Senator Witkos Joins Call for Swift Action on Deficit Mitigation

January 9, 2009

Hartford, CT – Just one day into the 2009 legislative session, Senate Republicans renewed their call for immediate legislative action to close the projected Fiscal Year 09 budget deficit. The Senate Republican Caucus also unveiled a deficit clock which calculates in real time the growth of the FY 09 budget deficit.

“We had an opportunity to act on January 2nd by adopting the Governor’s deficit mitigation proposal and failed to do so. Senate Republicans presented another opportunity yesterday to reduce spending by streamlining our own branch of government. Our proposal to consolidate legislative committees would have saved more than $1.2 million. If we cannot take even that modest step toward reducing the size of our own branch of government, how are we balance this year’s budget and overcome the $6 billion in projected deficits for FY10‐11,” said Senator McKinney.

State Senator Kevin Witkos (R-8 ) echoed the call for quick action on a deficit mitigation package saying the clock is a powerful reminder of the effects of the legislature’s inaction.

“When we teach children about fire safety, we use a simple concept: Stop, Drop and Roll. We need to apply the same idea to putting out the financial fire spreading throughout Connecticut,” said Senator Witkos. “We need to stop the clock, drop the deficit and roll it back to zero.”

“Until we stop the clock, our deficit grows by over $870,000 per day,” said Senator Witkos. “That’s 870,000 reasons a day for the legislature to act and act now on a comprehensive mitigation plan.”

Deficit Clock

• The Senate Republican deficit clock calculates the fiscal year (FY) 2009 estimated budget deficit;

• The FY 09 deficit, as determined by the Office of Fiscal Analysis on 11/24/08, is $320 million;

• This estimate accounts for legislative action taken on the first deficit mitigation plan;

• Connecticut’s estimated revenues for FY 09 are $16.627 billion while estimated expenditures are $16.947
billion;

• This means that, on a daily basis, Connecticut is spending $876,700 more than it is collecting.