Governor to Exceed Bond Cap Fasano Says it’s a “Step in the Wrong Direction”

November 19, 2014

Hartford – State Senator Len Fasano (R-North Haven), incoming Senate Minority Leader, released the following statement regarding today’s State Bond Commission meeting. Governor Malloy’s agenda for this meeting allocates $266,970,253 in new General Obligation bonds, an addition that pushes the state $167 million over the governor’s self-imposed soft bonding cap of $1.8 billion.

“This excessive borrowing at a time when our fiscal health is already in jeopardy is extremely worrisome. I understand the temptation to make more funds available through bonding, but exceeding the cap by millions will significantly increase future burdens on Connecticut families,” said Senator Fasano.

“Before this administration, the state had $3 billion worth of projects approved for bonding but not yet funded. Today, that number is up to $6 billion. We cannot continue approving projects without having the money to actually pay for them. That’s why the soft bond cap is such an important tool. It keeps us in check so we don’t overpromise and underperform.”

Senator Fasano also pointed to the fact that the current administration has borrowed in this calendar year $569 million more than the previous administration and has moved more than $1.6 billion in operating expenses to bonding. He noted that the General Obligation bond total could grow even larger if the December 12th bond meeting is kept on the calendar.

“In Connecticut, our per-taxpayer debt burden is over $44,000 and 11% of the state budget is dedicated to paying down debt. This bonding not only adds to that debt, it also comes on the heels of a current deficit of almost $100 million and an upcoming biennial deficit of $2.76 billion. Continuing to borrow so extravagantly will make it that much harder to climb out of the hole and get our finances back on track.”

“When all this debt catches up to us, we will be in serious trouble. It’s time to stop relying on the state’s credit card and start living within our means. Together, lawmakers and administrators have to change course. The governor exceeding the bond cap is a step in the wrong direction, at a time when Connecticut cannot afford more setbacks,” said Fasano.