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Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public

William Outlaw is a natural leader. He's been a key figure in helping to lower New Haven's homicide rate over the last decade. He's a strategist and an organizer who can size up a situation quickly. He can defuse a threatening situation with his charisma and charm. He can run a business. 

As a street outreach worker in New Haven, he uses all the same skills today that he used when he co-ran New Haven's largest cocaine gang in the 1980's. 

John Phelan / Wikimedia Commons

When you head to New York, do you ever take a break from the city and get lost on a trail in Central Park? This hour, we take a look at the life of the man behind that beloved and iconic city park: Connecticut native Frederick Law Olmsted.

Will There Be A Trump Factor Today In Connecticut?

Nov 5, 2019
Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Today’s municipal elections feature unusual bids for redemption by losers of Democratic primaries in two of the state’s largest cities, as Marilyn Moore attempts a write-in campaign to unseat Joseph P. Ganim in Bridgeport and Mayor Toni N. Harp continues as a third-party candidate following her decisive loss to Justin Elicker in September.

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Tuesday, November 5 is Election Day in Connecticut. This means another opportunity for residents to cast ballots for town and city officials. But who will turn out to the polls?

This hour, we check in with reporters and analysts from across the state, and we also hear from you. Will you vote this Election Day? Why or why not?

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Tuesday was the deadline in Connecticut to register to vote before Election Day, Nov. 5. If you happened to miss the deadline and still want to exercise your democratic rights, don’t despair.

Dead Fish, Condoms, Brown Foam: Sewage Has Chokehold On Black Rock Harbor

Oct 3, 2019
Hours after a heavy overnight rainstorm on July 12, a brown, foamy slick was floating in Black Rock Harbor near Captain's Cove Seaport. The West Side plant reported a legal bypass of more than 1 million gallons of disinfected partially treated raw sewage.
Melanie Stengel / C-HIT.org

On April 25, 2018, Patrick Clough walked onto a dock at Fayerweather Yacht Club on Black Rock Harbor in western Bridgeport. He looked down. Swirling around the dock was a brown, foamy slick. Women’s sanitary products and other objects floated in it.

Fall River City Council Hires Boston Law Firm To Enforce Order To Oust Mayor

Sep 19, 2019
Nadine Sebai / The Public's Radio

The city council in Fall River, MA voted Wednesday night to hire a Boston law firm and enforce the temporary removal of its mayor Jasiel Correia. 

Carmen Baskauf / Connecticut Public Radio

Former New Haven alder Justin Elicker pulled off a huge upset in that city's Democratic mayoral primary, ousting incumbent Mayor Toni Harp. It was a rematch for the two. Six years ago it was Harp who bested Elicker to lead the city. This time, the challenger won a comfortable victory, with an unofficial total of 6,825 machine votes to 4,841.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Voters in two dozen Connecticut communities are at the polls today to choose candidates to run for mayor and other top municipal posts. Polling places are open until 8:00pm this evening.

Twenty-Five Primaries Today, With Focus On New Haven

Sep 10, 2019
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Mayors in three of Connecticut’s four largest cities face challenges today as voters go to the polls in 25 municipal primaries, intra-family fights that typically turn on hyper-local issues, personal ambitions and, occasionally, old grudges. 

Stairway on path in Walnut Hill Park in New Britain, Connecticut
John Phelan / Wikimedia Commons

When you head to New York, do you ever take a break from the city and get lost on a trail in Central Park? This hour, we take a look at the life of the man behind that beloved and iconic city park: Connecticut native Frederick Law Olmsted.

Members of the media watch the debate just outside the room it was being filmed in at Hartford. The debate is one of three between four Democratic mayoral candidates over the next week.
Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

Democratic candidates for the 2019 Hartford mayoral election debated Thursday night.

The field includes party-endorsed incumbent Mayor Luke Bronin, J. Stan McCauley, who is a Democrat endorsed by the Republican party, and two candidates that petitioned their way onto the primary ballot -- state Representative Brandon McGee and former Mayor Eddie Perez.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim is seeking reelection this fall. The Democrat will face state senator Marilyn Moore in the September 10th primary. 

The U.S. used to send a lot of its plastic waste to China to get recycled. But last year, China put the kibosh on imports of the world's waste. The policy, called National Sword, freaked out people in the U.S. — a huge market for plastic waste had just dried up.

Where was it all going to go now?

Sen. Marilyn Moore / Facebook

This hour, we talk with Democratic State Sen. Marilyn Moore who, in addition to representing the 22nd District, is campaigning for mayor of Bridgeport, Connecticut.

What is her strategy to successfully unseat the city's current mayor, Joe Ganim? We find out and we also hear from you.

Magicpiano / Wikimedia Commons

Abandoned factories tagged with graffiti. Vacant properties marked by broken windows and overgrown lawns. This hour, we consider the impact of urban blight on communities and hear how some local municipalities are working to improve quality of life.

We check in with the cities of Waterbury and Hartford, where significant strides have been made to survey and address blight.

We also talk with Laura Bliss of CityLab and with a housing official in Baltimore. How effective has the Maryland city’s Vacants to Value program been at reducing the number of vacant, blighted properties? We find out. 

Leamond Suggs has seen pedestrians and drivers looking up at the banners. "People are moved by it," he said.
Lauren Smith / Connecticut Public Radio

Walk or drive around downtown New Haven and you can’t miss them: large-scale banners on the sides of buildings, in windows and on vacant storefronts featuring compelling photos of city youth.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

A state jury has ruled in favor of the city of Hartford and against a developer in the controversial case of the bungled construction of the city's recently-built minor league baseball park. 

In a decision announced Tuesday, the jury found against developer Centerplan in a suit brought after the city fired the developer from the job.

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

If large corporations, like United Technologies, are increasingly eyeing urban hubs for future growth, what are we doing to put our cities at the cusp of that trend? Or more likely, what aren't we doing as a state?

This week, we take stock of what cities such as Hartford, New Haven, and Bridgeport have to offer CEOs looking to relocate their companies, and where they fall short. 

AP Photo

It's been a half-century since the torture and eventual murder of wrongly suspected FBI informant Alex Rackney by members of the Black Panther Party. The racial tensions in New Haven that followed when party leaders were put on trial for Rackney's death led to the National Guard patrolling its streets.

In some ways, the city has changed a lot since then. But many of the social problems that provoked New Haven's angst during that period--injustices by police, substandard housing, gentrificaton, and racial disparity--remain unsolved.

New York City is preparing to become the first urban area in the U.S. to adopt congestion pricing — a fee for drivers entering the city center, designed to reduce gridlock and help fund the city's struggling subway system.

And nearly two years before the fees are put in place, a poll by Quinnipiac University found that 54% of New Yorkers are opposed to the change in policy. That's no surprise to experts on transportation policy.

Pete Beard / Flickr

They live underground and gorge themselves in dumpsters. This hour, we’re taking a long, hard look at creatures you’d probably rather not think about: RATS!

We hear about how the city of Hartford is fighting these unwelcome rodent residents, and we ask a researcher why are these scurrying creatures so successful at living alongside humans?

It's Eddie A. Perez's Turn To Ask For A Second Chance

Apr 4, 2019
Eddie Perez surrounded by supporters Thursday night.
Ryan Lindsay / Connecticut Public Radio

By turns contrite and defiant, Eddie A. Perez launched a populist campaign for mayor of Hartford on Thursday, attacking the downtown corporations that once backed him and testing the notion of whether Connecticut’s capital is ready to join its largest city, Bridgeport, in returning a corrupt former mayor to City Hall.

New York will likely become the first major city in the U.S. to implement a charge for motorists entering its most traffic-clogged streets.

The plan? To reduce gridlock while generating revenue for the city's stressed transit system.

State lawmakers approved the deal on Sunday night, and the new tolls are slated to go into effect in 2021. The tolling is expected to generate $15 billion, dedicated to funding the MTA, New York's transit authority.

A Time For Cities

Mar 28, 2019
This stretch of Main Street in Danbury was referred to as The Thompson Block. On the second floor of 197 Main, notice Baisley Studios. Frank Henry Baisley was a hatter in his younger life before getting into the photography trade.
Danbury Museum and Historical Society

Connecticut’s cities were the glories of their time. Handsome and self-reliant, well-built and functional, they were economic dynamos, often known by the products they made: The Hat City, Brass City, Silk City, etc. These cities made the state strong. And then the U.S. won World War II. Many cities hit their population peaks just after the war, and then began a long decline. The pre-war trickle to the suburbs became a torrent (of whites), on new highways that wrecked city neighborhoods.

Randy Heinitz / Flickr

It is estimated that 12 million Americans live inside one of our nations roughly 45,000 mobile home communities. Despite these numbers, few people outside these parks truly know what life is like for their residents.

Former Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez leaving Hartford Superior Court on November 14, 2018, following arguments over his pension.
Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

A state judge has revoked the public pension of former Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez, a year and a half after Perez pleaded guilty to two corruption-related offenses stemming from his time in office.

Lori Mack / Connecticut Public Radio

The New Haven Police Department lost 49 officers to retirement or better paying jobs in 2018. So far, the department has lost 10 this year. Police Chief Anthony Campbell makes 11. 

Lawmakers, law enforcement, and community organizers gathered in Bridgeport on Thursday to discuss youth violence.
Ryan Lindsay / Connecticut Public Radio

In the wake of a series of shootings involving teen shooters and victims, two Connecticut cities are outlining plans to address youth gun violence. 

Pete Beard / Flickr

They live underground and gorge themselves in dumpsters. This hour, we’re taking a long, hard look at creatures you’d probably rather not think about: RATS!

We hear about how the city of Hartford is fighting these unwelcome rodent residents, and we ask a researcher why are these scurrying creatures so successful at living alongside humans?

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