Contact: Laurence Grotheer
February 28, 2011
State Senator Andrea L. Stillman (D-Waterford) said today a bill she supports to help New London encourage continuing visits from cruise ships has cleared its first couple of legislative hurdles. Senator Stillman testified before the Commerce Committee two weeks ago on behalf of the legislation.
HB6317, An Act Appropriating Funds for the Connecticut Cruise Ship Task Force, earned approval of the Commerce Committee last week by a 16—1 margin and was today ‘reported out’ by the Legislative Commissioner’s Office on its way to the Appropriations Committee.
“Since 2002 the Connecticut Cruise Ship Task Force has been helping bring luxury liners to southeastern Connecticut with great success and with very little funding,” Senator Stillman testified. “In that time the size of the visiting cruise ships has grown exponentially; at first 400 passengers would visit New London, and that number has become as many as 3,000 passengers, with a crew of 1,800 besides.”
“Needless to say, on the day these ships dock in our city the local economy receives a real boost—as much as $1 million to $2 million has been infused into the region over the course of a season,” Senator Stillman added.
The bill calls for an appropriation of $75,000 in the year ahead so the Connecticut Cruise Ship Task Force can promote the port of New London as a destination for cruise ships and for developing the local tourism industry more broadly. Senator Stillman said she would like the language of the bill to include funding for a second year.
“The presence of these ships in our harbor helps New Londoners revisit the city’s heritage and relive its maritime tradition, bridging the divide between that rich history and today,” Senator Stillman said. “The Connecticut Cruise Ship Task Force needs this modest appropriation to help spread the word that New London is ship-shape and remains among the region’s premier ports-of-call, from its historic role when ours was a fledgling nation to the harbor’s current status as the submarine capital of the world.”
“I will continue working with my General Assembly colleagues to win support for this vital funding to enhance economic development in southeastern Connecticut,” Senator Stillman said.
Vice Chair: Transportation
Legislative Office Building
Hartford, CT 06106-1591
To see more news releases by Senator Stillman, visit our Press page (also includes releases by other Senate Democrats).
Subscribe to Senator Stillman’s RSS news feed.