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Republican Selectman seeks to unseat Democratic incumbent in 111th state House District

In the 111th House District, Democratic incumbent Aimee Berger-Girvalo is seeking reelection.  In making the case for another term, she talked about her background working in the public school system, with small businesses and organized advocates.  Republican Selectman Bob Hebert is looking to unseat her.  He says people are tired of politics over people, and want representatives who will listen to others and work together for the good of the people.  He has a background in finance and banking.

 

When it comes to affordable housing, Hebert says he would abolish the 8-30g law if he could, but doesn't think that's realistic.  He'd support revisions to the law which currently allows developers to bypass zoning regulations.  Hebert says a one-size fits all policy doesn't work for Connecticut.  Berger-Girvalo says affordable housing means 30-percent of income, so someone making $80,000 a year still needs $2,000 for housing costs.  She says seniors, police, teachers, firefighters and young grads need to be provided opportunities to live in Fairfield County.  She agrees that 8-30g does need to be reformed. 

 

Berger-Girvalo says they also have to look at transportation and infrastructure.  She also wants lawmakers to look at supporting walkable communities.  She gave the example of the Branchville redevelopment to make it a more liveable, mixed use neighborhood.  Hebert says in order to attract young families and keep seniors here, it comes down to taxes.  He notes that Connecticut is the 2nd most expensive state in the country to live in.  He did agree that more walkable communities would make it an attractive place for people to live.  He wants to reform the corporate tax structure and repeal the prepared meals tax.

 

On abortion access, Hebert says he is concerned about women's overall health.  He says the Supreme Court decision didn't take away abortion in Connecticut, where it's codified in state law.  He doesn't see it as an issue at the state level and doesn't think the General Assembly would vote on it.  His personal belief is that every life is sacred.  He does understand that abortion should be safe, legal and rare.  Berger-Girvalo has spoken openly about her own abortion and supports reproductive access.  She says it's not settled law and if it's banned at the federal level, that will impact Connecticut.

 

When it comes to early voting, Berger-Girvalo says Connecticut is one of only four state that doesn't allow early voting.  She notes that in the House this past session, 23 bills were introduced to limit voting.  Herbert supports early voting, but with limitations.  He believes there's fraud in the elections system elsewhere in the state.

 

Mental wellness was also addressed by the candidates. Berger-Girvalo says there's a health disparity.  She was endorsed by the National Association of Social Workers and says teachers also need support in helping to pull students from the COVID abyss.  Hebert says COVID has exacerbated the issue in every profession.  He says isolation among the youth population became a crisis situation that needs to be addressed.