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“A Bad Bet” – Sen. Hwang on Gov. Malloy Signing CT Casino Expansion Bill

State Sen. Tony Hwang, R-Fairfield, issued the following statement after the governor signed the casino expansion bill into law:

“When the governor signed the casino expansion bill today, he should have said, ‘See you in court,’ because that’s where this issue will be for years and years.  

“Has Connecticut now violated the Equal Protection and Commerce clauses of the Constitution by refusing to consider other groups for the state’s first commercial gaming license?

“State taxpayers will now be asked to pay for those significant legal bills as courts determine that answer.

“Economically, it makes little sense to expand casino gambling when the Northeast faces a growing casino glut.  

“Socially, the picture is even bleaker.   It is well-documented that casinos spread gambling addiction, debt, bankruptcies, broken families, and crime.

“It’s a bad bet all around.

“Make no mistake: A casino somewhere in Fairfield County could one day be our reality.

“This is a David vs. Goliath fight.  The forces that want expanded gambling are extremely powerful, but I am proud to say that the following groups have joined me in the fight:

Connecticut Catholic Conference

Connecticut Conference of the United Church of Christ

Episcopal Church in Connecticut

Connecticut League of Women Voters

Family Institute of Connecticut

New England Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church of America

Connecticut Association for Human Services

Council of Churches of Greater Bridgeport

Advocacy Unlimited, Inc.

Farmington Valley American Muslim Center

Resident Bishop New England Conference of the United Methodist Church

American Baptist Churches of Connecticut

“I will continue to work with anyone who does not want to see more people’s lives ruined by expanded Connecticut gambling.  

“Visit www.nomorecasinosinct.org to learn how you can help us.”

CROPHwang 2017-06-14 Insurance Rate Hike Testimony 15 of 17

Health insurer Anthem is requesting an average increase of 33.8 % for policies marketed both on and off the state exchange, Access Health CT.

Yes, 33.8 %.

Health insurer ConnectiCare has requested an average increase of 17.5 % for policies sold exclusively on the exchange.

Yes, 17.5 %.

I have spoken out repeatedly against these outrageous, unaffordable rate hikes, and so can you…this week.

Public comments on the rate hike proposals are being accepted through Friday.

  • Send me your comments at Tony.Hwang@cga.ct.gov .  Include your name and town.
  • Comments can be as brief as you like.  (Example:  “NO to rate hikes!”)
  • I will get them to the State Department of Insurance by close of business Friday.

Please spread the word to other concerned ratepayers!

Thank you.

Weston Post Session[6]

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Sen. Tony Hwang (at far left) participates in the discussion during a June 19 traffic safety and community update held at Sacred Heart University’s Martire Business and Communications building.  The informational forum, hosted by Sen. Hwang and the Stratfield Village Association, brought together state and local officials to discuss issues such as speeding and distracted driving and what can be done to make Route 59/Stratfield Road safer.  Those who could not attend may contact and share their concerns with Sen. Hwang at 800-842-1421 and at Tony.Hwang@cga.ct.gov . Sen. Hwang represents Easton, Fairfield, Newtown, Weston and Westport.  On the web: www.SenatorHwang.com .

Attached photo, left to right:  Sen. Hwang, Bill Hurley of the CT Dept. of Transportation, Fred Kulakowski of the CT Dept. of Transportation, William Britnell of the CT Dept. of Transportation.

 

New Direction[2]
Sign the petition to support a new direction for Connecticut!

It’s clear that we need to change the direction our state is headed.

Connecticut is a great state. But we are facing a financial crisis, businesses and people are leaving, and people are struggling.

We have heard your concerns. Now, we are taking a stand.

The Connecticut Senate Republicans have a bold plan to change the direction of our state and restore confidence in Connecticut so that we can attract businesses and grow jobs.

This is about a new vision. This is about protecting our state for future generations.

This is about survival.

 Our revised no-new-tax state budget makes the tough choices necessary to cut spending, reduce the size of government, and make necessary changes to state employee benefits – all while protecting core services.

 Here’s how you can help. Stand up with us. Sign the petition to urge state leaders to move our state in a new direction.

Click to learn more

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In preparation for the Fourth of July holiday weekend, Sen. Tony Hwang and area officials are raising public awareness about drunken driving prevention.

Hwang, along with representatives from Uber and the Fairfield Police Department, will participate in a press conference with MADD CT at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 29 at Luigi’s Restaurant, 170 Post Road, Fairfield.

The press conference will review MADD’s new data on the Ignition Interlock Device and discuss smart decisions area residents can make to prevent senseless tragedies on Connecticut’s roadways.

“Drunken driving tragedies can be prevented,” Sen. Hwang said. “We are urging folks to make responsible decisions and avoid drinking and driving while celebrating.”

*Sen. Hwang represents Easton, Fairfield, Newtown, Weston and Westport. He can be reached at 800-842-1421 and at Tony.Hwang@cga.ct.gov .  On the web: www.SenatorHwang.com .

Attached photo:

The Connecticut chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) on Nov. 17 presented Sen. Tony Hwang (at podium) with its “2016 Legislator of the Year” award for his work in the area of public safety.

 

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The CT Senate Republicans have put forth a detailed, thoughtful, vetted, balanced, line-by-line update to the Confident Connecticut Republican state budget proposal for fiscal years 2018 and 2019.

Our proposal continues to provide funding for vital services to our most vulnerable residents and increase funding for education to towns and cities across the state.

We protect hospitals from being hit with more taxes.

We protect taxpayers from being overburdened by new taxes or policies that would result in significant increases to property taxes.

Read the CT Senate Republicans’ plan budget summary and line by line budget attached.

Compare the CT Senate Republicans’ plan…

Contact me with any questions you may have at Tony.Hwang@cga.ct.gov .

Please sign our CT Senate Republican petition to support a new direction for Connecticut athttp://ctsenaterepublicans.com/2017/06/51405/#.WUv8LYKovL8 .

Thank you!

The project involves milling bridge decks, repairs to exposed bridge decks and paving a section of I-95 between the New England Avenue overpass  (near Exit 24) and the Wordin Avenue overpass (near Exit 26) for a total distance of 2.3 miles. The contractor will then reverse direction proceeding southbound on Interstate 95 all within this construction season.

There will be milling and paving of on-ramps and off-ramps and repair of existing concrete bridge decks. Detour routes will be provided should ramps need to be closed for construction activities.

LANE CLOSURE INFO:

The following ramps are scheduled to be closed:

Week of 6/19/2017 –

  •  I-95 NB On-Ramp 25 will be detoured to NB 26 On-Ramp
  •  I-95 NB Off-Ramp 25 will be detoured to SB 25 Off-Ramp
  •  I-95 NB On-Ramp 26 will be detoured to NB 25 On-Ramp
  •  I-95 NB Off-Ramp 26 will be detoured to SB 26 Off-Ramp
  •  I-95 SB Off-Ramp 25 will be detoured to SB 24 Off-Ramp
  •  I-95 SB On-Ramp 25 will be detoured to SB 24 On-Ramp
  •  I-95 SB Off-Ramp 26 will be detoured to SB 25 Off-Ramp
  •  I-95 SB On-Ramp 26 will be detoured to SB 27 On-Ramp

Week of 6/26/2017 –

  •  I-95 SB Off-Ramp 25 will be detoured to SB 24 Off-Ramp
  •  I-95 SB On-Ramp 25 will be detoured to SB 24 On-Ramp
  •  I-95 SB Off-Ramp 26 will be detoured to SB 25 Off-Ramp
  •  I-95 SB On-Ramp 26 will be detoured to SB 27 On-Ramp

The times for all ramp closures will be from 10:00 PM to 6:00 AM. Message boards will display a few days in advance of each ramp closure.   Only one ramp will be closed per direction at one time.

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By State Senator Tony Hwang

No transparency.   No predictability.  A rigged game.  A broken system.

These are some of the thoughts that crossed my mind as I entered a Hartford hearing room June 14 to testify – yet again – against outrageous, unaffordable, and unacceptable double digit health insurance rate hike proposals.

Imagine:    A 33.8 percent rate hike?   Or, how about a 17.5 percent rate hike?

Then imagine those hikes coming ON TOP of all the past hikes which have risen more than 100+ percent in recent years.

The Affordable Care Act has proven to be anything but affordable. 

So there I was, in an obscure 7th floor office building in the middle of a work day in June.  

I was one of the few members of the public in attendance.

You see, the people I represent oppose these unaffordable and unfair annual rate hikes, but they cannot afford to take a day off to drive to Hartford and speak their minds.

I brought the anti-rate hike comments I have received at Tony.Hwang@cga.ct.gov and submitted their comments directly to the Insurance Department.

In my testimony, I told state insurance regulators and insurance company executives that unpredictable health insurance rate hikes year after year are hurting middle class families and small businesses in Connecticut.  

I told them how people are frustrated and angry.  

I told them people feel the deck is stacked against Connecticut consumers.  

I noted how this has been a wild and unsettling roller coaster ride of rate increases without any sense of predictability. These huge rate increases are unsustainable, the reasons given for the increases are weak and disguised in complex legal speak, and even garnering basic information about the public hearing required dedication, persistence and time.

Don’t like the sound of 33.8 percent rate hikes?  Me either.

Want the transparent state government you deserve?  Me too.

You can still submit your comments on these unaffordable rate hikes until July 1.

Submit testimony at http://www.ct.gov/cid/cwp/view.asp?a=4059&Q=585260 or access the link via SenatorHwang.com

Or you can send me your comments directly to me at Tony.Hwang@cga.ct.gov .

Your submissions can be as brief as you like.

These rate hikes are tax hikes on you, your business, and your families.

I thank you in advance for joining me in this very worthy David vs. Goliath fight.

Raise your voices today: otherwise 33.8 percent may one day seem to be a “minor” rate increase.

*Sen. Hwang represents Easton, Fairfield, Newtown, Weston and Westport.  On the web: www.SenatorHwang.com

 

Attached photo: Sen. Tony Hwang testifies before state insurance regulators on June 14 in opposition to double-digit rate hikes.