Rell announces nominees for courts

Gov. M. Jodi Rell announced Wednesday that she will nominate Superior Court Judge Dennis Eveleigh of Hamden to the Connecticut Supreme Court. Eveleigh, who has served on the Superior Court in Waterbury since 1998, would replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Christine Vertefeuille, who has served on the court since 2000. Rell also nominated candidates to fill 10 of the 20 current vacancies on the Superior Court bench, including Laura Baldini ’92 of West Hartford.

—Alon Harish

Judge exonerates two in 1993 Fair Haven murder

A Rockville Superior Court judge ordered the release from prison of two men who had been convicted of a 1993 murder in Fair Haven, the New Haven Independent reported Wednesday. The judge concluded that the two men, Ron Taylor and George Gould, were not guilty. The earliest the two men, who have served 16 years of their 80-year sentences, will be released is April 1 because the judge’s ruling will not go into effect until after a 10-day waiting period to allow for appeals.

—Yale Daily News

GOP senators ask Blumenthal to bust health care bill

The Connecticut Senate’s 12-member Republican caucus has asked state Attorney General Richard Blumenthal LAW ’73, a Democrat, to file a lawsuit challenging the federal health care law. Attorneys general from 13 states have already filed such lawsuits. Blumenthal called the bill a “historic step toward fairness and access for all in need of critical care and coverage” and said it will make health care more affordable for 80,000 Connecticut businesses, he said in a statement issued after the bill passed. He has received the senators’ request and will review it.

—Yale Daily News

Facing budget deficit, state Democrats approve spending hike

Legislators responded to Gov. M. Jodi Rell’s budget Thursday and the appropriations committee on Thursday approved 29 to 25 a budget that will increase spending 4 percent for fiscal year 2010-2011. The bill’s $19.28 billion budget is the largest in state history. Among other measures, the bill included a new 5.5 percent tax on hospitals, $20 millon in new taxes on insurance companies and eliminated 390 full-time positions in the state prisons. Connecticut is facing a $700 million projected deficit for the next fiscal year.

—Yale Daily News

Road closed following accident

Following a serious car crash at about 1 a.m. that sent at least two people to the hospital, Ella T. Grasso Boulevard between Derby Avenue and Chapel Street was closed for 12 hours Thursday, the New Haven Register reported. Investigators discovered a bullet hole in one vehicle’s door but none of the crash’s victims had been shot. The only person to suffer serious injuries was city resident Javon St. Claire, 23, who was driving one of the vehicles.

—Yale Daily News

Rell wants state agency to review health care bill

Gov. M. Jodi Rell has charged the Commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development with analyzing the financial effects of the health care bill on Connecticut’s employers. “The simple fact is that this 4,000-page legislation – which weighs nearly five pounds – is likely to have all kinds of consequences, including some that its drafters did not predict,” Rell said in a statement Thursday. A “Rapid Review” board, which Rell formed in January, will also be assessing the bill’s effects.

—Yale Daily News