WESTPORT, Conn. The Daily Voice sent five questions to each candidate running for state office this fall. The following responses are from Carolanne Curry, a Democrat running to become the state senator of the 26th Senate District, which includes Westport, Bethel, New Canaan, Redding, Ridgefield, Weston and Wilton. She is running against incumbent Toni Boucher, a Republican.
Curry, a 25-year Westport resident, has a mixed professional background that includes finance and accounting. Having come from a politically active family, most of her professional career was spent in public service.
She worked for several years as an administrative assistant in the Senate Democrat Majority Office. Shes also worked as a department director for municipal agencies, including New Haven and Bridgeport as the director of welfare. For the past three years, shes served as an alternate on the Westport Planning and Zoning Commission.
Curry has also been active with a number of civic organizations. She is the founder of First Woman President, Inc., a founding member of the Womens Campaign School at Yale University, a founding board member of Career Resources in Bridgeport and more.
In her personal time, Curry enjoys photography. She lives with her partner of 24 years, Selma Mirian.
1.) What are the biggest issues facing your district?
First, the 26th District faces the threat of losing its excellent public school system if the rules and regulations of the Education Reform Act of 2012, passed by the General Assembly, are imposed.
The Reform Act stifles creative thinking as it emphasizes "teaching to tests" and introduces corporate profits over student needs.
Second, we need to cap the property tax, one of the most regressive taxes in our state.
2.) What would you do differently than the current office-holder?
I'd focus on proposing effective legislation for my district, instead of throwing my name on bill after bill to build up a count, but not getting anything passed.
Also, I'd work on building relationships and not spend 10 hours filibustering medical marijuana, introducing over 30 amendments to kill it and then delay all work in the final hours of the 2012 session.
Finally, Id support efforts to keep all campaign contributions part of the public record.
3.) Is Connecticut going in the right or wrong direction?
I think public financing of campaigns is the right direction. I think same-day voter registration is the right direction. I think the Affordable Health Care act being used by Connecticut citizens today is going in the right direction. I think reducing a $3.5 billion deficit in Gov. Malloy's first year to a 26 million dollar deficit this year is going in the right direction.
4.) What would you do to involve your constituents in your decision-making process?
Id host Curry Conversations in the district on a rotating basis. Ill keep it consistent and keep it real.
5.) Why should people vote for you?
I'm a far better listener than most voters get in their legislator. I'm able to effectively respond to their needs and questions. Plus, I'm able to facilitate and move things forward.