CSG East’s 2022 Annual Meeting

CSG East’s 2022 Annual Meeting Agenda

On behalf of CSG East’s 2022 Co-chairs Senator Sharon Carson and Senator Lou D’Allesandro, we look forward to welcoming the Eastern region to Manchester, New Hampshire this August. Registration opens Wednesday, March 16, 2022. If you would like to sponsor the Annual Meeting, please contact AR Braver or download the sponsorship fact sheet and commitment form.


Click Here to Register!



Saturday, August 13

2:30 – 3:30 p.m.
Budget Committee Meeting
(for members of the Budget Committee only)

4 – 5 p.m.
Strategic Planning Meeting

6 p.m.
Depart for the Executive Committee dinner

6:30– 9:30 p.m.
Executive Committee Dinner at the LaBelle Winery
(by invitation only)

Sunday, August 14

8:15 – 9:15 a.m.

Annual Meeting Committee Meeting

9:45 a.m. – noon

Executive Committee Meeting

12:30 – 2:00 p.m.

Executive Committee Luncheon

Dean Kamen, founder, DEKA Research & Development Corporation

Advancing STEM Education
Dean Kamen will discuss how FIRST, (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), is transforming our culture by creating a world that inspires young people to be science and technology leaders and innovators.


2:30 – 3:00 p.m.

Nominations Committee Meeting


2:30 – 5:00 p.m

Council on Communities of Color Meeting

Race in the Statehouse: Equitable Governance

As public awareness of inequity increases, it is imperative that our nation encourage, develop, and sustain governing communities that are equipped to identify and rectify areas in our society where systemically race-based, unjust, and inequitable manifestations of policy are created and still legally upheld. State and local governments represent the best opportunity to advocate, legislate, and implement policies that directly improve quality of life for all citizens. This can only be achieved through equitable governance.

As a part of the annual Race in the State House series, policymakers, experts, and other leaders will how governing bodies can develop and support equitable legislation including a lack of engagement between constituents and legislators; expectation gaps between protest, politics, and policy making; the continued spread of “truth decay” in public discourse; and the lack of established safe spaces for legislators and support staff to convene and evaluate legislation on equity-based metrics as they seek to define “equitable governance” and why this approach is the answer to achieving better governance for all.


  • Charles Ellison, executive producer and host of Reality Check, WURD 96.1FM/900AM Philadelphia


  • Kevin Ahmaad Jenkins, Ph.D., award-wining journalist, and health disparities activist

5 – 6 p.m.

CSG East Eastern Leadership Academy and CSG National Toll Fellows Reception
(for graduates of the Eastern Leadership Academy and Toll Fellows only)

5:45 p.m.

Departures for opening dinner from the hotel.
Buses will run continuously from the hotel


6 – 9 p.m.

Opening Dinner at the McIntyre Ski Area

Monday, August 15

7:30 – 9:00 a.m.

General Breakfast


Policy Committee Breakfast Meetings:

7:30 – 9:30 a.m.

1. Agriculture and Rural Affairs

Member-to-member Roundtable Discussion — Members from each CSG East jurisdiction will be given an opportunity to share news from their home states, provinces, and territories, highlighting legislative initiatives, new programs, task force results, and new ideas developed over the past year. Fran Boyd, CSG East’s Washington advisor, will present on the latest federal initiatives that affect our region.


  • Senator Judy Schwank, Pennsylvania, co-chair, Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee
  • Representative Carolyn Partridge, Vermont, Co-Chair, Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee

8:00 – 9:30 a.m.

2. Health

Member-to-member roundtable updates ­— ­Discussion of individual and collaborative state efforts to meet challenges and innovate for the future, addressing issues such as public health, health equity, healthcare infrastructure, access, quality, and costs of healthcare.

Moderator: Senator Joshua Miller, Rhode Island


3. Transportation

Exploring Current State and Federal Transportation Issues — Discussions include: consideration of a resolution to establish a national infrastructure bank; exploring electric vehicles and state tax implications; roundtable sharing among committee members.


  • Representative Pat Brennan, Vermont, chair, CSG East Transportation Committee


  • Jay Golden, professor and director of The Dynamic Sustainability Lab, Syracuse University


4. Education and Workforce Development

Addressing Learning Gaps Related to the COVID-19 Pandemic

The extent of disruption from the COVID-19 pandemic has been acutely felt in K-12 education, particularly on student learning. Both the Northwest Evaluation Association (MAP) and Curriculum Associates (iReady) suggest lower than average performance since Spring of 2020, based on their national assessment data. Both organizations signal substantial erosion among underserved and at-risk populations. Research indicates that Black, Hispanic, and American Indian or Alaska Native students, student already behind a grade-level, and students in high poverty schools, faced disproportionate declines. As 2022 legislative sessions continue and policymakers consider potential remedies, many schools already are using intervention/remediation programs in the return to traditional schooling. Some states have filed, even passed, legislation that appropriates funds for these programs to target academic shortcomings. Further evaluation of these policies and outcomes could help states target academic achievement lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly among vulnerable populations.


  • Senator Brian Campion, chair, Vermont Senate Committee on Education


9:45 – 10:00 a.m.

Opening Ceremony

National Anthem

Singer: Elizabeth Goguet, Compliance Coordinator, New Hampshire Division of Fire Standards and Training, Emergency Medical Services

Honor Guard: The New Hampshire State Police Honor Guard


10:00 – 11:00 a.m.

Welcome: Governor Chris Sununu, New Hampshire

Opening Keynote: David Hayes, Special Assistant to the President for Climate Policy


11:00 – 11:15 a.m.


11:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

2022 Midterm Elections Preview

Speaker: David Wasserman, U.S. House editor and senior election analyst for the non-partisan newsletter, The Cook Political Report

12:30 – 2:00 p.m.

Plenary Luncheon: The Ona Judge Story


Erica Armstrong Dunbar, author, historian, and Charles and Mary Beard Professor of History, Rutgers University; executive producer on HBO Max’s The Gilded Age

Enslaved by George and Martha Washington, Ona “Oney” Judge served the Washington family at Mount Vernon, and the presidential residences in New York City and Philadelphia. Learning of plans to transfer her bondage to Martha’s granddaughter, known to be temperamental, Judge fled to New Hampshire. The subject of an intense “manhunt and” relentless pursuit by George Washington to recapture his property, Oney spent the remainder of her life in New Hampshire in uncertainty based on her stolen freedom. Oney Judge is one of America’s most intriguing historic figures but isn’t well-known outside of New Hampshire. Join us for the exciting story of Ona Judge, who was Never Caught and remained free in New Hampshire.


Concurrent Sessions

2:30 – 4:30 p.m.

1. Agriculture and Rural Affairs

Climate Change and Its Impact on Northeastern Agriculture — According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, ”Climate change presents real threats to U.S. agricultural production, forest resources, and rural economies. These threats have significant implications, not just for farmers, ranchers, and forest landowners, but for all Americans. As these risks continue and amplify, producers will be faced with the challenges of adapting.” Join us for an in-depth look at how these challenges will reshape agriculture nationally and regionally, and what legislators can do to protect and prepare their rural economies, producers, and farming families.


David Hollinger, Ph.D., director, USDA Northeast Climate Hub, USDA Forest Service Research Center

Russell C. Redding, Secretary, Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture


2. Transportation

Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act: What it Means for the States — The recently enacted federal bipartisan infrastructure law reauthorizes surface transportation programs for five years and provides significant new investment in the various transportation modes. The Act provides new federal funding to support roads and bridges, public transit, freight and passenger rail, ports, airports, and other infrastructure areas. This esteemed panel of modal experts will provide important information on what current and new funding opportunities exist for the states.


  • Representative Pat Brennan, Vermont; chair, CSG East Transportation Committee


  • Florence Chen, associate director for bipartisan infrastructure law implementation, U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT)
  • Susan Howard, director, policy and government affairs, American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)
  • Art Guzzetti, vice president, policy and mobility, American Public Transportation Association (APTA)
  • Devon Barnhart, director, OneRail Coalition
  • Andrew McLean, transportation policy specialist, CDM Smith, and former chair, Joint Standing Committee on Transportation (Maine)

6 – 7 p.m.

Friends of Canada Reception

7 p.m.

Dinner on your own

9 – 10 p.m.

SGAC reception in the Penstock

Tuesday, August 16

7:30 – 9:00 a.m.

General Breakfast


Policy Committee Breakfast Meetings

7:30 – 9:30 a.m.

1. Agriculture and Rural Affairs

Rural Broadband: Helping States Fund the Final Mile — Broadband plays a central role in all aspects of modern life, from education to logistics, health, and agribusiness. However, 25 percent of the U.S. rural population still lacks access to even minimum-speed broadband. But now, through the recently passed Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, states will receive hundreds of millions of dollars for broadband buildout. How states manage and oversee the distribution of this money will be critical in the months and years ahead. Join our panel of experts as they lead discussion on the most critical state-level solutions for bridging the connectivity gap.


  • Senator Brian Pettyjohn, Delaware
  • Paul Garnett, founder and CEO, The Vernonburg Group

8:00 – 9:30 a.m.

2. Energy and Environment

Advancing Offshore Wind in the Northeast — Offshore wind activity has gained momentum in the Northeast, with some 30 gigawatts on track for development by 2030, enough to power roughly 20 million homes. The industry is expected to support tens of thousands of jobs and reduce carbon pollution, but it is still nascent, and maximizing its success will require coordinated efforts among states, industry, the federal government, and local stakeholders. This session will provide a status report on current commercial-scale offshore wind projects, efforts to scale transmission and other infrastructure to create greater efficiencies and reduce costs, and an update on workforce and supply-chain development opportunities throughout the region.


  • Senator Marc Pacheco, Massachusetts, co-chair, CSG East Energy and Environment Committee


  • Christian Scorzoni, director of government affairs, Vineyard Wind
  • Peter Shattuck, president, Anbaric New England
  • Bob Gordon, commissioner, New Jersey Board of Public Utilities
  • Senator David Watters, New Hampshire, chair, New Hampshire Commission to Study Offshore Wind and Port Development
  • Rep. Lori Gramlich, Maine

8:00 – 9:30 a.m.

3. Health

The Impact of Covid-19 on Medicaid and State Health Policy — A panel of state officials will discuss challenges and responses to Medicaid and other state health policies spurred by the COVID-19 pandemic.


  • Patricia Tilley, director of Division of Public Health Services, New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)


8:00 – 9:30 a.m.

4. Canada-U.S. Relations

Bilateral Relations and the U.S.-Canadian Border: Putting the pieces back together post-COVID — After two years of a closed then partially open border, how do the United States and Canada define a “new normal?” The panel will look at the consequences of the border closure during the pandemic and its effect on border communities, local economies, trucking, and tourism. The panel will also discuss recent irritants in the bilateral relationship, including Buy-American provisions in stimulus legislation, and sector-specific issues such as electric vehicles, potatoes, and softwood lumber.


  • Assemblyman Billy Jones, New York; co-chair, Canada-U.S. Relations Committee
  • MNA Guy Ouellette, Québec; co-chair, Canada-U.S. Relations Committee


  • Christopher Sands, director, Wilson Center Canada Institute
  • Garry Douglas, president and CEO, North Country Chamber of Commerce

10:00 – 11:45 a.m.

Plenary Session

Opioids and Harm: States Act — State efforts to address to reduce the devastating effects of opioids will be enhanced by the $26 billion global opioid settlement that requires 85 percent of funds to be used for treatment, education, and prevention. Drug overdoses are the leading cause of injury related deaths in the United States, with nearly 75 percent of those deaths involving opioids. Several jurisdictions in the CSG East region — Quebec, Ontario (Toronto), Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island — have worked with legislators, police, and health professionals to address the growing opioid epidemic. The panel will discuss opioid deaths, various approaches to harm reduction, and experiences with overdose prevention centers representing collaborations at the sub-federal level and collaboration among Canadian and U.S. members.


  • Gordon Smith, Director of Opioid Response, State of Maine
  • Carol Wei, MS, FNP, RN – SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University College of Nursing Community and acute care nurse Brooklyn, NY
  • Brandon Marshall, Ph.D., associate professor, Epidemiology School of Public Health, Brown University; expert advisor to the Rhode Island Governor’s Overdose Prevention and Intervention Task Force


  • Marie–Claude Francoeur, Québec delegate to New England
  • Richard Cloutier, MSN, RN, Advisor to Québec government and community on harm reduction and drug use
  • Senator Joshua Miller, Rhode Island; chair, Rhode Island Senate Committee on Health and Human Services
  • Sam Rivera, executive director, New York Harm Reduction Educators and Washington Heights Corner Project

12:15 – 1:45 p.m.

Plenary Luncheon

The Age of Transformation: Workforce Development and Education in a post COVID economy

More than one-half of the world’s 7.7 billion people still do not have access to the Internet, including millions of people in the United States, which has led the digital revolution.  Most of these non-adopters — whether by choice or circumstance — are poor, less educated, people of color, older, or living in rural communities. What are the consequences of digital exclusion?  A broad array of occupations is at risk for disruption or elimination because of technological change and automation.  Workers in nearly every industry are already being affected.  More than one third of job skills required for most jobs in 2016 have already been replaced by new technologies in 2020. It’s clear that those who are on the wrong side of the digital divide will fall deeper into poverty and social and physical isolation. Discussion will focus on what policy solutions can states promulgate to fill the gaps and remedy digital disparities in infrastructure and education to enhance U.S. competitiveness.

Moderator: Scott Spradling, Emmy award-winning former reporter, anchor and political director, WMUR-TV in Manchester, New Hampshire; founder, The Spradling Group.


  • Matt Dunne, founder and executive director, Center on Rural Innovation (CORI)
  • Nicol Turner Lee, senior fellow in governance studies; director, Center for Technology Innovation; co-editor-in-chief, TechTank, The Brookings Institution
  • Amelia Manning, chief operating officer, Southern New Hampshire University

2 – 5 p.m.

Off-site Policy Tours

1. Agriculture and Rural Affairs

Brightfarms (formerly lēf), a 75,000-square-foot controlled environment agriculture (CEA) facility in Loudon, New Hampshire, that produces 1.5 million pounds of lettuce greens per year hydroponically and with minimal human interaction.

Pleasantview Gardens, home of Proven Winners flowers and plants in Pembroke, New Hampshire. Their extensive facility and gardens currently feature 187 types of plants selected for their hardiness and beauty. Guests will tour the 30-acre facility, including the 14 acres of growing space in located in greenhouses and under cover.


2. Education and Workforce Development

Tour of the Advanced Regenerative Manufacturing Institute (ARMI)

Tour Leaders:

  • Tom Bollenbach, chief technology officer, ARMI | BioFabUSA
  • Maureen Toohey, deputy executive director, ARMI | BioFabUSA

Headquartered in Manchester, New Hampshire, the ARMI organization is funded by the U.S. Department of Defense. ARMI’s mission is to make practical the scalable manufacturing of engineered tissues and tissue-related technologies, to benefit existing industries and grow new ones. ARMI brings together a consortium of more than 175 partners from across industry, government, academia, and the non-profit sector to develop next-generation manufacturing processes and technologies for cells, tissues, and organs. Two groups of 20 people each will tour both the Tissue Foundry and ARMI Bioindustries.

Tissue Foundry

BioFabUSA’s Tissue Foundry is a working prototype of SMAC (Scalable, Modular, Automated, and Closed) manufacturing. SMAC will enable quality-by-design manufacturing, essential for the 25-year-old concept of the engineered organ to become economically feasible.

ARMI BioIndustries

ARMI BioIndustries is the full-service development and manufacturing operation within the Advanced Regenerative Manufacturing Institute (ARMI) that provides developers of engineered cells, tissues, and organs a comprehensive range of services covering process development, deep tissue, and material characterization, clinical manufacturing, and regulatory support. Located in a 30,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art development center, ARMI BioIndustries leverages BioFabUSA’s Tissue Foundry concept and the extensive experience and expertise of its scientists and engineers to enable the scalable, consistent and cost-effective manufacturing of engineered cells, tissues, and organs.

2:15 – 4:15 p.m.

Fiscal Roundtable

5:30 – 6:30 p.m.

Ontario 2023 Reception

6:30 – 9:30 p.m.

New Hampshire State Dinner

Wednesday, August 17

7:30 – 8:30 a.m.

Executive Committee Closing Business Session

8:30 – 10:00 a.m.

Closing Brunch Plenary
(Back-to-back sessions)

1. Tapping into a Diverse Workforce: Filling Unmet Employment Opportunities — The U.S. labor shortage is jeopardizing economic expansion in almost every state. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports there are more than 11.5 million jobs available in the United States, but only approximately 6 million unemployed workers. The huge gap between available jobs and available workers is true in every region of the United States. This is a sharp contrast to mid-2009 when there were multiple people vying for each job in every state.

At the same time, the country also is experiencing the “great resignation,” with workers opting out of current employment for myriad reasons, including concerns over COVID-19 safety and regulations, increased need for and a shortage of affordable childcare caused by the pandemic, desire for more fulfilling or higher-paying employment, and the “silver tsunami” of older workers retiring as they age.

States can fill these employment opportunities and stimulate their COVID recovery by focusing recruitment into employment opportunities for traditionally underutilized populations and utilizing work-based learning, re-skilling, and upskilling programs and new and innovative hiring approaches.

2. Solving the Employment Crisis: Looking Toward a Bright Future! Changes to the nation’s workforce and economy require new solutions — updates to work and employment policies and the systems that support workers and how they are valued. This panel will examine changes that may be required to get more people back to work and solve an employment crisis that has had an impact on many industries. It will highlight a program aimed at preparing, recruiting, developing, and retaining educators, and a state that is planning new investments in childcare to improve the labor participation of women in order to expand the workforce.


  • Thomas Kochan, Post-Tenure George Maverick Bunker Professor, MIT Sloan School of Management; faculty member, MIT Institute for Work and Employment Research.
  • David Donaldson, managing partner, National Center for Grow Your Own.

10:15 – 11:15 a.m.

Training the Workforce of Tomorrow: Developing Career Pathways for Youth and Young Adults

This session will provide an overview of high-quality career pathways for youth entering the workforce. The session will highlight policy and programmatic approaches in the public and private sectors that help youth reach their full potential through early employment, work-based learning, and mentoring experiences. The session also will focus on how policymakers can specifically engage with youth and young adults from underserved communities.


  • Abeer Sikder, policy analyst, CSG Center for Advancing Policy on Employment for Youth (CAPE-Youth)


  • Richard Tulikangas, director of the Vermont Career Advancement Project, HireAbility Vermont
  • Taryn M. Williams, assistant secretary of labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy, U.S. Department of Labor
  • Karen Bussey, Ph.D., policy advisor, New Jersey Office of the Secretary of Higher Education (OSHE)
  • Joseph Gianni, president, Bank of America – Greater Hartford


11:20 a.m. – 12:20 p.m.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility in Employment and Hiring Efforts

This session will provide an overview of strategies for enhancing diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility within the public and private sector workforces. The session will highlight policy and programmatic approaches to supporting the recruitment, retention, and promotion of historically underrepresented populations, including individuals from immigrant communities, individuals with disabilities, and women of color.


  • Bobby Silverstein, disability attorney, legislative and policy counsel, State Exchange on Employment and Disability (SEED)
  • Assemblywoman Catalina Cruz, New York
  • Kelli-Marie Vallieres, Ph.D., executive director, Connecticut Office of Workforce Strategy.


12:30 – 1:30 p.m.

Working lunch

Training, Reskilling and Upskilling the Workforce: Utilizing apprenticeships to fill employment gaps

Apprenticeships are a proven strategy for increasing labor force participation and lowering unemployment. By creating and fostering apprenticeships — particularly in the technology sector — states can engage untapped talent pools while also reskilling and upskilling employees into high quality careers. This session will feature presentations on innovative workforce development models that cities, counties, and states are using to train employees. State policymakers and subject-matter experts also will discuss how they engage individuals from underrepresented communities to support local infrastructure development.


  • Miriam Farnbauer, project director of the Skills Initiative


  • Angela V. McKnight, Assemblywoman, New Jersey
  • Laura Maristany, director of external affairs, Bitwise Industries.
  • Rayanne Hawkins, policy program manager, Research to Action Lab at the Urban Institute