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Wednesday, January 17 News

Community Channel: Library earns 5-star status, Lavielle’s perfect voting record...

The Westport Library, for the third straight year, has earned Five-Star Library status from Library Journal, the nation’s premier publication for libraries. This annual ranking is a reflection of how a public library is used by its community. Less than 1 percent of the nation’s 9,100 public libraries received Five-Star status.

The star rating is determined by ranking libraries on a per capita basis on how many times they are visited each year, how many people attend programs, the number of sessions logged on library computers and how many items are borrowed. The data are collected from local libraries annually by state library agencies and compiled nationally by the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

In Westport, more than 1,000 people walk through its doors daily. Each year, they host roughly 2,000 programs for the community, most free of charge.

State Rep. Gail Lavielle, R-143, achieved a 100 percent voting record for all roll call votes taken on the floor of the state House of Representatives during both the 2017 regular session and the special session, which did not end until Nov. 15.

According to data released by the House clerk’s office, she cast every one of the 417 roll call votes called this year.

Perfect attendance and voting is difficult to achieve and only one third of Lavielle’s legislative colleagues were able to attain it this year.

Lavielle represents the 143rd district, which includes parts of Norwalk, Westport, and Wilton. She is the ranking member of the General Assembly’s Education Committee and a member of the Finance, Revenue, and Bonding and the Transportation committees.

The next regular session of the General Assembly will convene in February.

The Westport Police Department Local Union #2080 and the Police Benevolent Association will be hosting their annual holiday toy drive, which provides toys for underprivileged children throughout Fairfield County and beyond.

Westport police officers will accept new, unopened, and unwrapped toys, as well as cash donations, in the parking lot of ASF Sports & Outdoors, 1560 Post Road East, Dec. 9, 10, 16, and 17 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

In the case of inclement weather, call the Westport Police Department at 203-341-6000 or check with the local news services. Should the weather not allow a trip to ASF on any one of those days, the donations can be brought to the Westport Police Department as soon as conditions allow.

Collection boxes will also be set up through Dec. 17:

Westport Police Department, 50 Jesup Road, 24 hours a day

Westport Town Hall, 110 Myrtle Ave., Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

ASF Sports & Outdoors, 1560 Post Road East, Sunday 11 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Thursday 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m., and other days 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Renato’s Jewelers, 1765 Post Road East, Monday-Wednesday 8 a.m.-3 p.m., Thursday-Friday 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

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Questions can be directed to Sgt. Jill Ruggiero at jruggiero@westportct.gov or 203-341-6000.

The Department of Human Services’ annual Holiday Giving Program benefiting Westport residents is underway.

Following established guidelines for Westport’s Warm-Up Fund eligibility, the Human Services Department serves largely as a facilitator, allowing Westport residents who wish to give to do so, while protecting the confidentiality of both the donor and receiver.

Some of the most appreciated gifts are grocery and gas gift cards of any amount, as well as gift cards to local stores where residents may shop. In addition, cash donations are always welcome as they allow for the purchase of last minute gift cards for clients. Checks may be made payable to “DHS Family Programs” with “Holiday” on the memo line and may be mailed or dropped off in Room 200 at Town Hall (110 Myrtle Ave.). If a donor wishes to “shop” for a family’s actual gift requests, this can also be accommodated at whatever level the donor feels comfortable.

Westport residents and organizations who wish to donate to this effort are urged to contact Patty Haberstroh at hsyouth@westportct.gov or 341-1069 as soon as possible. In addition, families who feel they will need extra support during the coming holiday season should also contact the department at 341-1050.

The Fairfield Museum invites professional, serious amateur, and student photographers from Connecticut, New York, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts to participate in the IMAGES 2018 Juried Photography Show.

Submissions will be accepted from Dec. 1 through Jan. 22. IMAGES 2018 provides an excellent opportunity for artists to connect with prominent collectors, gallery owners, fellow photographers, and the public.

A jury of artists, photographers, and curators selects approximately 40 submitted photographs for exhibition in the IMAGES 2018 show, which will be on display at the Fairfield Museum and History Center from March 1 to April 15, 2018.

For rules and details, visitgogophotocontest.com/fairfieldmuseumimages2018.

The City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery is inviting submissions from artists 18 and over for a new exhibit at the Maritime Gallery entitled, “Worth a Thousand Words.”

The exhibit will run from Jan. 29 to May 11 at the gallery, located in the Maritime Parking Garage exhibit space in Norwalk.

Every picture tells a story — it can communicate to anyone in the world a complex idea with just a single image, no translation needed. The Maritime Garage Gallery is seeking work that captures how the artist would communicate their stories, emotions, concerns, memories, and ideas about life, nature, hope, world events, humanity, etc. into works of art. The exhibit will be curated by Nadia Martinez.

For online guidelines and submissions, go tonorwalkpark.org/callforart. Please email maritimegallery@norwalkpark.org with any questions. The deadline for submissions is Dec. 16.

The Westport Department of Human Services reminds seniors the department offers a list of middle and high school students willing to work small outdoor jobs such as raking leaves or shoveling walkways.

There is a suggested fee of $10 per hour.

Seniors needing assistance may contact the department at 203-341-1050.

Students interested in helping a senior and earning extra money can contact the department or email humansrv@westportct.gov. Students already registered for the program are requested to contact the department if they wish to remain on the list. Written permission from a parent or guardian is necessary.

Compact smart homes with elevators. A commute-busting high-speed ferry from Westport to Manhattan. A bike path connecting downtown to the Saugatuck train station. Out-of-the-way lots for self-parking driverless cars.

Welcome to Westport in the year 2067.

A new exhibit, 06880+50, brings together the the innovative imaginings of a select group of Westport architects at Westport Historical Society.

The participants range from independent architects to members of large firms and include works from David Adam Realty, Inc., Peter Cadoux Architects, Robert Cohen, Roger Ferris & Partners, Michael Greenberg & Associates, Juresko Herman, Frederick William Hoag, John Jones, Dierdra O’Farrelly, Leigh Overland, Roundtree Architects, Sellars Lathrop Architects, Scott Springer, Robert Storm and Vita Design Group.

The exhibit runs through Dec. 31.

PaintCare, a no-fee paint recycling program, will be available to Westport residents at the Westport Transfer Station.

Residents may take advantage of this program by bringing latex paint, oil-based paint, primer, stain, sealer, varnish and shellac (no spray paint) to the Westport Transfer station, 300 Sherwood Island Connector, Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and Saturday from 7 a.m. to noon.

There is no charge for recycling paint at the Transfer Station site for Westport residents, nor are any local tax dollars expended. The program is funded by a PaintCare Fee of 75 cents per gallon, which is added to the purchase price of paint sold in Connecticut. This fee is used to fund all aspects of the PaintCare stewardship program. Collected fees pay for paint collection, transportation, recycling, public outreach and program administration.

The addition of this program to the town’s recycling efforts is expected to reduce annual hazardous waste processing by $3,000 to $4,000 annually.

The paint dropped off at the transfer station is packed into large, plastic-lined boxes and transported to PaintCare’s facility. If possible, the paint is recycled into new paint. If not, it may be turned into fuel or used to make another product.

PaintCare Inc. is a nonprofit organization established by paint manufacturers to plan and operate paint-recycling programs in states that have passed paint stewardship laws. Connecticut is one of only seven states in the country to pass the legislation.

Do you drive on the Merritt Parkway late at night or early in the morning between Fairfield and Westport? Then be prepared for some delays because of a $56.7 million project that won’t be finished until August 2019.

The project will focus on a five-mile stretch of the parkway between the Congress Street bridge in Fairfield to the Newtown Turnpike overpass in Westport.

The project will include new pavement in both the northbound lanes and work on 11 structures related to the historic bridges, built nearly 80 years ago.

There’s also upgrades planned for guiderails, drainage and restoration of the historic bridges. With all this work, lane closures are needed.

Northbound lane closures are planned from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. from Saturday to Wednesday and from 9 p.m. to 8 a.m. on Thursday and Friday.

Southbound lane closures are from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. Monday through Thursday; from 8 p.m. Friday to 8 a.m. Saturday and from 8 p.m. Saturday to 8 a.m. Sunday.

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