Articles on this Page
- 12/08/16--15:42: _ New Haven Sets Dea...
- 12/08/16--15:46: _Hillary Clinton War...
- 12/08/16--17:32: _Congress Passes Act...
- 12/08/16--17:51: _Manchester Road Clo...
- 12/08/16--18:11: _Ex-Hartford Cop Lin...
- 12/08/16--14:15: _Trump Taps Fast-Foo...
- 12/08/16--15:47: _Check to See if the...
- 12/09/16--04:43: _Trump Spent $3M on ...
- 12/09/16--15:47: _Conjoined Twins Sep...
- 12/09/16--06:14: _Delta Latest Airlin...
- 12/09/16--10:27: _How a Partying Mace...
- 12/09/16--11:58: _Vernon Man Charged ...
- 12/09/16--11:22: _Killer Update: Sams...
- 12/09/16--08:29: _Thousands of Toys D...
- 12/09/16--11:54: _Embers from Wood St...
- 12/09/16--08:35: _Lyman Memorial in L...
- 12/09/16--08:54: _Americans Mixed on ...
- 12/09/16--09:36: _Governor, Union Agr...
- 12/09/16--18:23: _Trump's Picks Expec...
- 12/09/16--10:44: _Winter Weather Wall...
- 12/08/16--15:42: New Haven Sets Deadline for Homeless to Leave Camp
- 12/08/16--15:46: Hillary Clinton Warns Against 'Epidemic' of Fake News
- 12/08/16--17:32: Congress Passes Act to Help Lower Ticket Prices
- 12/08/16--17:51: Manchester Road Closed Following Water Main Break
- 12/08/16--18:11: Ex-Hartford Cop Linked to Excessive Force Probe Charged With Assault
- 12/08/16--14:15: Trump Taps Fast-Food CEO as Labor Secretary
- 12/08/16--15:47: Check to See if the State Owes You Money
- 12/09/16--04:43: Trump Spent $3M on Family Business as Expenses in Campaign
- 12/09/16--15:47: Conjoined Twins Separated After 17-Hour Surgery in California
- 12/09/16--06:14: Delta Latest Airline to Upgrade Its Snacks
- 12/09/16--10:27: How a Partying Macedonian Cashes in on Fake News
- 12/09/16--11:58: Vernon Man Charged in Standoff That Closed Route 83
- 12/09/16--11:22: Killer Update: Samsung to Make All Galaxy Note 7s Unusable
- 12/09/16--08:29: Thousands of Toys Donated for Toy Drive
- 12/09/16--11:54: Embers from Wood Stove Sparked Danbury Fire: Officials
- 12/09/16--08:35: Lyman Memorial in Lebanon Closed Due to Oil Leak
- 12/09/16--08:54: Americans Mixed on Trump's Effect on Their Wallets: Survey
- 12/09/16--09:36: Governor, Union Agree to Changes in State Pension System
- 12/09/16--18:23: Trump's Picks Expected for Interior, Economic Council
- 12/09/16--10:44: Winter Weather Wallops Northwest
New Haven city officials set the gave the remaining homeless people living at camp site next to the Mill River by East Rock park the deadline of Thursday Dec. 15 to pack up and leave.
NBC Connecticut visited the homeless camp and met a couple who says they are not sure where they are going to move next.
The generator noise coming from a makeshift tent made out of a blue tarp is how Richard and Lora are trying to keep warm in the winter months.
“Her father gave us the generator and a small little heater,” Richard said.
“Especially being a married couple out here, it’s hard, it’s hard to get a place,” Lora said.
“There’s no anything for married couples,” Richard added.
This campsite near an I-91 off ramp along the river has been this couple’s home since April.
“With us its landlords,” Richard said when asked why they live at this camp site. “I get a partial social security check and when my check goes up, the rent goes up.”
They learned Wednesday they have until next Thursday to pack up.
Lora told NBC Connecticut that she isn't sure what they will do next.
New Haven Mayor Toni Harp’s spokesperson Laurence Grotheer said city agencies are working to relocate the remaining residents at the camp site.
Community non-profits like the United Way of Greater New Haven are also stepping in to help.
“I think we’re all working on the same understanding that the bulldozer will come and those folks are going to lose their homes,” Chief Impact Officer Amy Casavina Hall said.
In the last month, United Way has helped three people move from the homeless camp into new housing, Casavina Hall added.
“I think we can and must do better than have people live in an unsafe place,” she added. "It’s not fit for winter time.”
After recently helping clean up piles of trash, Richard said it is not fair the city is forcing him and his wife to move by next week.
“The messes that we cleaned up out here, none of us in this campsite had anything to do with that,” he said. “We get kicked out everywhere, we get treated like the rotten people that are out here, some of them, we’re not.”
The couple said they have initiated the process with the United Way in hopes of finding new housing.
The city is still considering what to do to clean up the area that is on city park land, Grotheer said.
Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
Hillary Clinton appealed Thursday for a bipartisan fight against an "epidemic of malicious, fake news," calling the dissemination of false propaganda a threat with "real-world consequences."
"It's now clear that so-called fake news can have real world consequences. This isn't about politics or partisanship. Lives are at risk. Lives of ordinary people just trying to go about their days to do their jobs, contribute to their communities. It's a danger that must be addressed and addressed quickly," Clinton told lawmakers at the Capitol during a portrait unveiling in honor of retiring Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid.
"It's imperative that leaders in both the private and public sector step up to protect our democracy and innocent lives," she added.
The former secretary of state sounded the alarm one month after her presidential election loss to Donald Trump in a race that was beset by the public spread of misinformation on social media.
Clinton's reference to the "real-world consequences" of fake news comes days after a man fired an assault rifle at a Washington D.C. pizza parlor. Edgar Maddison Welch, 28, said he went to investigate a fake online news story about a child sex trafficking ring run by Hillary Clinton and prominent Democrats operating out of the restaurant.
Clinton received sustained applause as she stood to speak, ruefully remarking, "This is not exactly the speech at the Capitol I hoped to give" after the election.
She joked that after spending several weeks in the woods taking selfies, she thought it would be a good idea to emerge.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.
Photo Credit: Getty Images
Former US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton speaks during a portrait unveiling ceremony for outgoing Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), on Capitol Hill December 8, 2016 in Washington, DC.
The Better Online Ticket Sales (BOTS) Act promises to outlaw the software designed to buy hundreds or thousands of tickets at a time, and it’s one signature away from becoming law.
It’s designed to help people like Philippa Mylander, who thought she had it all figured out the day Green Day tickets went on sale.
“My daughter and I both sat in front of the computer watching the countdown,” said Mylander. “The very second it went on sale, we hit search, and right away there was nothing available.”
She’s not alone. Officials estimate fans of the popular Broadway show Hamilton so far have overpaid by more than 15 million dollars, because bots allow its users to buy in bulk, then turn for a profit.
“It’s really pretty simple,” said US Senator Richard Blumenthal in October 2016. “Basically, everybody should have a fair chance to buy tickets. No one should be permitted to jump ahead of the line before there even is a line, and then resell those tickets at hugely inflated prices.”
Blumenthal pushed Congress to vote for the BOTS Act for months, until it passed unanimously through both the House and the Senate. If signed by President Obama, the new law would make both the use and the creation of ticket bots illegal. Anyone in violation could face several thousand dollars in fines from the Federal Trade Commission.
As for the consumer, Mylander is excited her next ticket-buying experience will be better than her last, if the President comes around.
“I’d be thrilled,” said Mylander. “We love going to concerts.”
Crews are at the scene of a water main break in Manchester.
Manchester Police said the water main broke on Adams Street.
Part of the road is closed and only one lane is open.
Police are assisting with traffic.
No other details were immediately available.
The retired Hartford police officer who is purportedly seen kicking a handcuffed suspect laying on the ground in a dashcam video linked to an investigation into possible excessive force has been arrested for assault, police said.
Sgt. Sean Spell was arrested on Thursday night for his involvement in the excessive force case.
Spell said Emilio Diaz had been spitting blood that was leaking from a forehead wound onto another officer during his arrest, Spell wrote in his incident report.
"Diaz was spitting out blood out of his mouth towards me," Spell wrote in the report, filed the day after the arrest of Diaz and Ricardo Perez. Diaz was kneeling and handcuffed when Spell approached the suspect, the report said.
"I told Diaz to stop spitting blood and to lay down prone, or I would force him down, which he refused to comply," Spell wrote in the report. "Not being in possession of latex gloves, I used my right foot forcefully onto the back side of Diaz's head, and forced him to the ground."
The incident reports details the accounts of all officers involved in the arrest of two men who had stolen a Toyota Camry and led police on a chase from Hartford to West Hartford on June 4.
The driver sped off after loudly honking his horn on Zion and Glendale Streets, ran stop signs and led officers through several residential streets before the chase ended on Flatbush Avenue in West Hartford when officers deployed "speed sticks," according to Deputy Police Chief Brian Foley and a Hartford police report.
A dashcam mounted in a West Hartford Police cruiser appears to show Hartford officers kicking or stomping one of the suspects, who was in handcuffs, according to police.
Spell said he "detected a strong, distinct odor of PCP emanating from Diaz, which usually involves violent behavior."
Officer Stephen Barone wrote in his incident report that after the arrest, police found PCP and marijuana while searching the Camry.
Hartford police obtained the dashcam videos from the state's attorney, who is investigating the incident to avoid any conflict of interest.
Police identified the driver they arrested as Perez, 34, of Hartford. As officers approached the car after the chase, Perez hit a Hartford detective with the car, according to police, and hit four Hartford Police vehicles during the pursuit of the vehicle.
Perez and Diaz, 38, of Hartford, had to be hospitalized and Hartford Police said they launched a preliminary investigation the next day when the suspects' bruised and cut faces appeared in mugshots and raised concerns in the department.
The report from Hartford Police said Perez violently struggled with officers and a West Hartford officer, Carlo Faienza, used a stun gun, but it did not affect the suspect, so an offer punched Perez in the torso.
Faienza wrote that Perez "appeared to be under the influence of something and was showing signs of enormous bursts of strength by keeping his hands underneath his body."
Perez's mug shot shows a swollen eye and bandages, while Rivera's shows a gash in his head.
Police also said the car Perez was driving was stolen and they found PCP and marijuana inside.
The state attorney has not determined whether criminal charges are warranted but an investigation is ongoing, Hartford police said.
Later in June, attorney Corey Brinson filed notices on behalf of Perez and Diaz the two men, alleging police used excessive force when arresting Diaz and said they were physically beaten and mentally traumatized.
Brinson told the Hartford Courant that his "client denies spitting blood at anybody."
Spell was part of the department for 20 years retired following the pursuit. Foley said there are no laws in place to prevent an officer involved in a case like this from retiring.
Photo Credit: Hartford Police
Elimio Diaz, left, and Ricardo Perez, right
President-elect Donald Trump on Thursday nominated Andy Puzder, the outspoken CEO of the fast-food company that owns burger chains Carl's Jr. and Hardee's, as his secretary of labor.
“Andy Puzder has created and boosted the careers of thousands of Americans, and his extensive record fighting for workers makes him the ideal candidate to lead the Department of Labor,” Trump said in a release. “Andy will fight to make American workers safer and more prosperous by enforcing fair occupational safety standards and ensuring workers receive the benefits they deserve, and he will save small businesses from the crushing burdens of unnecessary regulations that are stunting job growth and suppressing wages.”
Puzder, who heads the California-based CKE Restaurants, has been a strong proponent of rolling back regulations within the restaurant industry.
In addition, Puzder has come out against raising the federal minimum wage higher than $9 an hour, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Puzder, who has spent his career in the private sector, has supported the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
“I am honored to be nominated by President-elect Trump for Secretary of Labor. I look forward to the opportunity to help President-elect Trump restore America’s global economic leadership,” said Puzder. “The President-elect believes, as do I, that the right government policies can result in more jobs and better wages for the American worker. I’m proud to be offered the chance to serve in his Administration.”
Photo Credit: AP
File photo: President-elect Donald Trump and Andy Puzder, chief executive of CKE Restaurants, walk from Trump National Golf Club Bedminster clubhouse in Bedminster, N.J., Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016. In the background is Vice President-elect Mike Pence.
The state is holding on to million of dollars in unclaimed property and some of that money could belong in your wallet.
State Treasurer Denise L. Nappier has kicked off the annual campaign to return millions to the rightful owners and more than 95,000 new names of individuals, businesses and organizations have been released online in the CT Big List, which includes around 1.5 million names.
“Have you ever experienced the pleasant surprise of finding a few dollars tucked away in a forgotten jacket hanging in your closet? There’s no feeling like found money, even if it’s only a couple of dollars. Well, I’ve got great news,” Treasurer Denise Nappier said in a statement. “We have millions of dollars waiting to be returned to owners. I encourage everyone to search our website to Find What’s Yours! And even if you don’t see your own name on the list, you might notice a relative who has passed away with unclaimed property waiting to be claimed.”
If you find your name, there are two ways to claim what your money.
Download a claim form at www.CTBigList.com, and follow the instructions
Call 1-800-833-7318, weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.
President-elect Donald Trump spent $3 million on the family business as campaign expenses in the final weeks of the race, according to the last Federal Election Committee filing of the 2016 campaign, NBC New reported.
But even while spending millions on Trump-owned entities, he still spent less overall than Democratic rival Hillary Clinton during the closing stretch of the campaign and beyond.
Trump spent $94.5 million from Oct. 20 to Nov. 28, while Clinton spent $131.8 million over the same period, according to the new filings. The numbers indicate Clinton dramatically increased her spending during the last weeks of the campaign, whereas Trump's remained steady. They spent nearly the same amount, Clinton $50 million and Trump $49 million, during the first 19 days of the month.
Photo Credit: AP
President-elect Donald Trump speaks at a rally at Hy-Vee Hall, Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016, in Des Moines, Iowa.
Erika and Eva Sandoval will be able to share the uncanny connection twins are said to have, but a grueling 17-hour surgery has ensured that they can soon do that safely.
The 2-year-old twins from Antelope, California, were born conjoined, but as of Wednesday were separated by surgeons at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford. The surgery began on Tuesday and lasted through early Wednesday, hospital officials said.
The girls are in stable condition, hospital officials said Thursday, although they remain in the intensive care unit.
Erika and Eva's mother, Aida Sandoval, was overcome with emotion as she spoke to reporters Thursday afternoon. In Spanish, she said that her first words upon seeing the girls emerge from their respective operating rooms were, "You're missing your other part, my daughter. Where is your sister?"
"It still seems very surreal when I see one on one side and the other one on the other side," Aida Sandoval said. "But it brings us all joy to see them, that it happened, that it was a dream come true for everybody."
Dr. Gary Hartman, a pediatric surgeon who led the medical team that performed the lengthy, complicated procedure, recalled meeting the girls' parents, Aida and Arturo Sandoval in 2014. They had just learned that their twins were conjoined and were experiencing "multiple anomalies," he said.
"From that moment forward, the goal of the family and of all of the providers here at Packard has been the same goal that we have for all of our children — and that is that we end up with two happy, healthy girls," Hartman said.
Anyone who met Eva and Erika Sandoval prior to Tuesday's surgery "can testify to the happy part. That is entirely the fault of the Sandovals," he quipped.
"We think that this week we made a big step toward the healthy part," Hartman explained.
Aida Sandoval's pregnancy was overseen by Lucile Packard's perinatal center. She was 32 weeks along when the girls were born via emergency C-section, according to Hartman.
Eva and Erika have spent the first two years of their lives closely monitored by Stanford doctors and others closer to the Sandovals' home in Antelope.
"They were basically joined at the pericardium – which is the sac that covers the heart – joined at the sternum, joined at the liver, they shared parts of the ... small and large bowel, and they shared most of the pelvic organs," said pediatric surgeon Dr. Matias Bruzoni. "So for us it was a big challenge, but little by little and with the help of a lot of people … we were able to, from the top down, finally separate them."
On Tuesday, too, Eva and Erika's surgery depended on about 50 experts in pediatric surgery, orthopedics and anesthesiology as well as plastic surgeons, radiologists, urologists, and more.
Bruzoni said that once the girls were separated, the medical team split into two groups for Eva and Erika's reconstruction phases, which lasted longer than the separation.
"Everyone is very focused on the separation and all the questions are about the separation," Hartman said. But it "doesn’t matter if you get them separated, if you can't get them reconstructed and get them closed."
Hartman admitted that he was extremely concerned about Erika, the smaller twin. "She basically kept getting smaller. The more calories we gave her, the bigger Eva got," he said.
Doctors were worried about her ability to make it through the "stress of the surgery," but Hartman said the girls were reconstructed so well that Erika has already been taken off the ventilator and is recovering faster than Eva.
Hartman joked that he took it upon himself to add levity to the complex surgery.
"I wanted each girl to have half of [their] belly button so for the rest of their life they can look at that half a belly button and think, 'That was where I was connected to my sister,'" he said. "So that's the goofy thing."
The Sandovals knew, going into Tuesday, that Erika and Eva faced an estimated risk of mortality of up to 30 percent, Hartman said
But Aida and Arturo Sandoval stuck by their decision.
"Once you see them, you know their personalities are different," Arturo Sandoval said. "They [got to] have their own lives."
To that, Aida Sandoval added that it was difficult to watch one child feel sick and seek rest and sleep while the other was healthy, happy and wanted to play. She recalled one of the girls experiencing pain when plastic surgeons used tissue expanders to stretch their skin, but her sister simply wanted to "crab walk."
Expressing gratitude to the doctors at Stanford for supporting them, Aida Sandoval said that she had heard "how peaceful it was" in the operating rooms during Eva and Erika's separation and reconstruction.
Now, however, the girls' mother is excited to get "more gray hair."
"They always say, 'When you have twins, you're going to go crazy because one's over here, the other's over there," Aida Sandoval said. "I want to go chasing after one that way and then go chasing after the other. That’s something I do look forward to doing."
Photo Credit: David Hodges / DNK Digital
Erika and Eva Sandoval. (Dec. 6, 2016)
If it's true that an army travels on its stomach, will better snacks keep passengers loyal to one airline?
Delta Air Lines is rolling out new free snacks for customers in the main cabin, including brand-name yogurt bars and pretzels. Some will come in larger portions than before because, Delta has figured out, that's what customers crave.
The menu move comes about a year after United Airlines brought back free snacks by offering noshes like stroopwafels — a gooey Dutch confection — and better coffee. Earlier this year, American Airlines restored free snacks on domestic flights.
Airline executives say they're focusing on both big and little things in the battle for customers.
Delta said Thursday that beginning next week it will retire the airline's brand of peanuts and pretzels and replace them on longer flights with Snyder's of Hanover pretzels, Squirrel honey-roasted peanuts and NatureBox yogurt bars.
Fans of the Biscoff cookies need not fret — those are staying.
Delta also is testing free sandwiches and other meals in economy on some flights between New York and California.
The company stopped selling food on its flights in 2005, The New York Times reported at the time.
For decades, air travelers took it for granted that they would be served meals as part of their ticket price. Airlines gradually took away that perk to save money, but came off looking Scrooge-like.
Continental Airlines claimed it would save $2.5 million by no longer giving away pretzels in 2011. That year parent United Continental Holdings Inc. earned $840 million.
Airlines today seem even more financially healthy enough to feed their customers: Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines Inc. earned $4.5 billion last year.
Photo Credit: AP
In this Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016, photo, a Delta Air Lines jet sits at a gate at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in Atlanta. Delta announced Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016, that the airline is rolling out new free snacks for customers in the main cabin, including brand-name yogurt bars and pretzels.
Dozens of teenagers in the Macedonian town of Veles got rich during the United States presidential election producing fake news for millions on social media, NBC News reported.
The articles, sensationalist and often baseless, were posted to Facebook, drawing in armies of readers and earning fake news writers money from penny-per-click advertising.
One of them, Dimitri — who asked NBC News not to use his real name — says he's earned at least $60,000 in the past six months, far outstripping his parents' income and transforming his prospects in a town where the average annual wage is $4,800. He is one of the more successful fake news pushers in the area.
His main source of cash? Supporters of America's president-elect.
"Nothing can beat Trump's supporters when it comes to social media engagement," he says. "So that's why we stick with Trump."
Photo Credit: Alexander Smith / NBC News
"Dimitri," a fake news producer, looks out over the Macedonian town of Veles.
A 45-year-old Vernon man has been charged in connection a standoff that shut down part of Route 83 in Vernon last Friday.
Police said 45-year-old Edward Sullivan, of Rockville, turned himself in on Thursday morning.
Police responded to his Union Street home on Dec. 2 after a family member called 911 and said he had a gun and was threatening to commit suicide, police said.
When officers arrived on scene, Sullivan came out of the house and waved a revolver in the air, police said.
Because the house is close to Route 83 and several businesses, officers shut down the road for about 30 minutes.
Sullivan was taken into custody and brought to Rockville General Hospital for psychiatric treatment, authorities said, and police removed several other firearms from the home.
Family members who were inside the home at the time of the incident were able to exit safely.
Sullivan was charged with second-degree breach of peace and interfering with police.
He was held in lieu of a $100,000 bond and will appear in Rockville Court today.
Photo Credit: Vernon Police
Edward Sullivan was charged in connection with a standoff in Vernon.
The next software update for the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 will make it completely useless, the company said Friday, effectively killing off the ill-fated phone.
The update, scheduled for Dec. 19, 2016, will stop the recalled device from charging or working as a mobile device. About 1.9 million Galaxy Note 7s were recalled in the United States, after 96 batteries overheated and 13 burns were reported, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
But Verizon said it would not push the update to phones on its network, saying it didn't want to make it harder for people to communicate without a device to switch to.
"We will not push a software upgrade that will eliminate the ability for the Note7 to work as a mobile device in the heart of the holiday travel season. We do not want to make it impossible to contact family, first responders or medical professionals in an emergency situation," Jeffrey Nelson, vice president for Global Corporate Communications said in a statement Friday.
Samsung said that 93 percent of Galaxy Note 7s have been returned.
Samsung has instructions for how to replace or refund phones on its website, which was last updated Friday. It continues to advise that anyone who still has one of the phones immediately power it down and return it for an exchange or refund.
Photo Credit: Getty Images
A Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is held up as other Note 7 phones sit on a counter after they were returned to a Best Buy on September 15, 2016 in Orem, Utah, when the Consumer Safety Commission announced a safety recall on Samsung's new Galaxy Note 7 smartphone after users reported that some of the devices caught fire when charging.
Chaz and A.J hold annual toy drive in New Haven
Embers from a wooden stove that were left in a metal can by the garage sparked a two-alarm fire that displaced two Danbury residents on Friday morning, officials said.
Firefighters responded to a fire at 70 Forty Acre Mountain Road, a single-family ranch, around 10 a.m. and the fire went to a second alarm.
Crews found heavy fire when they arrived and had to use tanker trunks because there were no hydrants in the area.
The wind made it a difficult fire to fight and it took two hours to get under control, officials said.
No injuries were reported.
The road reopened around 2 p.m.
Photo Credit: NBC 7
Lyman Memorial High School in Lebanon is closed for the day after around five gallons of heating oil leaked from a boiler in the building.
A custodian noticed the leak around 6:30 a.m. this morning, according to the superintendent and principal, and the fire department advised school officials to close the school for the day.
School was supposed to open at 7:30 a.m., but the school alerted parents around 6:40 a.m. about the decision to close school for the day and apologized for the late notice, but felt it was better than having the students come in.
The boiler has been fixed and the smell of oil is dissipating.
Crews from the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection have been called to clean up the spill, which is expected to be done later this morning.
Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com
A new survey shows that Americans are split on how they think President-elect Donald Trump’s economic policies will affect them, NBC News reports.
Consumer finance firm Bankrate asked a thousand Americans how they thought the Trump administration would impact their personal finances, and found that the largest group, 39 percent, believe it'll make no difference on their financial status. Twenty-eight percent responded that Trump would have a positive influence on their economic situation, while 26 percent felt the opposite.
The results come just three months after participants of another survey overwhelmingly told Bankrate that the largest risk to the domestic economy in the following half year was the result of the 2016 presidential election. The 39 percent in the latest poll may not connect governmental actions with their own bank accounts and tax returns.
Photo Credit: Getty Images
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump signs a hat after speaking at a rally at the Connecticut Convention Center on April 15, 2016 in Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Matthew Cavanaugh/Getty Images)
The governor and the State Employees Bargaining Agent Coalition have reached an agreement to fully fund the state’s pension obligations and the plan will go to the state General Assembly for approval.
A statement from Gov. Dannel Malloy says the state will make modifications to help avoid the “fiscal cliff the state would otherwise face in the coming years.”
The state of Connecticut has an unfunded liability of nearly $15 billion, according to the governor, and inaction could have resulted in state payments from the General Fund eclipsing $4 to $6 billion for each year in the 2030s, according to the governor.
Senate Republican Leader Len Fasano released a statement, calling the plan an incomplete bailout of a pension system that is "completely out of control."
"Simply refinancing our debt is not the structural change we need to change the direction of our state. This package will add billions of dollars in new costs onto taxpayers beyond what is reflected in the governor’s summary. It’s not a solution and taxpayers deserve better," Fasano said in a statement.
He said the state needs to not only look at how to pay past debts but also make structural changes to state benefits to get future spending under control.
Malloy’s office says the state would have had to make drastic cuts to services or unprecedented tax increases to cover the shortfall.
“I am very grateful to SEBAC leadership that we were able to reach this much-needed and forward-looking agreement. It was incumbent upon us to reform this system before facing the fiscal crisis that could have resulted from $4 to $6-billion-dollar annual ARC payments,” Malloy said in a statement. “This agreement does not alter employee benefits or employee contributions in any way – it simply allows the state to fully fund its obligations at realistic amounts that will end with Connecticut resolving the unfunded liability and emerging with a system that is fully funded. We are holding true to the ideal of improving the financial landscape for future generations.”
The state employee retirement system was funded at 41.5 percent as of June 30, 2014. Illinois has the nation's least funded pension system at 42 percent.
Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com
Donald Trump has offered Goldman Sachs executive Gary Cohn the directorship of the National Economic Council and assistant to the president for economic policy, sources close to Cohn told NBC News.
Trump is also expected to pick Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers as Interior secretary, a senior Trump transition official confirmed to CNBC on Friday.
Meanwhile, Trump's transition team announced Thursday that former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani removed his name from consideration for a position in the new administration during a meeting held on Nov.29. Giuliani will remain on Trump's transition team as a vice chairman.
"Rudy Giuliani is an extraordinarily talented and patriotic American. I will always be appreciative of his 24/7 dedication to our campaign after I won the primaries and for his extremely wise counsel," Trump said in a statement, adding that he can see an important place for him in the administration at a later date."
It is unclear if Cohn, 54, will accept the post, but he reportedly had discussions late last month about leaving Goldman where he is president and chief operating officer.
McMorris Rodgers is the highest-ranking Republican woman in the U.S. House of Representatives. She serves as chair of the House Republican Conference and earlier this month was appointed to serve as a vice chair of Trump's transition team.
Photo Credit: Getty Images
Snow blanketed parts across the U.S. on Friday as an Arctic chill and winter storm brought plunging temperatures and dangerous winter conditions, NBC News reported.
In the Pacific Northwest, an advancing storm was expected to dump snow before advancing over a 2,600-mile area through the Rockies, Plains, Midwest and Northeast by early next week, according to The Weather Channel.
Snow walloped Seattle overnight, with two inches of it hitting parts of the city by 3:30 a.m. (6:30 a.m. ET). The city had been placed under a winter weather advisory.
Winter storm warnings were issued for Portland, Oregon, which had an inch of snow late Thursday. This swiftly turned into freezing rain.
The cold weather and snow is expected to advance inland across the country over the weekend.
Photo Credit: AP
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.
Traffic on Interstate 84 navigate over ice, packed snow and against heavy winds in the Columbia River Gorge near Bridal Veil, Ore., Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016, as the first winter storm of the season hits the region.