-level café or microbrewery.

Real estate developer Peter Chapman presented this vision for a building he owns at 433 Chapel St. during the Downtown-Wooster Square Community Management team’s monthly meeting at City Hall on Tuesday night.

Chapman first bought the building at the corner of Hamilton Street — just on the other side of where I-91 bisected the historic neighborhood into residential and industrial zones back during urban renewal — from the city in 2002 with the intention of converting the six-story brick warehouse into 14 apartments and a street-level commercial space. After years of delayed development and political troubles stymied his first attempts to rehab, and then to sell, the building, Chapman told the management team on Tuesday night, he is now on firm financial footing. He said he has a plan for the building that fits well within the city’s zoning requirements; and that he, just like everyone in the neighborhood, is eager to see it once again occupied.

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Non-Jail Program For Low-Level Offenders Pitched In The Hill

Brown explains Albany’s LEAD program during Hill North CMT meeting.

Brown explains Albany’s LEAD program during Hill North CMT meeting.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017 -  

The police get a call from Walmart that somebody has been caught shoplifting. The officers run the offender’s criminal history, and quickly find out that he has a 40-page rap sheet. Not 40 arrests; 40 pages.

Will one more arrest put this guy on the straight and narrow? Or is there another route, away from prison and toward social services, that would better change behavior, reduce recidivism, protect the community, and save the taxpayers money?

This was the central question under discussion Tuesday night during the Hill North Community Management Team’s monthly meeting at Career High School.

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Budget Critics Warn Against Reliance On Struggling State

Alders at Monday night’s budget hearing at City Hall.

Alders at Monday night’s budget hearing at City Hall.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017 - Weeks before the city has to finalize and approve a new fiscal year budget, a handful of government watchdogs expressed their deep concerns that the proposed budget relies too much on expected aid from a state on the brink of financial disaster.

Such was the prevailing sentiment at an hour-long public budget hearing held by the Finance Committee of the Board of Alders at City Hall on Monday night.

Although the aldermanic chambers were crowded with city employees waiting for a closed-door executive session meeting later in the evening about union negotiations, only a half-dozen citizens testified before the committee, which has spent the past few months holding hearings on the mayor’s proposed $554.5 million operating budget for Fiscal Year 2017-18. The Board of Alders must approve a final city budget by the end of the month.

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Wheelies, Helmets Abound At Kick-off Bike Block Party

Omarhie Wilson gets a new brain-colored bike helmet.

Omarhie Wilson gets a new brain-colored bike helmet.

Monday, May 8, 2017 - As Vanessa Wilson and her son Omarhie crossed Ivy Street on their way to pick up food for breakfast, they stumbled upon a treasure trove of biking goodies: a bicycle repair station, a pop-up bike lane, a table full of seat covers and reflectors, and plenty of tips on how to bike safely in New Haven.

By the time they resumed their grocery shopping trip a half hour later, the Newhallville mother and son were the proud owners of two new bicycle helmets, and were already looking forward to their next family bike trip up the Farmington Canal.

“This is wonderful,” Vanessa said. “I take the kids on the bike trail all the time, and I was just talking with Omarhie about his bike because his light recently fell off.” Omarhie, who is in second grade at Lincoln-Bassett School, looked up with a smile, tugging lightly at his new brain-patterned headgear.

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DeLauro Pledges Support For Fasting Protesters

DeLauro joins the Local 33 fasters and their supporters in Beinecke Plaza.

DeLauro joins the Local 33 fasters and their supporters in Beinecke Plaza.

Saturday, April 29, 2017 - On the fifth day of a graduate student-teacher fast taking place at the heart of Yale University, the sun-dazed but spirited protesters received a visit of support from a U.S. congressperson with deep roots in New Haven labor history.

On Saturday at noon in Yale’s Beinecke Plaza, U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro paid a visit to the eight fasters and a few dozen supporters gathered beneath the sheer makeshift protest structure that has been standing between Beinecke Library and Woodbridge Hall since Wednesday.

By not eating or drinking anything but water and staying outside for an average of 12 hours each per day, the graduate student-teachers are seeking to get the university to negotiate a first contract with their newly formed union, UNITE HERE Local 33, which held elections earlier this year.

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After Fire, Jewish Community Asks: Where’s The Hub?

Ravski at Jewish Federation town hall on Wednesday night.

Ravski at Jewish Federation town hall on Wednesday night.

Thursday, April 27, 2017 - When New Haven native Jeffrey Levinson was a senior in college in 1991, he and his sister scraped together $1,800 to help relocate the Jewish Community Center of Greater New Haven (JCC) from downtown New haven to 360 Amity Rd. in Woodbridge.

“We believed in the people who were leading that effort to build a new JCC,” said Levinson, who now lives in Milford. “They had this sense that they carried from their parents, and from Legion Avenue, that the New Haven Jewish community had a culture that needed to be celebrated and constantly reinvigorated.”

Twenty-five years later, a fire that rendered the center uninhabitable for at least a year has put the future of the center and the community it serves at a critical juncture. Levinson called on local Jewish leaders to restore the JCC to its status as a true cultural and historical center “that’s alive, and that’s living. Give me a reason to get in the car and drive a half hour to come here.”

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A Moral Call To Action On Poverty

Desmond, Gage, and Salgado onstage at CCA forum at Career.

Desmond, Gage, and Salgado onstage at CCA forum at Career.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017 - After spending years interviewing tenants and landlords and reporting on urban evictions, Matthew Desmond reached a conclusion that surprised him: Conventional liberal and conservative explanations that heap blame on everything from deindustrialization to out-of-wedlock childbirth overlook the actual root causes of poverty in this country.

Poverty comes not from an absence of resources, Desmond discovered, but from a national unwillingness to confront a profound moral problem. With empathy and effort and understanding, the communal choices that lead to unstable housing for this country’s neediest can be collectively rethought and made anew.

That rethinking about poverty and housing and that moral challenge took center stage Tuesday night in the auditorium of Hill Regional Career High School.

Read the full article here...