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Rep. Harding Co-Signs Legislation to Protect Sexual Assault Victims from Attackers

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HARTFORD – State Representative Stephen Harding (R-107) has co-sponsored legislation that would require anyone convicted of aggravated sexual assault to wear a global positioning system until the time of sentencing.

The legislation, SB- 239, An Act Concerning Global Positioning System Monitoring of Convicted Persons Awaiting Sentencing for Aggravated Sexual Assault, would include any offense involving the use, attempted use or threatened use of physical force against another person.

The current bill proposal would also require individuals convicted of aggravated sexual assault to pay for their GPS monitoring while they await sentencing.

“Anything we can do to protect the residents of our community from individuals who have been convicted of crimes involving sexual assault is a worthwhile endeavor,” Rep. Harding said. “I will continue to advocate for legislation which ensures violent and dangerous criminals remain in jail which is unfortunately contrary to some criminal justice measures enacted under Governor Malloy and his administration.”

The current bill proposal would require individuals convicted of aggravated sexual assault to pay for their GPS monitoring while they await sentencing. Last week, Rep. Harding and other members of the Judiciary Committee voted in of HB-239 by a 39-0 margin.

Last session, SB-1041, sought to ensure the same protections in SB-239, but due to time constraints was unable to be heard in the house for a vote despite passing unanimously in the Senate 36-0.

Legislators Honor Pair of Civic-Minded Couples at Annual Danbury Day Celebration

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Hartford – Danbury legislators gathered at the Capitol April 12, to honor two local couples for their contributions to the Danbury community. Citations from the Connecticut General Assembly were presented to the couples during the annual Danbury Day celebration.

Bob and Lynn Taborsak and Bob and Judge Dianne Yamin were thanked for their considerable civic and charitable work by State Senator Michael McLachlan (R-24) and State Representatives Stephen Harding (R-107), David Arconti (D-109), Will Duff (R-2), Michael Ferguson (R-138), Bob Godfrey (D-110), and Richard Smith (R-108). Read More →

Danbury State Officials, Danbury Hospital Push for Safe Haven Awareness

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DANBURY- State Reps. Steve Harding (R-107), Michael Ferguson (R-138), and Will Duff (R-2) along with Danbury Hospital officials and the United Way of Western Connecticut are urging for greater public awareness of the state’s Safe Haven law, which designates hospital emergency rooms as a location where newborn babies can be safely relinquished, no questions asked. The law protects parents from being prosecuted for abandonment and ensures the infant will be safe and receive adequate care.

From (L-R)State Reps. Michael Ferguson (R-138), Will Duff (R-2), Rep. Stephen Harding (R-107), Matt Cassavechia, the Director of Danbury Emergency Medical Services, and Dawn Martin, Director of Patient Care Services, highlight April 4th as Safe Haven Day.

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Bethel Legislators Applaud DOT Commissioner, Commuters for Productive Multi-Town Community Forum

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DANBURY– On Tuesday night, State Reps. Stephen Harding (R-107), Will Duff (R-2), and Senator Michael McLachlan (R-24) along with area drivers, bus and train commuters, and had a chance to voice their frustrations with the conditions of Connecticut’s transportation system, proposed fares hikes and offer ideas for improvements at a forum with the Commissioner of the Department of Transportation (DOT) James Redeker.

The forum was organized by a bipartisan group of legislators from the Route 7 corridor who are concerned that in the last few months, the state DOT has proposed raising rail and bus fares 21.28 percent over the next 3 years, significantly reducing rail service on the Danbury and Waterbury Lines. Additionally, the governor has cancelled over $4 billion in transportation projects state-wide and introduced a proposal to bring tolls back to the state, raise the gas tax 7 cents over 4 years and implement a new ‘tire tax’.

The forum was held in the Council Chambers at Danbury City Hall. State legislators in attendance were: State Representatives Mitch Bolinsky (R-Newtown), Will Duff (R-Bethel), Adam Dunsby (R-Easton), Michael Ferguson (R-Danbury), Steve Harding (R-Brookfield), Gail Lavielle (R-Wilton), Fred Wilms (R-Norwalk), David Arconti (D-Danbury), Bob Godfrey (D-Danbury) and Senator Michael McLachlan (R-Danbury).

Rep. Harding said, “It is readily apparent that Gov. Malloy’s cuts to our local transportation system will be devastating to our entire community. I stand strong with our residents against these proposed cuts and will continue to fight for proper funding to our local transportation.”

“We need to be cognizant that many people rely on public bus transportation as their only means of transportation, and without it some could not get to and from work,” said Rep. Will Duff. “I want to thank the riders HARTransit for attending our transportation forum. A 15 percent cut to state subsidies for HARTransit in Danbury proposed for July 1st, by the state DOT, will threaten much needed bus routes and services for disabled people. It is my hope Commissioner Redeker listened to those who spoke and need the bus service.”

Sen. McLachlan said, “I hope Commissioner Redeker was listening to all the people who took the time to attend this forum and share the enormous negative impact the administration’s proposals will have on businesses, commuters, and the entire community. The Connecticut economy is suffering from the already high taxes and fees imposed by Governor Malloy’s administration. Reduced schedules, increased fares, tolls, an increase in the gas tax, and all the other ways that have been proposed to suck more money out of taxpayers’ pockets; these will further cripple the economy and drive even more businesses and residents out of state.”

Sen. McLachlan along with Reps. Duff and Harding said they will work for other bi-partisan solutions to the state’s transportation problems.

Reps. Harding & Duff Thank Bethel Residents For Successful Food Drive

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BETHEL- State Reps. Stephen Harding (R-107) and Will Duff (R-2) concluded a successful food drive in the month of February which benefits the Bethel Community Food Pantry and the Bethel families’ in-need.

“Thank you to all those who helped out and participated. It is always heartwarming to see the amazing sense of community throughout Bethel and the entire 107th district,” said Rep. Harding.

“I was proud to lend a helping hand to Bethel residents who are in-need of a helping hand,” Rep. Will Duff said. “This successful food drive proves that if we all work together we can make a difference in our community.”

According to the Bethel Community Food Pantry there was 128 lbs. of food collected during the month of February.

For anyone who is in-need they can visit every other Tuesday and choose their own non-perishable food plus bread, fresh fruit and vegetables and, when available, meat and dairy products. The BCFP also offers items not covered by food stamps, such as toilet paper, shampoo, deodorant and laundry detergent.

The Bethel Community Food Pantry (BCFP) is a non-profit, community-based, 100 percent volunteer-run food pantry in downtown Bethel. The BCFP provides free food and hygiene items to Bethel residents in need year around.