Posted on February 14, 2019 by Greg MacKinnon
HARTFORD – State Representative Mitch Bolinsky (R-Newtown) spoke in favor of a new law that would allow minors holding a Connecticut “Graduated Driver’s License” to use backup cameras in their vehicles, without fear of being in violation of the state’s existing distracted driving laws.
Rep. Bolinsky said, “Currently, younger drivers are not allowed to glance down at their backup cameras without violating state law on distracted driving. I am fully supportive of enforcing our distracted driving laws, but backup cameras are devices that categorically help drivers avoid backing collisions.”
During his testimony, Rep. Bolinsky explained that modern engineering of many motor vehicles has made the classic over-the-shoulder check to see if there are obstacles far less effective. “The rear ends of most cars and light trucks now tend to be raked higher than the front, for aerodynamic reasons. Rear visibility no longer offers low-profile vision in these modern vehicles. This problem has been addressed with federally mandated backup cameras in all models built for sale in the United States, effective with the 2017 model year. Phase-in began in 2016. It’s time for Connecticut to get with the program.
Posted on February 11, 2019 by Greg MacKinnon
HARTFORD – State Representative Mitch Bolinsky (R-Newtown) testified today in support of two separate provisions that will improve public health for all residents of Connecticut. Bolinsky gave compelling testimony on a bill that seeks to expand eligibility to donate blood and another bill that officially licenses art therapists. The genesis of both legislative proposals came directly from constituent requests.
According to Rep. Bolinsky, his advocacy for the blood donor bill began in late 2017 when a Newtown High School senior, Harrison Eppers, and his friend, Rory Edwards, contacted him. Both of these young men have since graduated Newtown High School but submitted captivating testimony. In their place, Michael Enaye has stepped-up to coordinate blood drives at Newtown High School. He too, submitted testimony.
Harry’s mother, Shelley, was being treated for Multiple Myeloma, a rare blood cancer. Blood transfusions are needed to help fight this form of cancer and one way to assure a reliable supply of life-saving is to hold blood drives. Harry and Rory held one in Newtown and the drive was a success, but they learned it could have had twice the impact if not for a shortcoming in state law. Unlike most other states, Connecticut currently does not allow individuals under the age of 17 to be blood donors.
Posted on February 1, 2019 by Greg MacKinnon
Wonderful to participating in World Read Aloud Day at Newtown Middle School this morning! I was able to read one of my personal favorites, Dr. Seuss’ “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!” to a group of very enthusiastic students. We talked about the concepts of making the most out of life and the values of resiliency, as well as delving in to some very fun conversation about how state and federal governments work. I am confident that the all of the young men and women I spoke with today will be highly engaged citizens in the future.