State Rep. Sean Scanlon (D-Guilford-Branford) announced today he will seek a third term in the Connecticut General Assembly.
Scanlon, 31, ran unopposed in the 2016 election. He said he plans to seek public campaign financing. Scanlon represents Stony Creek and Pine Orchard in Branford and the town of Guilford.
State Rep. Lonnie Reed (D-Branford) says she will make an announcement when the time is right. So far she has not declared, but it appears that she may be contemplating a sixth term as Branford’s representative. “I am hard at work on the upcoming session, focusing on growing the economy and jobs,” she said in an interview. She serves as the chair of the Energy and Technology Committee, is a member of Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee and chairs the BiPartisan Life Sciences Caucus.
In a press release, Scanlon said,“It has been the honor of my life to wake up every day and serve the people of Guilford and Branford for the last three years. Whether it’s helping people who call my office in need of assistance or working on legislation to improve our state and community, I am proud of what I’ve been able to do for this district and I am excited about what I know we can accomplish together in the future,” he said.
Restoring State Funds to Branford & Guilford
In the last two years, Scanlon and other members of the delegation fought to restore millions of dollars in proposed state cuts to Branford and Guilford and to their schools.
In both 2016 and 2017, initial state budget proposals had Guilford and Branford losing millions of dollars in education and town aid. Alongside Reed and State. Sen. Ted Kennedy, Jr., Scanlon worked to successfully reverse multi-million dollar cuts. “In 2017, instead of a $3 million cut to Branford and Guilford each, the final version of the state budget cut both towns by less than $200,000 each,” he said.
“I heard loud and clear from my constituents that a $3 million cut to our towns and schools would be totally unacceptable and I’m proud to have worked tirelessly to block those massive cuts in both 2016 and 2017 and protect our communities,” he said.
In addition to reversing large cuts, Scanlon, along with other members of the delegation, helped to deliver new funding, including $30 million for the new Walsh Middle School in Branford. He worked to get $650,000 for dredging the Stony Creek town dock area, making improvements to the boat launch and repairing the seawall and town beach.
Uber- Lyft And Consumers
As chairman of the General Assembly’s Insurance and Real Estate Committee, Scanlon sponsored new regulations for popular ride-share companies like Uber and Lyft. As of Jan.1, all Uber and Lyft drivers are required to undergo strong background checks, drive safer vehicles and carry comprehensive insurance.
“With this law, we were able to add important consumer protections that keep people safe while working with the companies to ensure we weren’t stifling a growing business that provides an important service and creates jobs,” said Scanlon. “That, to me, is how government should always operate.”
In addition to the Uber bill, Scanlon championed several other bills last session including a bipartisan bill that would ensure Connecticut women would still have access to quality and affordable healthcare even if the Affordable Care Act was repealed and a new law to continue the fight against the opioid epidemic. The 2017 opioid bill built on the work done by Scanlon to help write and pass bills on the topic in 2015 and 2016.
“Since taking office I’ve made combating the opioid epidemic one of my biggest priorities and I’m proud of the three bills I’ve helped write and pass in Hartford and the work I’ve done locally with others on projects like our annual Drug Take Back Day to try and raise awareness about this horrible epidemic,” Scanlon said.
The Budget Deficit
Facing a large budget deficit in 2017, Scanlon has called for both parties to work together and come up with a bi-partisan budget - something they did in October 2017.
“The only way we are going to get out of this perpetual cycle of budget deficits is if we work together to grow Connecticut’s economy,” said Scanlon. “This won’t happen overnight but it requires Hartford to be more attentive to the needs of businesses large and small. On many occasions I’ve visited a business in my district and when I ask how I can help they mention one or two little things that I am then able to work on for them. If we as Democrats and Republicans continue working together like we did with this last budget, helping on the ‘little things’ will quickly turn into a better climate for growth and job creation and that’s something I’ll continue to make my biggest priority.
“I have always viewed this job as listening first and acting second and I’m proud of what I’ve been able to do working with and on behalf of the amazing people of Guilford and Branford,” said Scanlon. “It’s an honor to serve, it would be an honor to continue and I hope the voters of this district will allow me to represent them for another two years.”