Candidate Profile: Tony Hwang
Senator Tony Hwang is running for re-election to represent Connecticut’s 28th Senatorial District, which includes the towns of Easton, Fairfield, Newtown, Weston and Westport.
The Fairfield resident and married father of two was born in Taiwan to parents who had escaped Communist China as teens and lived under martial law in Taiwan. Neither parent had attended college, and both worked as blue-collar laborers. “Without education, their prospects in Taiwan for economic success and future opportunities for their family were limited,” said Tony of his parents, “so my dad came, by himself, to the United States to seek better opportunities and The American Dream for us.”
Tony graduated with a bachelor’s degree in labor relations and organizational behavior from Cornell University. After working briefly with United Technologies, he entered the executive search business, ultimately founding his own company recruiting technology executives. For the past several years, Tony has been involved in residential real estate and dedication to public service.
Tony’s commitment to public service began in 2005 when a town educational issue motivated him to run for and win a position on the Fairfield Representative Town Meeting. In 2008, concerned about Connecticut’s fiscal accountability and struggling environment for jobs and businesses, Tony ran for and won the state representative seat representing the 134th district representing Fairfield and Trumbull. He quickly established a track record of what he termed “fiscal responsibility, moderate and responsible social views and an unwavering passion and commitment” to his community.
He won election to State Senate in 2014 and now serves as Deputy Minority Senate Leader. Tony has worked hard with his colleagues on both sides of the aisle, and with his constituents, to create policies and programs that protect Connecticut’s most vulnerable residents and provide opportunity for all communities.
Statement on Three Top Issues Facing Easton
The measures to control Covid-19 health safety have been devastating to the economic viability and sustainability of our households, residents, small businesses, and towns. We now need to strive for a new balance.
We have now begun to operate our state with phase three reopening, the re-opening of our public schools, businesses and easing social interaction protocols has been promising. But infections are starting to climb again, and we must be vigilant against a second wave of Covid-19 illnesses. Unlike politicians in Washington, we need to make policy decisions on medical data and facts and listen to health experts. Ultimately, we need to work together to solve current and looming problems. My three policy suggestions are:
COVID-19 PUBLIC HEALTH
We need to base our public policy decisions on medical facts and data. We need all branches of our government, executive, legislative and judicial, to work together and establish clear protocols and guidelines for reopening Connecticut. Our towns, small businesses, workers, and households need our government to transparently make decisions and develop a sustainable process to reopening while maintaining defense and protection against Covid-19. It is critical for “government” to listen and work with impacted shareholders and maintain the delicate balance between reopening for business while maintaining health practices to prevent Covid-19 infections.
ECONOMIC RECOVERY & STATE BUDGET DEFICIT
Covid-19 beyond its dangerous health risks will significantly impact our state budget as well. Connecticut’s current budget is an estimated $3 billion in deficit out of a nearly $20 billion budget. Our current economic challenges may be the “tip of the iceberg” where our revenue shortfalls will decimate essential governmental services at a time when they are most needed. The Covid-19 pandemic crisis will require collaborative and bipartisan leadership backed by proven experience to overcome this unprecedented challenge.
We need to rebuild the economy by creating jobs through innovation and skilled workforce development. As a leader in higher education and championing bioscience and advanced manufacturing industries, I am focused on creating new jobs for Connecticut. We must also support and sustain our local small businesses which is why I support eliminating the Business Entity Tax and easing onerous regulations and fees.
LOCAL CONTROL & INPUT
I strongly believe that the state government needs to work and collaborate with local governance, where local control and input must always be preserved and protected.
I have a documented record of protecting local control on education land use/zoning and environmental sustainability and protection. Overreaching legislative proposals in Hartford are aimed to take over the decision-making process, leaving local leadership and residents powerless. This shift would institute sweeping changes related to our schools (education regionalization) and local planning and zoning governance (CT Statute 8.30g high density/affordable housing and open space/land use).
I have demonstrated experience and leadership to represent the best interests of Easton for the past six years. I will fight and continue to work tirelessly on behalf of Easton residents. You can trust me to place “people above politics.”