Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Budget Starts Righting Ship-of-State

I voted to approve a state budget that ends the Governor’s executive order and restores municipal and education funding. The budget now goes to the House for approval.
I’m happy to say this bipartisan compromise budget eliminates the drastic cuts imposed by the Governor and does not force municipalities to pay for the state-negotiated teachers retirement fund. This is a budget that fairly funds education, towns, and the social services that are so important to Connecticut’s most vulnerable citizens.
The budget is the product of incredible compromises from both Democrats and Republicans. No side got everything it wanted.
Everyone is unhappy with the end product, which means that everybody had to give up many things they wanted. This budget starts the long-term process of righting Connecticut’s ship of state. It contains policy changes I have sought for since 2008. It means a better future is possible for our state.
In addition to restoring municipal and education funding, the budget:
  • Enacts a spending cap
  • Caps bonding at $1.9 billion per year
  • Stabilizes the Special Transportation Fund
  • Exempts Social Security from the income tax
  • Phases out the income tax on pensions
  • Funds day and employment services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities
  • Funds mental health and addiction services
  • Funds Care4Kids
  • Protects funding for senior programs

I look forward to the next legislative session and the opportunity to continue pursuing important policy changes that will make Connecticut more competitive, more fiscally stable, and business friendly.