Absentee Balloting, Police Reforms At Top Of Lamont's Wish List

Rich Kirby
·2 min read

CONNECTICUT — Gov. Ned Lamont met with the state legislative leadership on Tuesday to hash out what they wanted to get accomplished during a special session he says he will call for the last two weeks of July.

At a news conference later in the day, the governor said the session is an effort to "get back to a normal course of business in the state capitol."

Lamont intends the session to be focused exclusively on the passage of four bills.

On the top of the list is an extension of absentee balloting through the November election season.

"We don't want to see a long line of people waiting to vote in November, the way you've seen in Georgia, Wisconsin and some other places" during those state's primaries. Lamont was granted emergency powers at the start of the coronavirus outbreak which he used to trigger absentee ballots for the August primaries, but those powers expire Sept. 9.

Second on Lamont's wish list is a "police accountability" bill. Judiciary committees on both sides of the aisle have been collaborating on the legislation, Lamont said. If passed into law, the use of chokeholds and deadly force would be greatly curtailed, and police would lose "qualified immunity" from civil lawsuits in cases alleging violation of civil rights, among other reforms.

On March 19, Lamont issued an Executive Order that waived a number of restrictions placed on telehealth providers as relates to what services and types of vendors Medicaid and private insurance carriers would recognize.

"And that's been very successful in the midst of COVID where you didn't want a lot of people going back and forth." Lamont wants legislators to allow for the extension of that order until the next regular session in January 2021.

The fourth bill Lamont hopes to sail through the special session is one that would cap the price on insulin. He says he believes that piece of legislation has "broad agreement."

Lamont also said the State Bond Commission will meet Tuesday. On the table is a $325 million bonding agenda, most of which is earmarked for school upgrades.

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This article originally appeared on the Across Connecticut Patch