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Yes, The Firelight Commons Apartment/Business Complex Decision Has Been Reached

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Jun 152021
 

Back on June 1, Orange Live covered the Town Plan & Zoning Meeting during which an apartment complex proposal for the Firelight Plaza on Old Tavern Road that includes 72 units and 226 parking places was discussed at length. 

After some changes were made to the plans, the TP&Z met with the attorney for the applicant and others again on Tuesday, June 15, via zoom.

The back and forth was rather boring and can be seen on OGAT On Demand as soon as it is uploaded.

The Commissioners DID come to a decision about the complex, and it was approved. The NuVita FroYo building will be demolished and it will NOT be replaced. So, there you go, Orange, get ready for  some new apartments and businesses in that nearly dead mini-mall.

Best Of The Best Student Athletes Honored Today

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Jun 132021
 

A shot from the last actual Block A Dinner in 2019. (Mark Greco Memorial Hockey Award)

Every year exemplary student-athletes are honored at the BLOCK A Ceremony. 

Normally, the event includes a dinner, but with COVID restrictions just recently being lifted, this year’s 65th Annual Awards will be distributed in the Amity High School Auditorium.

Last year, sadly, because of the pandemic, the BLOCK A Awards was a virtual event, and the recipients received their trophies and plaques during the graduation procession — It was pretty much a drive-thru commencement that took place over a number of days. Athletic Director Ernie Goodwin was the last stop before the graduates were announced and got their diplomas.

I am so happy that these hard-working athletes will be given a proper ceremony this year.

This is an invitation-only event.

Orange Live will post a list of all of the winners and their photos by tomorrow morning. 

 

 

Connecticut’s “Best Doctors” Are In Orange

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Jun 122021
 

Smilow Cancer Hospital Care Center at Orange physicians Johanna LaSala, MD, and Kelsey Martin, MD, are highlighted in the 2021 list of Top Doctors in Connecticut Magazine.

Published in the magazine’s June issue, the ‘Best Doctors’ list includes physicians nominated by their peers. Dr. LaSala is a medical oncologist and hematologist and Dr. Martin specializes in hematologic care in the Orange, Connecticut community.

“We are very proud Dr. Martin and Dr. LaSala were selected for inclusion in Connecticut’s Best Doctors,” said Jeremy Kortmansky, MD, Chief Network Officer at Smilow Cancer Hospital.  “They are exceptionally talented clinicians and are committed to providing compassionate, state-of-the-art care to our patients.”

Dr. LaSala has practiced in New Haven County for over 20 years and joined the Yale Cancer Center faculty nine years ago. She cares for patients with all cancer diagnoses. Dr. LaSala completed her medical degree at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and her residency at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.  Dr. Martin was recruited to the Yale Cancer Center faculty in 2018 from Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and provides hematologic care to patients. She received her Medical Degree from the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin, Ireland, and completed her residency in Internal Medicine at the Jacobi Medical Center/Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, NY.

The Smilow Cancer Hospital Care Center in Orange has 16 staff members and a 100-percent oncology certified nursing staff. The facility treats more than 750 patients per month and schedules 400 infusion visits per month. Patients receive nutritional counseling, genetic counseling, palliative care, and patient navigation.

The full list of physicians included in this year’s ‘Best Doctors’ issue can be accessed online at the Connecticut magazine website.

For more information about the Smilow Cancer Hospital Care Center at Orange, visit or call:

The Smilow Cancer Hospital Care Center
Spring Brook Common
240 Indian River Road, Building A, Suite 1A
Orange, CT 06477

Phone: (203) 795-1664

Shots Fired! Orange Man Charged With Witness Intimidation

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Jun 112021
 

Christopher Barretta

On June 3, 2021, at around 11:30 p.m., multiple gunshots were fired from a vehicle toward a residence on Old Tavern Road. Investigation showed that an occupied house and multiple vehicles in the driveway were struck with bullets. Although the residents were home at the time, there were no reported injuries.

Further investigation and evidence revealed that the suspect vehicle from which the shots were fired was a 2004 Hummer H2 registered to Christopher Barretta, 47, of 476 Alling Farm Road in Orange.
The victim in this shooting incident had also been the victim of a theft in 2020 for which Christopher Barretta was arrested. That court case, along with five other criminal cases involving Barretta, are pending in Milford Superior Court.
Officers seized the Hummer and executed a search warrant, during which evidence was recovered.
An arrest warrant was obtained and on June 10 at 2:19 p.m., officers conducted an investigative motor vehicle stop on Cummings Road, and Barretta was taken into custody and charged with witness intimidation.
He was held overnight and arraigned this morning, June 11 at CT Superior Court, Derby.
According to the police, this investigation remains ongoing. More charges and additional arrests are possible.

Breaking: OVFD Fighting House Fire On Ridgeview

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Jun 102021
 

Just before 9 p.m., members of the Orange Volunteer Fire Department were on the scene of a very active house fire at 467 Ridgeview Road.

Word is that it was a real inferno.

The Woodbridge Volunteer Fire Department covered the town of Orange while our firefighters battled the blaze.

Stay clear of the area if you can and let them do their jobs. — The area is roped off.

NEVER run over fire hoses laid out in the road.

By 9:10 p.m. it appeared that the fire was knocked down, but the smoke was still visible from the Ranch-style home.

Neighbors said the whole area of the home where the bedroom once was is gone, and they were relieved to see their neighbor walking around unharmed. Click HERE for an unedited video shot by a neighbor.

We will have more information after we talk to the Fire Marshal.

 

Police Identify Alegi Field Homicide Victim

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Jun 092021
 

Woodbridge Police have identified the victim of Tuesday’s homicide that occurred on the property of the Pease Road Playground / Alegi Athletic Fields, located at 160 Pease Road, as Rondell Atkinson, 33, of West Haven.

Detectives from the Woodbridge Police Department and Connecticut State Police Central District Major Crime continue to investigate the circumstances surrounding his death and are seeking to locate his vehicle.

The vehicle, (depicted in the photograph) is a grey 2016 Hyundai Sonata, 4-door sedan, bearing Connecticut Registration:  BC15394.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Woodbridge Police Department at (203) 387-2511. 

 

Homicide Reported Within Blocks Of Amity High

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Jun 082021
 

The Woodbridge Police Department, in conjunction with the CT State Police Central District Major Crime Unit, are investigating a homicide after a body was discovered on the property of the Pease Road Playground /Alegi Athletic Fields at 160 Pease Road.

At around 6 a.m. Tuesday morning, June 8, police and emergency medical personnel responded to that location after a jogger reported finding a body.

A male victim, with gunshot wounds was found deceased at the scene and police determined that there was no immediate threat to the community.

Investigators continue to work to positively identify the victim and determine the circumstances surrounding this incident.

NOTE: The playground (as depicted on the map) is not far from the Amity High School campus.

The park area has been reopened to the public.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Woodbridge Police Department at 203-387-2511.

“Alexa, Tell Me About Sidewalk” — Block It Today

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Jun 082021
 

On Monday, Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-Norwalk) and state Senator James Maroney (D-Milford), Chair of the General Law Committee, released a statement regarding a recent warning concerning Amazon-made devices such as the Alexa smart speaker and Ring Doorbell.

Connecticut Attorney General William Tong warned consumers that Amazon will automatically connect their smart home devices and products to a new shared network called ‘Amazon Sidewalk’ on June 8.

This legislative session, Senators Duff and Maroney have worked together on Senate Bill 893 to establish a consumer data bill of rights to will protect Connecticut residents’ online privacy.

“Amazon’s announcement is yet another attack on consumer privacy,” said Duff. “Large technology corporations continue to hide behind complex legal agreements to use your data for their own profit. The residents of Connecticut deserve a bill of rights to protect their privacy. It is long past time that the government fights back against the abuses of Big Tech.”

“Amazon’s lack of transparency with protecting consumers pushes me harder to pass legislation that secures better online privacy for residents in the state,” Maroney said. “Consumers should have the option to choose if they want their data to be shared. It’s concerning companies are able to instantly share a consumer’s information and my hope with this legislation is that consumers feel more comfortable and have more trust in their mobile devices; that their data isn’t being collected without their knowledge.”

Under Senate Bill 893, companies will be required to clearly cite a privacy policy telling consumers what data is being collected, how it is being used, and why. This way, consumers are aware and have the right of knowing what information is being collected from them, the ability to see and fix any false data that is collected from them, and the right to have any collected data be deleted.

This bill also prohibits companies from discriminating against those who choose to exercise these rights. This bill will also provide protection over user information, thus preventing companies from abusing their data. Senate Bill 893 requires companies to lessen the amount of data they collect and only use it for the purposes they have collected it for; therefore having fewer data breaches and identity theft.

With Amazon automatically connecting consumer’s electronic devices to a new shared network, if a person is unaware this is happening today, they give up their right to protect their personal data. Devices like Alexa are already connected to a person’s home private Internet connection.

When Amazon transforms it to a Sidewalk Bridge, the device creates a new network of its own that’s not WiFi. Instead, it uses common Bluetooth to connect devices nearby. Sidewalk authorizes the device to share a portion of a person’s home’s Internet bandwidth which could count toward a person’s Internet service provider’s data cap.

As people become aware of how much of their personal information is being observed and recorded, more eyebrows have been raised. Numerous people weren’t previously aware that they were being tracked. Apple recently released a new operating system and found that only 2 to 4% of Americans are opting in for tracking.

The International and Internet Society found that 69% of consumers are concerned about how personal data is collected in mobile apps, such as banking or health apps. It was also found that 62% of consumers are concerned about personal data collected through devices such as computers and tablets.

This legislation ensures transparency within companies and consumers, therefore guaranteeing that consumers know just how much of their information is being collected and are given the right to control what is done with that data.

Click HERE to learn how to disable Sidewalk.

 

Jun 022021
 

The Amity Varsity Sports Season is drawing to a close with a few more games and the CIAC Championship meets and games.

We wish our Spartans and Lady Spartans all the best as they battle to stay on top and come home with the title.

Wednesday, June 2

Girls Tennis vs New Canaan HOME at Amity Tennis Courts at 3 p.m.

Softball vs Newtown HOME at Amity at 4 p.m.

Boys Lacrosse vs Xavier HOME at Amity Field 3 at 4:30 p.m.

Boys Volleyball vs Trumbull AWAY at Trumbull High School at 5 p.m.

Next Week

Monday, June 7

Boys Golf CIAC Div1 Golf Championship AWAY Tallwood CC at 8 a.m.

Wednesday, June 9

Girls Golf CIAC Div1 Golf Championship AWAY Grassy Hill CC at 8:30 a.m.

Boys Outdoor Track CIAC Open Boys Outdoor Track Championship AWAY Willow Brook Park at 1:30 p.m.

Girls Outdoor Track CIAC Open Girls Outdoor Track Championship AWAY Willow Brook Park at 1:30 p.m.

Saturday, June 12

Boys Golf CIAC State Open Golf Championship AWAY Black Hall Club at 1 p.m.

Girls Golf CIAC State Open Golf Championship AWAY Black Hall Club at 1 p.m.

 

 

Notes In A Nutshell: Orange TP&Z June 1

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Jun 012021
 

The Town Plan and Zoning Commission met via ZOOM on Tuesday, June 1 at 7 p.m.

One discussion involved “illegal” temporary signage used by about 35 different businesses on the Boston Post Road.

The signs that have popped up in mass since the COVID crisis began to draw people’s attention to their businesses are causing some serious Sightline issues.

Business owners need to reacquaint themselves with the town regulations regarding signage – temporary signs are not allowed.

Zoning Enforcement Officer Jack Demirjian will visit business owners and talk to them about the issue.

FIRELIGHT COMMONS

SPECIAL USE & SITE PLAN APPLICATION in conjunction with an ARCHITECTURAL STANDARDS SUPPLEMENT & LIGHTING SUPPLEMENT– Property known as 35 Old Tavern Road and 308 Racebrook Road located in the LSC Zoning District: Submitted by 35 Old Tavern Road, LLC. A proposed mixed-use development including the construction of a 134,000 sq. ft, three story building with 72 dwelling units along with 226 parking spaces. An APPLICATION FOR SPECIAL PERMIT has also been submitted in accordance with section 383-175B for shared parking. (Continuation from the 5/18/2021 meeting)

There is an apartment complex proposal in the works for the Firelight Plaza on Old Tavern Road that includes 72 units and 226 parking places.

The commission previously requested a reduction in the parking spaces.

Attorney Marjorie Shansky, representing the applicant, spoke at length about the demand for her client to provide sidewalks on the opposite side of the street (CVS, Post Office, Bank, etc.) that they would be responsible for clearing after a snowfall, which, she said, didn’t seem right since it had no relation whatsoever to the Firelight Plaza.

The traffic Commission wants a crosswalk put in for the safety of residents crossing over to the shopping area, which the applicant agreed to do.

With the commercial and residential components of the proposal, there is a question if parking will be convenient enough to make the businesses viable. Also, will the already congested traffic in the immediate area become a nightmare?

Resident Cathy Hatrick, whose property borders the entire rear property line spoke of her concern about dumpsters, rodents, and what type of, if any, landscaping would be between her land and the building.

The contractors said there will be a required 30′ landscaped buffer between her property and the parking lot.

Hatrick said she knows she won’t have any privacy in her yard from a three-story building looming over it even with mature plants installed.

After much discussion the commissioners weighed in: Paul Kaplan said he would be in favor of the plans; Judy Smith said she thought the proposal, as presented may actually improve traffic in the area; Kevin Cornell said he still had concerns that the proposal didn’t meet the “town center” idea that it was initially meant to be, Tom Torrenti said he would be in favor of the application if the old NuVita building was torn down.

The applicant agreed to go back to the drawing board and submit a new proposal minus the NuVita building.

Demerjian said the absence of the NuVita building would provide better access for police and fire apparatus, which would be a plus. He added that ALL required departments signed off on the current plans with the exception of the Traffic Commission.

The application has been continue= to the next meeting on June 15 when new plans including where the dumpster enclosure will be located on the property and with the exemption of NuVita.