Eastern CT Lawmakers Support Bills to Prevent Merger or Closure of QVCC Without Legislative Approval

Posted on February 21, 2019 by jpheasant


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Photo: Reps Dauphinais and Boyd testify before the Higher Education and Employment Committee on behalf of SB-749 and HB-7120. These bills would require legislative approval before the closure or merging of Quinebaug Valley Community College or any other Connecticut institutions within the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities.

HARTFORD – State Representatives Anne Dauphinais (R-44), Rick Hayes (R-51), Pat Boyd (D-50), and Senator Mae Flexer (D-29) have backed two bills that would seek to prevent Quinebaug Valley Community College and other Connecticut institutions within the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities from merging or closing without legislative approval.

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Eastern Connecticut Lawmakers Join Fight to Prevent Closure or Consolidation of QVCC

Posted on January 30, 2019 by jpheasant


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HARTFORD – State Representatives Anne Dauphinias (R-44), Doug Dubitsky (R-47), and Rick Hayes (R-51) are a part of a Republican drafted bill that would seek to prohibit the merger or closure of an institution within the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities without the review and approval of the General Assembly.

HB6474, AN ACT CONCERNING THE MERGER OR CLOSURE OF INSTITUTIONS WITHIN THE CONNECTICUT STATE COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES, seeks to remove the power for school consolidation and closing across the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities from the CT Board of Regents for Higher Education without legislative review and input.

State Rep. Dauphinais said that she has heard from several people affiliated with QVCC who have expressed serious concern over the future of the school.

“We wanted to be a part of this bill to allow our voices and those of the communities we serve to be heard and to protect the great work QVCC has done in educating people in northeast Connecticut,” Rep. Dauphinais said.

QVCC has one of the largest endowments in the community college system. These endowments help fund scholarships and programs for the school. The future of these endowments should the Board of Regents seek to consolidate schools would be in doubt

State Representatives will be able to track and offer input during the legislative process. They will also be able to alert the public of the progress and opportunities for the public to offer comment on this legislation.

“It’s only appropriate for a decision as far reaching as closing state colleges and universities to allow the legislature to be involved in the decision. We wouldn’t want unelected bureaucrats to make these decisions. The General Assembly is accountable to the people we represent,” said Rep. Dubitsky.

“I couldn’t be more committed to protecting QVCC and I will continue to monitor bills that affect our communities and will work hard for the people of Putnam, Thompson, and Killingly,” said Rep. Hayes.

The bill currently sits in the Higher Education & Employment Advancement Committee awaiting review and debate.

Rep. Dauphinais Named Ranking Member of Housing Committee

Posted on January 10, 2019 by jpheasant


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HARTFORD – State Representative Anne Dauphinais (R-44) has been selected to serve as the Ranking Member of the General Assembly’s Housing Committee by House Republican Leader Themis Klarides.

In her role as Ranking Member, Rep. Dauphinais will work alongside fellow committee leadership on legislation relating to housing. During last session, the joint standing committee addressed issues related to funding for rehabilitation of unsafe homes, group homes and supportive housing, mortgages and foreclosures, and rental housing assistance.

“I am honored to have been selected as the Ranking Member of the Housing Committee by House Republican Leader Themis Klarides and look forward to using the experience I’ve gained over the past two years to aid me in my new role,” Rep. Dauphinais said.

Dauphinais, re-elected to her second term in November 2018, will also serve on the legislature’s Appropriations and Public Safety Committees.

The Appropriations Committee is one of the joint standing committees of the Connecticut General Assembly. It is composed of 52 members 12 Senators and 40 Representatives. The committee has jurisdiction on all matters relating to appropriations and the budgets of state agencies. Other issues under the committee’s jurisdiction include matters relating to state employees’ salaries, benefits and retirement, teachers’ retirement and veterans’ pensions and collective bargaining agreements and arbitration awards for all state employees.

The Public Safety and Security Committee has cognizance of all matters relating to the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection, civil preparedness and homeland security, state police, the state-wide organized crime investigative task force, municipal police training, fire marshals, the fire safety code, the state building code, and legalized gambling.

Her new committee assignments begin at the start of the 2019 legislative session which convened yesterday.

Rep. Dauphinais is Helping to Spread Holiday Cheer Through Volunteerism

Posted on December 14, 2018 by jpheasant


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HARTFORD – Throughout Eastern Connecticut, many parents struggle to afford the day-to-day expenses of raising a family on limited means. Thanks to programs like Tommy Toy Fund, local donations, and volunteers like State Representative Anne Dauphinais (R-Killingly), many of these children will now receive a Christmas that wasn’t otherwise possible.

“For so many of us the Christmas season is such a magical time of the year, but then there are some that it’s not so magical for. For the last several years I have been volunteering with the Tommy Toy Fund and it’s a real pleasure to be a part of something that adds a little bit of magic to those that wouldn’t have any,” said Rep. Dauphinais.

The Tommy Toy Fund uses a vacant building located in the Killingly Commons in order to facilitate the donations collected through various ‘stuff a cruiser’ events held throughout the 44th District and other Eastern Connecticut locations. Toys are then sorted and organized based off of age and gender with lists being filled by various day and weekend volunteers.

All pertinent information for the children such as; name, age, and gender of children is logged to ensure everyone receives the same amount of age appropriate toys. The items are then sorted and organized based off of age and gender with lists being filled by various day and weekend volunteers.

Due to the high volume of donations, Tommy Toy Fund has expanded to include a pick-up raffle where families can enter their names for a chance to win others larger toys and kids bikes.

Families who want to participate in the program must sign up through a registration application posted in the Norwich Bulletin in early November.

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Reps Dauphinais, Skulczyck, and Sen. Somers Welcome New Manufacturing Business to Plainfield

Posted on December 3, 2018 by jpheasant


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PLAINFIELD – State Representatives Anne Dauphinais (R-Killingly), Kevin Skulczyck (R-Griswold), and Senator Heather Somers (R-Groton) have recently welcomed Morgan Truck Body LLC, the largest manufacturer of light and medium-duty truck bodies in North America to Eastern Connecticut.

According to Morgan Truck Body LLC, the manufacturing plant will accommodate cargo of every configuration — from parcel delivery to furniture movers and heavy-equipment hauling, insulated and refrigerated units, bottled gas transport, and flatbed/stake & platform bodies.

“There is nothing better than a large manufacturing firm showing confidence in Connecticut’s economy by not only choosing our state for their new facility, but also bringing with it almost 200 jobs for Connecticut’s families,” Rep. Skulczyck said.

“It was an honor to attend the ribbon cutting for Morgan Truck Body,” Rep. Dauphinais said. With so many challenges facing the state, having the opportunity to witness a new manufacturing business coming to our local community was a great pleasure.”

“We are united as a community in welcoming Morgan Truck Body to Plainfield,” Sen. Somers said. “As lawmakers, we will continue working tirelessly to pass policies at the State Capitol which allow manufacturers like Morgan Truck Body to grow and thrive in Plainfield and throughout our state.”

The 175,000 square-foot facility will be located in Plainfield at the former site of the American Manufacturing Plant on Moosup Pond Road. This will be the manufacturers 13th location in the United States and Canada, but first in New England.

The lawmakers presented the company with a legislative citation to commemorate their grand opening.

 

Rep. Dauphinais to Host Pre-Session Office Hours

Posted on November 27, 2018 by jpheasant


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HARTFORD – State Representative Anne Dauphinais (R-Killingly) will be hosting office hours for Killingly and Plainfield residents who want to discuss the upcoming legislative session.

The legislative updates will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, December 4th and Thursday, December 6th at the Plainfield Recreational Center Library and Killingly Town Hall.

Rep. Dauphinais will be hosting several other legislative updates throughout the session but wanted to give residents an opportunity to discuss issues prior to convening on January 9th, 2019 .

Anyone with questions prior to the event are encouraged to call her State Capitol office at 800-842-1423 or email her at Anne.Dauphinais@housegop.ct.gov.

Plainfield Delegation Spearheads Town Transit Revival

Posted on September 20, 2018 by jpheasant


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PLAINFIELD – State Representatives Anne Dauphinais, Kevin Skulczyck, and Senator Heather Somers are pleased to announce that after meeting with the Northeastern Connecticut Council of Governments (NECOGG) and the Department of Transportation (DOT), the lawmakers were able to get a commitment from the state to put Plainfield Transit back into action. DOT was able to make this possible without adding any new costs to the taxpayers by revising and eliminating runs that had become stagnant.

The legislators have successful secured bus service to the citizens of Plainfield after years of not having any transit. Implementation can begin once the Town of Plainfield has fulfilled their required 17% contribution of funding for the project with the state and federal government contributing the remaining 83%.

The lawmakers said “We’d like thank the Department of Transportation for going above and beyond to provide this much needed service to the residents of Plainfield and especially for their success in absorbing the cost efficiently without additional costs to the State Budget.”

Dauphinais, Skulczyck, and Somers held a Legislative Town Hall last month to address the transportation issue Plainfield has been facing. Last night, the lawmakers attended a Board of Finance meeting in Plainfield to confirm this report given during the Town Hall.

Reps Dauphinais, Skulczyck and Sen. Somers are hopeful this will pass at a special finance meeting being held next Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. For anyone interested in attending, the meeting is open to the public.

Back to School Safety

Posted on September 4, 2018 by jpheasant


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With the increase in Killingly and Plainfield children walking, crossing the street and exiting their buses during this school year, it is extremely important that anyone driving within these areas obey all safety rules/regulations in order to ensure that they arrive there and home safely.

Below are a few tips motorists should obey while traveling along our local streets:

  • Watch for children traveling to school when driving through local neighborhoods with school zones. Drive SLOWLY.
  • Watch for children walking in the street, especially if there are no sidewalks in the neighborhood. In addition, be on the lookout for children playing and gathering near school bus stops. State law prohibits vehicles from passing a school bus while its lights are flashing.
  • Many busses are now equipped with cameras to record those individuals who fail to comply with this law.
  • Always observe the no-passing law and expect the unexpected while traveling near school buses in school driveways.

Here are a few tips you can share with your children:

  • Be waiting at your bus stop at least 5 minutes ahead of the scheduled pick up time.
  • Wait approximately 10 feet back from the road. Try and wear clothing with colors that can easily be spotted by motorists. Always wait until the bus driver tells you to cross the street before you actually do. That way you can be sure that he/she has safely verified that no motorists are coming.
  • If you drop something in the road leave it. If it is important, make sure the bus driver knows you are about to bend down and possibly disappear from his/her sight. If an important item ends up underneath the bus leave it alone.
    ** Do not retrieve it unless the bus driver gives you permission to do so**
  • When it’s time to board the bus, do so quickly and safely

Reps Dauphinais, Skulczyck and Sen. Somers Hosting Transportation Forum

Posted on August 10, 2018 by jpheasant


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PLAINFIELD – State Representatives Kevin Skulczyck (R-45), Anne Dauphinais (R-44), and State Sen. Heather Somers (R-18) announced they will be hosting a sit down meeting with area residents to discuss state Transportation challenges.

The event will be held on Wednesday, August 15th at the Plainfield Town Hall and is open to the public and residents are encouraged to attend.

WHERE: Plainfield Town Hall, 8 Community Ave, Plainfield

WHEN: Wednesday, August 15th from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

The legislators ask that any constituents with questions ahead of the event call Rep. Skulczyck or Rep. Dauphinais at their State Capitol offices at 800-842-1423 or email, Kevin.Skulczyck@housegop.ct.gov, Anne.Dauphinais@housegop.ct.gov. For Sen. Somers please email her at Heather.Somers@cga.ct.gov or call 800-842-1421.

Rep. Dauphinais ‘Health Insurance Mandate Pushes Additional Costs onto Those Already Insured’

Posted on August 1, 2018 by jpheasant


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HARTFORD – Earlier this year, an insurance bill was brought forth on the House floor which now added pregnancy as a “qualifying event for special enrollment periods for certain individuals.”

“Instead of purchasing insurance during open enrollment periods and pooling the risk among those insured, the passage of Public Act 18-43 will now require all private insurance companies to allow an uninsured woman who becomes pregnant enrollment up to 30 days after commencement,” Rep. Dauphinais said.

Representative Dauphinais was one of ten state representatives in the general assembly to vote against this bill, despite hers and others’ opposition, the bill passed. Rep. Dauphinais said there were a few reasons as to why she voted “no”.

  1. It will increase annual heath care premiums for everyone in the state that has private health insurance by $75-100 or more. This will make it harder for many to afford their health insurance…not easier.
  2. Connecticut tax payers already subsidize and/or pay for healthcare for pregnant woman if uninsured through Medicaid or Husky A. Dauphinais said just recently an individual told her that she was uninsured, became pregnant and her pregnancy was 100% covered through Husky Insurance.
  3. The purpose of insurance is to provide protection against a possible eventuality not after it actually takes place. If this were the case no one would buy insurance but wait until after the incident occurred. Car insurance after an accident, House insurance after your house burns down, health insurance after one is diagnosed with cancer or finally a ….pregnancy. Mandating Insurance companies for this coverage “after the fact” raises the risk pool and therefore results in higher premiums for everyone.

Rep. Dauphinais said many of her legislative colleagues had various concerns with this bill, but unfortunately due to its catchy title they felt voting against it would be seen as though they were against helping uninsured pregnant women acquire healthcare.

“My commitment to not costing the taxpayers more money remains and that this bill was another unnecessary mandate on our businesses,” Dauphinais said. “I promised to be a different type of legislator, one that doesn’t go along with the crowd and if I went along with bills that take more money out of your pocket then I am not keeping that promise.”