Two proposed bills – one allowing union re-certification elections and another ensuring labor contract language complies with the Supreme Court’s Janus decision – were filed with the House of Representatives and referred to the Labor and Public Employees Committee. An...read more
Four times in the past ten years Democratic lawmakers and union officials have tried to pass a bill restricting businesses from talking to their employees about unionization efforts only to have Attorney General George Jepsen inform them in 2011 -- and again in 2018...read more
Greenwich Senator Alexandra Bergstein started off the legislative session by filing a bill to authorize the Connecticut Department of Transportation to put electronic tolls on Connecticut’s highways. Proposed Bill No. 102 would amend state statutes to require the DOT...read more
As some legislative leaders call for tolls on Connecticut’s highways, new revenue estimates from the state show transportation funding is expected to increase by $310 million by 2023. The Office of Fiscal Analysis and the Office of Policy and Management released their...read more
In the six months since the controversial Supreme Court decision in Janus v. AFSCME, state employee unions gained 2,952 members but lost income from 11 percent of state employees, according to a comparison of union membership numbers between April and December of...read more
Democrat Leaders in the Connecticut House and Senate indicated they would be willing to reduce the gasoline tax in order to gain public and political support for tolls.Senate President Martin Looney, D-New Haven, said he would be willing to cut gasoline...read more
The Policy Corner With Scott Shepard
A minimum-wage increase is likely coming. It should arrive in the form of a home-rule option to raise the rate to some maximum and should be offset by cuts in regulatory costs on the hardest-hit businesses.
The Fitch Files
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On A Side Note: Policy Mixed with Pop Culture (and a little humor)
In conceding that a House vote on a tolls bill would likely not happen this year, House Speaker Joe Arsimowicz said, “When you have people that want to paint the picture that Connecticut sucks at all costs and any new thing is going to force people out of the state, it’s a tough narrative to overcome.”read more
A light-hearted “Toll Troll” demonstration by Yankee Institute at the Capitol on Tuesday drew media attention and ire of House leadership.read more
FAQ's About How a Bill Becomes Law
1: A Bill Has Been Proposed. What Happens Next?
Initial bill proposals are really just concept bills with general language. Hundreds of bill will be proposed at the beginning of session, often about the same topics. The bills are referred to the appropriate committee, which then decides whether or not to take up the bill or possibly combine it with other similar bills. The committee may have the bill drafted into legal language before bringing it up for a public hearing. Or, the committee could choose to have a "subject matter hearing" in which the general concept of the bill is put out for public comment and debate.
2. How Can My Voice be Heard at a Public Hearing?
Any member of the public is able to make his or her voice heard at a public hearing. When the public hearing is scheduled, members of the public show up to the public hearing, give their opinion to lawmakers and answer any questions committee members may have. Individuals can also submit written testimony through the committee's webpage. After the public hearing the committee will vote whether or not to pass the bill out of committee.
3. The Bill Has Passed out of Committee, What Happens Next?
Depending on the nature of the bill and if there will be any significant costs associated with the legislation, it may be referred to a second committee. Otherwise, the bill will be checked for constitutionality and consistency with law. The Office of Fiscal Analysis will determined the costs associated with the bill and the Office of Legislative Research will produce a "plain English" explanation of the bill. The clerk then assigns the bill a number and it can then be taken up for a vote in either the House or Senate.
4. If One Chamber Passes the Bill, Then What?
If the bill passes in one chamber, it is then referred to the other chamber. This does not necessarily mean it will be voted on, however. Amendments to the bill may be debated and added, and the bill may have to be referred to another committee. However, if both chambers agree on the bill and all its amendments, the bill is then sent to the governor for approval or veto. A governor's veto can be overruled by a 2/3 majority in the House and Senate.
5. What Can I Do Right Now?
You can write or call the members of the committee to express your opinion. You can say if you want a bill to be brought for a public hearing or not; you can express support or opposition to any of the bills they are considering. Below is a list of legislative committees and links to their webpages. You can also keep up to date through Yankee Institute's email list.
- Aging Committee
- Appropriations Committee
- Banking Committee
- Committee on Children
- Commerce Committee
- Education Committee
- Energy and Technology Committee
- Environment Committee
- Executive and Legislative Nominations Committee
- Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee
- General Law Committee
- Government Administrations and Elections Committee
- Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee
- Housing Committee
- Human Services Committee
- Insurance and Real Estate Committee
- Internship Committee
- Judiciary Committee
- Labor and Public Employees Committee
- Joint Committee on Legislative Management
- Planning and Development
- Public Health Committee
- Public Safety and Security
- Legislative Regulation Review Committee
- Transportation Committee
- Committee on Veterans' Affairs
The Yankee Institute for Public Policy Studies is a research and citizen education organization founded in 1984 under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service code. As one of America’s oldest state-based think tanks, Yankee develops and advocates for free market, limited government public policy solutions in Connecticut.