MEMBER ACHIEVEMENTS 

KeyBank hires new retail leaders for its CT/MA market 

(NEW HAVEN, Conn.) – May 31, 2018 – KeyBank today announced the addition of three new retail leaders, building the capabilities of its branch network team across Connecticut and Massachusetts. Joining KeyBank with the title of Vice President and Area Retail Leader are Mark Commune, who will lead the sales and service efforts of Key’s branch offices in the northern New Haven and Middlesex counties; Elissa Eddie, leading branch teams in the greater Hartford area, and Brandon Ojakian, leading teams in northern Connecticut and western Massachusetts. 

“I am thrilled with the caliber of talent we’ve been able to attract to Key as we strengthen our retail leadership, and expand consumer and small business services to new customers across Connecticut and Massachusetts,” said Courtney Jinjika, Regional Sales Executive for KeyBank.  “Mark, Elissa and Brandon bring a wealth of consumer and business banking experience, and a collective passion for driving financial wellness that will benefit our customers and branch employees alike.”

Mark Commune has more than 20 years of professional experience in banking and finance from a variety of management, customer facing, and sales and service positions.  Most recently, Mark served as regional coach at Santander Bank, developing branch teams and district management in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island.  Prior to that, he led retail branch teams in Central and Eastern Connecticut for Citizens Bank.  In his new role with Key, Mark leads branch teams serving Cheshire, Wallingford, Yalesville, North Branford, Branford, Guilford, Madison, Clinton, Westbrook, Old Saybrook, Centerbrook, and Chester customers.  He also leads the [email protected] team who provides financial wellness benefits to employers across Connecticut and Massachusetts.  Mark holds a BS in Corporate Communications from Southern Connecticut State University, and he and his family live in Cheshire, where he is involved with coaching and managing youth sports.

Elissa Eddie recently transferred from Key’s Washington state market to Hartford to lead the branch teams in Hartford, East Hartford, West Hartford, Avon, Glastonbury, Plainville, Manchester, Rocky Hill, and Wethersfield.  She has been with KeyBank for 11 years, most recently serving as area retail leader in the Washington state region.  Prior to joining KeyBank, Elissa held retail sales and sales management positions in the fine jewelry industry.  She graduated from the University of Washington Pacific Coast Banking School in 2011, and served as vice chair for the board of directors of YMCA of Seattle, WA. She and her family have recently settled in Glastonbury.  

Brandon Ojakian has 20 years of experience in the banking and finance industry.  He joins KeyBank from Santander Bank, where he served as a district executive leading branch teams in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island.  Prior to Santander, he led several retail regions for Citizens Bank.  In his role with KeyBank, Brandon provides leadership to branch teams serving customers in Windsor, South Windsor, East Windsor, and Enfield branches in Connecticut, and West Springfield, East Longmeadow, Feeding Hills, Holyoke, Ludlow, Riverdale, Southwick, and Westfield branches in Massachusetts.  He holds a bachelor’s degree from Albertus Magnus College, and lives with his family in Farmington, where Brandon coaches his children’s sports, and plays USTA men’s tennis.

KeyBank has 64 branches in Connecticut and eight branches in Western Massachusetts. 

About KeyCorp

KeyCorp's roots trace back 190 years to Albany, New York. Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, Key is one of the nation’s largest bank-based financial services companies, with assets of approximately $137.0 billion at March 31, 2018.

 

Key provides deposit, lending, cash management, insurance, and investment services to individuals and businesses in 15 states under the name KeyBank National Association through a network of approximately 1,200 branches and more than 1,500 ATMs. Key also provides a broad range of sophisticated corporate and investment banking products, such as merger and acquisition advice, public and private debt and equity, syndications and derivatives to middle market companies in selected industries throughout the United States under the KeyBanc Capital Markets trade name. For more information, visit https://www.key.com/. KeyBank is Member FDIC.


 

Winners of Eighth Annual Connecticut Zero Energy Challenge Announced

Builders and homeowners in Mansfield, Norwalk and Mystic demonstrate that super high efficiency homes are achievable

Pearce Real Estate Volunteers for Ronald McDonald House

North Haven, Connecticut (March 27, 2018) – Barbara L. Pearce, CEO and President of Pearce Real Estate, today announced that Pearce employees and sales associates raised funds to provide dinner to the residents of Ronald McDonald House in New Haven. The Ronald McDonald House is a temporary “home away from home” for families of children who are being treated at nearby hospitals and healthcare facilities. 

Judi Starno and Diane Shea, Residential Sales Associates of the Wallingford Regional office and members of the Catholic Charity League of New Haven coordinated the efforts for the meal which fed thirty-five residents on March 5th.

Food was catered by Café Romeo, a local restaurant in New Haven. Light snacks were also donated by Pearce for when families spend long hours at the hospital.

“Pearce along with our staff and sales associates believe in community service and making a difference in the lives of others.  We are proud to serve such a wonderful facility and its residents,” said Ms. Pearce.

Pearce Real Estate is a full-service real estate company with more than 100 agents and eight branch offices in greater New Haven and the shoreline. Commercial real estate offices are located in North Haven, Milford, and Rocky Hill. All listings are available on the web at www.hpearcecommercial.com


 

Guilmartin, DiPiro & Sokolowski, LLC Announces Promotions and Expands Capabilities with Membership in BDO Alliance USA

Leading accounting firm in Middletown poised for growth in 2018 and beyond.

(Middletown, CT), March 27, 2018 – Guilmartin, DiPiro & Sokolowski, LLC (GDS), a certified public accounting firm, continues to strengthen and expand its ability to serve a growing roster of clients. The firm is pleased to announce the promotions of two senior staff members and a strategic investment to expand back-office capabilities.

Dylan Stumpf has been promoted to Supervisor. A graduate of Merrimack College, Dylan joined GDS in June 2011. Since then, he has gained significant experience with auditing of nonprofit organizations, preparation of individual and business tax returns, and bookkeeping for clients. Dylan lives in West Hartford and is a member of the Connecticut Society of Certified Public Accountants (CTCPA) and is currently studying for the CPA exam.

Daniel Slepski, CPA has been promoted to Senior Accountant. Dan is a Certified Public Accountant with expertise in auditing nonprofit organizations and preparing tax filings for individuals and other entities. He lives in Wethersfield and is a member of the CTCPA.

“We are proud to announce the promotion of these two long-term employees,” said Mike Sokolowski, a partner at GDS. “Their steadfast commitment to our firm, expertise in serving clients and hard work has helped them to reach new milestones in their careers.”

The partners at GDS are also pleased to announce that the firm has joined the BDO Alliance USA, a nationwide association of independently owned local and regional accounting, consulting and service firms that share similar client service goals. As an independent member of the BDO Alliance USA, GDS can expand the services offered to clients by drawing on the resources of BDO USA, LLP, one of the nation’s leading professional services firms, and other Alliance members.

“Our membership in the BDO Alliance USA allows us to better serve and grow our client base while maintaining our autonomy as an independent firm,” said Sokolowski. “We now have access to greater technical knowledge and the specialty services of BDO USA that will allow us to better compete with large national firms.”

The BDO Alliance USA enhances member firm capabilities through the availability of supplementary professional services, comprehensive management consulting services, focused industry knowledge, customized state-of-the-art computer systems, and internal training programs.

“We believe the professionals of GDS share BDO’s commitment to exemplary client service and we want to welcome them into the BDO Alliance USA,” said Michael Horwitz, BDO USA, LLP Partner and Executive Director of Alliance Services.

About Guilmartin, DiPiro & Sokolowski, LLC
Founded in 1972, GDS is a full-service public accounting firm with a staff of 25 professionals. GDS is dedicated to serving the needs of individuals, privately-owned businesses, professional practices and nonprofit entities throughout Connecticut and the region. The firm offers a wide range of accounting and tax specialties from general tax and accounting to audits and financial statements to litigation support. For more information, visit www.gdscpas.com or call 860.347.5689.

About the BDO Alliance USA
The BDO Alliance USA is a nationwide association of independently owned local and regional accounting, consulting and service firms with similar client service goals. The BDO Alliance USA presents an opportunity for these firms, by accessing the resources of BDO USA, LLP and other Alliance members, to expand services to their clients without jeopardizing their existing relationships or their autonomy. The BDO Alliance USA was developed to provide Member firms with an alternative strategy for gaining competitive advantage in the face of a changing business landscape. The Alliance represents an opportunity for BDO to enhance relationships with reputable firms that share a mutual business understanding. The BDO Alliance USA is a subsidiary of BDO USA, LLP, a Delaware limited liability partnership.

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NEW BRITAIN, Conn. – Eversource and AVANGRID, Inc. subsidiaries United Illuminating, Southern Connecticut Gas and Connecticut Natural Gas, have selected three winners for the eighth annual Energize Connecticut Zero Energy Challenge (ZEC), a statewide design and build competition for single and multi-family homes. The competition featured seven homes from across the state built between June 1, 2017 and January 31, 2018.

In this nationally recognized initiative, participants are challenged to construct high efficiency homes that consume little to no energy by using sustainable building practices.

“Over the past eight years, the Zero Energy Challenge builders and homeowners have helped to transform new residential construction practices across the state. These participants continued that legacy by designing homes built with long-term sustainability and affordability in mind,” said Taren O’Connor, the Connecticut Energy Efficiency Board Chair. “I applaud our builders, HERS raters, homeowners and others involved for their dedication and accomplishments. Thank you for championing the zero-energy movement in Connecticut, and demonstrating that these homes are not only great for the environment but affordable and attainable.”

Homes are evaluated on energy efficiency, affordability and replication. Each home’s HERS Index (Home Energy Rating Score) with and without renewables, its thermal envelope, and cost per square foot are assessed to determine the Challenge’s winners. The HERS Index is a nationally standardized scoring system that measures a home’s energy performance. The lower the number, the more energy efficient the home; a score of zero represents a net zero energy home.

The 2017 Zero Energy Challenge winners include:

Overall Winner and Lowest HERS Index and Lowest HERS Index without Renewables Category Winner

Project: Courtney and Lynn McCracken Residence, Mystic, Conn.

Builder: Michael Joplin – Joplin Construction, Chester, Conn.

Architect: Robert Mercer and Chris Vernott – Mercer, Bertsche, Vernott Architects, Old Mystic, Conn.

 

“Forty-six years ago on our first date we dreamed of building and designing a home together – and we never let go of that dream,” said Courtney McCracken, the homeowner. “My naval career exposed us to international living and home design, and through my studies at Brown University, I learned about sustainable building practices. Because of these experiences we decided a sustainable, zero-energy home would best suit our needs for our forever home.”

 

Best Overall Envelope

Project: Paul and Louise Lewis Residence, Mansfield, Conn.

Builder: Jamie Wolf – Wolfworks, Avon, Conn.

 

Lowest Cost/Square Foot

Project: Jan Degenshein Residence, Norwalk, Conn.

Builder: Degenshein Architects, Nyack, N.Y.

 

Specific project information for all entries can be found by visiting CTZeroEnergyChallenge.com.

The Connecticut Zero Energy Challenge is now seeking participants for its 2018 challenge. Homes must be completed by January 31, 2019. If interested in applying, please visit CTZeroEnergyChallenge.com for more details.

About Energize Connecticut

Energize Connecticut helps you save money and use clean energy. It is an initiative of the State of Connecticut, the Connecticut Green Bank, Eversource, UI, SCG and CNG, with funding from a charge on customer energy bills. Information on energy-saving programs can be found at EnergizeCT.com or by calling 877.WISE.USE.


 

Nicola, Yester & Company, P.C. Named One of 2018 Best Places to Work

(GLASTONBURY, CT) March 19, 2018 — Nicola, Yester & Company, P.C. was recently named as one of the Best Places to Work in Connecticut in the small/medium category. This thirteenth annual program was created by the Hartford Business Journal and Best Companies Group.

This survey and awards program was designed to identify, recognize, and honor the best employers in Connecticut, benefiting the state's economy, workforce, and businesses. The list is made up of 45 companies split into two categories: 27 small/medium-sized companies (15-199 US employees) and 18 large-sized companies (200 or more US employees).

To be considered for participation, companies had to fulfill the following eligibility requirements:

- Be a for-profit, not-for-profit business or government entity;

- Be a publicly or privately held business;

- Have a facility in Connecticut;

- Have at least 15 employees in Connecticut;

- Be in business a minimum of 1 year.

Companies from across the state entered the two-part survey process to determine the Best Places to Work in Connecticut. The first part consisted of evaluating each company's workplace policies, practices, philosophy, systems, and demographics. The second part consisted of an employee survey to measure the employee experience. The combined scores determined the top companies and the final ranking.  Best Companies Group managed the overall registration and survey process in Connecticut, analyzed the data, and determined the final rankings.

The ranked companies were recognized at a special awards ceremony in February, and the actual rankings were published in a recent March issue of the Hartford Business Journal.  Nicola, Yester & Company, P.C. was honored to be a second place winner this year!


 

Pathway Lighting Winner of 2017 LIT Lighting Design Awards

(OLD SAYBROOK, CT) February 12, 2018 — Pathway Lighting Products, Inc. is excited to announce that its WLE Series Silicone-Sealed Open-Aperture Downlight has been selected by the Jury as a winner in the LIT Design Awards.  The Lighting Product Design of the Year Award recognizes the efforts of talented lighting product designers who improve and perfect the quality of design and quality of light emitted by their designs. Pathway Lighting won the award for the category: Outdoor Ceiling Lights.
 
The WLE Series is suitable for wet locations under covered ceilings.  This alternative method for sealing the fixture eliminates the need for a flat lens that tends to accumulate bugs and debris.  The WLE is offered in the Bridgelux Vero LED module and driver, available in 4” and 6” apertures. The recessed LED downlights are appropriate for commercial, retail and institutional applications that require energy saving and long-life LED lamp source.   To see this entire collection go to: WLE  & WL2 Open-Aperture Downlights

Pathway Lighting’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Kent Baker states, “We appreciate the recognition.  This product line also won the IES Progress Report Committee award in 2017.  Our engineering department was presented with an application challenge to create a wet location can with an open trim.  Like many of our best products, this product was an answer to that challenge.”


 

Nicola-Yester Announces New Managing Partner: Steven V. Prigionieri, CPA, MSAT, CEPA

(GLASTONBURY, CT) January 29, 2018- The partners of Nicola Yester & Company, P.C. are pleased to announce the election of Steven V. Prigionieri as Managing Partner effective January 1, 2018.  The firm was founded in 1986 by Timothy Nicola and Norman Yester who continue to work actively with the firm’s clients. 

A veteran of 25 years of public accounting, Steve joined the firm in 2010, focusing his tax, and advisory, and accounting practice in servicing privately held businesses primarily in the construction, manufacturing, healthcare, and restaurant industries.

To further his service to owners of the firm’s closely held business clients, Steve was designated as a Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA) in 2015, having completed the rigorous MBA-style program of the Exit Planning Institute.  Through his training, he is able to assist owners in building, harvesting and preserving family wealth by integrating major exit strategy components into their planning and operations.

Steve received his B.S. in Accounting from Quinnipiac University and his M.S. in Accounting and Taxation from the University of Hartford.  He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Connecticut Society of Certified Public Accountants (CTCPA).  He is a member of the Accounting Advisory Council at Quinnipiac University where he also served previously as an Adjunct Professor of Accounting.  Steve is a former NCAA Division 1 Football Official and officiated football for over 25 years.

Nicola Yester is a 20-person accounting and tax firm serving closely held businesses in the construction, manufacturing, hospitality, healthcare industries.


 

Powder Ridge Partners with DirtSculpt LLC (Dave King) to Bring a World Class Bike Park to Connecticut

Two Phase Expansion Plan for Bike Park Scheduled for Spring & Fall of 2018

(Middlefield, CT) January 18, 2018- Powder Ridge Mountain Park & Resort announced today it has signed an agreement with Dave King of Dirtsculpt LLC, one of the world’s best bike park builders to expand its mountain biking park. DirtSculpt has over 15 years of professional experience designing and building some of the world’s best bike parks and trails. In addition, Dirtsculpt has built courses for some of the biggest events in the biking industry including X-Games, Red Bull, TRA & Dew Tour just to name a few.

Dirtsculpt will put their expertise to work on designing and building a family friendly park that can be enjoyed by every level of biker and many different types of biking disciplines including Downhill, Enduro, dirt jump and BMX. “We are very excited to be working with Powder Ridge and to have one of our parks as a permanent fixture, something that riders can enjoy for years to come,” said Dave King, owner of

Dirtsculpt. “Powder Ridge’s location between two of the largest markets, Boston and New York will give

the sport exposure to a much larger audience.”

The approved scope of the project will include the following:

·         Expansion and upgrading of seven (7) of the existing top to bottom downhill mountain biking trails including adding jumps, rollers, wooden features, wall rides and drops.

·         Design & buildout of a 50,000 Sq. Ft. beginner’s skills area with berms, rollers, rock garden and features.

·         Design and buildout of three (3) new top to bottom downhill trails, one for each level of biker (green, blue, black).

·         Design and buildout of BMX/dirt jump park area with three (3) jump lines that are over 750 Ft. long and a pump track.

“The next level of mountain biking is finally coming to Southern New England” says Sean Hayes, CEO of

Powder Ridge. “We have spent the last year working with Dave King and other industry experts to design an overall biking program that will make mountain biking more accessible to every level of rider”. The relaunch of the park will include a full suite of group and private lessons, summer camp & day trip programs, sponsored competitions, an expanded rental fleet for all levels of riders plus youth and adult meet-up group programs.

Powder Ridge Mountain Park & Resort is the first full service year-round urban mountain sports park and resort, featuring skiing, snowboarding, tubing, mountain biking and synthetic snow adventures for all ages. The 225-acre facility is centrally located in the heart of Connecticut at the junction of all the major throughways, providing easy access to the over 23 million people within a 90-mile radius. The newly renovated lodge houses the Marketplace for casual dining and large events. On the second floor of the lodge is the Ridgeside Tavern, Fire at The Ridge Restaurant, and 10 hotel rooms. The mountain has been upgraded with new snow making equipment, snow grooming vehicles, and updated aerial and surface lifts. The training center is the only Terrain Based Learning Facility in CT, which utilizes sculpted snow to give beginners high level skiing and riding sensations without the fear or risks of falling and stopping.

Dirtsculpt LLC is a Pennsylvania based company that specializes in the planning, design, and construction of trails, bike parks and competitive events.  Dirtsculpt has over 15 years of professional experience designing and building some of the world’s best bike parks, events and trails. Dirtsculpt is a proud member of the Professional Trail Builders Association.


 

Bevin Bells Celebrates Nearly 200 Years Ringing In the Holiday Season

 

(EAST HAMPTON, CT) Bevin Bells of East Hampton was recently featured in a News 8 segment on their tree lightening special. It featured information on their nearly 200 year history and "It's a Wonderful Life" ornament. Ring in the new year to take a look at this great segment on Belltown!


 

Travelers Championship Named 2017 "Tournament of the Year"

 

 

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla., Dec. 8, 2017 – The 2017 Travelers Championship was honored Thursday night by the PGA TOUR at the TOUR’s Tournament Meetings, winning the prestigious “Tournament of the Year” award. The Travelers Championship also won awards for “Most Fan-Friendly Event,” “Best Sales” and the inaugural “Players Choice.”


 

Eli Cannon's Tap Room inducted into Connecticut Hospitality Hall of Fame by the Connecticut Restaurant Association

 

(MIDDLETOWN, CT) NOVEMBER 29, 2017 Eli Cannon's Tap Room was inducted into the Connecticut Hospitality Hall of Fame by the Connecticut Restaurant Association. The award ceremony was held at Foxwoods Resort and Casino. Eli Cannon's Tap Room boasts 24 years of great craft beers including 36 real ales on tap . Located in Middletown's NoRA district, Quality comfort food at reasonable prices was the idea, the idea has never changed. Eli Cannon's give back to community throughout the year. It hosts an annual Beer Fest where Eli Cannon’s has raised over $16,000 between 2015 & 2016 for the Coalition on Housing and Homelessness. Eli Cannon's is the final destination for the Holiday on Main Tree Lighting Ceremonies where it always snows without fail every year.


 

Ädelbrook is one of 15 finalists in the nation to be in the running to win $100,000 from Farmers Insurance Dream Big Teacher Challenge. Voting ongoing until October 30th.

 

(CROMWELL, CT) Ädelbrook is one of 15 finalists in the nation to be in the running to win $100,000 from Farmers Insurance Dream Big Teacher Challenge. Ädelbrook is the only Connecticut school to be a finalist. But to win, we need to get the most votes. Please vote for Ädelbrook daily through October 30, to help us get the most votes and get the much needed funds to help our children succeed.  Look for Jessica Embacher – Ädelbrook at https://www.farmers.com/thank-americas-teachers/vote-for-a-teacher/vote-100k-proposal/


 

Emergency Resource Management has been selected as a Top Workplace in CT

 

(PORTLAND, CT) September 26, 2017 -- For the 5th Year in a row Emergency Resource Management of Portland, CT has been selected as a Top Workplace in CT. This year for the 1st time ERM actually placed No. 2 out of 61 companies in attendance at the Aqua Turf Thursday night. Over 1000 businesses and 45,000 employees were surveyed.  ERM also received special recognition in the category of ‘Meaningfulness’ which was important for most its employees.

"This is a tremendous honor for our company and I am extremely proud and grateful to all my employees. They are truly the best EMS professionals in CT." said Bob Ziegler, President of ERM.

Pictured are ERM employees: Matt Ziegler, Bob Ziegler, Megan Carey, and Joe Lavallee.
Pathway Lighting Announces New Vice President of Sales & Marketing

 

OLD SAYBROOK, CONN., August 18, 2017 -- Pathway Lighting, Inc. is proud to announce Kenton Baker as the company’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing. Kent has been working in the engineering department as the Technical Service Manager since January 2014. In this role, he worked on technical application and warranty solutions with the company’s manufacturer representatives, distributors, contractors, and engineers across the country.

Kent came to Pathway Lighting with more than 30 years of sales and marketing experience. He learned lighting and control sales, and specification work from both Sylvania and GE. After receiving an MBA from University of Rhode Island, Kent held the following positions:

• Product Manager, National Accounts Manager, and Channel Marketing Manager – Square D Company

• Director, Sales and Marketing Projects Division – Thomas & Betts

• Eastern Region Sales Manager – Philips Lighting Electronics

Kent will be responsible for sales team leadership, channel development and will be contributing to the development and implementation of Pathway’s marketing and business strategies.

Executive VP/COO Larry DeFrancesco stated, “We are very excited to welcome Kent to his new role with Pathway Lighting. Kent’s experience in managing sales teams, creating customer incentive programs and generating revenue is core to the strategic direction of Pathway. He will be focused on improving communication with and support of the sales team by coordinating and implementing a unified approach to sales and marketing.”

Pathway Lighting plans to expand their share in the marketing with innovative new products, customer-focused marketing programs and sales strategy implementation. Kent will continue to support Pathway’s commitment to customer service, as he did in his previous role.

Founded in 1990, Pathway Lighting is an innovative designer and manufacturer of specification grade LED luminaires -- from downlights to wall washers, adjustable accents to decorative pendants, and emergency to egress fixtures -- for the commercial and institutional markets in North America. Their wide range of products can support the lighting requirements of a single space or the entire project. As an independently owned lighting manufacturer, the company is able to provide responsive technical support, and welcomes their customers’ requests for fixture modifications and custom products. For more information, visit us at www.pathwaylighting.com


Congratulations to the
Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce
2017 Small Business Award Winners
 
Business of the Year (1—30 employees)
Brothers Auto Body - Cromwell

Business of the Year ( 31 + employees)
Citizens Bank - County Wide

Business Growth & Expansion
Powder Ridge Mountain Park & Resort - Middlefield

Manufacturer of the Year
Whelen Engineering Company, Inc. - Chester

Minority Owned Business of the Year
Dental Health Care—Gloria F. Perry, DMD - Cromwell

Outstanding New Business Under 5 Years
Victorian Inspirations - Portland

Retail Business of the Year
A Pocketful of Posies - Middletown

Tourism/Hospitality Business of the Year
The Ivoryton Playhouse - Ivoryton

Technology Business of the Year
Charles IT - Middletown


Farmington Bank Honored by Small Business Administration
Farmington Bank was named Lender of the Quarter by the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Connecticut District Office. During SBA’s fiscal third quarter, Farmington Bank had 24 SBA loan approvals, and a total of 37 loans so far this year. “Farmington Bank’s support of small businesses is an investment in our communities,” said Andreas Kapetanopoulos, senior vice president and director of small business lending at Farmington Bank. “Our lending team is focused on supporting qualified small businesses in central Connecticut and western Massachusetts,” said Kapetanopoulos. Pictured at the recent SBA award ceremony were, from left, William Tierney, SBA lender relations specialist; Julio Casiano, SBA deputy district director; Anne Hunt, SBA district director; Andreas Kapetanopoulos, Farmington Bank senior vice president and director of small business lending; Ryan Lynch, Farmington Bank vice president and small business portfolio manager; Elizabeth Hayden, Farmington Bank small business credit analyst; and John Patrick, Farmington Bank chairman, president and CEO.  Photo credit:  Farmington Bank
Connecticut Lodging Association: Connecticut Supports Small Lodging Businesses
BED AND BREAKFAST OCCUPANCY TAX RATE TO BE LOWERED TO 11%
 
New Haven, Connecticut – July 12,2017 –The Bed and Breakfast flat tax provision in HB 7312, was assigned Public Act number PA 17-147 and was forwarded to the Secretary of the State. On July 7, it was signed into law by Governor Malloy. This provision support small lodging businesses, by lowering the room occupancy tax for bed and breakfasts to 11%, which currently pay 15% room occupancy tax, same as hotels. 

The bill applies a uniform 11% room occupancy tax to the rent received by bed and breakfast establishments (B&Bs). It specifies that "Rent" means the consideration received for occupancy and any meals included with such occupancy received by hotels, lodging houses, and B&Bs. Under the bill, rent received by hotels and lodging houses continues to be subject to the current 15% room occupancy tax.

The Connecticut Lodging Association's Vice President and B&B Committee Chairman, Jeff Muthersbaugh applauds the State of Connecticut for its efforts. "I want to thank the Legislature for passing this very important legislation and the Governor for signing it. I especially want to thank House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz who took the time to visit a B&B to discuss this issue and others that effect our industry and then take positive action. This will help the B&B industry, our guests and tourism as a whole in Connecticut. This result shows that government and business can work together with excellent results." Jeff Muthersbaugh is the owner of the Haddam B&B, the Nehemiah Brainerd House Bed & Breakfast. 

The bill defines a B&B as a private operator-occupied house, other than a hotel or lodging house, with 12 or fewer rooms, in which people are lodged for hire and a full morning meal is included in the rent. It also specifies that "lodging house" includes furnished residences in which people are lodged for hire, thus explicitly subjecting rent received for lodging in such residences to the room occupancy tax.

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2017, and applicable to sales occurring on or after that date.
About Connecticut Lodging Association

Representing Hotels, Motels, B&Bs, and Tourism Related Business since 1904

The Connecticut Lodging Association plays a crucial role for all types of lodging properties by advocating for legislation, regulations, and resources that create a favorable business climate to promote a robust lodging industry within the state. CLA is a partner state association of the American Hotel & Lodging Association. ctlodging.org 


Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network Names Jeff Cohen News Director of WNPR
Hartford, Connecticut – July 11, 2017 – Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network (CPBN) today announced it has appointed Jeff Cohen as News Director of WNPR, its network of public radio stations in Connecticut, western Massachusetts and eastern Long Island affiliated with National Public Radio (NPR). 

“Jeff has been a vital member of the WNPR team since 2010.  His comprehensive knowledge of Connecticut mixed with his fresh, thorough reporting of local, regional and national issues makes him the right person to lead WNPR’s news division into the future,” said Jerry Franklin, president and CEO of CPBN.  “Jeff’s is a voice you can count on.” 

Cohen, 42, has been a WNPR reporter and occasional host for All Things Considered since 2010.  During his past seven years on the news staff, Cohen has reported on notable stories, including  the tragic 2012 Newtown shootings, the controversy surrounding the Hartford minor-league baseball stadium development, Hartford city politics, and health issues such as the Affordable Care Act and medical education. Cohen has recently taken part in Investigative Reporters & Editors’ training in computer-assisted and data reporting.  Many of Cohen’s reports have been featured nationally on NPR.

Prior to joining WNPR, Cohen was a reporter at the Hartford Courant and the Meriden Record-Journal and was a freelance writer for the New York Times. He’s also the author of two children’s books.

Cohen is a graduate of Northwestern University and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

He and his family live in Middletown, CT.

Cohen officially started in his role as News Director on June 1. 




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