The Observer asked the candidates three questions. They were given the option of answering one to three of them as long as their total word count did not exceed a number assigned by paper.
The questions were:
A: What should the General Assembly do over the next two years to help the state economy?
B: There has been a lot of finger-pointing this election at the president and our departing governor. Why are either figure relevant to the problems of Connecticut?
C: Other than the economy what are the top issues the General Assembly must address in the next two years. Why?
77th House District
A: To help the state’s economy the General Assembly needs to take a closer look at the Department of Labor and other self -governing state departments that make Connecticut unfriendly to businesses. Taxes are part of the problem but the over- regulation and inability to adapt to accommodate expanding industries play a larger role.
Many legislators fail to make business friendly bills a priority. The lack of actual job experience and small business ownership among legislators contributes to this attitude. For example, a bill to assist local breweries like Firefly died because big liquor distributors were scared it would affect the hundreds of millions of dollars they make. Another bill that that would have allowed a state agency to suspend civil penalties against a business if it was a first violation, unintentional and didn’t cause bodily injury also failed for the second time.
Instead the legislature passed bills to study the overcrowding of satellites on roofs in addition to bills regulating splashpads and bingo. This is not how we should be spending our time and taxpayer money.
B: Governor Malloy is relevant to the problems of Connecticut because the decisions taken by him and supported by the Democrats in the General Assembly have worsened or caused many of the budget and economic problems of Connecticut. And those who forget history are doomed to repeat it.
Borrowing money to be paid back with interest to pay for a $10 million study on tolls, bailing out Hartford, locking us into a 10-year contract with state employees, imposing the largest two tax increases in Connecticut history, driving businesses out of Connecticut – all these decisions by Governor Malloy and his supporters will haunt the taxpayers of Bristol and Connecticut for years to come.
Governor Malloy is relevant because he is a reminder of the harm that electing the wrong person can do will last long after they are out of office.
C: The General Assembly needs to focus more on how we are going to care for our elderly population. Transportation, prescription/healthcare coverage and housing are at the top the list of current problems facing our seniors and will only grow if we don’t plan and budget ahead.
In 2018, the Connecticut General Assembly did pass legislation to study these issues and determine how we can better prepare; however, the instability of our economy’s future is not going to allow us to address the issues we most certainly will face. Instead of voting on topics that may get some legislators reelected, why don’t we vote on bills that will ensure the care of our seniors?
We need to make sure that programs like the Medicare Savings Program for seniors are funded instead of paying $10 million for a toll study, $9 million for new judges, and $754 million to bail out Hartford over the next 20 years.