The construction of the new busway will cause an exit to be closed this weekend near the state Capitol.
The eastbound off-ramp on Interstate 84 will be shut down at exit 48A for the entire weekend, according to state officials.
The closure is scheduled to begin at about 10 p.m. Friday, and motorists will be directed to take a detour to the adjacent Capitol Avenue exit, which is heavily traveled on weekdays among those headed to the state Capitol and the adjacent Legislative Office Building.
The exit’s off-ramp is scheduled to be all clear by 5 a.m. Monday as commuters start heading back to the Capitol and nearby offices.
Backed by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, the busway has been heavily criticized by some lawmakers and Senate Republican leader John McKinney of Fairfield. The most recent criticism came during the Republican gubernatorial debate at The Hartford Courant, where McKinney referred to the project as the “busway to nowhere that nobody is going to use.” Continue reading
Gov. Dannel Malloy is constantly getting hammered by Republicans for being one of those free-spending Democrats who try to bolster their reelection chances by handing out all kinds of taxpayer dollars for local projects.
Of course, there can be exceptions. Take, for example, the cool $1.5 million state grant that just happens to be going to a public golf course in the district of state House GOP Leader Lawrence F. Cafero Jr.
House Republican Leader Lawrence F. Cafero Jr.
The money for improvements to the Oak Hills Park golf course in Cafero’s home base of Norwalk is expected to be approved next week by the state Bond Commission. Malloy, who is facing a tough fight to win reelection to a second term this year, is chairman of the bond panel and decides what projects get to be voted on by that august body.
Cafero, like Republican gubernatorial candidates Tom Foley and John McKinney, has often blasted Malloy for his free-spending ways. On the other hand, Cafero has essentially given up his own ambitions to sit in the governor’s chair and is retiring from the legislature after this year.
This time around, Cafero is thanking the Democratic governor and calling the decision on the Oak Hills Park course “welcome news.”
Republicans are questioning the accuracy of the first campaign commercial that is currently being aired on stations across the state by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s campaign.
The 60-second commercial credits Malloy with creating jobs, raising the minimum wage, and using “spending cuts and new revenue” to reduce the state’s budget deficit. The commercial does not mention that the state’s personal income, sales, corporate profits, estate, alcohol, cigar and cigarette taxes were raised in 2011 to help close the budget gap.
“The revision of history has begun,” said Senate Republican leader John McKinney of Fairfield. “This ad should win the award for “best fictional documentary in a political campaign” at a film festival.”
McKinney, who is running in the August 12 Republican primary against Greenwich business executive Tom Foley, said, “A non-fictional analysis of the Malloy record would have to account for the $2.8 billion projected deficit he has handed us, the largest tax increase ever hoisted on the people of Connecticut and the $115 million give-away to a billionaire-run hedge fund. It’s sad that Governor Dannel Malloy thinks so little of the people of Connecticut that he would insult their intelligence in this way.”
Devon Puglia, a spokesman for the state Democratic Party, responded, “The fiction so far in this campaign is the series of absurd, impossible-to-keep promises John McKinney’s been making. Truth is, Connecticut’s making progress, much to John McKinney’s and the GOP’s chagrin.” Continue reading
State Democrats have filed their second complaint in two weeks against Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Foley regarding the filing of campaign expenses.
The Democrats charge that Foley has not disclosed the expenses to create a television commercial that is currently on the air on multiple stations across the state. The Democrats say that “no payments or obligations regarding advertisement production costs have been disclosed in Mr. Foley’s most recent filings” on July 10.
Those production costs to create the ad “typically run in the tens of thousands of dollars,” the party said.
In the same manner that the Foley campaign rejected the first Democratic complaint made to the State Elections Enforcement Commission, Foley campaign spokesman Christopher Cooper said, “This is another attempt by Governor Malloy and his surrogates to distract attention from his failed leadership and his terrible record as governor.”
He added, “The Foley campaign has been working with the SEEC on nearly everything we do, and we are confident that we are in compliance with all SEEC procedures.”
Citing state law, a spokesman for the SEEC, attorney Joshua Foley, said the commission cannot confirm or deny whether it received a complaint and also could not comment on the details.
It’s only July, nearly four months before the election, but Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy is already going on the air with his first TV ad of the 2014 cycle.
The one-minute spot, titled “Tough Times,” highlights one of Malloy’s perceived strengths: that he’s good in a crisis. A March, 2013 Quinnipiac University poll found that more than 75 percent of voters approve of the way he handled both the Newtown school shooting and Storm Sandy. When asked if Malloy was a strong leader in a crisis, 67 percent of those polled said yes.
The commercial references historic storms, an unprecedented budget crisis and “unimaginable evil let loose in a school.”
It ends with the tagline: Strength. Conviction. Progress.
The ad was produced by AKPD Message and Media and will run in the Hartford-New Haven and New York City media markets. (The New York market covers Fairfield County.) The total airtime purchased from July 14 to July 20 is $254,562.
The controversy over Hillary Clinton’s $250,000 fee to deliver a speech at UConn in April has followed Gov. Dannel P. Malloy to Nashville.
Malloy, who is in the Music City to attend the National Governors Association summer meeting, was asked about Clinton’s fee. The speech was paid for by the UConn Foundation, not the university.
“Private foundations have the right to spend their money the way that they want to,” Malloy said, according to a tweet from Time political reporter Zeke Miller. “I don’t think it would be a controversy if she weren’t a likely candidate for president “
BY MATTHEW Q. CLARIDA
Gov. Dannel Malloy was in Waterbury on Monday, and he talked with reporters about his reelection bid. Malloy was asked almost exclusively about Republican rival Tom Foley, even though Foley must first win a primary battle against Sen. John McKinney of Fairfield on August 12 before having a potential rematch against Malloy.
Longtime state Capitol reporter Paul Hughes asked Malloy how much of a battleground Waterbury will be in this fall’s election.
“Oh hell, the whole state’s a battleground for God’s sake,” Malloy responded. “Come on! We’re going to be all over the state in campaigns. That’s what campaigns are, and it’s a battle for the future of the state of Connecticut. If you believe, as I do, that we need job growth, and certainly I can stake a claim to about 55,000 private-sector jobs having been created as a down payment, then we’re going to have this battle. That’s what campaigns are. They’re conversations about the future. We’re making and we’ll continue to make and have made solid recommendations, and we’re going to continue to do that.”
Malloy was then asked about his prospects in Waterbury, a city where Republicans traditionally receive many more votes than in hard-core Democratic cities like New Haven and Hartford. Continue reading
BY MATTHEW Q. CLARIDA
Tenet Healthcare Group, a for-profit hospital manager, has reached an agreement to acquire St. Mary’s Hospital in Waterbury.
The terms of the deal have not yet been released, but reports this morning indicate that Tenet plans to bring a significant monetary commitment to the table, taking care of the hospital’s debt obligations and funding its pension program. The Waterbury Republican-American also reported that the hospital’s charitable foundation will receive significant support from Tenet.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy praised the deal.
“Saint Mary’s Hospital provides a great benefit to the Greater Waterbury region, and it is a top priority to make sure that residents in this area continue to have access to the health care services they need,” Malloy said. “The delivery of health care across our nation has been an extraordinarily complex and multifaceted issue, which only added to the need for everyone involved to be thorough and mindful of the long-term effects of a major transaction such as this. I am glad to have signed legislation last month that helped today’s announcement come to fruition, and I look forward to working with Tenet and Saint Mary’s to ensure a smooth process that continues to serve the Waterbury community.”
BY MATTHEW Q. CLARIDA
“Who Wants to Be a Millionaire,” the popular quiz show that has inspired blockbuster films and emerged as a piece of modern Americana, began production last week from studios in Stamford.
The television show has also brought 150 new jobs to the state, according to a press release from the office of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy. Malloy called the move “just the latest example of how our efforts to build Connecticut’s television and digital media industry have paid off tremendously over the last three years.”
The relocation is not a complete freebie for the state. Millionaire’s producer, Disney’s Valleycrest Productions, is eligible for tax credits of up to 30 percent for production expenses.
Connecticut has become something of a destination for television and film production. NBC Sports opened a 33 acre campus in Stamford in January of 2013, and ESPN–the self proclaimed “Worldwide Leader in Sports”–is headquartered in Bristol. Both networks have received tax considerations under Malloy’s controversial First Five program.
Gov. Dannel Malloy took time out from his busy schedule Tuesday to celebrate the three-year-old law that made Connecticut the first state in the nation to mandate paid sick leave for service workers.
What Malloy didn’t feel particularly comfortable with were questions about why lots of voters still tend to focus on what his critics say is Connecticut’s ongoing economic malaise, or the poor rankings this state gets for its business climate.
“I’m not using that word,” Malloy said when asked about that perception of economic malaise. He insisted things are getting better, sometimes in ways that don’t register with many voters, and that “the numbers are moving in the right direction.”
Malloy, a Democrat now engaged in a very tough campaign for reelection to a second term, pointed to this state’s first-in-the-U.S. paid sick leave law for service industry employees workers as an example of how his administration has benefited women, low-wage workers and the middle class.