Morning Mix: 5 things you need to know for Thursday

Good morning! We hope you’re having a great week so far. Here’s what you need to get your Thursday off to a good start in Greater New Haven:

• Boys and Girls Village in Milford starts construction on a new facility on Wheelers Farms Road:

Several state officials, including Gov. Dannel Malloy, donned hard hats and picked up shovels Wednesday to help break ground on the new building. Also present for the groundbreaking were families the BGV has helped.

The BGV had received a $2.16 million state grant to expand after experiencing unprecedented growth in the needs for its services, which help Connecticut’s most vulnerable, at-risk and underserved children and families. The group works in 50 communities across the state and has been helping people for more than 70 years.

See more photos from the groundbreaking in the gallery above or click here.

• New Haven’s alders look for answers about proposed city job cuts:

A new proposed city budget from New Haven Mayor Toni Harp calls for the elimination of 18 jobs but some alders are questioning whether the cuts are being made in the right places.

City Budget Director Joe Clerkin said “everything was on the table” when the city found out it would have to close a hole created by a $4.6 million decrease in expected state funding.

The 18 positions were supposed to be new hires and five new school crossing guards, two police body camera specialists, an urban design coordinator, three new library positions and three new maintenance workers for the Department of Parks, Recreation and Trees.

Alder Alphonse Paolillo Jr. and others on the finance committee asked whether the fiscal pain had been appropriately spread throughout the city’s government or whether some departments were unfairly spared.

The committee is only days away from voting on a spending proposal to send to the full Board of Alders. Read more on the budget situation.

• A union leader is trying to fend off big changes to Wallingford’s school cafeteria operations:

The union that represents food service workers in Wallingford’s public schools says its ready to make a big concession if the town will keep operations in-house instead of hiring an outside contractor.

Union President Deborah Baruch said Wednesday that United Public Service Employees Union Local 424, Unit 30 is willing to make the food service director a non-union position. Baruch says that will save the town thousands of dollars on pay and benefits.

School board members have already voted to allow Superintendent of Schools Salvatore Menzo to start negotiations with an unnamed outside vendor. But the union members say they fear that could result in job cuts or lower pay and benefit packages. Read more on the situation.

• A zoning change in New Haven could allow more residential development:

City leaders are set to hear Thursday about an idea to change its light industrial zone to allow for narrowly defined residential development.

The City Plan Department also wants to require a special permit for anyone looking to put a storage facility in a property with such a zoning designation.

That request comes as U-Haul is considering development at the former trolley barn in the 1100 block of State Street.

The current zoning designation would allow for a storage facility but New Haven’s economic development officials have said they think it would be better to convert old industrial buildings into housing units or job-creating businesses. Read more on the zoning changes slated for debate Thursday.

• Summer food, festivals and performances will abound this summer in New Haven:

Looking to have some fun this summer? Then the Elm City is the place to be, according to city officials and dozens of event organizers who turned out Wednesday at City Hall.

More than two dozen events are planned over the next two months, including late July concerts by R&B/pop group En Vogue and 1980s pop star Debbie Gibson.

“I think we have more events and a more diverse lineup of events than I have seen in the city in 20 years,” said Anne Worcester of Market New Haven.

The fun won’t just been in music. Also on the slate: the International Festival of Arts & Ideas and the second New Haven Grand Prix bike race. Check out the full calendar.