Weekly Update - February 9

February 9, 2024


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Dear Neighbor,

In this email you'll find updates on district resources and news. Please click the links below to read the section that corresponds with the highlighted headline.

A NOTE: If you're having trouble clicking through the following links, open this email in a browser, use a computer or scroll through this email to the relevant section. 

The topics covered are as follows

Legislative Updates
Opening Day!

The 2024 Legislative Session is underway. I am looking forward to working with my colleagues on issues facing our state, including housing, access to quality childcare, and many others. I want to thank the mayors of East Hartford and Manchester, Connor Martin and Jay Moran, respectively, for taking the time out of their busy schedules to visit and participate in opening day. As always, please contact my office if you have any questions or concerns.

2024 Legislative Survey


As the 2024 legislative session begins, I would like to hear from you! Connecticut faces many challenges, including the economy, inflation, rising cost of living and access to quality healthcare. I’d like to know your views on all the various issues facing our state. I would like to hear your opinion on a variety of topics so I can better represent you and our community in Hartford. I hope you will take a few minutes to complete this survey.

2024 Legislative Survey

I would like your feedback as we work this legislative session on the governor's proposed budget adjustments. Please follow the link below to read the adjustments and send any questions, comments or suggestions to Jason.Rojas@cga.ct.gov.


Virtual Office Hours

I always look forward to the opportunity to meet with residents face-to-face to talk about your concerns and ideas – it’s what helps me to best represent our community. I’ll be hosting Virtual Office Hours. If you’d like to participate, sign up for a time slot by clicking on the link below.

Virtual Office Hours

Please call the office with any questions at (860) 240-8790 or email us at: Awet.Tsegai@cga.ct.gov

Informational Meeting with DOT

Meeting Notice

Today In CT History

Today in 1953, future Congressman Gary A. Franks was born in Waterbury, the youngest of six children in a family of limited means. His parents put a high value on education, and all six of their children went to college, and three obtained doctoral degrees. Gary was an All State high school basketball player and went on to play for Yale University, from which he graduated in 1975. During the next decade, Franks worked as a labor relations executive for three Fortune 500 companies, before starting his own real estate firm in Waterbury. Encouraged by his friend John Rowland, Franks entered politics in an effort to bring “new blood” to the Waterbury Republican Party.

Future Congressman Gary Franks as Yale basketball player
Franks played basketball for Yale University (Yale Media Guide)

In 1990, when Rowland vacated his congressional seat to run for governor, Franks successfully sought the nomination for his seat as a black Republican conservative, beating out six other candidates. In a campaign that drew national attention, Franks, aided by campaign appearances from President and First Lady George and Barbara Bush, was able to defeat well-known Democrat Toby Moffett in a district where Democrats outnumbered Republicans two to one.

Franks was the first African American elected to Congress from Connecticut and the first black Republican elected to Congress in 60 years. A member of the Armed Services committee, Franks secured large numbers of defense contracts for the state. He also wrote the bill that led to the establishment of Weir Farm as Connecticut’s first National Park site.

Xiomaro, Photograph. “Young Painting 2,” (Weir Farm N.P.S.)

Franks authored the bill making the Weir Farm arts colony Connecticut’s only National Park. Franks helped craft the GOP’s 1995 welfare reform package, and he upset many in the African American community because of his strong opposition to affirmative action and his support for the nomination of Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court.

Franks’s strong and independent views put him at odds not only with members of the Black Congressional Caucus, but sometimes with his own party leadership. Nevertheless, he served three terms, until his defeat in 1996 by Democrat James Maloney. Two years later, after a failed attempt to unseat Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd, Franks retired from politics.

Researched and written by Jacob Wieloch

Further Reading

Gary A. Franks,” US House of Representatives archives

Jacqueline Trescott, “Rep. Gary Franks: Unexpected Republican,” Washington Post archives

Town Of East Hartford

 Town Meetings
Regular Town Council Meeting

February 20th, 2024, at 7:30 PM

Community Cultural Center Auditorium (50 Chapman Place)

+1929-235-8441; ID: 565393232#    
Board of Education Meeting

February 12th , 2024 7pm

857 Forbes Street


Town Resources



Town Newsletters

Pulse of East Hartford     

East Hartford Public Schools

East Hartford Works

Town Of Manchester

Town Meetings

Regular Board of Directors Meeting

February 6th, 2024, 7:00 PM

Lincoln Center Hearing Room (494 Main Street)

Board of Directors

Regular Meeting

February 12th, 2024, 7:00 pm

 Lincoln Center Hearing Room (494 Main Street)



Open to the public--bring a sturdy grocery bag! This program is made possible by Foodshare and Winn Residential - Resident Service Program. For more information call 860-646-1280.


Squire Village, 48 Spencer Street, 06040 (1st parking lot off Imperial Drive #78) 

  • February 13th 9am-9:30am
  • February 27th 9am-9:30am

 Faith Tabernacle – Manchester 110 Utopia Rd, Manchester, CT 06042

  • February 15th, 1:00pm – 1:30pm (Cancelled)
  • February 29th, 1:00pm – 1:30pm 

New River Community Church -314 Woodbridge St, Manchester, CT 06042

  • February 21st  12pm-12:30pm


Get mobile pantry updates in your area by texting the word Foodshare to 85511.

Manchester Mobile Foodshare

East Hartford

The Connecticut Foodshare truck will be in the parking lot to distribute the food. Please bring your bags and be prepared to possibly wait in line.


Hockanum Park- 75 Hamilton Park

  • February 19th, 9:00am – 9:30am (Cancelled)  

Mayberry Village –St. Isaac Jogues Church Parking Lot (41 Home Terrace East Hartford)

  • February 19th - 12: 30pm – 1:15 pm

Summerfield Townhouse (66 Plain Drive East Hartford, CT)

  • February 14th, 1:15pm – 2:00pm
  • February 28th, 1:30pm – 2:00pm

Veterans Terrace -102 Columbus St, East Hartford, CT 06108

  • February 12th, 1:30pm – 2:00pm (Cancelled)
  • February 26th, 1:30pm – 2:00pm

Get mobile pantry updates in your area by texting the word Foodshare to 85511.

East Hartford Mobile Foodshare

Manchester Citizen Police Academy

It is TIME! Join the Manchester Police Department for their 32nd Session of the Citizen Police Academy Wednesday nights beginning March 6 - May 15 from 6pm - 9pm. This session will bring an in-depth review of the Manchester Police Department, their fundamentals, various specialty units, training, skills and considerations for working in partnership with the community.

Interested in taking part in this journey? Email
HearnC@ManchesterCT.gov for registration requirements.

Downtown Streetscape Details

The Town of Manchester is excited to have received a $7.5 million Community Investment Fund grant to fund long-sought safety and streetscape improvements to Downtown. The project is intended to do what the Manchester community has asked us to do for many years: Invest in Downtown to make it an even better destination for everyone:  residents; business and property owners, customers, employees and visitors.

Please visit the project web page and be on the lookout for a series of open houses. Discussion in the community has already begun, which is great! 

Here are some details for those who care about Downtown and are interested in the project:   


•    Downtown currently rates as a high crash area with numerous accidents and sadly, fatalities. 

•    Complete Streets projects typically result in increased business activity and private investment.

•    A “Road diet” is designed to make vehicular traffic through Downtown: Slower, Smoother and Safer to benefit ALL.

•    Conceptual plans show NO NET DECREASE in the number of on-street parking spaces and ADDITIONAL off-street public parking spaces.

•    The Town is actively working with representatives of the Manchester Road Race to ensure these improvements will enhance and not negatively impact, the race and other important Downtown events.

•    A mix of diagonal, parallel and off-street public spaces will remain.

Gary Anderson, Director of Manchester Planning & Economic Development

ganderson@manchesterct.gov | 860- 647-3044

The Afro-Semitic Experience will perform at Unitarian Universalist Society East, 153 Vernon St. West, Manchester CT, in celebration of Black History Month at 2 pm Feb. 11. Suggested donation is $15.


For details, email info@uuse.org or call 860-646-5151.

FY25 Budget Workshops & Meetings

The following is the schedule of FY25 Budget Workshops. Meetings will be conducted in person with remote access optional via Zoom.

View the Full Schedule of FY25 Budget Workshops & Meetings by
 clicking here(DOC, 32KB) . 

Please note that workshops will be held in the Lincoln Center Hearing Room at 5:30 p.m.

NOTEWorkshop #2 on March 12 is scheduled for 5:00 instead of 5:30 and is followed by the Public Hearing at 7pm, same location.

The Budget Adoption is scheduled for Tuesday, April 9, 2024 at 7pm in the Lincoln Center Hearing Room.



  • Tuesday, March 05, 2024 | 07:30 AM - 08:30 AM
  • Wednesday, March 06, 2024 | 05:30 PM - 06:30 PM
  • Tuesday, March 12, 2024 | 05:00 PM - 06:00 PM
  • Thursday, March 14, 2024 | 05:30 PM - 06:30 PM
  • Tuesday, March 19, 2024 | 05:30 PM - 06:30 PM
  • Wednesday, March 20, 2024 | 05:30 PM - 6:30 PM
  • Thursday, March 21, 2024 | 5:30 PM - 6:30PM
  • Thursday, April 4, 2024 | 5:30PM - 6:30PM

The Department of Leisure, Family, and Recreation Winter/Spring Program and Event Guide is here!

Event Guide
Town Of Manchester
Town Resources
Manchester Public Schools - One Manchester
Manchester Matters

East Hartford FY2024-25 Budget Workshop Schedule

The East Hartford Town Council will be holding Budget Workshops for the FY2024-25 Town Budget. If you would like to attend the meeting, click on the link below to attend in person or virtually. 

Budget Workshops
Town of East Hartford Offices Closed on February 12

in Observance of Lincoln’s Birthday

Trash and Recycling Pickup Remain on Schedule

All town offices, including the East Hartford Transfer Station will be closed Monday, February 12, 2024, in observance of Abraham Lincoln's Birthday

All town offices will reopen on Tuesday, February 13, 2024, for regularly scheduled hours of operation.

Curbside trash pickup and recycling will run on schedule without delays.

The normal transfer station schedule is as follows: 

Monday, Tuesday and Friday from 7:15 a.m. to Noon and 12:30 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. (holidays excluded), and the first and third Saturdays of the month from 8:00 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. (holidays excluded). The transfer station is closed on Wednesday and Thursdays.

For information regarding curbside waste collection, please call All American Waste at 860-289-7850 from 7 am – 5 pm or visit All American Waste | Waste Disposal & Recycling | Dumpster Rentals (aawllc.com).

For any information regarding recycling collection, please continue to call Trash Away at 860-225-1206.

To contact the East Hartford Public Works, please call 860-291-7374.

Parks and Recreation Department Accepting

Applications for Seasonal Employment

The East Hartford Parks and Recreation is now accepting applications for Summer 2024 employment opportunities.  Available positions include seasonal lifeguards and camp counselors.  The Parks and Recreation Department estimates a need to hire 20-30 new employees this year to work at various camp sites, pools, parks and facilities throughout town. 

Lifeguards must be at least 15 years old and have current certification in American Red Cross Lifeguarding OR be able to successfully complete a course prior to the start of the summer season.  Lifeguards are assigned to one of the town’s outdoor or indoor pools, and typically work a varied schedule including nights and weekends.  The Parks and Recreation Department will be offering American Red Cross Lifeguarding certification courses this spring, and course dates will be announced when they are finalized. 

Camp Counselors must be at least 16 years old and are responsible for planning and leading activities and experiences for children in a group setting, as well as overseeing the general safety and development of the children under their supervision.  Camp counselors should have leadership skills and be available to work the entire summer season, Monday through Friday, from mid-June to mid-August.  Prior experience working with children is highly preferred, and CPR and/or First Aid certification is recommended, but not required.

Working for East Hartford Parks and Recreation is a fun, rewarding experience!  Those interested in applying for seasonal positions are encouraged to do so as early as possible and employment applications are available on our website at:


For more information on our employment opportunities, please contact the Parks and Recreation Department at 860-291-7160. 

Join the Local Prevention Council- Youth Advisory Board

Youth & Social Services is recruiting East Hartford residents to serve as members on the Local Prevention Council (LPC). The East Hartford LPC works together to plan and implement substance use and misuse prevention programs for East Hartford youth. We are looking for members of all backgrounds, including parents, youth, educators, youth serving organizations, substance misuse organizations, local government, law enforcement, health care, media, business, faith-based organizations, civic and volunteer groups, and persons with lived experience.

East Hartford Public Library

The East Hartford Public Library will be hosting a Black History Month film series begins on Thursday, February 1, at 6:00 PM with TILL (2022). In this emotional true story, Mamie Till-Mobley relentlessly pursues justice for her 14-year-old son who, in 1955, was lynched while in Mississippi.

Register for a reminder:


For more upcoming programs, visit our website: http://www.easthartfordct.gov/library

Free-Play Basketball and Adult Open Gym

East Hartford Parks and Recreation is offering two fun programs: Open Gym for East Hartford residents in Grades 7 through 12 and Adult Drop-In Basketball.


For Middle and High School students in grades 7 – 12

East Hartford residents or students attending East Hartford Middle or High School can participate in Basketball Open Gym on Mondays and Fridays. The program runs through Friday, March 8th from 6:30 – 8:45pm at East Hartford Middle School.  Grade 7 and 8 will be in the Lower Gym and Grades 9 – 12 will be in the Upper Gym.  The program is FREE, but all participants must be registered at www.ehparks.org and have a Town ID or EHHS/EHMS ID at the program. There will be no program if there is no school or school is let out early due to inclement weather.


For adults ages 18 & up

East Hartford Parks and Recreation is offering Adult Open Basketball at Goodwin Elementary School. All participants must complete a registration form the first evening they attend or register at www.ehparks.org for a season membership. The program is Monday and Thursday nights and will run through Thursday, March 7th. Residents can purchase a season pass for $20 or $2 an evening.  Non-residents can purchase a Season Pass for $40 or $4 an evening.  The program time is 6:30 to 9:30pm.  Basketball sneakers are mandatory.  There will be no program if there is no school or school is let out early due to inclement weather.

For more information, please call the Parks and Recreation office at 860-291-7160.

Town Of East Hartford
Town Resources
Pulse of East Hartford Newsletter
East Hartford Public School News
East Hartford Works

My office is always open if you or your family are in need of assistance. Please do not hesitate to contact me by email at Jason.Rojas@cga.ct.gov or by phone at 860-240-8541.


Jason Rojas


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