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Town of Fairfield News

5/14/2021 - 5.14 TOWN UPDATE
Dear Fairfielders,

I am very encouraged to see that as more residents get vaccinated, Fairfield has officially moved out of the red and orange categories and into the yellow category (5-9 cases per 100,000), with our COVID-19 cases. This is the the third week in a row Fairfield has experienced a reduction in our case rate, allowing us to begin returning to normal life. 

I'm looking forward to seeing residents at our 
Memorial Day Parade on May 31st at 10:00 AM. I think it's special that our first Town wide event, we are able to come together to honor our fallen heroes. I am also excited to announce we are moving forward with our Independence Day Firework Show on July 3rd, where there will be entertainment prior to the firework display beginning around 9:15 PM. These events are a celebration of our nation’s patriotism and independence, and are always a wonderful time here in Fairfield. 

TOWN HALL REOPENING
Fairfield’s Emergency Management Team, led by Chief Denis McCarthy and together with my administration, worked quickly when the pandemic began to alter Town government operations to meet the needs of our residents and businesses.
 
Now, over a year later with the Governor's reopening announcement and the latest CDC guidance, I am pleased to announce the reopening our buildings to the public on Wednesday, May 19th. The reopening will return our operations to full in-person service for Town Hall Buildings. For guidance on the library reopening, see below a message from the Head Librarian. Guidance on the reopening of the Bigelow Center for Senior Activities will be forthcoming. As we ease back into resuming normal activity, and to ensure the safety of our employees, for the time being, Town policy will continue to require face coverings for members of the public entering our buildings. While the COVID-19 risk becomes lower each week, it is not zero.

My administration is continuing our efforts to improve services to residents and modernize our Town Government. We have several open positions across departments from part-time to full-time. To view a list of job openings for the Town of Fairfield, you can click 
here.

      COVID-19 VACCINE UPDATE

      The Fairfield Health Department employees may be calling individuals who received their COVID-19 vaccine at our clinics. While the COVID-19 vaccine is provided free of charge, the State will reimburse vaccine distributors for the administration fee when we submit a claim with valid insurance.
       
      As we try to confirm missing insurance data, a member of our staff may be reaching out to obtain this information or to confirm the insurance information we have on file. If you receive one of these calls, please provide your primary insurance and member ID, including Medicare, Husky or Medicaid. If you do not have insurance, we will ask for your Driver’s License number. Our staff will NEVER ask for social security or bank information. If you received a call and but are still concerned, please call our Health Department office at 203-256-3020.


      CT REOPENING
      Per Governor Lamont, effective May 19th all business restrictions will end. Outdoor masks will no longer be required for both unvaccinated and vaccinated individuals. Indoor masking is not required for vaccinated individuals, but is required for those who are not vaccinated per the new CDC guidance. Private business have the authority to determine their own mask policy.


      PFIZER VACCINES APPROVED FOR CHILDREN 12+ :
      On Monday the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that children ages 12 to 15 years old are now eligible to receive the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. Until now, the Pfizer vaccine had been authorized only for people age 16 and older.

      Given this news, our Health Department jumped into action and has already conducted one Pfizer vaccination clinic and will conduct another tonight, to accommodate the newly eligible individuals. Additional dates to administer the Pfizer vaccine to those 12-15 years old are tentative, so please check the Health Department’s  
      Facebook page or Instagram for updates on new clinics.

      Connecticut Drinks On Us: 
      Have you been vaccinated? Then you are eligible for a free drink (at participating restaurants) from May 19th-30th. Customers simply show that they have received one or both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, at which point they can select from a list of pre-set drinks (alcoholic or non-alcoholic) established by each participating restaurant with the purchase of food.

      Here's a list of Fairfield restaurants/bars participating:

      1. Bills Crossroads
      2. Geronimo
      3. Little Pub
      4. Local Kitchen & Beer Bar
      5. Ole Dog Tavern
      6. Puerto Vallarta
      7. Thai Kit. Cheers!

      For more details click here. If you are the manager or owner of a bar or restaurant in Connecticut and want to participate in this program, click here to register.*

      *More details for businesses in the "Business" section below.

      TOWN GOVERNMENT

      ASSESSMENT APPEALS
      If, after receiving a decision from the Board of Assessment Appeals, you are still not satisfied with your valuation, you can make application for remedy to the Superior Court within 60 days from the date of the mailing of a Board of Assessment Appeal's Action Notice (CGS 12-117a).

      If your appeal was denied and you choose not to apply to Superior Court, you may appeal to the Board of Assessment Appeals the following year. If your appeal was granted or granted in part, and you choose not to apply to Superior Court, you must wait until the next revaluation cycle to appeal again. For more resources on this process, click 
      here.
      COMMUNITY NEWS

      FAIRFIELD MEETS UI
      This week I welcomed the new United Illuminating President, Frank Reynolds, to discuss how we can better communicate during storm outages in Fairfield. Our Emergency Management Team has been working closely with UI over the last few months on technological advancements, and I look forward to the improvements we will make to assist our residents during outages in the future. 
      NATIONAL POLICE WEEK & PEACE OFFICERS MEMORIAL DAY
      In 1962, President Kennedy proclaimed May 15 as National Peace Officers Memorial Day and the calendar week in which May 15 falls, as National Police Week. Established by a joint resolution of Congress in 1962, National Police Week pays special recognition to those law enforcement officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty for the safety and protection of others. President Biden has directed all flags to be flown at half staff on May 15, 2021 in observance of Peace Officers Memorial Day. 
       
      “During this week, we honor and remember those who have lost their lives protecting the communities they serve,” Chief Kalamaras said. “We also recognize our current officers who continue to selflessly serve.” A total of 362 officers were killed in the line of duty in 2020 and 119 have been killed so far in 2021.
       
      Fairfield pays special recognition to its Officers whose names appear on the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial; Officer James Cavanaugh (EOW 04/11/1966) and Deputy Sheriff Francis Melville Pike (EOW 05/13/1894) who served Fairfield prior to the official formation of the Fairfield Police Department in 1930.
      Best part of the week was joining Fairfield's finest for lunch today, in honor of National Police Week. Chief Kalamaras scheduled a meal a day for all shifts to thank our men and women in blue. Kudos to retired motorcycle officer Bill Demotses for coming to cook for the department every day this week and to Fairfield resident Daniel Blanco for donating the grill to the Fairfield Police Department.
      SCHOOL NURSES DAY
      School Nurses Day was created to celebrate school nurses and thank them for caring for our children and advocating for improved health services in schools. Fairfield School Nurses rise to the challenge of caring for students across Fairfield every day as healers, comforters, and role models for children. Fairfield salutes our amazing nurses for everything they do, most especially past year!
      APRAXIA AWARENESS DAY
      This week, I signed a proclamation making May 14th Apraxia Awareness Day in Fairfield. Apraxia is a neurological disorder characterized by loss of the ability to execute or carry out skilled movements and gestures, despite having the desire and the physical ability to perform them. Some children may be born with apraxia (CAS or Childhood Apraxia of Speech) although the cause is unknown, and acquired apraxia is typically caused by a traumatic brain injury, stroke, dementia, Alzheimer's disease, and other neurodegenerative disorders. 

      Apraxia Awareness Day recognizes the families, physicians, and education professionals who are dedicated to assisting those affected by this disorder and it encourages further research that can result in earlier diagnosis and better treatment. The Town’s highest respect goes to those suffering from apraxia and commends the members and organizations in our community—especially parents of CAS and SETPA—for their leadership in raising awareness and understanding about apraxia.

      Advocate and Parent of child with Apraxia Trisha Pytko, First Selectwoman Brenda Kupchick, Assistant Technology Specialist for the District and Speech Pathologist Caitlin Carmenati
      FAIRFIELD FIRST RESPONDERS TACKLE AUTISM
      In honor of Autism Awareness Month, Fairfield’s first responders have initiated a voluntary new program to assist them with providing the best service to these important citizens. The program will consist of offering custom decals including the words “FIRST RESPONDER ALERT” and “Occupant with Autism” (see below), which can be displayed on homes, businesses, and or/vehicles.

      Bill Tuttle, president of the Firefighters Union, IAFF Local 1426 said, “These decals will allow responding crews to use our training to deliver the care and respect people on the spectrum deserve. Having the knowledge at an emergency scene sooner lets us tailor our interactions in a way to mitigate the impact of what is already a stress-inducing situation.”

      These decals are provided free of charge by the Firefighters Union in connection with their partners—the Fairfield Police Union, the 911 telecommunicators and AMR, the Town's emergency medical services provider. They will be available at Team 
      Woofgang & Co. at 1300 Post Road for pick-up during business hours or through the Firefighters Union. For more information, please contact Bill Tuttle at (203) 650-2746.
      Please scroll below for more Town updates, COVID-19 Data/Vaccinations/COVID-19 Funeral Assistance, Mental Health Resources, and other helpful information/resources. 

      We Are In This Together,


      Brenda L. Kupchick
      Fairfield First Selectwoman
                                             COMMUNITY EVENTS 
      LET'S MENTION PREVENTION
      May 19 at 7 PM. Please RSVP 
      here.
      I AM VACCINATED – NOW WHAT?
      May 25 at 9:30 AM via Zoom. Tuesday, May 25, 9:30 a.m. via Zoom
      A program tailored to the post-vaccine questions and concerns of older adults • How and when should I resume activities? • What activities are safe and what activities are risky? • How concerned should I be about interacting with non-vaccinated people? • Can my senior center require participants to get vaccinated? • What about the new strains of virus, should I be worried? And much more…

      Virtual Conference with Questions and Answers from two Leading Health Care Professionals: Dr. Vivian Argento and Nurse Ann Dyke. Zoom invite will be sent when you register Click 
      here to RSVP.
      MAKE MUSIC FAIRFIELD 
      Make Music Day Fairfield returns to Fairfield on Monday, June 21 from 3-9PM (EDT). Venues and artists are encouraged to participate in this free event, but must register in advance at 
      makemusicday.org/fairfield

      FAIRFIELD POLICE SUNSET 5K
      July 21 at 6:30 PM... Details HERE
      COVID-19 UPDATE:

      For the most up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, residents can visit ct.gov/coronavirus. You can also subscribe to text message alerts from the state by texting the keyword COVIDCT to 888-777.
      FAIRFIELD VACCINE CLINIC
      As of today, our Health Department has administered more than 
      23,000 vaccinations into the arms of Connecticut residents, which included about 1,000 12-15 year old's. 

      All Fairfield Health Department COVID-19 Clinics are now accepting walk-ins from 11am to 4pm. Our clinics are currently scheduled for 5/20, 5/27 and 6/3, and offer the Moderna vaccine, which is for those 18 and older.

      Check the Health Department’s  Facebook page for updates on new clinics. Appointments are also available through VAMS for any other vaccine clinic in the State.
      VACCINE INFORMATION  
      ALL adults in Connecticut over the age of 12 are eligible to schedule a vaccination appointment.

      *Please note, Pfizer is currently the only vaccine that is approved for individuals 12 years old and up.

      If you fall under Phase 1a, an Educator/Staff in pre-K-12, or a Childcare Provider, you should receive information from your employer or school administrators on how to register for vaccine appointments. For those in the Phase 1b category of 12 and older, you should complete the State form below:

      State Form - 12 & Older
      If you are having difficulty scheduling your appointment through VAMS, here are some links that may be helpful: VAMS Navigation Instructions and How to Create your VAMS Account and Schedule Your First Appointment
        • CT Vaccine Portal for locations throughout the State
        •  Yale New Haven Health - If your Doctor is affiliated with Yale New Haven Health you can create an appointment through MyChart
        • Hartford HealthCare - Hartford HealthCare is taking vaccination appointments for their locations at Sacred Heart University and St. Vincent's Hospital in Bridgeport. For more information, you can find it here
        • Stamford Hospital - You can check your eligibility and schedule an appointment with Stamford Hospital. For more information, please click here
        • Walgreens - There are limited Walgreens Pharmacies who are offering COVID-19 vaccinations throughout CT.  For more information and a list of their locations, please see their website. 
        • CVS - There are limited CVS Pharmacies who are offering COVID-19 vaccinations throughout CT. For more information and a list of their locations, please see their website.
        • Veteran's Affairs VA CT - Eligibility includes anyone who served in the military, spouses of veterans, and caregivers of veterans. Hosting several walk-in clinics. No appointment necessary. 
        Please be aware of two COVID-19 vaccine scams circulating. One scam is a phone call, email, or letter from a vaccine manufacturer (Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, or Moderna) asking for:

        1. Social Security Number to help you get a vaccine appointment.
        You should NEVER give out your Social Security number for the vaccine.

             2. Offering cash rewards or gift cards in exchange for completing a survey. The survey asks for personal information, such as your date of birth and insurance information.
        The vaccine manufacturers will never contact you directly to gather information.

             For accurate and regularly updated information about the COVID Vaccine, please visit the Fairfield Health Department Vaccine update page: 
        https://www.fairfieldct.org/news/?FeedID=4155.
        Fairfield's COVID-19 Vaccine Call Center at 203-256-3082. 
        If you are a Fairfield resident who is currently eligible with questions or are homebound and need to schedule a mobile COVID-19 vaccine appointment, you can call our COVID-19 Vaccination Call Center where a CERT volunteer will assist you in obtaining an appointment. The phone line is targeted to provide support and guidance for eligible vaccine recipients. The call center is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and voicemails will be returned when calls come in outside the operating hours.
        The State Appointment Assistance Hotline is 1-877-918-2224 is available for assistance. Click here for the State Fact Sheet about the vaccine.

        We will continue to post the latest information on the Town website, and the social media pages for the Health Department, the Town of Fairfield and my office. For a full listing of those social media pages, click here
        Fairfield County COVID-19 Vaccine Survey: Fairfield County leaders are inviting community members to share their opinions about COVID-19 vaccines. By taking the COVID-19 Vaccine Survey, you’ll help us better understand the needs of our community during the pandemic and beyond. Please take a few minutes to complete the COVID-19 Vaccine Survey by clicking here.
        Town Data: The Town of Fairfield has had 5,215 cases to date, and 205 of Fairfield residents have sadly lost their lives. Charts and data on Fairfield cases, including daily & weekly changes, age, gender, nursing home statistics, testing results, different trends, and university statistics, can be found at www.fairfieldct.org/covid19data. The Health Department updates this page regularly.

        The Health Department also updates the COVID-19 School Data page, which details the school-related metrics and is updated each week as the State releases the data. The Fairfield Board of Education also has a dashboard on their homepage at https://www.fairfieldschools.org.
        Drive-Through Testing Location: Thanks to a partnership with Yale New Haven Health, Fairfield's drive-through COVID-19 testing location at 140 Mill Plain Road opened Monday, March 1.The location is open for testing seven days a week from 8:30 AM - 4:00 PM to all Connecticut residents and populations, including pre-procedure, asymptomatic, symptomatic, and healthcare workers. We are so excited what this testing site means for our Town in beating this virus!

        You can view a compilation of COVID-19 testing locations, including 140 Mill Plain Road, by clicking the "Testing Locations" button below.
        Testing Locations
        Coronavirus Funeral Assistance:


         
        Feeling in Crisis?
        When you or a family member may be feeling overwhelmed, know that there are free options to help you talk through your crisis--and to send help when necessary. Fairfield Social Services is here to help. Call 203-256-3170 for more information.
         
        Being a parent or caregiver during COVID can be extremely stressful. It is perfectly normal to be experiencing varying emotions and feel overwhelmed. No matter what you're feeling, we're here to listen.  Parents and caregivers can call the toll-free Talk It Out line to discuss their feelings in a judgement-free environment. Call: 1-833-258-5011 or Visit:
         www.talkitoutct.com 
         
        Resources for Mental Health:
        If you or a loved one is struggling:
        CT Information Hotline 211 or go to www.211ct.org for mobile crisis support for individuals and/or children.
        The Hub CT is Southwest Connecticut’s Regional Behavioral Health Action Organization. Check their website for useful resources for mental health, prevention and wellness.  https://www.thehubct.org/
        Mental Health Crisis Text Line - Text “SHARE” to 741741
        National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:  800-273-TALK (8255)
        Kids in Crisis also has a 24-hour hotline for assistance 203-661-1911. 
        NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Health):If you need to talk to someone, text NAMI to 741741 or call the NAMI Helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264).
        Alcoholics Anonymous - Click 
        here to find a meeting.
        Bridgeport Hospital’s REACH Program is an intensive outpatient program (IOP) for children, adolescents, adults and seniors.  REACH is accessible to anyone, and covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and most commercial insurance programs.  Please 
        click this link to learn more about the extensive range of treatment options available
        Dogs on Leashes: 
        After careful consideration with the Town's Director of Health, I have decided to lift restrictions requiring all dogs remain on leashes at our open spaces effective immediately. The Rules and Regulations for Open Space Properties will be restored to their pre-pandemic limits. Specifically dogs will be allowed off-leash pursuant to Section 14 (e),  which requires all dogs to be kept under voice command or leash control at all times on open space areas and 14(f) All dogs shall be kept on leash if the animals are within 100 ft. of parking lots or picnic areas. Note: Effective April 1 dogs are not allowed on public beaches. Click here for a list of open spaces on page 11.
         
        Note: Pets that cannot be controlled by voice commands must be kept on leash.
         
        The decision to return to pre-pandemic rules and regulations is consistent with the State of CT Sector Rules and CDC guidance. State guidance allows low and moderate risk activities.
         
        CDC Guidance (excerpted)
        • Based on the limited information available to date, the risk of animals spreading COVID-19 to people is considered to be low.
        • Treat pets as you would other human family members – do not let pets interact with people outside the household.
        To read the rules and regulation in their entirety click here.
        CONTINUED TOWN GOVERNMENT
         
        Tax Assesor – Income and Expense forms were mailed in April, and are due to the Assessor's Office no later than June 1, 2021. They must be received, not postmarked, by that date or a 10% penalty will be charged.  Income and Expense forms are sent to all Commercial property owners annually.  Additional information and forms can be found here: https://www.fairfieldct.org/incomeandexpense
        Fairfield Public Library – Library Express Service offers opportunities for quick browsing and checkout at both our libraries.  The Fairfield Public Main Library building is open for Library Express Service Monday-Saturday afternoons 1pm - 4pm and Tuesday and Thursday evenings 5pm – 7pm. Woods Branch building is open for Library Express Service 9am - 12pm Monday-Friday, Monday & Wednesday evenings 5pm-7pm and Saturdays 1pm – 4pm.  Learn more about Library Express service.

        Please visit 
        fairfieldpubliclibrary.org for full details regarding Curbside Pickup at the Main Library and Woods Branch Library.   Fairfield Public Library continues to offer 24/7 access to their digital collection of books, music, magazines, movies and databases.  Visit the Library Event Calendar to find a wide and varied assortment of Virtual Programs
        .

        A message from Helene Murtha, Town Librarian:

        As the COVID risk declines, in-person building access will continue to expand. It is our goal to provide access to library services in an environment that is healthy and safe for our community and staff.  We will continue to act on the advice of the Town of Fairfield Health Department, while adhering to CT State directives. The Governor’s May 19th lifting of certain restrictions relates to businesses. Public libraries will continue to consult state public library sector guidance regarding services. Brenda Kupchick, First Selectwoman has advised that Town of Fairfield policy will continue to require face coverings for members of the public entering all Town buildings, for the time being

        As we increase access to our library buildings, certain modifications will remain in place. Face coverings (over nose and mouth) and keeping a social distance is required at all times. Library building hours ensure sufficient time for enhanced cleaning measures. Capacity limits may be instituted at times in order to adhere to social distancing guidelines. The planning and preparation to reopen our library buildings will continue to follow a phased rather than immediate approach. We will move forward efficiently managing our resources, while balancing in-person, remote, virtual and homebound services.  

        We ask that patrons limit the amount of time spent visiting the library. Children’s Department visits should be kept to 30 minutes. Study rooms, meeting rooms, play areas and toys are unavailable at this time. Children must be accompanied by an adult at all times and our youngest patrons must be kept in the immediate vicinity of their caregiver (preferably in a stroller or carrier). No food or drink are permitted in our buildings. Limited public seating will be offered later next month in the reference areas of the Main Library and Woods Branch. Public computer access continues to be available in the reference areas with time limits in place. This month we will begin to offer limited in-person outdoor library programming, while continuing to host virtual programs. Our priority is to sustain and expand library services without becoming a source of viral spread in the community. Updates are shared via our website, newsletter and social media.
        Pequot Library: We're Here, We Care – Pequot Library offers curbside pickup by appointment and limited browsing hours from 3-6pm on Mondays & Wednesdays; 10am-6pm on Fridays; and 2-4pm on Saturdays. During browsing hours visit us to check out a book or view our display John James Audubon's Birds of America: A Return to Pequot Library, on view from February 4 - May 2.

        Outside of browsing hours, enjoy digital programs like story times, author talks, book clubs, and more! Get details on our website and social media:  FacebookInstagramTwitter, and YouTube. Sign up for Pequot Library's Digital Digest eNewsletter or contact our Chief Librarian for personalized book recommendations.
        Bigelow Center and Human Services  The hardest part to getting help is reaching out to make the call to the Social Services office. We are here to help. Please call us at 203-256-3170 Monday through Friday between 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM for more information about financial assistance programs.

        Help Available for Utilities: 
        • Energy Application Assistance- Applications are still available for the Connecticut Energy Assistance Program, which helps with winter heating costs. Fairfield Social Services works with Alliance for Community Empowerment, the local community action agency, for processing of applications. June 15, 2021 is the last day a household can apply to establish eligibility, and May 31 is the last day to submit fuel bills
        • Operation Fuel- There’s still time to apply for Operation Fuel, which can help with primary heat sources (oil, wood, pellets, gas, electric utility) as well as for its program to assist with Aquarion Water bills. Programs ends May 28, 2021.
        Call Social Services for more information on how to apply for either program – 203.256.3170.
         
        Rental Assistance: 
        • Emergency Rental Assistance for Connecticut's Economy – UniteCT. Acting through the Department of Housing (DOH), the State of Connecticut is operating the UniteCT program. This $235 million program will provide rental and utility payment assistance to qualified Connecticut households financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. For program details and application information go the DOH website or call 1-844-UniteCT (1-844-864-8328). 
        Mortgage Assistance: The Connecticut Housing Finance Authority, with financial support from the State of Connecticut, has launched a homeowner assistance program for low and moderate income households in Connecticut who are struggling to pay their mortgages due to the impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic. It is called the State of Connecticut Temporary Mortgage Assistance Program or T-MAP.
         
        Emergency loan funds will be available to help homeowners pay their housing costs, allowing them to remain in their homes as they work to regain financial stability. Eligible Households with incomes at or below 120% of the area median income will be eligible to apply for up to $25,000 in the form of a second mortgage loan. Call 1-860-785-3111 to speak to a Representative to determine if you qualify for T-MAP assistance. For additional information about the program, please visit https://www.chfa.org.

        Emergency Broadband Benefit
        The Emergency Broadband Benefit program provides a discount of up to a $50 per month toward broadband service for eligible households.  The benefit also provides up to a $100 per household discount toward a one-time purchase of a computer, laptop, or tablet if the household contributes more than $10 and less than $50 toward the purchase through a participating broadband provider.  A household is eligible if one member of the household meets at least one of the criteria below:   
        • Has an income that is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines or participates in certain assistance programs, such as SNAP, Medicaid or the FCC’s Lifeline program; 
        • Approved to receive benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program, including through the USDA Community Eligibility Provision, in the 2019-2020 or 2020-2021 school year. 
        • Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year. 
        • Experienced a substantial loss of income through job loss or furlough since February 29, 2020 and the household had a total income in 2020 at or below $99,000 for single filers and $198,000 for joint filers; or 
        • Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider’s existing low-income or COVID-19 program. 
        Emergency Broadband Benefit enrollment will begin on May 12, 2021. Eligible households can enroll through a participating broadband provider or directly with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) using an online or mail-in application.  Additional information about the Emergency Broadband Benefit is available at www.fcc.gov/broadbandbenefit, or by calling 833-511-0311 between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. any day of the week. 
         
        May is Mental Health Awareness Month, a time to highlight the mental health issues impacting millions of lives. Mental Health America began this awareness month in 1949 and they continue to raise awareness every year. This year's theme is "Tool 2 Thrive." It focuses on providing practical tools that everyone can use to improve their mental health and increase their resiliency regardless of their personal situation. In the U.S., 1 in 5 adults and 1 in 6 youth (ages 6 - 17)  experience a mental health condition each year. Even if you don't have a diagnosed mental health condition, you can still take steps to improve your mental health!
         
        Mental Health America has chosen the following themes to focus on this year:
        • Adapting after trauma and stress
        • Dealing with anger and frustration
        • Getting out of thinking traps
        • Processing big changes
        • Taking time for yourself
        •  Radical acceptance
        For a calendar of events for Mental Health Awareness Mont go to: https://www.thehubct.orgmental health.

        Social Services has a new monthly email news update with timely information for residents about programs and services. To see April's update click here.

                                                  BUSINESSES

        Connecticut Drinks On Us: 
        Governor Lamont and the Connecticut Restaurant Association announced the #CTDrinksOnUs campaign, which encourages and incentivizes residents to get vaccinated. To take part in the promotion, customers simply show that they have received one or both doses of a COVID vaccine, at which point they can select from a list of pre-set drinks (alcoholic or non-alcoholic) established by each participating restaurant. 

        The campaign, which runs from May 19–31, limits drinks to one per person and the purchase of food is required. 

        If you are the manager or owner of a bar or restaurant in Connecticut and want to participate in this program, click 
        here to register. Please allow 1-2 business days for your name to appear on the #CTDrinksOnUs campaign page. A list of participating locations can be found at www.ctvisit.com/DrinksOnUs.


        Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF):
        The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced key details on application requirements, eligibility, and a program guide for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RFF). The restaurant industry has been among the hardest-hit sectors during the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. To help bring jobs back and revive the industry, the American Rescue Plan established the $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund at the SBA. The SBA will administer the funds to the hardest-hit small restaurants.

        The RRF is to help restaurants and other foodservice businesses, including food stands, food trucks, caterers, bars, lounges and snack and nonalcoholic beverage bars, as well as bakeries, brewpubs, tasting rooms, taprooms, breweries, microbreweries, wineries and distilleries with on-site sales to the public of at least 33% of gross receipts.

        To apply click
         here.




        SBA Extends Deferment Period for all COVID-19 EIDL and Other Disaster Loans until 2022:
        The U.S. Small Business Administration announced extended deferment periods for all disaster loans, including the COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, until 2022. More information 
        here.

        Paycheck Protection Program (PPP):
        On Monday, February 22, the White House announced targeted changes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) that will provide minority-owned businesses, “mom-and-pop” businesses, and very small nonprofits with access to the support they need.

        Click here to read the announcement and learn more about the steps that are being taken to promote equitable access to this important program. The SBA website also includes tools to help you get matched with a lender or find lenders in your area.
         

        Unless the federal government extends the deadline, the PPP will expire on May 31, 2021.

        The Fairfield Chamber of Commerce office is also open. You can reach them at 203.255.1011 or by emailing beverly@fairfieldctchamber.com.

                                        COMMUNITY RESOURCES

        2021 BEACH STICKERS
        The 2020 Beach/ Transfer Station Sticker expired 12/31/20. Don't wait to buy your 2021 Sticker.  RENEW your sticker online for 2021. You can also renew by fax, mail or in person at Parks & Recreation.
        FAIRFIELD PARKS & RECREATION 2021 SUMMER BROCHURE
        Check out some of the programs and events coming up this Summer ... HERE

                              

        LOVE LOCAL E-GIFT CARD PROGRAM 
        I hope you'll continue to support our local businesses through the Town of Fairfield and the Chamber of Commerce's buy local initiative with the Fairfield Community e-Gift Card program, which is exclusive to Fairfield businesses only. This is a great gift for Fairfield  residents for both holidays and special occasions. More information can be found here.             

        ELDERLY AND DISABLED HOMEOWNERS PROGRAM UPDATE:
        The Governor recently issued Executive Order 10, which includes a provision to eliminate the refiling requirement for those applicants due to refile this year. 

        If you are due to refile this year, you will not need to reapply and your benefits will continue at the same level. The Tax Assessor's office should have sent you a postcard to confirm this the week of February 8th.

        If you are seeking the benefit for the first time, you will need to apply, please contact the 
        Tax Assessor's office at 203-256-3110 and the office will work with you on the process. 

        The Executive Order did not extend the final date to apply by May 14, 2021. If you cannot apply by this date you will need to request an extension from the Office of Policy and Management by August 13, 2021.The Tax Assessor's office will be able to provide residents the instructions on how to request an extension.

        For more information, visit here
        fairfieldct.org/taxrelief
        STRATFIELD VILLAGE ASSOCIATION BRICK CAMPAIGN
        The Stratfield Village Association (SVA) is a certified 501 c3 non-profit organization, which aims to preserve, protect and improve the character of the Stratfield Village neighborhood in Fairfield. On January 13th they announced the launch of a brick fundraising campaign to supplement funding to the Four Corners renovation project. Individuals and businesses will be able to purchase a brick with a customized engraving to be included in the new brick sidewalks that are part of the project. There are a limited number of bricks available because of space constraints.
         
        The SVA’s personalized sales page is at 
        bricksrus.com/donorsite/stratfieldvillageassociation. Bricks can be purchased in two sizes – 4”x 8” for $100 with up to three lines of text, or 8”x 8” for $200 with up to 6 lines of text. Lastly, a corporate sponsor may purchase an 8”x 8” brick with 3 lines of text and include a company logo.
         
        The SVA has raised $910,925 of its $1 million goal for the project to date.
        GET INVOLVED! TOWN BOARD AND COMMISSION VACANCIES
        Interested in giving back to our community? Want to have a voice in shaping Fairfield?  The Town relies on the hard work of citizen volunteers who are appointed to provide guidance and governance on various Boards and Commissions.  The list of vacancies for Boards and Commissions are on the Town Website.  Be sure to check back often as the list is updated as positions become available.  https://fairfieldct.org/vacancies

        You can also visit our Boards and Commissions page to learn more about roles and responsibilities:  https://fairfieldct.org/boards

        To learn about the application process click here: https://fairfieldct.org/appointmentprocess
        EMERGENCY ALERTS | WHEN IT MATTERS MOST 
        Get alerted about emergencies and other important community news from the Town of Fairfield, CT by signing up for the Fairfield Alert system. This system enables us to quickly provide you with critical information in a variety of situations, such as severe weather, unexpected road closures, missing persons, evacuations of buildings or neighborhoods and other emergency situations.

        You will receive time-sensitive messages wherever you specify, such as your home, mobile or business phones, email address, text messages and more. You pick where, you pick how!

        If you were previously registered with us on the CodeRed system, you must sign-up again by following the instructions belowin order to continue receiving Emergency and Community alerts from the Town of Fairfield.

        How to sign up? Click here.

        HELP FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIMS 
        The Center for Family Justice has hotline numbers to those who are in crisis and 
        need our free and confidential services. 

        The hotline numbers are:
        Domestic Violence: 203-384-9559
        Sexual Violence: 203-333-2233

        NEW INTERNET PROVIDER
        GoNetspeed announced their intention to expand to Fairfield in the first half of 2021. This was welcome news for residents who have struggled with internet interruptions. You can read more informatiohere. 
        FAIRFIELD BICYCLE & PEDESTRIAN COMMITTEE: 
        The Town of Fairfield Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee has been working to encourage walking and biking for transportation, recreation, exercise and quality of life.

        Working with multiple town departments we have established
         bicycle routesinstalled bicycle repair stationsworked to improve pedestrian infrastructure, and authored the Town of Fairfield Complete Streets Policy (approved by the Board of Selectman in 2018).

        With more and more of our citizens using our roads, we would like to provide you with some important safety reminders for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers. View the document here.
        COVID CONTACT TRACING
        One of the key tools we have to contain the spread of COVID-19 is Contact Tracing. For this initiative to be successful, the Health Department needs the cooperation of residents who test positive for COVID-19. Both Universities were trained and assisted by our Health Department to manage their own contact tracing for their respective campuses.

        The primary purpose of contact tracing is to identify and notify direct contacts of confirmed cases as quickly as possible and to ensure those exposed are self-quarantining. The information provided in the interviews with confirmed cases helps reduce the potential spread of the virus in our community.


        Any Fairfield resident who tests positive for COVID-19 and has not received a phone call from the Fairfield Health Department or the Connecticut COVID Tracing system within 24 hours of receiving their result is urged to contact the Fairfield Health Department at 203-256-3022. Calls received after hours or on weekends, will be returned by the next business day.
        When to Isolate & Quarantine
        OPERATION HOPE FOOD PANTRY 
        Operation Hope wants to make sure residents of Fairfield are aware that the food pantry remains open and is ready to help by providing food and other basic needs to community residents, as they have for nearly 35 years. 

        Hours of Operation: Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 10:00-12:00; Thursday from 4:00 -6:00. Visit 
        operationhopect.org.

        Important COVID-19 Links:

        Fairfield Health Department coronavirus website:  fairfieldct.org/covid19

        For the latest numbers of cases, deaths and those recovered click here

        For additional data and graphs of activity click here

        For guidance and updates on Connecticut’s coronavirus preparedness efforts, visit: ct.gov/coronavirus

        Contact Information:

        For general questions you can call 211

        Hartford HealthCare’s COVID-19 Clinical Command Center hotline, staffed by healthcare professionals, is now available to the community. To reach the 24-hour hotline, call 860.972.8100 or (toll-free) 833.621.0600.

        YNHH has a call center number it’s 1-833-ASK YNHH that’s open from 7am - 7pm.
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        Contact Us

        Old Town Hall (Directions)
        611 Old Post Road
        Fairfield, CT 06824

        Sullivan Independence Hall
        725 Old Post Road
        Fairfield, CT 06824

        203-256-3000
        Find additional contact info here