Dear Neighbor,

At a time of volatility in Washington, I had two goals: to preserve stability in our state policies, and to be attentive to issues that affect the quality of life in our own community. In general, those goals were met.

Robust revenue enabled us to restore some cuts. On many issues, we found common ground.

I’m hopeful. We should celebrate what we have done together.

Here’s an example: A few weeks ago I joined with others for the reopening of the Pond Lily Nature Preserve. I couldn’t believe the difference.

A few years ago that area had sparse vegetation, and the West River was a muddy trickle. The dam installed in 1794 to power a mill had closed off the river, and New Haven’s tidal gates from the 1920’s shut out the fish.

Over the past ten years, first the tidal gates were replaced, then the dam was removed. Volunteers put in plantings at the Preserve for habitat restoration.

Today, the West River is flowing, native vegetation has popped up. It will take a while, but the Preserve looks closer to the way it was 225 years ago. It’s magical. And the fish are coming back.

Much has been harmed, but like the river, much can be restored.

Thank you for your support and confidence.

State Aid to New Haven

  FY 19
Education Cost Sharing $155,415,158
PILOT State Owned Property $5,146,251
PILOT Colleges & Hospitals $36,545,385
Mashantucket & Mohegan Fund $5,503,352
Town Aid Road Grant $1,245,504
Local Capital Improvement $1,870,206
Adult Education $2,272,038
Grants For Municipal Projects $1,369,123
Municipal Revenue Sharing Account (MRSA) $15,246,372
Municipal Stabilization Grant $1,675,450
New Haven Municipal Aid Total $226,743,839

Climate Change: Greenhouse Gases and Rising Sea Levels

In an effort to speed our progress on climate change policies, this year we increased our target to reduce green house gas emissions. We also addressed potential rising sea levels. We will now require that the most recent sea level change update be included in state evacuation plans and various plans of conservation and development.  These projections will be integrated into the state’s coastal management and flood management laws.

Help for Homeowners

Homes in upper Westville have been increasingly damaged by water from underground streams and the high water table. This year we made substantial progress in providing relief.

Here’s how: this spring I secured a total of two million dollars, to cover the cost of inspections, administration, and construction, to be released in two installments. The first installment of one million dollars from the Bond Commission, available later this year, will be targeted to stabilize  homes at the greatest risk. The second million dollars, from the Healthy Homes Fund will be released in 2020. The program will be administered by Capital4Change, the same people who restored homes in the Beverly Hills area, and is intended to stabilize homes.

Holocaust And Genocide Education

I cosponsored legislation concerning Holocaust and genocide awareness in the school curriculum. The stunning events at Charlottesville, when young men in their twenties and thirties rioted wearing swastikas and KKK T-shirts, have given new urgency to efforts to curb hate and increase tolerance.

Preserving Access to Care Through Essential Benefits

This year, we protected access to care -  maternity care and preventive services such as mammograms - by insulating Connecticut from federal changes to the Affordable Care Act. Connecticut insurance policies will be required to cover the ten essential health benefits in the Affordable Care Act.

Minority Teacher Recruitment

In an effort to increase diversity in our classrooms, the State Department of Education will identify successful practices to enhance minority teacher recruitment and develop new alternative routes to certification.

Rep. Dillon In The News...

  • Distributed toys for Three Kings Day
  • Testified at the Commission on Fiscal Stability about research infrastructure and transportation
  • Spoke at Welcome Center ribbon cutting at Chapel Haven
  • Stressed New Haven’s pioneering role in needle exchange and housing at Aidswalk
  • Attended the opening of Pond Lily Preserve
  • Celebrated Artwalk kickoff with Westville Village Renaissance
  • Participated in Sen. Chris Murphy’s panel on biotechnology

Gun Violence Prevention

Connecticut continued its leadership in efforts to reduce gun violence. We banned bump stocks, which turn semi automatics into machine guns.

Protecting Our Safety and Quality of Life: Billboards

When our community alerted me to the safety threat posed by an electronic advertisement, I asked DOT to issue a stop work order because Whalley Ave is a state road. I then authored legislation to strengthen local authority. As a result, a DOT permit now governs the poster, and brightness and illumination can apply to zoning decisions.

The state legislature cannot overturn a local zoning decision, but we can monitor DOT permits and aid local decision makers on pedestrian safety.

Capitol Update 2018 (pdf)