How to Fight Utility Hikes

State Representative Joe Gresko, (D)
121st Connecticut House District

Dear Neighbor,

As the natural gas supply shortage continues to affect the globe and the country, United Illuminating (UI) announced that they are doubling their rates effective January 1, 2023. This unwelcome news comes as UI collects record profits, passing the cost burden onto us.

The severe service rate increases will impact thousands of Connecticut families who have already faced numerous challenges over the last few years and now may not have the resources they need to keep their heat and lights on throughout the winter months.

This is unacceptable.

My legislative colleagues and I have been hard at work finding solutions, both long- and short-term, to ensure every family in Connecticut has access to affordable utilities:

How you can save now:

Last month, the Governor announced the launch of the collaborative short-term Customer Relief Plan, a $120/year credit towards your electricity bill, for all UI customers, which can offer a savings of $10/month on your utility bill.

Energize CT is a publicly funded resource where you can secure lower rates for a minimum of 4 months from third-party suppliers and learn how to make your home energy efficient to lower consumption.

During the November special session, we increased funding for Operation Fuel, an energy assistance resource for qualifying low-income families, which has an assistance program that began December 19th.

During the November special session, we also approved an additional $30 million boost in funding for the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which you can apply for here through May 31, 2023.

Additional energy assistance is available by contacting Human Services Department, community action agency, or me directly.

In addition to these resources, House Democratic Leadership has formed a bipartisan commission with industry-experienced representation to evaluate alternative energy programs and legislative proposals that we can raise to protect families from severe rate hikes like this in the future.

The work we are committed to:

  • Greater investment in other sources of clean energy to remain committed to Connecticut’s environmental goals while making our state’s utilities affordable for all.
  • More regional options for energy supply to lower delivery costs.
  • Sufficient transparency on rate increases offering greater review and public input.
  • Research states with regulated markets and lower consumer costs to draft similar legislative proposals.

I understand that the soaring energy prices continue to affect working families, which is why my colleagues and I remain committed to working on solutions that will provide resources and assistance to ease the cost burden on you. Please feel free to share your thoughts with me on how we can better offer aid to working families, and if you need help applying for any of the energy assistance programs listed above, please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

As always, please feel free to reach out to me at the Capitol at 860-842-0363 or email me at

Joseph P. Gresko

Plan Development: DOT Traffic Signal Project in Stratford

by State Representative Joe Gresko, (D)
121st Connecticut House District

Dear Neighbor,

The Department of Transportation (DOT) has announced a plan for installations and revisions at the following traffic control signals in Stratford:

Traffic Control Signal – Partial Replacement (all equipment expect support structures) on Route 113 (Lordship Blvd.) at:

  • Honeyspot Road
  • Honeyspot Road Ext
  • Access Road
  • Surf Avenue
  • Garfield Avenue
  • Long Beach Boulevard


Traffic Control Signal – Minor Revisions (upgrade controller and GPS unit) on Route 113 (Lordship Blvd.) at:

  • Eagles Next Road
  • DOT Maintenance Garage
  • Watson Boulevard

As always, please feel free to reach out to me at the Capitol at 860-842-0363 or email me at

How To Follow State Laws and Lawmakers

by State Representative Phil Young (D)
120th Connecticut House District

Dear Neighbor,

Happy New Year to you and your family! As the year ends, I want to take a moment to reflect on the past year and be thankful for the support of the community near and far. Cheers to another great year, as I wish much happiness, health and wealth to you all.

Once we ring in the New Year, the Connecticut General Assembly will quickly get back into business. The 2023 legislative session is set to begin on Wednesday, January 4th. Every legislative session and committee meeting will be streamed live on CT-N.

In addition to watching session and public hearings, there are numerous ways for you to stay engaged in our state’s democracy. Below are just some of the resources available to you as the 2023 legislative session gets underway:

  • Visit the CGA website to view a daily schedule of events, access committee information, find your State Senator or State Representative, and more.

  • Read the Bulletin to find out when committees are meeting, how to provide public hearing testimony, and more.

  • Register for the CGA’s Bill Tracking system, here, to follow any bill as it moves through the legislative process. You will receive notifications when the bill’s status changes.

  • For information on how to testify on a bill that is up for a public hearing, follow this link.

  • Access the CGA’s Citizen’s Guide, here, for more on how you can become part of the process

  • Are you curious about how your tax dollars are spent? The State Comptroller’s OpenConnecticut web portal allows residents to track state government spending in real time.

Your concerns and opinions are fundamental to the legislative process. Please continue to reach out to me to share your thoughts, ideas, and questions.

Sincerely,  Phil Young

New Laws for the New Year

State Representative Joe Gresko, (D)
121st Connecticut House District

Dear Neighbor,

As we prepare to ring in the new year and welcome the start of 2023, a number of laws passed will take effect when the clock strikes midnight on January 1st!

These laws mark the tireless work put in by my colleagues and me throughout the 2021 and 2022 Legislative Sessions to address your concerns and make necessary changes in Hartford.

Here are a few of the laws taking effect January 1st:

Addressing the Kid’s Mental Health Crisis:

Comprehensive legislation to address the immediate, intermediate, and long-term needs of the children’s mental and behavioral health system in Connecticut by:

Enhancing the Behavioral Health Workforce

Supporting School-Based Mental Health Services

Expanding Mental Health Treatment Facilities Across the State

Supporting Existing Services

Increasing Access Through Insurance Coverage

The provisions were included in PA 22-47 – Passed in 2022

The Bottle Bill:

Will expand the types of bottles and cans accepted in the 5-cent return program to now include:


Hard Seltzers


Energy Drinks


This provision was included in PA 21-58 – Passed in 2021 – which makes tiered adjustments to the state’s bottle redemption program through January 2024

Banning a Harmful Pesticide:

Will prohibit Connecticut golf courses from using the pesticide Chlorpyrifos to control foliage and soil-borne insect pests.

Implements a civil penalty of up to $2,500 for any found in violation.

These provisions were included in PA 22-142 – Passed in 2022

Lead Poisoning Safety:

Will take a tiered approach strengthening Connecticut’s lead poisoning testing standards to align with federal standards and will lower the threshold for youth testing levels that trigger parental notification or home inspection

The Governor’s Office reported that in 2020, over 1,000 Connecticut Children tested at high enough lead levels to trigger the federal standard for a home inspection.  These provisions were included in PA 22-49 – Passed in 2022 – and will incrementally lower the qualifying testing levels through January 2025.

Breast & Ovarian Cancer Screening Coverage:

Certain commercial health insurance policies will be required to cover:



MRIs for breast screenings

Breast biopsies

Certain prophylactic mastectomies

Breast reconstruction surgery

BRCA 1 and 2 testing

Ovarian cancer screenings

These provisions were included in PA 22-90 – Passed in 2022 – which expanded required insurance coverage from previous legislative efforts

These are just a few of the laws and provisions going into effect when we celebrate the new year.

Laws Taking Effect January 1

As you look over the new laws taking effect in 2023, I want to remind you that there is always an opportunity to have your voice heard, especially with the upcoming General Session convening on January 4th. Please make sure to stay active in the legislative processes and let me know what you would like to see in both our community and throughout Connecticut.

As always, please feel free to reach out to me at the Capitol at 800-842-0363 or email me at

CareerConneCT Free Job Training

by State Representative Joe Gresko, (D)
121st Connecticut House District

Dear Neighbor,

Great news! CareerConneCT is expanding its intake portal. The goal of CareerConneCT is to provide underemployed and unemployed Connecticut residents with resources and training necessary for the pursuit of a well-paying, high-quality career path. The program provides free job training, case management, supportive services, and employment assistance.

Interested jobseekers should enroll through an online intake portal.

Once enrolled, participants will be connected to reskilling, upskilling, or next-skilling opportunities in various in demand fields, such as manufacturing, information technology, health care, infrastructure and clean energy.

Once registered in the portal, participants will complete a brief skills inventory and then receive a Career Coach who will help them access training that meets their skills and interests. Participants also can explore career paths, learning opportunities and available jobs.

To get started, you will need to complete 3 simple steps:

• Create an account on the CareerConneCT portal and complete the intake form
• Complete a brief skills inventory
• Work with your assigned CareerConneCT coach to enroll in a training program that is right for you

If eligible, all training programs are at no cost and provide supportive services such as childcare, transportation, and technology.

As always, please feel free to reach out to me at the Capitol at 800-842-0363 or email me at

State Tackles Pensions

State Representative Joe Gresko, (D)
121st Connecticut House District

I am pleased to report that responsible budgeting and major structural changes made to pension and teachers’ retirement’s plans are putting Connecticut on much more solid fiscal ground and saving taxpayers billions in debt payments.

The Office of Policy and Management noted the teachers’ retirement unfunded liability has been reduced by a billion dollars in the last year. Combined with other recent deposits, the state will save $9.4 billion over the next 25 years.

Millions of dollars that would have otherwise gone to debt payments can be freed up to continue investments in childcare, mental health, higher education, and workforce training, improving the quality of life for all residents.

In a CT Insider Article by Ken Dixon this week on the pensions and retirement plans he stated:

Lawmakers on the legislative budget-setting committees on Monday got a raft of good news as they head into next month’s new session with a nearly billion-dollar budget surplus and historic investments in the under-funded pension programs for state employees and public school teachers.

During a two-hour presentation-and-question session with members of the Finance Committee and the Appropriations Committee, Gov. Ned Lamont’s budget office and the non-partisan Office of Fiscal Analysis agreed that higher-than-expected revenue, which increased by 7 percent in the budget year that ended June 30, is expected to continue.

“The teachers’ retirement unfunded liability has been reduced by a billion dollars in the last year,” said Jeffrey Beckham, who as secretary of the Office of Policy and Management is Lamont’s budget chief who is currently working on a two-year budget proposal that Lamont will submit to the General Assembly in February. “And the Teachers’ Retirement System funded ratio has increased from 51 percent to 57 percent.” The pension obligations have been reduced by $7 billion in recent years, he said.

The State Employee Retirement System, he said will soon reflect the $3.2-billion investment of surplus revenue required whenever the $3-billion-plus emergency reserves reach their maximum. More than 30 percent of the state budget is long-term debt for capital expenditures totaling $27 billion.

In recent years, major structural changes were made to the pension plans, including re-amortizing the funds’ debt over a new 30-year period, and projecting more-realistic investment returns of 6.9 percent, Beckham said. “In the last couple of years we have made enough deposits that have saved $9.4 billion over the next 25 years,” Beckham said, noting that last year, there would have only been a $3 billion savings over the next quarter century.

Last spring, the General Assembly approved budget adjustments to the second year of the biennium totaling $22.4 billion. State Sen. Cathy Osten, co-chairwoman of the Appropriations committee said that the overall financial picture is good. Rep. Sean Scanlon, D-Guilford, the co-chairman of the Finance Committee who will leave the legislature to become state comptroller, agreed.

“It’s great to see a report like this,” Scanlon said. “It’s something we should be celebrating.” State Sen. Henri Martin of Bristol, a top Republican on the Finance Committee, agreed. “It’s very encouraging to see positive numbers,” Martin said. Sales and use taxes have increased in double figures.

“Essentially, revenue is growing faster than fixed costs,” said Neil Ayers, director of the Office of Fiscal Analysis, expecting an additional $2.8 billion to be invested in the two pension programs. He said that the “budget puzzle” facing the General Assembly while it crafts a new two-year spending package in the spring of 2023, is the projected small $6.7 million surplus in the budget that starts July 1, 2023.

State Sen. Craig Miner of Litchfield, a top Republican on the Appropriations Committee who did not seek reelection, said that in his 22 years in the legislature, this could be the most-positive fiscal report he has seen, crediting the bipartisan state budget of 2017 that established “guardrails” on spending and investments in the emergency reserves and pension plans that Backham said Lamont plans to extend.

Still, state Sen. John Fonfara, D-Hartford, the veteran co-chairman of the Finance Committee, warned that with more than 50 percent of state spending from fixed costs, the state budget still offers challenges to the next legislature, which convenes on January 4. “We don’t talk about how to grow the economy that much,” Fonfara said.

Beckham complained that the state is having trouble hiring new employees, particular doctors and nurses. “There is no effort to downsize the workforce,” he said. “None. We are trying as hard as we humanly can to fill every position that our agencies need to deliver those services. The governor expects that we delivery them. We are facing an historically difficult labor market. For reasons that I don’t understand it’s hard to attract people to work at this point in our historic.

While our fiscal outlook is good, we remain cautious, and remain disciplined in our budgeting.  I will continue working with my colleagues to help make sure we set realistic expectations for our revenue and spending policies to keep our state moving in the right direction.

As always, please feel free to reach out to me at the Capitol at 800-842-0363 or email me at

Special Session Supports CT Citizens

Tax Relief, Energy Assistance

State Representative Joe Gresko, (D)
121st Connecticut House District

Dear Neighbor,

As we head into the holiday season, we are reminded that many families in Connecticut are still facing added financial strain.

To continue our efforts in easing the burden on families, my colleagues and I today voted to extend sweeping tax relief for the state, provide additional funding for energy assistance programs, and continue premium pay for frontline workers.

How will this relief affect you?

$90M Cut in Gas Taxes

The current suspension of the 25-cent-per-gallon gas tax was set to expire on – November 30th. With numerous factors still causing increased gas prices, my colleagues and I voted to cut $90 million in gas taxes by extending the gas tax suspension for an additional month, then offering reduced gas tax prices through April 2023.


Gas Tax Schedule:

November 1, 2022 – December 31, 2022 –> $0

January 1, 2023 – January 31, 2023 –> $.05

February 1, 2023 – February 28, 2023 –> $.10

March 1, 2023 – March 31, 2023 –> $.15

April 1, 2023 – April 30, 2023 –> $.20


Free Bus Service

Free Bus Service was also scheduled to end on November 30th. The bill we passed extends the Free Bus Service through March 31st, 2023.

Because fares were halted in April 2022, collection must resume on April 1st, 2023, to remain compliant with federal rules


Energy Assistance

Every Connecticut family should have the resources they need to stay warm throughout the winter. I am proud to share that we approved $30 million in additional ARPA funding for the Low Income Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).

My colleagues and I remain committed to providing any and all assistance we can to ease any added burden from Connecticut Families. To learn more and apply for energy assistance, go to:


Learn More & Apply for LIHEAP

We also voted to increase funding for Operation Fuel, an additional energy assistance resource for qualifying low-income families. The increase in funding is sourced by requiring PURA to direct at least 95% of specified proceeds to Operation Fuel, which is expected to roughly double the resources available.

To learn more about Operation Fuel, or to apply for upcoming assistance beginning December 19th, please

Premium Pay for Frontline Workers

I was proud to support premium pay for the over 100,000 Connecticut workers who were on the front lines throughout the pandemic. Our goal is to provide the most low-income essential worker applicants with the majority of the financial aid.

As the year slowly ticks down, and we prepare for General Session in January, I am proud to see the work we could accomplish in a special session to assist families across Connecticut.

As always, please feel free to reach out to me at the Capitol at 800-842-0363 or email me at

Shop Small Stratford

State Representative Joe Gresko, (D)
121st Connecticut House District

Dear Neighbor,

November 26 is Small Business Saturday – a day to support small businesses and show how much we appreciate the entrepreneurs that make up the fabric of our vibrant communities.

As they work to recover from the devastating impact of the coronavirus pandemic, our patronage will help them not only recover, but prosper so they may in turn continue to contribute to the local and state economy.

To help those already in business or those working to start one, provides services for registering and managing compliance needs. The portal aims to encourage entrepreneurship and business growth while working to reduce some of the risk that comes with starting a business.

Our small businesses are at the heart of our communities. This holiday season, find a gift for everyone on your list and let’s keep the holiday spirit of giving alive by shopping, eating, and celebrating locally.

To find small businesses in your area, please click the button below.

As always, please feel free to reach out to me at the Capitol at 800-842-0363 or email me at

Special Session on Gas Tax

State Representative Ben McGorty, (R)
122nd Connecticut House District

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Dating back to March, House and Senate Republicans have called for a permanent end to the state gas tax and a similar cut to the diesel tax. Additionally, we’ve called to stop a new tax on trucks from being implemented on January 1st, 2023.

After considering our proposals, the majority opted to keep the tax on diesel, go through with a new tax on trucks, and settled for a temporary suspension to the gas tax to expire on December 1st.

Now, three weeks following an election, we are convening in a special session to extend the suspension of the state gas tax. This is a necessary step to fight rising fuel costs, but we must push to do more. You can follow the session live on the web.

The General assembly will convene for a special session on Monday, November 28th at 12:00 p.m.

Electricity Rates Increasing.

On Thursday of last week, Eversource and United Illuminating announced increases to electricity costs for ratepayers – nearly double what they paid one year ago.

The timing of this unwelcome announcement could not be worse for ratepayers, amidst skyrocketing costs of home heating oil, other utilities, and groceries, especially with the holidays approaching.

Many international and domestic factors affect the cost of energy in Connecticut, but we will ensure that in special session on Monday that we are doing everything possible as state legislators to bring financial relief to you and your families and find meaningful long-term solutions to lower costs.

Please do not hesitate to reach me regarding any state issues,

Contact Rep. Ben McGorty

860-240-8700 | 800-842-1423

State Rep. Ben McGorty, 122nd District

Connecticut Voted

Results of State Offices


Ned Lamont


Won a second term as Governor of Connecticut by defeating Bob Stefanowski, his Republican opponent 703,832 votes to 542,558.  Robert Hotaling an Independent, received 12,267 votes.

A little over a year after taking office any expectations for how his administration may have played out under normal conditions were tossed aside as the pandemic forced Lamont and other governors to shift their focus toward preventing hospitals from overflowing and a massive number of their constituents from dying. While Connecticut faced substantial challenges early on as a result of its proximity to New York City, the overall rate of deaths attributed to the virus is about the same as the U.S. average, and Lamont has been credited with overseeing one of the most effective vaccination rollouts in the country. The former Greenwich businessperson mostly self-funded his campaign, beginning with $6 million from his vast fortune. Lamont was cross-endorsed by the Working Families Party.

Running mate: Susan Bysiewicz won a second term as lieutenant governor alongside Lamont. Bysiewicz previously served as a state representative and secretary of the state.

In Stratford Lamont won with 18,046 votes.

U.S. Senate

Richard Blumenthal


Blumenthal won a third six-year term on Tuesday defeating Leora Levy of Greenwich, 717,977 to 534,459.  Blumenthal was declared the winner only 2 seconds after CT polls closed.

Senator Blumenthal, along with fellow Democrats, succeeded in pushing through the American Rescue Plan Act and a bipartisan gun-safety reform that was spearheaded by Connecticut’s other senator, Chris Murphy. A longtime Greenwich resident, was first elected attorney general in 1990, Blumenthal was instrumental in defending Connecticut’s first ban on military style rifles, and won billions of dollars in the historic 1998 national settlement with the tobacco industry. Blumenthal was cross-endorsed by the Working Families Party.

Stratford: Blumenthal was a +20 and 18,105

U.S. House of Representatives

3rd Congressional District


The district is in central Connecticut and encompasses New Haven and surrounding towns, including Stratford, Branford, Hamden, Milford, and Woodbridge.

Rosa L. DeLauro


DeLauro won reelection for a 17th term. In 16 consecutive reelection wins, she has captured no less than 58% of the vote. Rosa DeLauro received 134,365 votes, Lesley DeNardis, the Republican, received 98,329 votes; Amy Chai, Independent and Libertarian candidate, 4,003; Justin Paglino, Green Party, 1,879 votes.

DeLauro served as chair of the House Appropriations Committee for the 117th Congress — the second woman to hold the position. She supports abortion rights, stronger gun regulations, and health policy issues. Regarding health policy issues, she leans into women’s health matters and sponsoring and introducing related bills.

DeLauro won Stratford votes at +19, receiving 18,040 votes.

Statewide Races

Secretary of the State

Once considered an afterthought among statewide races, the Secretary of the State’s office has emerged with newfound relevance to many voters following unprecedented attempts to question the results of the 2020 election. No Republican has been elected to the office since the mid-1990s. The current office-holder, Mark Kohler, was appointed by Gov. Ned Lamont in June after Merrill stepped down early to care for her ailing husband.

Stephanie Thomas


Stephanie Thomas, serving her first term as a state representative from Norwalk, Westport and Wilton, got 681,601 votes versus Dominic Rapini, Republican, who got 530,730 votes and Cynthia Jennings, the Independent          candidate who got 26,499 votes.

Thomas sponsored legislation to expand absentee voting and implement automatic voter registration. On the campaign trail, she championed the state constitutional amendment to allow for early voting. (which passed).  Thomas lives in Norwalk and is the owner of a non-profit consulting business. Thomas was cross-endorsed by the Working Families Party.

Thomas won Stratford  +16 with 17,823  votes.

State Treasurer

Democrat Erick Russell, an attorney from New Haven who specializes in public financing, and state Rep. Harry Arora, a Greenwich Republican, are vying to be the state’s next Treasurer. The job, which entails managing Connecticut’s $45 billion in pension assets, is open following the surprise decision by Treasurer Shawn Wooden earlier this year to not seek re-election to a second term.

Erick Russell


Erick Russell, a former vice-chairman of the state’s Democratic Party, emerged victorious on Tuesday receiving 634,416      votes, defeating Harry Arora, the Republican, who received 550,209 votes; Jennifer Baldwin, Independent, 24,187 votes; JoAnna Laiscell, Libertarian        8,366 votes.

Russell focused his campaign on using the power of the treasurer’s office to advance social causes such as his proposal for a Connecticut Safe Harbor Fund. The fund would offer financial assistance to people who come to Connecticut for legally protected abortion care. He wants to partner with state treasurers across the country to create a national fund. He has called for “bringing greater stability, equity and fairness to Connecticut’s finances.” Russell was cross-endorsed by the Working Families Party.

In Stratford Russell won as +11 and received 17,800 votes.


The comptroller’s office was open after the departure of incumbent Kevin Lembo, who resigned at the end of last year due to health issues. Connecticut’s comptroller is responsible for providing accounting services, preparing financial reports and administering benefits to state employees, among other responsibilities.

Sean Scanlon


Scanlon received 679,757  votes to Mary Fay, the Republican’s 552,820 votes.  Scanlon, a four-term state legislator representing Guilford and Branford, was chair of the Connecticut Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee. Legislative accomplishments included a cap on insulin costs and a bipartisan state budget in 2021. Outside of the legislature, Scanlon also serves as executive director of Tweed-New Haven Airport. Scanlon is cross-endorsed by both the Independent and Working Families parties.

Stratford: Scanlon won +14 with 17,742 votes.

Attorney General

Connecticut’s chief civil legal officer, responsible for representing state agencies and protecting the rights of the state’s residents.

William Tong


Tong, the incumbent attorney general, was first elected in 2018, won 56.7% of the vote in Connecticut, receiving 695,018 votes defeating Jessica Kordas, Republican, 511,105 votes; A.P. Pascarella, Independent, 11,659 votes: Ken Krayeske, Green Party, 7,034 votes.

Tong spent his first term targeting the pharmaceutical industry and major social media corporations and frequently confronting then-President Donald Trump.  He has pledged to continue many of the fights he began over the past four years, including against companies he blames for contributing to the ongoing opioid epidemic. Before being elected attorney general, Tong spent 12 years in the state legislature, representing Darien and part of Stamford. Tong is cross-endorsed by the Working Families Party.

Stratford: Tong won by a +19 with 17,928 votes.

Ballot Measures

Early Voting

60 % of Connecticut voters voted YES to the Ballot Measure: “Should the state allow early voting?”