Dear Friends,

I am pleased to share with you this update on the recently concluded legislative session. Each year, my goal is to forge a path for a stronger Connecticut, and the 2017 session was no different. I worked to pass bipartisan legislation that improves the lives of working families, encourages economic growth, and makes critical investments in the future of our children, as well as our state.

The policies we passed support our small businesses, spur workforce development and ensure that we are making Connecticut more affordable for our young people and our seniors. I am committed to fighting for you and building a solid Connecticut for future generations. Although the regular session has concluded, I will continue to work to keep Connecticut
a great place to live, work, and raise a family.

Our future is stronger when we work together, so please don’t hesitate to reach out to my office if I can ever be of help to you or your family. I hope you find the enclosed information helpful. It is my pleasure and honor to serve as your state representative.  

Sincerely,



Testifying with Lee Ann Gomes, Director of Norwich Human Services, in support of the work The Connecticut Sentencing  Commission and the Special Committee on Sex Offenders is doing in addressing how sex offenders are classified.


Strengthening Laws Concerning Domestic Violence

Connecticut has long been a leader in addressing intimate partner violence with strong policies that strengthen victim safety and increase offender accountability. With this bill, we continue to update our laws to reflect national best-practices by: expanding existing laws on strangulation and stalking; acknowledging the use of social media as a modern means for stalking; increasing the penalty for committing a family violence crime while on probation; and requiring a presentence investigation for anyone convicted of a family violence felony to take into account, among other things, the circumstances of the offense and victim’s attitude. PA 17-31


Preventing Prescription Opioid Diversion and Abuse

This year in Connecticut, more people will fall victim to drug overdoses than from car accidents and gun violence combined.  This session, Connecticut took action and passed legislation to combat drug abuse and addiction.  The legislation reduces the maximum opioid drug prescription for minors from a 7 day to a 5 day supply, requires health insurers to cover medically necessary detox treatment, requires medical providers to discuss opioid risks with patients, and eases restrictions on destroying unused medications. PA 17-131


The Sale of Entertainment Event Tickets On The Secondary Market

This bill will protect consumers who purchase entertainment event tickets from another person or on the secondary market through providers like StubHub and Ticket Network. Under the bill, no one may deny a ticket holder admission to an entertainment event solely because the ticket was resold. It gives consumers the freedom to resell or gift their tickets, and protects the consumer purchasing or receiving that resold ticket. PA 17-28


Protecting Energy Consumer

In response to the Connecticut Municipal Electric Energy Cooperative (CMEEC) board taking expensive out-of-state retreats using ratepayers’ funds, this bill prevents holding meetings, retreats or public hearings outside of the state.  This bill also requires these organizations, along with their member utilities and towns, to post notices, agendas, minutes for meetings and public hearings on their websites.  In addition, it requires CMEEC to undergo a forensic audit and to report annually to the Energy and Technology Committee on the auditor’s reports. This bill also creates the position of a municipal electric consumer advocate to act as an independent advocate for consumer interests which will be paid for by CMEEC. PA 17-73


Protecting Taxpayers

One of the requirements of receiving financial assistance from the state Dept. of Economic and Community Development (DECD) is that a business remains committed to Connecticut.  This bill requires that if the Commissioner of DECD determines that, after receiving economic development funds from the state, a business has moved a substantial portion of its operations outside of Connecticut within 10 years or the term of a loan guarantee, whichever is longer,  the business must repay the full amount of the assistance plus 5%.  This is a tool that will help ensure our taxpayers dollars are not leaving the state. PA 17-162


Jobs

Connecticut’s economy has benefited for many years from our two casinos and revenue sharing partnerships with the CT’s tribes. In recent years, jobs and state revenue have been put at risk by the construction of new casinos in neighboring states. In response, we passed bipartisan legislation allowing the tribes to jointly build and operate a casino in East Windsor. This third casino will not only preserve jobs, but will also create new job opportunities and state revenue. PA 17-89


Honoring Our Gold Star Families

This bill allows municipalities the option to grant a tax exemption to the parents or a spouse of a service member who was killed while performing active military duty, also known as a Gold Star recipient. Any Gold Star parent or spouse can apply for this tax exemption, and it is granted at the discretion of the municipalities.  A municipality may exempt up to $20,000 or 10% of the property’s assessed value. PA 17-65


The Development Of The Connecticut-Made Designation

From Pez to Whiffle Ball to Munson Chocolates, CT manufactures many well-known products. This bill requires the Department of Economic and Community Development to develop a Connecticut-Made or CT-Made Logo that Connecticut businesses can use to promote products that they manufacture or produce in the state.  PA 17-132


Capitol Update 2017 (pdf)