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Rep. O’Neill Objects to Anti-Business Legislation

Posted on April 23, 2019 by admin


State Representative Arthur O’Neill (R-69) today objected to proposed anti-business legislation that will restrict certain companies from moving out of the state without substantial notice and severely penalize those that do.

S.B. 990 – An Act Concerning Call Centers and Notice of Closure – would force call centers with more than 50 employees to alert the Department of Labor (DOL) commissioner at least 100 days in advance if they intend to close or move out of the state, and could penalize violators $10,000 a day. It would also make those businesses ineligible to receive state financial support for five years after the relocation.

During a meeting of the Judiciary Committee Monday, Rep. O’Neill shared his concerns that this legislation provides government too much control over the affairs of private entities. He also questioned whether the language of the bill was specific enough to prevent government from imposing similar demands on other Connecticut companies in the future. Effectively, this legislation would prevent companies from shutting down, similar to the writings of Ayn Rand in the book Atlas Shrugged, he said.

“The legislation presented today mirrors science fiction writing from 60 years ago and demands companies remain in place or face significant fines unless significant notice is provided to the state,” Rep. O’Neill said. “Yet here we are, telling companies they cannot relocate without telling the state, and imposing the same kind of restrictions that were only works of fiction a short time ago. There does not appear to be any principle that I can see that would stop someone from saying 1,000 days or 10,000 days, or a fine of $10,000 or one million dollars a day. This really is the fulfillment of a nightmare scenario that was shown to us a long time ago, but step by step we have worked our way to it right now.”

The bill previously passed out of the Labor and Public Employees Committee on a party-line vote.