Senator McLachlan Renews Call to Expand Governor’s Rescission Powers

January 20, 2009

Hartford, CT –State Senator Michael McLachlan (R-Danbury) today renewed his call for the General Assembly to expand Governor Rell’s rescission powers to help close the FY09 budget deficit, which has skyrocketed to more than $920 million.

State law currently allows the Governor to directly cut up to 3% of the total appropriation of any fund, and up to 5% of any appropriation. Senator McLachlan’s proposal, which he first introduced in the Senate on January 14th, would increase the Governor’s rescissionary authority to 6% of the total appropriation of the General Fund, and 10% of any line item in the budget. This would provide the Governor more flexibility in dealing with the FY 09 deficit as it continues to grow.

“To date, Governor Rell has been the only state official willing to make the difficult decisions necessary to address our budget crisis, but she has all but exhausted her statutory authority to make spending cuts,” said Senator McLachlan. “Meanwhile, the Democratic-led legislature has so far failed to take any meaningful steps to cut spending on their own. If the Democrats aren’t willing to make the difficult and sometimes unpopular decisions necessary to lead Connecticut out of its fiscal crisis, then they should give Governor Rell the power she needs to do the job on her own.”

Governor Rell has ordered approximately $170 million in rescissions to help close the FY09 budget deficit.

Senator McLachlan’s proposal was first introduced January 14th as Senate Amendment “E” to House Bill 5095. It was defeated 24-12 on a party line vote.