State Senator L. Scott Frantz Joins in Call for Swift Spending Cuts, No Tax Increases for FY 09

February 18, 2009

Hartford, CT – State Senator L. Scott Frantz (R-Greenwich) joined Republican legislators in calling once again for the General Assembly to take swift action on the state’s rapidly growing budget deficit by first closing the FY 09 gap. At a press conference last week, Senate and House Republicans unveiled their own proposal to bridge the FY 09 budget gap. The plan would accelerate Governor Rell’s own recommendations and also implement a number of cost-saving measures.

“We wanted to offer common-sense solutions that would immediately begin to release some pressure on the state’s finances for FY 09,” said Senator Frantz. “Each day that goes by, while Majority Democrats sit on the sidelines, we plunge deeper and deeper into debt. This financial crisis isn’t going away and the sooner we address FY 09’s budget gap, the sooner we can begin the even more daunting task of tackling the next two fiscal years.”

The Republican plan would reduce this year’s budget deficit by $925 million by changing the effective dates of spending cuts and other mitigation measures proposed by Governor Rell from July 1, 2009 to April 1, 2009. The plan also anticipates $360 million in federal funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and uses approximately $280 million of the state’s $1.4 billion rainy day fund, protecting more than $1.1 billion to help stave off tax increases in the next two fiscal years.

“One of the major goals of this proposal is to avoid tax increases,” said Senator Frantz. “This is a time when businesses are closing, homes are in foreclosure and jobs are being lost in record numbers. How can we logically, and in good conscience, ask for more from people already struggling to make ends meet? Instead, we need to focus on bridging this budget gap for FY 09 as quickly as possible before it is too late. Only then can we address the projected deficit for the next two fiscal years and effectively begin to protect and reinvigorate our tax base.”