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Kennedy Goes Green

by marcia chambers | Apr 30, 2015 11:22 am

Marcia Chambers Photo State Sen. Ted Kennedy, Jr., co-chair of the legislature’s Environment Committee, moved on several major environmental and legislative fronts this past week in concert with the annual celebration of Earth Day.

He advocated for the “Long Island Sound Blue” plan, after the bill won unanimous passage in the House of Representatives. He pressed for passage of new bills to phase out single-use plastic bags and to prevent the sale of toothpastes and cosmetics that contain harmful microbeads. Kennedy and State Rep. James Albis (D-East Haven,) the House chair of the Environment Committee, said single-use plastic bags clog up “our waste stream and pollute our waterways,” including Long Island Sound.

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Sybil Creek Bridge: Sidewalks? What Sidewalks?

by Diana Stricker | Apr 23, 2015 8:42 am

With Permission Indian Neck residents and businessmen are relieved that the state plans to replace the 1921 bridge that spans Sybil Creek, but they would like the plans to include more improvements for pedestrian and traffic safety.

Several people said the intersection is dangerous because the sightline is limited and the sidewalks don’t extend far enough. They are asking why the $2.8 million project can’t include a few more safety provisions.

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Kennedy Takes On Tires

by marcia chambers | Apr 16, 2015 9:30 am | Comments (1)

Taking a cue from Pat Widlitz, his retired fellow legislator from Guilford who succeeded in passing new state laws to re-cycle mattresses, paint and computers, state Sen. Ted Kennedy, Jr., is now focusing on tires.

This week Kennedy brought his first bill out onto the Senate floor and and it passed in a unanimous and bi-partisan action. Its aim is to find a way to recycle tires found in towns and cities throughout the state and in so doing create new jobs.  The bill now moves to the floor of the House of Representatives. 

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Kennedy, Reed Seek ECS “Re-Jiggering”

by marcia chambers | Apr 8, 2015 7:56 am | Comments (2)

Branford legislators State Sen. Ted Kennedy, Jr., a legislative newbie, and State Rep. Lonnie Reed, an experienced hand, agree on one word: When it comes to the state’s education cost sharing grant system (ECS), they say the system is broken and needs to be “re-jiggered.”

Kennedy, Reed and School Superintendent Hamlet Hernandez went before the state legislature’s Appropriations Committee last week in support of a Senate bill that would send more state education funds back to a number cities and towns, including Branford and the other five towns in Kennedy’s 12th District. The public hearing was televised by CT-N.

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Governor Presses For Greater Long Island Sound Protection

by marcia chambers | Feb 11, 2015 12:40 pm

With Permission Long Island Sound contributes more than $5.5 million for the local economy.  It is home to more than 120 species of finfish and countless varieties of birds and other animals.  Between New York and Connecticut, the Sound’s coastline stretches more than 600 miles, according to a state report. 

But this great natural resource has also been the scene of major environmental battles over the last decade, especially in Branford.

So it was it was fitting that Gov. Dannel P. Malloy came to Branford Monday morning to emphasize his support of legislation called a “Blue Plan,” which is designed to protect the future use of Long Island Sound waters and submerged lands in a number of different ways.

The Blue Plan directs the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and UConn to convene relevant state agencies, academic institutions, and stakeholders to compile an inventory of the natural resources and the human resources of the Long Island Sound, and to use that information to develop a plan to guide future uses of the Sound’s waters and submerged lands.

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Reed Targets Energy Rates, Taxes

by marcia chambers | Jan 12, 2015 9:44 am

Mary Johnson Photo State Rep. Lonnie Reed (D-102), who was sworn in last week to her fourth term in office, wants the state to create innovative laws to reduce skyrocketing electricity rates. She also wants towns to work together on joint projects in order to reduce budgets and the high cost of property taxes, she said. She has other items on her to-do list as well. 

“When it comes to energy policy, skyrocketing electricity rates are bad for consumers, bad for business and bad for economic development of all kinds. We are tackling some huge energy issues this session,” she said in reviewing the reasons why companies often decide not to re-locate in the state of Connecticut.

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Taking Office, Kennedy Vows To Help Seniors, The Disabled

by marcia chambers | Jan 7, 2015 10:54 am

With Permission As he begins his first term as a state legislator, Ted Kennedy Jr. vowed to help more seniors and disabled people live at home instead of in institutions—and to support changes in campaign-finance laws that helped him get into office.

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“Punishment Fees” Targeted

by marcia chambers | Dec 24, 2014 9:00 am | Comments (3)

Saying innovative conservation policy and electric bill hikes are “on a collision course,” State Rep. Lonnie Reed (pictured) announced this week she will introduce legislation to cap fixed-rate charges on electric bills residents receive each month.

“I support legislation to cap the fixed rate because public policy and electric utility management are on a collision course and in dire need of a course correction. That process needs to start now.” The session begins Jan. 7.

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Kennedy: Connecticut’s Not D.C.

by marcia chambers | May 7, 2014 11:32 am

Marcia Chambers Photo One month ago Ted Kennedy, Jr., officially announced it was time for him to become the next Kennedy to seek public office, specifically the Democratic candidate for state senator from Connecticut’s 12th District. Since then he has explored the six towns that make up the district, towns “with their own history, their own culture, their own philosophies,” he said.

He described his hectic plunge into the unique and very different worlds of Branford, Guilford, North Branford, Madison, Durham and Killingworth, when he made an appearance before the Branford Democratic Town Committee, (DTC) last week.

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Pat Widlitz Says Farewell to the Legislature

by marcia chambers | Apr 3, 2014 1:52 pm | Comments (3)

With Permission Longtime state Rep. Pat Widlitz, the co-chair of the powerful House Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee, will be on the campaign trail this summer, she said yesterday—“but not for myself.”

Widlitz, a Democrat who represents the 98th Assembly District (Guilford and two sections of Branford), told the Eagle in an exclusive interview that she will not seek reelection this November. She will retire at the end of her current term on Dec. 31.

She has served 20 years as a state legislator. Before that she held local office as a Guilford selectwoman and as a member of the Board of Education.  She turns 69 in July.

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