Sound Bites: Veterans protest removal of POW/MIA flag
Good morning. Chesire, Connecticut veterans are protesting the removal of a POW/MIA flag from town property.
The flag was removed in June as part of the new town policy to not fly any flags besides the United States, Connecticut or town flag on government property. The POW/MIA flag can only be flown on town property designated as veteran memorials.
Chesire officials say they implemented the flag policy to protect the town from unnecessary lawsuits. In the past, they banned LGBTQ+ Pride flags from being flown. Officials had said town flagpoles were not forums for free expression.
Protestors are calling for more transparency from their officials since the flag policy was passed by a resolution without a public hearing.
Here’s a bite-sized look at what else we are hearing:
Nassau County Police arrested more Black and Latino residents than their white neighbors, according to a report from Long Island United, a group that tracked arrests in Nassau last year. The report found that Black people were arrested more than five times, and Latinos twice, the rate of whites last year. County lawmakers said they will review the report with the police. This week, Long Island United asked lawmakers for better oversight of the police department before making funding decisions.
Seven former Yale fertility clinic patients are suing the university for being operated on without sufficient pain medication. Over 70 patients undergoing surgery were supposed to receive fentanyl to alleviate pain during the procedures. Instead, they were administered shots of water, causing excruciating pain during the operations. In 2020, a Yale nurse stole the contents of hundreds of fentanyl vials and switched them with water.
A Commack man was indicted for illegally smuggling dead protected butterflies into the country. Charles Limmer allegedly trafficked over $200,000 worth of shipments of wildlife over the last year. To conceal the scheme, Limmer labeled the shipments as origami paper craft and wall decorations. This would violate the Lacey Act, which prohibits the falsely labeling and trafficking of wildlife. He faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted.
Bridgeport’s City Council Budget Committee plans to improve absentee balloting supervision for November's elections. This is amid incumbent Mayor Joe Ganim and his opponent, John Gomes, accusing each other of voting fraud during the Democratic mayoral primary in September. The committee wants to leverage emergency municipal funding to cover improvement costs and to hire temporary staff. City officials hope to prohibit political candidates from influencing absentee ballot voters directly and have voters monitored by neutral coordinators overseen by registrars.
North Hempstead Deputy Town Supervisor Joseph Scalero was cleared of harassment and retaliation complaints. In 2022, former town purchasing director Moira LaBarbera accused Scalero of violating the town’s anti-harassment policy after he asked her: “Do you have a dog whistle, can you make her roll over too?” The complaint was cleared for being “without merit.” LaBarbera has since resigned from her position, calling the town government a hostile and retaliatory work environment.
Comtech Telecommunications was awarded two U.S. Army contracts totaling $593 million. Under the contract, the Huntington, New York-based defense manufacturer will provide onsite professional engineering services, communications and IT infrastructure support for the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and NATO. Cometch received a $48.6 million contract last week to develop multi-carrier modems to support the Army’s satellite communications.
UConn’s School of Nursing received a record breaking $40 million donation last week. This is the largest donation the university has ever received. Elisabeth DeLuca, a UConn alumni and widow of Subway founder Frederick DeLuca, made the donation and hopes it will inspire others to invest in challenging nursing education programs. The university will use the donation to fund scholarships, nursing programs, and the construction of a new state-of-the-art facility in Storrs.