Connecticut State Library Home


Collection Summary


Scope and Content

Index Terms

Photograph Archive

Other Finding Aids

Detailed Description of the Records

Series I. Constituent Correspondence 1980-1990

Series II. Legal Counsel Records 1975-1990

Series III. Assistants Records 1978-1990

Series IV. Washington Office Records 1977-1990

Series V. Press Office Records 1980-1990

Series VI. Campaign Material 1982-1986

Series VII. Oversize 1981-1990

Series VIII. Restricted 1981-1990

Series IX. Audio-Visual Materials 1989-1990

Oral Histories


Governor William  O'neill

William A. O'Neill:

An Inventory of His Gubernatorial Records at the Connecticut State Archives.

Collection Summary

Creator:Connecticut. Governor (1980-1990:O'Neill)
Title:William A. O'Neill Records
Access: The collection can only be accessed through the Connecticut State Library's History and Genealogy Department. Materials are stored off site. Researchers should call before visiting the Library to make sure about availability.
Abstract: Constituent correspondence, reports from state agencies, records of the Governor's legal counsel, records of special assistant David McQuade, correspondence and reports from the Governor's Washington Office, press releases, speeches, photographs and campaign materials including film and videotape.
Quantity: 300 boxes
Identification: RG 005, Subgroup 84
Site Authors: Barbara Austen & Edward Guitierrez


William Atchison O'Neill took the oath as the 84th Governor of Connecticut on December 31, 1980, succeeding Ella T. Grasso who resigned for health reasons. Born in Hartford, Connecticut, on August 11, 1930 to Frances and Joseph O'Neill, William attended East Hampton schools, New Britain Teacher's College (now Central Connecticut State University) and the University of Hartford. He sold insurance for Prudential Insurance Company and later served during the Korean War with the United States Air Force as a combat flyer from 1950-1953. Upon his return, he ran the family business--an East Hampton tavern where residents and politicians often met and where he, by his own admission, learned to listen.

O'Neill was active in East Hampton civic affairs. He served on the town's Zoning Board of Appeals, the Board of Finance, the Democratic Town Committee, and the Fire District Commission. In 1962, when he was aged 32, he married Natalie (Nikki) Scott Damon, a native of Leominster, Mass. O'Neill entered state politics in 1966 when he won election to the State House of Representatives; he was returned to office in the next five elections. During his tenure in the House, he acted as Assistant Majority Leader (1971-1972), Assistant Minority Leader (1973-1974), and Majority Leader (1975-1978). O'Neill served as State Chairman of the "Ella Grasso for Governor" Committee in 1974 and as Chairman of the Democratic State Central Committee.

In 1978, the Democrats nominated O'Neill as their candidate for Lieutenant Governor on the ticket with Ella Grasso; they won the election. It was sometime in December that O'Neill learned that Grasso was going to resign because of her health. On Wednesday, December 31, 1980, Ella Grasso wrote to O'Neill:

"This afternoon, your time of challenge and promise begins.

Your many years of positive and productive service to the people of Connecticut have provided you with the kind of skills and experience that will assure your success as Governor. Our citizens have always demanded the best from their elected officials, and I know that you will meet their needs with great commitment, concern and compassion.

As you take the solemn oath for the highest office our state has to offer, know that my thoughts and prayers are with you and Nikki and Joe and Ann [Fauliso]."

O'Neill did not aspire to the Governor's chair but when Grasso resigned, he took control of the state at 4:30 p.m. on New Year's Eve 1980. Joseph J. Fauliso, President Pro Tempore of the State Senate succeeded O'Neill as Lieutenant Governor. As O'Neill stated in a press release dated March 4, 1982, "I never expected that the responsibility to govern our state would be thrust upon me. Believe me, until you actually sit in the Governor's chair, you don't have the slightest comprehension of the awesome responsibilities of this important job." Those new responsibilities may have contributed to his heart attack and subsequent open-heart surgery in the winter of 1981.

For his first two years, O'Neill continued and advocated Grasso's programs. He also kept many of his loyal staff. He was not ready to make changes or pursue his own policies because he had not been elected in his own right. After his elections in 1982 and 1986, O'Neill instituted his own agenda. His major issues were the state's economic health, infrastructure, education, care of the mentally ill and retarded, assistance for the elderly, and the environment. Among his accomplishments during his ten-year tenure was the Educational Enhancement Act that raised teacher salaries and standards, the reorganization of the Higher Education system, enforcement of the Clean Water Act, and the appointment of the first female Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

In 1980, O'Neill inherited a $22 million deficit, an able cabinet and staff, growing state unemployment, and the Reagan-era federal budget cuts that had a negative impact on social programs. Five years later the state enjoyed a budget surplus economic growth, low unemployment due to a booming economy, and improved infrastructure and clean drinking water, due in large part to O'Neill's efforts. By 1990, however, the economy was again in a steep decline, the state faced yet another deficit, and polls showed a steady drop in O'Neill's popularity. He decided not to run for a third term and retired to his home in East Hampton.

Governor O'Neill characterized his approach to public service as being governed by a few basic rules: "to use common sense to solve problems; work with my colleagues to achieve sound and responsible government; and use my knowledge and experience for the benefit of all of our citizens." (Press release, March 4, 1982) His critics and his supporters agreed that he grew into the office after a shaky start. A January 7, 1987 article in the Hartford Courant, describes him as "a nice man with an honest face," someone who is friendly, reasonable, and who has common sense, a man who never goes back on his word and who values loyalty and commitment.

Return to the Table of Contents

Scope and Content

The records of Governor William A. O'Neill consist primarily of constituent and agency correspondence, 1978-1991, that are organized into a single Series called Constituent Correspondence and then arranged by topic or subject alphabetically into Sub-series. The Governor's Office received hundreds of letters every day. Staff liaisons assigned to different State agencies generally handled the correspondence related to their subject areas. Staff members whose names regularly appear include Jane Ciarleglio, Chris Cooper, Marilynn Cruz-Aponte, Ann DeNoia, Yasha Escalera, Barbara Gordon, Robert Grant, Michael Hanley, Lee Hawkins, Betty Hudson, Ann Obuchowksi, Linda Poltorak, and Joe Prevusnak. The Governor's Chief of Staff was Chad McCollam.

Many incoming letters were "bucked" or sent to a State agency for reply, and the Governor simply sent an acknowledgement to the writer. In other cases the Governor's staff instructed an agency to draft a reply that the Governor could then send over his signature, or told the agency to send its own reply with a copy for the Governor. Most of the incoming letters, therefore, are accompanied by memoranda to agencies requesting a draft reply, the draft itself (often with corrections and additions), and a copy of the Governor's response or a copy of the agency's reply. Each group of materials related to a letter or a series of letters is arranged in reverse chronological order with the government response first, then transmitting documents, and finally the initial letter. These groups of materials are then arranged chronologically within their subject areas.

O'Neill faced numerous challenges in his administration, the most important of which was the shift from the Great Society of the Johnson years to the New Federalism instituted by Ronald Reagan. Reagan dismantled many of the social programs developed in the 1960s and 1970s by drastically cutting federal funding and shifting more and more of the financial and administrative burden to the states. Constituent correspondence and agency reports dramatically illustrate the impact of these budget and programmatic cuts on the State, on municipalities, and on individuals.

Despite federal budget cuts, O'Neill focused on providing services to the State's most needy, namely the elderly, the disabled, and the homeless. He was an advocate for congregate housing, property tax relief, energy assistance, and affordable prescription medications for the elderly, and he directed his staff and legislature to provide the necessary assistance. O'Neill expanded programs for the disabled, particularly those with mental illness or mental retardation, many as a result of the consent decree signed in the CARC v. Thorne court case. In 1978 an advocacy group for the mentally retarded sued the State and the Mansfield Training School for violating its clients' 1st, 4th, 5th, 9th, and 11th amendment rights. After five years of litigation the suit was settled, with the State agreeing to transfer appropriate residents of Mansfield to community facilities. The letters and reports O'Neill received from constituents and agencies illustrate his actions in these areas.

These records also document O'Neill's efforts to provide affordable housing through financial programs such as rental assistance, mortgage assistance, and loans to developers of low-income housing units. His concern for veterans can be seen in the creation of a Department of Veterans' Affairs in 1988, the records of which are in the constituent correspondence files and in the records of Administrative Aide David McQuade.

O'Neill counted improvements in the area of education among his most important achievements. He lobbied hard for an Education Enhancement Act, passed in 1986, that raised teachers' salaries while also raising teaching standards and implemented standardized testing for students. A reorganization of higher education occurred during his tenure that included the consolidation of the four State colleges, namely Eastern, Central, Southern, and Western Connecticut State Colleges, into a university system in 1983 (not to be confused with the University of Connecticut). He also funded capital improvements on campuses around the State.

The subject or constituent files also document O'Neill's initiatives to improve the State's infrastructure, begun before the fatal Mianus River Bridge collapse in 1983, and his administration's response to tighter federal standards on air and water pollution and the disposal of solid wastes. To answer the latter problem, beginning in 1982 O'Neill supported the creation of regional resource recovery facilities to recycle solid waste and defended the concept when detractors began criticizing it.

Finally, the records found in this first series document the Governor's strategies to diversify the State's economy, attract new businesses, and retain those already in Connecticut. Many of his tax initiatives were perceived as inimical to business, but at the same time, O'Neill encouraged his administration to assist firms facing financial difficulties, supported cooperative programs between higher education and high technology companies, and hosted at least one conference on economic development.

Jay Jackson and Howard Rifkin served as O'Neill's legal counsels. Their job was to provide the Governor and his staff with opinions on sensitive issues with legal ramifications. The documents in this Series, Legal Counsel, are arranged chronologically. Among the more significant records are those related to Indian land claims in 1982 and to the question of jurisdiction over crimes committed on Indian reservations. Jackson, whose records date from 1975-1988, monitored the 1986 Supreme Court case of Tashjian v. Republican Party in which the Secretary of the State Jean Tashjian challenged the concept of open primaries. Investigative reports, correspondence, and policy changes, 1986-1988, related to allegations arising from the trade of items from the Colt gun collection at the Museum of Connecticut History are included in these files. Also of note is a U.S. Department of Commerce report on the L'Ambiance Plaza collapse in 1987. Rifkin assumed the position of Legal Counsel in 1988 and was involved in a study of the effectiveness of the 1983 consent decree from CARC v Thorne. That decree required the placement of individuals residing in a State institution into an appropriate community-based facility and generated a great deal of debate.

The most publicized controversy during O'Neill's tenure involved allegations that the State Police illegally monitored outgoing phone calls from individuals in custody to their lawyers. Howard Rifkin's notes on the case, correspondence concerning the U.S. Attorney's investigation, summonses, subpoenas, case law, and draft and final reports of the investigation, 1989, are in this Series.

In its own Sub-series are documents from both Jackson and Rifkin related to studies and negotiations involving the State and the American Shakespeare Theater in Stratford, 1983-1987. Eventually the State assumed control of the building and the land on which it stood and leased it back to a managing Board of Directors.

The files of two of the Governor's Administrative Aides for Policy and Programs are included in O'Neill's records. They are organized in the Series Assistants' Records. Robert Grant monitored the activities of the Governor's Task Force on the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities. Among his records are minutes, agendas, findings, and reports from the Task Force, and the legislation resulting from the investigation, dating from 1988-1990. David McQuade's files, 1978-1989, are more extensive and often illustrate the conceptualization, drafting and lobbying for bills in the legislature. McQuade monitored the implementation of emissions testing for State automobiles, 1983, provided suggestions for property tax relief, 1989, participated in the study of the Veterans' Home and Hospital and the creation of the Department of Veterans' Affairs, 1988-1989, and monitored the progress of the Iroquois Company's application to build a natural gas pipeline through the State, 1986-1988.

A fourth Series of records contains reports and correspondence, dating between 1977 and 1990, from Ann Sullivan and the staff of Connecticut's government office in Washington, DC. The reports, some of which were initially sent to Governor Grasso, include updates on legislation before Congress and on pending legislation with potential ramifications for the State, and reports about the activities of the National Governors' Association. Sullivan also contacted the Connecticut Congressional delegation to convey the Governor's stand on particular issues. Evidence of these contacts can also be found in the constituent correspondence files under individual topics.

Larry deBear stayed on as Press Secretary after Governor Grasso's resignation and managed O'Neill's Press Office until 1986. The office records, organized in Series V, include a typed daily schedule of the Governor's activities, 1981-1986, drafts and final text of speeches given by the Governor or by Nikki O'Neill or Lieutenant Governor Fauliso in his absence, 1980-1987, press releases announcing new initiatives or policies, 1981-1990, collections of newspaper stories concerning government issues, 1981-1986, and black and white publicity photographs, 1980-1990. The speeches and press releases together provide the most comprehensive information about O'Neill's policies.

The records of the Press Office after 1986, when Jon L. Sandberg succeeded deBear, are not nearly as complete as those from 1981-1985. Speech files contain only copies of the final text. Press releases and photographs are sparse.

O'Neill's gubernatorial campaigns in 1982 and 1986 are documented primarily by motion picture film, audiotapes, and videotapes used to produce his radio and television advertisements found in the final Series. The ads were created by Raymond Strother Ltd. of Washington, DC. The bulk of the material consists of raw footage or sound. Only the final versions of each advertisement have been transferred to VHS for access by researchers. The advertisements are supplemented by press releases, answers to questionnaires sent by constituent groups, and material on the campaign of Republican rival in the 1982 election, Lewis Rome.

The Governor's office transferred the correspondence files to the State Library on an annual basis. His staff filed the material by subject or agency and began afresh each year. They also arranged the letters by name of correspondent. Because of these filing practices some of the subject headings changed, and not everyone filed things under the same subject. The State Archives staff decided that, to improve access to these records, each year's worth of files would be interfiled with the others to create a series encompassing the entire ten years of O'Neill's tenure into one alphabetical Series. In addition, each file was reorganized from an alphabetical arrangement to a chronological one, with a few exceptions. However, the folder names were copied exactly, with clarifications in brackets. The organization of the materials into Series essentially followed the original groupings found when the records were inventoried.

In order to protect the privacy of individuals who wrote or who were the subject of letters, names, addresses, telephone numbers, social security or credit card numbers, and medical information have been redacted. The original documents exist in a Series entitled "Restricted" which is not open to researchers.

Newsprint, thermo fax, wet photocopies and mimeographed materials have been copied onto buffered paper to preserve the information. The originals were disposed of. Audio and videotapes sent to the Governor with correspondence are stored separately in their own box at the end of the collection. Oversized materials have been removed from the files and placed in a box also found toward the end of the collection. Sheets of paper identifying the documents have been placed in the files to refer the researcher to the oversized material. Published items removed from the collection and transferred to the appropriate division in the State Library are identified by a Separation Form placed in the file to mark the location of the publication.

Return to the Table of Contents

Index Terms

Fauliso, Joseph J.
Grant, Robert
Jackson, Jay.
McQuade, David.
Rifkin, Howard
Aged--Government policy--Connecticut.
Environmental policy--Connecticut.
Mentally handicapped--Connecticut.
Document Types:

Return to the Table of Contents

Other Finding Aids

An unpublished finding aid for the William A. O'Neill Records is located at the History and Genealogy desk at the Connecticut State Library.

Return to the Table of Contents

Detailed Description of the Records

Series I. Constituent Correspondence 1980-1990

1Subseries 1. Abortion 1981-1990
This Sub-series consists primarily of letters in which people express their stand for and against abortion. O'Neill replies that, while he is personally against abortion, it is the law and he will uphold the law.
1-5Subseries 2. Acknowledgements 1981-1990
Letters in this Sub-series concern a wide range of topics, with many correspondents expressing political opinions. The Governor responds simply by acknowledging having received the letter.
5-7Subseries 3. Administrative Services 1981-1991
Letters concerning the activities of the Department of Administrative Services constitute the bulk of the records in this Sub-series. The Department is responsible for providing services, supplies, equipment, office facilities, and personnel to other state agencies. Administrative Services encompasses Public Works (until 1988 when it became a separate department), State Properties Review Board and the Division of Personnel.
Topics covered in the letters include management of state properties, complaints about the misuse of state automobiles, questions about and problems with the state bidding process, employee suggestions for improving state government, and missives from companies soliciting state business. Most of the letters are "bucked" to the Department for response. Also includes monthly reports from the Department and memoranda from Commissioners Elisha Freedman (1980-1986) and Stephen J. Negri (1987-1990).
7Subseries 4. Affirmative Action 1981-1990
This Sub-series encompasses affirmative action plans for the Governor's office. Also included are notices sent to government agencies regarding the need to file a plan or of the department's noncompliance. Letters and documents concerning affirmative action can also be found in the Sub-series "Human Rights and Opportunities, Commission of." The Commission was responsible for enforcing affirmative action for the state and administratively was part of the Department of Administrative Services.
8-12Subseries 5. Aging 1981-1990
Letters in this Sub-series concern benefits and programs for the elderly. Many individuals outline their financial and physical difficulties in detail and as a result, some names have been redacted. The programs discussed include Medicare, Social Security, property tax assistance, heating assistance, nutrition programs, and ConnPACE, the state's prescription subsidy program. ConnPACE (the Connecticut Pharmaceutical Assistance Contract) began providing benefits to the elderly on April 1, 1986 under P.A. 85-573. The act was amended in 1987 to include the disabled under the program.
President Reagan's federal budgets severely threatened Medicare benefits. The 1983 budget proposed cuts that transferred financial burdens and responsibilities to the states and to individuals. Connecticut residents expected to lose approximately $30 million in Medicare coverage through increases in insurance premiums and non-reimbursed charges. Governor O'Neill made his displeasure known in a letter dated March 22, 1982.
The Governor's staff "bucked" or forwarded a large proportion of the letters to the Department on Aging for a response. Also included in this sub series are memoranda sent or received by Commissioners Marin J. Shealy (1980-1982) and Mary Ellen Klinck (1983-1990), and bi-weekly reports to the Governor. Additional information on issues concerning the elderly can be found in the sub-series "Congregate Housing" and "Housing--Elderly."
12-15Subseries 6. Agriculture 1981-1990
Constituent letters, and correspondence and reports from the Department of Agriculture make up this Sub-series. The Department is responsible for safeguarding the public through grading and inspecting farm products and livestock, and for developing and expanding the markets for Connecticut agricultural products. It was also involved in the administration of the farmland preservation program in which farmers could sell development rights in their property to the state.
Documents concern such issues as farmland preservation, outbreaks of avian influenza, problems with flies, the development of a horse park, the "Connecticut Grown" marketing campaign, pros and cons on the use of pesticides, efforts to have the state government fund the Bloomfield Farm Implement Museum, and the dispute over jurisdiction of clamming beds in Westport. About half of the letters are signed by the Governor, particularly ones that address policy issues; the rest were sent to the Department for response. Commissioners were Leonard E. Krogh (1980-1982), H. Earl Waterman (1983) and Kenneth B. Anderson (1984-1990).
This sub series also includes correspondence and reports from the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station (which was part of the Office of Policy and Management) and directives from the United States Department of Agriculture. These latter two subject areas are filed after the general correspondence.
16-18Subseries 7. Alcohol [and Drug Abuse] 1981-1990
Letters in this Sub-series concern the need to reduce alcohol-related highway deaths, to address teenage addiction, and to fund rehabilitation and treatment centers. Other correspondents make a case for or against raising the drinking age, or make suggestions for preventing substance abuse. Federal legislation addressing prevention and treatment of substance abuse, grant applications to the federal government, and Connecticut legislation to transfer substance abuse activities from the Department of Mental Health to the independent Connecticut Alcohol and Drug Abuse Commission (CADAC) are also included. Documents also describe state programs to stop substance abuse, including "Drugs Don't Work" and include reports and memoranda to and from the Director of CADAC, Donald J. McConnel. The names of alcohol and drug abusers have been redacted from the records.
19Subseries 8. Appointments 1981-1990
This Sub-series consists of letters from the Governor appointing individuals to commissions and boards, and recommendations or requests for appointments. Correspondence about appointments between 1982-1987 can also be found in the Sub-series "Acknowledgements" and "Recommendations." These letters are arranged alphabetically by last name of the appointee or the potential appointee.
Subseries 9. Appropriations 1988-1990
Reports to the Governor on allocations passed by the legislature's Appropriations Committee constitute this Sub-series.
Subseries 10. Arts 1981-1990
Letters of concern about the viability of the Commission on the Arts, announcements of Commission grant awards, and correspondence from arts organizations in the state asking state support for arts programs are found in this Sub-series. The Commission is charged with encouraging and supporting the state's artistic and cultural development and is part of the Department of Education. Chairmen of the Commission's Board were June K. Goodman (1980-1982, 1990) and Susan R. Kelly (1983-1989).
20Subseries 11. Atlanta1981
This Sub-series contains letters of condolence from the Governor to families whose children were murdered in Atlanta by Wayne Williams.
20-22Subseries 12. Attorney General 1981-1990
The Attorney General is an elected officer of the state and represents state government in suits and other civil proceedings. The office also acts as legal counsel for state officials and provides opinions on questions of law to state agencies, state officers and the General Assembly.
Legal opinions, suits against the state, and reports on cases are found in this Sub-series. Most of the documents are addressed to Governor's Counsel, Jay Jackson. Several cases are worthy of mention. One contested the Governor's 1982 election while another involved the Republican Party v Julia Tashjian (Secretary of the State) over the matter of open primaries. A suit was also brought against Commissioner of Mental Health Gareth D. Thorne by parents and guardians of the mentally ill, claiming community care was better than institutionalization, a suit that the parents won.
The sub series also includes congratulations to the Governor on naming the first woman Attorney General, Clarine Nardi Riddle (1989-1990), and constituent letters that are "bucked" to the AG's office. These letters address such subjects as appealing for the Governor's intervention in a case, complaints about attorneys and the courts, concern about the high cost of gasoline, complaints about Attorney General Carl Ajello (1980-1982), requests for permission to sue the state, complainants not happy with the results of their trials, and allegations of misconduct by court officials. Joseph I. Lieberman held this office between 1983 and 1988, before his election to the United States Senate.
Text from all of the cases mentioned above can be found in the Court Archives.
22-24Subseries 13. Auditors 1981-1991
Auditors Henry J. Becker, Jr. and Leo V. Donohue filed reports with the Governor of irregularities found during audits of various government agencies. These irregularities included thefts, accounting problems, vandalism, employee misconduct, procedural errors and ethics violations. This Sub-series also includes the Governor's letters to agency heads requesting an explanation of the auditors' findings, and the Commissioners' responses to the Governor and the auditors outlining how they already had or how they planned to make corrections. Audits can also be found in Sub-series about individual agencies.
24-25Subseries 14. Banking 1981-1991
This Sub-series consists primarily letters complaining about individual banks, and credit card and investment companies. Other correspondence outlines the pros and cons of federal and state regulation of banks, provide opinions for and against bank mergers, and report landlords withholding security deposits. The Governor received reports of illegal actions, information on the Truth in Lending Act and bi-weekly reports from Banking Commissioners David H. Neiditz (1980-1981), Brian J. Woolf (1982-1985) and Howard B. Brown (1986-1990). The Banking Department is responsible for the regulation and examination of financial institutions in the state.
26Subseries 15. Bond Commission 1981,1991
Correspondence from the Governor naming Joseph Fauliso as acting in the Governor's place, and an announcement to Hartford about a successful bonding issue comprises this Sub-series.
26-27Subseries 16. Budget 1981-1990
Constituent letters in this Sub-series express opinions about budget cuts affecting specific programs, complaints about waste in state government, outrage at new taxes or the idea of a state income tax, and suggestions for balancing the budget. Correspondents also comment on federal budget cuts.
In 1981, the state faced a $22 million deficit, due in large part to the elimination of the federal revenue sharing program. In addition, President Reagan proposed cuts in expenditures on 300 domestic programs including education, employment services, housing assistance and food assistance, shifting more burden to the states. The Governor held a series of forums across Connecticut to hear public views on the impact of Federal budget cuts and this Sub-series includes written comments submitted as part of those hearings.
In 1983 O'Neill was forced to increase taxes in order to provide the services he felt the state needed to offer the poor, the elderly, the homeless and the mentally ill. As the state and national economies improved in the middle years of the 1980s, revenues were high enough to create a surplus, which O'Neill placed into a "Rainy Day Fun" to cover future deficits.
President Reagan's 1988 budget proposal eliminated 21 programs and reduced funding to an additional 15. Services included in these cuts were vocational education, urban development grants and drug abuse programs. O'Neill's next budget crisis occurred the following year when, facing another deficit influenced by the federal budget and a failing economy, he proposed a very unpopular increase in the sales tax and the addition of a sales tax on utilities and on services such as accounting and architectural design. Despite public opinion to the contrary, he held firmly to his opposition to a state income tax, yet insisted upon continuing social service programs for the state's neediest citizens.
27Subseries 17. Business-Labor Summit 1981
Invitations from the Governor to business and labor leaders to a meeting to discuss the business climate in Connecticut, productivity, job training, worker safety, energy supply and cost, and the promotion of Connecticut constitute this Sub-series.
Subseries 18. CAUSA 1986-1989
The Connecticut Association for United Spanish Action was a statewide organization established to provide technical assistance in management, fiscal planning and program development to Hispanic community-based organizations that provide services to Hispanic poor and working-class families. Marilynn Cruz-Aponte was the Governor's liaison with the group. The letters in this Sub-series provide information about the Association, discuss the potential for politically lobbying, invite the group to help develop programs at the Commission on the Arts, and discuss housing issues.
Subseries 19. Care and Share 1984-1990
The Governor's annual Thanksgiving food drive started in 1984. This Sub-series consists primarily of thank you letters to volunteers and donors who made the program a success.
27-28Subseries 20. Census 1989-1990
Documents in this Sub-series illustrate the state's preparations for the 1990 federal census, including an awareness campaign entitled "Making Connecticut Count."
28-31Subseries 21. Children 1981-1990
The Department of Children and Youth Services was a multi-service agency providing direct services such as child protection, foster care, adoptions, juvenile corrections and rehabilitation, prevention of delinquency, and treatment of mental illness and emotional disturbance. The department operated four facilities: Long Lane School in Middletown, Connecticut Children's Place in East Windsor, High Meadows in Hamden, and Wilderness School in Hartland. During O'Neill's administration the two Commissioners were Mark J. Marcus (1980-1986) and Amy B. Wheaton (1987-1990). In 1993 the agency became the Department of Children and Families. Administrative Aide Mildred Williams handled issues and correspondence related to DCYS.
This series consists of letters concerning allegations of abuse, day care needs, custody battles (handled by the Family Division of the Superior Court), foster licenses, adoption problems and questions, funding for programs and parents anxious for placement for their children or for the return of parental rights. Other documents include the Governor's speech at the Connecticut White House Conference on Children and Youth, reports from the DCYS Advisory Committee, grant applications to the federal government, and a law suit against the department for not fulfilling its mandate due to lack of resources.
Also included in this Sub-series is correspondence related to Child Support Enforcement, which during O'Neill's administration was part of the Department of Human Resources. The letters ask the Governor to enforce child support from absent fathers, and complain about problems receiving payments and about the child support laws in general. These records have been redacted to protect the privacy of minors and their parents.
32Subseries 22. Civil Aeronautics Board 1981-1982
The Civil Aeronautics Board was a federal agency that promoted and regulated the civil air industry within the United States and between the U.S. and foreign countries. The Board was abolished effective January 1, 1985.
The records in this Sub-series consist primarily of applications by airlines to change or add to their authorized routes. These are supplemented by orders to show cause, and fitness determinations for various airlines.
Subseries 23. Civil Preparedness 1981-1988
Part of the Department of Public Safety, the Office of Civil Preparedness was responsible for minimizing or controlling the effects of major disasters. The agency planned, coordinated, funded and evaluated statewide efforts to protect lives and property before, during and after natural disasters, man-made accidents, and attacks by enemies of the United States. Frank Mancuso directed the office. On October 1, 1988, the agency became the Office of Emergency Management, and documents from that date on are filed under "Emergency".
Several of the natural disasters which visited the state during O'Neill's tenure and which are documented in part by the records in this Sub-series include a statewide drought and a tornado in Windsor Locks during 1981, flooding in June 1982 and the spring of 1984, and Hurricane Gloria in September 1985.
Records include nuclear preparedness plans and exercises, information about the emergency communications center, plans for handling emergencies, information about FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) funding for the state office, and information concerning national flood insurance. There are very few constituent letters.
Subseries 24. Claims Commission 1982-1990
The Claims Commission is an executive office charged with hearing and determining claims against the state such as petitions for payment or for refund of money or requests for permission to sue the state.
The records in this Sub-series consist of inmates' claims of items stolen while in prison, citizen's claims for damage to personal property due to state negligence, and annual reports to the Governor. Most of the letters are "bucked" to the Commission for reply.
33Subseries 25. CONEG 1982-1989
The Coalition for Northeastern Governors (CONEG) developed, presented and lobbied for issues affecting states in the northeast. Issues they addressed included acid rain, natural gas pricing, and infrastructure. O'Neill was elected chairman of the group in 1984.
The letters in the Sub-series are between members of the coalition discussing the various governors' stands on issues and strategies for implementing their plans. Other letters concerning the organization's activities can be found under specific topics.
Subseries 26. Combined Health Appeal
The Combined Health Appeal was an executive program to raise funds for charity from state employees. Annually, the Governor appointed a chairman, and each department had its own coordinator. The letters in the Sub-series are to agency heads announcing the upcoming campaign, and reports from the chairmen to the Governor about the success of the fund raising.
Subseries 27. Commendations and Congratulations 1981-1988
Governor's letters thanking people for jobs well done, letters from constituents praising state employees, letters congratulating individuals on birthdays, marriages or anniversaries, awards, scholarships, and other achievements. Also includes the Governor's letter nominating Governor John Dempsey for an award from Common Cause.
Subseries 28. Commission on Connecticut's Future 1987-1988
Established in 1978, the Commission was attached to the Office of Policy and Management for administrative purposes. It was responsible for studying, analyzing and forecasting quality of life in Connecticut for the future and to build awareness of and concern for the state's future among its residents. The Commission's statutory authority was repealed effective July 1, 1989 and its responsibilities transferred to the Department of Economic Development.
The documents in this Sub-series consist entirely of annual reports.
33-34Subseries 29. Comptroller 1981-1990
The Comptroller is an elected office and the mission is to provide accounting and financial services, to administer employee benefits, to develop accounting policy and exercise accounting oversight, and to prepare financial reports.
This Sub-series consists primarily of financial reports prepared by Comptroller J. Edward Caldwell, supplemented by other reports and a few constituent letters.
34Subseries 30. Congregate Housing 1978-1982
Stamford Representative Anthony Truglia introduced the concept of congregate housing for the elderly to the General Assembly at the urging of his constituent Joan Fitzpatrick. Congregate housing provided assisted living for the elderly who did not need medical care. The records in this Sub-series consist of correspondence and memoranda between Truglia and Governor O'Neill and Commissioner of Housing Joseph Canale, and between Fitzpatrick and Governor's Aide Betty Hudson. The legislation that they envisioned, one that provided rental subsidies to the poor elderly so they could afford to live in their choice of congregate housing facilities, was changed by the legislature and passed as S.A. 80-51. This act appropriated only $50,000 for a test of the rental subsidy plan and by December 1980 Commissioner on Aging Marin Shealey decided not to implement the act. The correspondence represents Truglia and Fitzpatrick's attempt to have the legislation changed and enacted as originally proposed.
Also among the correspondence are letters concerning the conversion of the Willard School in Stamford into congregate housing and the delay in the project, and reports on Park Manor, a congregate housing facility in Stamford owned and operated by Joan Fitzpatrick, and on another institution, Smith House. The administrators of both facilities repeatedly exchanged allegations of mismanagement.
Additional information on congregate housing can also be found in the Sub-series "Aging" and in "Housing--Elderly."
Subseries 31. Congress 1982
O'Neill maintained political connections by writing letters of congratulations. In this Sub-series are congratulatory messages to individuals nominated to run for U.S. Congress and Senate, the Connecticut General Assembly and Senate, and County Sheriff; to State Senators appointed to leadership roles; and to newly elected State Representatives. Also included are letters from the Governor to the Connecticut Congressional delegation.
35Subseries 32. Conrail 1980-1981
The federal government via the Regional Rail Reorganization Act of 1974 created Conrail; it began operations in April 1976. The rail company was charged with rebuilding the railroad system in the northeast and midwest, returning it to profitability and then turning control of the system back to private business. By the early 1980s, the company was experiencing financial trouble and trying to divest itself of unprofitable lines.
In 1980-81, the Providence and Worcester Railroad Company proposed taking over Conrail's operation of all railroad lines east of the Hudson River and operating all freight service without subsidy for at least five years. The records in this Sub-series document the research conducted by the state Department of Transportation into the financial viability of Providence and Worcester to live up to its promises. Two reports from the U.S. Railway Association are included. Providence and Worcester did assume control of freight lines east of the Connecticut River in 1982.
Additional information about Conrail can be found in the Sub-series "Transportation--Railroads."
Subseries 33. Consumer Counsel 1980-1990
The Division of Consumer Counsel is an independent agency responsible for representing the interests of Connecticut utility consumers. The division reviews requests from utilities for rate increases, advocates for adequate customer service and assists consumers with utility complaints.
Records in this Sub-series consist of biweekly reports, reports on rate hearings, and consumer complaints about cable television programming and rates, phone service, and rates for electricity. Consumer complaints were "bucked" to the Counsel for reply.
36-39Subseries 34. Consumer Protection 1980-1990
The Department of Consumer Protection enforces legislation intended to protect the consumer from injury by product use or merchandising deceit. The department inspects food and drug-related establishments, and bedding and upholstery dealers and manufacturers. It also conducts investigations into alleged fraudulent activities, answers consumer complaints, and issues and reviews occupational licenses.
Correspondence and reports in this Sub-series consist of complaints from consumers about faulty products, dishonest retailers or fraudulent companies, questions about occupational licensing, information about the Tylenol ® tampering scare, questions about the automobile "lemon law," and semi-monthly reports from Commissioner Mary M. Heslin.
Marilynn Cruz-Aponte and Linda A. Poltorak were staff liaisons from the Governor's office to the Department.
40-47Subseries 35. Correction 1981-1990
O'Neill faced a dramatic increase in the number of individuals incarcerated or in custody and housed in the state's correction facilities from 1980-1990. In 1980, barely 4000 men and women were incarcerated; by 1990, that number had increased to 9,589. The increase was due in large part to a change in sentencing laws. Public Act 80-442 eliminated indeterminate sentences (a range of years from a minimum term to a maximum one) and replaced them with determinate sentences where an inmate served a full term, minus time for good behavior. The answer to prison overcrowding was constructing new facilities, expanding existing jails and prisons, converting vacant state properties for correction use, and increasing the use of community-based alternatives to incarceration including halfway houses and Supervised Home Release. In 1981, the state had 13 correctional facilities. By 1990, that number had increased to 22. Between 1980-1990, the state added 5000 new correction beds and an additional 6000 were under development. The use of supervised home release also increased annually and proved to be a controversial solution to overcrowding.
During O'Neill's administration, three men ran the Department of Correction. John R. Manson (1980-1983) was succeeded by his deputy, Raymond M. Lopes. Correspondence in this sub series as well as press releases and a report to the Governor in the series "Press Office", document the controversy surrounding Lopes that led to his "retirement" in 1987. Larry R. Meachum assumed control of the department in 1988 and reorganized the agency to improve operations. A report of that reorganization is found in "Memos to/from Commissioner," 1990.
The correspondence in this Sub-series includes letters from inmates and their families complaining about their treatment or prison conditions, asserting their innocence, requesting a transfer to or from Connecticut, and requesting a pardon or parole. Some inmates wrote to the Governor on a regular basis. Constituents wrote to the Governor to protest early release, supervised home release and short term passes for violent criminals and to object to expanding or building new correctional facilities. They also wrote to the Governor to express their opinions for and against the death penalty. O'Neill believed that capital punishment was a strong deterrent to violent crime, and thought Connecticut's law should be strengthened. However, he did veto a bill in 1986 that would have included children under 18, the mentally ill, and the mentally retarded, among those eligible to receive a death sentence.
In addition to correspondence, this Sub-series contains dockets and minutes of hearings conducted by the Board of Parole. Requests for pardons sent to the Governor are arranged alphabetically by the name of the inmate. All other records are arranged chronologically. The Governor "bucked" or forwarded most of the correspondence to the department for reply. Yasha Escalera and Anne Obuchowski handled staff liaison to the department.
Additional documents concerning the Department of Corrections can be found in the Sub-series "Crime."
47Subseries 36. Council of State Governments 1981-1990
The Council of State Governments is a non-partisan, nonprofit organization that provides state officials with the tools and strategies needed to implement effective policy and programs through leadership education, research and information services. It also monitors the federal government and its impact on state issues.
The materials in this Sub-series consist of reports from the Council, agendas and minutes of meetings, and correspondence concerning regional conferences.
Subseries 37. C.R.C.O.G. 1983, 1988
The Capitol Region Council of Governments (CRCOG) is guided by the chief elected officials of the 29 Greater Hartford municipalities, namely the mayors, first selectmen, and town council chairmen. Among its responsibilities, the Council helps members improve governmental efficiency and save tax dollars through shared services and other direct service initiatives; promote efficient transportation systems, responsible land use and preservation of land and natural resources and effective economic development; advocates for the region and its towns with the State and Federal governments; and assists local governments and citizens in articulating, advocating and implementing the vision, needs and values of their regional community. The Governor received two meeting notices and a memorandum about the mid-Connecticut solid waste project. More information about the latter project can be found in the Sub-series "CRRA," "Environmental Protection," and "OPM--Solid Waste."
47-48Subseries 38. C.R.R.A. 1982-1990
The Connecticut Resources Recovery Authority (CRRA) is a statewide solid waste management authority created by the General Assembly in 1973. This quasi-public authority is an example of providing essential public services in partnership with the private sector. It serves three out of every four of Connecticut municipalities.
During O'Neill's tenure, CRRA began locating potential sites and then developing waste-to-energy projects in Bridgeport, Hartford (Mid-Connecticut), Preston (Southeast) and Wallingford to respond to the solid waste crisis and the closure of landfills. Records of the CRRA found in this Sub-series include quarterly reports, reports on landfills meeting notices, and letters from constituents who oppose placing a recovery facility in their towns.
48Subseries 39. Crime 1983-1990
The Governor's staff filed under "crime" documents that related to the topic in general, although several items relating to the Department of Corrections can be found in this Sub-series. Of note among the files are information about the Citizens Crime Commission, the Victims of Crime Act of 1984, and the Save Our Streets program, which put State Troopers in the cities.
Subseries 40. Criminal Injuries 1983-1988
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Board was created by P.A. 78-261 "to provide protection and medical compensation to those who are innocent victims of crime . . ." Its function is to compensate innocent victims of crime, or the dependents in case of a death, for expenses incurred as a result of the personal injury or death of the victim, loss of earning power, or pecuniary loss to the dependents of the deceased victim. In 1987, the board's responsibilities were expanded to include direct victim services. Because of the change, the name of the agency became the Commission on Victim Services. For administrative purposes, the agency is part of Office of Policy and Management. Anne Obuchowski was Governor's staff liaison.
The correspondence in this Sub-series consists of a request for information and efforts to settle a claim. In addition there is a certification of money awarded crime victims.
Subseries 41. Democratic Committees 1981
The Democratic Party had fund-raising committees at the national and state levels. Correspondence between the Governor and the Democratic National Committee and the Democratic State Central Committee comprise this Sub-series. The letters indicate O'Neill's strong loyalty to the Democratic Party.
Subseries 42. Eastern States Exposition 1981, 1988
The Eastern States Exposition, commonly known as "The Big E" and held each fall, is New England's great state fair. Each of the six New England states participates in agricultural programs, horse shows, crafts, and the Avenue of the States where each state has a replica of their capital and displays of their activities and products. The grounds are used for entertainment, exhibitions and shows throughout the rest of the year to meet the mission of providing year-round opportunities for education and entertainment. The governing board consists of business and political leaders from each state.
The records in this sub-series primarily consist of minutes of the Connecticut Trustees' meetings.
Subseries 43. Economic Conversion Task Force 1984-1988
The Economic Conversion Task Force of the Connecticut Freeze Campaign provided educational literature and seminars to businesses and the public about the need to diversify Connecticut's economy in preparation for a nuclear weapons freeze. The task force was created in 1982 and, by 1986, the Governor was exploring the possibility of forming his own economic diversity task force. Correspondence between the Governor and the Chairman of the Task Force, journal and news articles, and Task Force information and research on Connecticut's economy and industries comprise this Sub-series.
48-54Subseries 44. Economic Development 1981-1990
The purpose of the Department of Economic Development is to strengthen and stimulate the state's economy through creation and retention of jobs by attracting new companies and nurturing the growth and expansion of existing businesses. The Department's responsibilities included expanding foreign trade, marketing tourism, and diversifying the state's economic base. It was also responsible for managing the Connecticut Building at the Big E.
Connecticut was the first state to pass "Urban Enterprise Zone" legislation, which became effective July 1982. The purpose of the legislation was to develop new economic incentives to stimulate capital investment in urban centers and economically depressed areas. The correspondence, reports and memoranda in this Sub-series document the implementation of that legislation. Other areas of activity found in these records include the creation of an urban jobs program; the development of foreign trade with Japan, China, Korea, Russia and Germany; monitoring the impact of the Free Trade Agreement with Canada; saving the Bloomfield Farm Implement Museum; attracting high technology firms through the Technology Advisory Committee; and communicating with and acting on directives from the U.S. Department of Commerce.
O'Neill enumerates his own accomplishments in strengthening Connecticut's economy and characterizes his general approach as "pro-business." In 1988 he introduced and the General Assembly passed the Financial Capital Act, which made low cost capital funds available to small and medium sized manufacturers. In 1989, legislation led to the creation of Connecticut Innovations, Inc., a quasi-public organization to assist entrepreneurs in developing high technology growth companies. The Governor appointed the Connecticut Employment and Training Commission to restructure the state's education and training programs so employees would have the necessary skills to move into high technology and other jobs.
During O'Neill's tenure, three men served as Commission, Edward J. Stockton (1980-1981), John J. Carson (1982-1988) and Stephen J. Heintz (1989-1990). The Governor's staff liaison to the Department was Joseph Prevusnak.
54-62Subseries 45. Education 1981-1990
O'Neill listed his major accomplishments in education as the reorganization of the higher education system, enhancement of teachers' salaries while raising professional standards, demanding more from students, financing equal educational opportunity, expanding adult education, and waging war on illiteracy. Some of these accomplishments are illustrated in the records in this sub series.
The Governor's staff filed reports and correspondence regarding elementary and higher education under one subject heading although different agencies and boards administered them. Elementary, high school, vocational and adult education came under the purview of the Board of Education. The administrative arm of the Board was the Department of Education, which was responsible for providing technical assistance to educators, enforcing education laws, and advocating for equal access to education for children and youth. O'Neill's major initiatives in elementary education consisted of the Education Enhancement Act and the implementation of mastery tests. A report from the Governor's Commission on Equity and Excellence in Education encouraged O'Neill to lobby for new legislation. The Education Enhancement Act, passed by the legislature in special session in 1986, was a three-year, $300 million education reform package. It enhanced teachers' salaries by as much as 50% while also raising entry-level standards and the requirements for certification. In addition, funding enabled school systems to hire additional teachers to reduce the teacher-pupil ratio.
The Governor reasoned that if the state required more from teachers, it should also require more from its students. As a result, the first mastery test was administered to 4th grade students in 1985. The following year, pupils in the 4th, 6th and 8th grades were required to take the test. The goal of equal access to education led to a change in state funding when the Education Cost Sharing Grant replace the Guaranteed Tax Base in 1988.
Also part of the Department of Education is the Division of Rehabilitation Services. It is responsible for restoring persons with disabilities to productive work and independence through education and training programs and establishing independent living centers.
Commissioners of the Board of Education from 1980-1990 were Mark R. Shedd, 1980-1982, and Gerald N. Tirozzi, 1983-1990. Christopher Cooper and Marilynn Cruz-Aponte were the staff liaisons from the Governor's office.
Reorganization of the Department of Higher Education in 1983 replaced the Board of Higher Education, composed of college representatives, with the Board of Governors for Higher Education, consisting of community leaders and citizens. The Board of Governors had more authority than its predecessor did for implementing policies. It was responsible for developing policy, consolidating budgets, closing duplicative programs and non-viable institutions, and licensing and accrediting programs and institutions.
Between 1983-1989, state funds for higher education increased 92%. The funds were allocated for financial aid, capital improvements and maintenance, new faculty positions, building research partnerships between colleges and industry in the area of high technology, providing equitable tuition rates, and improving library collections. In 1983, the four state colleges became known as Connecticut State University under a single Board of Trustees. A similar consolidation occurred in 1988-89 when a unified Board was created for the community and technical colleges.
Commissioners of the Board of Higher Education during O'Neill's tenure were Michael S. Usdan, 1980-1981, and Norma Glasgow, 1982-1990.
Also included in this Sub-series are materials relating to the Board of Education and Services for the Blind, which is part of the Department of Human Resources, and directives from the U.S. Department of Education.
62Subseries 46. Elections 1981-1989
Primarily letters of congratulations or condolence to Democratic party candidates elected or defeated in statewide and municipal elections. Also included are thank you letters to Democratic Town Committees.
Subseries 47. Ella Grasso Foundation 1981
Letters concerning the formation of the Ella Grasso Foundation. The family established the foundation to provide scholarships for students of political science and government and for other charitable programs. This Sub-series also includes minutes and correspondence related to the Ella Grasso Memorial Statue Committee that raised funds to place a marble statue of the former Governor in one of the niches around the capitol.
Subseries 48. Emergency Management 1989-1990
The Office of Emergency Management was the continuation of the Office of Civil Preparedness; the name was changed in October 1988. Part of the Department of Public Safety, the Office was responsible for minimizing or controlling the effects of major natural or man-made disasters. It also had responsibility for nuclear safety preparedness. Frank Mancuso directed the Office.

Documents in this Sub-series include notices of nuclear emergency exercises, a report on the impact of federal budget cuts, notices of Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grant awards, information about hurricane preparedness, annual reports, and correspondence between the Governor and the White House related to cuts in disaster relief programs.

Additional material may be found in the Sub-series "Office of Emergency Management."

Subseries 49. Environmental Protection 1981-1991

Connecticut's Department of Environmental Protection was established one year after the creation of the federal department in 1970. Public and government interest in preserving the environment reached its zenith that year, ushering in the " Environmental Decade." Several environmental crises prompted this increased awareness. Several offshore oil spills threatened beaches and fragile ecosystems. The Cuyahoga River in Ohio burned for 8 days fed by pollution on top of the water, mercury was found in the Great Lakes, and PCBs were discovered on the floor of the Hudson River. In addition, manned space flight gave the world a new perspective on the fragile planet.

April 22, 1970 marked the first "Earth Day." More than 12 federal regulatory statutes were enacted, including the National Environmental Policy Act, the Clean Air Act, the Soil and Water Resource Conservation Act, the Coastal Zone Management Act, and the Water Quality Improvement Act. These were followed by additional statutes setting minimum standards for contaminant levels, closing solid waste dumps, and promoting the recycling and recovery of toxic wastes.

The state's Department of Environmental Protection responded to federal regulations and it is those responses, and public reaction to them, that constitute the bulk of the records in this Sub-series. Also included in these materials are documents relating to the U.S. Department of the Interior and The Army Corps of Engineers (some of which were incorrectly filed among military records). Most of the incoming letters were forwarded to the Department for a draft reply for the Governor's signature, for the Department's direct reply, or for the agency's information. The Governor also forwarded published reports and marketing materials from companies selling their products or services.

Records are organized chronologically. Topics such as Acid Rain, Nuclear Waste and Solid Waste were often given their own folders by the Governor's staff. These follow the general Environmental Protection folders in alphabetical order and then chronologically. Many of the topics overlap, so information in the Low-level Radioactive Waste folder can also be found in Nuclear Waste folder. Researchers should check both the Landfill and Solid Waste folders for information on those topics.

The Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection consists of divisions and bureaus that address industrial permits, acquisition and management of state-owned land, conservation of natural resources, hunting licenses, forest services, enforcing laws and regulations relating to pollution control and resource protection, and Indian affairs. In response to federal regulations from the 1970s and 1980s, the Department developed plans for closing landfills and replacing them with resource recovery or trash burning plants. It administered state legislation creating a hazardous waste site discovery and clean-up program and published an inventory of sites in Connecticut. The Department also enforced the removal of underground oil and gas tanks, developed regional recycling projects, and formulated regulations and procedures for responding to oil spills.

Locally, the state purchased the Shakespeare Theater in Stratford in 1982 and began renovations in 1988. Also in 1982, the legislature passed the Connecticut Water Diversion Policy Act requiring any individual or institution to apply for permission to divert any of the state's water resources, including underground or surface streams, tidal water, estuaries, ponds, marshes, and drainage system.

Residents expressed their support of or opposition to the construction of the Iroquois Gas Transmission System. The company planned to construct a natural gas pipeline from the Canadian border, through New York and Connecticut, and across Long Island Sound. The company's environmental impact statement was insufficient to prove that Connecticut's need for natural gas outweighed preservation of the landscape and the environment.

In 1988, the Connecticut shoreline was closed periodically during the summer as medical waste washed up on the beaches. The Long Island Sound Study, started in 1985, monitored pollution in the Sound and made recommendations for improving water quality. Connecticut and New York collaborated on preserving the Sound and O'Neill nominated this body of water as a National Estuary.

The Office of Indian Affairs provided technical assistance and coordinated activities for the Connecticut Indian Affairs Council, an eight-member state agency without funding or staff. In 1987, the Governor appointed a Task Force on Indian Affairs. Its purpose was to review existing statutes, budgets, agencies and programs affecting Connecticut Indians. The Task Force was to study and make recommendations on all aspects of the state's responsibilities for Indian affairs. The Task Force's recommendations concerning state recognition of the indigenous tribes, namely the Schaghticoke, Paucatuck Eastern Pequot, Mashantucket Pequot, Mohegan and Golden Hill Paugussett, as self-governing entities possessing powers and duties over tribal members, and regulations relating to the preservation of Native American archaeological and sacred sites were passed by the legislature as An Act Implementing Recommendations of the Task Force on Indian Affairs (PA89-368).

Stanley J. Pac served as Commissioner of the Department from 1980-1986, when he was succeeded by Leslie Carothers, 1987-1990. Governor's staff liaisons were Chris Cooper, Marilynn Cruz-Aponte and Joseph Prevusnak.

Subseries 50. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission 1988

The Commission was established by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and began operating July 2, 1965. It enforces statutes prohibiting employment discrimination because of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, or disability.

The single letter in the Sub-series concerns a complaint of discrimination filed against Pfizer Corp.

Subseries 51. Ethics 1988-1990

The Connecticut State Ethics Commission, established in 1978, is an independent seven-member citizens' panel. It enforces and administers a Code of Ethics for Public Officials and State Employees and a Code of Ethics for Lobbyists. J. D. Eaton and Alan S. Plofsky served as the Executive Director and General Counsel.

Included in this Sub-series are letters to the Governor requesting clarification of the ethics rules, reports of possible violations, status information regarding claims, and reports from the Commission.

Subseries 52. Federal Communications Commission 1981-1989

The Federal Communications Commission, established in 1934, regulates interstate and international communications by radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable. Applications to the Commission comprise the records in this Sub-series.

Subseries 53. Federal Emergency Management Agency 1983-1985

The Federal Emergency Management Agency FEMA) consolidated national emergency response responsibilities into one federal agency. Created by executive order in 1979, the independent government agency's mission is to reduce the lost of life and property and protect the nation's infrastructure from natural and manmade hazards through mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery activities.

Within this Sub-series are informational bulletins about dam safety programs and flood education and insurance programs, contracts, and a draft of Connecticut's Hazard Mitigation Implementation Measures. Additional FEMA materials can be found in the Sub-series "Environmental Protection" and "Emergency Management".

Subseries 54. Federal [Matters] 1981-1990

Most of the items in this Sub-series relate to federal offices, agencies or national issues that could not be filed easily in other subject areas. Topics covered range from requesting commemorative stamps from the Postmaster General, to immigration and naturalization problems, federal recognition of Indian tribes, and the impact of reduced defense spending on Connecticut's economy. Some constituents wrote to the Governor about issues over which he had no control, such as Free Trade, Social Security, conflicts with Iran and Iraq, and embargoes against foreign countries. The letters were forwarded to a member of the Connecticut Congressional delegation or the writer was instructed to contact a local office of a federal agency.

Subseries 55. Freedom of Information Commission 1981-1989

This independent government oversight agency is charged with assuring the people of Connecticut access to the records and meetings of all public agencies. Established in 1975, the commission originally was within the Office of the Secretary of the State for administrative purposes only, but by 1987 was independent.

Freedom of information requests, questions about the statutes, complaints about the operation of the Commission, and advisory opinions constitute the bulk of this Sub-series.

Subseries 56. Governor's Pension 1981

A constituent is upset about how Governor's pension will be calculated, and the Governor responds.

Subseries 57. Grants 1981-1990

Prior to the fall of 1981, state governments applied to the federal Community Services Administration (CSA) for funds to run programs for the poor. The CSA was established under the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 and the categorical grant funds were administered through local Community Action Agencies. In 1981, however, the Reagan administration drastically cut social service program funding through the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act. Funds for social services were not only reduced, they were also awarded as "block grants" in the areas of social services, health services, preventive health services, emergency and hardship assistance, special education and education. The new grant rules were designed to eliminate duplication among federal granting agencies and give states greater discretion over how the funds were used. It also meant the states were responsible for administering grants.

The records in this Sub-series illustrate the change in federal grant management and distribution. The bulk of the records consist of applications to the Community Services Administration (1981) and to the Department of Health and Human Services for federal block grants (1983-1990). Grant applications covered such programs as Head Start, Maternal and Child Health, prevention of juvenile delinquency, and alcohol and drug abuse programs.

Other granting institutions represented in the collection are the Connecticut Humanities Council, State Aid to Municipalities, the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Subseries 58. Handicapped 1980-1991

The records in this sub-series primarily concern the activities of the Office of Protection and Advocacy for the Handicapped and Developmentally Disabled, the Council on Developmental Disabilities, and the Commission on the Deaf and Hearing Impaired. The Governor's staff classed all disability advocacy agencies under the heading "Handicapped." Barbara Gordon served as the primary liaison from the Governor's office.

The Office of Protection and Advocacy, established in 1977, deals with a wide variety of needs and discrimination problems faced by people with disabilities. The agency provides a toll-free information number, operates a TDD line for the deaf, participates in negotations before administrative bodies and litigation in courts, and monitors accessibility issues. The Office is located within the Department of Consumer Protection for administrative purposes. In 1988 the name of the agency was changed to the Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities. Eliot Dober served as Executive Director during O'Neill's administration.

The State Planning Council on Developmental Disabilities, within the Department of Mental Retardation, promotes the independence, education, employment and community integration of people who have severe, chronic disabilities manifested before the age of 22. Members of the Counicl include people with disabilities, their families, and representatives of public and non-profit agencies. Governor Meskill appointed the first Council on December 16, 1971. The Council has been a key player in integrating disabled children into the school system and in shifting public and agency opinions in favor of community housing,

Located within the Department of Human Resources for administrative purposes, the Commission on the Deaf and Hearing Impaired advocates, strengthens and implements state policies affecting deaf and hearing impaired individuals in their relationship to the public, industry, health care, and educational opportunity. The Commission provides interpreting services, counseling, referrals, job assistance, community and adult education, a telephone relay service, and advocacy. Barbara Brasel served as Executive Director during O'Neill's tenure. Additional correspondence can be found in the Sub-series "Human Resources."

Correspondence from constituents, from the disabled, and from the state agencies described above cover such issues as accessible public transportation, enforcement of handicapped parking regulations, education and training programs, accessible housing, and employment as they relate to disabled people. A particularly divisive issue the O'Neill administration faced was the concept of mainstreaming disabled children into the regular classroom. The deaf community strongly opposed the idea while the Developmenal Disability Council proposed and defended it. The conflict is well illustrated in reports and correspondence found in these files.

During the 1980s, advocacy groups implemented programs to move disabled people into group homes within the community. This program met with both approbation and resistance, which is reflected in the correspondence.

Subseries 59. Health [Services] 1981

The Department of Health Services (today the Department of Public Health) originally began as the Board of Health, established in 1878. Its responsibilities expanded and its name changed over time, but its mission remained essentially the same--to prevent and control heart disease, cancer, stroke and accidents, the leading causes of death in Connecticut. Mandated programs the department oversees include environmental control, maternal and child health, laboratory and statistical services, and the licensing of health care facilities.

The department is divided into numerous divisions and bureaus to administer the mandated services and it also has responsibility for vital records (birth, marriage and death), emergency medical services, professional and occupational licenses, long-term care of the elderly and disabled, planning, monitoring communicable diseases, and education. Not all of these activities are documented in the records found in this sub-series.

Correspondence from constituents, grant proposals, and reports and directives from state and federal agencies document, among other things, the growing use of group homes for the disabled, the increasing incidence of Lyme disease and AIDS and the state's education and prevention efforts, and the rising awareness of the dangers of asbestos in the 1980s. AIDS was first identified in 1981 and the HIV virus in 1984. The Department gathered Lyme disease statistics beginning in 1987. Other issues the department and the Governor addressed and that are documented in the collection were increasing costs of health care and health insurance, adolescent pregnancy, clean air and clean water, and most importantly, a drastic shortage of nurses, complicated by strikes at nursing homes.

Many of these issues are documented in the activities of separate offices and commissions within the department. The Commission on Hospitals and Health Care is a regulatory body charged with ensuring high quality health care at the lowest possible costs. To maintain lower costs, the Commission approves or denies additional functions or services proposed by a facility, authorizes capital expenditures above a set amount, and sets rates of home health care agencies. Until 1985 it also reviewed and authorized operating budgets for all non-governmental hospitals. Correspondence received and reports from the Commission were concerned with the proliferation of requests for MRI and other high technology equipment, the nursing shortage, and the expansion of Yale-New Haven Hospital. Commissioners during O'Neill's tenure were E. Cortright Phillips (1980-1981), F. Bernard Forand (1981-1982) and Gardner E. Wright (1982-1990).

In 1987 the Commission experimented with a system entitled DRS (Diagnosis Related Group) which classified patients according to their complaints and established a standard fee. The Governor and Commissioner received a flood of letters complaining about the billing system, which established rates significantly higher than the amount charged by the health care facility. The experiment ended in 1989.

The Commission on Long Term Care was established in 1980 to develop and implement a state policy on long-term care in relationship to nursing home residents, but in 1983 its responsibilities expanded to include the disabled. The commission was abolished July 1, 1990. The Commission issued a report on long term care, answered letters in favor of and against establishing a nursing pool, studied financing long term care, responded to people objecting to a plan to recertify Certified Nurses Assistants and monitored legislation affecting long term care and nursing home licenses.

Implementing the statewide 911 emergency phone number, certifying ambulance service providers, and developing a comprehensive emergency medical services state plan, including the Life Star helicopter service, are the responsibilities of the of Office of Emergency Medical Services. Letters in support of adding a second Life Star helicopter at Hartford Hospital and a complaint about a slow response time constitute the bulk of material related to this office.

One of the scandals that plagued the O'Neill administration involved the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. The Medical Examiner investigates violent, sudden, unexpected and suspicious deaths and those related to diseases that constitute a threat to public health. In a 1986 newspaper report, it was revealed that Galvin routinely brought her dogs into the autopsy room, compromising any reports she issued. Irate families of victims whose remains were under examination wrote scathing letters to the Governor demanding her resignation. Additional materials include an investigative report of Galvin's activities, an administrative report, and constituent letters concerning delays in receiving autopsy reports and the need for adequate funding.

The Statewide Health Coordinating Council, part of the Bureau of Health Planning and Resources allocation develops and implements the State Health Plan. Records from this agency consist of agendas and minutes of meetings and copies of the State Health Plan.

Correspondence between the Governor's office and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services concern rules changes, grant applications and awards, status reports on applications, and state compliance with federal regulations.

Liaisons from the Governor's staff were Jane Ciarleglio and Marilynn Cruz-Aponte.

Subseries 60. Hispanic Affairs 1987-1990

The Governor's staff filed correspondence with and announcements from the state's Hispanic organizations under this topic. In addition, Marilynn Cruz-Aponte, who served as the Governor's liaison with the Hispanic community, saved her invitations and correspondence in these files, also. Represented in this subseries are the Legislative Black and Puerto Rican Caucus, CAUSA, the Puerto Rican Association, and the Spanish Speaking Center.

Subseries 61. Historical 1981-1990

Historic preservation issues, data on historic houses and sites, reports and resolutions from the Connecticut Historical Commission, meeting minutes of the Connecticut Historical Society Board of Trustees and of the Old State House Association, and letters concerned about the preservation of the Fort Griswold historic site have all found their way into this subject area.

The Connecticut Historical Commission, administratively under the Department of Education, was established in 1955 by statute. It is charged with identifying, protecting and interpreting the state's historic, architectural and archaeological resources. In addition, the Commission helps municipalities establish local historic districts, and administers the National Register and the State Register of Historic Places. From 1980-1985, the Director also served as the Executive Director of the Connecticut Nautilus Committee, charged with finding a permanent location for the submarine U.S.S. Nautilus. John W. Shannahan was, and still is, the director.

A complementary organization, the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, was established in 1975 by S.A. 75-93. The non-profit organization protects and preserves the state's historic architecture, streetscapes, urban neighborhoods and country landscapes through education, technical assistance, and advocacy.

The Governor served as an honorary board member of the Connecticut Historical Society and the Old State House Association, both private Hartford institutions with missions to collect, preserve and interpret Connecticut's history. As a result, he received minutes of Board meetings, which are included in this Sub-series.

The Governor received a number of letters decrying the conditions at the Revolutionary War site of Fort Griswold in New London.

Subseries 62. Honorary 1982-1986

Invitations to the Governor to serve as honorary chairman, honorary patron, or honorary member of boards of trustees, organizations and committees comprise this Sub-series. Some of the organizations the Governor accepted include the Connecticut Committee for Soviet Jews, the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, the United Negro College Fund, and the National P.A.L. (Police Athletic League). The invitations are accompanied by the Governor's letter of acceptance.

Subseries 63. Housing 1981-1990

Constituent correspondence and reports concerning the activities of the Department of Housing are organized in this sub-series. The Department, established in 1979, encourages and promotes the availability of affordable housing for all citizens through programs providing financial assistance and works to improve housing and neighborhood quality. It accomplishes its mission through various divisions and programs. The major challenge faced by the Governor and the Department in the 1980s was the lack of affordable housing and the concomitant rise in homelessness, as evidenced in the letters they received.

Among the Department's programs were the Moderate Rental Housing Program and the Housing for the Elderly Persons Program, which provided low interest loans or grants-in-aid, respectively, to local housing authorities to build or rehabilitate affordable housing. Also for the elderly population, the Congregate Housing Program provided grants and loans to develop special congregate facilities with a planned program of supportive services (assisted living). Additional funds for constructing or rehabilitating units of affordable housing were available from the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority (CHFA), created in 1969. Records for CHFA are filed after the general correspondence.

Section 8 rental subsidies were administered through the Department, as were Federal Small Cities Block Grants. The Department also managed the Energy Conservation Loan Program and a pilot program of low interest security deposit loans, the result of the Governor's Task Force on the Homeless report.

The Judiciary Committee of the General Assembly studied the pros and cons of condominium conversion in order to develop and propose legislation. Co-chair of the committee was Richard Tulisano, and his 1979-1981 files on research into the question are included in this sub-series, following the regular correspondence from 1981.

The number of programs the Department provided or administered increased after 1986. In that year, the legislature created a statewide Connecticut Housing Authority, relieving the Commissioner of that duty. Funds were available to convert elderly housing projects into congregate housing as the elderly population continued to grow. Innovative Housing for the Homeless, started in 1987, provided money to develop emergency shelters and transitional housing for the homeless. The Governor declared 1987 as the Year of Housing and formed a Blue Ribbon Commission that published its findings in March 1988. That report led to the establishment of the Connecticut Housing Partnership to increase cooperation between the states and municipalities in solving the affordable housing problem. It also prompted the creation of the State Housing and Community Development Program and legislation permitting the Department to obtain surplus state property and determine whether it was suitable for permanent housing for low and middle income families or the homeless. Another effort to increase the number of affordable units was the Condominium Development Acquisition Pilot that sought to use vacant condominiums for affordable housing.

The Governor received letters complaining about landlords and/or tenants, about the conversion of apartments to higher-priced condominiums, and about the problems individuals or families encountered trying to keep a roof over their heads.

Also included in this sub-series are communiqués from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, also filed after the regular correspondence.

Two Commissioners served under Governor O'Neill, Joseph E. Canale (1980-1986) and John F. Papandrea (1987-1990).

Additional correspondence concerning housing and homeless issues can be found in the Sub-series "Human Resources."

Subseries 64. Human Resources 1981-1990

Records in this Sub-series represent the breadth of services provided by the Department of Human Resources. Established in 1979, the department provides direct services and grant programs to help residents achieve self-support and self-reliance. Areas of action include WIN (Work Incentive Program, changed to "Job Connections" in 1985-86), a program to help AFDC recipients find employment, the enforcement of child support orders, social services for refugees, oversight of day care providers, assistance in paying heating bills, protection for the elderly, and services for the blind, disabled and elderly. The Department became a lead agency in administering Community Development Block Grants when the federal government transferred responsibility to the states.

The constituent correspondence, department reports, and directives from the federal government filed in this subject area illustrate the increasing role of states in providing social services for its residents. Media attention focused on allegations of abuse by day care workers in 1984. The Child Day Care Council, an advisory board to the Office of Day Care, responded by re-establishing a committee on the issue and charging it to address abuse prevention through regulatory and statutory changes in rules governing employee screening. The Office of Day Care licensed and monitored the increasing number of day care facilities. It also provided financial assistance to nonprofit organizations and municipalities to encourage the development of more facilities to meet the growing demand of working mothers. The Office was abolished in 1985 and its responsibilities integrated in other divisions of the Department.

Initially a division within the Field Operations unit, Child Support became a Bureau in 1985. The following year it established a toll-free information and referral hotline for families seeking support assistance. The Bureau locates absent parents, establishes paternity, and determines and enforces child support obligations. Many women wrote to the Governor describing their precarious financial position and seeking his help in making an absent father pay child support.

The Governor appointed a Task Force on the Homeless in 1984 and a Task Force on Family Violence in 1985. The Commissioner of Human Resources served on both and information about their work and recommendations can be found in this Sub-group.

The responsibilities of the Department expanded dramatically in fiscal year 1986-87. The Department started a security deposit assistance program for people in emergency housing and established the family support magistrate system to exclusively handle child support cases. In 1987 the Department presented the first Employer of the Year Award in recognition of businesses that actively hired the blind. The Department became the lead advocacy agency for victims of Traumatic Brain Injury during that fiscal year. Families of victims appealed to the Governor for financial assistance or help finding an appropriate group home or institution to care for their loved ones.

Records related to one agency placed under the Department for administrative purposes are also found in this subject area. The Commission on the Deaf and Hearing Impaired advocates, strengthens and implements state policies affecting deaf and hearing impaired individuals in their relationship to the public, industry, health care, and educational opportunity. The Commission provides interpreting services, counseling, referrals, job assistance, community and adult education, a telephone relay service, and advocacy. The Commission's major accomplishments during the O'Neill administration were the long-term loan of TDD units so the hearing impaired or deaf could use a telephone, and the funding of a TDD message relay service through a contract with Converse Communications Center. When that service was threatened, the Governor received a flood of mail recounting the importance of TDD for the deaf.

Barbara Brasel served as Executive Director during O'Neill's tenure. Additional correspondence and reports about the Commission can be found in the Sub-series "Handicapped," filed with the general correspondence and also as a subject in folders that follow alphabetically.

The Commissioners of the Department of Human Resources from 1980-1990 were Ronald E. Manning (1980-1982), James G. Harris (1982-1986) and Elliot A. Ginsberg (1987-1990).

All incoming letters were bucked or forwarded to the Department for response.

Subseries 65. Human Rights and Opportunities 1981-1990

The Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities was established in 1943 as the Inter-racial Commission, the nation's first official state civil rights agency. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of Connecticut's anti-discrimination laws with regard to employment, housing, public accommodations, and credit transactions. It also reviews Affirmative Action plans of state agencies, boards and commissions, and monitors discriminatory practices by state contractors or subcontractors.

The majority of the Commission's work focused on investigating allegations of discrimination by employers and reviewing state agency Affirmative Action plans, and this is reflected in the correspondence, reports and minutes that constitute this Sub-series. Public hearings conducted in 1985 concerning fair housing and the Commission's oversight of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Commission starting in 1986, are also documented in these records. A flurry of complaints to the Governor about the slowness of the Commission's investigations led to the Governor's appointment of a task force in July 1988 to review the management and operations of the Commission. The task force report culminated in PA 89-332, which imposes a time frame on the investigation process and changes how commissioners and hearing officers are appointed.

Arthur L. Green was the director of the Commission throughout O'Neill's tenure. The majority of the letters addressed to the Governor were forwarded to the Commission for response. Howard Rifkin, Governor's Legal Counsel, handled most of the correspondence.

Subseries 66. Human Services Cabinet 1987-1990

The mission of the Governor's Human Services Cabinet was to enhance the ability of Connecticut residents to achieve productive work, maximum self-sufficiency and a quality of life that is meaningful to them and their families. The goals were to advise the Governor on emerging human services issues, ensure the development of coordinated human services policies, and ensure coordinated delivery of human service programs that are responsive to the needs of Connecticut residents. The Cabinet was active from 1987-1990.

The records in this sub-series include agenda, minutes, notices and background material for meetings of the Cabinet and meeting notices for Interagency Initiative Days.

Subseries 67. Income Maintenance 1981-1990

The Department of Income Maintenance administered programs that provided financial, medical, and food assistance. Programs included Medicaid (Title XIX), Aid for Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), food stamps, and energy assistance. The department's activities expanded during O'Neill's tenure, due in part to federal budget cuts and new federal regulations that "reformed" the nation's welfare system.

In 1982 the Department created the Food Stamp Fraud Unit to investigate and refer suspected fraud to the State Police. The state had been censured several times for the high error rate in this program. During the 1982-1983 fiscal year, the Department developed the first contract with a Health Maintenance Organization to provide medical care to AFDC recipients. To reduce Medicaid costs, the Department conducted a pilot program of evaluating recipients to determine if home or community-based care would be feasible, thereby keeping the elderly from entering nursing homes. That year also saw the creation of the Medicaid Cost Containment Task Force, which issued its report in early 1984. In December of that year, the Department developed training sessions to help AFDC recipients find and keep jobs.

Two of the most common complaints among the letters the Governor received related to low reimbursement rates for health care providers, and the slow and often incorrect billing that developed when an automated system took over that function. In response to the first complaints, in November 1985 the state government made the first of several increases in the Medicaid fee schedule for physicians and dentists.

Other missives asked the Governor for financial assistance, reported alleged welfare fraud, appealed for additional Medicaid or AFDC funds, suggested ways to improve the welfare system, or relayed changes in the federal welfare system that had direct impact on the state.

Commissioners of the Department from 1980-1990 were Edward W. Maher (1980-1982), Stephen B. Heintz (1983-1988) and Lorraine M. Aronson (1989-1990). The current Department of Social Services administers the programs once the purview of Income Maintenance.

Subseries 68. Income Tax 1982

Letters in favor of and opposed to a state income tax. Those in favor of the tax see it as a way to offset President Reagan's cuts to social programs. The Governor re-asserts his position against a state income tax. Also included is a letter proposing an alternative federal income tax rate. Additional correspondence about a state income tax and a "tax revolt" in which constituents sent the Governor tea bags, are found in the Sub-series "Taxes."

Subseries 69. Independence Day 1987

The Governor proclaims July 4, 1987 as Independence Day and asks mayors and first selectmen to ring their town bells for two minutes starting at 2:00 pm on July 4 in commemoration of the event.

Subseries 70. Information Bureau 1990

Governor Ella Grasso created the Governor's Information Bureau. As described in an undated brochure, "The purpose of having an Information Bureau is to eliminate the "Communications curtain" between private citizens and State government." It had four operators who connected callers to any one of 22 state agencies. The agencies would "provide answers to questions, resolve problems, handle complaints and receive comment on current issues involving State government."

The Sub-series consists of statistical reports of the number and types of calls received at the Bureau in several months of one year.

Subseries 71. Infractions Bureau 1988-1990

Violators of state laws were assessed a fine that could be paid by mail to the Infractions Bureau without going to court. The Bureau is part of the Judicial Branch of state government. The correspondence in these files contains complaints about receiving a ticket or citation and assertions of innocence. Additional letters can be found in the Sub-series "Motor Vehicles" and "Public Safety."

Subseries 72. Infrastructure 1984

In 1983 the Governor presented to the General Assembly a ten-year plan for infrastructure renewal focusing on the repair, repaving, or replacement of the state's roads, highways and bridges. The plan was the result, in part, of the appointment of a Task Force on Government Facilities charged with developing a coordinated program to deal with the state's infrastructure. The collapse of the Mianus River Bridge on Interstate 95 on June 28, 1983, catapulted the need to fund the plan to a top priority.

Additional information about infrastructure can be found in the Sub-series "Transportation."

Subseries 73. Insurance 1981-1990

Complaints about insurance rates or the practices of insurance companies are handled by the Insurance Department, established in 1865. The Commissioner supervises insurance companies and their agents licensed to do business in Connecticut, and administers laws regulating insurance companies and insurance-related entities.

The bulk of letters in this Sub-series consist of complaints about the high and continually rising rates of health and automobile insurance and complaints about individual companies. The Governor's staff also filed in this subject area letters concerning benefits for retired state employees.

Joseph C. Mike (1980-1982), Peter W. Gillies (1983-1988), and Peter F. Kelly (1989-1990) served as Commissioner of the Department.

Subseries 74. Intergovernmental Programs [Affairs] 1982-1984

The correspondence in this Sub-series consists of correspondence with the President's Office of Intergovernmental Affairs and a state response to proposed federal rule changes.

Subseries 75. Interns 1981, 1989

Evaluations of or expressions of interest in serving as interns in the Governor's office or with a state agency.

Subseries 76. Interstate Commerce Commission 1981-1982

The Interstate Commerce Commission was an independent government agency charged with regulating fees and services of specified carriers (railroads, trucks, buses, oil pipelines, etc.) engaged in transportation between states. The Commission was terminated in 1995.

The Governor corresponded with the Commission when a school group had trouble with the Cross Sound Ferry running between Connecticut and Long Island, and when he supported the application of a trucking company seeking authority to engage in interstate commerce.

Subseries 77. Jefferson Award 1981-1982

"The Jefferson Awards and the American Institute for Public Service were founded in 1973, to honor to highest ideals and achievements in the field of public service in the United States. Through its annual Jefferson Awards, the Institute recognizes the dedication, sacrifice, and accomplishments of individuals serving the American people and strives to develop new leadership."

The materials in these files represent the Governor's activities as a member of the Board of Nominations.

Subseries 78. Judicial 1981-1990

The Judicial system is one of the three branches of government responsible for interpreting and upholding the laws of the state. The Supreme and Appellate Courts review Superior Court decisions. The Superior Court hears all legal controversies except those related to probate. There are four divisions within the Superior Court--civil, criminal, family and housing. The Probate Court administers estates of the deceased, oversees adoptions, appoints guardians and can commit someone who is mentally ill. The Chief Court Administrator supervises the daily operations of the courts.

The Governor's staff filed complaints about attorneys, judges and the courts, assertions of innocence, concerns about jail overcrowding, comments about jury duty, inmate complaints, and letters in opposition to the early release of criminals in this subject area. Directives from the U.S. Department of Justice and information about the Statewide Grievance Committee were also filed here.

Additional correspondence concerning the topics above can be found in "Corrections," "Infractions Bureau," and "Legal."

Subseries 79. Kleinman, Harry H. 1981

Suggestions for the Democratic Party platform, sent to Governor O'Neill from a Hartford attorney, along with copies of newspaper articles to support his ideas.

Subseries 80. Labor 1981-1990

The Department of Labor protects and promotes the interests of Connecticut's workers. Services include unemployment compensation, assistance with job searches, job training, mediation of labor disputes, wage regulation, and workers' compensation. The materials in this Sub-series illustrate the need for and use of these services, and how those changed over time in response to the economy.

Correspondence the Governor received covered a wide range of topics. Among them were protests of pending layoffs, questions about training programs, concerns about the minimum wage rate and prevailing wage laws, and concerns about union negotiations and labor strikes. O'Neill heard from constituents angered that former Air Traffic Controllers who did not return to work after the strike in 1981 were eligible for unemployment benefits. The Governor also monitored strikes at Electric Boat (1984, 1988), Colt Industries (1986) and Southern New England Telephone (1986).

Filed alphabetically by topic after the general correspondence are files representing divisions, councils, and programs administered by the Department. The Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA), replaced in 1983 by the Job Training Partnership Act, were federally funded programs designed to provide classroom and on-the-job training to economically disadvantaged and displaced residents so they could secure employment. The Governor received copies of grant applications and notices of awards, heard from constituents who approved of the programs and those who did not, received recommendations from and minutes of the Job Training Coordinating Council, and learned about implementing the Economic Dislocation and Worker Adjustment Assistance Act.

The Employment Security Division determined the eligibility for and facilitated payment of unemployment claims which the state and federal governments paid jointly. Connecticut unemployment rates increased dramatically in the early 1980s due to the national economic downturn but the trend reversed after 1985. Governor O'Neill received letters from the unemployed seeking help finding a job or obtaining benefits, from individuals who criticized the program or sought to appeal a denial of benefits, and from employers complaining about the high tax rate or appealing decisions that required them to pay benefits. A tightening of eligibility requirements in 1985 resulted in a flurry of protest letters.

In 1972, the state borrowed funds from the Federal Unemployment Account. O'Neill managed to cut that debt in 1985 and repaid it in its entirety in July 1986, saving employers thousands in federal penalty payments. The Governor received information about the account and also letters from employers complaining about the penalties.

Directives and correspondence from the U.S. Department of Labor primarily announce grant deadlines or new funding opportunities. Additional letters explain changes in or the introduction of new federal legislation, including the Economic Dislocation and Worker Adjustment Assistance Act. The Governor also received reports on such issues as the new federal initiative "Workforce 2000," and a study on childcare and the workforce.

The Connecticut Workers' Compensation Act provided wage replacement and other benefits, and medical treatment, for those injured, disabled or killed while performing their jobs. The Board of Compensation Commissioners handled claims. Many constituents complained to the Governor that the system was inadequate: checks were late, claims were denied, hearings were delayed, and rehabilitation programs were insufficient. In addition, employers complained about the high tax rate.

P. Joseph Perraro (1980-1987) and Betty Tianti (1988-1990) served as Commissioners. Governor's office liaisons included Yasha Escalera, Marilynn Cruz-Aponte, and Linda Poltorak.

Subseries 81. L'Ambiance [Plaza Building Collapse] 1987

On April 23, 1987, concrete slabs being hoisted into place during construction of a 13-story apartment building in Bridgeport slipped from their supports causing the building to collapse. Twenty-eight men were killed and 11 injured. The Governor called for an immediate investigation by the State Police. He also appointed the Governor's Building Construction Advisory Committee, charged with reviewing local, state, and federal investigative reports and to make recommendations on how to prevent future construction failures. The reports from these two entities constitute this Sub-series.

Subseries 82. Legal 1981-1990

The Governor's staff filed anything of a legal nature in this subject area, even letters or documents more appropriately relating to corrections, judicial matters, or motor vehicle violations. Constituents asked questions about Connecticut laws and jurisprudence or requested the Governor's intervention in their case. Inmates asked for reduced sentences, early release, or swore they were innocent. Crime victims wondered what their rights were. Constituents complained about local police, lawyers, their treatment in court, the legal system in general, and accelerated rehabilitation. The Governor also received information relating to the nomination of Judge Robert Bork to the Supreme Court. Staff kept files on more prominent cases including the accessory to murder trial of Karen Aparo, the Jean D'Angelo case, and the James Avis case.

The standard response to most of the letters requesting the Governor's intervention was that statutorily he did not have authority to intervene in judicial cases.

Subseries 83. Legislation 1981-1990

The Governor received letters from his constituents and from members of the General Assembly expressing their opinions in favor of or against proposed legislation. Some constituents urged the Governor to veto legislation already passed but not yet signed. The legislation that created the most mail concerned state and federal budgets, taxes, gun control, English as Connecticut's official language, Medicare, homosexual rights and hate crimes, parental leave, and mail order prescriptions. O'Neill usually thanked the person for expressing his or her views and said he would take the opinion under advisement as he considered legislation.

O'Neill did his own share of lobbying by writing to the state's Congressional delegation to express his opinions on the federal budget and legislation that could negatively impact Connecticut. Some of these letters, and a copy of O'Neill's 1981 testimony before the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources concerning care of the retarded, are also found in this Sub-series. Additional correspondence about legislation can be found in the appropriate Sub-series, depending on the topic.

Subseries 84. Legislative Management 1987-1990

"The Office of Legislative Management provides administrative and operational support for the Connecticut General Assembly. The office, while implementing the policies of the Joint Committee on Legislative Management provides administrative and financial services, administers compensation and human resources services, and oversees the management and maintenance of all buildings and grounds under the supervision and control of the Legislature. The Office of Legislative Management ensures the daily functioning of the Legislature for the benefit of the legislators, their staff, and the general public.

Documents in this Sub-series include letters from school children who wanted to visit the Capitol, the Governor's explanation for vetoing a bill, and complaints and comments about the costs of building and remodeling the Legislative Office Building. The Governor "bucked" most of the correspondence to David Ogle, Executive Director of the Office.

An annual report of the Office of Legislative Management is also included among these records.

Subseries 85. Library 1981-1990

The Connecticut State Library was established in 1854 to serve as the primary library for the state. It provides services to the General Assembly, state executive departments, the Judicial Department, and individuals and libraries throughout Connecticut. Services to other libraries include construction grants and loans of books, tapes, videos, etc., from one of the two library service centers. The Division of Public Records and Archives and the Museum of Connecticut History are charged with preserving the state's printed and three-dimensional heritage.

The records related to the State Library include minutes of board meetings, reports, interlibrary loan policies, and the museum's Collection Management Policy. The 1987 investigation of trading the museum's firearms is partially documented in these records, as are the library's first steps in automating its catalog. Constituent letters primarily object to proposed cuts in state funding.

Clarence Walters served as State Librarian from 1980-1986, followed by Richard G. Akeroyd, Jr. from 1987 until the end of the Governor's term. The archives of the State Library are found in RG 012.

Subseries 86. Liquor Control 1981-1990

The Department of Liquor Control, established in 1933, is under the Department of Consumer Protection administratively. The three-member commission interprets and enforces provisions of the Liquor Control Act, which regulates the import, manufacture and sale of liquor in the state. The records of the Commission found in the Governor's papers primarily consist of charges of violations, applications for permits to sell alcohol, and biweekly reports from Chairman John F. Healy, who served from 1980-1989.

Most of the letters were "bucked" to the Commissioner for response.

Subseries 87. Local 1981-1990

Connecticut residents looked to the Governor as their last resort when they could not get issues solved themselves. As a result, many asked for help with matters that could only be addressed on the local level. Letters in which the Governor suggested the writer contact an official in his or her town were filed by his staff in the subject area "Local."

Subseries 88. Management Advisory Council 1981

State Managers formed the Management Advisory Council in June, 1980, to develop and maintain communication between the administration and state managers. By December of that year, the Council had negotiated a separate and distinct compensation plan, including a commitment to establish a $30,000 managerial development fund. O'Neill signed an Executive Order to officially establish the Council in 1983.

One set of minutes exists for this Sub-series.

Subseries 89. Mental Health 1981-1990

Established in 1953, the Department of Mental Health is charged with the care and treatment of mentally ill adults. One goal of the Department was to develop community services for those who did not need to be in institutions. The move to community-based services for the mentally ill is documented in the reports and correspondence in this Sub-series, as is the management of the nine facilities the Department operated. These facilities included three large hospitals--Connecticut Valley Hospital, Norwich Hospital, and Fairfield Hills Hospital in Newtown--and three community mental health centers, one each in New Haven, Hartford and Bridgeport. Cedarcrest Regional Hospital, Whiting Forensic Institute, and the F. S. DuBois Center in Stamford constitute the final three facilities.

Connecticut was divided into five mental health planning regions to provide a context for administration of mental health programs and to review and monitor grants. The Department administered federal block grants to support and expand services provided by community mental health centers. It also coordinated the development of five new crisis intervention centers, established a unit of psychosocial rehabilitation services and expanded the number of group homes and supervised apartments.

In 1982 O'Neill appointed a Blue Ribbon Task Force on Mental Health policy, charged with reviewing and analyzing the total mental health system and making recommendations for reducing the fragmentation of services and increasing efficiency in service delivery. The interim report was used by Department staff to develop policies designed to improve services at community mental health centers and at hospitals. The legislature passed laws that made the shift to community-based treatment more feasible. P.A.83-157 extended mandatory insurance coverage to include outpatient services at community mental health centers. The legislature also approved the transfer of substance abuse services from the Department to the Connecticut Alcohol and Drug Addiction Commission.

The Governor and the Department faced their most publicized crisis following the July 28, 1989 stabbing death of 9-year-old Jessica Short. David Peterson, a patient at Connecticut Valley Hospital, slipped away from the facility and went to Main Street in Middletown where he grabbed Jessica and stabbed her with a hunting knife. Connecticut citizens were outraged that a violent patient could "escape" from a mental hospital so easily and blamed the Governor in their letters. Many suggested never allowing patients to go unsupervised or building an impregnable fence around Connecticut Valley Hospital. An immediate lock down and suspension of privileges at all state mental health facilities caused anger among the patients and their advocates. The Department changed its procedures following a review of all security policies while still taking patient rights into account.

Eric E. Plaut was Commissioner when O'Neill took office. He was replaced by Audrey M. Worrell in 1982. When she resigned in 1986, a nationwide search resulted in the appointment of Michael F. Hogan on May 30, 1987. Betty Hudson and Barbara Gordon served as liaisons from the Governor's office.

Subseries 90. Mental Retardation 1981-1990

The Department of Mental Retardation has provided services for the mentally retarded since 1975. The Department's mission is "to join with others to create the conditions under which all people with mental retardation experience presence and participation in Connecticut town life, opportunities to develop and exercise competence, opportunities to make choices in the pursuit of a personal future, good relationships with family members and friends, and respect and dignity." To achieve that mission, the Department provides residential options, day programs, employment supports, respite services, recreational programs, and assistive technology.

Two legal suits colored the programs and policies O'Neill and the Department instituted. The most far-reaching was a case filed in 1978 by the Connecticut Association of Retarded Citizens (CARC) against the Department and its Commissioner, Gareth D. Thorne. It was in the 1970s that community-based programs for the mentally retarded began. In light of that change, CARC claimed that the administration and staff at Mansfield Training School violated their clients' 1st, 4th, 5th, 9th and 11th amendment rights and sections of the federal Social Security, Developmental Disabilities and Rehabilitation Acts. After five years of litigation, the Department, the State, and the members of CARC negotiated an agreement codified in a Consent Decree.

Provisions of the Consent Decree directed the Department to reduce the client population at Mansfield Training School and skilled nursing facilities by making available "suitable facilities and services that will assure an opportunity for every class member to live in a community residential setting." Each class member was to be evaluated by an interdisciplinary team to determine his or her needs and suitability for community placement. Any decision on placement had to be made with the knowledge, input and agreement of the client and his or her parents, guardian, or advocate. In addition, Mansfield had to improve its facilities and its care of clients who remained residents of the school. The class was composed of all persons who, as of December 6, 1978 or subsequent thereto, had been or could become residents of Mansfield, clients under the custody of Mansfield but transferred to a long-term care facility, and those receiving services and were in jeopardy of being transferred to Mansfield.

This consent decree, and another reached in 1986 concerning Southbury Training School, made community placement a top priority in the Department's program. The ruling on these cases also caused frustration and fear among parents who had cared for their disabled children at home, were aging or were now unable to provide care, and could not find a community placement. In addition, the consent decree contributed to the closing of Mansfield.

The second case, Youngberg v Romeo (U.S. Supreme Court docket 80-1429), found Connecticut filing an amicus brief in support of the petitioners. Youngberg, the superintendent of a state school and hospital, questioned whether a client involuntarily committed to a Pennsylvania institution for retarded persons, has a constitutional right under the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to decent care, reasonable protection from harm, freedom from prolonged restraint, and training or habilitation. Connecticut residents were incensed that the state would question patient rights and bombarded the Governor with their letters of protest. O'Neill defended the brief, asserting that the strategy was to force the federal government to affirm those rights, thus providing guidance and consistency to the states.

In addition to letters concerning the above mentioned cases, the Governor also received correspondence regarding the gap in state care between school-aged children and those who turn 21, the need for additional services, not mixing the mentally ill with the mentally retarded, changing the policy on "Do not resuscitate orders," and the shortage of staff at private service agencies because of the discrepancy between the wages paid at state-run facilities and those run privately.

Gareth D. Thorne served as Commissioner from 1880-1984, followed by Brian R. Lensink, 1985-1989, and Toni Richardson, 1990. Lee Hawkins, Betty Hudson and Barbara Gordon served as Governor's staff liaisons.

Subseries 91. Military 1978-1990

The Governor's staff incorporated correspondence concerning several organizations within the heading of Military. The Military Department is charged with protecting citizens and their property in time of war, invasion, rebellion, riot or disaster. The four State Militia Units--1st and 2nd Foot Guard and 1st and 2nd Horse Guard--are direct descendants of the colonial militia. Also descended from the militia is the National Guard, a dual state-Federal force that responds as citizen-soldiers to both international and local crises. The leader of the Military Department is the Adjutant General who is appointed by the Governor. Records pertaining to the Military Department consist primarily of copies of special orders for promotions, discharges, awards, and assignments. Several letters ask the Governor's permission for the either the Horse or Foot Guard to participate in various local celebrations. The Governor also sent letters of congratulations to new enlistees in both the federal services and the National Guard. During O'Neill's tenure, the Adjutant Generals were John F. Freund (1980-1981), John F. Gore (1982-1984) and John T. Gereski (1985-1990).

The Soldiers', Sailors' and Marines' Fund was established by the General Assembly in 1919 to pay bonuses to returning veterans. Prior to World War II, the decision was made to use the interest from the state appropriated funds to provide benefits for needy veterans and their families. This fund is administered by the American Legion. The Governor's office received several requests for benefits from the fund.

Correspondence concerning two historic sites are also included in this Sub-series. The U.S.S. Nautilus is berthed at the Submarine Force Museum in Groton. Following the decommissioning of the vessel on March 3, 1980, Governors Grasso and O'Neill lobbied for the submarine's return to Connecticut. O'Neill also oversaw planning for the memorial and fundraising. The Nautilus was towed into Groton on July 6, 1985 and opened to the public on April 11, 1986. Grasso's and O'Neill's correspondence concerning their efforts to obtain the Nautilus are filed after the regular correspondence.

Fort Griswold, also in Groton, is Connecticut's only Revolutionary War battle site. On September 6, 1781, British forces commanded by Benedict Arnold captured the fort and massacred 88 of the 165 defenders there. The local chapter of the Veterans of Foreign Wars repeatedly asked the Governor to repair and maintain the fort.

Subseries 92. Miscellaneous 1981-1990

When the Governor's staff could not determine the subject of a letter, it and any reply the office sent were filed in Miscellaneous. The topics vary widely and could be duplicated in other Sub-series. Some constituents urged the protection of leatherback turtles. Students and others requested information about the state or wanted an autographed photo of the Governor. Constituents either complained about or offered solutions for the state's problems as they saw them. During the 1986 presidential campaign, people expressed their feelings about candidates George Bush and Michael Dukakis. On an international note, the Governor sent greetings to Paraiba, Brazil, Connecticut's sister state, and he saved a book about Jerusalem given to him by the Israeli consul.

Subseries 93. Motor Vehicles 1980-1990

The Department of Motor Vehicles protects life and property by administering motor vehicle laws, regulates, disciplines and educates motor vehicle operators, and protects consumers by regulating and monitoring automobile dealers and repairers. The Department was organized into five divisions but underwent a reorganization in 1988. The correspondence the Governor received can be related to four of the five divisions and most of them were complaints which were "bucked" to the Commissioner for response.

The Auto Emissions Division, under P.A. 80-458, implemented an emissions inspection program on December 31, 1982. The Governor received letters from constituents both praising and criticizing the process or the cost. Others wanted to know why trucks were exempt from testing and called for a more equitable system.

The Dealers and Repairers Division licensed gas stations, garages, dealers, repairers and junk yards. Constituents often complained to the Governor about overcharging, rudeness, and the poor service experienced at car dealerships and repair shops. Some of these complaints were answered with the passage of a co-called Lemon Law that required the replacement of a vehicle or a refund of the purchase price if an automobile could not be repaired after a reasonable number of attempts.

Driver's licenses were issued and suspended by the Driver Licensing Division. Numerous people wrote to the Governor protesting their license suspensions and relating their hard luck stories. The Governor also received complaints about uninsured or unlicensed drivers and letters contesting traffic tickets. Appeals for stricter drunk driving laws, and support for administrative per se (the administrative suspension of a license pending a hearing) also crossed the Governor's desk.

In 1980, the Registry/Title Division instituted two-year registration renewals, which led some citizens to object to high motor vehicle registration fees. Adults and children submitted new license plate designs to the Governor. He also received numerous complaints about the long waits and rude staff at Department of Motor Vehicle offices, and letters opposed to closing local offices.

A report of the 1988 Department reorganization and missives from the National Transportation Safety Board are included among these records.

There were only two Commissioners during O'Neill's tenure--Benjamin A. Muzio (1980-1986) and Lawrence F. DelPonte (1987-1990). Lee Hawkins was staff liaison from the Governor's office.

Subseries 94. National Governors' Association 1980-1990

The nation's Governors first met as a group in 1908 to discuss interstate water problems. Since then, a formal association developed that is considered one of the best public policy organizations in the Capitol. The National Governors' Association (NGA) provides Governors and their senior staff with services including representing stats on Capitol Hill, developing policy reports on state programs, and hosting networking seminars. Governors use the NGA as a bipartisan forum to help shape and implement national policy.

Governor O'Neill regularly attended NGA annual meetings. He served several terms as Vice Chairman of the Committee on Transportation, Commerce and Communications. The materials O'Neill received from the Association included policy statements, information on national issues and legislation directly affecting the states, surveys, newsletters, and reports on establishing special task forces, subcommittees and units within the NGA.

Some of the national issues addressed during O'Neill's tenure included the Clean Air Act, disposal of high and low level radioactive waste, infrastructure funding, the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act to balance the budget, Medicaid, the need for funding developments in science and technology, long term care, and industrial development.

Subseries 95. New England Governors' Conference 1983-1990

The New England Governors' Conference was formally established in 1937 by the six state governors to promote New England's economic development. In 1981, it was incorporated as a non-partisan, non-profit organization. The Board of Directors consists of the six governors, with a chairman chosen annually. Governor O'Neill served as chairman in 1983.

The Conference coordinates regional policy programs in the area of economic development, transportation, the environment, energy and health. It also serves as the New England Secretariat for the Conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers. This intergovernmental organization seeks to expand economic ties, foster energy exchanges, advocate for environmental issues and coordinate policies in the areas of transportation, forest management, tourism, agriculture and fisheries.

The correspondence and reports in this Sub-series reflect the issues these two organizations addressed in the 1980s.

Subseries 96. Office of Emergency Management 1989-1990

The Office of Emergency Management was the continuation of the Office of Civil Preparedness; the name was changed in October 1988. Part of the Department of Public Safety, the Office was responsible for minimizing or controlling the effects of major natural or man-made disasters. It also had responsibility for nuclear safety preparedness. Frank Mancuso directed the Office.

The folders in which these reports, an exercise announcement and minutes were found was originally labeled "Federal Emergency Management Agency," but no federal documents were found. The label was changed to more adequately reflect the materials in the folders, and in the process, the records were not inter-filed with "Emergency Management."

Subseries 97. Office of Policy and Management 1981-1990

The Office of Policy and Management was established in 1977 as part of the reorganization of the executive branch of state government. Its mission is to assist the Governor in providing for effective and responsive management through identification, analysis, development and resolution of state government policies. The agency is further divided into six or seven divisions to handle such issues as the state budget, the state's energy needs, maintaining relationships with municipalities, labor negotiations, and improving the criminal justice system.

Governor O'Neill received correspondence and reports on numerous state policies and plans. Constituents opposed the construction of new or expanded jails. Health care facilities wrote about the need for long term care of the disabled and elderly, and complained about the lack of staff. Many elderly and the poor requested energy assistance during the winter. Among these files are letters, directives and reports from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the Department of Energy. Most of these letters were "bucked" to the Department for response. Anthony V. Milano served as Secretary throughout O'Neill's administration.

Two Divisions received their own subheadings in the Governor's files. The Energy Division dealt with maintaining the state's energy supply, safely transporting nuclear material, advocating energy conservation, monitoring the Iroquois Pipeline, and purchasing energy from Hydro-Quebec. Directives from federal agencies primarily concern the distribution of funds collected in a settlement agreement with oil companies that inflated their prices while subject to federal price controls under the Emergency Petroleum Allocation Act. Correspondence, directives, notices and reports from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission are included. Most of the materials were forwarded or "bucked" to the Division for response. Brad Chase served as Under Secretary of the Energy Division and Mary Hart and Bob Grant were Governor's Office liaisons.

William H. Carbone headed the Justice Planning Division when it was created in 1983. The bulk of the correspondence related to this Division is filed under Jail Overcrowding and consists of letters opposing expansion of existing or construction of new facilities.

Subseries 98. Personnel 1981-1991

The Personnel Division is located within the Department of Administrative Services. It is responsible for the recruitment, testing, selection, appointment, compensation, discipline and separation of employees. The Division conducts contract negotiations with state employee unions, holds grievance hearings, and provides training and staff development. In 1983, the Division assumed responsibility for administering Workers Compensation.

The bulk of the letters the Governor received were requests for state employment and had been found under other subjects and reassembled here. Some constituents wanted to learn from the Governor why they were not hired, while some demanded past due overtime pay or resolution of a grievance. Other correspondence related to personnel can be found in the Sub-series Acknowledgements, Administrative Services, Resumes and Retirements.

Unlike the other Sub-series, this one is organized alphabetically by the name of the job seeker within each year. The Governor's staff "bucked" most of the letters to the Division for response.

Subseries 99. Petitions, Small 1990

Most petitions received at the Governor's office were filed under the subject of the petition. However, O'Neill's staff filed this group of "small" petitions separately. They include protests against a fee proposed for registering real estate brokers and against killing swans to regulate their population.

Subseries 100. Physical Fitness, Governors Committee on 1986-1988

The Governor's Committee on Physical Fitness was created by Executive Order of Governor Abraham Ribicoff in 1959. The mission of the Committee is "to improve the health and well-being of the people of Connecticut by increasing the number of residents who participate in a regular program of healthy physical activity" and to promote sound personal health habits.

John Gawlak served as Chairman under O'Neill and he was instrumental in reviving the state's participation in the State Games program. Records in this file include brochures advertising the Nutmeg Games and describing the Committee, minutes of meetings, requests from Gawlak for the Governor's participation or for new board members, and a position paper from the Committee concerning the State Games.

Subseries 101. Political 1981, 1990

A letter critical of the Governor's involvement with Democrats Working Together, supplemented by newspaper clippings, constitute this Sub-series.

Subseries 102. Psychiatric Security Review Board 1988

The mission of the Psychiatric Security Review Board is "to protect the safety of Connecticut citizens and certain individuals by ordering appropriate treatment, confinement, or conditional release of persons accused of crimes but found not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect." The Superior Court commits these individuals to the oversight of the Board and the Board conducts periodic administrative hearings to review the status of each person. The general findings and orders that the PSRB issues are: "confinement in a maximum security facility, confinement in a hospital for the mentally ill or placement with the Commissioner of Mental Retardation, approval of temporary leave, approval of conditional release with specific conditions, modification or termination of conditional release, recommendations for discharge or continued confinement to the court."

The correspondence in this Sub-series concerns the findings of a Review Board hearing, and complaints from a victim's family about the hearing process and the finding for temporary release.

Subseries 103. Public Safety 1981-1990

The Department of Public Safety was established in 1979 and consists of several divisions including State Police, the Forensic Science Laboratory, and the State Fire Marshall. The State Police protect life and property of Connecticut citizens, enforce criminal and motor vehicle laws, respond to emergencies and disaster, and provide general police services to towns without organized police departments. In 1981 the State Police Division decentralized, moving some headquarters functions to one of three, largely autonomous field districts: Eastern, Central, and Western. Each district was then divided into four troop jurisdictions.

The State Fire Marshall is responsible for fire investigations, safety inspections of buildings, issuing weapons permits, and issuing permits for such events as bingo games and firework displays.

Most of the correspondence in this Sub-series concern speeding tickets, reports of speeding vehicles and the need to enforce limits, complaints of police using unmarked vehicles to catch speeders, and appeals for and against increasing the speed limit on rural highways to 65 mph. A number of constituents reported being treated rudely by police officers. Drivers of commercial vehicles protested a "crack-down" on violators. The Governor also received a flood of letters both in favor of and against the mandatory seatbelt law in 1986-1987.

Correspondence from all of 1989 and the bulk of 1990 is missing. A patron requested the cartons containing these records and the materials were subsequently misplaced. These missing materials document, in part, the State Police taping controversy. The State Police allegedly taped phone conversations between criminal suspects and their lawyers. The revelation led to the forced retirement of Lester J. Forst in November 1989, and some of his top aides were demoted. The scandal sparked a congressional hearing and a federal grand jury investigation. Some records related to this event can be found in the records of the Governor's legal counsel, Series II.

Commissioners of Public Safety during O'Neill's term were Donald J. Long (1980-1981), Lester J. Forst (1981-1989) and Bernard R. Sullivan (1990). Lee Hawkins served as liaison from the Governor's office.

Subseries 104. Public Utility Control 1981-1990

The Department of Public Utility Control was established July 1, 1980, from the Public Utilities Control Authority. The Department's mission is to ensure that safe, reliable, modern and fairly-priced utility services are available in Connecticut. To achieve that mission, the Department regulates the service, rates, safety, and consolidation or mergers of public service companies and it regulates motor carriers for hire (not livery carriers). The utilities regulated include electric, gas, water, sewer, telephone, telegraph, and cable television.

Availability of electric power was among the Department's most important issues during the O'Neill administration. In 1981, constituents opposed the decision to abolish the electric heat discount and the reduced rate for high volume users, called flattening. Between 1984 and 1985, O'Neill received numerous letters from residents complaining about high electric rates. In response, he ordered an investigation into residential electric rates in 1985. The General Assembly passed legislation in 1986 making it possible for companies to establish cogeneration and small power production facilities. Cogeneration plants generated letters opposing the selected location.

Controversy surrounded the construction and operation of nuclear power plants in Connecticut and on Long Island. Northeast Utilities, which operated the plants in this state, provided the Governor's Office with incident reports from its nuclear power plants and applications and notices about rate schedule increases.

Commissioners who served the Department were Thomas H. Fitzpatrick (1981-1983), John T. Downey (1984-1987) and Peter G. Boucher (1988-1990).

Records and correspondence concerning the activities of the Connecticut Siting Council are also found in this Sub-series. The Council, which started in 1971 as the Power Facility Evaluation Council, reviews and approves sites for energy and telecommunications facilities and for hazardous waste disposal sites. The name change occurred in 1981 when responsibility for hazardous waste sites was transferred to the Council. The Chairman of the Council, Gloria Dibble Pond, also served on the Permanent Council for Hazardous Waste.

Subseries 105. Public Works 1981-1989

The Bureau of Public Works, part of the Department of Administrative Services, became an independent department July 1, 1987. Its responsibilities have always been the maintenance and operation of the state-owned and leased facilities, the supervision of design and construction of all capital projects above a certain dollar amount except for transportation and legislative projects, assisting state agencies with energy conservation, and leasing office space for executive offices. In 1984 the Bureau assumed responsibility for asbestos removal.

The records in this Sub-series primarily consist of reports to or from the Bureau or Department, contracts, questions about the bidding and contract process, and inquiries from companies that want to be included on the bid list.

Norman E. Cutts served as Deputy Commissioner until 1982 when Donald Cassin took over the position. His title changed to Commissioner when the Bureau became a Department.

Subseries 106. Questionnaires 1982-1983

The Governor's office received questionnaires from researchers and government agencies throughout his tenure, and these can be found under the appropriate subject heading. In this instance, however, the staff created a separate file for questionnaires that solicited the Governor's opinions on special legislative sessions, school financing, and state-tribal relations. Additional questionnaires which the Governor's staff answered can be found in the Series Campaign Materials.

Subseries 107. Racism 1981-1983

In 1981, Governor O'Neill directed Lieutenant Governor Joseph Fauliso to convene a Task Force on Racial Harmony in response to incidents of racial, religious and inter-group tensions. Its goals were to develop an educational film focusing on the problems of racism; to develop community programs; and to review and recommend state and local legislative actions.

The incidents prompting the task force primarily revolved around the KKK. That organization held two rallies in 1981, one in support of a white police officer who shot two black shoplifters, and one to protest the state's failure to prosecute Klan opponents who threw rocks and bottles at them.

The correspondence in this Sub-series consists of explanations of the activities of the Task Force on Racial Harmony, volunteers expressing a wish to serve on the Task Force, and objections to racist activities, including the suspicious synagogue fires in West Hartford in 1983.

Subseries 108. Reagan 1981, 1984

Correspondence related to events occurring in President Reagan's administration, including his inauguration and the announcement of his Crime Control Package comprise this Sub-series.

Subseries 109. Recommendations 1981-1989

This Sub-series consists of letters recommending individuals for state office or for promotion, requests for the Governor's recommendation for college admission, and letters from staff recommending people applying for specific state jobs. These files are arranged alphabetically by the name of the person being recommended.

Subseries 110. Regional Offices 1981-1982

The Governor had two regional offices, one in Stamford, called the Southern Office, and the other in Norwich, called the Eastern Office, to serve the state's citizens more effectively. Constituents were able to contact staff at the regional offices to relay their concerns to the Governor. The records in this Sub-series consist of memoranda and letters forwarded to the Governor's office in behalf of constituents.

Subseries 111. Renaming 1981

Constituents suggest naming several facilities for the late Governor Grasso in this Sub-series.

Subseries 112. Resignations 1982

Letters inform the Governor of an individual's resignation from a committee, commission, task force or government office. The Governor acknowledges and accepts each resignation with thanks and regret.

Subseries 113. Resumes 1981-1982

Resumes and letters of introduction from individuals seeking appointment or employment with the state, or help obtaining employment in the private sector comprise this Sub-series. It also includes letters from the Governor's staff transmitting resumes to possible employers. These materials are arranged alphabetically by the name of the person on the resume. Similar materials can be found in the Sub-series Acknowledgements and Personnel.

Subseries 114. Retirement 1983-1990

The State Employee Retirement System is administered by the Connecticut State Employee Retirement Commission. The Commission also administers retirement systems for higher education, municipalities, the State's Attorney, and Public Defenders among others. The operating agency is the Retirement Division of the Comptroller's Office.

The Governor received numerous questions and concerns about former state employees' retirement benefits. Some questioned how a pension is calculated; others requested an increase in benefits to keep up with the cost of living. He also received reports from the Comptroller's Office and the Commission.

Letters of congratulations to retiring employees, surviving from 1983 only, are arranged alphabetically by the name of the employee. All other materials are organized chronologically.

Subseries 115. Revenue Services 1981-1990

The Department of Revenue Services is responsible for collecting and processing tax dollars and for enforcing compliance with tax laws and regulations. Although it does not make tax laws, this agency, and the Governor, receive complaints when the taxes are deemed too high or considered unfair. The volatile economy of the 1980s meant that the state repeatedly increased taxes; the number of letters increased accordingly. The majority of the correspondence in this Sub-series consists of complaints against one tax or another, including the tax on out-of-state purchases, on dividends and interest, and on services.

The Governor joined with his constituents in fighting a "commuter tax" imposed by New York State on Connecticut residents working in New York. O'Neill gathered the support of the state's Congressional delegation to pass a federal regulation prohibiting such a tax. Correspondence concerning this cross-border dispute is in theses files and in the Sub-series entitled Taxes.

The records related to the Department of Revenue Services also include statements of receipts and bi-weekly reports. The Commissioners were Orest T. Dubno (1980-1984), John G. Groppo (1985-1987) and Timothy F. Bannon (1988-1991).

Although part of Revenue Services for administrative purposes only, records pertaining to the Division of Special Revenue are filed under this subject heading. The Division, in conjunction with the Gaming Policy Board, regulates and administers legalized gaming activities in the state. These gaming activities include jail alai, off track betting (on horses), dog racing and the state lottery. The regulation of bingo games, bazaars, games of chance and raffles were added to the Division's responsibilities in 1986. In 1981, legislation established a pilot treatment program for chronic gamblers and allowed betting on horse and dog races on Sunday. A labor dispute in 1983 closed the Hartford jai alai fronton. All of these changes generated a sizeable amount of correspondence from Connecticut residents, most in protest.

Included in the records of the Division of Special Revenue are weekly sales reports for the lottery and biweekly reports of activities. A. W. Oppenheimer (1980-1987), Orland P. Ragazzi (1987-1989), and William V. Hickey (1989-1991) served as Executive Director in the O'Neill administration.

Subseries 116. Revenue Sharing 1980-1985

The State and Local Fiscal Assistance Act of 1972 was an attempt by the federal government to distribute funds more equally between affluent suburbs and poorer urban and rural areas. The money, taken from the General Fund, was placed into a trust fund administered by the Secretary of the Treasury. State governments received one-third of the state's allocation; the remaining two-thirds went to local government units. Until a 1976 amendment to the Act, funds were spent on "priority expenditures," namely public safety, environmental protection, public transportation, health, libraries, social services, recreation and financial management. The Act has been renewed many times since its first enactment.

The records dating from 1980-1981 consist of notices of municipal violations of provisions of the Act, primarily its anti-discrimination rules, or reports of resolutions or findings of compliance. There is also a document providing data used in calculating the state's allocation.

The 1985 document praised the Governor for his proposal of a state revenue sharing program.

Subseries 117. Secretary of the State 1981-1990

The Secretary of the State is an elected office. Initially created in 1638, it was mandated to be the official keeper of the state's public documents and formal records, and the State Seal. The Office still maintains records, but in more volume and variety than in 1638.

All bills, whether passed or not, are filed with the Secretary of the State. The Secretary records executive action on legislation and transmits any veto messages from the Governor to the General Assembly. Corporations seeking to incorporate or dissolve file the required documents with this office to document their legal existence. Elections are administered from the Secretary's office, as are nominations and voting rights laws. The office also edits and publishes the annual State Register and Manual.

Records kept by the Governor's office include copies of veto messages, questions about incorporation or dissolution of a company, records of special elections, questions concerning the application of election laws, and documents from a court case between the Republican Party and Secretary of the State Tashjian. The Republicans challenged a statute that required voters in a primary election to be registered voters of that party and instituted a party rule allowing independents to vote in Party primaries. The case was described as a contest over closed versus open primaries. The Supreme Court found in favor of the Republican Party, citing the need to protect First and Fourteenth Amendment Rights of voters.

Subseries 118. Shakespeare Theater 1985-1988

The American Shakespeare Theater, located in Stratford, fell upon hard financial times due in part to mismanagement. The Governor appointed a Task Force to explored options for maintaining the Theater by studying past problems and suggesting solutions. The records in this Sub-series document, in part, the creation, recommendations and actions of the Task Force. More complete records relating to the Task Force and the Theater can be found in the Series for Legal Counsel records.

Subseries 119. Snow Storm 1982

On April 6, 1982, the state was inundated by a spring snow storm. The Governor wrote letters of appreciation to the Department of Transportation, Department of Public Safety, the National Guard, and the Office of Civil Preparedness for their hard work.

Subseries 120. 1980-1981 Solderberg

The Governor received letters from individuals who appeared to have nothing else to do but write letters. That seems to have been the case with this person, who received his very own file. His letters appear to be about a court case, but are very difficult to read.

Subseries 121. Soldiers', Sailors' and Marines' Fund 1981-1982

This trust fund for veterans was established in 1919 to provide temporary financial assistance to help meet the health and maintenance needs of veterans. Funds cover food, shelter, clothing, fuel, and medical care and applicants are chosen by members of the American Legion. Administratively the Soldiers', Sailors' and Marines' Fund is part of the Department of Human Resources.

The records in this Sub-series include correspondence about a particularly difficult case, and a letter complaining about the lack of staff at the Fund offices.

Subseries 122. Somali Refugee File 1981

Save the Children and the Somali Refugee Relief Committee sought the Governor's support in publicizing the need to send aid to women and children who were refugees from Somalia.

Subseries 123. South Africa 1981

Human Rights issues in South Africa gained national recognition in the 1980s with the boycott of that country. In 1981, the General Assembly passed HB 5740 calling for the state to divest from companies doing business in South Africa. The Governor vetoed the bill, but he did appoint a Task Force on South African Investment Policy. Press releases, including Treasurer Henry Parker's statement on divesting, and correspondence concerning the bill, a possible veto override, and the creation of the Task Force document just a portion of this controversy within the state.

Also in 1981, the Episcopal Diocese of Hartford made plans for Bishop Desmond Tutu and other religious leaders from South Africa to visit Connecticut. Correspondence arranging schedules and recruiting the Governor to speak and a draft of the Governor's remarks represent the activities surrounding this important event.

Subseries 124. Special Elections 1981

This Sub-series consists of correspondence between the Secretary of the State and the Governor, and between the Secretary and town officials concerning scheduling special elections to fill vacant seats in the General Assembly. Most of the records concerning these elections can be found in the Sub-series for the Secretary of the State.

Subseries 125. State's Attorney 1981-1990

The Chief State's Attorney, his deputies and the State's Attorneys in each judicial district are the officers of the Division of Criminal Justice. The Division, which until 1984 was part of the Judicial Branch of state government, is charged with investigating and prosecuting all criminal matters in the state. The Division was transferred to the Executive Branch by a constitutional amendment but remains an independent agency.

The correspondence in this Sub-series primarily concerns criminal investigations, allegations of criminal activity, complaints about individual attorneys, complaints about the court system or about the local police, and charges of municipal corruption. Two cases in particular generated interest. One involved an investigation into Craig Appel's use of a state car for personal use (also found in the Sub-series Public Safety). The other concerned the innocence or guilt of Karin Aparo, who was accused of conspiring with her boy friend to kill her mother. Constituents wrote either in support of Aparo's innocence or affirmed her guilt.

Subseries 126. Statewide Emergency Telecommunications 1989

A report to the General Assembly from the Bureau of Statewide Emergency Telecommunications on the progress of implementing an enhanced 9-1-1 emergency telephone service comprises this Sub-series.

Subseries 127. Thank You 1988-1990

The letters in this Sub-series could have easily been filed under Acknowledgements. These are letters from the Governor and his staff thanking people for their suggestions or kind words, or letters to the Governor thanking him for participating in an event, for supporting a particular issue, for responding to a letter, or for providing a state flag.

Subseries 128. Transportation 1981-1990

The Department of Transportation was created in 1969, consolidating bureaus and departments responsible for various types of transportation under one administrative umbrella. It consisted of six divisions: the Office of Highway Safety and the Bureaus of Aeronautics, Highways, Planning and Research, Public Transportation, and Waterways. The correspondence, reports and federal directives in this Sub-series document the activities of each division. General transportation files are followed by those addressing air travel, bridges, highways, and railroads, arranged alphabetically by mode of travel.

The records also provide evidence of O'Neill's Herculean efforts at improving the state's infrastructure--roads, bridges and airports. Complaints about the condition of Connecticut's roadways prompted the Governor in 1981 to propose a ten year infrastructure renewal program. The legislature allocated some funding for bridge and road repair, but a series of fatal events dramatically increased the government's concern about highway safety. On January 19, 1983, a tractor trailer truck crashed into a line of cars in the exact-change lane at the Stratford toll booth on I-95, killing seven women and children. Then, on June 8 of that same year, a 100-foot span of the northbound side of the bridge across the Mianus River in Greenwich, fell into the river. Four vehicles followed, killing three people and critically injuring three more. Investigations of both events led to the eventual removal of the toll booths on Interstate 95 (under P.A. 83-553) and the allocation of adequate funds to inspect and repair the state's bridges supplemented by federal highway dollars.

The Governor received letters from constituents, both those in favor and those opposed to the removal of the toll booths. Those opposed realized the state would have to find other revenue to replace that collected along Connecticut's major highways.

As part of the Governor's 10-year infrastructure renewal program, the Department planned extending or widening certain highways to improve traffic flow. O'Neill and Commissioner J. William Burns were often bombarded with letters either in favor of or against the continuation of Interstate 84 to the border with Rhode Island, the improvement of Route 7 in the west and Route 6 in the east into expressways, widening Route 25 near Monroe, constructing I-284, building a Central Connecticut Expressway (Route 9) and widening I-91 north of Hartford and constructing a connector from I-91 to I-84, labeled I-291. These improvements also prompted letters on both sides of the issue of installing noise barriers and from residents whose land was acquired by the state, sometimes by eminent domain.

Another controversial issue involved unsafe tractor trailer trucks. The Governor tried to prohibit tandem trailers from the state's highways but was overruled by the federal government. The residents of Greenwich tried to change the Governor's mind about installing a truck weigh station at the site of the former toll booth with little success.

Complaints about traffic congestion, particularly in Fairfield County, were no different in the 1980s than they were in the 1990s. However, the cleanliness of the highway rest areas was one complaint the Department successfully resolved. Once infrastructure renewal began in earnest, however, letters complaining about delays due to construction took the place of those addressing rest areas.

An integral part of O'Neill's infrastructure plan was improving facilities at Bradley International Airport. New runways, refurbished terminals, additional parking, and non-stop flights to Amsterdam were just a few of the projects the Governor planned and which are documented in these records.

The Department of Transportation is responsible for bus services within and between cities. Due to federal cuts, a number of routes were eliminated and schedules were reduced. At the same time, however, federal regulations required services for the elderly and the disabled. Correspondence and reports illustrate the pressures placed on the state by its constituents and by the federal government.

Rail service in Connecticut was an issue contantly before the Governor. Both Conrail and Amtrak faced bankruptcy in the face of decreasing freight hauling and massive funding cuts from the federal government. Several railroads vied to purchase portions of Conrail's lines. Documents concerning these negotiations constitute the bulk of the material related to railroads.

Metro-North eventually provided commuter service between New Haven and New York. Until the service was established, riders complained about the schedule and the condition of the cars. The Governor was bombarded with letters when Metro-North tried to raise fares, banned smoking, and tried to remove the café or bar cars. The re-opening of Shore Line East was a shining moment in the state's transportation history.

Arthur B. Powers served as Commissioner until October 1981. He was followed by J. William Burns who retired with the Governor in 1991. Lee Hawkins and Joe Prevusnak were liaisons from the Governor's office.

Most of the constituent letters were either "bucked" to the Department or forwarded for a draft response. The records are organized with general files first, followed by those concerned with aeronautics, buses, highways, rail, and the United States Department of Transportation.

Subseries 129. Treasurer 1981-1990

According to the state Constitution, "The Treasurer shall receive all monies belonging to the state, and disburse the same only as he may be directed by law." These laws enable the Treasurer to sell bonds, advertise unclaimed property, borrow money for the budget, and serve as trustee of pension, retirement, and trust funds benefiting the state and its employees. New laws affecting the Treasurer were enacted under O'Neill's administration. P.A. 81-343 created Yankee Mac, a pooled mortgage investment program. The state's funds were disinvested from companies doing business in South Africa under P.A. 82-324.

The records of the Treasurer primarily consist of statements of cash receipts and debt statements. The correspondence that does exist focuses on the state's divestment policy regarding South Africa, and on the Yankee Mac mortgage program. These letters were "bucked" to the Treasurer for response.

Henry E. Parker, Joan R. Kembler, and Francisco Borges served the Governor as Treasurer.

Subseries 130. Treasury, U.S. 1982-1983

The State and Local Fiscal Assistance Act of 1972 was an attempt by the federal government to distribute funds more equally between affluent suburbs and poorer urban and rural areas. The money, taken from the General Fund, was placed into a trust fund administered by the Secretary of the Treasury. State governments received one-third of the state's allocation; the remaining two-thirds went to local government units. Until a 1976 amendment to the Act, funds were spent on "priority expenditures," namely public safety, environmental protection, public transportation, health, libraries, social services, recreation and financial management. The Act has been renewed many times since its first enactment.

The records in this Sub-series consist of notices to the Governor of municipal violations of provisions of the Act, primarilyof its anti-discrimination rules. There are also decisions by the Department of Justice not to follow up on civil rights cases and notices about municipalities reaching compliance agreements with the U.S. Treasury.

The Governor also wrote to the U.S. Treasury opposing the reduction of customs facilities in Connecticut.

Subseries 131. Tri-State [Regional Planning Commission] 1981

This Sub-series primarily consists of minutes of meetings of the Tri-State Regional Planning Commission. Connecticut, New Jersey and New York constituted the Commission, an agency charged with conducting regional planning and policy analysis of issues affecting all three states. A Task Force appointed by the three Governors studied the Commission's effectiveness and recommended that it be abolished. O'Neill announced Connecticut's withdrawal from the Commission in October 1981.

Additional documents concerning this Commission can be found in the Sub-series entitled O.P.M.

Subseries 132. Tufaro, Anthony 1988

Anthony Tufaro was present on April 23, 1987, when the L'Ambiance Plaza in Bridgeport collapsed. Although he was not an emergency worker, he burrowed under the wreckage to find survivors. In 1988 he requested the Governor's help in finding state or federal funding so he could study to be a certified rescue technician.

Subseries 133. United Way 1981-1990

United Way of American is a community-based national movement with a mission to improve people's lives by mobilizing community resources. There are approximately 1,400 local organizations, each of which is independent, separately incorporated and governed by volunteers. The organization is best known for raising funds for social programs. The correspondence and memoranda in this Sub-series document the state government's participation in the fundraising drive.

Subseries 134. Veterans 1981-1990

The Veterans' Home and Hospital in Rocky Hill was governed by an eight-member Commission "responsible for administering statutes that authorize aid and services to qualifying veterans and their dependants." The Home and Hospital provides "general medical and surgical care for veterans honorably discharged from the armed services of the United States who served the nation in time of war." Veterans receive acute and long-term care. Originally part of the Department of Health, the Home and Hospital became part of the newly created Department of Veterans' Affairs in 1988.

O'Neill served as a combat flyer during the Korean War so he took an active interest in veteran's affairs. He is a life member of the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He proposed and supported the creation of the state Veterans Cemetery in Middletown, increased benefits for veterans and their dependents, and established the Department of Veteran Affairs.

The records in this Sub-series consists in part of requests for help obtaining veterans' benefits, annual reports on the Veteran's Home and Hospital, information about the Women Veterans Task Force, complaints about the Veterans' Home and Hospital, and letters concerning the need for job training for veterans. The Governor also received letters asking for his support of the creation of a Purple Heart Museum. Financial analyses, draft regulations, job descriptions and other records document the creation the Department of Veteran Affairs. Additional documents relate to the evaluation of the constitutionality of residency requirements for receiving veterans' benefits.

Joe Prevusnak served as the Governor's liaison to the Department.

Additional information about the Veterans' Home and Hospital and the creation of the Department of Veterans' Affairs can be found in the records of Administrative Aide David McQuade.

Subseries 135. Vice President 1981

Governor O'Neill's staff evidently believed they would receive more correspondence from Vice President Bush and so created this file. It contains one letter, thanking the Governor for his report suggesting areas for regulatory relief.

Subseries 136. Victim Services 1989-1990

The General Assembly created a statewide assistance program in 1985. The purpose of the program, in part, was to assist crime victims through the prosecution activities of the criminal justice system, obtain social services support for counseling and health services, provide court escort and transportation, and facilitate the return of stolen property. Legislation passed in 1987 mandated a clearinghouse for information on crime and tort victims, and changed the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board to the Commission on Victim Services. Administratively the Commission is part of the Office of Policy and Management.

An essay on victim's rights, requests for assistance or compensation, and information about the Asbestos Victims Special Fund comprise this Sub-series.

Subseries 137. Volunteers 1981-1990

The bulk of the materials in this Sub-series are applications from various social service agencies in the state to the Federal Domestic Volunteer Agency (Action) for VISTA volunteers. Each request for volunteers had to have the Governor's approval, which in most cases accompanies the applications in these files.

VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) places individuals with community-based agencies to help find long-term solutions to problems caused by poverty. The idea for this domestic volunteer program developed shortly after the Peace Corps, although it did not become a formal entity until 1964. Volunteers commit to one year of service and get modest--poverty level--pay to cover living expenses.

Subseries 138. Washington Office 1981-1988

Connecticut Governors maintained an office in Washington, DC to serve as liaison with the state's Congressional delegation and to monitor legislation proposed and debated in the House and Senate. The files from the Governor's office are incomplete, consisting primarily of activity reports and reports on major issues before Congress. Ann Sullivan managed the Washington Office during O'Neill's tenure.

Additional records transferred to the State Archives from the Washington Office are found in Series 4.

Subseries 139. Wash[ington] Testimony 1981

This Sub-series consists of a briefing book for Governor O'Neill, including a schedule, information on the committee he was testifying before, background information on the Low Income Energy Assistance Program in Connecticut, and the text of O'Neill's comments. He testified before the Senate Labor and Human Resources Subcommittee on Aging, Family and Human Services about the value of low income energy assistance programs. The Governor was representing the Coalition of Northeastern Governors.

Subseries 140. Welcome 1981-1982

The Governor welcomed special guests to the State of Connecticut in a series of letters that extolled the state's natural beauty and distinctive history. His guests included Doctor Berilo Ramos Borba, Rector of the Federal University of Paraiba, Brazil and the Pearl Harbor Attack Veterans' Association. Dr. Borba planned to develop exchange programs with the University of Connecticut and Central Connecticut State College.

Subseries 141. Wildey, William 1981-1982

William Wildey once worked as Chief of Maintenance at the University of Connecticut. He was fired in 1971 and received unemployment compensation even though he was employed elsewhere. He refused the state's request for repayment of the compensation funds he had received and the case ended up in court. Wildey repeatedly sent requests to the Governor and his aide Chris Cooper for help with living and medical expenses, which he felt the state owed him.

Subseries 142. Women 1981-1990

The Governor's staff filed any letters and reports related to women's issues in this subject area. The material primarily includes information about state and national women's organizations, communications from the League of Women Voters and the Permanent Commission on the Status of Women, reports from the state's White House Conference on Children and Youth, legislative agendas from women's organizations, and letters requesting nominations for awards to outstanding women. One significant pair of letters, dated 1990, express two individuals' anti-abortion stance. The Governor responded by defending H.B. 5447, An Act Concerning the Repeal of Certain Statutes, which he felt represented a balance between a woman's right to privacy the state's interest in fetal viability.

Subseries 143. Mags 1987-1990

Certain issues proved more controversial than others, so some generated more mail. To handle the influx of letters and to save staff time, standard or form letters were created in a word processing program. The correspondent's name and address would appear in the salutation, but the text of the letter was the same. The staff called these "Mags." Each issue was assigned to a different staff member, and that person's initials or name often appeared on the folder label. These have been transcribed exactly.

The issues that generated the most correspondence included the nursing shortage, legislation adding sexual orientation to the anti-discrimination law, the impact of budget cuts on nursing homes, the state income tax, and a proposed utility tax.

Not all of the letters on a particular issue were filed with the mags. Additional letters and the Governor's response can be found in the appropriate Sub-series.

These files are organized chronologically and then alphabetically by the title on the original folder.

Series II. Legal Counsel Records. 1975 - 1990

Subseries 1. Jay Jackson 1975-1988

Jay Jackson continued as O'Neill's Legal Counsel, a position he had held under Governor Grasso. He advised the Governor about the Tashjian v. Republican Party dispute, legal jurisdiction on Indian reservations, and the investigation into alleged illegal trading of pieces from the Colt firearm collection at the Museum of Connecticut History. He also supported the Governor during several natural disasters, including Hurricane Gloria in 1985. Jackson's records consist of reports, correspondence, memoranda, and legal documents like subpoenas, motions, and summonses.

Subseries 2. Howard Rifkin 1988-1990

Howard Rifkin assumed the role of Legal Counsel in 1988 and served to the end of the Governor's term. Rifkin was part of the investigation team charged with examining the use of tape recorders in police stations. Lester Forst, Commissioner of Public Safety, was forced to retire as a result of the scandal. Rifkin also helped the Governor sort through a review of the administration of the Department of Revenue Services and an investigation of the UConn Health Center for misappropriation of funds. His records consist of reports, correspondence, memoranda, notes, case law, and legal documents like subpoenas, motions, and summonses. These materials are organized in a roughly chronological order.

Subseries 3. Legal Counsel 1983-1990

The Legal Counsel kept records of special elections called to fill vacant positions in state government. These elections crossed terms of the two counsels to the Governor and so the special elections materials are filed together in this Sub-series. They include letters of resignation, the Governor's orders for elections, notices to the Secretary of the State, writs of special election, and vote results. These materials are arranged chronologically.

Subseries 4. American Shakespeare Theater 1983-1987

The Governor appointed a Task Force to study how to revive the American Shakespeare Theater in Stratford. The Theater had not succeeded financially, and it's governing body turned to the state for help. The state eventually purchased the site and leased it back to the Theater's newly reconstituted Board of Directors.

Jay Jackson served on the Task Force and these records document his service. They also contain copies of the Governor's correspondence with Task Force members, constituents, and organizations that could provide assistance. Jackson's records include reports from the U.S. Department of the Interior, the Connecticut Small business Development Center, and from the Task Force itself. He also kept copies of lease agreements, bankruptcy and long-range plans, minutes of the Task Force meetings, and his own correspondence.

Series III. Assistant Records. 1978 - 1990

Subseries 1. Robert Grant 1988-1990

Robert Grant was one of the Governor's Administrative Aides for Policy and Programs. He was involved with the Governor's Task Force on the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities. His files consist of correspondence, agendas and minutes of the Task Force, investigative findings, transcripts of public hearings, and a final report. These are followed by the Commission's responses to the findings, drafts and passage of P.A. 89-332 and plans for implementation.

Subseries 2. David McQuade 1978-1989

McQuade was one of the Governor's Administrative Aides for Policy and Programs. He was assigned as the Governor's representative to monitor, research and develop policies for the potable water initiative. He served on the Governor's Commission on Equity and Excellence in Education and helped draft and pass the Education Enhancement Act. He also monitored the Iroquois Pipeline controversy, the Governor's Commission to Study the Veteran's Home and Hospital, and property tax relief issues. Among the most interesting materials in this Sub-series are documents that illustrate the development of and lobbying for bills in the legislature. Some of the best examples are the Education Enhancement Act which increased teachers salaries, property tax relief, and the reorganization of the Veterans' Home and Hospital.

Subseries 3. Gov's Building Construction Advisory Commission 1987

On April 23, 1987, the L'Ambiance Plaza building, under construction in Bridgeport, collapsed, killing 28. The Governor appointed a Committee to review information from investigating bodies about the cause of the collapse and to review Connecticut's building procedures. Representative Richard Schneller was appointed chairman. Chad McCollum, the Governor's Chief of Staff, monitored the progress of the Committee's work. The materials in this Sub-series consist of letters concerning the creation of the committee, meeting minutes and notices, interim reports, information gathered from federal agencies and the construction contractor, and the final Committee report.

Series IV. Washington Office Records. 1977 - 1990

Subseries 1. Grasso Administration 1977-1980

Some material from Governor Grasso's administration was found with O'Neill's records, probably related to issues that carried over into his term. Grasso's records from the Washington Office include information about and from the Coalition of New England Governors, reports on the impact of federal legislation on Connecticut, and reports on sessions of Congress.

Subseries 2. O'Neill Administration 1981-1990

O'Neill maintained the state's office in Washington, DC during his administration to monitor federal legislation and to assist with lobbying in the state's interests. Ann Sullivan directed the office. These records were transferred to the State Library from the Office and were not accessioned as part of the Governor's office records.

Records included in this Sub-series, namely reports and correspondence, relate to issues such as the consolidation of customs service, the National Governors' Association, the federal budget, low level radioactive waste, taxes, and transportation infrastructure. Sullivan and her staff also regularly reported on actions of Congress that could affect the state.

Series V. Press Office Records. 1980 - 1990

Subseries 1. Speeches 1980-1987

This Sub-series consists of the texts of the Governor's speeches, sometimes in multiple drafts. These speeches provide the best source for learning about the Governor's policies and about new initiatives.

Before 1986, the speech files include background information on the event, the people participating, the business or organization, or the location. The files may also include information used to prepare the speech. The speeches in 1987 consist of the final text only. When the Governor was hospitalized in November 1981, his wife Nikki, or Lieutenant Governor Fauliso, gave speeches in his behalf. There are no files for speeches dating between June 1985-December 1986, and nothing beyond November 1987.

The speeches and files are arranged chronologically. The speeches from 1980-81 were originally accessioned with Governor Grasso's material, as part 7. After consultation with the State Archivist, the Project Archivist removed them from that collection and incorporated them into O'Neill's records to expedite access.

Subseries 2. Schedules 1981-1986

The Press Office kept typed schedules of the Governor's meetings with his staff or agency heads, along with public meetings and events involving the Governor. Sometimes the schedules are accompanied by supporting materials such as invitations, press releases, itineraries, or newspaper articles. These schedules were used to identify many of the photographs in the collection. There are no schedules dated after 1986. The management of the Press Office changed about this time, and either Larry DeBear's successor was not as meticulous at saving records, or the files were never part of the Governor's records transferred to the State Archives.

Subseries 3. Press Summaries 1981-1986

On a daily or weekly basis, the Press Office prepared a summary of news related to the state government that appeared in Connecticut newspapers. The office staff also clipped the newspaper stories themselves and attached these to the summaries. These files are not complete; there are many gaps, and there are no summaries dated after 1986. The management of the Press Office changed about this time, and either Larrye DeBear's successor was not as meticulous at saving records, or they were never part of the Governor's office records that were transferred to the State Archives.

Subseries 4. Correspondence 1983-1986

This Sub-series consists of requests to the press office for a proclamation or official statement, for copies of the Governor's speeches or for his photograph.

Subseries 5. Proclamations 1984-1990

Proclamations designate specific dates for commemorating people or events. The proclamations in the Governor's records is not a complete run; they date from 1984 and 1987-1990. This collection includes documents with the original gold seal and copies with a black and white seal. The State Archives has a separate collection of Proclamations, as does the Government Information Services division.

Subseries 6. Press Releases 1981-1990

Originally in three-ring binders, the press releases were filed in reverse chronological order. That order has been changed; everything is now in chronological order.

This Sub-series includes, in addition to press releases, copies of correspondence to or from the Governor, copies of official statements, nominations for various offices, and, most importantly, policy statements. In conjunction with the Sub-series Speeches, these records provide some of the best information on governmental policies.

Larry DeBear headed the Governor's press office until December 1985. He had originally headed Governor Grasso's press office. Jon Sandberg assumed the duties of Press Secretary in January 1986.

Subseries 7. Newspaper Clippings 1981-1988

These materials were found in a separate carton with no indication from which office they came. Due to the fact that the bulk were newspaper articles, they were organized with the Press Office materials. In addition to the articles, there are some press releases, reports, and correspondence, possibly used as background information for the press staff in preparing releases and briefings.

The bulk of the newspaper articles and reports relate to infrastructure, including the collapse of the Mianus River Bridge on I-95 in Greenwich. One folder concerns the work of the Governor's Commission on Private and Public Responsibilities for Financing Long Term Care for the Elderly.

Subseries 8. Photographs 1980-1990

O'Neills' unofficial photographer was someone from the Department of Public Works. Al Couture and Tony Calabrese served in that capacity, taking images primarily in the Governor's office when he presented awards and official statements or when he received visiting dignitaries. These are mostly posed pictures, providing little insight into the Governor's activities outside the office.

The photographs are arranged roughly in chronological order; the previous organization of the images has been refined when correct dates and events were found, resulting in some being filed out of chronological order. The names of individuals in each image, when they are known, are recorded on the back of the photograph. Most of the photographs are black and white, and some are accompanied by press releases or news stories, and some also exist as negatives. The negatives are arranged chronologically following the prints. Please note that more than one folder is found in each box.

More detailed information about the photographs can be found in a separate database entitled O'Neill Photographs. Please ask a reference librarian for assistance in accessing this information.

Series VI. Campaign Material. 1982 - 1986

Subseries 1. Campaign Management 1982

The Governor's campaign staff collected press releases, answers to questionnaires, and background information on issues covered by the questionnaires or asked by reporters. Also included in this Sub-series are newspaper articles about Republican opponent Lewis Rome, documenting his public statements and his attacks on the Governor. His most egregious accusation was that the Governor at one time took illegal campaign contributions from the Department of Public Transportation. These articles are supplemented by a report on Rome's voting record in the General Assembly and on the lobbying activities of his law firm.

Subseries 2. Editing Directions 1982, 1986

Raymond D. Strother's Washington DC-based media firm created the campaign advertisements broadcast on television and radio during O'Neill's 1982 and 1986 gubernatorial campaigns. Editing directions gave instructions about where on a tape or film a particular sound or image could be located when editors began compiling the final version.

Subseries 3. Campaign Advertisements 1982-1986

Raw 16mm film footage, 1/4-inch audio tapes, one-inch videotape transfer masters, and VHS final versions of television campaign advertisements developed and broadcast for O'Neill's 1982 and 1986 gubernatorial campaigns. Raymond Strother, Ltd. of Washington, DC produced the advertisements.

Series VII. Oversize. 1981 - 1990

Subseries 1. Oversize 1981-1990

Oversized materials.

Series VIII. Restricted. 1981 - 1990

Subseries 1. Restricted Materials 1981-1990

Materials removed from the collection and replaced with redacted copies in order to protect personal information.

Series IX. Audio-Visual Materials. 1989 - 1990

Subseries 1. Audio-Visual Materials 1989-1990

Some constitutents felt they could get their message across better if it was recorded. Two micro cassettes and a videocassette that accompanied correspondence filed in the Series Constituent Correspondence comprise this Sub-series.

Return to the Table of Contents