CGA Kickball Classic Success, Black Maternal Health, HB5169 And HB5279 Move On

April 17, 2024

View this email in your browser
Dear Neighbor,

I’m thrilled we were back in session today and we will be again tomorrow. It’s the time of the year when we finally arrive at the floor debate portion for the bills that have made it out of committee and, now, the larger bodies of the House and Senate can speak for or against the legislation before voting. In other words, we are staying busy!
Today we voted in the House on a bill to declare the state candy as the lollipop and the state dog as the . . . wait for it . . .the husky! We also voted on a bill to provide training for Inland Wetlands Commission members (similar to the training that our towns’ Planning and Zoning Boards and our Board of Appeals also receive) and a bill to require fences around swimming pools, more on that below. We also voted on a variety of nominations as well as a few votes on bills from the Judiciary Committee.
We also had a visit from the back-to-back champion UCONN men’s basketball team. They are as tall as you imagine them to be!
Please save the date for a climate conversation and coffee at Little Oak Café on Saturday, April 27 at 9:00 a.m. I’m excited to be participating in this conversation with the CT League of Conservation Voters and the CT Coalition for Climate Action.
Make sure to see the scam alert below about utility shutoffs and check out the other sections on upcoming events.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out if I can assist you in any way with state government-related matters.
Have a great week,


CGA Kickball Classic: Republicans Win, Again, But...
For me, as a member of the “COVID class” of legislators, this game was a way for us to get to know our Democratic colleagues better, but especially our Republican colleagues outside of the building and away from politics. It’s been a way to build relationships and find colleagues on both sides of the aisle who want to work on the same legislation.
Perhaps even more importantly, we’ve raised money for a variety of charities each year. For this year’s event, we donated the proceeds to
The Pink Fund to honor our colleague Rep. Tammy Nuccio, who is battling a breast cancer diagnosis, and The Earl E. Exum Fund to honor the memory of Rep. Tammy Exum’s husband. Please consider donating to one of these charities today and include “CGA Kickball” in the comments/notes.

To see highlights of the game, please click on the video below.

3rd Annual Connecticut General Assembly Kickoff Classic
Climate, Coffee and Conversation in Canton on April 27th
I hope you can join me for Climate, Coffee, and Conversation at Little Oak Cafe in Canton on Saturday, April 27th!
I hope to see you there!
Black Maternal Health 

It is painful to say that in 2024, 22% of Black women receive a lower quality of care than white women and are subject to discrimination in the healthcare field.

As Black Maternal Health Week comes to an end today, we stand in solidarity with Black mothers, in our commitment to address disparities, promote equity, and ensure every birthing experience is met with dignity and support. Let's work together for healthier futures.

Reminder: CT Small Business Summit On Monday 
If you're interested in attending the second CT Small Business Summit on Monday, April 22, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Groton, please click on the flyer below to register.
HB5169: A Life Saver
Today, in the House, I presented a bill for the Planning and Development Committee that I have been working on for two years with Representative Liz Linehan. HB5169, AN ACT CONCERNING THE REQUIREMENT TO INSTALL SWIMMING POOL BARRIERS, is a bill that will save lives and I want to share with you why it’s important.
Inexplicably a couple of years ago, the International Building Code reversed decades of precedent saying that pools no longer require safety fences but rather a retractable cover would be sufficient for safety. I don’t know if you have experience with these covers, but as I have heard from friends when they work, they’re great, but they don’t work a lot.
When we think of swimming pools, we think of the fun we have in them and around them. What we also need to think about is the danger related to them. That danger is the reason why pool fences have been required for decades by building code and by insurance companies, to prevent drownings. We know that children with autism have a greater chance of wandering and while they are not the only children we concern ourselves with, they were certainly on my mind today. So were our seniors who may experience dementia and accidentally wander and fall into a pool. And, finally, so were our pets, most of whom would be prevented from drowning in our pool by an adequate fence.
While my colleagues across the aisle felt that fences (including ones that would need to be erected retroactively) represent too much of a financial ask, I was reminded of the tragic stories I’ve heard of children drowning and the unexpected financial cost of that child’s funeral. In reality, we cannot put a monetary value on an ounce of prevention that could prevent a lifetime of pain for a family.
I hope the Senate will take up this bill immediately and pass it for the safety of all.
HB5279 Is Moving On
Sometimes a bill makes it out of its first committee of cognizance only to be referred to another committee with cognizance over portions of the bill.

Monday, in Planning and Development, we passed HB5279 AAC 

which allows fire or police departments to declare that a death or disability occurring within 24 hours of a shift can be considered for “line of duty” death or injury if strenuous activity was involved during that shift.

I’m grateful we passed the bill through our committee without discussion because our fire and police public servants deserve the care and compensation they earned. For more information on the bill, please click on the article below.

Utility Scam Alert
As utility service shutoffs for non-payment will start again on May 2, the state’s Consumer Counsel is warning residents about a possible scam targeting utility customers whose bills are overdue.

No third-party supplier will ever contact customers with billing issues. Both supply and delivery costs are billed exclusively by the electric distribution company – only Eversource or United Illuminating. If you receive correspondence from anyone other than Eversource or UI about your electric bill balance, you should assume that it is not legitimate.

If you think you have been scammed, reach out to:
  • PURA’s Education Outreach and Enforcement Customer Assistance Unit by emailing
  • Office of Consumer Counsel by emailing
    or calling 860-827-2900
  • The Office of the Attorney General at 860-808-5318.
National Prescription Drug Take Back Day Is April 27th
National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is Saturday, April 27th. The Canton Police Department has been designated as a drop-off location in the area. Please see the flyer below for more details.
Passports To Connecticut Libraries Campaign 
I wanted to remind you about the Passport to Connecticut Libraries campaign that's currently underway. It encourages everyone to read! You can start the journey by picking up a library passport at one of 150 participating libraries.

Just get it stamped before visiting other libraries and receive a token gift. Visit at least five libraries and return your passport to a participating library and you will be entered into a state drawing, one for adults and one for children. Participate for a chance to win a $200 Visa gift card! 

The campaign runs through Tuesday, April 30.
The closest locations to grab your passport are:
  • Avon Free Public Library, 281 Country Club Road
  • Canton Public Library, 40 Dyer Ave.

For a full list of participating libraries, please CLICK HERE.


Eleni Kavros DeGraw
State Representative

Forward to a friend | Unsubscribe from this list | Update subscription preferences