Dialogue: 163 Martin Looney

May 20th Dialogue Show

 

 This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews the top Democratic leader in the State Senate, Sen. Martin Looney of New Haven. 

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews the top Democratic leader in the State Senate, Sen. Martin Looney of New Haven. 

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews the top Democratic leader in the State Senate, Sen. Martin Looney of New Haven.  In the program, Looney reviews the just-completed 2018 legislative session.  He discusses what’s inside the bipartisan state budget package.  Looney also talks about several key measures that failed to pass, including highway tolls, legalization of marijuana, and a bill to combat sexual harassment.

Dialogue: 162 Brenda Watson

May 13th Dialogue Show

 Brenda Watson, executive director of Operation Fuel.

Brenda Watson, executive director of Operation Fuel.

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Brenda Watson, executive director of Connecticut’s Operation Fuel.  In the program, Watson discusses the “add-a-dollar” program on utility bills that allows consumers to help their neighbors who may have difficulties paying their electric, gas, or water bills. Watson explained that May is the end that the utilities winter “no shut off” protection ends, putting many families at risk unless they can pay their bills.

Dialogue: 161 Robert Klee

May 6th Dialogue Show

 Robert Klee, Commissioner of the State Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP)

Robert Klee, Commissioner of the State Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP)

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews State DEEP Commissioner Rob Klee.  In the program, Klee discusses the recent Air Quality Awareness Week, and offers tips on how consumers can change their driving, air conditioning, and appliance-use habits to help curb air pollution.  Klee also describes how the state is dealing with Trump administration environmental officials whose agenda seeks to deregulate air quality programs instead of increasing protections.

Dialogue: 160 Melissa Ziobron

April 29th Dialogue Show

 

 State Rep. Melissa Ziobron (R-East Haddam)

State Rep. Melissa Ziobron (R-East Haddam)

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews State Rep. Melissa Ziobron (R-East Haddam).  In the program, Ziobron, a top ranking Republican on the budget-writing Appropriations Committee, discusses the struggle, now underway, to find a bipartisan solution to this year’s state budget challenges.  Ziobron describes the differences she sees between Republican and Democratic proposals that must be resolved to achieve that goal.

Dialogue: 159 Shawn Lang

April 22nd Dialogue Show

 

 Shawn Lang, deputy director of AIDS Connecticut

Shawn Lang, deputy director of AIDS Connecticut

This week on Dialogue reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Shawn Lang deputy director of AIDS Connecticut.  In the program, Lang describes the status of AIDS treatment today and discusses the struggle to maintain public awareness about the HIV/AIDS challenge in an era when other illnesses command the spotlight.  Lang also talks about the important of getting tested for HIV so patients can get assistance before HIV exposure turns into AIDS.

Dialogue: 158 Brian Flaherty

April 15th Dialogue Show

 Brian Flaherty, vice president for public policy at the Connecticut Business and Industry Association (CBIA).

Brian Flaherty, vice president for public policy at the Connecticut Business and Industry Association (CBIA).

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Brian Flaherty, vice president for public policy at CBIA—the Connecticut Business and Industry Association.  In the program, Flaherty explains why businesses in Connecticut have some problems with proposed legislation to protect workers from sexual harassment and legislation to regulate how employers talk to their employees.  He also offers CBIA’s views on this year’s state budget struggle.

Dialogue: 157 Mae Flexer

April 8th Dialogue Show

 State Sen. Mae Flexer (D-Danielson)

State Sen. Mae Flexer (D-Danielson)

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Democratic State Sen. Mae Flexer, one of the legislature’s most vocal supporters of women’s rights legislation.  In the program, Flexer explains why she was one of several officials calling for the resignation of Connecticut Democratic Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty.  Esty faces claims that she improperly protected a key male staffer against allegations of sexual harassment and assault.  Flexer also discusses a proposed legislative measure dubbed the “Time’s Up” bill to help women who’ve faced sexual harassment.

Dialogue: 156 Ned Lamont

April 1st Dialogue Show

 

 Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Ned Lamont.

Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Ned Lamont.

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Ned Lamont.  In this program, Lamont, who has run before for governor and U.S. Senate, explains why he wants to be elected governor this November, despite Connecticut’s continuing deficit crisis.  Lamont discusses his strategy for attacking the deficit problem, improving the state’s transportation system, and creating more jobs.  He also discusses his views on legalizing pot, installing highway tolls, and improving the education system.

Dialogue: 155 Josh Elliot

March 25th Dialogue Show

 

 State Rep. Josh Elliott (D-Hamden).

State Rep. Josh Elliott (D-Hamden).

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Democratic State Rep. Josh Elliott, an advocate of legalization of marijuana in Connecticut.  In the program, Elliott addresses a variety of topics tied to the marijuana issue including how much tax revenue pot sales could bring in, how marijuana would be regulated in the state, and the likelihood of passage of a marijuana bill this year. He responds to critics who claim legalizing pot would be detrimental to health and safety in Connecticut.

Dialogue: 154 James Smith

March 18th Dialogue Show

 

 James Smith, co-chair of the State Commission on Fiscal Stability & Economic Growth.

James Smith, co-chair of the State Commission on Fiscal Stability & Economic Growth.

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews James Smith, co-chair of the State Commission on Fiscal Stability & Economic Growth.  In the program, Smith explains and defends many controversial recommendations in the Commission’s new report including recommendations for tax hikes, spending cuts, and labor negotiation changes.  He says systemic reforms are needed to get Connecticut out of its continuing deficit crisis.

Dialogue: 153 Eric Hammerling

March 11th Dialogue Show

 

 Eric Hammerling, executive director of the Connecticut Forest & Park Association.

Eric Hammerling, executive director of the Connecticut Forest & Park Association.

This week on Dialogue 2018, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Eric Hammerling of the Connecticut Forest & Park Association.  In the program, Hammerling explains the new “passport to the parks” program that will allow Connecticut residents free access to all state parks.  Hammerling describes the benefits of the program, how it will be financed, and potential political trouble for the program if state lawmakers must grapple with deficits again this year.

Dialogue: 152 Joe Markley

March 4th Dialogue Show

 

 State Sen. Joe Markley (R-Southington).

State Sen. Joe Markley (R-Southington).

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Republican State Sen. Joe Markley, a strong opponent of restoring tolls to Connecticut highways.  In the program, Markley disputes various claims made by those who support tolls.  He also warns that if tolls come back, the public will be upset with the sheer number of toll locations, the cost of tolls on a yearly basis, and possible fines and penalties if toll bills are not paid on time.

Dialogue: 151 Brenda Kupchick

February 25th Dialogue Show

 State Rep. Brenda Kupchick (R-Fairfield).

State Rep. Brenda Kupchick (R-Fairfield).

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews State Rep. Brenda Kupchick, a leading member of a bipartisan coalition to pass new animal welfare laws.  In the program, Kupchick describes the various pieces of legislation, and discusses why preventing animal cruelty and neglect is directly linked to the overall moral obligations of society.

Dialogue: 150 Vincent Candelora

Feburary 18th Dialogue Show

 Deputy House Republican leader Rep. Vincent Candelora (R-North Branford).

Deputy House Republican leader Rep. Vincent Candelora (R-North Branford).

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Deputy House Republican leader Vincent Candelora.  In the show, Candelora explains how Republican lawmakers feel about Gov. Malloy’s recently-released state budget adjustment proposal.  Candelora weighs in on Malloy’s call for highway tolls, certain tax hikes, and municipal funding changes.  He also discusses alternatives GOP lawmakers may propose.

Dialogue: 149 Jillian Gilchrest

February 11th Dialogue Show

 

 Jillian Gilchrest, board member of the Permanent Commission on the Status of Women in Connecticut.

Jillian Gilchrest, board member of the Permanent Commission on the Status of Women in Connecticut.

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Jillian Gilchrest, a board member of the Permanent Commission on the Status of Women in Connecticut—now a non-profit group.  In the show, Gilchrest discusses her group’s 2018 legislative issues agenda.  This list includes issues such as: sexual harassment, pay equity for women, sex trafficking, earned family and medical leave, and women’s health.

Dialogue: 148 Tony Guerrera

February 4th Dialogue Show

 

 State Rep. Tony Guerrera (D-Rocky Hill), co-chair of the legislature’s Transportation Committee.

State Rep. Tony Guerrera (D-Rocky Hill), co-chair of the legislature’s Transportation Committee.

This week on Dialogue 2018 reporter Steve Kotchko interviews State Rep. Tony Guerrera, co-chair of the legislature’s Transportation Committee.  In the program, Guerrera, a leading supporter of restoring highway tolls, talks in detail about the issue.  He comments on Gov. Malloy’s recently-announced proposal to bring back tolls, and Guerrera addresses questions often raised about electronic tolls, such as:  how many, where will they be placed, how much will the toll cost, and will the money really be dedicated to transportation projects as intended.

Dialogue: 147 Joe Aresimowicz

January 28th Dialogue Show

 State House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz (D-Berlin).

State House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz (D-Berlin).

This week on Dialogue reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Democratic State House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz.  In the program, Aresimowicz reviews the 2017 legislative session, with its persistent budget crisis that is almost merging into the 2018 session.  The Speaker discusses the deficit, lawmakers complex relationship with Gov. Malloy, and the possibility the 2018 legislature will vote on restoring highway tolls and the legalization of marijuana in Connecticut.

Dialogue: 146 State Sen. Kevin Witkos

January 21st Dialogue Show

 State Sen. Kevin Witkos (R-Canton), deputy Senate Republican president pro tempore.

State Sen. Kevin Witkos (R-Canton), deputy Senate Republican president pro tempore.

This week on Dialogue reporter Steve Kotchko interviews a Republican State Senate leader, Sen. Kevin Witkos.  In the program, Witkos looks back at the crisis-plagued 2017 legislative session and ahead to the 2018 session that opens in February.  Witkos talks taxes, deficits, education, spending, and transportation.  He is asked to comment on how election year politics will affect bipartisanship in the 2018 session.

Dialogue: 145 Amy Parmenter

January 14th Dialogue Show

 Amy Parmenter, manager of public and government affairs for the AAA Allied Group.

Amy Parmenter, manager of public and government affairs for the AAA Allied Group.

This week on Dialogue, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Amy Parmenter, spokesperson for the AAA.  Schwartz discusses the recent cold wave and snowstorm that pushed AAA’s emergency road crews to the limit.  She explains what you can do to get ready for winter’s next big challenge.  Parmenter discusses a new poll her agency is working on that will seek input from  Connecticut drivers on how the state should finance transportation projects.

Dialogue: 144: Bridgeport Democratic Mayor Joseph Ganim

January 7th Dialogue Show

 Bridgeport Democratic Mayor Joseph Ganim, now a candidate for governor of Connecticut.

Bridgeport Democratic Mayor Joseph Ganim, now a candidate for governor of Connecticut.

This week on the new year’s first edition of Dialogue 2018, reporter Steve Kotchko interviews Bridgeport Mayor Joseph Ganim, who is now a candidate for the Democratic nomination for governor.  Ganim is asked if he believes voters will accept him as a candidate for governor after his conviction and prison sentence on federal corruption charges during his first go-round as Bridgeport’s major.  Ganim also explains how he will finance his campaign.  Due to his conviction, he is not eligible for public financing.  Ganim also addresses taxes, tolls, and the continuing deficit crisis.