Jonathan Steinberg was first elected to serve as State Representative in the 136th Assembly District of Westport in 2010 and is now serving his fifth term. The district includes most of Westport.
He serves as House Chair of the Legislature's Public Health Committee. Jonathan also serves on the Energy & Technology, and Transportation Committees.
He is a member of the Advanced Manufacturing, Tourism, Long Island Sound, and Intellectual Disabilities Caucuses and is now Co-Chair of the Bioscience Caucus.
Years of Public Service to Westport
Jonathan was first elected to Westport's Representative Town Meeting, the town's legislative body, in 2003. During his seven-year tenure, he was elected unanimously as Deputy Moderator three times and, at various times, chaired four RTM committees: Health & Human Services, Information Technology, Library Museum & the Arts, and the ad hoc Communications Committee.
In addition to his RTM roles, Jonathan Steinberg has also been more broadly involved in town affairs. He served on a number of town groups appointed by Westport's First Selectman: the Town Plan Implementation Committee and its Downtown Plan Subcommittee (which he chaired), the Wastewater Management Committee and its Septic System Education Taskforce (which he co-chaired), as well as the Celebrate Westport Committee and the Longshore 50th Anniversary Committee.
Other Volunteer Interests
Jonathan is co-founder of the Westport Cinema Initiative, dedicated to bringing a movie theater back to Westport. He has been a supporter of the Wakeman Town Farm and is an active member of Westport's League of Women Voters. Jonathan is also a former board member of the Suzuki Music School of Westport.
A marketing executive for over 25 years, working primarily in New York City, Jonathan was employed by several Fortune 100 companies such as, Bristol-Myers Squibb, American Home Products/Wyeth, and Revlon, in product marketing and new product development roles. Jonathan also worked for several healthcare organizations such as Mount Sinai Medical Center and The Jewish Home Lifecare System, where he was Senior Vice President for Marketing and Communications.
Jonathan is a product of Westport's excellent public schools; he is a graduate of Hillspoint Elementary, Coleytown Junior High and Staples High School (Class of 1974). Jonathan graduated from Yale University with a B.A. in Psychology, and N.Y.U.'s Stern School of Business with an M.B.A. in Marketing with Honors. He is also certified to teach History/Social Studies in Connecticut public schools as a graduate of the Department of Higher Education's Alternate Route to Certification (ARC) Program.
Jonathan returned to Westport in 1996 with his wife, Nancy, to raise their family in his hometown. They have three daughters, all products of Westport schools. Rachel graduated summa cum laude from the College of William & Mary and was selected to join the school's Phi Beta Kappa chapter, Margot graduated magna cum laude from Muhlenberg College and was also selected to join Phi Beta Kappa, and Charlotte attends Ithaca College.
Jonathan's top priorities have been fundamental budget reform, transportation infrastructure investment, and progressive energy policy.
- Jonathan spearheaded statutory language to create the Pension Liability Commission, tasked with addressing the states burgeoning state worker and teacher unfunded pension liabilities. Subsequently, the Speaker appointed Steinberg to serve as Chair of the new commission. He recently served on the Statutory Spending Cap Commission, charged with establishing definitions of state expenditures subject to the spending cap.
- Steinberg leads the House Moderates Caucus, which has fought to roll back some of the more dubious proposals in recent budgets. Specifically, he fought the Governor's attempt to saddle wealthier communities with the State's obligation to pay the unfunded teacher pension liability, killing a budget bill which included such payments.
- Representative Steinberg has been at the forefront in efforts to improve Metro North and the shoreline transportation corridor in general. As former House Chair of the Finance Committee's Transportation Bonding Subcommittee and a member of the Transportation Committee, Jonathan secured billions of dollars of capital investment to address deteriorating bridges, highways and rail lines, and supports the sequestering of the State's Special Transportation Fund so as to be used exclusively for transportation infrastructure investment (the "Transportation Lockbox".) Jonathan has also been a consistent advocate on behalf of Westport's Transit District and a leader in pursuing mass transit alternatives.
- As House Chair of the Public Health Committee, Steinberg continues to vigorously pursue remedies to the opioid epidemic, including education, prescribing, treatment and recovery support. He is currently working to address the problems of nicotine addiction in young people, primarily brought on by vaping. At the Speaker's instigation, Steinberg worked to restore the rapport with the state's hospitals, leading to a deal on the hospital tax which significantly reduced the budget deficit. Steinberg has also pledged to ameliorate rapidly rising prescription drug prices through initiatives which promote industry transparency and fairness to the consumer.
- Jonathan remains a thought leader on energy issues, advocating for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects across the state. He has been an ardent supporter of efforts to expand community energy projects such as shared solar, so that those homeowners and businesses that can't easily install solar on their roofs can still participate in building the state's renewable, distributed-energy future. He has supported Connecticut industries such as hydrogen fuel cell manufacturers and university research efforts which will hopefully lead to cutting-edge solutions to energy storage, grid resiliency and interactivity, and greater energy efficiency.
- Representative Steinberg was a leader in the effort to enact legislation protecting the health and safety of Connecticut citizens by addressing the threats posed by fracking waste. He helped craft the law which imposed a moratorium on the processing, storage or disposal of hydraulic fracturing waste from other state until the Department of Energy & Environmental Protection promulgates effective regulations. He is now leading the fight to establish an outright ban on fracking waste.
- As a member of the legislature's Advanced Manufacturing Caucus and Bioscience Caucus, Jonathan has urged colleagues to support legislation that will enable Connecticut-based manufacturers to compete in the emerging fields of biotechnology, genomic research and energy innovation, while remaining leaders in precision manufacturing. He has worked collaboratively with the Department of Economic and Community Development to promote training programs such as STEP UP and create job path initiatives which will help industry create stable, well-paying jobs for our workers.
- Steinberg continues to spearhead efforts to address the graying of Connecticut's population. He has advocated on behalf of aging legislation intended to facilitate "Aging in Place," as well as investments in transportation and housing alternatives to meet the needs of today's – and tomorrow's – seniors. He has pushed for bills which will fund nutrition programs for seniors, support the burgeoning Alzheimer's population memory care needs, and invest in tele-monitoring and other smart technologies.