As the saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
State Sen. Gary LeBeau (D-East Hartford) may not consider the Connecticut General Assembly broken, but he think it could be more efficient. So he's submitted Senate Joint Bill 71 that would create a unicameral legislature. (Think back to civics class - it's a one-chamber body, instead of a House and Senate.)
LeBeau will testify on Monday to promote the that would cut the 187-member assembly by two-thirds, to a new 60-member assembly.
“A unicameral legislature would be more efficient, more effective, and more accountable to the people of Connecticut,” said LeBeau, who is now serving his 19th year in the General Assembly. “We could save money by consolidating legislative staff, salaries, and supplies.”
The proposed bill would also add two years to the term of each elected member of the assembly.
“Elected officials serving four-year terms could spend more time working on bills instead of worrying about re-election,” LeBeau said. “And we’d be more accountable to both our votes and our constituents.”
The Connecticut Constitution would need some work if the bill were passed.
The resolution’s public hearing in front of the Government Administration and Elections Committee on Monday will be open to the public. It begins at 9:30 a.m. and will be located in Room 2-B of the Legislative Office Building in Hartford.
Yeah, we'll see how this goes over with LeBeau's colleagues. While it may not pass this session, it at least raises some interesting questions for lawmakers.