HARTFORD – State Rep. Lucy Dathan (D-142; representing Norwalk, New Canaan), a champion for pro-environment policies, scored high marks on the 2023 Environmental Scorecard published annually by the CT League of Conservation Voters.
The 2023 Environmental Scorecard is intended to hold lawmakers accountable for their votes on environmental policy. The final score for each legislator represents an average of their votes on specific bills.
Rep. Dathan has been an advocate for pro-environment legislation whenever she has the opportunity to do so. As the House Chair of the Regulations Review Committee that vets regulations to ensure they comply with state law, she has recently been in the spotlight during the fight to maintain the state’s electric vehicle and clean air standards.
As a leader of that committee, Rep. Dathan supported regulations prescribed in the 2004 bipartisan legislation calling for stronger emissions standards for cars, and to align regulations with a law passed last year to phase in stronger standards for trucks and buses.
Those standards call for auto dealers to offer an increasing percentage of new clean-emission vehicles for sale by 2035 and incentivize the transition away from polluting fossil fuels.
The emissions standards are aimed at improving air quality across the state. Connecticut’s air quality is among the worst in the nation, leading to increased cases of asthma in children and exasperating health issues for the elderly. Opponents of the regulations, supported by the fossil-fuel industry, succeeded in forcing Gov. Lamont to withdraw the regulations and send them back for legislative debate.
Rep. Dathan’s voting record in favor of pro-environment bills earned a score of 91% and high praise from CTLCV Executive Director Lori Brown.
“Rep. Dathan is a respected and important voice in the General Assembly and her support of policies advancing clean air and water is vital to creating healthier communities across Connecticut,” Brown said. “Those of us who fight for a cleaner environment every day know we can count on Rep. Dathan to advocate for strong pro-environment legislation.”
Among key votes in support of the environment during the 2023 legislative session, Rep. Dathan voted to establish a state decarbonization plan through HB 6397 to guide state agencies toward goals prescribed by the Global Warming Solutions Act. The plan would provide a broad set of policies intended to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across multiple agencies. This economy-wide approach would include long and short-term goals and benchmarks.
She voted in favor of a statewide Carbon Budget calling for the state Department of Transportation and Department of Energy and Environmental Protection to jointly establish a maximum level of greenhouse gasses emitted by the transportation sector.
Rep. Dathan voted to provide grants to towns for PFAS testing and remediation to help improve drinking water quality
As a member of the Appropriations Committee, Rep. Dathan also supported SB 4, a comprehensive housing bill to invest in efficiency and clean energy in communities that need it most. While the bill never made it to a full Senate vote, an element of the bill was included in the state budget to create a $125 million low-interest Housing Environmental Improvement Revolving Loan Fund to provide funding for energy efficiency upgrades to multi-family housing units in Environmental Justice communities.
This year’s Environmental Scorecard covers 31 bills affecting the environment and three bills advancing voting rights. This was the first year CTLCV included a separate
“Democracy” score for all lawmakers based on voting rights legislation. Rep. Dathan earned a Democracy Score of 100%.
These and other important initiatives were deliberated and voted on at the CT General Assembly in 2023. More information about CTLCV’s work on behalf of the environment can be found at CTLCV.org.
The public is also invited to attend CTLCV Education Fund’s annual Environmental Summit set for January 23 where advocates, lawmakers, and policy experts will preview upcoming legislative priorities for the 2024 legislative session. The day-long session will be held in person at the CT Science Center with an online option, and limited free access for students.
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