Town Hall Meeting With Legislators Thursday

by Christopher O'Brien
Rep. Rob Sampson

Rep. Rob Sampson

By Chris O’Brien – Wolcott Whisper State Representative Rob Sampson and State Senator Joe Markley will be holding a Town Hall forum Thursday evening from 6:30-7:30. The meeting is being held one month into this year’s legislative session and one day after Governor Malloy is expected to give his proposal to a two year state budget on Wednesday.Sampson has introduced 30 bills for this legislative session. Many of these deal with criminal penalties for using a gun in certain crimes. He has also tackled many fiscal issues, calling for a state spending cap, ensuring tax refunds can be given with checks instead of debit cards, and repealing the state’s real estate conveyance tax.

Sen. Joe Markley

Sen. Joe Markley

Last year, Gov. Malloy enacted the largest tax increase in state history. Yet, while the tax increase was passed in April, the tax was applied retroactively to January 1st, creating some Cosntitutional problems. Sen. Markley investigated whether or not this practice was legal, and foudn out that it was. Both legislators have introduced a proposal that would prohibit the practice in the future.

Sen. Markley has introduced 48 proposals including measures that would increase the threshold for public works projects that would be subject to a prevailing wage. When Wolcott was building its Youth Center, there was some concern that the cost of the project might run close to the threshold. If the town had gone a single dollar more, they would have had to pay back contractors on the project a higher amount. This would be a strain on the town’s budget and tax rates.

Markley has an eye on developing programs at the state’s Technical High Schools to boost the state’s manufacturing sector. Markley is also proposing penalties for the sale of bath salts, which has been a new drug fad in the state. He also has a number of proposals to reform the state’s fiscal safety net and workman’s compensation system. These programs have been faulted in part for the states’ budget problems and keeping jobs in the state.

Wolcott’s also legislators have introduced legislation to name Route 322 in honor of longtime former State Rep. Eugene Migliaro who also briefly served as mayor and was the state’s Veterans’ Commissioner under Governor Rowland.

Sen. Joe Markley

They have also both asked to reintroduce the state’s death penalty which was repealed last year, and calling upon the legislature to repeal municipal mandates.

Both legislators were at the forefront of opposing the Governor’s proposal to forcibly unionize home health aides last year. This year Markley is asking for a legislative study on the home healthcare system and Sampson is introducing two measures – one which would prohibit union fees to be taken out of aide’s paychecks without their consent, and another similar proposal which would apply to state employees.

A full list of Rep. Sampson’s legislative proposals can be viewed HERE. Sen. Markley’s list of 37 proposals can be viewed HERE.

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