This year’s legislative session has concluded and with it the passage of new legislation that will shape our state for years to come. The headline from the session is the passage of a bipartisan budget that funds transportation infrastructure, restores cuts to education and restores funding for the Medicare Savings Plan – all without raising taxes.
We worked on policies that support small businesses, workforce development and making our state a place where we can proudly raise our families. I am committed to fighting for you to build a bright future for Connecticut and our Bridgeport community.
I hope you find the enclosed information helpful. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to my office if I can be of service to you or your family. It is my pleasure and honor to serve as your state representative.
Components of the Bipartisan Budget Agreement that I Supported Include:
- No income, sales or other state tax increases
- Increasing state aid for education over 2018 levels
- Restoring funding to the Medicare Savings Program that helps low-income elderly individuals and the disabled pay for the cost of medicine and health care premiums
- Restoring funding to Husky A, juvenile justice programs, developmental services, and partial funding to the Energy Efficiency Fund
- Maintaining the “Rainy Day” Fund reserves at the highest level in over
- a decade
- Reinstating the Renters Rebate program that helps so many people on fixed incomes
Allocating Funds for Hurricane Relief in Puerto Rico
$4.4 million was included in the budget for Puerto Rican residents who were driven from their homes and came to Connecticut after Hurricane Maria last year. This money will be used for housing services and education. I am glad that Bridgeport has welcomed our new residents, and that the state is working to help them.
Motivating companies and making Connecticut more business friendly to create jobs and improve our economy is a top priority. We assisted 15 companies to relocate and create new jobs in the state, and in return 3,894 jobs are expected to be created and 15,006 jobs retained. When applicants apply for those jobs (or any other one) a new law now prohibits employers from asking about your salary in previous jobs which is a major contributor to perpetuating low-paying salaries and the gender pay gap.
A bill that would expand casino gaming and open up a competitive bidding process passed in the House, but it died in the Senate. I believe this measure is an investment so that urban cores can continue to be the economic drivers that help us thrive. Bridgeport would be a top choice for a new casino, creating thousands of good paying jobs for our residents, if this measure passed. I will continue to fight for the passage of this bill.
Minority Teacher Recruitment
The State Dept. of Education (SDE) will work to develop new alternative routes to certification for paraprofessionals, charter school teachers and veterans. SDE will also work with vendors to allow certain teachers to retake their licensure test for free if they do not successfully pass the first time.