Tony Hwang

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Tony Hwang
Tony Hwang - State Senate 28th - Sitting.jpg
Member of the Connecticut Senate
from the 28th District
Assumed office
2015
Preceded by John P. McKinney
Member of the Connecticut House of Representatives
from the 134th district
In office
2009–2015
Preceded by Tom F. Christiano
Succeeded by Laura Devlin
Personal details
Born (1964-09-17) September 17, 1964 (age 53)
Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Grace
Residence Fairfield, Connecticut
Alma mater Cornell University (BS)
Website www.tonyhwang.org

Tony Hwang (simplified Chinese: 黄涛; traditional Chinese: 黃濤; pinyin: Huáng Tāo; born September 17, 1964) is a residential real estate agent for William Raveis and serves as the state senator for the 28th District (parts of Fairfield, Westport, Weston, Easton, and Newtown Sandy Hook CT). Previously, Hwang served as a state representative for the 134th District in the Connecticut General Assembly.[1][2] Hwang became a state representative in 2008 and won re-election in 2010 and 2012. He is the assistant Senator Republican Majority Leader.

In April 2014, Hwang ran for the 28th State Senate District. His Democratic opponent was 133rd District State Rep. Kim Fawcett.[3] Hwang was endorsed by State Senator John McKinney.[4] McKinney vacated the Senate seat in order to run for governor, but subsequently lost in the Republican primary to Tom Foley.[5] On November 6, 2014, Hwang won the State Senate seat for the 28th District after receiving 55 percent of the votes.[6] In 2016, Hwang received re-election endorsements from Robert H. Steele, John Kasich, Pat Llodra[7] the Connecticut League of Conservation Voters, and The National Federation of Independent Business among others.[8][9][10]

Biography[edit]

Hwang was born in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, after his parents fled the communist government in mainland China as teenagers and re-settled in Taiwan.[11] The family emigrated to Watertown, New York, when Hwang was approximately nine years old. His family's first residence in the United States was in a federally subsidized housing project until his family moved to Syracuse, NY approximately three years later. Hwang began his education in the US, not able to speak or read the English language. Hwang started in remedial English as a second language (ESL) curriculum during his initial years in America. It was through the inspirations and motivation of his parents and the caring and counsel of great teachers that he succeeded academically by graduating from Corcoran High School in the Syracuse Public School system and later from Cornell University with a B.S. Degree in Labor Relations and Organizational Behavior.

Hwang's first job was working in his family's restaurant in Syracuse, New York throughout his teenage years. After graduating college, he joined United Technologies' corporate training program in Hartford, Connecticut. Exercising his entrepreneurial spirit, he started and built a retained executive search business in the area of physician recruitment and emerging technologies before becoming a commercial and residential realtor.

Throughout the nearly two decades in Connecticut, Hwang has lived in Fairfield and has been a dedicated community public advocate. He has volunteered and served in numerous community and non-profit organizations and boards such as: Center for Family Justice (domestic violence), Operation Hope (homeless shelter), The Kennedy Center of Connecticut (intellectual disability), veterans groups and interfaith charities.

Hwang and his wife Grace are the parents of a daughter and son.

2016 CT State Senate Campaign and Election[edit]

Hwang ran for re-election in 2016 to retain his seat as state senator for the 28th district. After weathering the storm from democrat opponent's Philip Dwyer's overwhelmingly negative campaign of personal attacks, accusations, social media weaponization and misinformation, Hwang handily won 58% of the vote,[12] with 22,152 total votes. In his acceptance speech, Hwang remarked, "Win or lose, there is no shame because we've done it the right way with integrity and focusing on issues that impact Connecticut," and that he believed he won because his constituents know that he has demonstrated a commitment to community, "It's not a slogan."[13]

During 2016, Hwang was a steadfast supporter of Presidential candidate John Kasich of Ohio and believed that "Governor Kasich is the only Presidential candidate with wide appeal to Connecticut republicans." In March of that year, Hwang was named Chairman of Kasich for America's CT Presidential campaign. Kasich said of Hwang, "Senator Hwang is a fiscal conservative with a proven record of bringing results to his community. He fits right in and I thank him for his hard work and commitment to our cause."[14]

Accepting Governor Kasich's offer, Hwang said, "We need to elect leaders who have made a positive difference in governing, not just rhetoric and anger to raise false hopes. Let's make our state matter in selecting the best choice for President." Hwang hosted Presidential Town Hall meetings for Governor Kasich at Sacred Heart University on April 8, 2016[15] and Glastonbury High School on April 22.[16] Governor Kasich endorsed Hwang for re-election to State Senate.[17]

2014 Investigation of Public Campaign Funds Use and Disclosure[edit]

Despite Rep. Tony Hwang's being the Republican ranking member of the Government Administration and Elections Committee, the Connecticut State Elections Enforcement Commission voted and authorized an investigation of State Rep. Tony Hwang on September 16, 2014.[18]

The investigation was authorized by the Connecticut Commission upon reviewing complaints and submitted materials from Town of Fairfield's Democratic Town Committee. The complaint alleges State Rep. Tony Hwang did not disclose the purchase of supplemental campaign materials, essentially augmenting the closely monitored public funding of a campaign, with a particular focus on State Rep. Tony Hwang logo-ridden apparel and large signs serving as advertising on Fairfield golf courses.[19]

State Rep. Tony Hwang explained that the apparel were his own clothes and a large public-facing sign was from a previous election.[20] According to the "2014 Guide for Statewide Office and General Assembly Candidates", a State Senator candidate may use up to $2,000 of personal funds and the use of these funds must be clearly disclose in detail. Similarly, Prior Assets from previous campaigns must be similarly disclosed and accounted at the previous campaign's value. In both cases, the personal funds or prior assets reduce the amount of public financing handed over to the candidate.[21]

State Rep. Tony Hwang called the claims petty, accused the Fairfield Democratic Town Committee as trying to distract the electorate and expected to be exonerated.[22] No public discussion about conflict of interest between the Committee's investigation and State Rep. Tony Hwang's legislative role has emerged to date.

Fighting domestic violence[edit]

In 2012, State Rep. Tony Hwang was recognized in a new class of "First 100 Plus" Men for their leadership in fighting domestic violence by the Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence.[23] The statewide event, held at the Crowne Plaza in Cromwell, gave the organization an opportunity to reflect on the positive legislative changes that have taken place in preventing domestic violence and honored those who have made significant contributions to that effort, while also recognizing the tremendous work ahead in ending domestic abuse.[24]

Awards[edit]

State Rep. Tony Hwang received the 2014 "Champion of Youth" award given annually by the Connecticut Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs at its annual legislative breakfast at the State Capitol on February 27, 2014.[25]

The Bridgeport Regional Business Council recognized State Representative Tony Hwang with the AT&T Regional IMPACT Legislator Award on June 3, 2014.[26]

The League of Conservation Voters endorsed State Rep. Hwang for the 28th Senate District on August 13, 2014.[27]

Legislative highlights[edit]

As of 28 June 2014, Hwang has introduced thirty-three bills [28] in the Connecticut General Assembly.

2015 Budget position[edit]

State Rep. Tony Hwang, R-134th District, voted along party lines against the Connecticut state budget that was ultimately passed.[29] Representative Hwang was a strong supporter of a different package referred to as the Honest and Responsible Alternative budget introduced by Representatives Cafero, Klarides, Candelora, Williams and Miner.[30][31][32] Both budgets were balanced budgets due to the requirements of the state constitution. The Rep. Hwang-supported alternative focused on cuts in social services, which has been in conflict with Hwang's public positions of support for these areas:

  • Rep. Hwang had issued press releases on community support subjects: to "shine a light" on autism,[33] supporting Operation Hope [34] and supporting women and family events.[35] In 2014, by voting for the Honest and Responsible Alternative budget and against the state's approved budget, Rep. Hwang voted to cut housing and homeless Services by $600,000, reducing temporary assistance for needy families by $4.6M, reducing aid to the disabled by $4.5M and reducing health care for children by $2.9M.[36]
  • Rep. Hwang had issued press releases on senior and elderly subjects: about increasing awareness about senior fraud,[37] supporting Elder Services [38] and proclaiming the Fairfield Senior Center as a town treasure.[39] In 2014, through the budget votes, Rep. Hwang voted to reduce the renters' rebate for elderly renters by $3M and reducing old age assistance by $1.1M.[40]
  • Rep. Hwang had issued press releases on education subjects: supporting Connecticut bio-science investments in combination with University of Connecticut's STEM,[41] a program supporting Diversity Day at Osborne Hill School,[42] and hosting a Trumbull elementary school at the state capitol.[43] In 2014, Rep. Hwang voted to reduce the Connecticut Department of Education budget by $6M, a reduction in a block grant to Connecticut State University for $3M and a reduction in Nexus special education funding by $1.2M.

Transportation record[edit]

State Rep. Tony Hwang served the Transportation Committee for the 2009-2010 session. In 2011, Rep. Hwang resigned the Transportation Committee assignment and joined the Government Administration and Elections Committee for both the 2011-2012 and 2013-2014 terms. He has not served on Transportation Legislative Committees since 2010.[44]

A Metro-North Railroad passenger train derailed in Hwang's home town of Fairfield in 2013. The accident saw eight passenger cars derail, left 46 people injured with no fatalities. The National Transportation Safety Board concluded the accident was due to track infrastructure failures.[45] In March 2014, Rep. Hwang issued a press release to say, "he will fight for 'action' and demand that Fairfield County commuters get the proper funding for transportation improvements from Hartford." [46]

In May 2014, Rep. Hwang voted against the 2015 bond authorization for state infrastructure investments. His vote against the bill was consistent with seven other legislators. Republican and Democratic leadership voted for the bill as well as 92 Democrats and 44 other Republicans.[47] The bill was passed and signed by the Connecticut governor.[48] The bond package's transportation infrastructure investments included $42M for bus and rail facilities and equipment, $10M for bridges, $5.4M in highway and bridge renewal equipment, $3M for improvements on the Merritt Parkway, $10M for a federal mandated asset management plan and $60M for investments in local roads (referred to as the Town-Aid-Road program).[49]

Environmental record[edit]

State Rep. Tony Hwang, R-134th District, was a member of the Legislative Environment Committee in 2011[50] and 2012.[51] The Connecticut League of Conservation Voters scored Hwang 57% in 2011[52] and 63% in 2012[53] for voting in favor of top environmental legislation in Connecticut. He ranked 110th out of 151 Connecticut State Representatives with a Lifetime Score of 80% as of the latest 2014 scorecard.[54] Environmental legislation that Hwang has supported has included improved labeling for Genetically Modified Organisms foods and Mattress Recycling.[55] Environmental legislation that Hwang has voted against included Reducing Phosphorus in State Waters [56] and a bill focused on Chemicals of High Concern to Children.[57]

Storm sandy cleanup[edit]

Tony participated in the Fairfield Beach area cleanup effort after 2012's Hurricane Sandy. The clean up effort was started by three young friends, Katie Boland, Lindsey Morton and Kelly Niznansky. Their idea of making a difference inspired over 1,000 volunteers and local businesses to come together to help their neighbors. There were no political party labels, partisan agendas or bureaucratic infighting. Everyone heeded the call to make a positive difference.[58][59]

Position and voting record on net neutrality[edit]

Senator Hwang believes Net Neutrality is a federal issue, citing concerns that Connecticut could become subject to litigation over whether it has the jurisdiction to regulate an interstate resource.[60]

Senator Tony Hwang, R-28th State Senate District, serves as a member of the Energy and Technology Committee,[61] whose members are from both the House and Senate.[62] On March 28, 2018, Sen. Paul Formica, R-East Lyme and co-chairman of the Energy and Technology Committee, used his authority to split the committee and allow only the four senators to vote on a draft of Net Neutrality legislation pending in the committee. Democrats have a majority in the committee when House members are included; by splitting the committee, only the Senate membership was allowed to vote. The final vote was along party lines with the two Democrats voting for the bill and two Republicans voting against. Senator Tony Hwang voted against the bill.[63][64]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Tony Hwang, Real Estate Agent - Fairfield Office (Fairfield, CT) Real Estate Office - William Raveis Residential Brokerage - Raveis.com". Raveis.com. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  2. ^ "Tony Hwang :: Connecticut House Republicans". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  3. ^ "Hwang State Senate Campaign Gets Boost from Llodra, McKinney". patch.com. The Patch. November 2, 2014. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  4. ^ "Hwang to run for state Senate, endorsed by McKinney - Minuteman News Center". minutemannewscenter.com. 2014-04-02. Retrieved 2014-06-24. 
  5. ^ "Foley Wins GOP Gubernatorial Primary in Connecticut". WSJ. 13 August 2014. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  6. ^ Salzo, Vincent (November 4, 2014). "Republican Tony Hwang Wins 28th District State Senate Seat". Fairfield Patch. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  7. ^ "In Support Of Tony Hwang". newtownbee.com. November 2, 2016. Retrieved 2018-01-17. 
  8. ^ Brown, Lori (October 19, 2016). "Westport Letter: Steinberg, Hwang Show Bipartisan Concern for Environment". Fairfield Daily Voice. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  9. ^ "Gov. John Kasich Endorses State Senator Tony Hwang". Fairfield Sun. September 26, 2016. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  10. ^ Steele, Robert (October 6, 2016). "An Endorsement for Hwang in Senate". The Hour. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  11. ^ "Veterans salute Independence Day values in Fairfield - Connecticut Post". Ctpost.com. 2010-07-05. Retrieved 2012-09-27. 
  12. ^ Gay, Patricia (November 9, 2016). "State Senator Tony Hwang Wins Re-election". The Weston Forum. 
  13. ^ Weiss, Laura (November 8, 2016). "Hwang claims victory in 28th Senate District". Fairfield Citizen. Retrieved November 8, 2016. 
  14. ^ Blair, Russell (March 24, 2016). "Ohio Gov. John Kasich Names Connecticut Campaign Chair". Hartford Courant. Retrieved March 24, 2016. 
  15. ^ University, Sacred Heart (April 13, 2016). "Presidential Candidate Gov. John Kasich Talks Issues at SHU". Sacred Heart University. 
  16. ^ Rooney, Rachel (April 22, 2016). "GOP Presidential candidate John Kasich makes stop in CT". WFSB News. Retrieved April 22, 2016. 
  17. ^ Sun, Fairfield (September 26, 2016). "Gov. John Kasich endorses State Senator Tony Hwang". Fairfield Sun. Retrieved September 26, 2016. 
  18. ^ "State Elections Agency Investigates Hwang Purchases". The Fairfield Daily Voice. 24 September 2014. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  19. ^ "State Elections Enforcement Commission to investigate Hwang". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  20. ^ "Dems' election complaint against Hwang questions spending disclosure". Fairfield Citizen. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  21. ^ http://www.ct.gov/seec/lib/seec/2014gaandstatewide/2014_cep_guide_final_march_2014.pdf
  22. ^ "Fairfield Rep. Hwang Responds To Election Complaint From Democrats". The Fairfield Daily Voice. 25 September 2014. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  23. ^ http://www.ctcadv.org/files/9513/8247/1105/First100FinalPR92112.pdf
  24. ^ "anti-domestic-violence-coalition-honors-hwang". trumbulltimes/new/localnews/. Retrieved 2012-09-27. 
  25. ^ "Hwang named 2014 'Champion of Youth' - Fairfield Sun". fairfield-sun.com. 2014-04-20. Retrieved 2014-06-24. 
  26. ^ "Hwang gets BRBC award - Trumbull Times". trumbulltimes.com. 2014-06-14. Retrieved 2014-06-24. 
  27. ^ "Connecticut League of Conservation Voters endorses Hwang - Easton Courier". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  28. ^ "Bill Information Inquiry". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  29. ^ "Vote for HB-5596 Roll Call Number 241". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  30. ^ "AN ACT MAKING ADJUSTMENTS TO STATE EXPENDITURES AND REVENUES FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 2015". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  31. ^ "Hwang, Trumbull GOP Legislators Offer Balanced Budget Plan". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  32. ^ "Vote for HB-5596 Roll Call Number 241". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  33. ^ "Hwang Joins Autism Speaks in "Shining a Light" on Autism". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  34. ^ "Operation Hope Blog". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  35. ^ "Hwang Supports the Center for Women & Families Event". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  36. ^ "AN ACT MAKING ADJUSTMENTS TO STATE EXPENDITURES AND REVENUES FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 2015". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  37. ^ "Senior Fraud and Elder Abuse Prevention Forum Held by Hwang and Kupchick". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  38. ^ "Senator Kelly, Representative Hwang Attend Elder Services Conference - Senate Republicans". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  39. ^ "Fairfield Senior Center is a Town Treasure". Tony Hwang. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  40. ^ "AN ACT MAKING ADJUSTMENTS TO STATE EXPENDITURES AND REVENUES FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 2015". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  41. ^ "Hwang: CT Bioscience Investment Leading to More Effective Cancer Research". Tony Hwang. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  42. ^ "Hwang, Savard and PTA Hosts Diversity Day at Osborn Hill Elementary School". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  43. ^ http://www.frenchtownelementary.com/pdf/Rep-Tony-Hwang-hosts-Frenchtown-Elementary-Tour-of-CT-Science-Center.pdf
  44. ^ "Tony Hwang". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  45. ^ "Track flaw went unrepaired". Connecticut Post. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  46. ^ "Hwang Pledge Support for New Rail 'Commuter Action Group'". Tony Hwang. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  47. ^ "Vote for SB-29 Roll Call Number 271". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  48. ^ "Bill Status". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  49. ^ "AN ACT AUTHORIZING AND ADJUSTING BONDS OF THE STATE FOR CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS, TRANSPORTATION AND OTHER PURPOSES". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  50. ^ "Environment Committee - Vote Tally Sheet". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  51. ^ "Environment Committee - Vote Tally Sheet". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  52. ^ "2011 House Scores". Connecticut League
    of Conservation Voters
    . Retrieved 2 October 2014.
     
  53. ^ "2012 House Scores". Connecticut League
    of Conservation Voters
    . Retrieved 2 October 2014.
     
  54. ^ "2013 Lifetime Scores". Connecticut League
    of Conservation Voters
    . Retrieved 2 October 2014.
     
  55. ^ "Bill Status". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  56. ^ "Bill Status". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  57. ^ "Bill Status". Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  58. ^ Neighbors - Fairfield Beach Area Clean Up After Hurricane Sandy on YouTube
  59. ^ "Taking-lessons-from-storm-cleanup-back-to-Hartford". ctpost/new/localnews/. Retrieved 2012-12-03. 
  60. ^ "Connecticut Lawmakers Won't Take A Stand On Net Neutrality". Connecticut Public Radio. Retrieved 3 April 2018. 
  61. ^ "About Tony - Connecticut Senate Republicans". Retrieved 3 April 2018. 
  62. ^ "Connecticut General Assembly - Energy and Technology Committee". Retrieved 3 April 2018. 
  63. ^ "Republicans block state net neutrality bill - Connecticut Post". Retrieved 3 April 2018. 
  64. ^ "State Senator Tony Hwang Net Neutrality Energy and Technology Committee 3 29 18". Retrieved 6 April 2018. 

External links[edit]