Platform & Policies

Baird studied government at Connecticut College and has served in the Waterford town government on both the RTM and the Flood and Erosion Control Board. His opinion on the issues is guided by extensive studies conducted on each topic, and he believes he puts forward a clear, helpful, and optimistic vision for the future. As a member of the Waterford Representative Town Meeting, Baird further aims to serve as your mouthpiece by championing the issues most important to you. To that end, Baird is always open to meeting with residents of the district to discuss his platform and the issues facing our region and the state. If you have views or information that you would like to share, please find contact information for Baird on the home page.

Community 

As a lifelong and third generation resident of Waterford, I have chosen to run for office because I love our community. However, there is no denying Connecticut is facing significant challenges. Young people are leaving this state due to high costs of living and limited job opportunities, our state budget is in a state of crisis, and residents of Southeastern Connecticut are bearing the brunt of the burden placed on communities. 


I believe that we can do better. Waterford and Montville are great places to live, but Connecticut is in an economic decline. With strong, visionary leadership, we can, and will, reverse this trend. I believe that we can demand more of our elected officials. I believe that Connecticut has an opportunity to lead in sustainable economic development. I believe that we can balance our budget, produce clean energy here in CT, get our economy back on track, and promote education, health, and prosperity in Waterford and Montville. 


As a young person living in Southeastern CT, I want to fight for our community so that Waterford and Montville continue to be wonderful places to live and raise a family. 

Economy and Taxes 

Connecticut's economy continues to struggle, and taxes on Southeastern CT communities continue to rise. Connecticut has one of the highest reliances on property taxes of any state in the U.S. We must rebalance our dependency on property taxes in three ways: reform our tax policy, close tax loopholes, and demand fiscally responsible spending. Additionally, we must prioritize increasing the efficiency of our state and local governments. Public banking, regionalizing services, and long-term planning are just some of the ways to increase revenue, cut wasteful spending, and focus tax dollars on vital services. Restoring municipal aid to Southeastern CT communities is vital to the economic growth of our region. 


I am prepared to fight against the flow of money away from Southeastern CT and demand the restoration of support for our community. Rural and suburban Southeastern CT communities cannot continue to lose tax dollars to the cities at the expense of our own communities. Long-term solutions to CT’s economic stagnation require attracting businesses by building a young, educated workforce that is invested in living, working, and settling in our state. 


We must bring back high-tech manufacturing training and workforce training programs to Connecticut's colleges and universities. I pledge to support the preservation of Connecticut's community colleges and high school technical programs. The businesses are already here, the students are already here, and it is up to us to create the opportunity for these businesses to grow and strengthen our state. Rebuilding CT's economy requires creating a state where young workers want to, and can afford, to live. I will fight for policies that offer partial to full student loan forgiveness for students willing to live and work in Connecticut for at least five years. 

Fiscal Responsibility

Preventing each small Connecticut town from sharing assets with neighboring communities wastes millions of tax dollars every year. Regionalization must be made easier and encouraged for CT’s towns. The Connecticut General Assembly should take strong action to facilitate regionalization so that community services are more efficient and responsive. Representatives must initiate solutions that will end our state's fiscal crisis and lower the burden on CT residents and businesses. 

Connecticut should also explore the implementation of public banking, a system already present in our state through the CT Green Bank. The creation of a Connecticut State Bank would allow taxpayer dollars to be directly invested into new businesses, projects, and communities. A public bank will keep taxpayer dollars in our state and support Connecticut's economic development and financial recovery. 

Education

Strong schools build strong communities. As a candidate for State Representative, I pledge to consistently support policies that protect Connecticut’s public schools. The public education system is Connecticut’s greatest asset because education creates the opportunities needed to build an economically competitive state. Just as importantly, Connecticut’s public schools provide a wide variety of support programs to help our youth thrive physically, emotionally, and academically. As a state representative for Waterford and Montville, I would strongly oppose diverting public school funds to provide tax credits for private school tuition. I would also take action to end the payouts to private charter school management companies.


As the son of two public school teachers and an aspiring educator myself, I understand that Connecticut’s teachers are the foundation of our state’s school system. I pledge to support teachers by demanding the state fully fund the teachers’ retirement fund to guarantee financial stability and solvency. As your legislator, I will fight to restore Education Cost Share (ECS) funding to Southeastern CT's public schools and protect the future of our community's children. 

Energy

Developing wind and solar, both through concentrated and diffused generation, presents a tremendous economic opportunity for CT and will provide cheap, clean energy to consumers. I support Eversource Energy's proposal of a major wind-farm development project 65 miles off of the Connecticut coastline. Southeastern CT is flush with opportunities for the development of sustainable energy. 

Keeping Millstone active and running is a vital priority. Not only does it provide significant economic support to Waterford, but it is in direct competition with cheap, but environmentally devastating, fracked natural gas. Millstone is one of the most profitable nuclear power facilities in the US and remains a strong asset to our community. Still, Millstone will not remain in Waterford forever. We must begin preparing for a future now, when those tax dollars are no longer coming into our town budget and ensure the state of Connecticut is prepared to help Waterford through that transition process. 

Environment

The long-term fiscal success of our towns depends on maintaining environmental stewardship.  It is in our interest to protect the rural character of our community and keep our woodland, wetland, and marine ecosystems pristine and healthy. I support a statewide ban on single-use plastic bags and other initiatives to keep our oceans clean and pollution free. We must also work to develop abandoned and previously-developed properties while safeguarding our forests, streams, and farms. We must protect Connecticut as a popular destination for hunting, fishing, boating, and all kinds of environmental tourism. 

Additionally, I will fight for a repeal of the pipeline tax, which funds new and unnecessary fossil fuel pipelines through additional fees on Connecticut's ratepayers. I will also support repealing the restrictive version of net metering that limits the size of a solar system to 100% of the existing usage. Connecticut ratepayers deserve the freedom to develop their own clean energy infrastructure without the burden of fees that fund fossil fuel expansion in our state. 

Transportation

Attracting businesses to Connecticut will require significant improvements to our roadways. Companies do not want to do business in a state where it takes over 200% longer than necessary to move goods and people from point A to point B. We must make the repair and improvement of Connecticut's roads a priority and ensure that the 395/I-95 merger in Waterford is made safe for traffic in our region. Repairing our outdated and crumbling infrastructure is one of the most important things we can do to bring business back to Connecticut. 

Connecticut is a vital transportation conduit between New York and Boston. 40% of drivers on Connecticut's roads are from out of state. The strategic introduction of tolls might be a good way to ease the burden on taxpayers and fund the infrastructure development our state desperately needs. However, whether or not tolls help or hurt our state would depend entirely on how they were implemented. I would consider supporting toll-by-plate tolling if it were guaranteed that: the funds would be used exclusively for infrastructure improvement and not placed in the general fund, federal laws possibly requiring the payback of toll funds were taken into account, and tolling would not interfere with the business and travel of CT residents. 

Before any proposal about tolling can be taken seriously, however, we must ensure that Connecticut's weigh stations and inspection sites are fully manned and consistently operational. Connecticut, a state that is a major conduit between New York and Boston, has only eight weigh stations and inspection sites. Not only would properly manning these locations significantly increase state revenues, but would keep drivers, truckers, and communities safer. Keeping unsafe and/or overloaded trucks off of Connecticut's roadways also means fewer accidents which cost lives and shut down highways for hours. State troopers that I have spoken with have consistently shared their desire to see weigh station and inspection sites properly manned and located around the state, a request that I take very seriously and intend to translate into policy. 

Connecticut must also work to maintain and effectively expand our public transportation options. I fully support the expansion of rail services to New London County for commuter trains and strong public transportation networks operating in our state. We must also ensure that bus systems remain an efficient and practical transportation option throughout our state. 

Workers Rights 

I fully support the right of workers to collectively bargain, and I affirm the rights of unions to protect CT workers and their families. Unions are the first and best defenders of workers' rights and liberties. I support paid family leave for all CT workers and believe our state must fight gender discrimination in the workplace wherever and whenever we can. Finally, I support the gradual raising of the minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour, over a five year period, to strengthen our economy and empower working families. We must energize our economy from the bottom up, not the top down. 

Healthcare 

I am a strong proponent of widely accessible healthcare in Connecticut. As your representative, I pledge to protect the Affordable Care Act and to ensure that healthcare is available to all Connecticut residents. Healthcare is a human right and not something to be reserved for the privileged. Additionally, I plan to fully support policies that will help families with children with special needs or are providing care for an elderly parent. I have personally witnessed families struggling with both and know the support that is needed to provide care for loved ones. 


I believe every woman has the right to safe reproductive healthcare. I staunchly support legislation to prohibit any enterprise from imitating or falsely advertising healthcare services and will take action to end the proliferation of so-called Crisis Pregnancy Centers (CPC's) in Connecticut. 

Electoral Reform 

Connecticut's outdated and poorly designed ballots should be replaced with randomized ballots. Additionally, our state deserves a healthier electoral process. Ranked choice voting, recently made law in Maine, will ensures every individual's vote is counted and accurately translate voters' choices into votes. 


I fully support the Citizens Election Program which keeps big money out of politics and allows candidates to focus on the issues rather than constant fundraising. I will fight any attempts to weaken this program and will seek reforms that give the same CEP application requirements to all candidates who appear on the ballot. 

Firearms Policy

As a gun owner myself, I understand the importance of firearms safety. Connecticut has strong gun laws that have served our state well by decreasing the frequency of firearms deaths. I believe in upholding and supporting these laws while still respecting the Second Amendment rights of Connecticut citizens. I am proud to have earned the "Gun Sense Candidate Distinction" from Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense. 

Opioid Crisis

Fighting the opioid crisis means giving our communities the resources needed to effectively treat addiction and stop the distribution of lethal drugs. Many residents personally know someone impacted by this epidemic, and the death toll continues to rise. Our state must take this epidemic seriously and fight to end addiction by keeping legal opioids limited and regulated, providing effective and permanent treatment, and increasing the availability of alternative medications such as medical cannabis. Positive outcomes for opioid addiction treatment are entirely dependent upon appropriate treatment length. If resources are not provided to effectively treat opioid addiction the first time, then we are simply creating a revolving door system that is a disservice to victims, law enforcement, and taxpayers. 

Cannabis Policy 

Legalizing cannabis will benefit Connecticut in several ways. Enforcing our existing cannabis laws wastes the valuable time of our police forces, and our state can significantly benefit from a taxed and regulated cannabis industry. Legalizing cannabis will also lower the costs of medical cannabis, empower our state to combat the opioid epidemic, and prevent criminal enterprises from profiting from ineffective prohibition.