Update From The Capitol & West Hartford

April 16, 2018

Honoring Jewish Family Services and JFS Care At Home.

The past week was a busy one at the Capitol.

Last Tuesday, I led the House in passing two education bills. The first increases the funds a board of education may deposit into a non-lapsing account at the end of the fiscal year – a “rainy day fund” that can only be used for educational purposes going forward. This fund will help protect school districts from unexpected losses of grants or other funding sources going forward.

The second bill will require that plans for reading instruction for children from pre-school through elementary grades are incorporated into plans that the state Department of Education and Office of Early Childhood – with its “two-generation initiative” to help both children and young parents - already develop. Essentially, we will be working to make sure that both children and young parents reach the reading levels they can and should to succeed.

On Wednesday, the House overwhelmingly supported a bill I brought to the floor to protect school districts from unfair state penalties. Simply put, no district that was hit with a surprise cut in education funding by the Governor’s budget office this past year will have to pay a penalty later for having reduced its education spending. The Senate approved the bill overwhelmingly a few hours after the House, and it now goes to the Governor for signature (or veto, though I don’t think that’s likely).

On Thursday, I joined Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman, Mayor Shari Cantor, Sen. Beth Bye and others in honoring Barbara Gordon, a life-long West Hartford resident who had been a friend and mentor to many of us – and who lost her husband of more than sixty years, Mark Gordon, in March. It was a great gathering honoring a wonderful person. Barbara offers sage advice, warm support and fresh-baked brownies to her friends on a daily basis, and well deserved the recognition.

On Friday, I was happy to join Mayor Cantor and Sen. Beth Bye in honoring Jewish Family Services and JFS Care At Home, which became the state’s first organizations to earn certification for “Getting It Right: Creating an LGBT Inclusive Organization.” This program involves training and resources supporting practices of intentional inclusion for individuals who are part of the LGBT community. A happy way to end a busy week!

Best wishes to you and your family for the rest of this week.