Currey-ently seeking more sunlight

March 8, 2023
Get that sun tan lotion out and dust off that speedo because this Sunday we “Spring forward” and get ourselves a full hour of extra sunlight! Ok, maybe the summer provisions are a bit premature, but with Spring blooming a week after we adjust our clocks and change out the batteries in our smoke detectors, it’s never too early to start thinking about the warmer weather and what that means for some of our kids when the final bell has rung on the 22-23 school year.
As a teenager, only a few short years ago (watch it! haha), I remember feeling too old to be a summer camper and too young for, well, basically everything else. Luckily, for those in-between years and even a bit beyond, Connecticut offers up some great summer youth employment opportunities here in the North Central Region. In collaboration with East Hartford Works! and the Town of East Hartford, Capitol Workforce Partners works to connect youth between the ages of 14 and 24 with ways to, "explore their interests and career pathways, develop workplace skills, and engage in learning experiences that help in developing their social, civic, and leadership skills" – skills that we as adults continue to develop and grow. Click on the Employment link in the table of contents below for additional information.
So as you set the clock ahead, flip your mattresses, and wash the pillows (maybe do that more than once every six months?), remember that Summer will be here before you know it and there’s no better time than now to start planning!

Jeff Currey
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.

The road show continues! Over the last two weeks, I visited:
  • Kelly Steam Magnet Middle School (Norwich)
  • Teachers Memorial Global Studies Magnet Middle School (Norwich)
  • John B. Stanton Elementary School (Greenwich)
  • Western Middle School (Southington)
  • Southington High School (Southington)
  • Enfield High School (Enfield)
  • Jefferson Elementary School (New Britain)

Thank you to State Representative Derell Wilson, Representative Hector Arzeno, Representative Rachel Khanna, Representative Poulos, and Representative Bobby Sanchez for helping to organize these stops in their communities. Being able to get out into the schools and hear directly from students, educators, and administrators helps to better inform the decisions we’re making on the Education Committee and in the General Assembly.

A special congratulations goes out to the students at Enfield High School who were one of only a few dozen schools awarded federal dollars through CT’s Voice4Change program, a civic engagement initiative that empowers high school students to re-imagine their schools. Enfield’s project, United Sound, had me giving a standing ovation while watching and listening to students use music to remove barriers and bring about social change.

Last year, as the House Chair of the Commerce Committee, we introduced legislation to create the America 250 | CT Commission to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, which will take place in 2026. The Commission, later created by the Governor, is tasked with creating an inclusive and engaging commemoration where Connecticut’s residents can appreciate history's relevance and understand the diverse people of the past that all contributed to the American story.
And you can play a significant role in the commemoration! The America 250 | CT Commission wants to hear from you! If you have ideas on what you would like to see from the event, please consider providing your input.
Provide feedback by registering to participate via Zoom during an upcoming community listening session.
The start of the long-awaited revitalization of Silver Lane kicked off yesterday with the groundbreaking of the National Development's Logistics and Technology Park at Rentschler Field in East Hartford. This development is the first phase of a number of projects that will deliver vital economic relief, revitalize these sections of town and bring back some stability and pride in areas long forgotten.
In addition to the groundbreaking, the town has finalized the purchase of the Silver Lane Plaza and, according to Mayor Mike Walsh, the next steps for the Plaza will be:
  • Offering existing businesses located in the plaza three-month leases at the same lease cost as they currently have with month-to-month leases.
  • Demolishing the larger main anchor building towards the rear of the property in very poor condition.
    • The existing businesses in this building – Bare Bones Boxing and Je Mart – will work with the town on relocation plans.
    • The two-story office building to the west and the single-story retail plaza will not be demolished.
  • Issuing a Request for Proposal seeking a developer with a plan for the highest and best use of the Silver Lane Plaza 22-acre site.

Mayor Mike believes demolition is likely to take place by the end of summer and hopes to have the property turned over to a capable developer by the end of the year. If residents have questions, they can call (860) 291-7200.

The Towns of East Hartford and Manchester are once again in the process of adopting their annual budgets for the fiscal year 2023-2024 – and they want to hear from you!
To help residents better understand how East Hartford plans its spending every year and how residents can get involved, the Town has broken down the key steps to the budget planning process into a series of budget workshops.
Following this week's final budget workshop, the Town will hold a public hearing today, and a special meeting on Monday:

You can access details listed on the public meeting calendar here.
For more information, click here.

Manchester process of workshops and meeting will begin today with the following schedule:
  • Wednesday, March 8 at 5:30PM – Budget Workshop #1 (Board of Education)
  • Thursday, March 9 at 5:30PM – Budget Workshop #2 (General Government, Fixed Miscellaneous, Human Services)
  • Wednesday, March 15 at 5:30PM – Budget Workshop #3 (Public Works, Sanitation)
  • Tuesday, March 21 at 5:30PM – Budget Workshop #4 (Police, Fire)
  • Wednesday, March 22 at 5:30PM – Budget Workshop #5 (Board of Education Follow-Up, Leisure Services)
  • Thursday, March 23 at 5:30PM – Budget Workshop #6 (Water & Sewer)
  • Thursday, March 28 at 5:30PM – Budget Workshop #7 (as needed)

Following the workshops, the Town will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, March 14 at 7PM, and a special meeting to adopt the budget on Tuesday, April 11 at 7PM. All meetings will be conducted in-person at the Lincoln Center Hearing Room and can be watched live on Silk City TVFacebook Live, or Cox Channel 16.
For more information, click here.

Are you interested in getting more involved in supporting community members in times of crisis? Manchester’s Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) CERT is looking for more volunteers to join their ongoing efforts of keeping the community safe. 
As a member of CERT, you’ll be trained to assist first responders and provide critical support during emergencies and other town-wide operations such as the annual Road Race.
If you’re interested in making an impact in the community, please contact Don Janelle by email at or by phone at (860) 647-5259.
A public draft of Manchester Next, the Town of Manchester’s Plan of Conservation and Development (POCD), is now available for review. Those who live, work, or visit Manchester are encouraged to submit feedback during the public comment period now through March 15.
Your voice matters – public comment will be utilized to finalize the plan. Review the plan and submit comment by clicking here. If you have any questions or require additional information, call the Planning and Development Department at (860) 647-3044.

We continue to ask that our friends, family, and neighbors consider using all the tools within their reach to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Information for testing, vaccine clinics, and those who are homebound and need assistance are noted below. We must be in this together.
Overall Summary Cumulative
(except for hospital census)
Past 7 days
Positive PCR/NAAT Tests 1,061,227 +1,067
All PCR/NAAT Tests 16,324,225 +20,217
Test Positivity (pos/all PCR/NAAT) -- 5.28%
Patients currently hospitalized with COVID-19 250 -44
COVID-19-Associated Deaths 12,187 +42
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 Percent Positivity Past 7 Days (NAAT) 
East Hartford 18,836 212 244,334 1.93%
Manchester  14,421 204 239,752 7.56%
Children ages 5 through 11 can now receive the updated (bivalent) COVID-19 vaccine. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorized the new boosters for this age group and the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention approved the authorization last week. The updated boosters will be available from pediatricians, hospitals/health networks, DPH mobile clinics, and pharmacies. Residents can visit to locate a provider near them. 

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:

  • Sunday, March 12 
    • Raymond Library, 840 Main St, East Hartford, 2PM-5PM, for ages 6 months and up
  • Tuesday, March 21
    • Raymond Library, 840 Main St, East Hartford, 3PM-7PM, for ages 6 months and up
  • Tuesday, March 23 
    • Raymond Library, 840 Main St, East Hartford, 3PM-7PM, for ages 6 months and up
  • Tuesday, March 28
    • Raymond Library, 840 Main St, East Hartford, 3PM-7PM, for ages 6 months and up

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.

Flu season is upon us and a yearly flu vaccine can help protect against serious illness. After getting the vaccine, it will take about two weeks for your body to develop the antibodies that can protect you from the flu. To get a flu shot, check with your healthcare provider or call your local health department. You can also visit to find a location near you that is administering flu shots. For more information, please click here.

For additional state and local resources, click the links below:
Looking for help this tax season? The AARP Tax Aide Program will be available to residents now through Friday, April 15 at the East Hartford Senior Center. Appointments can be made during Senior Center hours of operation, 8:30AM-4:30PM Monday through Friday. Call (860) 291-7460 to set up an appointment.
Assistance will also be available for elderly, persons with disabilities, and veterans needing guidance on available exemption programs. Representatives from the East Hartford Assessor's Office will be at the East Hartford Senior Center every Wednesday, 9AM-3:30PM to accommodate walk-ins and appointments for the senior, totally disabled and veteran program exemptions.
Please bring proof of income to include a filed 2022 tax return, if required to file, and the 1099 form from Social Security. For details regarding eligibility and documentation requirements, please visit the Assessor Exemption Programs webpage. And for more information on the available assistance program, click here.
In Manchester, AARP volunteers will be available will be available at the Senior Center by appointment only now through Thursday, April 14. Appointments available now through April 14 on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, 1PM-3PM. Call (860) 647-6024 to set-up a time.
For more information on available resources, East Hartford residents can click here and East Hartford residents can click here.

On Thursday, March 30, at 11AM, the Department of Veterans Affairs will host a Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Ceremony at the Gold Star Families Memorial Auditorium in Rocky Hill. I hope you will be able to join the ceremony honoring the service and sacrifice of our Vietnam Veterans.

Please click the graphic above to RSVP.

Nearly two months after being signed into law, the federal Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics (PACT) Act has profoundly impacted veterans' access to health care and benefits. Since the PACT Act was signed in August, veterans have filed more than 200,000 total claims. The law represents the most significant health care and benefits expansion for veterans exposed to toxins in more than 30 years.

The law extends eligibility for VA health care for veterans with toxic exposures and veterans of the Vietnam, Gulf War, and post-9/11 eras. It adds more than 20 new presumptive conditions for burn pits and other toxic exposures, and requires the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to provide a toxic exposure assessment to every veteran enrolled in VA health care. 

If you're a veteran or survivor, you can file claims now to apply for benefits under the PACT Act. You can learn more here.


Join East Hartford Public Library to make a personalized necklace or charm for yourself or a loved one on Wednesday, March 8, 5:30PM-7:30PM in the Makerspace. Best suited for ages 8 and up – register by clicking here.

Patrons of all ages are invited to construct puppets under the tutelage of librarian/puppeteer Rolande Duprey at East Hartford Public Library! Stop by the library to participate every other Friday from 2PM-4:40PM in the Makerspace – next date is March 17. Click here for more information.

Registration is open now for the East Hartford Parks and Recreation Department’s Splashing for Eggs events on Friday, March 31 from 5:30PM-8PM at the Middle School Pool! Participants will be assigned a time slot to ‘hop’ into the pool to collect some floating eggs. Reserve a time slot by clicking here – space is limited.

Manchester Art Association is sponsoring a color theory workshop with renowned artist Sandra Wakeen on Wednesday, March 8 from 10AM-3PM at Manchester Church of Christ. This workshop approaches color in an intuitive and hands-on way exploring the different groups of color that make up the twelve segments of the color wheel. To register, click here.

Support Our Soldiers-Connecticut will be holding an Easter/Spring collection event to support our overseas Troops on Sunday, March 12 from 11AM-1PM at the Hillstown Grange Hall.   Donations of snacks, sweets (especially “Peeps”), drawings and greetings cards are needed and may be dropped off that day by 11:30 or by special arrangement. Click here for more information.

Learn the basics of Blackletter Calligraphy at Whiton Memorial Library on Wednesday, March 15 at 6PM. This program is for adults only age 18 and up. Space is limited and registration is required, so call the library at (860) 645-0821 to reserve your spot.

East Hartford Parks and Recreation Department’s Annual Egg Hunt at McAuliffe Park is on Saturday, March 25 at 12PM. There will be thousands of pieces of chocolates and stuffed plastic eggs for children ages 10 and younger (and their accompanying parent/guardian).
This is a free event for East Hartford residents. Each child should bring their own bag or basket to collect eggs and candy. Please dress appropriately for the weather. For more information, click here.
Registration is open now for OAKC Together We Tee! This program is offered to local Black and Brown youth of all genders ages 9-12 and their parent/guardian to introduce kids to the game of golf. The Manchester Country club will be providing all participants with lessons by golf professionals, fee waivers, and equipment. The program is limited to 10 participants, so register today by clicking here.
If you have questions or would like additional information, call Senior Recreation Specialist Calvin Harris at (860) 647-3088 or Recreation Supervisor Taylor McBride at (860) 647-6039.

East Hartford Parks and Recreation is offering an American Red Cross Babysitter Training Course on Saturday, March 11 from 9AM-4PM for youth ages 11-15 who are current or future babysitters. The class will cover how to manage real-life situations, diapering, feeding and professionalism, but will NOT include CPR.
Babysitters will receive a Babysitting Certificate that includes Standard First Aid. Open to both residents and non-residents – registration is required at and is open now! Sign up by clicking here.
Calling the young people in our community – it's not too early to be thinking about summer employment or learning opportunities! Gain valuable work experience and get paid this summer by signing up for the Summer Youth Employment and Learning Program (SYELP).
SYELP connects youth between the ages of 14 and 24 with career exploration opportunities and paid work experience each summer. Applications are open now! Sign up by clicking here.
Do you have a business card? How about a website? Are you looking for help? At Drop-in Digital Navigation hours, the East Hartford Public Library will work with small business owners to develop the technology skills you need to make your business technology work as hard as you do. Business owners at every stage of development are encouraged to attend. Drop-in hours will be offered on Fridays from 10:30AM-12:30PM (March 3, 10, 24, & 31; April 14 & 27; and May 5, 12, &26). For more information, click here.
Reminder that the application deadline is quickly approaching to participate in the Access Health CT Broker Academy Program! The Broker Academy provides free training for selected students to become licensed brokers and covers the cost of their licensing exam. You can learn more by visiting the Broker Academy's website or by attending an upcoming virtual informational session:

Tuesday, March 21 at 6PM – register here

The deadline to apply is Friday, March 31. If you have questions or require additional information, click here or email

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.

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 this month's East Hartford Pride Newsletter


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.