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    Dear Friends

    As the winter months continue to bring about colder weather, many families will struggle to cover the costs of heating their homes. Please remember that the City’s Livable City Initiative and the Fire Department have teamed up to keep residents safe during the winter month by helping to educate the community about the dangers of alternative heating sources. If you can’t afford to pay your utility bills to heat your home or if you rent and your landlord has not provided heat of 65 degrees or more, there are resources out there to help you. If you are experience challenges with heating your home due to faulty equipment or lack of funds this winter, please reach out to one of the following resources for assistance:


    Community Action Agency, 781 Whalley Avenue, New Haven, CT 06511

    Phone: 203-387-7700 www.communityactionpartnership.com


    Southern Connecticut Gas Company, 855 Main Street, 8th Floor, Bridgeport, CT 06604 Phone: 1-800-659-8299 – Customer Service and Hardship Program



    United Illuminating Company, P.O. Box 1564, New Haven, CT 06506-0901

    Phone: 203-499-3333 – Customer Service and Hardship Program

    1-877-947-3873 - Weatherization Program & CT Energy Efficient Program


    To make a complaint of No Heat, residents can call 203-946-8683 or 203-946-7090 Monday – Friday between the hours of 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. For after-hour complaints, Holidays and weekends the contact number is 203-946-6327.

    Ban the Box

    Today, alongside the Board of Aldermen, I announced the City’s support of “Banning the Box.” Nine members of the New Haven Board of Aldermen have submitted an ordinance amendment prohibiting unfair discrimination in City hiring policies against persons previously convicted of a crime. Known commonly as the “Ban the Box” ordinance, this legislation would provide a mechanism to ensure that persons and businesses supplying goods and/or services to the City of New Haven have adopted and employ fair hiring policies and practices that are consistent with the city’s goal of removing obstacles to the employment of persons with prior convictions. The City sees this as a crime prevention mechanism as it helps to remove barriers from the path of individuals with prior convictions so that they can achieve legal employment and begin a positive path in life. For more information on this initiative, please read the “Why Ban the Box?” fact sheet on the City’s website: www.cityofnewhaven.com.

    Atwater Seniors Learn More about the Switch to Digital Television

    Over the past months there has been much talk about the national switch to Digital Television (DTV). The City of New Haven wants to ensure that all residents are well-informed about the switch and are well-prepared for the switch. This Thursday at 11 a.m. I will hold an informational event for seniors at the Atwater Senior Center. I encourage all residents to join me as I explain what the switch from analog TV to DTV means and as I discuss the resources that will be made available to help all residents with the switch. If you are unable to attend this event or would like more information, please visit http://www.dtv.gov/.

    Menorah Lighting

    This Sunday at 5:30 p.m. we will celebrate our annual tradition of lighting the Menorah on the Green. Please join us for this kick-off to Hanukkah!

    Here’s what’s happening in New Haven Public Schools this Week:

    Monday, December 15, 2008, 9:00 - 10:30 A.M, AND 6:00 -7:00 p.m. Fair Haven K-8 School, 164 Grand Ave., A Chain Reaction… Of Kindness & Compassion Which Will… Motivate, Educate and Activate through “Rachel’s Challenge,” Fair Haven students and the community will experience powerful audio/video footage of Rachel's Challenge during a one-hour school presentation and workshop that motivates them to positive changes in the way they treat others. In the evening everyone will have the opportunity to “sign on’ to a positive year long pledge. The program is based on an essay written by Rachel Joy Scott, one of the first students killed at Columbine High School on April 20, 1999. For more information on Rachel’s Challenge, Please visit: www.rachelschallenge.com. Any questions please contact Rosalie Carr & Lorraine Budnick, Fair Haven School 691-2600

    Wednesday, December 17, 2008, 7:00 P.M.: First & Summerfield United Methodist Church, Corner of College and Elm Streets, New Haven Cooperative Arts and Humanities Magnet High School Choral & Strings Departments Winter Fest 2008; Tickets

    $ 5.00 in advance/ $7.00 at the door.

    Wednesday, DECEMBER 17, 2008, 7:00 t0 8:30 pm: Hill Regional Career Magnet HS, 140 Legion Avenue, New Haven, -- Holiday Concert -- Hill Regional Music Classes and Hill Regional Choir.

    Thursday, December 18, 2008, 7:00 t0 8:00 pm: Yale Center for British Art, 1080 Chapel Street, New Haven Hill Regional Career Magnet HS Choir.

    THURSDAY, DECEMBER 18, 2008, 6:30 P.M.: Cooperative Arts & Humanities High School Auditorium, 444 Orange Street, Cooperative Arts High School Band, Patrick Smith-Director Winterfest Concert, $5.00 in advance/$6.00 at the door.

    Monday, Dec. 22 & Tuesday, Dec. 23, 10 am: Davis Street School, 35 Davis St., Sights and Sounds of the Season Extravaganza, Grades Pre-School through 2 and Grades 3-5. This year’s two-day event heralds the spirit of the season with melodies and verse of international flair. Hanukkah, Christmas, Las Posadas, Kwanzaa and more are among the holidays showcased with talented students and staff. Included in the festivities will be special presentations by the Davis Street 21st Century Band conducted by Maestro William Fluker and the Davis Street String Ensemble under the direction of our talented violin instructor, Lisa Woodard.

    I hope you have a happy and healthy week!

    Very truly yours,

    John DeStefano, Jr.



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