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Madeleine Marie Leveille

Running for State Representative

2 CTNewsJunkie Reader Endorsements

Party: Green Party

CEP Status:


Age: 68

Marital Status: Married

Current Residence: CLINTON

Current Job: Forensic Psychologist, Private Practice

Previous Job: Psychologist, CHCP (Community Health Care Plan)

Previous Job: School Psychologist, Amity High School

Education: Ph.D.

How should the state address disparities in the Education Cost Sharing formula? What specific modifications would you suggest, if any?
Please see answer above. Also, it is highly inefficient to have as many school districts as we do. We should consider regionalization of schools.
Should the government's response to the opioid crisis be to focus on law enforcement to stop drug dealers, or improving access to treatment for addiction and reducing the overprescription of painkillers?
As a forensic psychologist, I have seen the tragic effects of responding to the opioid crisis through law enforcement on individuals and their families. Research demonstrates that improving access to treatment is works and is cost-effective. The medical community is responding to this crisis, and they are beginning to follow the recently promulgated CDC Guidelines for Prescribing Opiates for Chronic Pain. The CT Department of Health, in conjunction with the various state associations of medical providers, should provide continuing education for medical professionals regarding these guidelines and related issues.
In 2016 the Connecticut Retirement Security Program was created. It will give over 600,000 residents in our state a way to save for retirement at work. Knowing that employees are 15 times more likely to save merely by having access to payroll deduction, how will you continue the implementation of this important program?
This program should be continued, and improvements should be made to it, based on evaluation of its processes.
Would you vote for a bill that would legalize recreational marijuana? Why or why not?
I strongly oppose cannabis use by minors, and I want evidence-based education for students in our public schools regarding alcohol, marijuana and other substance. That being said, I would support a bill to legalize recreational marijuana. In my practice as a forensic psychologist, I have seen many individuals who have criminal records due, in large measure, to their use of marijuana. A criminal record, even for a misdemeanor, makes it difficult to obtain employment. Incarcerating someone for possession of marijuana costs more than $50,000 per year. That money could be spent on more productive endeavors. If marijuana was legalized, the coffers of the State of Connecticut would be increased as as result of the sales tax on marijuana.
How should the state balance the needs of vulnerable populations with the reality of another large budget deficit?
The State cannot sacrifice one of these issues for the other. The State must reverse its course from promoting regressive tax policies (decreased taxes for the wealthy, taxing non-wage funds (e.g. interest, dividends, capital gains) at a significantly lower rate than money earned through work, gift taxes, decreased estate taxes) to moving toward fair and progressive taxation. The State must spend the funds its receives wisely, which means it must be more efficient, and it must eliminate crony capitalism and sweetheart deals for large donors to political campaigns. In addition, the State must support small businesses, because they are the job creators (more so than the hedge funds and international companies that recently received the Governor's largesse). The State must become even more creative in bringing industry and tourism to the state.
A recent report found 40 percent of Connecticut residents can't afford basic needs such as housing, food, health care, or child care. What would you do to improve their situation?
Stop regressive taxation. Working class and middle class residents pay a greater percentage of their income of sales taxes, property taxes and rent than do the very wealthy. They, not the wealthy, need tax relief. In addition, people need to be paid living wages. Working class and middle class residents have contributed to the increased productivity of the State, but their wages, adjusted for inflation and cost of living, have stagnated. This must be rectified.
Will you support top-down efforts to regionalize local services with an eye toward more efficiency and reducing the state's obligations regarding ECS and/or other funding for towns? How would you go about it?
Absolutely. Many towns throughout the State including those in my district have begun to work cooperatively with other town regarding services and planning. To encourage more regionalization. 6.) Connecticut has 169 towns and more than 200 school districts. Consequently, the state suffers from a severe diseconomy of scale (built-in inefficiencies due to the size of the operating units). To reduce inefficiencies, the Connecticut General Assembly (representatives and senators) should pass enabling legislation that would allow municipalities to combine functions (e.g. Registrars of Voters, water services, fire and police services). In addition, the legislature should encourage the formation of larger, more cost-effective school districts. These larger districts would give students more educational opportunities than their present smaller districts, and it would reduce costs. The Connecticut Regional Councils of Government should be employed to bring about better coordination and efficiency of services.
Where and how should state government focus its efforts in order to grow jobs?
The State of Connecticut needs to support Main Street, not Wall Street. Rather than giving loans and grants to multinational companies and other big businesses, the State should provide this assistance to local businesses. Research shows that local businesses add more to a town’s economy than big business doesA Connecticut state-sponsored public bank (similar to the very successful state-sponsored Bank of North Dakota) should be established as a way of reducing interest rates on mortgages and consumer loans to small businesses and the public.
Would you support legislation to "ban the box," prohibiting employers from asking the question about criminal convictions on a job application?
Based on estimates that out-of-state drivers would contribute 30-40% of overall revenue if highway tolls are implemented in Connecticut, would you support tolls with or without offsetting cuts in the state's gas taxes?
I am not in favor of tolls, because they are regressive form of taxation. For many working families and middle class families, tolls could amount to one week's wage per year. If a toll were instituted, there would have to a plan in place to effectively provide lower costs of the tolls for Connecticut residents, particularly those who are already struggling to pay for food, housing, etc. The CT
Eversource and some out-of-state entities appear to be attempting to buy control of Connecticut's water resources, and some of our quasi-public water agencies have signed away large amounts of water to commercial interests with little regard to future water shortages. What can you do to ensure that Connecticut residents maintain control of public water supplies in perpetuity?
The CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection need to be given the wherewithal to act to preserve Connecticut's water resources.
Much of Connecticut is economically and racially segregated because many towns lack affordable housing and local zoning regulations prohibit multi-family dwellings. How would you propose incentivizing municipalities to start allowing multi-family units and other affordable housing options?
One way is to reconceptualize the funding of special education education, the organization of public school systems, and the state financial assistance to towns. School systems pay most of the cost of special education for its students. This creates situations, especially for the smaller towns, when a town's resources are stretched beyond the breaking point when a family who have several children who require high levels of special education services moves into town. The State needs to assume the cost of special education instead of the towns. This will equalize the playing field in schools and it might make towns more willing to allowing multi-family units and other affordable housing.
The 459,000 family caregivers in Connecticut provide an estimated 427 million hours of care each year. Nationwide, nearly seven in ten caregivers report making work accommodations because of caregiving, including arriving late/leaving early, cutting back their hours, changing jobs, or stopping work entirely. Would you support a family leave law that provides paid leave to employees who have to take time off for family caregiving purposes?
I would support such a law. I would look at similar laws in other states and find out how these laws have been implemented. I am concerned about not placing an undue burden on small companies, and I would research how laws in other states handle this issue.