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Shelton Wasn’t Keeping Minutes For Controversial Zone Change Request

by Ethan Fry and Aaron Berkowitz | Jan 31, 2017 6:07 pm | Comments (0)

photo:ethan fryThe City of Shelton recently published meeting minutes regarding a controversial development proposal, but only after a Freedom of Information complaint was lodged against the city.

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Unearthed Memo: Ansonia Tax Office Reduced Interest For Some In 2011-2012

by Eugene Driscoll | Oct 25, 2015 12:44 pm | Comments (0)

If you are late paying local property taxes, state law says you must be hit with interest penalties.

But that did not happen in Ansonia for at least 100 taxpayers in fiscal year 2011.

And now the city’s corporation counsel is recommending a special audit to determine whether the city lost out on even more money.

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Turns Out Former Ansonia Tax Collector Didn’t Resign

by Ethan Fry | Oct 13, 2015 6:32 pm | Comments (0)

Bridget Bostic resigned as Ansonia’s tax collector in August 2012 after a Valley Indy story detailed her practice of dispensing receipts to people who had not paid their car taxes.

Or so you were told.

Unbeknownst to the public, the tax collector was allowed to rescind her resignation two weeks after officials publicly announced she had quit.

She then left public service through an early retirement, as state prosecutors reviewed a “fact-finding” report prepared by Ansonia city lawyers.

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Derby Receives $9,900 Refund From Infomercial Company

by Ethan Fry and Eugene Driscoll | Nov 17, 2014 12:54 pm | Comments (2)

Derby Mayor Anita Dugatto announced the city’s agreement with an infomercial company has been terminated and the city has received a full refund.

In September the Board of Aldermen approved an agreement with “Communities of Distinction,” an infomercial series that charges communities $19,800 for a five-minute promotional video.

The agreement OK’d by the Aldermen said legendary quarterback and sports personality Terry Bradshaw was the “Communities of Distinction” host.

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Derby Taxpayers Are Funding $20,000 Infomercial

by Eugene Driscoll | Oct 28, 2014 11:01 pm | Comments (3)

Derby Mayor Anita Dugatto said Tuesday the city is using taxpayer money to fund a $19,800 infomercial to promote the city and lure potential investors.

The video will be five minutes long and will be part of an infomercial called “Communities of Distinction.”

Just who was footing the bill was a mystery Monday, when the city sent out a press advisory inviting coverage of the production shoot.

“It’s an economic development initiative,” Dugatto said. “I’m trying to market the city. This is what we need to do. We need to really put forth what Derby is all about.”

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Is It Safe? Memos Unearth New Concerns Over Pollution At O’Sullivan’s Island In Derby

by Eugene Driscoll | Jan 22, 2014 3:34 pm | Comments (1)

Six internal memos dating back to 2010 warned Derby’s former mayor about possible pollution at O’Sullivan’s Island as the mayor and his administration kept assuring the public the park was safe in the wake of a $4 million federal cleanup.

The memos have never previously been shared with the public.

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Confidential Report Gives Some Details On Derby Investigation

by Eugene Driscoll | Aug 23, 2013 9:08 am | Comments (0)

The report kept from the public’s view regarding the alleged malfeasance of a former Derby tax clerk is far from the Book of Revelation, but it provides some clarification on last year’s internal investigation.

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Ansonia Officials Owe Car Taxes But Don’t Suffer The Consequences

by Jodie Mozdzer Gil | Jul 18, 2012 8:51 pm | Comments (16)

At least three Ansonia public officials received a signed document from the tax collector’s office saying they were up to date on motor vehicle taxes even though they owed money.

The authorization from the tax collector allowed the three officials to register their cars with the Department of Motor Vehicles despite the fact they hadn’t paid their car taxes in years.

The revelation — uncovered after a Valley Independent Sentinel investigation — raises questions regarding the management of the Ansonia Tax Collector’s Office and whether preferential treatment is given to people with connections to City Hall.

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Filthy Conditions Alleged At Derby Dog Pound

by Ethan Fry | Apr 17, 2012 12:25 am | Comments (3)

Last year, when the Valley Independent Sentinel investigated the extraordinarily high kill rate at the Derby dog pound, animal advocates questioned the commitment and management skills of Joe Klapcik, the city’s animal control officer.

Those questions surfaced again Monday, after news spread that Klapcik abruptly quit his job Friday.

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Documents Reveal Conflicts Of Interest At Ansonia Housing Authority

by Jodie Mozdzer Gil | Feb 3, 2012 4:57 pm | Comments (2)

While James Finnucan was in charge of the Ansonia Housing Authority, his family also collected rent from tenants in a Section 8 apartment the Finnucans owned, the Valley Independent Sentinel has learned.

The arrangement was a conflict of interest and Finnucan should have resigned or sought a waiver, according to the regulations of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

However, Finnucan never sought a waiver and he didn’t resign until Dec. 28, 2011 — 17 months after Ansonia Housing Authority employee Gwen Archer first complained about the situation.

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