FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. -- For the first time since its inception in 1998, the Connecticut League of Conservation Voters has chosen to make an endorsement in the state's gubernatorial race.
After interviewing both candidates, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy earned the the group's endorsement as a strong leader in protecting Connecticut's environment. Malloy, a Democrat, is facing a challenge from Republican Tom Foley.
"It is not often that you have such a solid record for a candidate in making these decisions. Gov. Malloy's record has been exemplary," said Lori Brown, CTLCV executive director.
In his first term, Malloy's record includes major investments in the Clean Water Fund, helping to ensure water quality by upgrading sewage treatment plants that impact rivers and Long Island Sound, CTLCV said. Malloy has also been a leader in supporting the passage of a long overdue statewide water plan, as well as committing to support a Long Island Sound "Blue Plan" to manage that critical resource, the group said.
Malloy's administration has put its mark on protecting open space as well, most notably by the protection of the rare coastal forest known as The Preserve and another major property known as Seaside, CTLCV said. Both would have been lost to the public forever if the state had not stepped in.
The governor has continued to fund open space acquisitions across the state.
Another major environmental effort in Malloy's first term was to consolidate several governmental entities into the new Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.
"This was a creative solution to some of our environmental problems in Connecticut and which moved the bar forward dramatically. By connecting energy and the environment, he made an important statement about relationship between these two critical issues," said Brown.
The league is enthusiastic about Malloy's environmental agenda, which addresses some of the big environmental issues in Connecticut:
- A new Long Island Sound Stewardship Fund, green infrastructure planning and reducing polluted runoff;
- Increase funding for open space by 50 percent ($5 million to $7.5 million) and a local trailway fund in urban/suburban areas
- Residential solar incentives, support for microgrids, and capitalizing the Green Bank
"Our bipartisan board was unanimous in voting for the governor's endorsement," said David Bingham, co-chair of the CTLCV.
"Having a governor in office with clear environmental goals and the same core environmental values of the citizens of this state is exactly what we are looking for in our elected officials. If you care about clean water, land, air, wildlife, transportation and energy issues, you should support the pro-environment candidate on Nov. 4," said Bingham. "Malloy worked to protect Connecticut's most valuable asset, the environment, and he will see to it going forward with vision and foresight."
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