Bill Walbert

Recent Articles

League’s Voter Info Brochure To Go Out Soon; Seats up for Election on Selectmen, Town Council, Board of Ed

Officials with a nonprofit organization dedicated to voter education say they’re preparing to mail important information to New Canaan electors. This year’s “Know Your Representatives” brochure from the New Canaan League of Women Voters—listing all of New Canaan’s elected representatives, as well as local board and commission meeting times—has been underwritten by Bankwell, according to a media bulletin from the organization. It will go out April 17, according to the league. Seats are up for election this year on municipal bodies including the Board of Selectmen (three seats) and Town Council (six seats) and Board of Education (five seats). First Selectman Rob Mallozzi and Selectman Nick Williams, both Republicans, announced last month that they intend to seek a fourth term on the board. Continue Reading →

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PHOTOS: Christopher Lloyd Regales Waveny Park Conservancy, Supporters Ahead of Dec. 2 ‘Golden Gala’; Lloyds To Serve as Honorary Chairpersons

Christopher Lloyd on Wednesday night stepped toward the limestone fireplace in the grand hall of his childhood home in New Canaan, turned and told about 50 town residents gathered there that returning to Waveny House reminds him of his past. On this evening—a cocktail party hosted by the Waveny Park Conservancy to honor the organization’s founders and supporters, and kick off fundraising plans for 2017—the actor said he found himself thinking about “one particular incident” involving his father, Samuel R. Lloyd Jr.

“My father liked to have a cigar from time to time, and there was a humidor in that room, the billiard room,” he said, pointing past the staircase that New Canaanites for decades have climbed to reach the Recreation Department’s offices. “There’s still a billiard table in there, though for some reason it’s kind of dark. And there’s a humidor, and when I was seven, eight, nine years old, I became aware that it contained cigars, and I experimented. I kind of secreted one, went outside, lit it up. Continue Reading →

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‘I Will Not Be Harassed Nor Bullied’: Despite Acrimony, Town Council Votes To Create ‘Land Acquisition Fund’

Saying they felt bullied after fellow members of New Canaan’s legislative body took an unusual step to force a specific item onto their meeting agenda, two officers of the elected Town Council on Wednesday night abstained from voting on it. Ultimately, the Town Council voted 7-0 in favor of establishing a “land acquisition fund”—a state law-sanctioned vehicle that’s designed to allow New Canaan to purchase property and use it for open space, recreation or housing. Yet the Town Council’s secretary, Penny Young, and chairman, Bill Walbert, abstained from voting. Originally discussed in January after councilmen John Engel, Kevin Moynihan and Cristina A. Ross argued in favor of its immediate creation, the land acquisition fund item was to be taken up again in March, according to Young, under an agenda set by herself, together with Walbert and the Town Council’s vice chairman, Steve Karl. Under the Town Council’s own rules, if five members of the body sought to add it to the agenda for this month, they could have done so, according to Young. Continue Reading →

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New Canaan Community Foundation Hires New President and CEO

A prominent nonprofit organization in New Canaan announced this week that it’s hired a veteran of Washington, D.C. area community philanthropy as its new president and CEO. Lauren Stillwell Patterson will take the helm at the New Canaan Community Foundation on Oct. 26, officials said. According to a press release issued by Leo Karl III, chairman of NCCF’s board of directors, Patterson most recently served as director of programs at Washington Area Women’s Foundation—which serves women and girls in poverty—and “brings a wealth of experience, talent and enthusiasm” to the organization. A hub of giving and needs assessments in town that had developed a number of successful programs under immediate past leader Cynthia Gorey, NCCF controls a little more than $16 million, and for the last several years has distributed more than $1 million in annual grants. Continue Reading →

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Besieged by Complaints and Misinformation, ‘Merritt Village’ Developer Withdraws Offer To Restore Abutting Cemetery

Though they’d support another group’s efforts, the owners of a 3.3-acre parcel on the edge of downtown New Canaan said Tuesday that they’re withdrawing an offer to restore, plaque and protect an abutting, long-ignored and historically important cemetery after hearing complaints that its presence should disrupt the their widely discussed redevelopment plans. When they applied to the town in June to create 123 housing units on the Merritt Apartments property where 38 now exist, the property’s owners hired a consultant who determined that Ezra Benedict’s 1852-buit “Maple Street Cemetery” is one generation away from vanishing due to neglect. After running a sonar scan of the grounds and tracking down the heirs of 52 people buried there, property owner M2 Partners developed plans for rejuvenating the cemetery into a local landmark, with reset gravestones, family grouping and a plaque recognizing the remains of those interred with no headstone. “We were happy to do that and after the effort and time and the lack of consideration back to us of the applicant, we have withdrawn our offer of fencing it off, putting a plaque on it, putting a gate there and making sure it is not a ball field,” Arnold Karp of M2 Partners said during a subcommittee meeting of New Canaan’s legislative body. “So whatever the Historical Society or the group of New Canaan residents who feel it should be taken care of, we are in favor of that,” he said at the Town Council Subcommittee on Infrastructure and Utilities meeting, held at Town Hall. Continue Reading →

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