Sine Die!

May 10, 2024

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Dear Neighbor,

The end of session was a whirlwind of bills, emotions, and last-minute negotiations. We passed some really good bills. We saw some other great bills die on the Senate calendar (maybe a few on the House calendar, also). We fought. We compromised. We did our best to put the people of Connecticut first. And, I hope the majority of us did it because we believe in democracy, in public service, and in leading with love.
While the session may be over, the work continues in-district throughout the year. I look forward to seeing all of you around the district. As always, I do hope that if there is anything we can help you with you will reach out. Constituent services are the best part of the job!
Have a great weekend,


Bipartisan Spending Stabilization Plan Passes
We passed a bipartisan spending stabilization plan, ensuring our two-year state budget's historic tax cuts are protected. We invest in the priorities that matter to you.
Remember, the two-year budget includes:
  • The Largest Income Tax Cut in State History
  • Investments in Public Education
  • New support for the IDD community
  • Expansion of Debt-Free Community College
  • A Strong and Vibrant Safety Net of Programs

We used remaining federal American Rescue Plan Act funds to provide support to some important priorities such as:

  • Higher Education - $160 million
  • Early Childcare - $21.8 million
  • Mental Health - $24 million
  • Nonprofits - $50 million

We are putting more than a billion dollars into the state's Rainy Day Fund and paying down pension debt.

I am proud to report that Connecticut is set up to succeed financially in the present, as well as the future. 

A Thank You To Our Families
A Look At Bills That Passed... and Didn't 
We had some great bills pass and we had some great bills die. Here are a few of the bills on either list for your consideration.
Bills passed by both chambers:
  • HB5399 AAC THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE RESPONSE TO SEXUAL ASSAULT Obviously, this one means a lot to me as I’ve been working on it for months with my colleagues, the CT Alliance to End Sexual Violence, Avon’s Chief Melanson, and the State’s Attorney’s office. The model policy resulting from this bill will make the process of reporting sexual assault better for women (and in some cases, men) everywhere.
  • HB5474 AA REQUIRING MUNICIPAL REPORTS CONCERNING RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION APPROVAL TO THE OFFICE OF RESPONSIBLE GROWTH became our omnibus Planning and Development and Housing bill. In addition to ask municipalities to send the permitting information on housing (accepted and denied), this bill also allows for the conversion of vacant nursing homes to multifamily housing, has multiple blight provisions to assist municipalities in tackling this persistent issue, allows municipalities to license short-term rentals, and requires landlords to provide 45 days’ notice of a rent increase, among others. 
  • HB5198 AAC Telehealth One of the good things to come out of the COVID-19 pandemic was the ability to have telehealth appointments. This bill extends telehealth through 2027.

Bills that passed the House and died in the Senate (primarily to running out of time):

  • HB5004 AAC THE IMPLEMENTATION OF CERTAIN CLIMATE CHANGE MEASURES This bill would have implemented nature-based solutions, moved us closer to our greenhouse gas emission goals, and had significant incentives for businesses and municipalities engaging in climate-based solutions.
  • HB5390 AAC TRANSIT ORIENTED COMMUNITIES Also known as the Work, Live, Ride bill. This bill would have empowered municipalities to build transit-oriented communities while prioritizing funding to those communities.
  • HB5272 AAC THE ENFORCEMENT OF REQUIREMENTS IMPOSED BY CERTAIN MUNICIPAL APPROVALS AND THE NEW HOME CONSTRUCTION GUARANTY FUND This one is especially disappointing as it sought to address the situation with Sunlight Construction that caused both homeowners and prospective homeowners in Avon, Burlington, and Simsbury to lose money or to have unsafe conditions in their development. We will return to this bill.
  • HB5169 AAC THE REQUIREMENT TO INSTALL SWIMMING POOL BARRIERS It’s incredibly disheartening not to be able to pass a bill through both chambers that would save children and others from drowning. We will revisit this next year.

Bills that passed neither chamber:

  • SB148/HB5312 Both of these books sought to solve the electronic book licensing issue that libraries across Connecticut are facing. We will continue to work on this in the offseason, including by discussing the issue with other state legislatures with the hope we can mobilize a national effort.

For a complete look at bills that have passed, please click on the image below.

CT Main Street Center Award Winner
Thank you to the Connecticut Main Street Center for recognizing my work to revitalize our towns and cities by addressing blight. When you’re doing the work on wonky bills, you are focused on the impact on them to towns and cities and the work can be a little abstract. It’s nice to be reminded that work like this matters in big and small ways across our beautiful state.
In The News
I'd like to thank Brian Schactman for having me in the studio at WTIC on Monday. We talked about Canton, Avon, and a lot more. The interview was pretty lengthy. If you're interested in checking it out, please click on the image below.
Public Input & Info Session coming up in June for Avon Residents
Avon residents will have an opportunity to provide feedback on the Old Farms Road Phase II East/West Section during a Public Input and Info Session in the Community Room at the Avon Senior Center on Monday, June 10th, beginning at 6 p.m. Please see the flyer below for more details.
Scenes From The Last Days of Session 2024
It's Teacher Appreciation Week
It’s Teacher Appreciation Week. Thank you to all of the amazing teachers in Connecticut for the wisdom and dedication you show our kids each and every day!
I’m making it right under the deadline for today, but I wanted to share my gratitude for my piano and music teacher from my elementary and middle school years, Mrs. Liz Anderson. I can still remember playing Mrs. Deborah Read Franklin to my buddy David Tenenbaum’s Ben Franklin, in one of our many productions, “Frankly Franklin.”
Mrs. Anderson like all good teachers made each of us feel like we were capable of anything. She inspired me to challenge myself and to believe that I loved challenges (that lesson might have taken too well). She helped me reach for excellence at the piano and singing and I am so grateful to have had her in my life.
That’s what great teachers do, they make differences, big and small, that carry with us throughout our lives. We need to support them. We need to value them. We need to respect them for their ability to inspire and we need to pay them well! This may be National Teachers’ Day, but any day is a good day to thank a teacher.
Happy Mother's Day
Happy early Mother’s Day to all of the mothers, grandmothers, step-mothers and like-a-mothers. Thanks, especially to my mom, Dianne, and my grandmother, Irene, pictured here.

Eleni Kavros DeGraw
State Representative

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