FIRST UP on GMW: ABC of Wilton Celebrates 25 Years * Bonus Sales Tax Free Week * Landscaping Employee Dies in Wilton Accident

FIRST UP on GMW is an occasional column that highlights shorter announcements or updates, and helps you get a quick start to the Wilton news of the day. Have a news tip, item or something you know people are chatting about? Email us at editor@goodmorningwilton.com.

ABC of Wilton Celebrates 25 Years

A Better Chance of Wilton (ABC) celebrated 25 years as a high school community-sponsored program on Sunday, April 10 with a festive party at the Carriage House at Ambler Farm. The festivities recognized the communal successes of ABC’s historic 53 scholars and the town’s cultural growth from their diversity and enthusiasm.

Pictured above: Former ABC Scholars and Board Presidents reunited at Sunday night’s A Better Chance of Wilton’s (ABC) 25th Anniversary Celebration. Pictured: Chris Payne WHS 2008; Former President Marylynn Clune; Elijah Everett WHS 2008; Former President Lynne Vanderslice; and Jeremy Lewis WHS 2009.

As one of only 22 national community-sponsored programs, ABC Wilton has graduated 53 scholars who have attended college and embarked on careers in technology, business, finance and social services.

ABC’s mission is to invite academically talented high school students from underserved communities to live in town and attend Wilton High School. The program provides guidance and daily support for the participants, who are joined by Wilton host families on the weekend.

“The education is the main thing but a large part is the experience,” Monei Walker, a past scholar of ABC Wilton, recalled. “I came to meet people, make connections… It’s a family here.”

The program relies exclusively on private donations and fundraising events within the community, with all of the monies raised supporting the program’s efforts. The program benefits from having the full backing of the Wilton High School administration, the Board of Education and the town itself. However, a critical element of support that fosters success is the involvement of ABC volunteers: a working Board of Directors, host families, drivers, college coaches and scholar advocates.

Residents Can Take Advantage of Sales Tax-Free Holiday Week

Connecticut residents are used to having a week of holiday from paying sales tax on certain items every August, usually right before the start of school. But now, there’s a bonus week of tax savings that Nutmeg State residents can enjoy starting Sunday, Apr. 10 through Saturday, Apr. 16.

Thanks to legislation passed last month, purchases of most clothing and footwear priced less than $100 an item will be exempt from Connecticut’s 6.35% sales tax.

The sales tax holiday was part of a bill to help CT residents save in several areas — it suspended Connecticut’s gasoline tax as well as fares on public buses from April 1-June 30. The legislation was passed by the CT legislature and signed by Gov. Ned Lamont in March.

“With this bipartisan action, we are taking steps to provide some relief to consumers as they face rising prices due to a number of international dynamics and market instability that go far beyond our state,” Lamont said in a statement, adding that he was ready to “use every tool available” to help residents find relief.

The list of apparel and footwear that qualify under the sales tax holiday for April is very similar to items that are exempt from sales and use tax in August. However, the April 2022 Sales Tax-Free Week does not exclude items considered “special clothing or footwear primarily designed for athletic activity or protective use.” In addition, sales of wallets are not subject to tax during the April week, even though they are typically excluded from the tax holiday in August.

For more information or to check specific items considered exempt from sales tax during this week, visit the CT Department of Revenue Services website or call 800.382.9463.

Landscape Company’s Truck Runs Over, Kills Employee in Wilton

An employee of a landscaper working in Wilton was killed Saturday morning when he was hit and run over by one of the landscape company’s trucks.

Wilton police, firefighters and EMS responded to a call at 77 Danbury Rd. at approximately 10:35 a.m. on Saturday morning, April 9 for what officers said was a vehicle crash involving a pedestrian. On the scene, responders said they learned a landscaping truck had run over an employee of the landscaping company, and the employee was trapped under the vehicle.

The Wilton Fire Department moved the vehicle to extricate the victim, later identified as Norwalk resident Adolfo Guitierrez Sanchez.

A report issued by Wilton Police Public Information Officer Lt. Gregg Phillipson said Sanchez was unresponsive and life-saving efforts were made but were unsuccessful. Sanchez was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Wilton Police Crash Reconstruction Team is continuing to investigate this incident. Anyone with information related to this incident is asked to contact Phillipson by phone at 203.834.6325 or via email. Contact can also be made anonymously through the anonymous tip line at 203.563.0256 or via email.