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HARTFORD – Americans for Prosperity-Connecticut (AFP-CT) is launching today an ad in support of legislation aimed at prohibiting cities and towns from charging additional fees for 911 calls. Specifically, the bill, HB 6015, introduced by Representative Larry Butler (D-72nd District) addresses a situation that has come to light in New Britain where Mayor Tim O’Brien has proposed an ordinance charging residents an additional fee for “nuisance” 911 calls.
“Public safety should never be deemed a revenue source. Yet, Mayor O’Brien seems intent on making it that way with this open-ended, up for interpretation ordinance that allows him to charge residents of New Britain a new fee for any 911 call that the city determines to be a ‘nuisance,’” said AFP-CT State Director JR Romano “Our concern is that the city will use these 911 fees to generate revenue with little recourse for the people they impose them upon.
“In this instance, individuals and families who benefit most from the 911 system stand to be punished through this tax for calling 911, or having 911 called too often in their community. This is simply not right and could lead to a decrease in public safety all for the sake of a little more revenue.”
The ad titled “Would You Hesitate?” will air on Comcast and encourages citizens to contact their legislators in support of Representative Butler’s bill. The educational efforts will also include complementary radio and online ads with the facts about the ordinance and the bill as well.
“Mayor O’Brien has yet to substantiate how he expects these fees to generate $1.8 million per year in New Britain. How many of the city’s 911 calls will be deemed a ‘nuisance’ in order to get to the proscribed number? And, most importantly, how will this affect public safety in New Britain?,” continued Romano. “We are proud to support Representative Butler’s bill which aims to prohibit municipalities from assessing these senseless fees on good faith 911 calls.”