Rep. Floren Tours Greenwich Police Department

Greenwich Police Sergeant Thorme, Community Impact Section Supervisor, led a tour of the Greenwich Police Department for Reps. Floren, Camillo and Bocchino, and Senator Frantz. During the tour the legislators were able to see the different parts of the police department from the break rooms, to the gym, to the cell blocks and motor pool area while discussing the challenges facing police as they work to protect the community.

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Ramp Closures – Northbound Exit 35 On/Off Ramps on the Merritt Parkway in Stamford and New Canaan

The Connecticut Department of Transportation is announcing the nighttime closure of the Route 15 northbound Exit 35 on and off ramps on or about Thursday, September 8, 2016, for the installation of traffic signal loop detectors.

Route 15 (Merritt Parkway) Northbound Exit 35 Off-Ramp:
Ramp will be closed between the hours of 8:00 PM and 6:00 AM, Thursday, September 8, 2016.  A complete detour will be installed to reroute traffic to Exit 36 NB, left on Old Stamford Rd, left on Route 15 SB to exit 35 Long Ridge Rd.

Route 15 (Merritt Parkway) Northbound Exit 35 On-Ramp:
Ramp will be closed between the hours of 8:00 PM and 6:00 AM, Thursday, September 8, 2016.  A complete detour will be installed to reroute traffic to Route 15 SB, Exit 34 Long Ridge Rd, left on Long Ridge, right on Route 15 NB.

Rep. Floren Attends Greenwich Public Schools’ Convocation

Rep. Livvy Floren recently joined teachers, administrators and local and state officials at Greenwich High School’s performing arts center for the annual public schools convocation. The event featured remarks from GHS student government leader Joseph Magliocco, Dr. Sarah Goldin, Carol Sutton, interim Superintendent Sal Corda, Deputy Superintendent Anne Carabillo and Board of Education chair Laura Erickson.

Please click here for a more detailed report from the Greenwich Free Press.


CT Emergency Alerts: There’s an App For That

I am proud to share with you a new mobile app that has been launched to provide Connecticut residents with emergency alerts and other useful resources. The app, called CTPrepares, can be downloaded for FREE from the iTunes Apple Store for Apple devices and Google Play for Android devices.

The app allows residents to communicate with family members during an emergency and provides real-time notifications including emergency news, state office closings, public safety messages and up-to-the-minute information for residents. It also locates Connecticut Emergency Management contacts and provides emergency preparation guides.

For a guide on how to use the app, please click here to open a PDF instruction packet.

Sales Tax Free Week, August 21-27

With the start of school just around the corner, I wanted to remind you to take advantage of the upcoming “Tax Free Week” which runs from Sunday, August 21st through Saturday, August 27th.

This one-week event eliminates Connecticut’s 6.35 percent sales tax on clothing and footwear costing less than $100 per item.

Additionally, new and used college textbooks are exempt from the state 6.35% sales tax for students who present a valid college ID at the time of purchase.

Since sales tax is calculated after the use of any coupons or discounts, if the final price is less than $100, the sale is exempt from taxes. Clothing or footwear under $100 put on layaway is also tax-free.

Please note: This benefit has been substantially reduced from previous years and will only apply to clothing and footwear that costs less than $100.

Tax Free Week was first enacted in 2000, and applies to most clothing and footwear purchases intended for everyday use.

Goods not covered under the program include, but are not limited to:

  • Clothing or footwear specifically designed for athletic activities: football cleats, specialty boots for fishing, hiking, skiing and other activities, as well as wet suits, helmets and headbands, etc.
  • Accessories: jewelry, handbags, luggage, umbrellas, wallets, watches, etc.

Please consult with your local retailer, or contact the Department of Revenue Services for a full list of qualifying and non-qualifying items.

NEW Photo License Center Hours for Stamford, State

Recently, the Connecticut DMV announced that several photo licensing centers, including Stamford, will have their hours of operation changed.

The Stamford office hours will change to 7:45 a.m. through 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday and Friday only, effective August 16, 2016.


The new schedules are below:

Location                     New Customer Hours

Derby                         7:45 -4:30 Wed. & Friday

Middletown                 7:45 -4:30 Wed. & Friday      

Milford                        7:45 -4:30 Tues & 9:15- 6 Thurs.

Stamford                     7:45 -4:30 Wed. & Friday

A special Founder’s Day ceremony at Greenwich Point – Greenwich Time

From the Greenwich Time, 7/19/16,

GREENWICH — The annual celebration of Greenwich’s founding came this year with a special dedication: a plaque marking the 376-year-old event attached now to a rock at Greenwich Point.

The celebration Monday was a reminder of how the past intersects with the present, guest speakers told an audience of about 50 who braved heat and wind at the point to help honor the town’s history.

“Sometimes we forget, with too much enthusiasm for tomorrow, what and who came before us,” said Davidde Strackbein, chair of the Greenwich Historical Society and master of ceremonies for the celebration.

“We throw away the past and lose a sense of community and with it a sense of belonging and a kinship in all our history as a people,” she said, while relating immigrant stories that helped shape the town. “We are witness to a time, even now, that will never come again and we should not waste it. We should cherish it and preserve it as we have done today.”

The town’s founding event is recognized as the purchase of a swath of land in eastern Greenwich by Daniel Patrick and Robert and Elizabeth Feake on July 18, 1640 for 25 coats. (Only 11 of the coats were actually produced, and the Siwanoy Indians who occupied the land viewed the trade as a rental agreement, not sale, one of several factors that set Greenwich up for a tumultuous beginning.)

The bronze plaque, mounted on a large rock on a bluff overlooking Long Island Sound, features a replica of the deed for the purchase.

State Rep. Livvy Floren, R-149th, read the deed and gave way to attendees who shared memories of the importance of Greenwich Point in their lives. Among those was Selectman John Toner, who spoke of coming down to the beach area with his family and friends for breakfast and a swim. He said his parents would never let him swim after breakfast, so he would jump up and down on a rock marked 1640, which he never knew it marked the town’s founding until he saw it again as an adult.

“Kids will come and look (at the plaque) and their parents will tell them about it, but you only know about age through age,” Toner said. “They’ll come back as adults and say, ‘Yeah, this is where it all started.’ It’s good to be here.”

First Selectman Peter Tesei noted that the Elizabeth Feake eventually owned what is now most of Old Greenwich. The fact that it was rare for a woman to be the sole owner of property at that time showed Greenwich’s progressive nature from the start, he said.

Strackbein said what had once been “old paper and deadly stuff from the deadly past buried in the recesses of Town Hall” could now be seen every day on the bluff.

The plaque, which was created for last year’s 375th anniversary, also contains the town’s coat of arms from 1940: a windmill for the town’s early Dutch influence; a horse’s head for Horseneck, the name by which most of Greenwich (except for Old Greenwich) was once known; a plow for the agricultural history of the founders; a ship from the coat of arms of Greenwich, England; and a clam shell to represent the early maritime trade in the town.

The audience included representatives from several preservationist groups, including the Friends of Greenwich Point, the Greenwich Point Conservancy and the Greenwich Tree Conservancy. Also on hand were former First Selectman Richard Bergstresser, town Director of Parks and Recreation Joseph Siciliano and some descendants of the town’s founding families.

State Rep. Fred Camillo, R-151st, discussed some of the notable people who lived in Greenwich, including titans of industry, celebrities, pro athletes and President George H.W. Bush.

Camillo also spoke of skirmishes in the Revolutionary War, the famous art colony in Cos Cob, the fact that the Boy Scouts of America was partially founded here and the once-considered idea of making Greenwich home to the United Nations.

“All that for 25 coats,” Camillo said.


Celebratory Dinner Honors David Ormsby for Ten Years of Leadership of the Witherell Board – Greenwich Free Press

Celebratory Dinner Honors David Ormsby for Ten Years of Leadership of the Witherell Board


David and Lindsay Ormsby. Contributed photo

In an evening that included bagpipe music, toasts, roasts, and proclamations from the State of Connecticut and the Town of Greenwich, David G. Ormsby was honored recently for his outstanding leadership of The Nathaniel Witherell Board of Directors.

The celebratory dinner was hosted by the Friends of Nathaniel Witherell at Greenwich Country Club.

Ormsby stepped down from Witherell’s Board this past January after being on the Board since 2004 and serving as its Chairman for the last 10 years.

Among his accomplishments, Mr. Ormsby helped raise millions of dollars to modernize and refurbish the Nathaniel Witherell as co-chair of Witherell’s Project Renew (January 2013 to July 2014).

He continues to serve as Chairman of the Friends of Nathaniel Witherell Board, which he helped establish in 2006.

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Standing left to right: Polly Longsworth, Peter Ormsby, Nick Kavanagh, Diane and Tom Smith, Ann Kenyon, and Chuck Longsworth. Sitting left to right: Debby Ormsby, Lindsay and David Ormsby, Cameron Ormsby, and Mark Kenyon.

“David Ormsby’s dedication to The Nathaniel Witherell is legendary and will be long remembered by the people of Greenwich,” noted Karen Sadik-Khan, President of the Friends of the Nathaniel Witherell, in her remarks. “The Friends Board, the Witherell Board, and the Town of Greenwich all thank David for his role in keeping The Nathaniel Witherell a part of our lives.”

Sadik-Khan announced to the 120 guests in attendance that in honor of Ormsby’s accomplishments, the Witherell’s Resident Life Fund will be officially renamed the David G. Ormsby Resident Life Fund, which will continue to provide programs and services to enrich the lives of all Witherell residents. Fittingly, proceeds from the dinner will support the fund.

Among the many items the Fund supports are: annual events and parties such as the July 4th and New Year’s Eve celebrations, weekly live performances by local musicians, music therapy programs for Alzheimer’s and dementia residents, painting and art history classes, volunteer services, Greenwich Chaplaincy services, organized outings, and pet therapy programs including the quarterly “Pooches on Parade.”

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Left to right: Friends of Nathaniel Witherell Board Member Ginny Gray, Connecticut State Representative Livvy Floren, Marie Norton and Art Norton, Vice Chairman of the Greenwich BET.

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Left to right: Larry Simon, Witherell Board Chair, with Robbie and Albert Kestnbaum.

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Left to right: Friends of Nathaniel Witherell Board Members Debby Lash and Fred Li with Judy Evnin.

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Walter Raquet, Friends of Nathaniel Witherell Board Member Sabrina Raquet, and Witherell Board Vice Chair and Friends of Nathaniel Witherell President Karen Sadik-Khan.

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Lash, Greenwich BET Budget Committee Chair, and Friends of Nathaniel Witherell Board Member Alma Rutgers.

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Left to right: Jan Marchand, David Ormsby, and Don Marchand.

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Davidde and Ron Strackbein.

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Friends of Nathaniel Witherell Board Member Bea Crumbine presents a proclamation from the State of Connecticut to David Ormsby.

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Witherell Board Vice Chair and Friends of Nathaniel Witherell President Karen Sadik-Khan presents a plaque to David Ormsby announcing that the Resident Life Fund has been renamed the David G. Ormsby Resident Life Fund.

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Rep. Floren Comments on Bond Commission Items

Rep. Livvy Floren offered praise for several items during a July meeting of the legislature’s Bond Commission in Hartford.  Her remarks, some on behalf of colleagues who were unable to attend in person, reflect her commitment to investments to better the community and the state.


Bonding to Get Our State Back on Track

In the wake of recent downgrades by two credit rating agencies of the state’s General Obligation (GO) paper, the bond package (SB 503), which was supported unanimously in the House and 34-2 in the Senate, took a necessary new path. I have always believed that bonding is an investment for the future of our state, and while we did cut nearly $1 billion in borrowing—we still managed to provide a mechanism for advancing proven projects in a timely, cost effective manner. Our bonding subcommittee conducted three full days of meetings with departmental commissioners—legislative members were present, prepared, attentive and alert…as were members of our professional support staff.

In these dire economic times—it is always darkest before pitch black—the subcommittee was steadfastly optimistic and remained fiscally responsible. The line items included in the bond bill are authorizations which can be thought of as enabling legislation. Authorizations include school construction, municipal aid in the form of Town Aid Road, STEAP and Urban Act grants, housing, environmental initiatives, economic development programs, and pools of money to help subsidize the work of nonprofit organizations. However, to become monies spent, the items must be allocated or approved by the State Bond Commission. This legislation is a real time road map that defines what could be accomplished with bond funds…both the possible and probable.

Although there is still much work to be done, this plan gets Connecticut going in the right fiscal direction while meeting the goals of the bonding subcommittee: accountability, transparency and prioritization. This was a truly bipartisan effort that created a thoughtful and needs-driven document.