GOP Leaders Call for Special Session to Address Deficit

November 21, 2014

Actual Deficit Could Surpass 1% Trigger for Deficit Mitigation

Hartford – State Senator Len Fasano (R-North Haven), incoming Senate Minority Leader, and State Representative Themis Klarides (R-Derby), incoming House Minority Leader, today asked the governor and legislative leaders to call for a special legislative session to address the state’s deficit.

“It is imperative that we act today to address the state’s impending deficit,” said Fasano and Klarides in a letter to the governor and legislative leaders.

The incoming leaders explained that calculations based on reports from the Office of Fiscal Analysis (OFA) show that the actual deficit could be far greater than the $99.5 million deficit reported by the Office of Policy and Management (OPM). Because the actual deficit could surpass 1 percent of the state budget, this should trigger automatic deficit mitigation. Therefore, they are asking for a special session to take place no later than December 15, 2014.

“When you look at all the numbers the actual deficit could be far greater than what the administration has been reporting. Given the significance of this deficit, we are asking that the governor and legislative leaders work together to cooperatively resolve this financial emergency,” said the GOP leaders.

The letter specifies that OPM’s $99.5 million figure does not factor in potential deficits in additional areas of spending, as reported by OFA. If all of the shortfalls projected by OFA were included, the deficit could nearly double, reaching $198.3 million. This figure exceeds the 1 percent deficit mitigation trigger.

“We cannot reach a solution and properly address the true severity of the problem unless we sit down together and work across the aisle to change course, and get our finances back on track,” said Fasano and Klarides.