Tag Archives: Connecticut

Beleaguered Connecticut Taxpayers Saddled with More Debt To Subsidize The Rich and Business

Governor Dan Malloy

Governor Dan Malloy

Governor Dannel P. Malloy announced new state spending that will add an additional $2.7 million in debt on to the backs of Connecticut’s middleclass taxpayers.  After crushing families with the two highest tax increases in Connecticut history ol’ Danny boy has found another way to spend the taxpayer’s hard earned dollars to subsidize big business and luxury automobile buyers.

While the average Connecticut family struggles to stretch their family budget and pay an ever-increasing burden of taxes.  Dan Malloy finds it necessary to give away up to $5,000 to buyers of fuel cell power vehicles, which is not something found on the average family shopping list.  No this is tax money used to subsidize the wants of rich.

In a statement issued by the Governor he said this will “support local retailers by helping lower the price of electric vehicles, making them more competitive”.  Really Governor, is that the best use for taxpayer dollars?  Does the average family need to support local car dealers to insure they make a profit selling cars?

While the legislature is facing a 1.3-BILLION-dollar deficit in the next budget season apparently, Governor Malloy feels it is necessary to give away taxpayer’s hard earned money to those that can afford NEW CARS!!!  Remember this is your money, paid to the state in good faith that it will be spent wisely.

So, what does the Democratic Majority leadership in the State Legislature have to say about this squandering of tax dollars?  Nothing! Their silence is deafening.  They are only talking about new tolls on highways, new sources of revenue and cuts to cities and towns that will require the local government to raise taxes to fund local requirements for State mandates.

This is not the first-time Dan Malloy has fleeced the taxpayers in this fashion.  The Governor was somewhat bragging over his success when he said, “Since the start of the program in May 2015, more than $2 million has been issued in rebates or reserved for the purchase or lease of 960 electric vehicles in Connecticut”.

This subsidy has been one of the shovels digging Connecticut taxpayers into an ever-deeper hole of debt and this round of subsidies is more of the same.  When will we learn to stop digging?  When will we learn that when you cannot afford what you already have it is time to stop new spending?  This is not an investment for our future this is insanity in the present, this is irresponsible and objectionable.  This is detrimental to every taxpayer and family in Connecticut.  Simple put this is unacceptable.

 

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HOW DO YOU SAY GOOD BY?

He was a soldier and a good man

He was a soldier and a good man

Tomorrow I will say good bye to a friend, it will not be easy, he was an inspiration, and he was an example for other men. Bob was a good man, giving, loyal and kind.

We met in the world of politics. Bob had his thoughts, ideas and opinions and every one was delivered with a smile. When the Republican Party needed a volunteer for most any task Bob would be stepping forward, ready, willing and able to serve. Bob was a good man, he always served with a smile.

In private moments we shared our thoughts about military service. Bob was proud of his military service and always supported those that served. If you knew Bob long you were also aware of the Nike missile and Bob’s experience. He was a soldier, he was a good man.

Bob never forgot the men that served, and he took an active role with the American Legion. The traditional Memorial Day parade in town had the mark of Bob’s organizational skills all over it. He was a proud solder and he was a good man.

If there was need in the neighborhood Bob was always willing to do his part. At one time or another over 35 years he served as their President, Secretary, Treasurer and even Tax Collector. Yes he was a smiling Tax Collector and he was a good man.

Bob had also served the Town of Coventry as a member of the Coventry HUD Home Rehabilitation Committee, the Coventry Planning and Zoning Commission, and the Board of Assessment Appeals. I recently spoke with Bob, knowing he was facing some difficult challenges. I asked about his participation on the Board of Assessment Appeals and another run for the office. I will never forget his answer, he was clear, he was determined and he was memorable when he said, “I want to serve”. Four little words that spoke so clearly to define the man, and he was a good man.

The last time we spoke, we sat alone, friends sharing some old stories and talked about challenges ahead. It was then I saw the tender side of my friend, raw with emotion he conveyed to me his undying love and appreciation for his wife, Bev. He told me about her loving care that had brought him through some tough times recently. It was another inspirational moment, another time when Bob’s words had more meaning than I think he even realized. He was a loving man, a friend and an inspiration, he was a good man.

Rest in Peace Bob Kramer you have served your fellow man well, you were a good man.

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WHERE THERE IS SMOKE THERE IS FIRE

Iphone shots 022-1It all started with an image, some promises, and dreams of better days. All it took was a wisp of creative imagination, some smoke and mirrors, a few false promises and a willing populous, ready to float like clouds through dreamland with the winds of hope and change upon their back.

What voters got was more like a wobbly three legged wooden stool. Dan Malloy as Governor, Brendan Sharky as Speaker of the House and Martin Looney as President Pro Tempore of the Senate.

Their first order of business was to deliver to the taxpayer’s of Connecticut the largest tax increase in Connecticut. Not exactly what the people were told was going to happen or what they thought they voted for, but facts don’t always match political promises.

Their second order of business was the recent creation of the second largest tax increase in Connecticut history. This coming within 6 months of Dan Malloy telling the taxpayers he made the hard choices, fixed the budget and would not be raising their taxes. Poof, the promises went up in smoke.

Where there is smoke there is fire. Today there is a firestorm of negative reaction rocking the foundations of employment and family finances across Connecticut. The legs of the wooden stool are feeling the heat of flames.

Time to fix the problem? No, remember these are tax and spend Democrats. It is time to reach for the taxpayer’s wallet to purchase fire protection for the wobbly wooden stool instead of protection for the people.

Last week the House Democratic caucus hired the Hartford public relations firm of McDowell and Jewett Communications to review their public relations operation. Of course this will be paid for with taxpayer’s dollars, after all it is time for local elections and the Democrats will need all the smoke, mirrors and Vaseline they can find to slide by the voters in this election cycle.

The funds will come from a budget provided to each legislative party caucus to hire, a legal team, legislative assistants and communications staff, functions normally associated with doing the work of the people. This reviewing of the public relations operations, is more akin to a study of how to put out the fire that threatens the wobbly stool for the tax and spend Democratic caucus.

For many taxpayers and their families the burden of increase government spending is a growing concern. This fall many communities will have a choice, more tax and spend or a new policy, a financial path followed like your family budget with restraint, reason and common sense.

We will all choose our seats. You can take your chances on another tax and spend wobbly wooden stool or a solid Republican oaken bench, you can sit on the sidelines or you can get in the game by taking the time to vote. The decision is yours.

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TIME TO TAKE A NEW ROAD AND NOT A DIVIDED HIGHWAY

The brightest future for our towns, cities, states and indeed our nation is found within the Republican Party.  While the Republican Party is diverse in thoughts and opinions there is a common thread of values founded in the strength of the individual and the responsibilities we each hold as citizens and neighbors.

Make no mistake there are fringe elements in both the Republican Party and the Democratic Party.  The fringe road to the liberal left or the conservative right are not the paths to follow.  Both are narrow paths of division and intolerance.

The strength of our nation is found in the roots of our being.  We are a melting pot of cultures, beliefs and opinions.  The founding fathers understood the strength found in unification, walking not a narrow path but a wide path of inclusion and protection for an individual’s thoughts, beliefs and responsibilities.

Found in our Constitution and Bill of Rights are protections for individuals of diverse opinion.  The founding fathers recognized the need for limits on government.  They included restrictions with a system of checks and balances designed to insure the preservation of the inalienable rights of the citizens.

Today, too many folks look to government as our strength and not to the individual citizens. Today we find leaders willing to divide our citizens into special interest groups each with their hand out for government support.  Pandering politicians picking the pockets of taxpayers to pad a base of support is no way to run government.  Our goal should be to unify and build together a stronger foundation to support a better future.

The solution for inefficient government is not found in a coalition of special interests.  The special interests are the root of the problem, not the solution.  The solution is found within each of us as individuals, the solution is found in our commonality, our responsibilities and our own efforts.

The very foundation of the Republican Party has always been built on the belief in the strength of the individual over government.  This is why the best road for our future is found within the Republican Party.  It is found in the grounded thinking of pragmatic conservatives.  They provide a bonding commonality based on practical and reasonable logic with which to set policy.

If we are to prosper as a community or nation we can no longer embrace tax and spend government digging us deeper in debt, and reallocating our money for their special interest spending.  It is time to endorse and elect logical, realistic and reasonable thinkers.  Reasonable budgets are like household budgets they must be constructed with common sense, leaders must be pragmatic.  Their budgets should have limits just as your household has limits after all it really is your money.

It is time to elect pragmatic conservatives to serve in government.  It is time for a realistic approach to spending.  We need a common sense practical approach, our budgets should be based on logical rational facts.  The time for budgets based on intentions, hopes and dreams is past it was the wrong road.  It is time for pragmatic conservative Republicans.

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Manchester Mascot An Honor To Our Past

Opining Quill Response

Opining Quill Response

Manchester Connecticut has a rich history dating back before there was a United States of America and long before the arrival of English settlers. The area now known as Manchester was a camping and hunting ground for Native Americans known as the Podunk.

Before recorded written history, there is evidence of Native Americans living across not only Manchester but all of the lands we now call the United States. When the Pilgrims arrived in 1620 they first encountered Wampanoag Indians from the Nauset tribe in what is now Eastham, Mass. It is well documented that the early settlers learned to plant corn from the Native Americans. A crop that significantly helped the pilgrims survive in this harsh new land.

From the early days of this nation to this day the contribution of culture and service to this country by Native Americans is significant. The Navajo Code Talkers of World War II provided our military with a method of communication that proved to be priceless. To honor and recognize Native Americans is not only justified it is politically correct.

The history of the lands within the boundary of what is now the west end of Manchester was home to Indian settlements in areas we know as Hillstown Road, Olcutt Street and West Center Street. The early English settlers adopted some of the language and names from the Indians. We can look to the Native American word Hocquaun meaning hook-shaped or crooked river to find where the name of the Hockanum River came from. Even the name of our State, Connecticut comes from the Native American language.

Manchester High School athletic teams have been known as the Manchester Indians for generations, it is a tribute to the Native Americans that originally occupied the lands upon which the school previously and currently is located. The mascot for any school should reflect some of the history, it must be something that is held in high esteem by the community, it is a symbol which not only the students but the community can look to proudly.

Manchester High School could have chosen the farmer, weaver or even the silkworm as a mascot. Who would question as politically correct a “farmer” mascot? Yet today some would question the selection on an Indian as the mascot.

If one understands the honor and esteem a community places in a mascot they understand the true nature of the importance the mascot holds within history of the community. In the case of Manchester High School when a cheering section chants “We are the Indians, mighty mighty Indians, everywhere we go people want to know who we are, so we tell them” they are endorsing the roots of the community. The original inhabitants are remembered and their strength as a culture is recalled. The Podunks were known as a peaceful people and their history is our history, their history is a key building block in the foundation of the Manchester we know today.

Today there are some folks that although well intentioned, may be misguided in their interpretation and understanding of the Manchester High School Indian Mascot. Those that would call for a change in the mascot are calling for a revision of history. They are asking that we remove an honored part of our heritage, a building block and a memory for generations of Manchester alumni. They are asking the community to take away a position of leadership, esteem and reverence the current Manchester Indian holds.

I submit it would be far better to educate the misguided to understand the historical importance of the Native American, Indian people in Manchester. It would be far better if those that want to replace the current mascot with some less meaningful symbol would instead join with the generations of the past and remember the significance of the Indian mascot.

Perhaps it is time for a block of instruction within the school curriculum at the middle school level to introduce the Manchester Indian to the next generations so that as they enter high school they will not only understand the contribution and importance of the original inhabitants but also take great pride in being known as a “Manchester Indian”. Calling ourselves, Manchester Indians shows our understanding and kinship with our historical roots. Manchester alumni are proud of those roots and the next generations should share in that pride.

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Remembering the Sacrifice of 6,809

As of May 23, 2014 6,809 Americans have sacrificed their lives in the wars of Afghanistan and Iraq. In Somers Connecticut they are honored and remembered this weekend in a display known as, Field of Flags.
A single American Flag remembering each life has been placed in neat rows along Main Street. There is also a list of all 6,809 names listed by state of residence.

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Response To Closing Quill

Opining Quill Response

Opining Quill Response

In reviewing comments and remarks concerning the previous posting of the Opining Quill it would seem that some clarification may be helpful to some readers.  While comments and remarks on subject matter and content are appropriate and encouraged in response to posting of the Opining Quill remarks or comments concerning individuals or personal attacks are not appropriate.

The post was written to stimulate discussion on the priorities of public spending. Grant money awarded by the State and spent by a municipality or government agency deserves the same scrutiny as money spent by a local government.  Endorsing government waste or poor priorities in spending, by using grant money, is a good example of a lack of respect for the responsibility of due diligence given to elected officials when they take office.  In this case it we have a dichotomy of responsibility which is confusing to many people.

The Town Manager has the responsibility to inform the Town Council of the opportunities presented by available State grants.  The decision on priorities for spending of those tax dollars is made at the State level.  The dichotomy on the local level exists when the Town Council is presented with a spending plan that by design contradicts local priorities or their responsibility to taxpayers to perform due diligence, to assure that the spending is in the best interest of local taxpayers.

That being said a short term local benefit may not be a road to long term benefit to the community or society.  To illustrate this dichotomy on the local level we need only to look at the history of our Town Council and reaction to another State grant proposal.

The Town Council received the opportunity to accept a State grant for a sidewalk proposed to run from the post office to the high school.  In reviewing the proposal and doing due diligence the design of the project was determined to be flawed and wasteful; it did not meet standards for public safety as judged by the Town Council.  The grant was rejected; the project was redesigned, eliminating the dangers to public safety.  When the grant was rejected the Town Council received criticism for rejecting a State grant or as some critics called it, “free money”.  In retrospect the decision provided the opportunity to redesign the project, and provide a much improved sidewalk project which was still eligible for State grant money.  Today we have a tangible example of a better community improvement that would not exist if the due diligence and courage of the members of that Town Council had not been present to reject a State grant in favor of a higher priority, a better project and respect for taxpayer dollars.

Grant money from the State is limited in how it can be spent and often has restrictions or limited targets upon which it can be spent.  That does not mean, it has to be spent.  Just because the State is willing to spend the money does not relinquish the local municipality from doing their own due diligence to protect the taxpayers from wasteful spending.

In this case the Town Manager had the responsibility to present the opportunities to the Town Council, it is not his responsibility nor within his authority to act.  That is the role of a professional Town Manager and that is what was done.  It was the responsibility of the Town Council to evaluate the opportunity before it, to perform due diligence and to act in the best interest of the taxpayers.  It is their action and the dichotomy of their responsibility that should be the point of any discussion.

The leadership of the Town Council has changed since both of the decisions above have been made; it is time for the new leadership to look at the dichotomy of responsibility when offered grant opportunities.  The new leadership deserves a chance to earn the respect and endorsement of the voters, but they must be mindful of their responsibility to perform due diligence before authorizing any spending be it funding from local tax receipts or State grant money.

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