Public Works: Town Workers Here To Help Those Seeking To Use New ‘Swap Shop’ Apply for Transfer Station Permit Online

Town officials say residents seeking to use the recently launched Swap Shop at the Transfer Station can get help obtaining a permit for the facility in multiple ways. For New Canaanites unable to access or use the online system through the town’s website for a Transfer Station permit—a requirement to use the Swap Shop at the Lakeview Avenue facility—there are municipal workers ready to help. “If you can’t access it online, and perform it online, I have three people—one in my office, one in our special projects office and then Donnie Smith down at the Transfer Station—that will actually walk you through the process and help you fill it out online in front of him,” according to Tiger Mann. “We do ask that you have it only because we’re trying to make sure that the Station is used correctly and that we monitor goods coming and going,” Mann told members of the Conservation Commission at their regular meeting, held Feb. 9 at Town Hall and via videoconference. 

His comments came in response to remarks from Commissioner Ann Silvio, who said she’s seen chatter on Facebook about the “difficulty of getting a pass.”

Silvio noted that residents pay the same annual fee regardless of when during the fiscal year they purchase a pass.

Test Results Show ‘Slightly Elevated’ E. Coli Levels in Parts of New Canaan Waterways

A half-dozen bacteria data collection sites in three New Canaan rivers turned up slightly elevated levels of E. coli following tests that commenced this spring, officials said last week. 

The results could indicate nitrogen in the water supply, according to members of the New Canaan Conservation Commission. 

“I am not looking at these streams and rivers as drinking water supply, but I am looking at them from a wildlife and biodiversity standpoint and I am trying to get a better feel on, are they getting too much nitrogen in the water?” Commission Chair Chris Schipper said during the appointed body’s Aug. 13 meeting, held via videoconference. “I assume E. coli is also related to nitrogen. And are there other chemicals getting into the water supply?”

The Commission referred to data collection and water quality tests from Harbor Watch, part of Westport-based nonprofit organization Earthplace. The group presented to the Commission last spring. The town approved a total of $25,000 for the professional services in the Commission’s budget for the current fiscal year.

New Canaan Nature Center Appoints New Executive Director

After more than one year without a permanent employee at the helm, the New Canaan Nature Center on Monday afternoon announced that a longtime staff member will take on the role of executive director. Bill Flynn, most recently the Oenoke Ridge Road organization’s director of animal care & environmental educator, starts in the leadership role following a “comprehensive search and selection process,” according to Linda Andros, president of the Nature Center’s Board of Trustees. “He’s an accomplished naturalist with excellent communication and leadership skills,” Andros said in a press release. “We are confident that he will take the Nature Center to the next level while continuing to deliver on our core values of community, education, protection and preservation.”

Flynn, a resident on the town-owned property’s campus, came to the Nature Center in 2010 following a stint as naturalist and environmental science educator in Ohio and Southern California, according to the press release. He has earned degrees in Environmental, Population and Organismic Biology and Pre-Medicine from the University of Colorado, Boulder, it said.

Board President: New Leadership at New Canaan Nature Center

The New Canaan Nature Center has named a member of its Board of Trustees as interim executive director, officials say. Town resident Mary Emerson is a “seasoned management and fundraising professional” has stepped in voluntarily to help steer the Oenoke Ridge Road nonprofit organization as it pursues a new strategic plan, Board President Linda Andros told “She is experienced in high-quality cultural and educational institutions,” Andros said. A Harvard graduate who completed doctorate-level course studies in art history from New York University, Emerson went on to hold positions at the Met and Frick in New York City, and the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, according to her resumé. More recently, she has served as executive director of the American School of Classical Studies in Princeton, N.J., and part-time as executive director of a nonprofit organization that raises funds for a college in Winchester, England.

Letter: Conservation Commission Marks Passing of Andrew Clarkson

To the Editor,

All of us on the New Canaan Conservation Commission were sorry to hear about Andrew Clarkson’s recent passing. His philanthropic activities, as administered through the Jeniam Foundation, have always provided the right help at the right time, and his strong dedication to conservation and community enhancement has been extremely beneficial to our town. Thanks to support from the Jeniam Foundation, the Conservation Commission was able to procure our most recent Open Space Map for the Town of New Canaan, and the Foundation has always been open to listening to our plans and initiatives. On behalf of all us, and of the town in which we serve, we thank Andrew for his many years of wise generosity. Sincerely,

Cam Hutchins—Chairman

Susan Sweitzer—Secretary

Linda Andros, Heather Lauver and Robin O’Connell—Commissioners