City making house calls to honor couples married 50 years or more
WEST HAVEN, Jan. 7, 2021 — For the past three decades, the city has honored West Haven couples who have been married for at least 50 years with a Valentine’s Day party featuring entertainment, dancing and refreshments.
And this year is no different — well, a little — with the city’s Valentine’s Day tradition continuing despite the coronavirus pandemic, Mayor Nancy R. Rossi announced.
Without skipping a beat, the city will play Cupid for the 31st straight year by holding an alternative event that celebrates the holiday of love from the safety of couples’ homes.
On Feb. 12, Rossi will recognize those sweethearts who have reached the half-century mark and beyond with a congratulatory gift delivered to their homes.
West Haven couples wishing to participate must RSVP to the Department of Elderly Services at 203-937-3635 or 203-627-1382 by Feb. 8.
Rossi releases statement on injured West Haven police officers
WEST HAVEN, Jan. 7, 2021 — Mayor Nancy R. Rossi has released a statement on the two city police officers who were injured in Wednesday morning’s carjacking incident that ended at Campbell Avenue and Spring Street.
Read the Statement.
Health director encourages city residents to test homes for radon
WEST HAVEN, Jan. 7, 2021 — January is National Radon Action Month, and city Health Director Maureen B. Lillis is encouraging residents to protect their health by testing their homes for radon, the second-leading cause of lung cancer.
Radon is a colorless, odorless and naturally occurring radioactive gas formed from the natural decay of uranium. It is found in rock, water and soil.
While radon in outdoor air poses a relatively low risk to human health, it can enter homes from the surrounding soil and become a health hazard inside buildings, Lillis said.
A limited number of free radon test kits have been made available to West Haven residents by the state Department of Public Health. To receive a test kit, call the city Health Department at 203-937-3660.
A sanitarian from the department will help with the kit’s placement in the home and retrieve it at the end of the testing period, Lillis said.
To learn more about radon, visit the DPH Radon Program webpage.
Sound Health publishes 4th edition
WEST HAVEN, Jan. 4, 2021 — Stay connected and engaged during the pandemic with the latest edition of Sound Health, the Health Department’s newsletter.
Read about all things public health, plus try your hand at the latest AARP crossword puzzle, at Sound Health.
City audit shows continued progress
WEST HAVEN, Jan. 4, 2021 — The city’s audit for fiscal year 2020 highlighted continued fiscal responsibility and progress while meeting the state-mandated audit deadline of Dec. 31 for the first time in more than a decade, Mayor Nancy R. Rossi announced.
West Haven’s general fund capped the fiscal year, which ended June 30, 2020, with positive operations of $2.2 million that boosted the fund balance, or rainy day fund, to nearly $3.6 million, Rossi said.
The city’s other major funds also fared well, Rossi said, with the City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown finishing with a $766,466 surplus and the sewer fund with a $1.7 million surplus. The fund balances of the fire department and sewer fund increased to $1.9 million and $4.9 million, respectfully, she said.
The budget document credits a combination of increased revenue and decreased spending for the surpluses. The city’s long-term debt — bonds and clean water notes — decreased by $16.5 million during the audited period.
The audit was conducted by blumshapiro of West Hartford.
“I am thrilled that we were able to have the audit on time, and I want to thank our city and Board of Education staff for their efforts making it happen — it is important to me and the city,” Rossi said. “This is the third consecutive audit with positive financial operations allowing us to build substantial rainy day reserves. Certainly, the state restructuring funds have assisted us greatly in our recovery but will phase out next year.
“The city has implemented necessary structural changes, responsible budgeting techniques and fiscal accountability. Our efforts have resulted in a significant turnaround and recovery from the dismal financial situation the city faced just three years ago. I want to thank our city and educational staff and the members of the City Council and Board of Education for their hard work, conscientious decision-making and support. Our work is not done, but we have made great progress and are headed in the right direction.”
Rossi continued: “As I have stated in the past, West Haven needed to focus on and fix its fiscal situation before we could expect substantial development opportunities and the needed investment in our aging infrastructure. Just like any struggling household would respond, we made some difficult sacrifices and went without for a bit. Our efforts have been successful, and now the city is in a position where we are seeing a flurry of interest from developers and investors. We have already begun to roll out our long-term plan to make the necessary investment in our aging municipal infrastructure, which includes our roads, bridges, sidewalks, parks and athletic facilities.
“Our priority will be to continue to market our city and grow our commercial grand list to stabilize our mill rate and make West Haven a better place to live and raise a family. Working with the state Legislature to establish an Enterprise Zone, finishing the Allingtown revitalization, obtaining Special Taxation District status for The Haven, completing the new high school, and developing the Savin Rock Conference Center over the next year or so will be important for continued investor confidence, growing our commercial grand list, and creating well-paying local jobs.”
Schedule announced for bulk trash pickup, e-waste drop-off in 2021
WEST HAVEN, Jan. 4, 2021 — The 2021 bulk trash pickup weeks are April 19-23 and Sept. 13-17.
West Haven residents are reminded to separate metals, recyclables and regular trash from bulk trash and put them out no more than 24 hours before pickup. Violations carry a $100 fine per daily offense, Public Works Commissioner Tom J. McCarthy said.
Residents are also reminded to “Put a Lid on It!” and use lids on all trash cans. Rain-soaked trash costs West Haven 10 times more at the dump, said McCarthy, adding that using trash can lids will save the city money by reducing the weight of trash and cost of tipping fees.
Bulk items include couches, chairs, tables, carpeting, padding and fencing, which may not exceed 6 feet in length. No building materials, tires, mattresses, propane tanks or hazardous waste are accepted.
Options for disposing of building materials include renting a dumpster or bringing the materials to a disposal facility for a fee.
Tires can be brought to Town Fair Tire, 63 Boston Post Road, Orange, for a fee of $2.75 per tire.
Mattresses can be disposed of for free in a container at the city’s highway maintenance garage, 1 Collis St. Mattresses must be dry.
Hazardous waste can be dropped off for free at HazWaste Central, 90 Sargent Drive, New Haven. HazWaste is open Saturday mornings from mid-May through October.
Propane tanks can be brought to Taylor Rental, 304 Boston Post Road, Orange, for a fee of $10.60 per tank.
The amount of bulk trash per collection is limited to 6 cubic yards, which is equal to a pile of trash about 6 feet long, 6 feet wide and 4 ½ feet high.
Homeowners are required to rent a dumpster or hire a junk removal service at their expense if trash exceeds 6 cubic yards. Otherwise, trash exceeding 6 cubic yards will be left at the curb, and a $100 fine per daily offense will be imposed, McCarthy said.
To prevent a potential fine, property owners should familiarize themselves with the city’s trash guidelines at Public Works.
Bulk trash must be generated by the customer at the residential unit where it is collected. Trash will not be collected if it is generated by anyone other than the resident of the home.
Bulk items must be separated and orderly. Do not place them next to a mailbox or utility pole or close to a fence, McCarthy said.
Also, do not place bulk items in front of a vacant lot or home — they will not be collected, he said.
Details at Bulk Trash Pickup.
In addition to bulk trash, the city picks up metals, including household appliances, also known as white goods, and toilets. To schedule a pickup on their curbside collection day, residents must call the Highway Department at 203-937-3644 or 203-937-3585. Appliance doors must be removed.
The 2021 pickup schedule for leaf bags is April 1-June 1 and Oct. 1-Dec. 31. The pickup schedule for grass bags is May 17-Nov. 19. The bags are picked up on residents’ weekly collection days. Leaves and grass clippings must be in separate biodegradable paper bags and will not be accepted if they are in plastic bags.
The city also picks up brush that is cut into 3-to-6-foot lengths and tied in small bundles, no more than 70 pounds. Logs and stumps are prohibited.
Residents can bring grass clippings as well as bagged leaves and untied brush to the compost site, 1 Kimberly Ave., from 6:30 a.m.-2 p.m. weekdays and, starting in June, from 6:30-11:30 a.m. Saturdays. The first cubic yard of compost is free with proof of residence. Additional compost costs $25 per cubic yard. Residents must bring their own buckets and shovels.
For a $50 fee, the Department of Public Works will deliver up to 2 cubic yards of compost to city homes.
For electronic items, including TVs, the 2021 e-waste drop-off days are Jan. 16, April 24, June 19 and Sept. 18.
Residents can drop off electronic recyclables — typically anything that contains a circuit board or needs a battery — from 8 a.m.-noon at the highway maintenance garage.
The city is partnering with Take 2 Inc. of Waterbury, a state-approved recycler and collector of universal e-waste devices, to collect residential electronic items on a quarterly basis.
The collection is free for residents who have such items as computers, monitors, printers, keyboards, modems, computer mice, tablet computers, TVs, VCRs, DVD players, photocopiers, fax machines, scanners, video game machines, digital media players, personal digital assistants, stereo equipment, telephones, cellphones, cameras, microwaves and other small appliances.
Anything that has refrigerant, including air conditioners and dehumidifiers, is not accepted. Those items are considered white goods, and residents are asked to schedule a pickup on their curbside collection day by calling the Highway Department.
Details at E-waste Drop-off.
For the e-waste drop-off, residents are asked to heed the following guidelines:
- Stay in your vehicle.
- Vehicles will be spaced out. Event workers will remove electronics from your vehicle. There should be no interaction between residents and workers.
- No mattresses or box springs will be disposed of at the moment.
- No smoke detectors, ballasts or hazardous waste — lighter fluid, liquids, paint — will be accepted.
- Electronic items left curbside will be tagged with information on the e-waste schedule and must be removed, or face a potential fine.
For the latest news and information, subscribe to the city’s Facebook page at West Haven City Hall.
Reminders about Christmas trees, holiday trash pickup in West Haven
WEST HAVEN, Jan. 4, 2021 — The city reminds residents not to put Christmas trees in plastic bags or stands for curbside pickup.
Lights must also be removed from Christmas trees. Plastic bags and other items can become tangled in the machine that grinds the trees into compost.
Christmas trees will be picked up in January and February only. Residents needing a pickup after Feb. 28 will be charged a $25 fee. Christmas trees can also be brought to the compost site at 1 Kimberly Ave.
Also, residents are reminded that three 2021 holidays will delay curbside pickup one day.
Affordable Waste Systems LLC of East Haven, the city’s private contractor for rubbish and recyclables, will not pick up rubbish, recyclables or metals on Memorial Day, Labor Day and Thanksgiving.
If a holiday falls on a weekday, pickup for that week will move ahead one day. But when a holiday like Thanksgiving falls on a Thursday, only Thursday and Friday’s collections will move up a day.
Thanksgiving is also the only holiday that excludes metal pickup in those affected districts.
Separate metals and recyclables from regular trash.
Detailed information about the city’s trash and recycling guidelines is available at Bulk Trash Pickup.
For the latest news and information, subscribe to the city’s Facebook page at West Haven City Hall.
Taxes due now in West Haven
WEST HAVEN, Jan. 4, 2021 — The second installment of city tax bills — real estate, personal property, motor vehicle, sewer — were due Jan. 1, and payments after Feb. 1 are considered delinquent and subject to interest, Tax Collector Dorothy Chambrelli said.
The 2019 supplemental motor vehicle bills are for vehicles registered after Oct. 1, 2019, and were also due Jan. 1.
Current taxes that were due Jan. 1 will have a 30-day grace period. Under the city’s COVID-19 relief plan, the interest rate on taxes that were due Jan. 1 will have a reduced interest rate from 1.5% to 0.25% per month until March 31.
Taxes can be paid by check, credit card, debit card or money order from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday at the window outside the tax office on the Campbell Avenue side of City Hall or by the drop box at the 355 Main St. entrance of the building. No cash is accepted and City Hall is closed on Friday until further notice, city officials said.
Taxpayers who have cash can go to a bank of their choice to obtain a money order or certified check.
While waiting in line for in-person payments at the tax office window, taxpayers must wear face masks and maintain social distancing at all times, including staying 6 feet away from others.
Taxpayers can also make a payment on the city website at Tax Bills. Sewer bills are on the same page but under a separate tab. Tax payment history can also be viewed and printed.
The fees for credit cards and electronic checks are available at Payments.
Taxes can also be paid by mail — check or money order, no cash — to the tax office lockbox or drop box. When paying by lockbox or drop box, the canceled check is the receipt.
After Feb. 1, taxes with interest can be paid by mail to the Office of the Tax Collector, P.O. Box 401, West Haven, CT 06516. Payments can also be made in person.
Anyone needing a motor vehicle clearance must pay in person by credit card, debit card or money order.