Having barely put a toe in the water of summer this year, we’re already hearing about the August 12 primary election coming up in Connecticut.

That's when we will be asked to momentarily put aside beach fun for civic duty.

But if we go early enough in the day to vote (polls open at 6 am for registered Democrats and Republicans) there should be plenty of time to get back to the shore.

According to the secretary of the state’s office, there are at least 23 primaries in Connecticut in August, including a Republican primary for governor, lieutenant governor and state comptroller.

There are also 18 primaries for candidates in various districts across the state for the state Senate and House, in both major political parties.

These are especially important because most of the decisions that impact our everyday lives are made in the state legislature.

And this year, many races will settle open seats created by lawmakers who have decided not to run again—which means greater opportunity for change.

Connecticut certainly needs the help of the legislature to improve our economic fortunes and our standing in many national competitiveness studies.

We've been seeing steadier job creation in the state over the last few months, but still have a way to go to regain all that we lost during the recession.

We slipped a place in the most recent CNBC “America’s Top States for Business” study, now down to #46, and other rankings lately also have also been less than flattering. 

Whom we send to the State Capitol in January will have a lot to say about how we turn around our economy and those national rankings.

Meanwhile, here are some important voting facts:

  • You can register to vote online on the secretary of the state’s website. It’s convenient (and theoretically can be done from a beach chair!).
  • If you are, right now, neither a registered Democrat or Republican, you can still vote in the primary if you register with either major party by noon on August 11.
  • Planning to be out of town on vacation (or business) on August 12?  Absentee ballots for the primary will be available on July 22.

Now you know. So, let’s be sure to take the plunge and vote on Primary Day, Tuesday, Aug. 12.