Adopting A Connecticut State Budget

June 23, 2009

Assuming that we have not already done so by the time you read this, it is time for the General Assembly to work together with Governor Rell in a bipartisan manner to adopt a budget that, while unlikely to please everyone, will allow the state to provide necessary programs and services at a cost taxpayers can afford. From my point of view, that means cutting state spending and avoiding massive tax hikes that we simply cannot afford.

The General Assembly’s Democratic majority leadership ended last week by claiming that they have identified significant budget cuts. They claim that their new proposed budget cuts, along with a mix of borrowing and tax increases, would result in a balanced budget that protects state residents.

But, as they say, the devil is in the details. As I write this column on deadline, I have yet to see details of the Democratic majority’s latest budget proposal. Details of both Governor Rell’s and the Republican legislators’ budget proposals have been made public.

Earlier this year, the General Assembly’s Democratic majority proposed a state budget that called for raising taxes by $3.3 billion – the single largest tax increase in state history. When presented with the opportunity to pass it, every single Democratic state senator voted no. How will the Democratic majority’s rank and file members react to their leadership’s new proposal?

Clearly, compromise is necessary if the General Assembly is to pass a new state budget, hopefully by the time the new fiscal year begins on July 1st. However, while I am willing to compromise, I will not support any state budget that hurts Connecticut’s ability to emerge from this recession in a position to restore prosperity to our state.

As always, I am interested in hearing from you. I can be reached at my legislative office in Hartford at 1-800-842-1421, or via e-mail to [email protected].

Senator Rob Kane represents the 32nd Senatorial District, which includes the communities of Bethlehem, Bridgewater, Middlebury, Oxford, Seymour, Southbury, Thomaston, Roxbury, Watertown, Woodbury