Connecticut Politics Week in Review: Gov. Ned Lamont eyes June 20 for phase two of reopening

State Sen. Heather Somers, R-Groton, and 15 of her colleagues from southeastern Connecticut are asking Lamont for $5 million in state funding to support the Mystic Aquarium, which closed due to the pandemic in March like many other businesses. It was cleared to reopen May 20, but only for outdoor exhibits. “The Aquarium is in need of $2 million in state funding to replace the SBA loan (it only partially received) and will need at least $3 million in additional state funding in order to remain in operation,” the letter from Somers and the other legislators reads. … House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz, D-Berlin, apologized and deleted a Facebook post he made Wednesday where he appeared to wish a small group of protesters who gathered at the Capitol to oppose the state’s slow reopening would fall ill with COVID-19. “All of the people at the ‘Save CT Rally’ today at the Capitol should stand really close together, don’t wear masks, maybe even drink from the same water bottles,” he wrote. “I’ll see you all in 21 days after you get sick.” Hours later he deleted the post and wrote a new one saying, “This morning I posted about the terrible idea of a rally at the Capitol. I tried to make it as ridiculous as the thought of having a rally in my opinion. I did it very poorly and I took it down.” … New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker and Lamont were justified in their decision to shut down a New Haven nightclub as a precautionary measure against the spread of the coronavirus, a federal judge ruled Tuesday. U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea said government has broad authority to impose restrictions during health crises like the current pandemic. “Courts have upheld more extreme measures taken in response to public health needs, including quarantines,” he wrote in his decision. … State Sen. Marilyn Moore, D-Bridgeport, was denied renomination by local Democrats during a virtual convention Tuesday. She was defeated by Marcus Brown, a 29-year-old Bridgeport city councilman who received 81% of the votes cast by delegates from Bridgeport, Monroe and Trumbull, according to the Connecticut Post. Moore, however, received enough support to qualify for an August primary. Last year, Moore nearly defeated Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim in a mayoral primary. … State Treasurer Shawn Wooden is calling on the vice chairman of the Connecticut Lottery Corp.’s governing board to resign after his refusal to put to a vote a $205,000 settlement to a whistleblower case that has dragged on for more than a year. Wooden, an ex officio member of the lottery board, said “if the board does not approve this settlement, taxpayers will pay more.” He then called on the board’s vice chairman, Patrick Birney, who has been running meetings for the past year, to resign.

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