School superintendents say the public education system in Connecticut needs an overhaul. The superintendents have unveiled a bold plan to transform schooling in the state.
It's not enough anymore to give kids an opportunity to learn, says Joseph Cirasuolo, executive director of the CT Association of Public School Superintendents. He says schools have to insure that all kids achieve at high levels.
Two major bills aimed at boosting job creation in Connecticut have passed the legislature in a special session. WNPR’s Harriet Jones reports.
Lawmakers Wednesday approved a $626 million effort to revamp Connecticut’s economic development strategy. Among other measures the jobs bill contains a grant and loan program for small businesses, plans to streamline state regulation, new approaches to workforce development and tax credits for hiring the long-term unemployed. House Majority leader Brendan Sharkey.
The state legislature is calling a special session tomorrow. It’s a tale of two bills: Jobs and Jackson Labs.
Governor Malloy has unveiled a jobs plan. It’s focused on small business growth, startup investments for innovative firms, and streamlining the process for business to get things done. These are all ideas that the governor and legislative leaders expect to get some level of bi-partisan support.
Every ten years, a bipartisan committee made up of members of Connecticut's General Assembly go through the tedious process of redrawing legislative and congressional maps. Often the Reapportionment committee's work breaks down into partisan politics. Earlier this week, the Reapportionment committee wrote a letter to Governor Dannel Malloy acknowledging that they will miss their September 15th deadline, which is today. Joining us by phone is House Minority leader and co-chair of the Reapportionment committee Lawrence Cafero.
OK, I know this might not be as easy and fun as yesterday's show on comic books, but if the current state budget were a comic book, it would be about a dystopian future. (And present for that matter ...)
The state constitution requires that the budget be balanced by Friday. It isn't. The plan for doing that included significant givebacks by the state employees. They wouldn't do it.
We'll be talking with members of the state congressional delegation from the city. They'll share their thoughts about the state of Hartford, and what lawmakers are doing to solve some of the city’s problems - from violence, to education scores, to literacy rates.
Though education advocates are expressing frustration at an overall lack of progress during this legislative session, there’s one area where people are feeling cautiously optimistic. A bill focusing on early childhood education could help tackle the state’s stubborn achievement gap, and may better position Connecticut for future federal funding.
The question asked by an exasperated state legislator at an informational hearing last week was the one posed frequently, if not publicly, at the state Capitol about Connecticut's always-in-a-hurry governor: "Why can't this wait?" The query, by Rep. Roberta Willis, D-Salisbury, concerned Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's fast-track plan to remake the UConn Health Center, but it could have applied to any major initiative, beginning with the budget.
With strong support from Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, the Senate voted 18 to 17 Wednesday to pass the nation's first state mandate on private employers to offer paid sick days. It now goes to the House, where passage is expected. The bill, which passed with only one Republican vote, has a limited reach, applying to dozens of specific types of service workers at companies with more than 50 employees. Sponsors say it will affect 300,000 workers.
Connecticut lawmakers heard from education advocates Thursday afternoon about a new bill that would create a model for evaluating teachers. But the state's teachers' unions don't agree on it, and others say it doesn't go far enough.
Hundreds of teachers face lay-offs in the state due to budget constraints. But using seniority as the only means to decide who stays and who goes is unprofessional, says Alex Johnston. Johnston is the CEO of ConnCann, an education advocacy group.
After years of failed lobbying, some legislation in the state may be creeping closer to the governor's desk now because a Democrat sits there. Bills on the death penalty and paid sick leave all have a better chance of passing this year.
Bruce Morris, D-Norwalk, is a state representative and also a reverend. And he admits he doesn't always see eye to eye with his fellow faith leaders on theological issues.
A bill that would allow undocumented students to pay in-state tuition rates has passed in the state House and now moves to the Senate.
The legislation would allow students who have graduated from a Connecticut high school after attending for at least four years to be eligible for the state tuition rate at a public college or university.
A similar bill was vetoed by former Governor Jodi Rell in 2007. But this year, Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy says he'll sign the bill into law.
Malloy's support is embraced by undocumented students like Carolina Bortolleto.
A bill that would raise the starting age for kindergarten has passed out of the Appropriations Committee. Critics are concerned that it does not provide an alternative for kids whose families cant afford an extra year of preschool.
The idea is to require children entering kindergarten to be five years old by October 1st. This new law would take effect in 2015, and supporters say it would improve teaching and learning because right now, the age range in kindergarten is too wide.
A controversial bill that would have relaxed restrictions for online ticket brokers will not go forward in this legislative session. Lawmakers say they need more time to determine what’s best for Connecticut consumers.
Ticket scalping was legalized in Connecticut in 2007. Now there’s a flourishing online ticket resale market. Resale brokers supported a bill that would have required entertainment and sports venues to only sell tickets that could be resold.
Yesterday, the general Assembly's Judiciary Committee heard public testimony on a host of bills aimed at better protecting victims of domestic violence. Joining us by phone is State Representative Mae Flexer - she is a member of the legislature's Judiciary committee and chairwoman of the Speaker’s Task Force on Domestic Violence.
Yesterday at the State Capitol, the General Assembly's Judiciary heard testimony on a number of marijuana related bills being considered by the state legislature this year, including the decriminalization of possession of small amounts of Marijuana, and the use of marijuana for medical purposes. Joining us to talk about this is Stamford state representative Gerald Fox, the house chair of the Judiciary committee.
Today is Connecticut Association of Boards of Education day at the state Capitol. Some 200 school board members, students, and teachers will spend the day talking with state lawmakers about their concerns and their legislative agenda. Joining us is Patrice McCarthy, Deputy Director and General Counsel of The Connecticut Association of Boards of Education.
The Environment Committee is considering legislation that would ban the use of cash register receipts that contain the chemical, BPA. The bill would also require a research institute at UConn to develop a list of toxic chemicals.
Governor Dannel Malloy unveiled his new two year budget yesterday. The $19.7 budget for 2012 seeks to close a $3.2 billion deficit through tax hikes, spending cuts, and 2 billion dollars in union concessions.