NEW BRITAIN — Local voters on Oct. 7 get what may be their best chance of the campaign to learn what their state legislative candidates want to do about education, jobs, the environment, taxes and more.
The New Britain Area League of Women Voters will sponsor a candidates forum where candidates in nearly a half-dozen races will get to field questions about their positions on a variety of issues facing Connecticut.
The League is hosting its annual candidates forum at 7 p.m. in the community room of police headquarters downtown, and the public is invited to attend. The League said it plans to host candidates who are in the four House races and one Senate race that directly affect New Britain.
Currently, all of the city's legislative delegation is Democratic, and each of the incumbents is running for re-election. Democrats hope to keep the delegation intact, and say it has been very effective in bringing back state aid for the city.
Republicans are countering with a full slate of House candidates in hopes of breaking the pattern that's kept them out of office for several election cycles. They've said for years that it's time for a change. But the most powerful seat on the ballot apparently will go unchallenged; Democratic state Sen. Theresa Gerratana has no opponent.
The League's candidates forums are a tradition in New Britain politics, and are intended to give voters some insights into who is running and what they plan to do if elected. Voters go to the polls on Nov. 4, when the headliner races are for governor and Congress. They'll also be electing a new state House and Senate, which in early January will start what shapes up to be a busy legislative session.
On the ballot in New Britain are Gerratana in the 6th Senate District, Democratic Rep. Rick Lopes and Republican challenger Gennaro Bizarro in the 24th House District, and Democratic Rep. Peter Tercyak and Republican Piotr Ceglarz in the 26th House District. Tercyak will also appear on the ballot as a Working Families Party candidate, and Ceglarz will also appear on the Independent line.
Candidates in the 22nd House District, which covers Plainville and part of New Britain, are Democratic Rep. Betty Boukus, Republican challenger Katherine M. Pugliesi, and petitioning candidate Richard William Broderick II. Pugliesi's name will also appear on the Independent line.
In the 25th House District, Democratic Rep. Robert Sanchez is up against three challengers: Republican Edward Colon, petitioning candidate Alfred Mayo and Green Party candidate Paul Godbell. Sanchez also has the endorsement of the Working Families Party.