Capital briefs

Proposed bill would revise risk reduction credit program

HARTFORD — State Rep. Lezlye Zupkus, R-Prospect, testified on behalf of the House Republican Caucus on March 20 regarding House Bill 5992, which is currently before the Judiciary Committee.

The bill, An Act Concerning Accountability for the Earned Risk Reduction Credit Program, looks to require that inmates fully adhere to their inmate offender accountability plan under the Risk Reeducation Credit Program, a press release stated. The proposal also adds that inmates would lose all of their credits if they test positive on a drug test while incarcerated, the release stated.

The program was started in 2011 to award inmates that meet certain requirements with credits toward a reduction in their sentences, the release stated.

“It has come to our attention that inmates are earning credits without having to actively participate in programs or activities. This is unacceptable,” said Zupkus in the release.

The bill now awaits a vote from the Judiciary Committee, which has until April 7 to take action on the bill.

Legislation targets manufacturing regulations, training

HARTFORD — A bill intended to increase manufacturing training opportunities and cut regulations on manufacturers passed the state’s Commerce Committee last week.

Senate Bill 963, An Act Concerning Educational and Environmental Issues Related to Manufacturing, makes several changes related to teacher certifications and training, allowing more qualified teachers to be certified as a technical high school occupational subjects teacher, a press release issued by state Sen. Joan Hartley, D-Waterbury, stated.

The bill reduces the number of years of industry experience needed for certification and requires the Board of Regents to expand the night, weekend and online course offerings for students studying to become manufacturing teachers, according to the release.

The bill also establishes a working group that will be tasked with developing a program to train prison inmates for manufacturing jobs, the release stated.

“By increasing our pipeline of vo-tech teachers we will also increase the number of students they train, thereby expanding the pool of qualified applicants for manufacturing positions. We are also working to get rid of unnecessary regulations that place an undue burden on manufacturers and make it harder for them to grow and thrive in our state,” said Hartley, who is co-chair of the legislature’s Manufacturing Caucus, in the release.

The bill went to Senate for further consideration.