THURSDAY MORNING UPDATE

TWO TORNADOES CONFIRMED

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – The National Weather Service has confirmed that two tornadoes touched down in Connecticut Tuesday. The weather service said Wednesday night that an EF1 tornado with estimated peak winds of 110 mph moved along a 9 1/2 mile path between Beacon Falls and Hamden. A second EF1 tornado with peak winds of 100 mph moved along a 4 1/2 mile path between Southbury and Oxford. Two people in New Fairfield and Danbury were killed in separate accidents in the storms.

CLOCK TOWER ENTHUSIASTS MEET

Community members in New London have begun a grassroots effort to replace the iconic clock tower at Ocean Beach Park. Business owner Jeff Suntup has formed a committee that’s looking to raise enough money to build a new tower.  He says installing a new clock tower will cost between three and four hundred thousand dollars.  Suntup says money for the project can be generated through the sale of souvenir cards with photos of the old clock tower. He says a GoFundMe campaign is also in the offing. The old clock tower overlooked Ocean Beach Park for nearly 50 years before collapsing during a refurbishing effort in 1988.

CRASHES INCREASE DURING BRIDGE CONSTRUCTION

Since work began on repairs to the Gold Star Memorial Bridge, officials have seen an uptick in crashes in the last 12 months. Using a system developed by the University of Connecticut, “The Day” analyzed wrecks that have taken place from Route 12 to the New London side of the bridge. Crashes jumped from 13 in the one year period April 2016-2017 to 45 crashes between April 2017 to this past April. It’s expected the current repair will preserve the 1973 bridge for another 25 years and is scheduled to be finished by Nov. 30 this year.

SHELLFISH COMMISSION MEETS TONIGHT

The public will have a chance to give feedback to the Waterford-East Lyme Shellfish Commission tonight at 6:30 in the Waterford Town Hall. A draft of formal procedures for accepting applications to use the Niantic River for commercial shellfishing will be the subject of the public hearing. The commission has been working with Waterford’s town attorney to develop the new rules for several months.

TAXES GOING UP IN WATERFORD

The Waterford Representative Town Meeting has approved a $93 million budget,  an increase of about $2.4 million. School and town officials said contractual raises, and higher retirement and health insurance costs drove the increase. Yesterday, the town of Waterford Finance Board backed a 1.4 percent property tax increase for 2018-19. About half of the three percent bump they expected. That expected increase was offset with a mix of payments-in-lieu-of-taxes restored by the state last week and slightly higher-than-expected collections in a range of town fees.

NL ADDS FIREFIGHTERS

A swear­ing-in cer­e­mony was held at City Hall Tuesday as the City of New London’s fire department added three cer­ti­fied fire­fight­ers to its ranks. The po­si­tions are funded through the Staffing for Ad­e­quate Fire and Emer­gency Re­sponse, fire­fighter as­sis­tance pro­gram grant. All three are New Lon­don res­i­dents.

CANDIDATES CHOSEN TO REPLACE URBAN

The Repub­li­can and Demo­cratic par­ties in Ston­ing­ton and North Ston­ing­ton have en­dorsed their re­spec­tive can­di­dates for the 43rd Dis­trict state House seat being vacated by state Rep. Diana Urban. Shaun Mas­troianni, a mem­ber of the Ston­ing­ton Plan­ning and Zon­ing Com­mis­sion and a bor­ough burgess, will be the Repub­li­can can­di­date. Ston­ing­ton Select­woman Kate Rotella has gotten the Demo­cratic en­dorse­ment. Urban has said she is helping to run Rotella’s campaign. Urban announced in February she’s not seeking a 10th term in the General Assembly.

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