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Five Things You Need to Know Today: Dec. 19

An author talk, a "blue Christmas" service and a community vigil for Newtown.

1. Vigil for Newtown. The city of Newton will pause this evening to remember and mourn the victims of the Dec. 14 Newtown shooting. A vigil will be held at 6 p.m. in the War Memorial at Newton City Hall. Members of the community are encouraged to bring letters and cards for Newtown (unsealed envelopes, please), which will be collected in a box at City Hall until Friday, Dec. 21. 

2. Author talk at the library. Author Sanford Levinson will discuss his book, Framed: America’s 51 Constitutions and the Crisis of Governance, tonight at the Newton Free Library. The free event starts at 7 p.m.

3. Having a hard time with the holiday season? St. Paul Episcopal Church in Newton Highlands is offering a "blue Christmas" candlelight service tonight at 7:30 p.m. with a jazz piano meditation. The service aims to provide comfort for those who struggle during this season. All are welcome.

4. Aldermen visits at the senior center. Ward 6 Alderman-at-Large Vicki Danberg is scheduled to meet with constituents this morning at the Newton Senior Center starting at 9 a.m.

5. FY 2014 budget process. That's right, the Newton School Committee has already started its fiscal 2014 budget process. With an override proposed and a continued space crunch, it's going to be an interesting year. The committee started the process Monday night by discussing the fiscal 2014 budget guidelines. The committee will continue discussing these guidelines and likely vote on them next month. The superintendent's budget presentation is scheduled for March. 

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