Residents have holiday 'lunch with the mayor'
By Frances Taylor - Staff Writer
East Hartford - posted Fri., Dec. 16, 2011
About 40 town residents joined Mayor Marcia Leclerc for a year-end “Lunch with the Mayor," held in the mayor's office on Dec. 15. The regularly-scheduled meetings have provided residents with an opportunity to speak with the mayor one-on-one to ask questions and raise concerns.
Leclerc took the opportunity to talk to residents about the town response to the October snow storm. “We were among the first five communities to achieve 99 percent power restoration after the storm," Leclerc said, adding that debris removal by town crews aided the response by CL& P, and noting that some towns still had trees and branches waiting to be picked up weeks after the storm. “Our town employees did a phenomenal job," she said.
Resident Lester Yarnell pointed out that there are still many hanging phone lines left by the storm. Leclerc said that in places where hanging wires are still an issue, residents should call the town with the location.
Lt. Curt Stoldt, public information officer for the East Hartford Police Department, was invited by the mayor to speak about some concerns that were raised by residents in previous meetings. Stoldt discussed a federal program called “secure communities," which identifies people who may be illegal aliens when they are arrested for a crime and fingerprinted.
“The fingerprints are sent to an FBI data base, and we can know in minutes if the person is wanted for other crimes, and if they may be here illegally," Stoldt said, noting that immigration issues are handled by the ICE, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which operates at the federal level.
Residents also expressed concern about the speed of traffic at the Roberts Street exit on I-84. “Sometimes the traffic is moving very fast, and though that is not our jurisdiction, I have passed the information on to Troop H of the state police," Stoldt said. “Even when these things are not in our jurisdiction, we still try to help by getting residents the information."
Leclerc also announced the retirement of senior secretary Carol Noel, on Dec. 30, after 27 years. “Carol has been one of those employees who goes above and beyond, and we wish her the best," she said.