Welcome to the first issue of the Tuesday Ticket, CRMA’s election e-newsletter. We hope you enjoy it and we welcome your input, idea’s and comments. It is going to be an interesting campaign season so buckle up and enjoy the ride!
News from the Campaign Trail
As you may know, the months between now and the start of the 2019 Session will be eventful as candidates for all state legislative and statewide offices campaign for election or re-election. There will be primaries in August and elections in November with multiple debates.
The outcomes of the elections will affect your business and how we represent you at the State Capitol. In order to keep our members informed we will report on candidates running for both local and state elections and discuss issues on behalf of the retail community. We will focus on the individual candidate’s position on three major areas: how to deal with the current state budget deficit, fiscal stability and economic growth and labor and work force development. Every Tuesday we will keep you updated on the latest election news with the Tuesday Ticket Newsletter. We value our members input and appreciate any feedback or recommendations you may have for future newsletters. Follow along with us on all the races from Governor, Attorney General, to your local State Representative race. Here is the latest on the three major topics below:
The State Legislature successfully passed a bipartisan budget adjustment plan bill but next year they will have to renegotiate the full biennial budget in the regular session starting January. The bill that passed restores funding for the core functions of government and does not implement any new tax increases. When examining candidates we will look at their position on the tax burden and other fiscal obstacles the retail communities are facing.
Fiscal Stability and Economic Growth
Although the legislature failed to take up the final report from the Commission on Fiscal Stability and Economic Growth, they did however agree to study a pro-growth re-balancing of state taxes and revenue. The report directly connects Connecticut’s fiscal instability to its economic struggles. We believe without drastic pro-growth policy changes Connecticut’s economy will continue to fall behind our neighboring states. It’s incumbent upon the retail community to demand change and that candidates consider the impact and economic value of Connecticut as a place to work, live, play and shop.
Labor & Workforce Development
As retailers, you understand the importance of a good employee relationship. In the 2018 legislative session there were a number of proposed bills that could have had a major impact on the business and retail community. These included expansion of paid sick leave and paid family and medical leave and an increase in the minimum wage. We expect to see all of these proposals to be resurrected next legislative session. Each of these measures is costly to our state and hampering hiring efforts in a number of key industries at a very critical time for Connecticut’s economy. It is important candidates focus pro- business legislation and make Connecticut an overall more business-friendly state.
Connecticut will hold elections for governor and lieutenant governor on November 6, 2018. The open seat for Governor caused political jockey starting early this year with multiple candidates competing for their party endorsement. As of now, there are at least five Republican candidates and two Democratic candidates on the August 14th ballot for their respective party primaries. The Connecticut Democrats endorsed Ned Lamont as their choice for candidate for governor and is being challenged by the Major of Bridgeport, Joe Ganim. Danbury Mayor, Mark Boughton, collected the Republican endorsement and is being primaried by Tim Herbst, Stephen A. Obsitnik, Bob Stefanowski and David Stemerman. We will keep you updated on all news related to the gubernatorial election.
Other Statewide Office Holders
Heading into the election, the sitting attorney general George C. Jepsen announced he would not seek a third term in 2018. Last month, the Democrat party endorsed Senate co-chairman of the Judiciary committee, William Tong. Senate democrat Paul Doyle, is also seeking the party nomination for attorney general. Other Democratic candidates for attorney general include former U.S. prosecutor Chris Mattei and Clare Kindall, assistant attorney general under current Attorney General George Jepsen. Susan Hatfield, a state prosecutor from eastern Connecticut, won the Republican endorsement for attorney general and will be challenged by state Rep. John Shaban of Redding.