State Capitol Update For The Week of February 1

February 1, 2024

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Dear Friend,

This is my State Capitol update for the week of February 1.

If you prefer to watch rather than read, click on the play button to hear about the issues contained in this newsletter.

With only one week to go before session begins on Wednesday, February 7th, I thought I'd refresh you on various resources which can help keep you informed and updated on crucial developments, events, proposed policies, and key discussions as they happen in Hartford. I encourage you to please follow along and get involved.

Here's how you can stay connected and actively participate:  

  • The non-partisan Office of Legislative Research (OLR) recently released the 2024 Major Issues Report. This comprehensive document highlights and summarizes key issues the legislature could take up during the upcoming session. 
  • You can view the Connecticut General Assembly's upcoming events by checking out its schedule on the CGA official website
  • Follow CT-N for live coverage of committee meetings, as well as House and Senate floor debates. 
  • You can register to monitor any bill's journey as it goes through the legislative process. By signing up, you can enter the bill number and receive real-time updates. Stay informed with email notifications whenever there's a change in the bill's progress. 
  • Visit this website for information on how to testify on a bill at a public hearing.

Together, we can make a positive impact and ensure that our community's needs are represented. 

Here’s a list of today’s topics: 
  • Falls Village Wins Democracy Cup. Click here
  • ICYMI - Connecticut Department of Transportation Updates. Click here.
  • Cornwall, Salisbury & Sharon Awarded Transportation Funds. Click here.
  • Governor Lamont Joins Coalition of Governors Urging Supreme Court to Protect Access to Abortion Medication. Click here
  • CT Department of Agriculture Announces Food System Capacity Building Grants. Click here
  • Upcoming Events. Click here
Falls Village wins Democracy Cup from the Secretary of State 
On January 30, the Secretary of State awarded Falls Village one of four "Democracy Cups" for high turnout in the 2023 municipal elections. That turnout (67.8% of those registered voted in the election) meant that Falls Village was not only the winner in the small town category (by more than 10 percentage points), but actually had the highest turnout in the entire state. 

Congratulations to Falls Village on being an icon for democracy!

ICYMI - Connecticut Department of Transportation Updates
Traffic Control Signal and Pedestrian Control Feature Upgrades
CTDOT is developing plans to replace existing traffic control signal equipment with new equipment to meet current CTDOT standards at 24 locations across the state. The town of Kent will be included in the round of updates at Route 7 (Main St.) at Route 341 (Maple St.). The construction isn't scheduled to take place until April 2026, but CTDOT is now accepting feedback from the public regarding the plans in these early stages. Anyone interested in requesting information on these projects may do so by contacting Gregory R. Palmer, Project Manager at (860) 594-2748 or via email at Please refer to State Project No. 0174-0471.
Tree Removal along Route 361 in Sharon
The Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) announced a tree removal project for safety improvements that will take place along Route 361 in Sharon on Thursday, February 1, 2024, with a rain date of February 8. The project consists of the removal of hazardous trees along Route 361 at 60 Millerton Road in Sharon.
Motorists can expect a road closure on Route 361 from King Hill Road to Sharon Valley Road. The detour will be King Hill Road and Sharon Valley Road. The normal work schedule for this project is from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Motorists should be aware that modifications or extensions to this schedule may become necessary due to weather delays or other unforeseen conditions. Motorists are advised to maintain a safe speed when driving in this area.
Cornwall, Salisbury & Sharon Awarded Rural Transportation Funds
The Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) is awarding more than $9 million in state grants for transportation infrastructure and safety upgrades in ten rural communities throughout Connecticut, three of which are in the Northwest Corner.

The grants are being released through the Transportation Rural Improvement Program (TRIP), a newly created state grant program designed to support rural municipalities, which are often ineligible for many federal transportation programs. 
Among the ten selected projects are:

  • Cornwall: Sidewalk construction on the West Cornwall Bridge ($868,000)
  • Salisbury: Main Street sidewalk construction ($1,145,525)
  • Sharon: Sidewalk rehab Route 41 and 361 ($1,100,000)

The TRIP program is a new competitive grant program supported by state bond funds through the expanded CTDOT Capital Program. In 2023, towns with 50% of the population living in rural areas were eligible to apply in coordination with their respective council of government. Municipalities are required to cover design costs. CTDOT will cover 100% of construction costs.
We significantly increased the funding available for this program in last year's budget, and these projects will protect pedestrians and make our main streets friendlier places to do business. 
Additional TRIP grant opportunities will be announced later this year. For more information on the program, visit

Governor Lamont and Coalition of Governors urge the US Supreme Court to Protect Access to Abortion Medication Mifepristone
This week Governor Lamont joined a coalition of 22 governors from states across the U.S. in filing an amicus curiae brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in the case of Food and Drug Administration, et al., v. Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine, arguing that, if the court allows a recent Fifth Circuit decision to stand, it could undermine governors’ ability to provide adequate healthcare services and would have far-reaching implications beyond reproductive healthcare.
The coalition of governors is known as the Reproductive Freedom Alliance. The group is a nonpartisan alliance committed to protecting and expanding reproductive freedom in the states they represent.
Mifepristone is an abortion medication that has been used by more than five million people since FDA approval, and it is a critical component of reproductive healthcare. The Fifth Circuit’s unprecedented ruling, if unchecked, overrides the agency’s evidence-based scientific approval process, allowing ideological extremists to overrule medical experts and decades of scientific evidence.
The Reproductive Freedom Alliance includes the following governors:
  • Arizona Governor Katie Hobbs
  • California Governor Gavin Newsom
  • Colorado Governor Jared Polis
  • Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont
  • Delaware Governor John Carney
  • Guam Governor Lourdes Leon Guerrero
  • Hawai'i Governor Josh Green
  • Illinois Governor JB Pritzker
  • Maine Governor Janet Mills
  • Maryland Governor Wes Moore
  • Massachusetts Governor Maura Healey
  • Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer
  • Minnesota Governor Tim Walz
  • New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy
  • New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham
  • New York Governor Kathy Hochul
  • North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper
  • Oregon Governor Tina Kotek
  • Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro
  • Rhode Island Governor Daniel McKee
  • Washington Governor Jay Inslee
  • Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers

Governor Lamont announced his intent to join the Reproductive Freedom Alliance in early 2023.

Connecticut Department of Agriculture announces Food System Capacity Building Grants
Eligible applicants include local food policy councils and/or food working groups, agricultural producers, food pantries, and farmers’ markets.
The Connecticut Department of Agriculture will be hosting a Food System Capacity Building Grant Webinar on Thursday, February 8, 2024 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM. Learn more and register here:
Northwest Corner Events
Music in the Nave presents children's concert in Kent on February 11

On Sunday, February 11 at 3:00 pm at St. Andrew's Parish, 1 Main St. (corner of Rtes 7 & 341), in Kent, Music in the Nave presents Poulenc's "Babar," narrated by Margo Martindale.
Music in the Nave presents a classical children’s concert featuring Poulenc’s The Story of Babar
the Little Elephant, narrated by esteemed actress Margo Martindale, accompanied by pianist
Margarita Nuller. The program begins with cellist Eliot Bailen playing his Ferdinand the Bull
with daughter Julia Bailen narrating, followed by Mr. Bailen and Ms. Nuller performing Saint-
Saens's "The Swan" from Carnival of the Animals.
Adult admission is $20; tickets are available at and the door. Free admission for children under 18.

For more information, call 860-927-3486, email, or visit
Kent Memorial Library presents "A Woman I know: Female Spies, Double Identities and a New Story of the Kennedy Assassination" on February 29

Click here or the image below to register. 

ICYMI - Upcoming Events
Optime Pastor – Shepherd, Maker of Good Virtue

The Crescendo Vocal Ensemble and instrumentalists will present a concert of early motets on Saturday, February 3, 2024 at 3 pm at Trinity Church, Lakeville, CT (parking through Dugway Rd. entrance). A brief reception with the performers will be offered after the concert. Please visit Crescendo’s website: for online ticket purchases, more details, and other season concerts, or call 860.435.4866. Tickets will also be sold at the door 45 minutes before the performance. A limited number of tickets is offered to community members for free on a first-come, first-served basis. Request your free ticket by sending an email to

Salisbury’s Jumpfest is February 2, 3 and 4.
You may think the rains erased all the snow around here, given all the brown outside our windows now.  But it's white over at Satre Hill in Salisbury thanks to their state-of-the-art snow guns.

If you have never seen ski jumping live, you have never truly witnessed the sport. Standing amidst the ringing cowbells, with crowds cheering on their favorites, hearing skis slapping against the landing hill as these brave jumpers soar up to 200 feet through the air at speeds up to 50 miles an hour, is something you must experience.
And don’t miss the Human Dog Sled Race.  We only know of a half dozen places or so in the country crazy enough to host it- Dartmouth, NH; Lowell, MA; Michigan Tech U.; Lake Okoboji, Iowa; Lake Geneva, Wisconsin….and Salisbury, CT.

Proceeds from Jumpfest fund SWSA youth skiing programs.
Please check for program changes and schedule updates.

It is my honor to represent our district. I look forward to hearing from you about the issues raised in this newsletter, or any other topics you think I should know about. You can email me at or call me at (860)-240-8585. Thanks for reading, and I wish you a safe weekend.

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Maria Horn
State Representative


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