CONNECTICUT — The 2020 election is heating up in Connecticut and there are plenty of races with candidates eager to serve in elected office. Eyes are primarily focused on the presidential election, but every state representative and senate seat is up for grabs. All five of Connecticut's congressional seats are up for grabs as well.
There are 151 seats in the state House of Representatives and 36 in the state Senate. Democrats currently hold majorities in both chambers with a 91 to 60 lead over Republicans in the House and a 22 to 14 lead in the Senate.
Connecticut Patch asked candidates to answer questions about their campaigns and will be publishing candidate profiles as Election Day draws near.
Ed Scinto, a Stratford resident, is running for House of Representatives District 121.
Party affiliation: Republican Party
Family: Married to Katherine for 39 years, son Lenny, daughter Kelly
Occupation: Custodian, Stratford BOE, for eight years, and Home Depot sales associate for 15 years
Previous elected experience: Current elected constable for 10 years. Appointed positions include Waterfront Harbor Management (15 years), chairman of the commission for five years. Inland Wetlands & Watercourse Commission for 15 years, previously served as vice chair for five years. Planning Commission for four years, Zoning Commission for four years. Served as the Long Beach West Blue Ribbon Commission.
Family members in government: No member of my family works in politics or government.
Campaign website: Ed Scinto for State Representative
The single most pressing issue facing our state is _______, and this is what I intend to do about it.
The single most pressing issue facing our state is the economic recovery that needs to take place. I have advocated for many years to make Stratford a more affordable and attractive place for residents and businesses. I will never vote for a tax increase and will work actively toward lowering state taxes. We need to get everyone back to work. I want to eliminate burdensome regulations and create better tax incentives to attract new businesses and create a sustainable workforce. My opponent, Joe Gresko, voted for a $50 million annual tax increase on small businesses and increased unnecessary filing fees. Together, these taxes and regulations inhibit job growth and make Connecticut unattractive to new businesses and our workforce.
What are the critical differences between you and the other candidates seeking this post?
The critical differences between me and my opponent is I am for Stratford's agenda, not a regional agenda. I will work for our town unlike my opponent, Joe Gesko, who works for Joe Ganim and the City of Bridgeport. The other critical difference is I support our law enforcement, Joe Gresko's recent vote on HB 6004-2020 exposed our officers and their families to frivolous lawsuits and will cost taxpayers of Stratford in upwards of $3 million in increased taxes! Our law enforcement may hesitate to do their jobs, which could cost them their lives or the lives of others. I want to defend the police not defund the police.
What accomplishments in your past would you cite as evidence you can handle this job?
My many years of volunteering in the community has afforded me the opportunity to listen to the people of our town. I understand their issues because they are also my issues. People are disgusted with government intrusion and the constant tax increases and unfunded mandates coming out of Hartford. They want real leadership, someone to not only represent them but to advocate for our best interests. My opponent is beholden to the City of Bridgeport and their mayor, Joe Ganim. His voting record proves it.
Do you believe Connecticut needs reform when it comes to electric utility oversight? What steps, if any should be taken?
PURA (Public Utility Regulation Authority) needs to step up and do what they are appointed to do, look out for the rate payers. Unfortunately the lobbying for the utility companies is strong.
What steps should state government take to bolster economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic for local businesses?
The state needs to allow small businesses easier access to CARES Act money. Making it hard with too much bureaucratic red tape has discouraged businesses and has directly impacted their ability to survive through this crisis. Originally this shutdown was to prevent the hospitals from being overwhelmed. There is no reason the State Assembly (Joe Gresko) couldn't allow small businesses to open fully so long as they comply with social distance standards. We are witnessing too many families being impacted economically and physically due to Joe Gresko's lack of leadership.
List other issues that define your campaign platform:
One of my main focus will be the Waterfront. The Waterfront is our heritage, but more importantly, it is our future. I will continue to fight to keep the Waterfront well-maintained as it remains the mainstay of our economy. I also understand that local control of education is the best way to provide quality education to our children. I will fight against Hartford-controlled education decisions.
What else would you like voters to know about yourself and your positions?
As a lifelong Stratford resident, I have deep roots in our community. I graduated from Stratford High School in 1976 and stayed here to raise my family. I have served our town as the night custodial supervisor at Stratford High, a member of the Planning and Zoning Commissions, town constable, and justice of the peace. My passion is serving our community, and I will continue to serve us as our state representative. I will always put our district and town first.