Stratford Needs a Strong Voice in Hartford

For too long, our district has not had the type of representation in Hartford that looks out for our interests.

Democrat Terry Masters is running for the 120th District seat currently held by Republican Laura Hoydick.

Back in August, Connecticut republicans held a rally to "turn the state red." (See related Patch article.)

Republican state Senator John McKinney said, "We are going in the wrong direction." He urged his audience to use the November election as an opportunity to course correct.

I couldn't agree more.

In many ways, WE ARE headed in the wrong direction -- a direction where
corporations have more say because they have more money. A direction where
millionaires don't have to pay their fair share of taxes. A direction where the
middle class -- you and me -- will have to work harder and harder just to make
ends meet.

My opponent is leading us in this same, wrong direction. When she had the chance to represent Stratford's workers and families, she voted NO to increasing the minimum wage by a quarter. She voted NO to establishing the CT Healthcare Partnership. She voted NO to renewable energy. And when she had the chance to decrease taxes on small businesses and establish a tax on bailout bonuses, she didn't vote at all.

That voice does not represent the Stratford I've known and loved for over a decade. That voice does not speak for you.

We've all been inundated with platitudes and sound bites this election. But, where's the real substance?

Voting against home health care workers' rights doesn't enhance their family life. Voting against a $20 marriage license fee to support services for domestic abuse victims doesn't improve their quality of life. Not even bothering to find out what existing state programs could do for Stratford residents -- like lower their utility bills each and every month through Energy Improvement Districts -- does not show a commitment to the people.

Where's the support for creating jobs and helping the local economy? I haven't heard of any support for the Shakespeare Theatre. Getting the theatre going would be an instant boost to our economy and small businesses in town.   

Where was the voice to make sure Stratford got its fair share of state educational funding? That silence cost us an estimated $83,000,000 over the past two incumbents. Other cities and towns received more funding, Stratford had to raise your property taxes to make up the difference.

That silence does not represent the Stratford I've known and loved for over a decade. That silence does not speak for you.

Voting against every budget and calling that voting against tax increases is deceptive. The republicans in Connecticut are following the same program as the republicans in Washington: chip away at every government program by defunding it, including Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. 

We've all seen in the past week what good government is. FEMA and the Small Business Administration, along with Connecticut's Department of Emergency Services & Public Protection, made preparations to deal with the storm and its after-effects. They've kept us informed; they have provided shelter and they are working on the long process of cleaning up and rebuilding.

Government is supposed to look out for the common good. We deserve good services for the taxes we pay and we deserve a representative who cares about our real, day-to-day needs.

I need your help on Tuesday, November 6.  It is very important that you use your power to vote. And if you decide I am deserving of your trust, I promise not to let you down.

As your State Rep, I will vote YES to protecting our workers with livable wages,
adequate sick leave, and equal pay for equal work. I will vote YES to closing tax loopholes and getting corporate special interests out of politics. I will vote YES to making smart and efficient use of our natural resources.

Doesn't this sound more like our Stratford?

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Vincent Caizzi November 03, 2012 at 03:24 PM
Terry, I wish you were running in my district so I could vote for you. That sounds more like the Stratford I want to see.
Chris November 03, 2012 at 03:39 PM
Since you started right out of the gate with the typical liberal class warfare attacks against businesses and millionaires, I can assume your "strong voice in Hartford" would just be used to agree with Malloy and the Dems on increased taxes, entitlement programs and anti business policies that HURT the middle class, not help it. I keep hearing liberals say, just like you, that rich people don't pay their "fair share", but I have yet to hear one define what that fair share is. So tell me Terry, how much of every dollar a "rich" person earns do you think you are entitled to? What amount? 25 cents of every dollar? 50 cents? 70 cents? It's one of those inconvenient truths that the vast majority of all tax money ALREADY comes from the wealthy. So how much more does Terry Masters propose the state of Connecticut take by force from the people who earn it? Give me a number, it's really that simple. And no, I'm not rich by any means. If I was I certainly wouldnt live in Stratford. But I know "rich people" and so-called millionaires. There are plenty of small business owners who's gross income is over $250k or even a million dollars a year. Of course, the liberals forget that that the guy who get's paid $100k to build a house spent $80k of it on materials, labor, taxes, and permits. I know a 40yr old "rich" business owner who makes over 250k a year and still lives with his parents because after his expenses there isnt enough left for an apartment. I'm sure glad I'm not that rich.
Steve Raguskus November 03, 2012 at 04:05 PM
Chris, the proposed tax increases on people making over 250k only apply to the amount over 250k in taxable income. So if someone is making over $1million, but has deductions that gets that down to $255,000, they would only see their taxes go up on $5,000 of their income. It's just restoring rates to what they were when Clinton was President, when the economy was strong and the budget was balanced. Do you think it's right that the truly rich can hide their profits offshore and pay a lower rate of tax than you pay? How can anyone think that's fair?
Chris November 03, 2012 at 04:31 PM
So Steve, answer the simple question I posed to Terry.... How much of every dollar a "rich" person makes do you think you are entitled to take by force? The fact is the rich already DO pay a lot more in taxes. Everyone is so quick to point out that the poor people and illegal immigrants still pay sales taxes and so forth, well so do the rich. And while we're complaining about paying $6000/yr in property tax,here in Stratford those rich folks are paying hundreds of thousands in property taxes every year. And even the liberal talking point about rich people paying a lower rate is generally not true. Here's something from USA Today, which is not exactly FOX News: http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/perfi/taxes/story/2011-09-20/buffett-tax-millionaires/50480226/1 "This year, households making more than $1 million will pay an average 29.1% of their income in federal taxes, including income taxes, payroll taxes and other taxes, according to the Tax Policy Center, a Washington think tank. Households making between $50,000 and $75,000 will pay an average of 15% of their income in federal taxes. Lower-income households will pay less. For example, households making between $40,000 and $50,000 will pay an average of 12.5% of their income in federal taxes. Households making between $20,000 and $30,000 will pay 5.7%." And that's just federal tax. That's not including property taxes, luxury and sales taxes on expensive cars, boats, planes and jewelry, or expensive clothes.
Chris November 03, 2012 at 04:33 PM
So once again: How much of every dollar a millionaire makes do you think it's "fair" to take by force?
Steve Raguskus November 03, 2012 at 05:03 PM
I'm not going to spend my day going back and forth with you, Chris. I told you what I think would be fair: return the tax rates for taxable income above $250,000/year, only on the amount above 250k, to what they were before Bush cut those rates. Pretty simple. Now, you didn't answer my question. Is it fair that the super wealthy get to hide money overseas and avoid paying their full share of taxes? If you think it is fair, then you should go and vote for someone who has profited from this practice, someone who hasn't paid his fair share. I'll vote for Obama and I'll vote for Terry Masters. I know I'm not going to convince you and I think you know you won't convince me. I just hope on Tuesday, you're in the minority.
Bob Cerani November 04, 2012 at 02:31 PM
I will not vote for Terry Masters,because of her part in Moveon. org. She will never get my vote unless she and all the Democrats smarten up.and stop the spending and taxing. We need bypartisan people in Connecticut, Not complete rule by one party. That's what is wrong with Connecticut politics.
Mike Reynolds November 04, 2012 at 09:34 PM
I find it disturbing that is involved with Moveon.org. Where did you find this information?
Chris November 04, 2012 at 09:52 PM
Mike Reynolds November 04, 2012 at 10:51 PM
Thanks...that does it for me.
Chris November 04, 2012 at 11:22 PM
Everyone should read that link if you want to know the real Terry Masters before she was running for office. If you really think an anti business "Occupy Wall Street" supporter is what is needed in Hartford to bring jobs back to CT, then by all means vote for her on Tuesday.
greg cann November 04, 2012 at 11:33 PM
"I'm thrilled to be here taking part in this national day of protest to help draw attention for the need for jobs and to improve the failing infrastructure in our towns and cities," said Masters. Promoting job growth & improving infrastructure = pro-business.
Chris November 05, 2012 at 12:16 AM
Yes Greg, the Occupy movement was all about creating jobs. BTW, would you like a good deal on some beach front property on the Jersey shore? Maybe after she loses Tuesday she can set up a tent and camp out at Shakespeare Theater for a few months. That should be at least as effective at reopening the theater as camping out in a park was at creating jobs.
Chris November 05, 2012 at 12:19 AM
Worst part of this is, I feel like even on the local level I am forced to vote for the lesser of 2 evils rather then the better candidate. No, I'm no huge fan of Laura Hoydick either, but putting Terry Masters in office instead is taking a step backwards, not forward.
Ariana November 05, 2012 at 09:16 PM
After reading through all the comments, it seems to me, Chris, that you have a personal issue or vendetta against Terry as your tone is nasty and accusatory hiding behind a common first name rather than constructive in any way. I too hope as Steve does that you will be in the minority tomorrow.
Bob Cerani November 16, 2012 at 04:49 AM


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