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Posted inJustice, Politics

CT Dreamers seeking commitment stage sit-in at Murphy’s office

WASHINGTON — Eighteen young undocumented activists from Connecticut staged a sit-in at Sen. Chris Murphy’s Senate office Tuesday, demanding the Democratic lawmaker vote “no” on a must-pass budget bill this week if Congress fails to approve protection for the youths known as “dreamers.” Murphy said he could not make that commitment because it would deprive him of political leverage.

Posted inMoney, Politics

Senate, House approve tax plan CT lawmakers call disastrous for state

Updated at 1:15 a.m. Wednesday
WASHINGTON — With Vice President Mike Pence presiding, the Senate early Wednesday approved a massive tax overhaul on a strict party-line vote, deepening the partisan divide in Congress. Connecticut’s Democrats joined all others in their party to vote against the tax plan, calling it a giveaway to the rich that would hurt working Americans.

Posted inCT Viewpoints

If education justice is the goal, don’t follow Massachusetts

Massachusetts, like Connecticut, has long boasted top-performing public schools (“Massachusetts Is Like Connecticut, But Does a Better Job Educating the Poor,” Dec. 11, 2017). Students in both states scored at or near the top on national tests before the start of high-stakes testing. But then, as now, there have been huge differences in academic outcomes linked to race, income, language and disability. These gaps mirror the two states’ large (and growing) gaps in wealth and opportunity, as well as glaring inequities in school funding between rich and poor districts. … Rather than follow Massachusetts’ lead and impose more tests, Connecticut should implement an assessment system using projects and portfolios that promote and measure deeper, broader learning.

Posted inCT Viewpoints

Some analysis, please, on tolls versus higher gasoline tax

We need a serious comparison of the costs and benefits of tolls vs. higher gas taxes.  Some obvious issues are…
Costs: It should cost next to nothing to raise gas taxes, while tolls might involve significant capital and operating costs.
Equity: It would seem fair that all drivers pay a share of maintaining and improving roads, not just ones using particular highways.
Contribution from drivers from out-of-state: How would the two options compare?

Congestion pricing: Would a toll system really be put at locations that enable effective congestion pricing?  Border tolls would not do so.  Could congestion pricing really be fair and effective in a state with limited alternative transportation options and limited number of lanes on highways?