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    Office Of The Mayor
    Mayor's Monday Message

    Dear Friends,

    I am pleased to announce that the Connecticut Department of Transportation approved funding for the Ferry Street Bridge last week, making it possible for construction to begin soon. I look forward to seeing this important city corridor connecting Fair Haven citizens to the surrounding area reopen. Many thanks to all of the concerned residents and legislators who helped to expedite this project. The Connecticut DOT has begun advertising for contractors, who will be given a tour of the site next week. By March 15, the contactor bids will be submitted, the best offer will be selected, and construction can begin.

    As I am sure you all know, we are coming into tax season. Preparing your taxes can often be a confusing and bewildering task, but this doesn’t need to be the case. Here in City Hall, we’re doing what we can to simplify the process.

    As you may have heard, City Hall is partnering with the New Haven Economic Security Coalition again this year to institute the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. This excellent program provides low-to-moderate wage earners with free assistance in preparing their taxes. Hundreds of New Haven residents participated in the program last year, receiving an average of $1,700 in tax refunds each. If you or anyone you know qualifies for this program, please call Infoline at 211 or the Community Action Agency at (203) 848-6947 x213 to set up an appointment. The tax preparation meetings will take place in six different locations around the city.

    Looking ahead, there will be a tax information workshop for individuals with disabilities and their families on Tuesday, March 7 at 5:30 p.m. The workshop will be taught by Armand Legault, a former audit supervisor of the Connecticut Department of Revenue. I’d like to encourage anyone who files taxes as a dependent or with disabilities to attend this workshop. By the time you leave the workshop, you should know how to claim all the tax deductions you deserve. Registration is required, so if you are interested, please call (203) 946-7833 or TTY (203) 946-8582.

    Let's take a look at the week ahead:

    Tuesday, February 21

    Learn how to save money on your energy bill for free - workshop #1

    11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

    East Shore Senior Center

    415 Townsend Ave.

    Fuel costs are at an all-time high, raising the cost of heating the average household an estimated $350 this year. In light of this, the United Illuminated Company has teamed up with a number of other groups, including City Hall, to offer classes in how to reduce consumption and save money on electric bills for senior citizens, CAA energy assistance recipients, and low- to moderate-income members of the general public. If you would be interested in attending one of these classes, please call (203) 562-0598. Attendees are encouraged to bring their most recent heating and electric bills.

    Welch Annex School students start CMT Vacation Camp

    Tuesday-Friday

    As New Haven schools empty for winter recess, the elementary students at Welch Annex School will meet up to work on tricks to help them relax and focus during the upcoming Connecticut Mastery Test. The camp will also be packed with fun activities, such as learning how to cook.

    Wednesday, February 22

    Free energy conservation workshop #2

    5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

    New Haven Home Ownership Center

    333 Sherman Ave.

    The United Illuminating Company will be sponsoring another energy conservation workshop. As above, please call (203) 562-0598 to register for the class.

    Thanks for reading my Monday Message. I hope you have a happy and healthy week.

    Very truly yours,

    John DeStefano, Jr.

    Mayor


    [2/20/2006]


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