Monthly Archives: July 2013

St. Francis Changes Course, Funds Program For Expectant Mothers Month-To-Month

Some hospitals say that changes in federal and state funding are forcing them to make tough choices.  In Hartford, St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center recently decided to cut funding for a city infant mortality program.
But as WNPR’s Jeff Cohen reports, the hospital has apparently had a change of heart.

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WNPR On NPR: How A Family Copes With Schizophrenia And Suicide

Homer Bell's family: sister Laura Bell (from left), sister Regina Bell, mother Rosalind Scott and stepfather Jack Wilcox. (Jeff Cohen/WNPR)

Homer Bell’s family: sister Laura Bell (from left), sister Regina Bell, mother Rosalind Scott and stepfather Jack Wilcox. (Jeff Cohen/WNPR)

Homer Bell was 54 years old when he killed himself in April in a very public way — he laid down his head in front of a stopped bus in his hometown of Hartford, Conn. It was the last act in a life filled with struggle, as Bell and his family endured his schizophrenia.

Here’s the story.

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Trude Mero, Hartford Activist, Dies

A champion of the city of Hartford has died.  WNPR’s Jeff Cohen reports.

Here’s the story.

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Drive Drunk, Lose Your Job — Keep Your Unemployment Pay

Should you be able to collect unemployment if lose your job because you were driving drunk?  WNPR’s Jeff Cohen has this story from the Connecticut Supreme Court.

Here’s the story.

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At Hartford City Hall, What’s It Mean To Leave Your Job?

For those not keeping up, Jared Kupiec used to be the chief of staff for Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra.  And he’s the one who took heat for the administration as it dealt with claims that it was not exactly miserly. (See: caviar, police gym, raises)

Kupiec resigned in June.  Then, last week, we learned that after he turned in things like his city-issued iPad and phone, he kept his city-issued car.  That’s right.  The guy who took the heat for an administration’s excess leaves a parting gift of excess. That ticked off Segarra.  Police are investigating.

Now there’s this:  The Courant and Brookman have reported that Kupiec got a payout for unused vacation time and other things (about $36,000).  And they report he’ll have a relationship with the city until Sept. 27.  It’s a policy called a “runout,” and Segarra has wanted to get rid of it because it’s a waste of money.

But what’s a “runout”?  The answer is complicated.  It’s an old city policy that allows people to keep health insurance, get paid for holidays, and accrue vacation time until the date on which the employee’s last day of work would have come — had he not gotten a lump sum payout. So, in short, while Kupiec no longer works for the city, he still has a financial relationship with it.

So here’s my question.  As police try to figure out whether to charge Kupiec with a crime, does his status with the city complicate their case?

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Should Your Mayor Also Have A Vote On The Board Of Education?

Cities and towns across the state wrestle with a common question — how much power should a mayor have over the city’s schools? As WNPR’s Jeff Cohen reports, it’s a debate that is going to a public vote in Hartford this November.

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Hartford’s Segarra Looks Forward, Harassed By Past

News broke last week that a former confidant of Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra kept his city car after he left his job.  Now, as WNPR’s Jeff Cohen reports, police say they’re still investigating and the city council is calling for an audit.

Here’s the story.

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