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Sound Bites: Polls shows majority of Connecticut residents approve of Lamont

Conn. Gov. Ned Lamont
Jessica Hill

Good morning! Wesleyan University’s Survey Lab released survey results from a Connecticut public opinion poll on Monday. 600 registered state voters were surveyed online through data collection service YouGov from April 3-17, 2023. 

The poll found that 60% of respondents approve of Ned Lamont’s performance as governor while 33% disapprove. Overall, 84% of Democrats, 51% of independents and 23% of Republicans approve of his time as governor so far. 61% of voters also found that Lamont handled the COVID-19 pandemic “much better” or “somewhat better” than governors in other states. 14% thought that Lamont handled the pandemic worse than other governors.  

Additionally, 86% of those polled supported lowering tax rates on individuals earning less than $50,000 and on families earning less than $100,000 annually. 58% of voters thought that affordability of housing was a “big problem,” 87% of voters also supported requiring higher bail and immediate revocation of parole for individuals convicted of repeated firearm offenses.

Here’s a bite-sized look at what else we are hearing:

New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed new legislation to expand resident access to reproductive healthcare on Tuesday. The legislation will make hormonal contraception available over-the-counter and allow all students in SUNY or CUNY universities to have access to abortion medication on campus. Around 19 states have banned or restricted access to abortion medication with New York being one of the few Safe Harbor States in the country.

West Haven City Council Chairman Peter Massaro says he will not attend any meetings between the state Municipal Accountability Review Board and the council until the board issues an apology. Massaro claimed the board has done nothing but ridicule the council since West Haven came under the boards’ jurisdiction in 2017. The board typically provides technical and financial assistance for municipalities experiencing distress.

Long Island had its first legal sale of recreational cannabis on Tuesday. Legacy Dispensers, one of the first licensed cannabis retailers, delivered the first legal recreational cannabis to island resident Bryan Brown as a test run for delivery performance and to show off Long Island exclusive products. Regional deliveries will officially begin on Monday, May 8.

Milford-based Subway closed 571 locations in 2022. According to a report from Reuters, this closure marks a 2.7% decrease in the chain’s total number of locations in the United States, down to 20,576 shops. Hundreds of Subway locations have closed since 2016 when the chain operated nearly 27,000 restaurants. Subway is considering a $10 billion sale.

Suffolk County will have to pay $750,000 in damages for the violent arrest and prosecution of Deer Park resident Michael McDevitt. According to Newsday, McDevitt was arrested in 2014 for allegedly assaulting a police officer following a dispute with a landlord. But a lawsuit alleges that in fact the police officer held McDevitt at gunpoint and beat him physically.

Former Connecticut State SWAT Sergeant Joseph Mercer won a $260,500 settlementagainst the Connecticut State Police Union and the Department of Emergency Services. In 2016, Mercer charged the CSPU and DES with illegally demoting him from Operations Sergeant after he abstained from CSPU membership and would not pay dues to support the union’s political activities.

Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency Executive Director Anthony J. Catapano will retire at the age of 63. Catapano worked with the IDA for nearly 40 years, serving as executive director since 2014. According to Newsday, Catapano’s deputy Kelly Murphy will serve as acting executive director until an IDA committee finds a permanent successor.

Two former Fairfield town officials are on trial for illegally dumping contaminated soil onto town property. Scott Bartlett and Brian Carey reportedly dumped over 40 truck loads of contaminated soil from Owen Fish Pond to a Department of Public Works site to be used in creating a berm. Testimony of the officials took place on Monday and deliberations began on Wednesday.

Northwell Health is suing a former Long Island Jewish Medical Center morgue attendant for posting inappropriate photos and videos of cadavers on social media. Quantaise Sharpton posted several videos of her dancing or mocking corpses in the morgue. Northwell terminated Sharpton in March after repeated attempts to have her take down the posts.

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Eric Warner is a news fellow at WSHU.