Anyone who receives Representative Kimberly Fiorello’s Capitol Update knows that when faced with how to vote on a proposed bill, Fiorello is guided by two questions: first, will this bill enhance individual freedoms or diminish them? And second, will this bill empower government or weaken it?
Deep in the pandemic last summer, I was moved by the bold, courageous efforts of the Greenwich Public Library, taking a stand against racism and facilitating its vast resources to educate our community. They hosted virtual events, and curated book lists for every age group to inform and encourage dialog and actions for a reimagined future of true equality.
Greenwich Pollinator Pathway in partnership with the Town Conservation Commission has commissioned a mural to be installed on Putnam Avenue across from the Greenwich High School football stadium
“I don’t know how you legislate equality” asserted Rep. Kimberly Fiorello at a recent meeting of the Judiciary Committee. Republican Fiorello was elected last fall to fill the 149th district Assembly seat vacated by retiring state legislator Livvy Floren, at the time considered the most moderate Republican in the CT General Assembly (though her voting record was anything but progressive).
Commenting on language in the bill to legalize marijuana that includes remedying and preventing inequity and discrimination based on race, ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation, Rep. Fiorello claimed, “bills can’t do this; it’s not possible.”
I am disappointed to hear the wild doomsday predictions and mischaracterizations from some of our Greenwich elected officials regarding Connecticut Senate Bill 1024 (specifically First Selectman Camillo, Rep. Fiorello, and Rep. Arora). This bill, which addresses our state-wide housing and affordability crisis, will not upend our town’s character. Rather, it will nudge Greenwich to do what we claim in our own Plan of Conservation and Development (“POCD”) that we WANT to do: offer more diverse and affordable housing. In fact, this bill will nudge Greenwich back toward the policies that it used to embrace and that created our vibrant town. It will allow people like my older friends, who have lived in Greenwich for decades, to downsize and still stay in town. It will allow my adult kids to think about returning to live in their hometown. The common-sense policies in the bill would enhance property values, protect the environment, make Connecticut towns competitive with other forward-looking towns, bring vibrancy to our downtown, and bring new tax-paying residents.
The Greenwich United Way recently completed its Needs Assessment 2020, which is a community-wide assessment of the human service needs and assets, designed to help make data-informed actions for the public good. The Needs Assessment offers extensive data as well as analysis of where community needs and assets match well and where there is a gap.