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2013 in Review: The Year's Most Important Government Stories

A look back at the stories that mattered most to Newtowners in 2013.

Note: Our year-in-review series covers the most relevant stories of 2013 in Newtown town government.

School Budget Passes On Third Attempt (June 4): School advocates put a strong social media and street presence to work to approve the $71 million budget, a 3.93% increase from 2012-2013. The $39 million town budget passed on the second attempt.

Ordinance Details New Rules for Shooting (Sept. 10): A series of heavily attended meetings led to a new ordinance for recreational shooting in Newtown. Shooting is now limited to four hours at a time and shooters must notify police beforehand.

Sandy Hook School Referendum Passes in Landslide (Oct. 5): After town officials supported a plan to destroy and rebuild Sandy Hook Elementary School, most Newtown residents voted to support the $50 million, state-funded project. A new elementary school is expected to take shape in 2016.

New Commission Will Shape Sandy Hook Memorial (Oct. 31): At the first meeting of the 12/14 Memorial Commission, the group agreed to "make a recommendation for a permanent memorial that remembers, honors and celebrates those who died and serves to provide comfort and hope to those who loved them." The group includes local designers, nonprofit leaders and family members of 12/14 victims.

Election Presents (Mostly) Returning Faces (Nov. 5): Two new faces joined the Board of Education, and former State Representative candidate Lisa Romano joined the Legislative Council, but most Newtown boards and councils remained mostly the same. A low turnout was blamed on an uncontested Board of Selectmen makeup.

No Eminent Domain for Sandy Hook School Project (Dec. 19): The town's Legislative Council unanimously agreed using eminent domain to destroy a house and build a driveway to the future Sandy Hook Elementary School was a bad idea. Officials said they would continue negotiations, though.
Paul Alexander December 31, 2013 at 09:25 AM
2013 is over. Instead of looking backwards how about looking forwards to the most important and compelling government issue that faces the town and the state...rising municipal and state spending in a world of falling tax revenues from existing sources...which is going to lead to increasingly ridiculous and desperate measures to hunt for tax revenue from new sources. Oh, and ANOTHER record busting Connecticut state tax increase once Danny boy is safely re-elected.

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