THE CONNECTICUT GENERAL ASSEMBLY

THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

(The House of Representatives was called to order at 11: 30 o'clock a. m. , Representative Aresimowicz of the 30th District in the Chair. )

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH): Will the House please come to order. Will members, staff and guests, please rise. Direct your attention to the Dias, where Father Charles Jacobs will lead us in prayer.

GUEST CHAPLAIN CHARLES E. JACOBS:

Let us pray.

Acknowledging the presence of God among us and within us, let us pray. Lord, bless your Legislators with wisdom, as they address the proposed Bills before them today. We ask your blessing also upon our Huskies, as we anticipate their arrival among us; and to this we say, Amen. Thank you.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Will Representative Russell Morin please come to the Dias and lead us in the Pledge of Allegiance?

REP. MORIN (28TH):

(All) I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Is there any business on the Clerk's desk?

CLERK:

Yes, Mr. Speaker, there is a list of Bills, No. 53, dated April 19, 2017.

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Ritter of the 1st, good morning, Mr. Majority Leader.

REP. RITTER (1ST):

Before I turn my attention to this, Mr. Speaker, I move that we waive the reading of the list of Bills and the Bills be referred to the committees indicated.

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

So ordered. (Gavel)

CLERK:

The only other business, Mr. Speaker, is the Daily Calendar.

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, Mr. Clerk. Are there any announcements or introductions? Representative Ritter, of the 1st District, you have the floor, sir.

REP. RITTER (1ST):

Mr. Speaker, I'm told that a couple of our reps are going to introduce a championship hockey team, and later we will welcome UConn, which has won many championships since 1995 in women's and men's basketball. But, there was a championship game yesterday, and the House Democrats for the first time in a very long time, maybe ever, did win the 30th anniversary or 30th Annual John Blair Championship, beating the Army in the finals and the thrilling game to the House Democrats, Representative Soto, the Speaker, myself, Representative Arconti were the four Reps. We had a few other staffers who did help the team, and we are champions. Thank you very much. [Applause]

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir, congratulations. It should also be noted in the semi-final game it was the Majority Leader that went on a streak of five consecutive three pointers to really pace out the nonpartisan staff, but it's now our guess that there will be a fiscal note attached to every single one of his Bills. So, we'll see how that is moving forward. [Laughter]

Are there any other announcements or introductions? Representative O'Dea, of the 125th, you have the floor, sir.

REP. O'DEA (125TH):

Well, I commend whoever shorted me. I just realized that it was probably Mr. Shaban. But I just want to say to Mr. Ritter, congratulations. But I want to start an over 50 league next year for the basketball tournament and I think that we may have a chance with that. So, thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir. I will have to wait five years to participate and I think Representative Ritter will have to wait like at least 12, but we're all for it.

Are there any other announcements or introductions? Representative Zawistowski of the 61st, you have the floor, Madam.

REP. ZAWISTOWSKI (61ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I put my phone on my button and do not have an announcement. Thank you very much.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Well, good morning, it's good to see you. Representative Curry of the 11th District, you have the floor, sir.

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, I apologize, that was on an error.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Ferraro of the 117th, you have the floor, sir.

REP. FERRARO (117TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, good morning to you.

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Good morning, sir.

REP. FERRARO (117TH):

I have a happy announcement to make today. As of 7 o'clock this morning, my second grandchild, Leo Alexander was born, 7 pounds, 10 ounces. I'm a happy guy today.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Congratulations. [Applause]

REP. FERRARO (117TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative, it's also tradition when you start getting the photos, you need to go around and show us all the photos. Okay. We'll come by and take a look. Thank you, sir.

Any other announcements or introductions? Representative Scanlon of the 98th District, you have the floor, sir.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and good morning to you. I am very proud to be joined today by the Guilford Boys Ice Hockey Team. And I'm standing here with Co-Captains, Ricky Sandella and Kyle Dwyer, and Coach Ralph Russo. The other boys on the team are in the Well. They won the Division II State Championship this year, in addition to winning the SEC Championship this year. And I'm going to kick it over to my colleague, Representative Candelora, and then I'm going to ask you all to join us in welcoming these guys.

REP. CANDELORA (86TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, good morning.

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Good morning, sir.

REP. CANDELORA (86TH):

Thank you. I'm just here to congratulate, as well, the Guilford Ice Hockey Team on their two victories and would ask that the Chamber rise and give them a warm congratulations. [Applause]

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Congratulations on your accomplishment. I know, with any activity, the season grinds on and becomes very difficult the amount of dedication by you all and your parents and others that supported you; that should really be commended. Thank you. And then you look great on this side of the aisle, if you'd like us to get you a chair over here, we'd be more than happy. [Laughter]

UNKNOWN SPEAKER:

I'm only here because our leader is not in the room, hopefully she won't find out. [Laughter]

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Are there any other announcements or introductions? The Chamber will stand at ease. Will the Clerk please call Calendar 302?

CLERK:

The State of Connecticut, House of Representatives Calendar, Wednesday, April 19, 2017. On page 33, Calendar No. 302, Substitute House Bill No. 7121, AN ACT CONCERNING REVISIONS TO THE STATE'S SAFE HAVEN LAWS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Human Services.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Curry, you have the floor, sir.

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I move acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the Bill.

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Currey, you have the floor, sir.

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, earlier this month, many of our colleagues here in the Chamber either held press conferences or submitted press releases to their local papers in an effort to spotlight Connecticut's Second Annual Safe Haven's Day. Since its passage in 2000, championed by the late, Ann Dandrow, Connecticut's Safe Haven Law has saved 27 infants from abandonment and possibly near-certain death. The parents too of these infants have been saved from possible incarceration and a life overshadowed by the crime of neonaticide most often committed in a moment of panic. Our Safe Haven's Law helps to prevent the crime of neonaticide from anyone, allowing anyone to drop off a newborn baby within 30 days of life at any hospital or emergency room --

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Currey, if you'll hold on one moment, please.

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Ladies and gentlemen of the Chamber, Representative Currey is bringing out a Bill that was actually introduced by Representative Ann Dandrow, who we lost this year. Talking about the Safe Haven Bill. If you have discussions that are going on, please bring them outside. Representative Currey, please proceed, sir.

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. Again, for those not family with the Safe Haven's Law. Safe Haven's Law, here in Connecticut, helps prevent the crime of neonaticide, allowing anyone to drop off a newborn baby within 30 days of life at any hospital or emergency room in Connecticut. The person dropping off this baby, whether it's the infant's mother, father, grandparent, or family friend, will be given a bracelet matching one to put on the infant by the hospital staff.

The police will not be called and no one will be arrested, assuming the infant has not been abused and/or neglected. Now, if the parent of this baby decides to change their mind within 30 days, they now have this bracelet and they may petition to get this child back.

The legislation that you have before you today, having received unanimous support out of the Human Service Committee, looks to strengthen this law, this life-saving law in a number of ways; including, we've removed the statutory reference that would have labeled any parent or anyone dropping off a baby as abusive and/or neglectful. We've added a requirement that DCF must identify a prospective adoptive parent not later than one business day, assuming one is available, in an effort to begin the immediate need for positive parent/child bonding. We've also specified conditions in which DCF may require DNA testing via court order as well as any circumstances in which a Safe Haven, and only a Safe Haven infant, may be removed from a prospective adoptive parent's home as well as provide a process for prospective adoptive parents --

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Currey. [Gavel] Ladies and gentlemen, I have Representative Case in the back of the room that can't hear Representative Currey speaking. Please, if you're having conversations, bring them outside into the hall. Representative Currey, please proceed.

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I'll be sure to speak up so Ranking Member Case can be sure to hear me. We've also included, we've provided a process for prospective adoptive parents to request a hearing if a child has been removed after the 30 days of continuous care and control. But most importantly, this Bill provides anonymity to the child, an assumption I believe many of our colleagues back in the day had when this Bill was originally passed.

Now, this would be unless a hospital employee believes that this infant was abused and/or neglected. Before I open up for comments, I just wanted to thank the Committee leadership and their members, Commissioner Katz, her team at DCF, the Connecticut Hospital Association, and the many advocates for their continued partnership around the Safe Haven Law, and for recognizing the importance of strengthening this life-saving legislation and I urge my colleagues to support this Bill. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir, and you did move adoption, correct?

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Correct.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you. Representative Case of the 63rd, you have the floor, sir.

REP. CASE (63RD):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I thank the good Representative for speaking on it. Through you, Mr. Speaker, a few questions to the Representative.

REP. ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Currey, please prepare yourself. Representative Case, please proceed.

REP. CASE (63RD):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and through you, it was a little bit hard to hear, but the changes in this Bill makes some minor changes to DCF in the timeframe on how long they have to go find the birth parents; is that correct? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Currey.

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Yes, that is correct. They should identify one within one business day, assuming that one is available. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Case.

REP. CASE (63RD):

And through you, Mr. Speaker. This also protects the birth parents so that if they are found within a certain period that they -- it also protects the birth parents and it protects the foster parents so that there is less of a chance of them being returned, the child being returned to the birth parents after they've gone through the Safe Haven process. Through you, Mr. Speaker. Is that correct?

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Currey.

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. That is correct.

REP. CASE (63RD):

Well, and I thank you, Mr. Speaker. Just a few observations here. This did pass out of Human Services unanimously. I'd like to thank Representative Currey for his work on this. Representative Sawyer of, previously of our side, have worked really hard on this and I thank Representative Currey for taking this over. Right after the press conference you had, there was a situation in the town of Burlington that, you know, we followed very closely between myself and Pam Sawyer. So, this is very important. We're saving some lives and I ask my people to please pass this out and help out some more babies. Thank you.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir. Representative Wood of the 141st, you have the floor, Madam.

REP. WOOD (141ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And I too stand in very strong support of this Bill and congratulate Representative Currey, congratulate might be too soon. In another three minutes, we can congratulate you and the Connecticut House Bills for all of your work on this as well as Representative Case. It does strengthen the Bill we did a couple of years ago now, and it is one of those things we can all feel good about what we've done in here to help parents who do not feel ready to care for a child, give that child to a hospital. So, I stand in support and encourage my colleagues to do the same. Thank you.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, Madam. Representative Orange of the 48th, you have the floor, Madam.

REP. ORANGE (48TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, good morning to you, Mr. Speaker. And I too rise in strong support of this Bill and I was here when then Representative Ann Dandrow introduced this Bill. And she was just so pleased when it passed and I think that she would be smiling down on us today, knowing that we have enhanced this Bill. So, I urge support. Thank you, sir.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, Madam. Representative Fishbein of the 90th, you have the floor, sir.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I just had a few questions for the proponent, if I may.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Currey, please prepare yourself. Representative Fishbein, please proceed.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. A question was posed from Representative Case with regard to DCF finding the birth parents within a day. And I don't see that in the Bill. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Currey.

REP. CURREY (11TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I believe that the Ranking Member was referring to identifying a prospective adoptive family that the child would be placed with and having DCF do that within one business day, assuming one is available. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Fishbein.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, perhaps with the noise I couldn't hear the question. I also rise in support of the Bill. So, thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir. Will you remark further? Will you remark further on the Bill before us? If not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Members take your seats. The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Have all the members voted?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will please announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill No. 7121.

Total Number of Voting 141

Necessary for Passage 71

Those Voting Yea 141

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 8

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] Representative MacLachlan, for what reason do you rise?

REP. MACLACHLAN (35TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I'd like my vote to be cast in the affirmative for the Bill, please.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much, Representative, the transcript will --

REP. MACLACHLAN (35TH):

Thank you, sir.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 266.

CLERK:

Calendar No. 266, House Bill No. 7062, AN ACT CONCERNING THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE CONNECTICUT-MADE DESIGNATION. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Commerce.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Simmons, please.

REP. SIMMONS (144TH):

Mr. Speaker, I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and the passage of the Bill.

REP. TERCYAK (26TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the Bill. Representative Simmons, you have the floor.

REP. SIMMONS (144TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The Bill we have before us today requires the Department of Economic and Community Development to create a Connecticut-made logo designation, so that businesses that manufacture the majority of their products in Connecticut can utilize this logo. We're very excited about this Bill because we think it's a great way to showcase the many wonderful products that are made locally in Connecticut as well as to encourage companies to make their products locally, to support local jobs, and strengthen our local economy. It passed the Commerce Committee unanimously, and I urge my colleagues to support this Bill. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much, Representative. Will you remark further on this Bill? Representative Yaccarino of the 87th, you have the floor, sir.

REP. YACCARINO (87TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and it's great to see you up there. Really the Good Chair of Commerce described the Bill accurately. The only suggestion I would like to make is that what Representative Camillo from the 151st, was to have a competition and hopefully the DCD will create a competition to showcase our great Connecticut-made businesses, great companies, great heritage. So, it's a simple Bill, but I think it's an important Bill. And also, the CBIA, actually supports this to showcase the great things we have in Connecticut. So, thank you, and thank the good Chair. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Fishbein of the 90th District.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I join my fellow Representatives in support of this and I think the opportunity to have a contest is a great thing to engage our students. I'm very active with our art students at our high schools and I know that some of them can come up with a great logo here. So, you know, perhaps, you know, I see this passing the House, perhaps it gets to the Senate we could work together on some sort of provision and guidelines for a contest. So, I would urge that to happen. So, thank you, Mr. Speaker.

REP. TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on the Bill? Will you remark further on the Bill? Representative Simmons, any further remarks?

REP. SIMMONS (144TH):

Nothing further. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

REP. TERCYAK (26TH):

Then if not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take your seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

REP. TERCYAK (26TH):

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will please announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill No. 7062.

Total Number of Voting 144

Necessary for Passage 73

Those Voting Yea 144

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 5

REP. TERCYAK (26TH):

[Gavel] The Bill passes. Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 100.

CLERK:

On page 7, Calendar No. 100, House Bill No. 7103, AN ACT CONCERNING THE RETIREMENT AGE OF GOVERNOR'S FOOT GUARD MUSICIANS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Veterans' Affairs.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Hennessy, please.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the Bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The question is acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Hennessy, you have the floor.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, what this Bill does is extend the retirement age for musicians in the Governor's Foot Guard. This is an Agency Bill and the reason why they're requesting this extension is because they're having a hard time keeping the ranks filled with competent musicians. These are not part of the chain of command, which is why the General has decided that they can have an extension as opposed to everyone. This is a historical organization, incorporated in 1788, and we want to do our part to make sure that they're functioning in the State of Connecticut.

I urge the House to vote for it. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Hennessy. Will you remark further? Representative Ferraro of the 117th, please, sir, you have the floor.

REP. FERRARO (117TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And through you, Mr. Speaker, just a question of clarification to the proponent of the Bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Yes, sir.

REP. FERRARO (117TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker, for purposes of clarification. This Bill also changes the rank names to specifically designate them as pay grades instead. And basically, this was done to increase the transparency. If the proponent of the Bill would speak to that increase in transparency, I would really appreciate it. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Hennessy, please.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. So, it's kind of confusing that we have different branches of the military and they all have different names, but they all share the same pay ranks. So, when I was in the Army, I was a Sergeant, and I was an E5. Now, in the Navy, an E5 is Petty Officer, Second Class. And you wouldn't know that, but if you know their pay grade, you know generally, you know, where they are in the ranking. It can be quite confusing. A Colonel in the Army is a Captain in the Navy, and that's an O6. Whereas a Captain in the Army is an O3, and in the Navy, is a Lieutenant. So, unless you know, and most people don't, a pay grade is so much clearer to know who we're talking about. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Sergeant.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Ferraro.

REP. FERRARO (117TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and through you. So, this Bill really accomplishes two things. It changes the rank name to the pay grade to increase the transparency and eliminate the confusion, and it also extends the age from 64 to 70 for musicians because the problem has been that maintaining or retaining quality musicians has been a problem. And so, this addresses both of those issues and for that reason I urge my colleagues to support the Bill. Thank you very much.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further? Representative O'Neill of the 69th District, please.

REP. O'NEILL (69TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And I think everybody on the Committee, especially the Ranking Member and the Chair will be happy to know I do not have an amendment to this Bill. However, I do have a couple of quick questions. I guess I never realized that the Governor's Foot Guard was paid or at least that's the impression I'm getting from the conversation that we are having. So, my question, through you, Mr. Speaker, to the Chair, is the Governor's Foot Guard compensated financially by the state, through you?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Hennessy, please.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Well, the answer is the potential is there, but they very rarely are. Not in a very long time has there been any compensation, but the potential is there because they are, in fact, members of the military as opposed to if they were volunteers, there could be no re-compensation, nor could their orders be given to them. So, through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative O'Neill.

REP. O'NEILL (69TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I think that answered my question because the conversation about the ranks and so for the conjured up in my mind the notion that this was a part of the military organization and as such might be compensated. So, thank you, Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the clarification.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on the Bill? Will you remark further on this Bill? Representative Sredzinski of the 112th, please.

REP. SREDZINSKI (112TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. A couple of questions to the proponent of the Bill, through you, if I may?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Yes, Representative. Representative Hennessy, please be prepared for a question. Yes, Representative, we're ready.

REP. SREDZINSKI (112TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Thank you very much. So, I just had a quick question on the military establishment here as far as the Foot Guard versus the Horse Guard. I represent part of Newtown and in Newtown, we have one of the Horse Guard Units in the State of Connecticut, and I was wondering if any consideration was given by the Veterans Committee to increase the ages of the volunteers at the Horse Guard? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Hennessy.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. First of all, let's be clear that these are members of the military. There seems to be some confusion over that. They are volunteers in the sense that they volunteer to be members of the military, but they are not like volunteers like you and I going out and volunteering to clean up a beach or something along that line. So, as far as extending the age to others outside of the military musicians, the General is very clear that we must maintain the same standards throughout the military and the reason for that is that anyone outside of this functionality of being a musician, can be called to orders to perform possibly physically arduous duties and that is the reason why we do not extend the age to others outside of this select group of musicians. I hope I answered your question. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Sredzinski.

REP. SREDZINSKI (112TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I thank the Chairman for his answers. Being somewhat familiar with the Horse Guard because again I represent Newtown, I do know that there are volunteers that do numerous different tasks at the Horse Guard. Some volunteers feed the horses. Some of the volunteers take care of the horses. Some of them are involved in the marketing. Some take a deep dive into the finances to see where more money can be saved or where it can be fundraised. So, we need to make sure that we're supporting all of our volunteers at this organization. And while I do understand that technically this is a military organization, we all understand that the role of these organizations, the Horse Guard and the Foot Guard are primarily ceremonial. And I don't believe that the Horse Guard or the Foot Guard would be called out to perform any specific military action. I may be incorrect in that, but I believe that they're mostly ceremonial.

So, although I do agree with this Bill, I will be supporting this Bill because I believe that is the right thing to do. I wish we took this opportunity to extend it to all volunteers of the Horse Guard and Foot Guard so that we can continue the tradition that we have established here in the State of Connecticut. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Hoydick of the 120th District, please, you have the floor, ma'am.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. A few questions through you to the proponent of the Bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The proponent signals he's prepared. It's your floor, Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I'm curious to understand what the difference is between a volunteer and someone who is a member of one of the guards, Foot or Horse; and if in fact they are a volunteer, can they resign at any time or do they have to fulfil their military obligation for a time period? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Hennessy, please.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. The way I understand it is that these members that this Bill is being directed to are, in fact, members of the National Guard, in which they can and do, in fact, receive orders to appear and to perform and they are very specific. This is the military. And if they were not members of the military, they would not be eligible to receive these orders, nor would they be covered under insurance, nor would the military be able to deal with them as far as potential discipline problem or whatever because a volunteer pretty much is, you know, they are without any constraints. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I thank the kind Chairman for his answers. Let me ask this a different way. If I am a member of the Horse or the Foot Guard, may I resign my position at any time? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Hennessy, please.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

I'm sorry. Through you, Mr. Speaker, could the good Representative repeat her question.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

[Gavel] The questions are not being heard, that's slowing down the answering. If people would please take their conversations outside. Please, Representative Hoydick, you still have the floor. Would you please repeat your question?

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Of course, Mr. Speaker. If I am a member of the Horse Guard or the Foot Guard, may I resign my position at any time? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Hennessy.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. I'm not really sure. I don't believe that they have like an enlistment of X-amount of years. I think it's more of an extended thing. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I thank the good Chairman for his answer to that, which is back to my point. And I think the same point that Representative Sredzinski was endeavoring to make, that these people that are participating, the Foot Guard and the Horse Guard, while mostly ceremonial, are participating on the basis that they choose to, not that they have to. And in that case, to me they seem like volunteers. So, my follow-up question to the good Chairman of the Veterans Committee is, the Bill that is put forward seems very similar to another Bill that was proposed within the last six years or so regarding extending the retirement age of the Horse Guard. First, was the Commandant, which was denied, as I understand the Committee had a public hearing. Thank you, Chairman, for the public hearing, but the Bill didn't move forward because the General wasn't inclined to extend the retirement age of the Commandant of the Horse Guard.

So, a long way around this question is, why has the General decided and the Committee decided not to pursue the extension of the retirement date for the Foot Guard, the musicians of the Foot Guard? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Hennessy, please.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. I completely understand that there is confusion over this issue and a certain, you know, hardship over previous legislation. This is an issue that General Martin is concerned with that we, as civilians, can't appreciate and it's kind of where do you draw the line? Is it a military organization or is it not? It can't be both. It's got to be one of the other. It's a militia, just to be clear. And it's kind of a slippery slope type of issue in which General Martin discerns that it has to be recognized as a militia and that it has to abide by the standards. He is asking for an exemption specifically for musicians because their retention of musicians is hurting and this would give them support. But he's quite clear that any other changes to retirement age, whether it's in the militia or the National Guard, should not be honored by this body. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And again, I thank the kind gentleman for his answers. So, in order, as I understand what he is saying, in order to encourage the participation of musicians in the Foot Guard, they are -- this Bill proposes to extend the retirement age. And due to that hardship, that they cannot get recruits, they need to keep the people that are committed and volunteering at this point in the ranks. So, I understand that. Through you, Mr. Speaker, another question to the proponent, do either of the Horse Guards have any difficulty or hardship retaining membership? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Hennessy.

REP. HENNESSY (127TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. I'm really not aware of the answer to that. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Is it possible to ask one of the other Representatives who the Horse Guards are in their District, to answer that question? Would I be allowed to do that?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

If there is a Representative here from the District who would care to answer, yes, you would be allowed to ask a Representative from the District.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Mr. Speaker, I'd like to ask the Representative from the 112th to answer that question. Through you, Mr. Speaker. Is the second Horse Guard --

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Sredzinski, do you accept the question from Representative Hoydick?

REP. SREDZINSKI (112TH):

Yes, Mr. Speaker, I do.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Hoydick, now you have the floor.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Through you, Mr. Speaker. Is the second Horse Guard having difficulty retaining volunteers and recruits?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Sredzinski.

REP. SREDZINSKI (112TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. That's an excellent question. The answer is, yes.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, sir. Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and thank you, Representative from the 112th. Mr. Speaker, my point is that it's not just the musicians of the Governor's Foot Guard that we need to support, but it's all of our militia services. And one of the ways that we could do this would be by extending the retirement age of all those that serve. As you know, if you look on the system, there are several amendments to this Bill; none of which we decided to call at the request of the Chairman, and we will honor that request. But we hope in the next session that he and the Committee would consider entertaining extending this retirement age for all of those participating. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Hoydick. Will you remark further? Will you remark further? If not, will staff and guests, please come to the well of the House. Will members please take your seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Thank you, Representative. Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will please announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill No. 7103.

Total Number of Voting 145

Necessary for Passage 73

Those Voting Yea 145

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 4

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 2222.

CLERK:

On page 53, House Calendar 222, Substitute House Bill No. 7157, AN ACT IMPLEMENTING THE PROPOSALS OF THE OFFICE OF EARLY CHILDHOOD. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Public Health.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Fleischmann.

REP. FLEISCHMANN (18TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I move acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Fleischmann, you have the floor.

REP. FLEISCHMANN (18TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The measure before us was, as its title implies, put forward by the Office of Early Childhood. It's got some basic proposals relating to exemptions from immunization requirements, licensing for childcare facilities and state grants for school readiness programs that reflect best practices. It was voted unanimously out of the Education Committee and when referred to Public Health, supported unanimously there.

So, it's a simple straight-forward good policy measure that has had bipartisan support to date and I hope the same will continue today. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on this Bill? Will you remark further on this Bill? Representative Candelora of the 86th District, please.

REP. CANDELORA (86TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I think I generally support the notions of this Bill and just had one question, I think for the proponent, if I may.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The Representative is prepared. You have the floor, Representative Candelora, please.

REP. CANDELORA (86TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In lines 29 through 36, we're sort of creating this temporary exemption to allow children to be enrolled in a daycare; am I correct? Through you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Fleischmann.

REP. FLEISCHMANN (18TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Yes, it's an exemption not to exceed 90 days. Through you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Candelora.

REP. CANDELORA (86TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And I see this limited to a certain type of individual and that would be those defined as homeless youths under our federal definition. Is there a reason why we're just limiting that exemption to homeless youth? Through you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Fleischmann.

REP. FLEISCHMANN (18TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Yes, and I thank my good colleague for the question. The children who are designated in this section are children who may have great difficulty obtaining timely immunizations because of their homeless status. Children who are properly housed and living with families should get their immunizations before the start of school for their safety and the safety of other children. And what the Office of Early Childhood said to us is that absent this legislation before us today, we were creating a barrier to homeless children matriculating in school. Through you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Candelora, please.

REP. CANDELORA (86TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And finally, I know we've had definitions under federal law that deal with the unaccompanied minor versus homeless youth. I think the unaccompanied minor is more specific, which basically says they don't have a parent or guardian that could be found; whereas, this is a broader definition of just the homeless child. And am I correct, in this situation, whether or not the child has a guardian or parent is irrelevant in order to obtain this waiver? Through you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Fleischmann.

REP. FLEISCHMANN (18TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Yes, that's my reading as well. And I think the rationale relates to the challenges that even an intact family that is homeless might have in getting immunizations on the exact time schedule that they would like. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Candelora.

REP. CANDELORA (86TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I don't have any further questions. I do think generally we're seeing Bills that come through the legislature that sort of mandate vaccinations, which I generally have concern about for a lot of different reasons. I'm glad that we are providing an accommodation to avoid the barrier to entry for these children into our daycares. I'd also suggest, I think that there is generally a barrier to entry for any families that believe that vaccinations are dangerous and avoid having them and want to enroll their unvaccinated children into school.

I think this is a step toward maybe that we will realize as a state that it is okay to enroll unvaccinated children. So, I do support the underlying Bill. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Lavielle of Wilton, please, you have the floor.

REP. LAVIELLE (143RD):

Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. This is as the good Chair of Education has said, the agency Bill for the Office of Early Childhood. I have only just one brief question for the Chair, if I may, Mr. Speaker. And my question is just to confirm that as I read the fiscal note that there is, because there is some balance and a possible increase and a possible savings, that we can pretty much consider any financial impact from this Bill to be a wash; am I correct? Through you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Fleischmann, please.

REP. FLEISCHMANN (18TH):

Thank you. Through you, Mr. Speaker. Yes.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Lavielle.

REP. LAVIELLE (143RD):

Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I thank the good Chair for his answers and I will be supporting the Bill. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Will you remark further on this Bill? Representative Wilms of the 142nd District, please, sir.

REP. WILMS (142ND):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I have a question, through you, to the Chair. My question is with regard to the vaccinations. There is still, if I read the Bill correctly, for the homeless children, they still are required, is it not true, but there is a 90-day-window for them to become vaccinated; is that correct?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Fleischmann, please.

REP. FLEISCHMANN (18TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Yes.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Fleischmann. Back to you, Representative Wilms.

REP. WILMS (142ND):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and thank you, Mr. Chair, for answering my questions. Just for the record, I'm a strong supporter of vaccinations and I'm glad to see that these will continue. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, sir. Will you remark further? Will you remark further? If not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. The members please take your seats. The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will please announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 7157.

Total Number of Voting 145

Necessary for Passage 73

Those Voting Yea 144

Those Voting Nay 1

Absent and Not Voting 4

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

[Gavel] The Bill passes. Are there any announcements or introductions? Any announcements or introductions? Representative Cook, for what reason do you rise?

REP. COOK (65TH):

Good afternoon, Mr. Speaker, nice to see you up there today. Mr. Speaker, Representative Case, Representative Ohler and myself would like to welcome the Vogel-Wetmore School 5th grade class. They are upstairs interest he galley watching us today. And I would like to recognize Mr. Parkhouse, Mrs. Boccio, Mrs. Svetz-Juliano, and Mrs. Palladino. And Mrs. Palladino is actually our good great, Daniel Palladino's mother. So, I would like to welcome our students here from Torrington and give them a great big welcome. Thank you very much. [Applause]

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much, Representative. Representative Devlin of the 134th, for what reason do you rise?

REP. DEVLIN (134TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, I rise for a moment of personal privilege to introduce to the Chamber a very special young man, who is here on behalf of the Alzheimer's Association, Max Rosenberg of Fairfield. Max was also here last year. And last year, he raised $ 7,000 for the Alzheimer's Association, but not settling for that, this year Max has already raised $ 15,000. And he is still collecting donations from all of our generous members. So, feel free to contribute as well. But please join me in congratulating and welcoming Max to the Chamber. [Applause]

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Thank you very much for your service, Max. Representative Candelaria of the 95th District, for what reason do you rise, sir?

REP. CANDELARIA (95TH):

Mr. Speaker, a point of personal privilege.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

You may proceed.

REP. CANDELARIA (95TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, it gives me a great honor to introduce to the Chamber Edwardo Gonzalez, who is the General Consulate of Peru, who has been appointed here in the office in Hartford on April 1st. So, I want to welcome him to our state and also, I'd like to ask my colleagues to give him a warm welcome. Thank you. [Applause]

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Any other introductions or announcements? No, then we will return to the business of the day. Will the Speaker please call Calendar No. 332?

CLERK:

On page 38, Calendar No. 332, House Bill No. 6008, AN ACT ESTABLISHING AN INDEPENDENT CONSUMER ADVOCATE FOR METROPOLITAN DISTRICT OF HARTFORD COUNTY CONSUMERS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Planning and Development.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap of West Hartford, please.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Good afternoon, Mr. Speaker. I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage, please.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The question is acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the Bill. Representative Slap, you have the floor.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This Bill is about protecting consumers and protecting taxpayers. So, I would like to call an amendment that the Clerk is in possession of, it's LCO 6254. I would ask for a leave to summarize, as well.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Will the Clerk please call LCO No. 6254, which will be designated House Amendment Schedule A.

CLERK:

LCO No. 6254, designated House Amendment Schedule A, and introduced by Representative Lemar, Senator Cassano, and Senator Logan.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The representative seeks leave of the Chamber to summarize the amendment. Is there objection to summarization? Is there objection? Hearing none, Representative Slap, you may proceed with summarization.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. There are eight member towns of the MDC, I'm going to read them off briefly, so we all know which towns we're discussing; West Hartford, East Hartford, Bloomfield, Hartford, Newington, Rocky Hill, Wethersfield, and Windsor. Last fall, they were dealt with a real challenge because here was the possibility, a message was sent that one of those member towns might be unable to pay its share of the ad valorem and be able to really pay what it owed to the MDC.

So, the other member towns were left scrambling and had to adopt reserve payments. So, in some cases that was nearly $ 2-million dollars set aside very suddenly for their municipal budgets. So, we want to make sure that member towns are not forced into similar positions if another member town in the MDC is unable to pay its bill. And so, the amendment really gives the MDC some flexibility in case there is a revenue emergency and it really does that in three ways.

First, right now, the MDC is only able to adopt a supplemental budget if there is an operational emergency, but not when it comes to revenue. So, this would change that and allow it to adopt supplemental budget if there was a revenue, a sudden revenue shortfall.

Second, it would allow the MDC to utilize TANS or tax anticipation notices. Right now, the MDC is able to do that, but only up to six months. This would extend the ability to borrow short-term from six months to three years and in some cases, that would be enough to allow the MDC and a member town that could not pay its bills to devise a payment plan, right.

And the last part is that it would instruct the Office of Policy and Management, OPM, to intercept state grants to a municipality if that municipality, right, did not pay its ad valorem tax to the MDC. The OPM could intercept that grant and redirect it to the MDC. What this would do, the combination of those three tools, those options, would be really to help protect taxpayers in member towns, should one of the towns not pay.

So, I think it's a common sense and a very reasonable solution to a problem that we encountered as early as just a few months ago. And I do urge adoption of the amendment.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further? Representative Zawistowski of the 61st District, you have the floor, Ma'am.

REP. ZAWISTOWSKI (61ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This amendment offers a few technical changes and also, as stated by the proponent of the Bill, offers some protection through some of the MDC member towns in the event that one or more of the towns would default.

It's a friendly amendment and I do urge my colleagues to support it. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Baram of the 15th District, please.

REP. BARAM (15TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I too rise in support of the amendment. This will definitely help the residents and taxpayers of the MDC district towns because it creates a system where if a member community defaults, there will be an intercept of any state grants that will be used to pay the obligations of the defaulting community. And this avoids a lot of legal hassle. It's a seamless, very expedited method of getting payment and assuring that the budget of the MDC is kept intact and I would urge support.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Will you remark further? Representative Srinivasan of the 31st District, please.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Good afternoon, Mr. Speaker, good to see you there. Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Through you, Mr. Speaker, to the proponent of the amendment, does this have any impact on the non-member MDC towns? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Slap, please.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, thank you, through you. No, it would not. The underlying Bill, which we'll discuss in a few minutes would impact non-member towns, and I look forward to addressing that. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Will you remark further? Will you remark further on the amendment before us? If not, I will try your minds. All those in favor, please signify by saying aye. All those opposed, nay? The ayes have it and the amendment is adopted. Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? Representative Slap, please, you have the floor.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Thank you. Yes, I'd like to speak now on the underlying Bill. And I do want to thank my colleague, Representative Baram, for his leadership on this. He's been at it a little while. And I can speak from personal experience that I hear often from constituents about the need to strengthen trust and really repair, in some cases kind of a broken relationship between customers and at least in my district and parts of West Hartford, I know in other towns in the MDC. And I think that this Bill, which would establish an independent consumer advocate would go a long way towards strengthening relationship that the MDC has with its customers.

So, briefly, I'll just describe what it would do. As I mentioned, it would establish a new independent consumer advocate. The advocate would be selected by the Consumer Counsel's Office. The advocate would be accountable to the Consumer Counsel's Office and that office would only, it would be the only who would be able to terminate the independent consumer advocate.

I would say that this person would also need to be an attorney with some experience and appropriate experience in public utility law. They would be required in the statute to have quarterly reports to each of the member towns. They would also be required to hold an annual public hearing as well. And I see this position is one that would be able to advocate, of course, on behalf of consumers if they had issues with their Bill. If they had issues with the quality of water. If they had issues with process. And would really be able to highlight certain things that they think might be of concern to residents not only in the member towns, but also in the four other towns, which are at least party served by the MDC, and those towns are Farmington, Glastonbury, East Granby, and South Windsor.

I am gratified that this is something, this proposal is something that the MDC agrees with. We've worked in good partnership with them on this language. We've also worked with the environmental advocates as well, who support this. So, I would urge my colleagues to support this Bill as well. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Zawistowksi of the 61st District.

REP. ZAWISTOWSKI (61ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This is a very positive Bill. I particularly appreciate the Consumer Counsel aspects of it. MDC has been very difficult for some of the customers to contact and to get answers. This will enable them to do that further. And as amended, it will protect the towns from any potential defaults from any of the other member towns. And I do urge my colleagues to support it. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further? Representative Vail of the 52nd District, you have the floor, sir.

REP. VAIL (52ND):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. If I may, a question to the proponent of the Bill?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, you may.

REP. VAIL (52ND):

Thank you. I'm just curious. Who is going to pay for this new position? Is there a fiscal note that will be added to the state budget? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Well, thank you --

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap, you have the floor now.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Thank you. Through you, Mr. Speaker. There is not a fiscal note that will be added to the state budget. The MDC will be paying for this and I know the MDC had plans to hire one, a consumer advocate on its own, so it's not going to be an additional charge for MDC consumers, either. And it does, I should say, model another setup in terms of the South Central Regional Water Authority. They have a similar position as well. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Vail.

REP. VAIL (52ND):

Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Storms of the 60th District.

REP. STORMS (60TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise to support this Bill. I represent one of the member towns, Windsor, and I believe this Bill will improve the communications awareness for our taxpayers and the customers of the MDC. There have been some issues effecting information back to the member towns, and I believe this Bill tremendously adds to that process, and I thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Tweedie of the 13th District, please, sir.

REP. TWEEDIE (13TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And a question to the proponent of the Bill, through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Slap, please be prepared. Through you, no, Representative Tweedie, your turn.

REP. TWEEDIE (13TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And would -- understand this agreement, would a non-member town have this representation available to them the same as a member town would from the advocate? Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, they would. This consumer advocate would serve consumers in all the towns that are served by the MDC.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Tweedie.

REP. TWEEDIE (13TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And this would cover water quality as well as pricing questions for the non-member towns? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, yes, it would.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Tweedie.

REP. TWEEDIE (13TH):

I thank the proponent of the Bill and thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Baram of the 15th District, please, sir.

REP. BARAM (15TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise in support of this Bill and I first would like to thank my colleagues, Representative Derek Slap, and Senator Beth Bye for all the help and teamwork that we all put into negotiate this Bill. This really is a win-win. It's a win for the municipalities that are members of the MDC district. It's a win for the MDC district itself. And I want to allude to and thank the advocates from Bloomfield and throughout the region, who were very, very concerned about transparency and dissemination of information. With the creation of this consumer advocate's position, which will be an attorney who is a member of the Bar Association, and has some background in utility and regulatory law, I'm confident that this person, who will be chosen and selected by the Office of the Consumer Counsel, will represent our consumers and our residents in an excellent fashion, attending meetings, disseminating information, alerting us to any policy issues that should it be -- or encourage public engagement and debate. And I think that this will serve well not only the MDC district but the State of Connecticut. In fact, there is one other regional water district that also has a consumer advocate. And I understand that it has worked very, very well, also.

So, I would like to urge my colleagues to support this legislation. Again, thank all the people who helped negotiate this Bill and on behalf of the residents of Bloomfield and the other member towns, express our appreciation to this Chamber for passing something that will promote transparency and truly open up the process so that all information is available to all members of the public. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Srinivasan of the 31st, for the first time on the Bill in front of us. Thank you, sir.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Through you, Mr. Speaker, just a few questions to the proponent of the Bill as amended for clarification.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

He's ready, sir.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker, I just want to be clear that this advocate would be an advocate for both member towns as well as non-member towns? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, this independent consumer advocate would advocate for consumers who are served by the MDC both in member and non-member towns. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker, as the good Representative said, we have also heard a lot of concerns, questions raised by our consumers on Glastonbury and other non-member towns. So, when they do have such concerns or questions of their Bills, so on and so forth, would this be the avenue where they would be able to reach out and have an opportunity for their questions to be looked at in a transparent way and answer. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap, please.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, thank you, through you. Yes, this would be a very appropriate way to address those concerns or questions reaching out to this consumer advocate. Yes, through you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. It is clear that there was no additional charge to the member towns for having this advocate. Through you, Mr. Speaker. Will there be any charge at all to the non-member towns to have this advocate? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Thank you, yes. No, there will not be an additional charge to either member or non-member towns. I should say that the ceiling for funding for this, in the first year is $ 70,000 and subsequent years it will be $ 50,000. That will be paid for by the MDC and, as I mentioned earlier, the MDC was planning on hiring somebody to fill this role anyways. So, I do not see this as additional charge for consumers at all. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. In the appointment of such an advocate, whose voice or voices will be heard before they decide as who is going to be serving as the advocate? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Yes, the Consumer Counsel will select the advocate and, as we mentioned before, there are certain criteria that must be followed and it will be a two-year term and then it will be up to the Consumer Counsel to either reappoint the existing consumer advocate or select a new one. And I do think it's important again to mention that this position is not one that can be, you know, terminated by the MDC or discipline and this position is really accountable to first and foremost, obviously to consumers, but in this case the Consumer Counsel's Office. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. I want to be just clear. It is only the Consumer Counsel that has a say on who is going to be chosen as the advocate and not A. , the member town, not member town, non-member town, or the MDC? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Slap, please.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, that is correct. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. This $ 70,000 in year one and $ 50,000 in year two, if the good Representative could give us a rationale as to how those numbers were derived? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, thank you, Mr. Speaker. We really modeled this proposal on the South Central Regional Water Authority's Model and looked at the level of funding that was needed to sustain this position there and we feel like this is certainly adequate. And, you know, it is possible that the MDC could allow for more revenue to be spent on this, but we think that coming in at this cap is, you know, is a reasonable place. And the $ 70,000 in the first year is to really accommodate additional time could be spent setting up the office and getting this position underway. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

And through you, Mr. Speaker. My final question, this office of this advocate and the legal profession, is it just a person or is going to be a fully staffed office, comprising of more than one person? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Thank you. There will just be one person.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. So, this one person is going to be responsible for member towns, non-member towns, all the concerns, all the questions, all will be funneled through this one person, who is that one-person office? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much, Representative. Representative Slap, were you able to hear the question?

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, I was. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, while certainly that would be in their purview, I would say that they, meaning the independent consumer advocate would not be the only person who would be responding to issues that have been brought up by consumers. So, there are commissioners and representatives in each town. They certainly should be serving that role as well. And there is staff at the MDC, you know, that could certainly handle, you know, a question about a Bill. But the point of this is really to establish a position, an independent position, somebody who can add transparency and more accountability to the process; especially when people have concerns, not only about their Bill, but also about things that might have, let's say, an environmental impact and you know, there was a project that Representative Baram kind of obliquely referred to that in his town that people had a lot of concern about. And I think that's a great example of how this position could really add value. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I want to thank the good Representative for his answers. I appreciate that. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Will you remark further? Representative Byron of the 27th District, please.

REP. BYRON (27TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise for a question for the proponent of the Bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. You may.

REP. BYRON (27TH):

It's good to see you. I understand that the term of the bonding goes from six months to three years, right?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Slap, please.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, thank you, Mr. Speaker. Yes, the TANS are anticipation notices. We would expand them or allow the MDC to utilize from anywhere from six months, which they can do now, but we would extend that to three years.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Byron.

REP. BYRON (27TH):

Thank you for answering that question. Now, what would happen if during those three-year-terms -- I guess, I have some concern that by extending that term from six months to three years, that it opens up the possibility that the MDC could default on a payment and what type of responsibilities would the eight-member town, eight membership of the MDC, therefore have, if the MDC defaulted on a bond payment during that three-year term?-

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yeah, thank you. The tax anticipation notices or the TANS are really meant as a bridge, as a stop-gap, in order to help with the MDC's cash flow and to, you know, perhaps set up a payment system with a member town that is not paid. But, you know, the tool that we're also giving the MDC to prevent from defaulting is this grant intercept from the state. And I think that's the thing that we need to focus on that would help certainly not only keep the MDC whole, but just as importantly keep member towns whole as well.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Byron.

REP. BYRON (27TH):

And how many times can that be rolled over?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

I would ask Representative to, if he could, to possibly expand on his question. I just want to make sure I understand.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative, of course. Representative Byron, are you able to expand --

REP. BYRON (27TH):

When a TAN --

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Byron, are you able to expand on your question, please?

REP. BYRON (27TH):

Yes, when a TAN matures, it should be able to roll over and how many times would that be rolled over?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Byron. Representative Slap, please.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Thank you. I do not believe there is a limit on the TANS being rolled over. I would point out again in kind of the last section of the Bill that OPM is required to make this revenue intercept. So, you know, I do not see, you know, TANS being rolled over indefinitely because we have something in the statute here that would require this revenue shortfall to be fixed. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Byron.

REP. BYRON (27TH):

And I thank the Representative for that answer and as one of the Representatives of the town of Newington, which is part of the eight-town membership of the MDC. I really appreciate the effort that you and the rest of the Committee put forward to really protecting the municipalities that a part of this eight-town membership of the MDC. So, it looks like a great Bill. I really appreciate your time and effort. And thank you so much. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Hoydick, for the first time on the Bill. You have the floor, Madam, please.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. A question through you to the proponent of the Bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Yes.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Would the good gentleman from West Hartford explain the association with these independent consumer advocate with the Office of Consumer Counsel?

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Slap, please.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes. If I understand the question correctly, and I hope that I do, it's why the Office of Consumer Counsel is the appointing authority and I would say that it's very appropriate; this office already has jurisdiction over utilities and, you know, certainly a similar type of things that are regulated and making sure that consumers are well represented. So, I think this is a very appropriate place for the appointing authority to land. And I hope that was the good Representative's question. If not, I'll try my best to answer it again. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Hoydick, please.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And you did just a fine job, Representative. Through you, Mr. Speaker. I understand and am in the same line of thinking as the Representative from West Hartford that it is an appropriate appointment from the Office of Consumer Counsel. I guess my follow-up question is, why wouldn't we utilize the Office of Consumer Counsel, instead of creating a new independent position? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Slap.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, thank you. Through you, Mr. Speaker. We are at a place where we cannot. I think this is well known, afford as a state, to add additional positions when at the same time we're trying to, you know, make spending reductions. So, we did not contemplate the possibility of adding a new position to that office. And we heard from the Consumer Counsel and their office that, you know, considering the, you know, the -- I wouldn't say ambitious, but considering the responsibilities of this position and how important it is, we didn't feel like it would be appropriate or responsible to tell them, you know, just figure out a way to do it within available resources.

So, we thought that this was a good place to land where we could make sure the disposition got the support that it needed without adding additional costs to the state budget. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Slap. Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And I understand that line of thinking, Mr. Speaker, but considering the Office of Consumer Counsel, if I remember correctly, is paid through electric rate payer dollars. And this position would be paid by the district, in essence from water rate payer dollars. I just thought there might be a possibility to combine the two using the MDC rate payer dollars to pay for the position, which is what I understand is happening, please correct me if I'm wrong, and then combine it with the Office of Consumer Counsel, so you would have greater resources. That's sort of a question and a statement in one. But through you, Mr. Speaker, if the good gentleman would share his thoughts, I'd appreciate it.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Hoydick, let's see how it goes. Representative Slap, through you, please.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. We did have many discussions with the administration and the Office of Consumer Counsel about this proposal and while I think that, you know, there is certainly some merits to my colleague's suggestion, probably a little bit too ambitious for this session, and I think we landed in a good place; one that is, you know, agreeable to all the parties involved. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I thank the kind gentleman for his answer and I will leave it at this. I think this is a good first step and maybe in the future, if we have to combine resources we can, if not, maybe we can pattern other independent counsels after this model. So, thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Hoydick. Now, from the first row and the 67th District, Representative Buckabee, you have the floor, sir.

REP. BUCKBEE (67TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I just have a simple question regarding this Bill, and I'm hoping our proponent of this Bill can help us out with that.

My concern is, of course, financial, that we all look at something like this as being outside of the municipal district and I know it's been addressed and questioned, but according to what I see from OFA, it does show a state impact of $ 20,000 and a municipal impact of zero.

So, I guess my concern would be for those of us outside this municipal district, where that would fall? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Buckbee. Representative Slap, please.

REP. SLAP (19TH):

Yes, through you, Mr. Speaker. Yeah, I don't anticipate any costs to the state. There would potentially cost to a member town, if that said member town was unable to pay its Bill, as you mentioned before with an intercept of the grant. We go from $ 50,000, which is in the underlying Bill and the amendment we go to $ 70,000 for the first year. So, I'm thinking perhaps maybe that's that delta of twenty, but again that's not paid for by the state, that is paid for by MDC. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Buckbee.

REP. BUCKBEE (67TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I mean, it's great if that's the intent of it to be laid out. My concern is that's how it's coming across from OFA that it does show a state impact of $ 20,000 and a municipal impact of none. So, I'm not sure if the question's been answered at this point, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Buckbee. Representative Genga of the 10th.

REP. GENGA (10TH):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. I stand in support of this Bill as amended because it improves the processes within the MDC, protects the individual municipalities financially and also adds transparency and trust for consumers. I urge the Body to adopt it. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much, Representative Genga. Will you remark further? Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? If not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take your seats, and the machine will be opened.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH)

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will please announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 6008, as amended by House A.

Total Number of Voting 145

Necessary for Passage 73

Those Voting Yea 145

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 4

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The Bill is Amended and passed. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 119.

CLERK:

On page 10, Calendar 119, House Bill No. 7002, AN ACT CONCERNING PERSONAL RISK INSURANCE RATE FILINGS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Insurance and Real Estate.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Scanlon, you have the floor, sir.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Good afternoon, Mr. Speaker. I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Scanlon, you have the floor.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This Bill simply extends the Sunset date for the Flex Rating Law for the Personal Risk Insurance from July 1, 2017 to July 1, 2021, and I urge my fellow colleagues to support this legislation.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Will you remark further on this Bill? Representative Sampson of the 80th District, you have the floor, sir.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and thanks to the Chairman, he did a good job of explaining the Bill before us. It's a very simple Bill. It just extends the Sunset date for a policy that would allow insurance carriers doing business in Connecticut to make adjustments, up or down, to their rates that they offer to their consumers without having to go through the entire rate filing process of the insurance department. It's a good Bill. I don't know that we need a Sunset at all, but I'm pleased to see that we're extending it out four years this time. And I urge my colleagues to vote in favor of the Bill. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on this Bill? Will you remark further on this Bill? Will you remark further on this Bill? If not, will staff and guests, please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take your seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will please announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 7002.

Total Number of Voting 144

Necessary for Passage 73

Those Voting Yea 144

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 5

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 394.

CLERK:

On page 47, Calendar 394, House Bill No. 7199, AN ACT ESTABLISHING A TASK FORCE TO PROMOTE EFFICIENCIES IN THE FILING OF HABEAS CORPUS MATTERS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Judiciary.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Tong of the 147th District, you have the floor, sir.

REP. TONG (147TH):

Good afternoon, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Good afternoon.

REP. TONG (147TH):

I move acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Tong, you have the floor.

REP. TONG (147TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This Bill creates a Task Force to study and promote efficiencies in Habeas Corpus matters. We have a state law, state court, Habeas docket, and Habeas process for inmates to apply and seek to vindicate their habeas rights. For as long as I've been on the Judiciary Committee, there has been an annual conversation about frivolous cases and the burden on multiple repeated frivolous Habeas filings that are a burden on the system, on prosecutors, public defenders, and on the Judiciary in general. And so, this would create a Task Force to study the issue and report back to the Judiciary Committee by the 1st of next year.

I want to thank the Minority Leader for bringing this Bill to the Judiciary Committee for its consideration, which passed the Committee, I believe, unanimously. And for those reasons, I urge support of this legislation. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on this Bill? Representative Rebimbas of the 70th District. Good afternoon, you have the floor, Ma'am.

REP. REBIMBAS (70TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and good afternoon to you as well. It's good to see you there. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of the legislation before us for all of the good things that the good Chairman just reiterated regarding it. This is a Task Force that's long overdue. It's one that certainly will be a great resource to, I believe, the general public. We are trying to be more efficient regarding these types of filings. And then I also would like to echo what was previously said by the Chairman, acknowledge and thank the leadership of our Minority Leader, Themis Klarides, for bringing this to our attention. Because not only are we looking at a way to be more efficient, but we want to make sure that victims and victim's families are always properly notified when it comes to these types of filings.

It's very important that they are notified because of the fact that they too have a voice and should be able to be properly notified to allow them to participate in the process.

So, I thank her for the leadership in this regard and I would encourage all of my colleagues to support the legislation before us.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much, Representative Rebimbas. Representative O'Dea of the 125th District, please, sir.

REP. O'DEA (125TH):

Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I just rise in support of this Bill. It looks quite familiar to some things have been proposed by many of us on the floor and I urge my colleagues to support it. Thank you very much.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative O'Dea. Will you remark further on this Bill? Will you remark further on this Bill? If not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take your seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will please announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 7199.

Total Number of Voting 143

Necessary for Passage 72

Those Voting Yea 143

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 6

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 341.

CLERK:

On page 39, Calendar 341, House Bill No. 6941, AN ACT ESTABLISHING A MUNICIPAL GRANT PORTAL. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Planning and Development.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Lemar, please.

REP. LEMAR (96TH):

Good afternoon, Mr. Speaker, good to see you today.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you.

REP. LEMAR (96TH):

Mr. Speaker, I move the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the Bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the Bill. Representative Lemar, you have the floor.

REP. LEMAR (96TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the Bill before us requires the Office of Policy and Management to create and maintain a grant, a portal, for the posting of all municipal grants. We believe this Bill will help streamline the grant application process from municipalities, create greater efficiencies and opportunities for all of our communities across the state. No longer will folks have to, you know, search requisite statutes in multiple departments. OPM shall develop within available appropriations this portal that all of our communities will be aware of and certainly help them to access the many grant opportunities we have available to them as a state. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Will you remark further on this Bill? Representative Zawistowski of the 61st District, please, Ma'am, you have the floor.

REP. ZAWISTOWSKI (61ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This is a great Bill. It will give municipalities the option of taking a look at the OPM site that would include all the information on state grants, including rules, opportunities, applications, so they don't have to look all over the place in different state agencies in order to get this information. It will really simplify things for municipalities.

This was unanimous in Planning and Development, and I do urge my colleagues to support it. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much, Representative. Will you remark further? Representative Staneski of the 119th District.

REP. STANESKI (119TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, good afternoon. I just wanted to rise in support of this Bill. I know at this point our Economic Community Development Director is watching, hi, Julie. This is a Bill that came from her request and the request of her industry in streamlining the grant process. And I really want to thank the good Chairman and Ranking Member for bringing this forward. As you know, I'm a Co-Sponsor, so I will be supporting this. Thank you very much.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Staneski. Will you remark further? Will you remark further on this Bill? Will you remark further on this Bill? If not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take your seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all members have voted, the machine will be locked, and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will please announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 6941.

Total Number of Voting 144

Necessary for Passage 73

Those Voting Yea 144

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 5

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 291.

CLERK:

On page 31, Calendar No. 291, House Bill No. 7185, AN ACT EXEMPTING LEASED MUNICIPAL PROPERTY FROM TAXATION. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Planning and Development.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Representative Lemar, you have the floor, please.

REP. LEMAR (96TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I move the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the Bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Lemar, you have the floor.

REP. LEMAR (96TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, simply this Bill expands the local property tax exemption from municipal property. It includes now real and personal property leased to a municipality that is used for a public purpose and located within the municipality. This update also includes motor vehicles that are leased to the municipality located within the municipality. It's a pretty straight-forward clarification of what is and is not tax exempt within a municipality. Thank you, Mr. Speaker, through you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Will you remark further on this Bill? Representative Zawistowski, please.

REP. ZAWISTOWSKI (61ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This Bill will reduce some administrative burden on the municipalities and eliminate the need for them to essentially cut checks to lessors of especially motor vehicles and especially have the money come back to themselves in terms of taxes. It will help the administration, take some of the load off the administration and the towns.

It was unanimous in Planning and Development Committee, a commonsense solution, and I recommend its passage. Thank you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on this Bill? Will you remark further on this Bill? Representative Fishbein of the 90th District, please, sir.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise in favor of this Bill as well. I'm happy to have co-sponsored it. You know, many times it's of more benefit to municipalities to perhaps lease something from a private owner and this incentivizes private owners to go to municipalities to offer these sort of arrangements, which could savor municipalities tax dollars going down the roads. So, I urge my fellow representatives to vote in favor. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on this Bill? Will you remark further on this Bill? Will you remark further on this Bill? If not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take your seats and the machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Have all members voted? Representative Lesser, for what reason do you rise?

REP. LESSER (100TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, there has been some seating rearrangements on this side of the aisle and I inadvertently cast a ballot for Representative Rovero. I would ask that the record be corrected.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much. Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all members have voted, if all members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. Representative Ritter, for what reason do you rise?

REP. RITTER (1ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would just ask in the Chamber, as we prepare for UConn day at 3: 15, we're trying to get some business done very, very quickly. If people could try to stay close, I know ice cream is tempting, but it will help us move our business more quickly. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, the Clerk will please announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 7185.

Total Number of Voting 143

Necessary for Passage 72

Those Voting Yea 143

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 6

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 288.

CLERK:

Calendar 288, House Bill 7169, AN ACT CONCERNING PSYCHOLOGY TECHNICIANS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Public Health.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Steinberg, please.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Good afternoon, Mr. Speaker. I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

The question is acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Steinberg, you have the floor.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This Bill makes some revisions and changes to the rules governing how Psychology Technicians can provide care under the supervision of a Psychologist. There are both technical revisions and some further controls that assure consumer protection. I have an Amendment, LCO No. 6150. I would ask the Clerk to please call the Amendment and that I be granted leave of the Chamber to summarize.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Will the Clerk please call LCO 6150, which would be designated House Amendment Schedule A.

CLERK:

House Amendment Schedule A, LCO No. 6150, offered by Representative Steinberg.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Steinberg, you have the floor, please.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This amendment makes the momentous change, adding the word “obtaining” and inserting the word “and,” in line 27, as you can imagine it does not have a profound impact overall and that's all I really have to say. I move adoption.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much, Representative. The question before the Chamber is adoption of House Amendment Schedule A. Will you remark on the amendment? Representative Srinivasan of the 31st, no. Will you remark on the amendment? Will you remark on the amendment? Let me try your mind, all of those in favor, please signify by saying aye. All those opposed, nay. The ayes have and the Amendment is adopted. Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? If not, will guests and staff please come to the well of the House. Will the members -- Representative Srinivasan, please, you have the floor.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Just a comment on the Bill as amended. Through you, Mr. Speaker, to the good proponent of the Bill. Yes, through you, Mr. Speaker. Through you, Mr. Speaker. So, this Psychology Technician that we are talking about, what is the supervision that we will have as far as these technicians are concerned? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Srinivasan. Representative Steinberg, to you, please.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, through you. The Psychology Technician can only operate under the supervision of a psychologist. The psychologist must be present at the facility and the psychologist cannot supervise more than three technicians at any given time. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Srinivasan, please.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. So, this psychologist has to be physically present and cannot be at a different location if there are multiple locations that these people practice in? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Yes, Mr. Speaker, through you.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

And through you, my final question is, the need for such Psychology Technicians, so where did this request come from that we need these technicians to be able to provide the services to our state? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Steinberg, please.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. As you may recall, a couple of years ago we did pass legislation, which recognized Psychology Technicians, which is in response to the growing need for a psychologist to be able to delegate certain provisions of simple services in that context. This Bill is simply making some modest revisions and does not subsequently change the underlying need for such Psychology Technicians, from what I understand, are continued to be needed to provide the services. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Steinberg. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

And through you, Mr. Speaker, the final responsibility is on the psychologist when he or she signs off on whatever the technician has provided them. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Is that a question, Representative Srinivasan?

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Who has the final responsibility --

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you very much, Representative. Representative Steinberg, please.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

The psychologist bears that responsibility. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you, Representative Steinberg. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I want to thank the good Representative for bringing up this Bill and I urge my colleagues to support this Bill as amended. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER TERCYAK (26TH):

Thank you. Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? Will you remark further on this Bill as amended? Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? If not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take your seats? The machine will be opened.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Have all members voted? Have all members voted? If all the members have voted, please check the board to ensure your vote has been properly cast. If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked. The Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 7169, as amended by House A.

Total Number of Voting 144

Necessary for Passage 73

Those Voting Yea 144

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 5

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The Bill is passed as amended. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call House Calendar 232.

CLERK:

On page 24, House Calendar 232, Substitute Bill No. 6483, AN ACT ESTABLISHING A TASK FORCE REGARDING THE IMPENDING SHORTAGE IN THE PSYCHIATRY WORKFORCE.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative McCarthy Vahey, you have the floor, Madam.

REP. MCCARTHY VAHEY (133RD):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the Bill.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you, Madam. The question is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. You have the floor.

REP. MCCARTHY VAHEY (133RD):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the Clerk has an Amendment, LCO No. 6263, I would ask the Clerk to please call the Amendment. And then I'd be granted leave of the Chamber to summarize.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Will the Clerk please call LCO 6263, which will be designated as House Amendment Schedule A.

CLERK:

House Amendment Schedule A, LCO No. 6263, offered by Representative Steinberg, Representative McCarthy Vahey.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The Representative seeks leave of the Chamber to summarize the Amendment. Is there objection to summarization? Is there objection to summarization? Seeing none, please proceed, Madam.

REP. MCCARTHY VAHEY (133RD):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the Amendment before us, which is a strike-all amendment establishes a taskforce regarding the impending shortage in the psychiatry workforce. Membership will include not only psychiatrists, but other mental health practitioners.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Amendment. Will you remark? Will you remark on the Amendment before us? If not, let me try your minds. All those in favor, please signify by saying aye. Those opposed nay. The ayes have it. The Amendment is adopted. [Gavel] Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? If not, staff and guests, please come to the well of the House. Members take your seats. The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Have all the members voted? Have all the members voted? If all the members have voted, please check the board to ensure that your vote has been properly cast. If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 6483, as amended by House A.

Total Number of Voting 143

Necessary for Passage 72

Those Voting Yea 122

Those Voting Nay 21

Absent and Not Voting 6

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The Bill passes as Amended. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call House Calendar 289.

CLERK:

On page 53, House Calendar 289, House Bill No. 7173, AN ACT CONCERNING THE APPOINTMENT OF ASSISTANT REGISTRARS OF VITAL STATISTICS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Government Administration and Elections.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg of the 136th, you have the floor, sir.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the Bill. Representative, you have the floor, sir.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. This Bill allows particularly large municipalities to increase the number of registrars they can employ to deal with processing of vital statistic information. This apparently has been a problem in some municipalities. There is currently a cap on a number of people employed and this would raise the cap so they could meet the immediate needs with regard to vital statistics. I move passage of the Bill.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir. Will you remark further? Will you remark further on the Bill that's before us? Representative Srinivasan of the 31st, you have the floor, sir.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Through you, Mr. Speaker. Just a quick question to the proponent of the Bill. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg, please prepare yourself. Please proceed, Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. There is no mandate that any town needs to have X-number of registrars, it's only if they chose to do so that gives them the -- allows them the capacity of doing so?

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

That is so. This is enabling. It is not a requirement or a mandate. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. And if such a registrar were to be hired, that would be, it would be at the expense of the municipality and would have no impact as far as the state is concerned? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

That is correct. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And I urge my side of the aisle and the entire legislature to support this. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir. Will you remark further on the Bill before us? Will you remark further on the Bill before us? If not, staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Members take your seats. The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Have all the members voted? Members, please check the board to ensure that your vote has been properly cast. If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 7173.

Total Number of Voting 143

Necessary for Passage 72

Those Voting Yea 143

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 6

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The Bill is passed. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call House Calendar 216.

CLERK:

On page 22, House Calendar 216, Substitute House Bill No. 6981, AN ACT ESTABLISHING A TASKFORCE TO STUDY PUBLIC HEALTH PREVENTION EFFORTS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Public Health.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

I saw you trying to sneak out. Representative Steinberg, you have the floor, sir.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Steinberg, you have the floor, sir.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This legislation establishes a taskforce to study public health prevention efforts. The focus is on prevention. There are a number of new innovations and best practices out there that are intended to save costs in the system and provide higher quality care. This taskforce will look at some of those innovations and best practices. The Clerk is in position of LCO 6149. I would ask the Clerk to please call the amendment, that I be granted leave of the Chamber to summarize.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Will the Clerk please call LCO No. 6149, which will be designated House Amendment Schedule A.

CLERK:

House A, LCO No. 6149, offered by Representative Steinberg.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The Representative seeks leave of the Chamber to summarize the amendment. Is there objection to summarization? Is there objection to summarization? Hearing none, please proceed, sir.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This makes a very simple technical change, which does not have much impact on the Bill. I move adoption.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The question before the Chamber is on adoption of the amendment. I will pause for a moment to let the amendment continue to be handed out. Will you remark on the amendment before us? Will you remark on the amendment before us? Seeing none, all of those in favor of the amendment before us, please signify by saying aye. Those opposed nay. The ayes have it. The amendment is adopted. [Gavel] Will you remark on the Bill as amended? My good friend, Representative Srinivasan of the 31st, you have the floor, sir.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise in strong support of this Bill as amended. I don't have any questions of our good Chair of the Public Health. But essentially, he said it all, when so much is happening as far as prevention is concerned. We do know prevention is far, far better than treating or curing any disease. So, for us to be on the cutting edge, to have this taskforce look at one of the best practices is definitely the right direction to go. And I urge the Chamber to support this legislation. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you for your comments sir. Will you remark further? Representative Fishbein of the 90th, you have the floor, sir.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. If I may, I have some questions for the proponent of this Bill?

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg looks fully prepared. Please proceed, sir.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Looking at the amendment, it appears that this taskforce regarding Public Health would not have the Commissioner of Public Health on the taskforce, as was originally contemplated by the original language. Am I correct in that? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

That is correct. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Fishbein.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

May I ask why we would remove the Commissioner of Public Health from this taskforce? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

This was at the request of the Department, given many of their other responsibilities. They plan to keep a hand in on this, but given their limited resources, they did not want to be committed to having to have a person on the taskforce. They will obviously be directly involved with any recommendations or report that the taskforce renders. And as I said, they will remain part of the process, but with limited resources, they can't be every place all the time. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Fishbein.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. So, I'm to understand that the legislature would be creating a taskforce that is not important enough, at least in the mind of the Commissioner of Public Health, to serve on because it was his or that Department's request? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

I would not interpret it in that fashion. I know that the Commissioner takes this subject very, very carefully. This is in the context of constrained resources and every agency across, across the administration taking into account our budget cuts and the like, I find their explanation to be reasonable. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Fishbein.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Another portion of the Bill talks about the incentives for the implementation of proven environmental protection systems. If I may, through you, Mr. Speaker, what are these proven environmental protection systems that we are going to be creating incentives for?

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. It's a good question. I'm not expert on the cutting edge new technologies and environmental systems. All I can comment is that we know that quality environmental systems do have an impact on the Public Health, and the precise intent of the taskforce is to explore what these new technologies are and see if there are ways in which we could encourage their adoption in appropriate settings. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

[Gavel] Again, it's getting a little loud in the Chamber. I know Representative Fishbein and Representative Steinberg are literally within feet of each other and I'm not sure they can hear each other. Representative Fishbein, you have the floor, sir.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. So, if I could get the answer. I believe what I heard was we do not know what these proven environmental protection systems are? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

I would say that I am not personally familiar with all the new cutting-edge technology as it applies to environmental systems. There are experts out there. The intent of the taskforce is to bring them together so that we can learn and be up to date on best practices and on new technologies. That serves the intent of the taskforce. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Fishbein.

REP. FISHBEIN (90TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I just, by way of comment, I'm baffled how a taskforce, who is charged with doing the good work of what we're directing them to do, is supposed to figure out what proven environmental systems are without them being defined, so. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir. Will you remark further? I believe that's Representative Belsito of the 53rd, you have the floor, sir.

REP. BELSITO (53RD):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Oh, my God, another taskforce, number 12,439. Only this one, we don't even know who's going to be on it. We don't know what they're looking at. In fact, all of the public that's doing this that are in the industry of medication certainly knows what are the best things to do. Maybe we should just be contacting them. Maybe we should look to another state. So, we're going to start a taskforce in Connecticut for no apparent reason, just to cost us time and money. And once again, I implore everybody to vote no on this because it is not a worthwhile taskforce. Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir. Will you remark further on the Bill as amended before us? Will you remark further on the Bill as amended before us? If not, staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Members take your seats. The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Will you remark further on the Bill before us? Will you remark further on the Bill before us? I would ask members to stay close to their seats. We have some special guests coming in. We're going to do a couple of more Bills and then our guests will be arriving. Have all the members voted? If all the members have voted, please check the board to ensure that your vote has been properly cast. If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked. The Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 6981, as amended by House A.

Total Number of Voting 144

Necessary for Passage 73

Those Voting Yea 115

Those Voting Nay 29

Absent and Not Voting 5

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The Bill passes as amended. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar 33.

CLERK:

On page 1, House Calendar 33, House Bill No. 6979, AN ACT CONCERNING THE ACCREDITATION OF DENTAL ASSISTANT PROGRAMS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Public Health.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg, you have the floor, sir.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Mr. Speaker, I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This Bill expands the list of qualifying education programs that dental assistants can avail themselves of. The Clerk has an amendment, LCO 6036. I ask the Clerk to please call the amendment and I be granted leave of the Chamber to summarize.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Will the Clerk please call LCO No. 6036.

CLERK:

House Amendment Schedule A, LCO No. 6036, offered by Representative Steinberg, Senator Gerratana, Representative Srinivasan.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The Representative seeks leave of the Chamber to summarize the amendment. Is there objection to summarization? Hearing none, please proceed.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This simply adds the word “regional,” so we have national or regional accreditation. I move adoption.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The question is on adoption. Will you remark on the amendment before us? Will you remark on the amendment before us? If not, let me try your minds. All those in favor, please signify by saying aye. Those opposed, nay. The amendment is adopted.

Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. As the good Chairman said, all that this Bill does in the amended Bill is adds the word “national” along with “regional. ” So, the accreditation here is complete and whether you are -- you get the credentials either from the regional or a national board, you can continue to do this practice. It's a good Bill, it ought to pass. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Thank you very much, sir. Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? If not, staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Members take your seats. The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Have all the members voted? Members please stay in the Chamber. We are doing one more Bill and then we're going to have guests arriving. Have all the members voted? Have all the members voted? If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. The Clerk will announce the tally.

CLERK:

House Bill 6979, as amended by House A.

Total Number of Voting 141

Necessary for Passage 71

Those Voting Yea 141

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 8

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Stokes, for what purpose do your rise, sir.

REP. STOKES (58TH):

Okay. I rise to be able to cast my vote in the last vote in the affirmative. I apologize for being out of the Chamber.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The Journal will so note.

REP. STOKES (58TH):

Thank you, sir.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Altobello, for what purpose do you rise, sir?

REP. ALTOBELLO (82ND):

Mr. Speaker, to be recorded in the affirmative, please.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The Journal will also note. The Bill, as amended, is passed. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar 213.

CLERK:

On page 22, Calendar 213, Substitute House Bill No. 6237, AN ACT REQUIRING A STUDY OF MEANS TO IMPLEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE DIABETES ADVISORY COUNCIL. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Public Health.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, good to see you again. I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The question is on Joint Committee's favorable report. You have the floor, Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This Bill requires the Department of Public Health to consider the recommendations of the Diabetes Council. As everyone is aware, diabetes is one of the most broad and expensive chronic conditions that many people suffer from. The Council deliberated and came up with some good recommendations and DPH is given until January of 2019 to consider an Act on those recommendations. I move adoption of the Bill.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

The question is on adoption of the Bill. Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Through you, Mr. Speaker, just a few questions to the proponent of this Bill. Through you, Mr. Speaker. Is this a one-time consultation or is it an ongoing consultation?

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, that's a good question. The intent is for DPH to give it a very clear focus in a limited period of time and act on it by January of 2019. So, it is a short-term focused effort to implement the recommendations of the Council. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In the passage of this Bill, if we were to pass it, all that we are allowing DPH is this one-time consultation and by the next year we should be all done with their report? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

That is correct. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Is there -- what is the fiscal note on this? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

The estimate of the fiscal note is roughly $ 15,000 for the Department of Public Health to analyze that. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

So, through you, Mr. Speaker. Is this $ 15,000 within available appropriations or will it be something new that we'll have to provide DPH with? Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

My understanding is that it will have to be appropriated.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Through you, Mr. Speaker. Because of the background noise, I couldn't hear. Will this have to be appropriated or they already have the funds?

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Steinberg.

REP. STEINBERG (136TH):

My understanding is the money would need to be appropriated in the budget. Through you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Srinivasan.

REP. SRINIVASAN (31ST):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, I appreciate those answers. Thank you.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Representative Belsito.

REP. BELSITO (53RD):

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Oh, my God, another study, 14,531; actually, this one is really beyond belief. We are going to do a study on how to implement the recommendations of the Diabetes Advisory Board. Now, that's what the Board was supposed to do was advise exactly on how to implement the study and do the study on what was wrong.

So, now we're coming back again and we're saying, we're going to do another study. So, another six or seven months. Instead of taking the advice that they gave, and what they looked at, we are going to do a study on a study. Now, it's starting to get out of hand. You know, it's time to stop. And it's gonna cost us some money. Granted, it doesn't seem like very much, but the $ 15,000 will probably turn into $ 150,000 when we're through. But we already have the information; why would we do a study on the information we already have? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

Will you remark further on the Bill before us? Will you remark further on the Bill before us? Seeing none, members please take your seats. Guests to the well of the House. The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Have all the members voted? Have all the members voted? If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will announce the tally. Will the Clerk please announce the tally?

CLERK:

House Bill 6237.

Total Number of Voting 143

Necessary for Passage 72

Those Voting Yea 122

Those Voting Nay 21

Absent and Not Voting 6

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] The Chamber will stand at ease. Ladies and gentlemen, could we please clear the well of the House and have members please take their seats, as I would like to have the opportunity to introduce the UConn Huskies. [Applause]

It is truly an honor to be standing here today, having the privilege to introduce some amazing role models, students and athletes, not to mention their fearless leaders with whom without them, we may not be standing in front of you all today. UConn athletes have given young adults and young athletes not only in Connecticut but across the country a reason to dream and to strive to be the greatest athlete that they can be.

With hard work and dedication, our UConn athletes have proven that anything is possible, whether you are a freshman or a senior, male or female, a season team or a team that is just getting to know each other. Young athletes like Candice, a young basketball player averaging 23 points per game from Elsberry, Missouri, who watched every UConn women's basketball game, trying to learn how to make herself a better player because she wants to play one day for the UConn Women's Basketball Team. Last week was her birthday. The only thing she asked her parents for was a UConn women's basketball shirt.

With their incredible leadership, our athletes are not only successful on but off the courts and off the fields. They show us that it is not about winning or losing, but it is about how you handle yourselves. [Applause]

And as a mother of athletes and an athlete myself, I just want to say you all make us extremely proud to be standing here and recognizing you all today. So, I would like to introduce at this point, Representative Skulczyck, where is he? Oh, athletes, I was asked to have you all turn around so our members can recognize you.

REP. SKULCZYCK (45TH):

Skulczyck, thank you, Madam Speaker, thank you. [Applause] It is my honor and privilege to have been selected to welcome the UConn Men's Football Program and in order to leave our celebrity guests here to last, I want to say thank you to the student athletes, Chris Britton, Ian Campbell, Mason Donaldson, Folorunso Fatukasi, Omar Fortt, and Kyle Shafenacker. Welcome to the football players of UConn. [Applause]

And most importantly to the Coach, Mr. Edsall, I want to welcome you to this House, where we all believe in second chances. Welcome back to Connecticut. [Applause]

SPEAKER ARESIMOWICZ (30TH):

I have to jump in here for a little plug, just so we all are reminded, Friday night at 7 o'clock, over at Rentschler Field, the football team will be putting on their blue and white scrimmage. We should all go over and support our student athletes. So, thank you. [Applause]

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

I would now like to introduce Representative Haddad, who will be introducing the Men's Basketball Team.

REP. HADDAD (54TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I am very happy to be able to introduce members of both the men's basketball coaching staff and our student athletes. Standing on the Dais, our Head Coach, Kevin Ollie. [Applause] Coach Ollie is joined here today by a number of his staff, including Associate Head Coach, Raphael Chillious, Assistant Coach, Ricky Moore, Assistant Coach, Dwayne Killings, Director of Basketball Administration, Kevin Freeman, Athletic Assistant, Assistant Athletic Director, James Doran, Direct of Scouting Video, David Sevush, Director of Strength and Conditioning, Carlos Daniel, Executive Assistant to Kevin Ollie, Larib Omara-Otunnu, and student manager, Joe Spellman. Thank you very much for all of your service. [Applause]

And before I introduce the student athletes, let me just recognize one of their accomplishments this year off the court. We all know about the great work that you do reporting the State of Connecticut on the basketball court, but I also am proud to say that our basketball team has got a perfect academic progress rate of 1000 this year. That means that in addition to the demanding schedule that these student athletes put in in terms of basketball games and practices during the school year, they are also staying on track toward graduation. And that is something that makes us all proud. [Applause]

And so, I'd like to introduce our student athletes, they include Jalen Adams, Mamadou Diarra, Christian Foxen, Alterique Gilbert, Terry Larrier, Restinel Lomotey, and Christian Vital. Thank you. [Applause]

REP. COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. I'd like to now introduce Representative Linda Gentile, who will be introducing the Women's Basketball Team.

REP. GENTILE (104TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. You know, it's with great pride that I rise to introduce our women's team. We will start with our Head Coach, Geno Auriemma. [Applause] Assistant Coach, Marisa Moseley. [Applause] Assistant Director of Basketball Administration, Carly Mooney. [Applause] And Athletic trainer, Genel Francisco. [Applause]

Now, before I introduce our student athletes, I just want to give you a few impressive statistics; 111 winning games, including two national titles. [Applause] 867 days between losses, goes back to November 2012. 108 double-digit winning margins. 65 points, largest margin of victory during their winning streak. 10 consecutive final fours. Four straight championships from 2012 to 2016. And my personal favorite, 23 more wins than the men's team. Sorry, gentleman. [Applause]

They are scholars as well as athletes and they demonstrate dignity and class both on the court and off the court. And ladies, as I announce your name, could you just give a waive to all your fans here in the Chamber.

No. 10, Molly Benton. [Applause] No. 51, Natalie Butler. [Applause] No. 32, Batouly Camara. [Applause] No. 12, Saniya Chong. [Applause] No. 24, Noticia Collier. [Applause] No. 5, Crystal Dangerfield. [Applause] No. 25, Kyla Irwin. [Applause] And if you would just indulge me for one moment, ladies and gentlemen, No. 20, from Ansonia, Connecticut, and the best-damn babysitter around, Tierney Lawlor. [Applause] Tierney, the girls say, “Hello. ” No. 11, Kia Nurse. [Applause] No. 33, Katie Lou Samuelson. [Applause] No. 23, Azura Stevens. [Applause] And No. 15, Gabby Williams. [Applause] Congratulations, ladies, you've made us very proud both on the court and off the court. Welcome to our Chamber. [Applause]

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. I would now like to take the opportunity to introduce the Coaches and our new Director of Athletics, and I believe that there is a conversation among the men back here about who will or who will not speak. But according to the script that I've been given, they are all supposed to. But we will start with the Director of Athletics, David Benedict. [Applause]

DAVID BENEDICT:

Thank you very much. It's an honor to be here. I can't say that I am new any longer. I've been here for just a little over a year. So, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to be here last year, although I had just been here a couple of weeks.

What I can tell you, as someone that is relatively new to the State of Connecticut, I can't tell you how much we appreciate at the University and how much myself and my family like being here in the State of Connecticut. The University is a beacon throughout the nation. What the brand that has been built and a lot of that has to do with the support that the state provides the University. The student athletes that we have standing here in front of you, are why we are in the business that we're in. They represent this state unbelievably well. They represent our coaches unbelievably well. And we could not do it without your support.

The coaches standing behind me represent our institution. We're very fortunate to have Coach Randy Etzel back for a second term. [Applause]

But the thing that I appreciate most about Coach Auriemma, Coach Ollie, and Coach Etzel, is they all believe in the mission of the institution and that is to dedicate themselves selflessly to provide opportunities to develop these young men and women before us. So, please do not, as you contemplate your support for the University, do not forget what the support is for. It's to provide opportunities and to help tomorrow's leaders for this state and for our country. Thank you very much. [Applause]

REP. COOK (65TH):

And I would like to introduce Coach Randy Etzel. [Applause]

RANDY ETZEL:

Thank you, it's great to be back. I really appreciate the opportunity and really the opportunity that you give these young people. I can remember many, many years ago when the Chamber and everybody, the legislature voted to pass the Bill for Rentschler Field. And I was here that night and it was a long night that we were here and again, we appreciate that support because that allows us to be able to track these quality student athletes to come to Connecticut and without that support, we wouldn't be successful.

And let me just say this, these young men are working extremely hard to get the program back to where it was six years ago. And I can just tell you, they'll do everything that they can to make sure we get Rentschler Field filled and get that winning environment back there and because, like I said, there's no place like that. When you get 40,000 people in there, it's a tremendous experience and a tremendous home field advantage. So, thank you for all you do. And again, Go Huskies. [Applause]

REP. COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Coach. I would now like to bring up Coach Kevin Ollie. [Applause]

KEVIN OLLIE:

We really appreciate your support for our men's basketball team, women's basketball team, our great football team, and it comes from you. And we really want to thank you. We're going to put a great product in the future, next season out on the court. We need your support. And one thing that I do want to mention, we got the NCA Tournament coming back here in 2019, and it's for you voting that in, which is a great thing. [Applause] Of course, we can't play it at XL Center, I wish we could, but we can't. But I think that championship trophy has been in our hands and been in our state for the last three decades, 15 times, if I say, together. Us four times and the women 11 times. And we do thing together and that's our mission, that's our goal, and that's how we're going to get through the deficit, that's how we're going to get through life. We're going to do everything together. [Applause]

I appreciate our great leadership and that starts with Dave Benedict, that starts with our great President, Susan Herbst, that gives us an opportunity for me as a coach to do my job on a day-to-day basis. And, of course, I wouldn't be here without my players. And I thank you for this season. And everybody says it was a bad season, but it was a character builder season. And a lot of people see all the obstacles, but we see the opportunities that we have in this core group of guys that we got here. And we're going to do some great things in the future guys. So, make sure we stay together, we keep digging and go Huskies. [Applause]

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

I would now like to introduce Geno Auriemma. [Applause]

GENO AURIEMMA:

You know, I was asking Michelle whether or not this was a good group out here and she said, “Kinda, you know. ” Actually, she said it's a really good group. And I asked her if everybody gets along, you know, and she said, “Yeah. ” Everybody is trying to make sure that it works. Some years, you know, you walk in here and you could cut it with a knife, you know, the tension in here. And it's nice, really, to walk in and see a couple of smiling faces and know that, like Kevin said, there's a lot of work to be done. You guys have a very difficult job. You know, you think about when we have to make a decision, you know, we have fans calling us all the time or writing to us or whatever they do. “Hey, so-and-so should play more. ” I say, “Well, I really would like to play her more, but then I got to take somebody else out. And then whoever likes her the most is going to bitch at me about taking her out, you know. ” [Laughter]

So, you guys have more important decisions to make than that, you know, and not who to play and who not to play. But every decision that you make makes somebody happy. And everyone you make, makes somebody unhappy. But that's why you're here and that's why we're coaches. We get to make tough decisions. We get to make difficult choices. And if we didn't want that, we wouldn't be here. We wouldn't be coaches.

And if these kids in front of us didn't need somebody making those tough decisions, they wouldn't need us as coaches, they could do it by themselves. So, you're all here because you've been entrusted to make very difficult choices and you're not always going to make the right one; and you're not going to always be popular. And some decisions that you make, you're going to get heavily criticized for. And if you're afraid of criticism, then you shouldn't be in here. [Laughter] [Applause]

You know, I said to our players, I said to our players one day, I said that, you know, if you come to Connecticut and you play basketball in Connecticut, and this includes, you know, the men and the women and football hasn't been the last couple of years what they were when Randy was here, and I'm thrilled that he's back because it's like a rejuvenation of what we had that was so good. And it's like a rebirth, you know, everybody has got this great feeling. But certainly, for the men's and women's teams with the championships that Kevin was talking about; if you come to Connecticut and you play basketball and you're not any good, the whole world knows you're not any good. [Laughter] You can't hide. It's not like going to play someplace else, you know. It's like being on Broadway. If you fail on Broadway, the entire country knows. It's not the same as if you fail in Milwaukee. [Laughter] No disrespect to anybody here from Milwaukee. But the flip-side of that is also true.

If you come play at Connecticut and you're really good, the whole country knows you're good. [Applause]

So, the last thing that I would say is those of you that are sitting here, getting ready to make some of these tough decisions, you know, if you're just here to go for the ride, if you're just here to not make any waves, if you're just here to set yourself up for something down the road, you know, you never get another job if you're not great at the one that you have. So, be great at the job you have, those of you that are angling for something more. [Laughter] The only way you can get to be something more is if you're great at what you have. So, be great going forward. We'll all root for you. Go Huskies. [Applause]

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Before we move on and release you all from our Chamber, I would like to just ask you once again to please turn around and so our members of the Chamber can give you all a great welcoming Chamber. [Applause] The Chamber may stand at ease. [Gavel]

[Gavel] Will the Chamber please come back to order. I was asked to announce that we are having a UConn reception down in the Hall of Flags with the teams. So, if anyone does go down, please do. Please listen for the bell because we are going to continue to go back on with our business.

Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 74.

CLERK:

On page 4, Calendar 74, House Bill No. 7066, AN ACT CONCERNING MINOR CHANGES TO THE POULTRY DEALER LICENSING STATUTE, REGISTRATION OF POULTRY FLOCKS AND THE LABELING OF FARM STAND EGGS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Environment.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Demicco.

REP. DEMICCO (21ST):

Thank you very much, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Demicco, you have the floor.

REP. DEMICCO (21ST):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, this Bill comes to us from the Department of Agriculture. It is quite similar to a Bill that passed this Chamber last year, but unfortunately was not called in the Senate. It does several things. It makes minor changes to definitions regarding the Poultry Dealer Licensing Statutes. It establishes a voluntary regulation program for poultry flock owners to be able to participate in the National Poultry Improvement Plan Program. It restricts when an owner can sell poultry or eggs and represent them as being disease-free, and it prohibits farmers from selling falsely-labeled or adulterated eggs at farmer's markets.

I believe it's a good Bill and I would ask my colleagues to support it.

REP. COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on the Bill? Representative Harding.

REP. HARDING (107TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Through you, Madam Speaker, just a few questions to the proponent of this Bill.

REP. COOK (65TH):

Representative Demicco, please prepare yourself. Please proceed.

REP. HARDING (107TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Through you, Madam Speaker, line 64 through 82 of the Bill in regard to the regulation process. Could the good proponent please explain what the current process is now for farmers who would like to sell live poultry or eggs across state lines? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Demicco.

REP. DEMICCO (21ST):

Yes, Madam Speaker, thank you for the question. Yes, the current process, the poultry flock owners have to get the certification from the Department of Agriculture and have their flocks examined by the Department of Agriculture in order to be able to sell them across state lines.

What this Bill proposes to do is to allow flock owners to register their flocks with this National Poultry Improvement Plan Program, which will negate the need to go through this process every time they propose to sell their products. So, by being registered in this program, it's automatically assumed because it's an ongoing program that these products meet the standards of this program, which is a nationally recognized and accepted program. Tu, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Harding.

REP. HARDING (107TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. And through you, Madam Speaker, if I read the language of this Bill properly, this is a voluntary program, correct? Through you, Madam Speaker. So, that if a farmer does not wish to engage in this National Registration Program, they don't have to? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Ren Demicco.

REP. DEMICCO (21ST):

Yes, Madam Speaker, that is correct. It would be to their advantage to participate in this program, and I'm told by the department that this program makes their products more marketable and it gives the buyers a higher level of confidence in the product that they are purchasing. But to specifically answer the Representative's question, it is completely a voluntary program. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Harding.

REP. HARDING (107TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. And the last question through you, Madam Speaker. Lines 105 through 107 seems to make some changes in regard to sales of eggs at farmer's markets. Could the good proponent please explain the reasoning behind these changes, what the Department of Agriculture is looking to do? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Demicco.

REP. DEMICCO (21ST):

Yes, thank you, Madam Speaker. Yes, the Department of Agriculture is always concerned about safety and health. So, what Section 4 of the Bill says, what it does is it gives a little more assurance that eggs that are sold at farmer's markets will be able to be traced to the point of origin, so that in the unfortunate event that someone does become ill, the department is able to track down where the eggs came from and be able to try to mitigate or ameliorate the situation. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Harding.

REP. HARDING (107TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. And if I may, Madam Speaker, just a quick comment. First off, thanks to the proponent for answering the questions. What I'll say is this came out of the Environment Committee unanimously. And what this essentially does, it encourages individuals to register in the National Program.

Currently the law is written that when an individual, when a farmer is looking to sell a chicken, livestock or eggs across state lines, that individual needs to have their flock or that bird inspected. What this essentially does now is it allows an individual to register in the National Program and then have reasonable inspections as opposed to inspections every single time they sell the livestock across state lines.

So, it seems to be a reasonable change and from my discussions with the Department of Agriculture, this seems to be just codifying what current protocol is.

In regard to the Section 4 changes, from what I understand, this is the Department of Agriculture looking to really encourage individuals and farmers at farmer's markets to label where the eggs are coming from and essentially it doesn't allow farmers to falsely label any of these products. So, if there is another origin or farm that's currently labeled on a carton of eggs that would have to be crossed out and they would encourage these farmers at the farmer's markets to place their name or the farm location's name on the carton so there is some level of labeling and tracking down where these eggs are coming from.

So, it seems to be a good Bill. Again, it came out of the Environment Committee unanimously. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on the Bill? Will you remark further on the Bill? If not, will staff and guests, please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take their seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Have all the members voted? Have all the members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. Will the Clerk please announce the tally?

CLERK:

House Bill 7066.

Total Number of Voting 138

Necessary for Passage 70

Those Voting Yea 138

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 11

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 65.

CLERK:

On page 3, Calendar No. 65, Substitute House Bill No. 7022, AN ACT CONCERNING THE CHILDREN'S REPORT CARD. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Children.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Urban.

REP. URBAN (43RD):

Thank you, Madam Chair. I move acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Urban, you have the floor.

REP. URBAN (43RD):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, this just updates our underlying Children's Report Card by codifying the membership of the Kid's Report Card Leadership Committee, which has actually been meeting and in the process of working on the Report Card since 2013. It does things like remove references to PRI and the annual Social Health Index because, Madam Speaker, they no longer exist. And it also removes statutory requirements the Report Card be distributed annually to an extensive list of stakeholders because this Report Card is a web-based software that is interactive. So, it doesn't translate well into a static form. So, we're just going to have it available as the web page that is interactive.

One of the other requirements that we took out was the proficiency data on third grade reading scores, because the CMT is changing, we can't get a baseline. So, we're using the National Assessment of Educational Progress for this in the interim, which is the fourth grade and not the third grade.

With that, Madam Speaker, the Clerk has in his possession an Amendment, LCO 6168, I ask that he call it and I be allowed to summarize.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Will the Clerk please call LCO 6168, which will be designated House Amendment Schedule A.

CLERK:

House Amendment, Schedule A, LCO No. 6168, offered by Representative Urban, Representative Zupkus, and Representative Klarides.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The Representative seeks leave of the Chamber to summarize the Amendment. Is there objection to summarization? Is there objection? Hearing none, Representative Urban, you may proceed with summarization.

REP. URBAN (43RD):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, this establishes a process for the appointment of the Leadership Committee Chairs. It adds language, which makes it clear that the Report Card will be made available online. It adds back the Committee on Children, Chairs, and Ranking as Members, which we inadvertently left out. And it corrects a designation for Human Services Committee using Human Services, not Social Services, and adds to the Leadership Committee the Connecticut Association for Community Action and the Connecticut Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. I urge adoption.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The question before the Chamber is adoption of House Amendment Schedule A. Will you remark on the Amendment? Representative Zupkus.

REP. ZUPKUS (89TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I would encourage all my colleagues to support this. I would like to just recognize the good Chair for all of her hard work she has done on the Children's Report Card because it is very informative and all the data that she has collected is a great help to our Committee.

So, these are really good changes. We've worked in the bipartisan way to make this complete. So, I encourage everyone to support it. Thank you.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Will you remark further? Will you remark further on the Amendment before us? If not, I will try your minds. All those in favor, please signify by saying aye. All those opposed? The ayes have it. The Amendment is adopted. [Gavel] Will you remark further on the Bill as Amended? Will you remark further on the Bill as Amended? If not, will staff and guests, please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take their seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Have all the members voted? Have all the members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if their vote is properly cast. If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked, and the Clerk will please take the tally. Will the Clerk please announce the tally?

CLERK:

House Bill 7022, as amended by House A.

Total Number of Voting 138

Necessary for Passage 70

Those Voting Yea 138

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 11

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The Bill as Amended passes. [Gavel] Representative Ritter.

REP. RITTER (1ST):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. The Clerk has a copy of today's goal list containing today's referrals. I move that we waive the reading of the list of referrals and the Bills be referred to the Committee's indicated, except for Calendar No. 132, which will remain on the Calendar. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Is there objection? Is there objection? Hearing none, let the Bills be referred to the Committees of ways. Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 122.

CLERK:

On page 10, Calendar No. 122, House Bill No. 7024, AN ACT REGULATING THE OFFER AND DISSEMINATION OF TRAVEL INSURANCE. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Insurance and Real Estate.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Good afternoon, Madam Speaker. I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The question is acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Scanlon, you have the floor.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. The Clerk has an Amendment LCO 6210. I would ask the Clerk to please call the Amendment and that I be granted leave of the Chamber to summarize.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Will the Clerk please call LCO 6210, which would be designated House Amendment Schedule A.

CLERK:

House Amendment Schedule A, LCO No. 6210, offered by Representative Scanlon and Representative Sampson.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The Representative seeks leave of the Chamber to summarize the Amendment. Is there objection to summarization? Is there objection? Hearing none, Representative Scanlon, you may proceed with summarization.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. This Amendment is very technical in nature. I offer it in good faith with my friend, the Ranking Member, Representative Sampson, and I move adoption.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The question before the Chamber is adoption of House Amendment Schedule A. Will you remark on the Amendment? Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Good afternoon, Madam Speaker. The Amendment before us is really just technical in nature and as the Chairman mentioned, we have both put our names on this Amendment, so I encourage my colleagues to support it. I will have some questions about the Bill, once the Amendment is hopefully adopted. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further? Will you remark further on the Amendment before us? If not, I try your minds. All of those in favor, please signify by saying aye. All opposed? The ayes have it. The Amendment is adopted. [Gavel] Will you remark further on the Bill as Amended? Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Quite simply, this Bill regulates the Travel Insurance Industry. Believe it or not, there are still quite a few people in the State of Connecticut who rely on travel agents and some of those folks who do decide to take travel, do like to get travel insurance to protect their belongings and make sure that they're going to be okay on the trip. And this Bill simply creates commonsense regulations for the Travel Insurance Industry and I know my colleague, Representative Sampson, has some questions. So, I will leave it at that and urge my fellow colleagues to support this Bill.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and thanks to the Chairman for his brief description of the Bill before us. I just want to go through the Bill a little bit and kind of get some certain things on the record.

First and foremost, I'm curious to know if we have the ability currently to offer travel insurance in the state? Through you, Madam Speaker, to the Chairman.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker. No, we do not.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and thank you to the Chairman for that answer. So, I'm curious, when we say, “travel insurance,” are there specific parameters about what we are talking about? Is this about the cancelation of the trip or is it about items associated with the trip, baggage and so forth? Maybe the Chairman can let me know exactly what is actually included in the term “travel insurance?” Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, through you. The Bill states that -- it very outlines the worst nightmares of any traveler that they would have, such as the interruption of, cancellation of a trip, loss of baggage, damage of accommodations or rental vehicle, or sickness, accident, disability or death concerning during travel. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you again, Madam Speaker, and thank you for that detailed list of items. And I notice that that is right out of Section 1 of the Bill, lines three through 8, and I appreciate that. The only question I really have about this description is that under Item No. C, or rather letter C, it says, “Damage to accommodations or rental vehicles. ” And I'm just curious if the travel insurance product would be primary before any type of rental insurance policy or an automobile insurance policy that is designed to take precedent in a case like that. Through you, Madam Speaker, to the Chairman.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker, I believe this would be the primary insurance that an individual who was to be on a vacation or traveling would use in the event that they damaged an accommodation or a vehicle. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. So, travel insurance to me, from the description, sounds like a line of property casualty insurance. But I notice that there are a number of pages of this Bill dedicated to the process by which it's going to be sold. And it's a little bit different from what I can tell from your typical property casualty type insurance like an auto or a homeowner's policy. And in the case of this particular line of insurance, it seems to me there are accommodations being made to allow the product to be sold by folks that are not actually licensed insurance producers.

And I'd just like to make sure that we have it very clear for the record exactly who is licensed and authorized to sell this product and the process by which that happens. So, a question, through you, Madam Speaker to the Chairman would be, who is in fact licensed to sell this product and what is the process that a travel agency, for instance, could go about offering travel insurance? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker. So, the Bill defines somebody who is going to be selling this product as a limited lines travel insurance producer. And to answer the Representative's question, what a person would have to do to become a limited lines insurance producer would be they would have to go to the insurance department, they'd have to register as a limited lines insurance travel producer and they would have to pay a fee to become one of those producers and they would be able to go out and sell travel insurance. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and I thank the Chairman for that answer. Just a couple of follow-up questions. So, it seems to me that the Bill allows people beyond what is defined as a limited lines travel insurance producer, which from my experience sounds like what we might call a managing general agent, somebody that has authorization from the insurance company to sell the product. But am I right that they actually have the ability to have other people sell the product essentially under their license? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker. That is my understanding. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Yeah, I think that's all pretty much covered under the section that talks about the designated travel retailer, which is someone who essentially is granted the ability to act on behalf of that managing general agent or travel insurance producer to sell the product. Let me just follow up with one other thing that we just talked about and that is about the licensing. I noticed on line 43, it says, “The Commissioner may approve or deny such an application to become that managing general agent. ” And I'm just curious to know that the reasons might be why a Commissioner might deny such an application? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker. Those answers are not densely defined in the Bill. It just simply gives the Commissioner the ability to approve or deny. And since this is the inaugural licensing of travel agents or travel insurance producers, I believe that the Commissioner and her staff would likely put together the qualifications and the, you know, different situation in which they would be requesting information from an individual that seeks to become a producer. So, it does not specify what exactly it is, but I believe we're allowing the Commissioner to have the discretion to determine that. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and thanks to the Chairman for that answer. So, I understand that the insurance Commissioner already grants several types of licenses to produce insurance. And to me this would fall under the category of a property casualty insurance license. And I'm certain that there are certain requirements that are laid out in that application process. Maybe you have to indicate that you've never been convicted of a felony or have some sort of criminal background or any type of fraud involved in the insurance industry before you're eligible. And I'm just curious if we would assume from the language in the Bill that that is the exact same process here. That if you're eligible for a property casualty insurance license, you'd be granted authority to sell this product? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker, that is correct.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. That's very good news. I just wanted to make sure that there is not some separate list of qualifications for this. I imagine, like any other insurance product, not only do you have to have a license from the State of Connecticut, from the Insurance Commissioner's Office, to determine that you're eligible to sell these products, but you also have to have the authorization of the actual insurance company that offers the product, who has you assigned you up essentially as their producer. So, I notice when you get to lines 48 and on, they start to talk about something called a registry. And I just have a question or two about that. What is this registry for and who does it apply to? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker. The registry is essentially a, for lack of a better word, a database or a registry of the travel agents that a person selling or producer selling this insurance are working with. Typically, somebody who is a travel agent may have information at their disposal when somebody comes into their agency and says that they'd like to book a vacation. They may also inquire about whether that agent happens to know about travel insurance.

And so, if this agent, travel agent, decided that they wanted to refer somebody to somebody who could produce insurance for them, they would have to detail who that is, their information, their name, for every single travel agent that they were working with, in said registry, as outlined in this section of the Bill. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. So, if I understand this correctly, it is the limited lines travel insurance producer that is essentially maintaining a registry of all of the individual travel agent personnel that he has given permission to sell that travel insurance product on his behalf; so, he has a record of who is selling those products. Are those travel agents that are on the registry able to discuss insurance matters under current law with regard to the amount of coverage that's afforded under the policy and options that might be available to them? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker, if the gentleman could rephrase his question, repeat his question, I'd appreciate that. Through you.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and thanks to the Chairman. I just want to clarify that we are not extending the actual ability to make -- to give advice essentially about the purpose of insurance to people that are not licensed insurance agents just because they are on this registry; and I'm hoping the good Chairman would confirm that for me? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker, that is correct.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and thank you to the Chairman for answering that question. There is a section between line 64 and line 68 that says that that limited lines travel insurance producer, which I keep referring to as a managing general agent, an MGA because that's how I understand this from my experience in the industry. It says that that person can designate an employee who is also an insurance producer to be the individual responsible for the sales of that product through that company and that makes perfect sense to me. I would just like to make sure that there would be a requirement that that particular insurance producer is the one that is on file with the Insurance Commissioner's Office and also maintaining the proper amount of errors and omissions insurance so that we are not somehow giving that limited lines travel insurance producer or MGA, some protection against liability? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker. I believe that the Representative is asking whether or not the individual who would be designated would also be somebody who would be known to the Insurance Department, and the answer to that is yes, because the individual has to be, as the Representative explained, a limited lines producer. And to be a limited lines producer, you have to register with the state. So, that person would be on file with the State of Connecticut Insurance Department and therefore be known to the Commissioner. It wouldn't just be an outstanding actor that was not known to the Department. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and thanks again to the Chairman. I appreciate you taking the time to let me get these particular items on the record. I think it's important that we go through the Bill to make sure that we really have a handle on who is responsible for what and that we are certainly protecting consumers and that this particular product of insurance is sold in a way that not only it becomes available and an asset to Connecticut's economy, but also that people purchasing it have some sort of recourse.

There is a later part of the Bill, I think starting around line 95, where there are certain comments about travel insurance, or rather travel retailers that are operating under a travel insurance producer. And I'm curious. A question for the Chairman, through you, Madam Speaker. Can a travel retailer make the purchase of this travel insurance a requirement for their customers purchasing a trip, for instance? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker. No, they cannot.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Excellent. Thank you very, very much. I appreciate that, Madam Speaker, and I appreciate the Chairman's answer, also.

Just one other follow up question about the registry and; that is, is the registry that the managing general agent or limited lines travel insurance producer that he's keeping on file of all of the travel retailers that are authorized to sell product on his behalf, where is that registry maintained? Are they merely required to hang on to it in case they're audited or is that something that's going to be submitted to the insurance department for review? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Scanlon.

REP. SCANLON (98TH):

Through you, Madam Speaker. It is maintained in the office of whoever is the seller of the product. But the Commissioner in this Bill has the ability to audit said registry at any time during the course of normal business hours. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sampson.

REP. SAMPSON (80TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and I thank the Chairman for that answer. That concludes all of the questions that I have for the Chairman on the Bill. I appreciate his knowledge of the material before us. I think this is an excellent new product offering that's going to be available in our state. I'm very pleased to be part of an effort to try and increase the types of products that are sold in our state and I believe it's a pro-business kind of Bill. There is a little difference in the way it's being handled from the way any type of travel insurance was sold before in that I think that we are trying to create a mechanism where fewer licensed producers of travel insurance area actually licensed by the state, but they are doing it in a different capacity as managing general agents.

And, therefore, that explains the pretty significant increase in the fee for the license from $ 80 to $ 650. But that is in a total different situation than having every insurance producer have to purchase a separate license for this. There are essentially going to be very few agents and they are able to set up people to sell the product on their behalf. So, I think it's a good plan and as I said, I think this is a pro-business measure. And I would encourage my colleagues to support it. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? Will you remark further on the Bill as amended? If not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take your seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Have all the members voted? Have all the members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. Will the Clerk please announce the tally?

CLERK:

House Bill 7024, as amended by House A.

Total Number of Voting 139

Necessary for Passage 70

Those Voting Yea 138

Those Voting Nay 1

Absent and Not Voting 10

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The Bill as Amended passes. [Gavel] Representative Ackert.

REP. ACKERT (8TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. For purposes of introduction.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Please proceed.

REP. ACKERT (8TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. So, I am joined again on spring break, my daughter is on spring break from her classes, teaching in New Haven, my daughter Taylor. And proudly, for the third year in a row, three years ago she was only about two week's old when she visited. But today, if you can read her shirt is says, “It's my birthday. ” So, Fiona Mae, my granddaughter is here to come by and celebrate part of her birthday today with grandpa at the Capitol, while mom's on break. So, if I could ask the Chamber for their traditional welcoming. [Applause]

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. We would like to welcome you to our Chamber and Happy Birthday.

Representative Fusco.

REP. FUSCO (81ST):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. We had a little problem with the apparatus on the voting board. So, for the record, my vote was yes, for the last Bill, confirming.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

So, Representative, the transcript will note that you vote in the opposition or the affirmative?

REP. FUSCO (81ST):

The affirmative.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you very much, will the transcript please note Representative Fusco in the affirmative.

Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 267.

CLERK:

On page 27, Calendar No. 267, House Bill No. 7104, AN ACT CONCERNING RENEWABLE PORTFOLIO STANDARD COMPLIANCE REQUIREMENTS. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Energy and Technology.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Zupkus, for what may you rise?

REP. ZUPKUS (89TH):

I rise for the point of a possible conflict of interest and I would like to recuse myself, please.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will the Chamber stand at ease? [Gavel] Will the Chamber please come back to order. Representative Reed.

REP. REED (102ND):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I move for acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Reed, you have the floor.

REP. REED (102ND):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. This Bill actually streamlines our RPS process and I know everybody has been concerned about that. We have an RPS process where the energy, utilities, and the suppliers must purchase a certain percentage of RPS credits every year. And there is a reporting process that we've allowed to spill over into the next year, which slows down the ability of our regulators to really ensure that these goals have been met and this Bill brings it back into compliance with the rest of the New England states. It passed out of the Committee unanimously. There is no fiscal impact and there is no impact to rate payers and I move passage.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Will you remark further on the Bill? Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, a few questions to the proponent of the Bill, please, through you.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Please proceed.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. As I understand this Bill, this is unusual sometimes for government because we are trying to operate in a more efficient manner; is that true? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Reed.

REP. REED (102ND):

Through you, Madam Speaker. Yes, indeed, and it is a surprise, but this is an administrative alteration that is going to make the process better and actually more efficient, which is better for taxpayers. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and I thank the gentle Chairwoman for that answer. As I understand it, RPS or Renewable Portfolio Standard Credits are counted and each electric distribution company and supplier has to provide so many per year to a value. And this is a way to reconcile that they are in this compliance; is that true? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Reed.

REP. REED (102ND):

Through you, Madam Speaker, yes, it is. And double checking and making sure that they have indeed met those goals is a really important part of really incentivizing and fast tracking the development of renewables. So, it's very important that we know that those goals have indeed been met. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, and thank the good Representative for that answer as well. And as I understand this, as we near 2020 and at 20 percent of Class I Renewables, thereabout, and also Class II and Class III Renewables, what this Bill does is it pulls all of these reconciliations to happen within a Calendar year; is that true? Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Reed.

REP. REED (102ND):

Through you, Madam Speaker, yes, it is. Again, the rest of New England states do that and do it within that calendar year and so we were sort of out of whack with that and since we are trying to work more closely as a region to make sure that the rate payers get the best bang for their buck, this was an unnecessary confusion that we now are going to be eliminating with the passage of this Bill. Through you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Hoydick.

REP. HOYDICK (120TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. So, in short, to my colleagues in the Chamber, this is taking the fifth quarter out of this reconciliation and we're doing it with the reconciliation within four quarters. We are streamlining the processes through PURA and DEEP, and I would urge passage, of my colleagues to vote for this Bill. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Ackert. Will you remark further on the Bill? Will you remark further on the Bill? If not, will staff and guests please come to the well of the House. Will the members please take your seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Have all the members voted? Have all the members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked and the Clerk will take a tally. Will the Clerk please announce the tally?

CLERK:

House Bill 7104.

Total Number of Voting 137

Necessary for Passage 69

Those Voting Yea 137

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 12

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] Will the Clerk please call Calendar No. 323.

CLERK:

On page 37, Calendar 323, House Bill No. 7254, AN ACT REQUIRING SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS TO COMPLETE A PROGRAM OF STUDY IN EVIDENCE-BASED STRUCTURED LITERACY INTERVENTIONS FOR STUDENTS WITH DYSLEXIA. Favorable report of the Joint Standing Committee on Education.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Fleischmann.

REP. FLEISCHMANN (18TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, good to see you up there. I move acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The question before the Chamber is on acceptance of the Joint Committee's favorable report and passage of the bill. Representative Fleischmann, you have the floor.

REP. FLEISCHMANN (18TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. So, Madam Speaker, this is one of those instances where the long and seemingly convoluted title of the Bill tells the story. This is a measure that will ensure that we have still greater assurance for children with dyslexia in the State of Connecticut. That the teachers who are assigned to work with them are able to properly identify dyslexia and make interventions when it is identified. As folks on both sides of the aisle are aware, we've made a number of steps over the last few years in this area and what this Bill addresses is a zone that was overlooked essentially.

Many, many of the children in the State of Connecticut who deal with dyslexia are in special education. There are some special education teachers who know about dyslexia. There are many who don't. The reason that there are many who do not is that at this moment in this state we do not require the same sort of training around identifying and intervening for dyslexia that we do for say a reading specialist. Even though special education teachers are the ones who may be dealing with as many cases of dyslexia as a reading specialist out there.

So, in essence, this Bill closes that gap in our system and ensures that today and going forward we will have special education teachers who do fully understand not only how to diagnose and recognize dyslexia, but the evidence-based interventions needed to help a child succeed and become successful and overcome the reading challenges that are unique to dyslexia.

I also just want to acknowledge that this has been very much a bipartisan effort. I see my good Ranking Member standing. Madam Speaker, it's good to see you at the Dias, as we're discussing this. You, yourself were one of the legislators who really drew attention to this issue and this hole in our statutory construction. There really have been people from both sides of the aisle of both chambers who have been involved in, who care, and I appreciate all of the good work all of them have put in.

Last, but not least, we can't overlook the dedicated advocacy of the families, the children and parents of children with dyslexia. This year they gave briefer testimony than in past years, but they submitted a list of the names of the families and children who cared, and it was a long list. It was pages long, because there are so many families going to public school in Connecticut, trying to deal with this challenge, working with faculty and staff who don't have as much knowledge as the families might like.

So, my hat is off to them for their continued advocacy and it's my hope that this will be a bipartisan Bill today as it was in the Education Committee. Thank you, Madam Chair.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on the Bill? Representative Lavielle.

REP. LAVIELLE (143RD):

Thank you very much, Madam Speaker, good evening to you. And I agree with everything that our good Chairman of the Education Committee has just said about the Bill and about the bipartisan nature of the work that we did on it, the collaboration. I would mention as well as everyone that he referred to, you Madam Speaker, and certainly I would thank him for his collaborative work and Representative Fleischmann for his collaborative work and contributions to this. I also would mention Representative Kokoruda and Representative Wood. It really was just a missing link that we had to fill in making sure that teachers were prepared when they have an endorsement or a special qualification in early literacy or special education that they understand dyslexia fully and are able to identify it and then to help the students deal with it and make progress. And it's noteworthy that in the training that the Bill requires for them, there is both instruction and practical work and that is very, very important because they actually do get the practice.

I would mention one other thing, which is that I think we all know that if problems with literacy are not identified early, it becomes more and more difficult over time to treat them and also difficult for the student to learn other things. And this Bill actually, it doesn't cost any money, but it's actually going to save money because it will save all of those efforts over time.

So, I think it's a necessary Bill. It's a Bill that is going to do a lot of good for a lot of people and it was really an obvious thing to do. So, I urge everyone in the Chamber to join us in supporting it. Thank you very much, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. [Gavel] If you all could please tone it down just a little bit. We're having trouble hearing. Thank you very much. Representative Wood.

REP. WOOD (141ST):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. And I, too, stand in strong support of this legislation. I'd like to first thank a few people, certainly Representative Fleischmann and Representative Lavielle for their work in Committee getting this out and also to Allison Quirion on decoding dyslexia. She's been just remarkable and so helpful in some of the details of this legislation.

And what has not been mentioned is that there is no cost to this, to either the municipality or the state. What this does, this Bill requires that any teacher --

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

[Gavel] The Representative is having trouble hearing. Thank you very much.

REP. WOOD (141ST):

Thank you. Any teacher who wishes to be certified in special education would have to take courses, a program of study, not just one course, not just two hours, but a program of study in evidence-based structured literacy, which is phonemic awareness.

Kids who are dyslexic can't break down words by the phonemic sounds, and we need to make sure the teachers who are teaching them know how to teach them. So, I'm very happy to support this. I also wanted to mention that the numbers are between 15 and 20 percent of our students in our public schools are dyslexic. Many of them aren't determined or identified until they are in third or fourth grade, which is too late. We need to focus on early intervention, proper remediation.

So, I do want to thank everyone for this and encourage everyone's support and also co-sponsorship. So, thank you, thank you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative Wood. If you all could please take your conversations outside. We have a few other speakers on the board. Representative Belsito.

REP. BELSITO (53RD):

Thank you very much, Madam Speaker. I just want to inform everybody that this is not a study, even though it says it in the write up. This is a very, very important Bill. When I first came to the Chamber, that was four years ago just about, one of the first meetings I was at was people who were telling the Committee on Education about dyslexia. And the parent got up and said, “My son is in the 12th grade and he cannot read because they have just discovered that he has dyslexia. ” This is a very, very important Bill. We should stand shoulder-to-shoulder on this because this Bill should pass, it will pass, and it is a very, very good Bill, and it's going to help a lot of children. Thank you very much.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Smith.

REP. SMITH (108TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I just want to thank my colleagues for bringing this Bill forward. You know, there are too many of our students who are going through our schools and are left behind because they failed to properly be identified with this type of issue. I had a constituent in New Fairfield whose daughter graduated with a second grade reading level because she was not identified as being dyslexic.

And subsequent to that, upon graduating from high school, she learned that she was and is now reading at a college level. So, for us to hold students behind, our children behind when they could simply be helped with the proper training, is a shame. I'm so happy we're moving this Bill forward today and urge my colleagues to support it. Thank you.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Will you remark further on the Bill? Will you remark further on the Bill? If not, will staff and guests, please come to the well of the House. Will members please take your seats? The machine will be open.

CLERK:

The House of Representatives is voting by roll. Members to the Chamber. The House of Representatives is voting by roll, members to the Chamber.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Have all of the members voted? Have all of the members voted? Will the members please check the board to determine if your vote is properly cast. If all the members have voted, the machine will be locked, and the Clerk will take the tally. Will the Clerk please announce the tally?

CLERK:

House Bill 7254.

Total Number of Voting 136

Necessary for Passage 69

Those Voting Yea 136

Those Voting Nay 0

Absent and Not Voting 13

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The Bill passes. [Gavel] Are there any announcements? Representative Ritter.

REP. RITTER (1ST):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Just to remind everybody, thanks for a productive day, we are not going to be in tomorrow. And at this point in time, we do not anticipate being in session next week. But the week of May 1st, we expect to be in multiple days that week. So, please, you know, begin to plan accordingly. Thank you.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Borer.

REP. BORER (115H):

Thank you, Madam Speaker, I just want to make a quick announcement that the Public Health Committee will hold the Committee meeting tomorrow to consider Bills referred from the floor. The meeting will be held on April 20th, tomorrow, at 10: 30 a. m. in the Public Health conference room. Thank you.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Sanchez.

REP. SANCHEZ (25TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. For the purposes of an announcement, tomorrow is Early Childhood Advocacy Day. It will be at the Old Judiciary at 9: 30 a. m. , and I hope to see people there. Thank you.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Luxenberg.

REP. LUXENBERG (12TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. For purposes of a journal notation. The following members missed votes today: Representative Albis, legislative business outside of the state. Representative Stallworth, Verrengia, Walker, Altobello, Genga, Borer, Lesser, and Porter for legislative business outside of the Chamber. Business in District was Representative Morris. And family commitments were Representative Ziogas and Representative Rovero.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Betts.

REP. BETTS (78TH):

For the first time today, Madam Speaker, oh, I'm sorry, it is my pleasure to inform you for the purpose of the journal that Representative, the Representative John Frey was attending a funeral and missed a vote. We have Representative LeGeyt who is doing family business. We have Representative Rebimbas and MacLachlan out of the country doing legislative business. Representative France and Tweedie doing business back in the District. And for the transcript, Representative Dubitsky, and Belsito and Fishbein were out of the Chamber doing legislative business. And that is all I wish to say for today, April 19th. Thank you so very much.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Candelora.

REP. CANDELORA (86TH):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Just quickly as we are rushing out of the Chamber. I want to take this opportunity to wish a Happy Birthday to Representative Gail Lavielle. Happy Birthday. [Applause]

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Well, Representative Lavielle, Happy Birthday. Representative Betts. Representative Betts for the second time. Representative Betts for the second time.

REP. BETTS (78TH):

What am I speaking for?

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Your button was pushed, Representative, I'm just acknowledging you.

REP. BETTS (78TH):

Well, you did push my button, I was unaware of it and I thank you so much, but I have nothing further to say. [Applause]

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Kupchick.

REP. KUPCHICK (132ND):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I pushed my button for the last vote, but apparently, it didn't register. But I want the transcript to reflect that I would have voted in the affirmative.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

The journal will note that your vote was cast in the affirmative.

REP. KUPCHICK (132ND):

Thank you, Madam Speaker.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Representative Borer for the second time.

REP. BORER (115H):

Yes, thank you, Madam Speaker, for the second time. There has been a correction to the Public Health Committee meeting being held tomorrow at 10: 30 a. m. It will not be in the Public Health Conference Room, it will be right out here in the Chamber, outside of at 10: 30 a. m. , and the votes will be kept open until 5 p. m.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Thank you, Representative. Representative Ritter. Representative Ritter.

REP. RITTER (1ST):

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I move that we adjourn, subject to the Call of the Chair. Thank you.

SPEAKER COOK (65TH):

Without objection, the House stands adjourned. [Gavel]

(On motion of Representative Ritter of the 1st District, the House adjourned at 5: 20 o'clock p. m. , sine die. )

CERTIFICATE

I hereby certify that the foregoing 219 pages is a complete and accurate transcription of a digital sound recording of the House Proceedings on April 19, 2017.

I further certify that the digital sound recording was transcribed by the word processing department employees of Alpha Transcription, under my direction.

________________________

Alpha Transcription

3244 Ridge View Ct 104

Lake Ridge VA 22192

TOP