In a lean budget year, invest in Connecticut’s people

Connecticut residents and lawmakers grappling with the state’s fiscal challenges should start the New Year with one goal in mind: to build thriving communities across our state. Economic development policy should focus on investing in our people and our workforce by protecting the public systems such as education and health care that undergird a strong economy . Despite the headline-grabbing “business climate” rankings that bear little relationship to economic growth or actual tax climates, there’s more to economic development and tax policy than rates alone —businesses seek educated and productive workforces because it pays off.

State should not cut the military funeral honors program

As we come to the conclusion of another calendar year, we face the elimination of the State of Connecticut’s participation in funeral honors for our military fallen. Again, it’s a budget line item that exemplifies insensitivity and callousness toward the providers of our freedom and our way of life in this country.

Additional cuts to public education will hurt our students

The Connecticut Association of Boards of Education (CABE) and the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents (CAPSS) are very concerned about the mid-year cut of $20 million in education aid to municipalities announced by the Office of Policy and Management yesterday. These cuts are schedule to take effect immediately and will result in diminished educational opportunities for the students who attend Connecticut’s public schools.

CT prison education cuts likely to hurt rehabilitation effort

Just this month, The Crime Report – a publication out of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York – congratulated Connecticut as a model of prison reform, saying the rates of imprisonment in the state are the lowest they’ve been in 20 years. The party seems premature, even undeserved when one knows what’s really happening inside the state’s prisons. As a part of Gov. Dannel Malloy’s budget cutting frenzy, Connecticut’s correctional education – the programming most likely to aid a prisoner’s rehabilitation – is disappearing.

The Connecticut State College system provides great value for the money

Connecticut’s public universities have much to offer; it is why I chose to return here. It is why I hope to continue to achieve personal and career goals in Connecticut and to contribute to its economic growth. Our state universities helped me grow to be a productive adult and lifelong learner, and make me proud to be a resident of this state. There has already been a 22 percent reduction in state funding since 2009, and it would be a great loss if, due to continual defunding, future CSCU students wouldn’t be able to have the opportunities that I had.

Nonprofits must be part of CT health, social service and budget solutions

Amid the negativity and divisiveness this election season, one issue has brought together Americans from across the country and both sides of the political aisle: the role of charitable nonprofits. In a recent report, nearly three quarters of those surveyed said they trust public charities with their checkbooks more than government and want to see expanded access to charitable giving.

Eligibility cuts to childcare subsidies penny wise, pound foolish

Last week, parents, childcare providers, and legislators gathered in Hartford to discuss the crucial role childcare plays in supporting Connecticut’s economy. The forum was held in response to recent news that the Care4Kids childcare subsidy program, which helps low-income families pay for childcare, will be closed to almost all new applicants. The message of the forum was clear: childcare is a critical component of the state’s economic infrastructure. Removing access to childcare for thousands of Connecticut families will cost the state more money than it will save.

A practical solution to funding special ed in Connecticut

Every student who walks through the doors each morning at one of Connecticut’s more than 1,300 public schools has their own unique skills and abilities, as well as their own needs and challenges. But despite their differences, each of these students has something in common: the right to a quality, equitably funded education. For Connecticut’s more than 74,500 students who need some type of special education service, this right is particularly important.

Humanities need state funds to combat ‘fake history’

How do students learn about Connecticut? Let’s hope it’s not from a textbook that sugar coats Connecticut’s history of slavery. In 2015 the Department of Education recommended incorporating Connecticut content into the public school social studies curriculum and created frameworks for doing so. But that doesn’t actually get content into the classroom.

Don’t shift Connecticut’s unfunded liability problem onto our children

Eroding revenues, red ink and poor fiscal management continue to undermine Connecticut’s state budget. Unaltered, the present approach will make it increasingly difficult, even impossible, for our children and future generations to have a state government that fulfills its fundamental and constitutional duty to provide for a healthier, safer and more equitable society. … But the problem is about to get far worse.