Posts tagged ‘Legislature’

December 19th, 2012

After Massacre, Sen. Looney Vows Gun Control Fight

by Christopher O'Brien

Paul Bass | New Haven Independent

As the horrific details of the school shooting rampage in Newtown continued trickling out Saturday, New Haven state Sen. Marty Looney promised a push to strengthen Connecticut’s gun-control laws. Looney (pictured) made that vow in an interview as New Haveners came downtown for a 6 p.m. vigil on the Green on behalf of the 26 students and adults massacred at Sandy Hook elementary school by a gunman who then killed himself.

The shooting provoked a national outpouring of grief—and an immediate call for a resumption of efforts by gun control proponents to take on the NRA and pass tighter legislation. Looney, a Democrat who’s now the Senate majority leader, cosponsored Connecticut’s assault-weapons ban (with a Republican, then-state Sen. Bill Aniskovich of Branford). The ban passed into law in 1993.

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November 23rd, 2012

Connecticut’s Fiscal Cliff

by Christopher O'Brien

Sen. Joe Markley

By Sen. Joe Markley

You may have heard that our state is facing a ‘gloom and doom’ budget scenario: a $365 million hole this fiscal year, and deficits of over a billion dollars in each of the next two years.

The current budget took effect just four months ago, but already revenue is down sharply, and spending is up.  The causes are clear, and not surprising:

  • People are not buying goods, so sales tax collection is less than expect.  Corporation tax revenue and money received from the state’s casinos have also declined.
  • Medicaid costs have increased by over $260 million
  • Personal expenses, salaries, and overtime for state workers is up over by $10 million

A November revenue report by the Office of Policy and Management and the Office of Fiscal Analysis (the state’s number crunchers) has just announced the alarming $365 million shortfall. As recently as November 1, the administration projected a deficit of only $61 million.

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November 5th, 2012

WIll Voting on “Women’s Issues” Really Change Anything?

by Christopher O'Brien

It is often said that fear drives more voters than facts. And throughout this election we are all shutting off the TV and banging our heads against the wall wringing our hands of all the negative ads on TV. It seems to be worse than usual. Yet, one of the themes throughout the year has been ‘women’s issues’. Now, when President Obama or Chris Murphy or any other Democrat brings up “women’s issues”, we all know that they are not talking about the issues that most women have on the forfront in their minds: The economy, jobs, healthcare, education, childcare, faith or marriage. You know.. the the issues that we deal with almost every day. No, they are only talking about ONE issue: Abortion.

The fear that these candidates send is that Roe v. Wade will be overturned. Could it be? And what would that mean? What is the reality of how quickly, or how much impact your vote for a ‘anti-choice’ candidate make on this issue? Let’s talk about this in the proper context.

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November 4th, 2012

State Senate, House Candidates Q & A

by Christopher O'Brien

The candidates for State Senate and State Representative attended a forum two weeks ago on moral and ethical issues they may need to vote upon if they are elected to represent Wolcott and Southington next week. The forum was held at St. Pius X Church and was sponsored by a coalition of local churches and the Connecticut Catholic Conference.

Participating in the forum were State Representative candidates Rob Sampson (R, I), and Charles Marsella (D, WF). Also were State Senate candidates Joe Markley (R) and John “Corky” Mazurek (D, WF).

Below are some of the positions outlined by the candidates:

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November 4th, 2012

State Legislature Debates on TV, Whisper

by Christopher O'Brien

Two debates were held between the two candidates for State Senate and State Representative in the past month. One of those is being televised on Comcast Ch. 96 all day today (Sunday). Tune in to be informed on their positions. Current Town Councilman Charles Marcella is challenging State Rep. Rob Sampson for a two year term. Former state representative Corky Mazurek is challenging current state senator Joe Markley for a two year term in the State Senate.

Another debate from St. Pius Church was audiotaped by the Whisper. We are attempting to upload this file today. If we are unable, we will print highlights from it.

The Connecticut State Legislature actually affects Wolcott residents in many ways greater than the US Congress. The purvue of the legislature in the last two years has considered wide ranging bills on teaching and education performance, the Governor’s controversial “First Five” program and large tax increases. They also deal with justice issues, providing funding to cities and towns, set policy about highway and road construction and distribute much of the funding back to municipalities like Wolcott for those. Bonding issues, economic climate, and environmental policy also is set by the legislature.

August 12th, 2012

Andrew Roraback

by Christopher O'Brien

Biography

Andrew Roraback is the 5th generation of his family to live in the northern Litchfield County and comes from a long tradition of Rorabacks schooled in law and politics. One of his relatives, Henry Roraback was the most power Republican from 1912 and 1935, having passed the State Bar without any schooling and also founding CL&P. Another prominent relative is Catherine Roraback who was the lead attorney in the landmark Supreme Court Case Griswold vs. Connecticut. That case established expanded privacy rights under the ‘penumbra of the Constitution” and is given credit for the later Roe v. Wade case in 1972 legalizing abortion.

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June 8th, 2012

Malloy Vetoes Local Vote Request

by Christopher O'Brien

By Christine Stuart

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy vetoed a bill Wednesday that would have given local election officials discretion in deciding how many polling locations to open for a party primary. The measure also would have helped cities and towns save money.

In his veto message Malloy said he understands it may have saved municipalities money, but it has the “potential for undermining the right to vote.” That’s largely what made the bill “unacceptable” to him.

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Related: More turkeys than people voted during the latest primary here

June 30th, 2011

How Much Will Wolcott Lose in ‘Plan B’?

by LonSeidman

After last week’s union rejection of an agreement with state government, the pointing of fingers has begun. Yet, those fingers aren’t willing to plug the $1.4 to 3 Billion leak in the state budget’s dam. But what exactly will change is yet to be seen. Constitutionally, it seems that the legislature is in control of the state budget still. Even after adjourning their session on June 8th, it is that branch of government who controls the state’s purse strings. Last Friday the Governor ordered them back into session. If he could make budget cuts – or at least budget cuts to the extent necessary to balance the budget – himself, he could have done so without summoning them back to the Capitol.

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February 21st, 2011

Tuesday’s Special Elections Could Impact Governor Malloy’s Tax Hike Proposal

by LonSeidman

Special Elections will be held in the shaded areas. State House races are in yellow, Senate in green

Shortly after taking office, Gov. Malloy needed additional staff to run his administration. Being the first elected Democrat to the office in 20 years, he looked to those with experience within his own party. This prompted a tidal wave of resignations of 8 of the most prominent legislators from the state house and senate. A 9th legislator – Sen. Tom Gaffey of Meriden – resigned for unrelated reasons stemming from larceny charges where he double billed the state for expenses for himself and his girlfriend.

Special elections will be held this Tuesday to ensure that the 18 towns affected have proper representation. The legislature has been in session for just over a month, although no meaningful legislation has been voted upon except in committees which are currently reviewing bill proposals. Once the new legislators are elected though, they will hit the ground running to analyze Gov. Malloy’s budget proposal. How many seats Republicans pick up could have an impact to whether Malloy gets what he wants, or an alternative plan is approved.

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January 13th, 2011

New Law Ideas Due This Week

by LonSeidman

Wolcott has new representation in Hartford and both State Representative Robert Sampson and State Senator Joe Markley are busy filing bills. If you have any ideas on what you would like to have proposed during the 2010 session, try to get your ideas to them this week. Their contacts are below.

Sampson already has a list of bills he is prepared to introduce here.

Among his proposals are holding public hearings before a group home is located in a residential neighborhood, reducing unfunded mandates and making English the official state language. He also has introduced a variety of hunting and fishing bills.

Joe Markley – Joe.Markley@cga.ct.gov or 1-800-842-1421
His Aide is Pam Salamone who will be able to assist with any constituent services as well.

Rob Sampson – rob.sampson@housegop.ct.gov
1-800-842-1423
Sampson’s aide is David Williams