Focus

Focus: TAXES & AFFORDABILITY

Despite one of the worst economic conditions in generations, the Legislature’s
majority passed the largest increase in taxes & fees in CT’s history, which equaled over $2 billion dollars to our residents. The budget directly increased taxes on middle class families. CT’s rate of spending and borrowing is unacceptable.

SOLUTIONS:

  • Fiscal Accountability
    Voted against budget implementation proposals that increased governmental spending without accountability, and proposed alternative budget options. Objected to excessive bonding that places overwhelming debt on taxpayers and future generations. CT already has the highest debt ratio per person in the nation. Recent budget/bonding have only added to this problem.
  • Government Excess
    Proposed to eliminate longevity bonuses, which reward state employees simply for long term employment, a practice that is outdated and far too expensive to maintain.
  • Pension Reform
    Proposed to evaluate “defined benefit” pension, one ofthe fastest growing pieces of the state budget, against the benefits of a “defined contribution” plan, similar to private sector pension plans around the country.

Focus: ECONOMY & JOBS

Economic uncertainty, high governmental costs and restrictive regulatory bureaucracy are tremendous barriers to the creation of private sector jobs. Unfortunately, these factors are what employers and small businesses in our state struggle with every day.

SOLUTIONS:

  • Eliminate Outdated and Bureaucratic Regulations (PA 14-187)
    Helped draft legislation that will eliminate nearly a thousand pages of state regulations identified as obsolete, duplicate, excessively burdensome, or otherwise ineffective or unnecessary. This bill made CT’s regulations more streamlined, up-to-date and user-friendly to help our residents and employers, especially small businesses.
  • Job Employment for the Disabled (PA 13-277)
    Advocated and supported legislation to empower those with developmental disabilities to achieve a sense of independence and enriched living through work. PA 13-277 will allow community non-profits to support and coordinate employment opportunities for the developmentally disabled.
  • Jobs via Bioscience Investments (PA 13-239)
    As Co-Chair of the legislature’s bipartisan Bioscience Caucus, spearheaded legislation to make CT a world leader in bioscience research. The law strengthens the State’s capacity to create competitive investment tools, attract additional federal and private dollars, and re-energize CT’s economic landscape toward increased job growth and financial sustainability.
  • Advanced Manufacturing Education (PA 11-1 October Special Session)
    Helped Housatonic Community College obtain a portion of a $17.8 million grant to build a state of the art manufacturing education center.

Focus: SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

We can maintain a balance between fiscal accountability and social responsibility. Government has a moral responsibility to ensure that the most vulnerable and at-risk in our communities are protected and guided to self-empowerment.

COMMITMENT TO COMMUNITY:

  • Historic Autism Insurance Coverage (PA 13-84)
    Championed bipartisan legislation ensuring individuals with autism, who are currently covered by 2008 insurance legislation, will not have a gap in their coverage because of a possible change in the definition of the autism spectrum and related Affordable Care Act requirements.
  • Rail Commuters Safety & Advocacy (PA 13-178)
    Authored amendment legislation which preserved the advocacy authority of the CT Rail Commuter Council and empowered the council to protect rail commuters’ right to challenge and demand the highest level of service and safety in commuter rail lines.
  • Cell Tower and Siting Council Legislation (PA 12-165)
    Supported greater local control and considerations toward public safety and community quality of life related to cell tower locations.
  • GMO Food Labeling (PA 13-183)
    Worked with local & international Genetically Engineered Food (GMO) labeling advocacy groups to pass landmark food labeling legislation that protect our “right to know” what is in our food source.
  • Bone Marrow Testing Insurance Coverage (PA 11-88)
    Provided bipartisan leadership to develop landmark insurance coverage of bone marrow testing to support patients and families affected by blood cell cancers such as leukemia and Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Read more about the impact of Tony’s legislative leadership »