Lessons of the abolitionists are important today

The organizing efforts of black and white abolitionists in the 1800s can provide us with powerful inspiration as we face the dangers of Trump and the Republican majority. That’s one reason on May 18 I will be joining the upcoming celebration of Frederick Douglass’s first visit to the capital city at the Center Church (First Church of Christ in Hartford).

Partnership key to building stronger career pathways for CT residents

Connecticut’s legislature has proposed to create a task force to study the effectiveness, impact and cohesiveness of workforce development programs and initiatives in the state. The commitment to promote better coordination and collaboration and a more effective and efficient system for workforce development should be applauded. One of the first agenda items for the task force should be to identify and examine existing strategies that demonstrate cross-cutting, collaborative approaches to job training and employment and promise opportunity for residents who face the greatest challenges to obtaining a living wage.

MGM bill is a net loser for Connecticut

Right now, in Hartford, state legislators are facing a decision that will have repercussions for Connecticut workers and taxpayers for years to come. The General Assembly is considering three different bills regarding the future of Connecticut’s gaming industry, and while they deliberate, thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in casino revenue sharing hang in the balance.

Equitable pay for women worth billions to Connecticut

According to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, nationally, women earn about 80 cents for every dollar earned by men and this gap is even more pronounced for women of color – black women earn 63 cents and Hispanic women earn 54 cents as compared to white men. This economic injustice affects not only women, but every man and child who has a woman in their lives.

Solving Connecticut’s budget woes requires fact, not fiction

A recent op-ed by Erik Cafarella propagates popular budget fictions—the same misinformation I heard at a recent Appropriations Committee hearing. While his op-ed claims Connecticut suffers under a heavy tax burden, a new report from the Center for Public Policy and Social Research at Central Connecticut State University found that Connecticut actually has the lowest business taxes per private sector worker in the region, and the lowest business taxes as a share of state and local taxes in the United States.

A win-win for Connecticut’s economy, neighborhoods and environment

As a mayor, I start every day thinking about how our city can create the conditions for more economic growth, job creation and investment in our neighborhoods. And I know the same goes for mayors across the state. Along with the administration and leaders on both sides of the aisle, our number one priority is making Connecticut the best state in the country for families and businesses to build their future. And while there are many existing economic development tools we can use, there’s a new idea moving its way through Hartford that could have a substantial impact for Connecticut small businesses and homeowners—with positive benefits for our environment, too.

Connecticut can help close the gender wage gap by legislative action

This year, Connecticut has an opportunity to shine as a leader in policies that combat the gender wage gap and support women, especially women of color, in the workforce. A year from now, on Equal Pay Day, I hope we can look back at our legislative accomplishments in 2017 and know that our future is one where Connecticut women and girls get paid what they are worth.

CEA attack on Achievement First ‘blatantly political’ and false

The Connecticut Education Association’s criticism of Achievement First is a blatantly political attack that willfully misrepresents AF’s leaders, finances and students. As the first person in my family to graduate from college, I know what education has done for my family and me. Like Dacia Toll, the founder of Achievement First (AF), I am passionate about education and I want the same opportunities for all children as my children received.

Despite officials’ claims, Connecticut not on positive job-growth trajectory

I read with great concern and disappointment a recent article that appeared in the Sunday Stamford Advocate (and affiliated papers) on 1/8/17 entitled “New Jobs are job No. 1.” As a business owner, business leader and one connected with hundreds of businesses in the state and the region, I can comfortably say that many of the perceptions stated by the various elected officials quoted in this piece are categorically false and demonstrate how out of touch many in elected office in Hartford seem to be.

New legislative balance brings hope for Connecticut businesses

This recession also dampened the normally optimistic view of the future for many of the state’s residents, evident in the polling and focus groups CBIA conducted throughout the 2016 election season. But because of the resiliency of Connecticut businesses and their workforces, our companies are competing and winning every day.Employers are heartened by the hope that the new balance in the state legislature will lead to more bipartisanship, and therefore better policy choices, as they are by Gov. Dannel Malloy’s emphasis on a more predictable and stable fiscal environment for businesses in his Opening Day address to the General Assembly.

‘Pension spiking’ bleeding Connecticut’s budget — bigtime

“Pension Spiking” is the term used to describe the common practice whereby state and government employees contrive to boost their pensions in the last years of their employment. Pension spiking has been going on for years throughout the country, but it has been raised to a new level in Connecticut during Gov. Dannel Malloy’s two terms. By appointing a number of loyal Democrat legislators to judgeships or other high ranking positions in his administration, he has “spiked” their retirement benefits.