Critical Funding Headed to East Hartford, Manchester

April 1, 2022

Staying Current with Currey
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Friends and Neighbors,

With the final gavel coming down in less than 5 weeks, our joint committees have either completed or are up against their respective deadlines for blowing that final whistle indicating the end of their regular business of the 2022 legislative session. Next stop for many, but not all of these bills, will be the floor of the House and Senate where we will hear what is sure to be robust and passionate debates on the merits of said proposals.

Much like the upcoming final four game (GO UCONN!), I’m sure you’ve all got your DVRs and other recording devices set to watch as legislators hope to provide their own slam dunk on legislation that has been in the works over the past few months and in some cases, for years. I know, these sportsball metaphors are a stretch, but I had to at least take my shot.

One such proposals is addressing the way in which we attempt to fix our disjointed and dysfunctional education funding formula, otherwise knows as ECS (Education Cost Sharing) – the state’s share of our public schools’ operating budgets. This is a student-centered formula that works to address systemic disparities in the educational experience offered to our public school students. 
Last Friday, the Connecticut General Assembly's Education Committee, of which I am a member, voted to pass a legislative proposal that would adjust the ECS formula with a shift to  fully funding our schools, beginning with an initial investment in Fiscal Year 2025. 

With the committee's bipartisan approval of the bill, our state has taken one step closer to fully funding all public schools – traditional/neighborhood, charter, and magnet – and moving the needle on providing our students an education that meets their needs. This is not to say that additional monies will solve all the issues that underfunded and under resourced districts face. Rather, this is providing an investment to move us in that direction while also addressing the "fiscal cliff" some districts face as federal COVID-19 funds expire. Our intent is to make it easier for schools to implement comprehensive, long-term strategies to better meet students' needs and support the educators who are leading this work.
The quality of education a student receives should not depend on their zip code, their family's income, or any other factor beyond the student's control. For more information, and an ability to add your name to our newly created, and ever-growing statement of support, click here.
A special thank you to my legislative partner, Bridgeport Rep. Antonio Felipe and the coalition of organizations – the School + State Finance Project, Educators for Excellence, FaithActs for Education, CT Charter School Association, and ConnCAN – who stand with us and help lead this work. We don’t do any of this alone and we are extremely grateful for their continued efforts.

 To stay up-to-date with everything happening in Hartford, click the "At the Capitol, In District, & Beyond" link below, but also please check out the other subject links in this intro to go right to the topic in the body of this email.

You can find additional resources and information on my web site, If there's something you need help with that isn't included in this email, please check my website. If you can't find what you're looking for there, please don't hesitate to reach out to me.


Yesterday was Transgender Day of Visibility, which is globally celebrated to recognize the achievements of transgender and gender nonconforming folks and raise awareness of the discrimination and risks they face living their lives authentically. By educating ourselves and one another, we can continue the work to create more accepting communities and achieve trans justice. You can find resources and information about how you can serve as an accomplice for trans justice here. While Transgender Day of Visibility is recognized just once a year, it reminds us that's it's important to see people for who they are each and every day.


Overall Summary


Change Since Yesterday

COVID-19 Cases (confirmed and probable)



COVID-19 Tests Reported (molecular and antigen)



Daily Test Positivity



Patients Currently Hospitalized with COVID-19



Overall Summary


Change Since Last Thursday

COVID-19 Associated Deaths*



*Data on COVID-19 deaths is updated once per week every Thursday.

Of the 81 patients currently hospitalized with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19, 28 (34.6%) are not fully vaccinated.

Compared to being vaccinated, being unvaccinated currently has the following relative risk:

  • 3 times higher risk of being infected with COVID-19
  • 4 times higher risk of dying from COVID-19
Click Here for COVID-19 Data Updates
Click Here for Governor Lamont's Updates
Click Here for Information on Getting Vaccinated

Specific Updates for Our Community

Town Total Cases Total Deaths Number of Tests Number of Positive Tests
East Hartford 12,517 196 214,068 15,729
Manchester 10,310 188 207,593 12,600
South Windsor 3,802 65 74,845 4,446

Weekly Update of the Department of Public Health's COVID-19 Alert Map

Medical experts are tracking the most recent COVID-19 omicron subvariant, BA.2. The subvariant is becoming the dominant coronavirus strain in U.S. and could lead to a surge of cases this spring. With at-home testing options and boosters available, our state has the resources necessary to manage another wave of infections. 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have authorized second booster shots for individuals 50 years and older. Vaccines continue to be effective tools in protecting residents from severe COVID-19 infections. To get vaccinated or your booster, please click here to locate vaccination sites in our community.

Below are several vaccine clinics happening in our community:

  • Wednesday, April 6
    • Raymond Library, 840 Main St, East Hartford, 4 p.m. - 7 p.m., for ages 5+
  • Thursday, April 7
    • Charter Oak Park, Charter Oak St, Manchester, 2 p.m. - 6 p.m., for ages 12+
    • Verplank Elementary School, 126 Olcott St, Manchester, 3 p.m. - 6 p.m., for ages 5+
  • Wednesday, April 13
    • Raymond Library, 840 Main St, East Hartford, 4 p.m. - 7 p.m., for ages 5+

Information about getting vaccinated, including how to make an appointment and a list of clinics, is available on Connecticut's Vaccine Portal, here.

If you need assistance finding transportation to and from a vaccine appointment, you can find transportation resources here.

If you're a homebound resident, you can receive your COVID-19 shot at home. Complete the state Department of Public Health's Homebound Intake Form to get the appointment process started.

Testing remains a vital strategy to curb the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. Individuals who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 or have been identified as a close contact of someone who has had a confirmed case of COVID-19 should get tested. There are several drive-up and walk-up test sites in our area for residents who need a COVID-19 test now. Click the links below to find sites near you.

East Hartford

South Windsor

In response to the buzz surrounding the CGA Kickball Classic, House Majority Leader Jason Rojas announced he's getting the ball rolling to create a task force to explore the feasibility of a state kickball team! This is a great opportunity to showcase CT's kickball athletes and energize our kickball fans. Legislative leaders will appoint 9 members to the task force. They will begin meeting on June 1, 2022 and will report their findings on January 1, 2023.


The task force may be a joke, but on Monday, April 11 at 4:30 p.m. at Dunkin' Donuts Park, 1214 Main St, Hartford, Democrats and Republicans of the Connecticut General Assembly will face off in a friendly game of kickball! Proceeds from this event will benefit Connecticut Foodshare and its mission to address hunger in our state. 

Tickets for this great event are $10. You can purchase them in advance here.

On Thursday, the State Bond Commission voted to release significant funding for Manchester and East Hartford. This is welcome funding for our community. The awards are as follows:

East Hartford

  • $556,116 will support the expansion of Intercommunity Healthcare
  • $3 million will support apprenticeship programs for the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology and the Manufacturing Innovation Fund  


  • $500,000 for improvements to Laurel Marsh Park
  • $12.8 million to capitalize state match grants for the State's Drinking Water Program. Several municipalities and wastewater treatment facilities, including the Town of Manchester, for the completion of projects funded through Connecticut's Drinking Water Program fund.

This funding is welcome news for our community. These awards will help advance our state's manufacturing industry by supporting workforce development initiatives at the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology, an organization that offers modernized, world-class instruction and career readiness programs to train the next class of advanced manufacturing professionals in Connecticut.

I am also pleased to see funding to help expand access to high-quality, affordable healthcare for our residents, protect drinking water, and offer residents a place to enjoy the outdoors.

I would like to thank the Bond Commission and Governor Lamont for supporting these initiatives and investing in East Hartford, Manchester, and our region.

    The UConn women's basketball team will play in the Final Four of the NCAA tournament tonight a 9:30 p.m.! To celebrate this incredible feat, Governor Lamont declared this weekend Husky Weekend. Show how you "Bleed Blue" by wearing your UConn Huskies gear, displaying UConn flags and signs, and wearing blue or white. You can read the proclamation and learn more here.
    Last Wednesday, the Senate and House both passed a bill in an effort to release some of the pressure at the pumps. 

    We voted to suspend the 25-cent-per-gallon gas tax from April 1st through June 30th, offer free bus rides through June 30th, and create an additional sales tax-free week on clothing and shoes under $100 during the week of April 10 to 16.

    I'm happy to share that Governor Lamont signed the bill on Wednesday.

    We did our small part, and now it is incumbent upon oil and gas companies to do theirs and do right by consumers and lower their prices. I hope you join me in calling on them to do so immediately.

    We still have to keep an eye on the unscrupulous with respect to gas price gouging. The bill would implement safeguards to allow the state to go after companies that do not lower their prices, but remember, if you see something unusual, say something.

    Tips to File a Complaint:
    • Identify the specific location of the gas station or business.
    • Identify the date and time of the offer or sale
    • Include documentation, especially receipts.
    • Report the complaint online through the CT Attorney General portal HERE.
    This vote is a good start and there's more to come. We call on our partners throughout the state to commit to a fairer tax system that will provide greater tax relief for our residents, especially our low and middle income earners, who continue to feel that strain on their wallets. Please stay tuned as we craft our budget adjustments in the next month or so. 
    With the U.S. Supreme Court posed to overturn the landmark case Roe v. Wade this June, it's important that we take a look at how laws impacting one's right to reproductive choice enacted in other states could impact residents in Connecticut. While our state is largely protected, other states have trigger laws on the books that would take effect if Roe is overturned. Some of these states are working to develop legislation that not only ban abortion services within their borders, but also criminalize healthcare providers that perform abortion services in other states where reproductive rights are protected. 

    Recognizing how these proposals would affect healthcare providers in Connecticut, our state formed the Reproductive Rights Caucus, which I am a member of, to explore strategies to address these challenges. The caucus introduced two proposals, HB 5261 and HB 5414, to expand access to these serves and protect individuals receiving and providing reproductive health services in our state. Both proposals received public hearings and the Public Health and Judiciary Committees approved the proposals. 

    To learn more about this issue and how these bills work to protect access to reproductive choice in our state, please click here.

    In Connecticut, there are over 600,000 private-sector workers who don't have access to an employer-sponsored retirement savings plan? Our state is working to change this and offer workers some more financial security during their golden years and recently launched the MyCTSavings program. This program is sponsored by the State of Connecticut's Retirement Security Authority and offers Connecticut workers the option to enroll in a Roth Individual Retirement Account (IRA). Employers must offer it to employees, but employees do not have to participate in the program. You can learn more about this helpful program here.
    Last week, the South Windsor Planning Department presented its 2022-27 affordable housing plan to the Town Council. The plan would take steps to address soaring housing prices and create a vision to increase the town's stock of affordable housing. In South Windsor, 19% of homeowners and nearly half of renters are cost-burdened, spending 30% or more of their income to keep a roof over their heads. Many of the cost-burdened households are below the area median income. A public hearing on this plan is scheduled for April 16 and the town must approve the plan by June 1. You can read more here.


    Over the past two years, we have seen the impact of isolation on mental health. Below are several resources if you or someone you know is in need of support: 

    • Mobile Crisis Service 2-1-1: If your child is actively harming themselves, having suicidal thoughts, or planning to hurt others, call 911, or 2-1-1 and press option 1 for the Mobile Crisis Service. This is a 24 hour, 7 day a week free service to have your child immediately evaluated by a mental health professional. NOTE: If calling by cell phone, 2-1-1 can also be reached toll-free at: 800-203-1234 
    • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) for English, 1-888-628- 9454 for Spanish, or Lifeline Crisis Chat.
    • Crisis Text Line - Text “HOME” to 741-741, or visit for more info.
    • NAMI Education Courses: The National Alliance on Mental Illness offers online education programs for parents and caregivers to learn more about supporting youth who are experiencing mental health symptoms. The NAMI Basics OnDemand is a free, six-session that can be completed on-demand, at your pace.
    • The State of Connecticut has several mental health resource. Find the list here
    • The Connecticut Children's Behavioral Health Toolkit also has helpful resources for children experiencing a mental health crisis. 
    • State Rep. Liz Linehan's website also has helpful mental health resources for children.
    • WrapCT is part of the Connecting to Care network. WrapCT emphasizes is a holistic approach to addressing mental and behavioral health changes for children and family. Click here to learn more.
    • CHR Health can help young adults and teens who may be struggling with substance use disorder through a comprehensive network of support. For more information about CHR's Substance Screening and Treatment Recovery services, click here.
    Although the rate of suicide in young people is lower than the rate of suicide in adults, in 2019, suicide was the second leading cause of death among U.S. adolescents. Studies analyzing suicide risk have found that overall, more sexual minority and gender minority adolescents will attempt suicide compared to their heterosexual and cis-gender peers. There are resources for LGBTQ adolescents who may need support.
    A lot happens in a child's first three years of life. If you have questions or concerns about your child's development, the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood's Birth to Three program may have some answers. To learn more about this program or to schedule a no-cost evaluation, click here or call 1-800-505-7000.

    AARP-CT offers numerous resources, services, and events for our residents who are over the age of 50. Below are just a few events that may be of interest to you or someone you know. For AARP-CT's full events calendar, please click here.

    Accessing Energy Assistance in Unprecedented Times
    AARP CT’s most recent Telephone Town Hall was held on March 30 and provided an overview of energy assistance available during a time of unprecedented energy prices and inflation. Families and those on fixed incomes are facing costs that simply may not be affordable. You can watch a recording of this helpful event to learn about who qualifies for government programs, about programs that are available for those who do not qualify for government programs, and about weatherization initiatives and home energy audits designed to create energy efficiency. Listen on demand on AARP-CT's Vekeo page or Facebook page.

    Picture Perfect: Smartphone Photography Class: On Monday, March 4 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. via Zoom, you'll learn how to improve your smartphone or digital camera photos and how you can use lighting, color, and composition to take better photos. Because smartphones capture so many important memories, you will also hear about the helpful tools and techniques specifically within smartphones, that help improve image quality. The class will conclude with a live Q&A. This is a free event. Registration is required. Click here to register. 

    Virtual U:  Faith in the Neighborhood SeriesReligious diversity is all around, in these sessions you will learn about the scope of religious diversity in the US and how it shows up in our neighborhoods near and far. Join us as we welcome esteemed educators from the Hartford International University for Religion & Peace. This five-part series opens the conversation for interreligious engagement, understanding culture, customs and clothing while exploring the buildings, calendars and cuisine that is threaded throughout our country.  Session attendees will walk away with knowledge of good practices for navigating the multifaith neighborhood and a pathway to starting the conversation. Session are Wednesdays @7PM. Registration is required. Sessions are live and not recorded. Each session is approved for (1.0) Continuing Education Units by NASW/CT and meets the continuing education criteria for Social Work Licensure renewal and Cultural Competence lisensure requirements. This approval is also applicable for license renewals for CT LPCs, LMFTs, and licensed psychologists.

    Please Note: CEUs are available to Social Workers in states recognizing an NASW State Chapter CE approvals. Click here to learn more.

    4/20/22 - Religious Manyness
    5/4/2022 - Do they Call it “Praying”?
    5/18/2022 - Clothing, Cuisine, Clocks & Calendars
    10/19/2022 - Dating & Weddings
    11/16/2022 - Ten Buildings: What Goes on In There?

    The 2022 Renters Rebates programs in East Hartford, Manchester, and South Windsor are accepting applications. This program offers renters over the age of 65 or renters who are 100% disabled with a limited refund of the rent and utilities they paid in 2021. Below is information on how you can apply for the program if you qualify:

    East Hartford 2022 Renters Rebate Program

    • Apply by calling East Hartford Social Services at 860-291-7248 to request an application be mailed to you or to set up an in-person or phone appointment to assist with the application process. The application is also available online here.
    • Signed applications and required documents can be dropped off in the Social Services office of Town Hall, 740 Main St; returned via fax at 860-291-7304; mailed to East Hartford Social Services, or placed in the green drop box in the Town Hall parking lot
    • Additional information and application assistance is available here.
    • The deadline to apply is October 1, 2022.

    Manchester 2022 Renters Rebate Program

    • The application is available online here.
    • Applications can be returned to the Manchester Town Hall drop box located at 479 Main St. 
    • If you have questions, please call 860-647-3096. 
    • The deadline to apply is October 1, 2022.
    • Click here for more information.

    South Windsor 2022 Renters Rebate Program

    • To complete an application, please call Lindsey Ravalese at the South Windsor Department of Human Services at 860-648-6361 ext. 3319.
    • The deadline to apply is October 1, 2022.
    • Additional information about the program is available here.
    For additional state and local resources, click the links below:

    Residents who may need help paying their water and sewer bills may be able to get assistance through the Connecticut Low Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP). This program can help households whose water has been disconnected or have overdue water bills. Eligible households can qualify for up to $1,000 in water assistance. You can learn more about this program here.
    East Hartford Parks and Recreation is offering semi-private swim lessons for individuals ages 4 and up! Lessons will be held on Monday or Thursday evenings starting March 28 and March 31 at the East Hartford Middle School Pool, 777 Burnside Avenue. Lessons are offered as a 6-weeks session. The fee for residents is $89 and non-residents is $104. Debbee Lewis and Qeanna Rampassard, who are American Red Cross Certified Instructors, will teach the lessons. To learn more and view the lesson schedule click here.

    It's about that time for high school seniors to think about completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) if they're going to be headed to college in the fall. The state Department of Education has some helpful resources for families and college bound students to ensure they can access the financial aid they need to pursue higher education. You can learn more here.
    Not sure what to do with your student over April break? East Hartford Parks & Recreation is offering an April Camp for students in grades 1 through 6! The camp will be held at the Community Cultural Center, 50 Chapman Place, Monday, April 11 through Thursday, April 14 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The fee for East Hartford residents is $25 per day. Camp activities will include crafts, indoor games, and time to socialize with friends. Pre-registration is required. Click here to register. If you have questions or would like more information, you can call the Parks and Recreation Department at 860-291-7160.
    Is your child or do you know a child who's looking for adventure this summer? The state Department of Children and Families is offering its 2022 Wilderness School programming while help to foster team-building, confidence, conflict resolution, peer relations, and responsibility. This year, the Wilderness School will provide a trip specifically for LGBTQ+ youth. There will also be a conservation service work program. The Wilderness School is a prevention, intervention and transition program for adolescents in our state proving expeditions ranging in length from 1-day to 20 days. Excursions include hiking, camping, rock climbing, canoeing, high ropes courses, service learning and more. Click here to learn more about this program.

    Game on! 

    It's spring sports season at our middle and high schools! Click the links below for schedules of this week's games:

    You can also find schedules and results on the CIAC website.

    CIAC Website
    Congratulations to the East Hartford High School girls basketball team for taking home their first state championship title! You can read more about this incredible achievement here.
    The East Catholic High School boys basketball team took home the Division I state championship! This is the team's 7th overall title and 4th since 2014. Congratulations! You can read more about this here.
    Congratulations to the East Hartford High School wrestling team for taking home the 2021-22 State Championship! The Hornets are co-champions with Danbury High School. You can read more about this here.

    In March, Governor Lamont announced an agreement between Sikorsky and the State of Connecticut that could bring new helicopter lines to Sikorsky's Stratford facility, retain over 7,000 jobs, and keep Sikorsky's headquarters in our state through 2042. If approved, this agreement could drive our manufacturing industry's growth, create good paying jobs, and strengthen our manufacturing supply chain. You can learn more about the agreement here

    The state Department of Transportation announced the I-84 Eastbound off-ramp to the HOV lane in East Hartford will be closed temporarily from Sunday, April 3 to Friday, June 3. 

    The lane will be accessible from the left hand on-ramp one mile further on I-84 Eastbound between Exit 58 and 59 in East Hartford.

    Through the state's Department of Labor, the American Job Center offers resources, information, and support for individuals throughout the state searching for a job. You can receive help writing a resume and attend interview technique workshops for those currently on the job hunt. For more information, click here.
    The State of Connecticut is hiring! You can find a variety of seasonal, part-time, and full-time positions. There are jobs open to members of the public as well as those already employed at a state agency or organization. You can find a full list of openings here.
    If you're experiencing unemployment, the WorkPlace's Platform to Employment program can help you get the skills and confidence you need to thrive in your next job. Participants will receive career coaching and paid work experience. The program has a 95% success rate. Virtual classes will begin soon. To learn more and apply, click here.

    Click here for the Town Meetings calendar.

    Click here for the Community Events calendar.

    Click here for information on the East Hartford Public Library. 

    Click here for East Hartford Community Television. 



    Click here for the Public Meetings calendar.

    Click here for the Community Events calendar.

    Click here for information on the South Windsor Public Library. 

    Click here for South Windsor's Government Television Programming - watch LIVE town council meetings! 



    Click here for the Town Meetings and Community Events Calendar.

    Click here for information on the Manchester Public Library. 

    Click here for Manchester Public Television. 

    Upcoming Meetings and Events

    A full calendar of all events happening at the Capitol next week, including public hearings, is available on the General Assembly website

    You can find the agenda for public hearings on the calendar by clicking on the calendar item and following the link to the committee page. For instructions on how to testify at a public hearing, please click here.

    You can view a list of all the bills passed by the House so far this session here.

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    Connecticut House Democrats · Legislative Office Building, Room 4000 · 300 Capitol Avenue · Hartford, CT 06106 · USA