Newtown GOP State Lawmakers Unveil No Tax Hike Budget

April 27, 2017

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Protects Core Services, Boosts Education Aid, Creates Stability for Towns & Cities and Does Not Rely on Tax Increases

Area Republican state lawmakers on Apr. 27 unveiled an alternative state budget which closes the current projected state deficit over the next two years without new taxes and without pushing state expenses onto towns, cities or hospitals. The “Confident Connecticut” budget includes increased education funding with a new funding formula, restores money for core social services, and provides for significant structural changes to state government that roll out into the future.

Sen. Tony Hwang said, “This Republican plan is about keeping our promise to towns, to schools and to Connecticut taxpayers. It contains no tax hikes, restores predictability for towns, and emphasizes our commitment to make their education mission whole.  It provides a path to budget sustainability by making tough government spending cuts, and it emphasizes accountability through a spending cap and requiring votes on union contracts.  This thoughtful, responsible document is the way forward for Connecticut, and Republicans will work with Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Democrats to pass it into law.”

“Today is the day I have been waiting for since the beginning of February.  Ever since the governor’s damaging budget was released, the House Republicans have been working on a budget that maintains most, if not all, municipal funding and does not raise taxes,” saidRep. J.P. Sredzinski (R-112).  “Connecticut’s fiscal crisis requires immediate action and severe, long-term structural changes to the budget that address the root of the problem, which is too much spending and passing the two largest tax increases in state history.  This Republican budget is the attitude adjustment we need to get our state back on track, reduce the tax burden on residents, and convince businesses to stay in Connecticut.  There are so many great concepts in this budget package and I’m ready to work with the governor and majority party to get this passed.”

 It is time for state legislators to lead and Republicans are up to the herculean budget challenge,” said Rep. Will Duff (R-Bethel).“Everyone I talk to, in the four towns I represent, whether it at a coffee shop or a gas station, ask me to work at making Connecticut more affordable, which is why I am thrilled that my proposal to end the state tax on pensions and Social Security is part of this budget plan.”

State Rep. Mitch Bolinsky (R-106) said, “I am so excited about this zero tax increase budget document because it presents good solutions to balancing our state’s finances and shows everyone where we stand, transparently, without the trick of moving liabilities off the balance sheet, like the majority’s Appropriations Committee budget did, before they blew it up.  In my three-terms in Hartford, this is the first truly accurate look at where the opportunities exist to streamline government and make hard decisions about wasteful or wastefully run programs that need an overhaul or re-thinking. This is what Newtown needs the state to do, as the foundation for and beginning of an economic turnaround.  As a member of the Appropriations Committee and Ranking Member on a sub-committee charged with analysis of several of the state’s constitutional offices, we literally worked the process backwards, staying true to our principles of no new taxes, finding efficiencies and fairly funding state government’s core functions such as education, mental health services, senior services, public safety, health, environment, veteran’s services, economic development and more.  We made some bold decisions and assumed a leadership role, which is what the Republican budget proposal represents. Without increasing your taxes, and by streamlining state agencies as well as imposing a strict spending cap, we have produced a cohesive set of ideas that will bring Connecticut back to financial stability.”

Bolinsky continued, “As a Newtown resident, parent, taxpayer and neighbor, I understand the mix of our Community’s values and really understand the deep concerns about how the state’s financial issues would affect our community.  Considering the Governor’s proposed devastating cuts to education and other state payments to our local government, I am also very happy to report that our budget proposal preserves Newtown’s 2018 educational cost grants and actually increases them by about $500,000 in 2019, before entering a ten-year transition into a functional ECS formula in 2020 that will be far more favorable than the Governor’s starting-point proposal.  And – the conversations about us sharing in the cost of state-negotiated teachers’ pensions, is off the table, giving us stability and the ability to predict and plan for our future community needs, wants and initiatives.  Just a word of caution…our budget is like any other budget at this stage and not likely to pass without changes.  It is, however, a terrific, common sense starting point and, unlike the majority’s Appropriations Committee budget, it is ‘on-the-table’ and ready to serve as the new starting point in the negotiations to arrive at a consensus budget by June 7, 2017.”

(Details of the GOP plan are attached)

A Confident Connecticut Municipal Runs

A Confident Connecticut Budget Detail

Budget Summary