Op-ed: Raising the minimum wage: A good start, but not enough

Op-Ed by CCAG Director Tom Swan CT Mirror - March 31, 2014

It's great news and excellent economic policy that Gov. Malloy and the legislature have raised Connecticut’s minimum wage to $10.10 by 2017. This will put money into the pockets of Connecticut families who will in turn spend it, thus stimulating our economy.

Consumer protections promised, not yet delivered in CT

CT Mirror - March 31, 2014

Consumers' groups delivered a reminder to legislators Monday about their high expectations for still-developing legislation that leaders promise will protect the public against bait-and-switch marketing by third-party electric suppliers.

PURA Will Hit the Road to Hear the Public's Concerns About the Electric Marketplace

The Public Utility Regulatory Authority announced on Friday that has “opened a docket” to look into complaints from consumers, and has scheduled five public hearings around Connecticut to learn about consumers’ experiences with electricity suppliers in the new marketplace. The hearing schedule is below:

  • Feb. 19, 6:30 p.m. in the City Hall Auditorium, 70 West River St., Milford
  • Feb. 20, 6:30 p.m. at the Farmington Community Senior Center, 321 New Britain Ave., Unionville
  • Feb. 24, 6:30 p.m. in Room 135, Brookfield Town Hall, 100 Pocono Road, Brookfield
  • Feb. 25, 6:30 p.m. in the Norwich City Hall, 100 Broadway, Norwich
  • Feb. 27, 6:30 p.m. in the City Hall Building, Veterans Memorial Hall – 2nd Floor, 235 Grand St., Waterbury
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ctnewsjunkie.com: Connecticut’s Electric Marketplace Fraught with Unscrupulous Marketing Practices

ctnewsjunkie.com - February 16, 2014

Retail electricity suppliers aggressively market low fixed rates to Connecticut residents, but many consumers are finding those initial savings give way to expensive variable rates that have more than doubled their bills.

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Got coverage? CCAG has an onsite Certified Access Health Assister available to guide consumers through the Access Health CT enrollment process

To enroll in healthcare through Access Health CT, please contact: Danny Ravizza, Certified Application Counselor w/ Access Health CT at (203) 572-1268 or by email at danny.ravizza@gmail.com.

Connecticut has already enrolled 62,153 previously uninsured people with health care plans as of December 2013. If you, your family, or your friends are currently without health care coverage or would like to browse, compare, or purchase health plans, CCAG has an on-site certified in-person assister that can guide you through the process.

LIBOR Scandal Is The Biggest Financial Corruption Case in History

What is the LIBOR scandal and how does it impact public budgets?

CT'S LARGEST EMPLOYERS SHIFTING MORE HEALTH CARE COSTS TO TAXPAYERS

Some of CT's largest and most profitable employers, such as Walmart and Dunkin Donuts, are dumping their health care costs on to taxpayers. And it's costing the state an estimated $250 million every year. How? Many major corporations are slashing thousands of workers' hours to avoid compliance with the Affordable Care Act. Employees at companies listed in Forbes' Fortune 500's top ranks are being refused full-time work, even when they ask week after week. Walmart stores have overwhemlingly stopped hiring any fulltime work at all. More than half are only hiring temp work.

Absentee ballot abuse alleged in Bridgeport vote

The Norwich Bulletin - September 3, 2013   Bridgeport, Conn. —

A watchdog group alleges that absentee ballots have been abused in Bridgeport's Board of Education election set for Sept. 10.

The Connecticut Citizen Action Group, city residents and elected officials say they will file a complaint Tuesday at City Hall.

The Connecticut Post reports (http://bit.ly/15oBKYp) that Citizen Action Group executive director Tom Swan is demanding an investigation.

Absentee Ballot Abuse to be Alleged in Bridgeport BOE Election

ABSENTEE BALLOT ABUSE TO BE ALLEGED IN BRIDGEPORT BOE ELECTION

Tom Swan, Executive Director of the Connecticut Citizen Action Group (CCAG), will be joining Bridgeport residents and elected representatives on Tuesday, September 2, 2013, at 1 PM, at the Bridgeport Town Clerk's office, Bridgeport City Hall, 45 Lyon Terrace, Bridgeport, Connecticut, to deliver copies of Affidavits of Complaint concerning alleged absentee ballot abuse in the Bridgeport Board of Education election, to be held on September 10, 2013.

Top Execs At “Big Five’’ Health Insurers Each Pull In Millions

Connecticut Health Investigative Team - June 10, 2013

Health care reform, new Wall Street regulations and outrage over large pay packages are likely to put pressure on compensation for health insurance executives.

But it doesn’t seem to have happened yet.

The highest-paid executive at each of the “Big Five’’ health insurers – UnitedHealth Group, Aetna Inc., WellPoint Inc., Humana Inc. and Cigna Corp. – made more than $8 million in 2012, according to filings this spring with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The CEO of EmblemHealth Inc., a nonprofit that owns ConnectiCare, also had total compensation at that level in 2011, the last year for which information is available.

Pay for top management teams – the five highest-paid executives at each company – ranged from $21 million at Humana to $47 million at United Health. Compensation includes salary, bonus, stock gifts and options granted that year, non-equity pay and benefits.

WellPoint, which owns Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Connecticut, insures more state residents – 1.2 million – than any other company, according to the Connecticut Department of Insurance. Compensation for its top five executives totaled $41 million.

“The public wants money to go to health care services,” said Ken Ferrucci, senior vice president of government affairs at the Connecticut State Medical Society. “It’s very frustrating. When I have conversations with physicians, they think about services they could provide with that money.”

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