• Deja Vu, Part 2. More Bad Connecticut Democrat Party Legislation In 2024, For You. (HB5431)

    May 12, 2024
    Hartford Capitol. Public Domain.

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    Picture if you will the end of a state legislative session. The legislators, tired but fulfilled, congratulate each other, and relish the satisfaction of participating in a groundbreaking session of lawmaking and policy that sets a tone for fiscal stability, economic development, and citizen safety for the state. After a rousing address by the Governor, the legislature departs, basking in the glow of a job very well done in the best interests of the public.

    And in stark contrast, picture the end of the Connecticut State Legislature’s term on May 8, 2024.

    Since the late 1980's, Connecticut's State Legislature painfully ends every session after finding new ways of hemorrhaging more Connecticut Taxpayer money, taking away more personal freedoms, and helping wreck and destroy businesses in the state. The "short" 2024 legislative session was no different than all of the past 34 years of Democrat Party induced economic and societal decay and destruction. In true racketeering legislative style, the one bill that had no public hearing whatsoever and was summarily rammed through the wickets has been nicknamed by Democrats and labor leaders as "The Striking Workers Assistance Fund". It is HB 5431: AN ACT ESTABLISHING THE STABILIZATION SUPPORT AND ARPA REPLACEMENT FUND.

    Rather than deciphering needless legislative Greek, you, I, and many others may be wondering what this law is and of course wonder how much it will cost Connecticut taxpayers. The bill’s creator, Democrat / Socialist State Representative Manny Sanchez of New Britain, originally created a placeholder (aka dummy) bill that has been traditionally viewed as a piece of legislation that does not contain any content, later gets voted out of committee as a placeholder for last day or last minute legislation to be inserted, manipulated, and passed, over any objections by the minority party and of concerned right-thinking citizens watching from afar. Democrat/Socialist State Representative Manny Sanchez of New Britain facilitated the formation this deceitful work of pro-union labor/pro socialist-anti business rhetoric by changing the original name of the bill from “An Act Concerning Expenditures of the General Fund,” to “An Act Establishing the Stabilization Support and ARPA Replacement Fund.”

    By way of information, "(t)he amended bill allocates $3 million of unspent funds from the “unexpended balance of funds appropriated to State Comptroller — Fringe Benefits, for State employees Health Service Costs” to create a new account dubbed the “Connecticut Families and Workers account.” Additionally, it mandates the Comptroller to devise a plan on how to spend the funds to support low-income workers."

    In simple terms, what is the need for a "Connecticut Families and Workers account" and what does it entail and why? Don't most Connecticut families and workers work to support themselves unless they are disabled or ill, and pay some of the highest tax rates in the country? Once the $3 million dollars in unspent funds is finally expended, how much in new or higher taxes will be implemented to pay for this new socialistic program and how many more cronies and politically connected will be hired with tax dollars to administrate said fund?

    Also, from the limited information that has been provided, the bill forces Connecticut Taxpayers to pay for striking workers unemployment benefits. I wonder how this is legal given the current set up of the state's unemployment compensation benefits fund given the following statement:

    "You can receive benefits if you meet a series of legal eligibility requirements
    You must be monetarily eligible.
    You must be totally or partially unemployed.
    You must have an approvable job separation; the law imposes a disqualification for certain types of separations.
    You must meet certain weekly legal requirements; weekly requirements include being physically and mentally able to work, being available for and seeking work*, and filing your weekly claim for benefits on a timely basis.
    If you are identified as likely to exhaust unemployment benefits and are enrolled in the worker profiling and reemployment services program, you must fully participate in all assessment interviews, orientation, and referred reemployment services."


    Can anyone explain how striking workers have an "approvable job separation" and who is responsible for determining said approval? By allowing striking workers unemployment benefits, hasn't the state basically redefined "unemployment", and thus ruled the unemployment benefits compensation fund of Connecticut invalid by definition? I will therefore assume that those businesses currently paying into this fund should stop, as the legal definitions of "unemployment" have changed, especially since humble private businesses must now support striking workers that often receive striker’s benefits. When and if enacted into law, should this bill now go to the Connecticut Supreme Court to rule on its legality based on the state's new and bizarre definition of one being deemed "unemployed"?

    But as the sun sets over the Nutmeg State, we close the door on another legislative session where non-connected Connecticut citizens measure the success of the same by the smallest possible amount of damages sustained by acts of the Legislature. While bills concerning weighty matters like pizza and puppies become law, the reality 2024 echoes the same as years past, where laws comprised on hundreds of pages handed out in the middle of the night must be voted upon with no debate nor any actual reading of the bill. Connecticut Taxpayers who generally have no legal representation in the Legislature must accept without question the horrific, complacent, self-serving bills of King Ned Lamont The Unaccountable's omnipotent ruling Democrat Party. HB 5431 is just another step in the continuing economic quagmire of the Democrat conflagration of Connecticut Taxpayers and Businesses. And it is this scenario that the omnipotent and arrogant one-party rule Democrat Party demands re-election on in November 2024.

    Continuing along this path, Connecticut will be truly damned.

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    Bob Swick

    I am an Adjunct Professor of Business and Economics and have taught for 41 years for several different colleges and universities. I have a Bachelors of Science in Journalism and a Masters of Science in Economics. I have written about economics and political issues in my blog "Swick Speak" since 2006.

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