Fasano wants to sit down with governor and Democrats to craft a long-term budgeting solution [NBC CT]

January 23, 2015

NBC Connecticut

The Office of Policy and Management projects a fiscal year shortfall of more than $120 million, according to a memo sent from OPM Secretary Benjamin Barnes to Comptroller Kevin Lembo.

When asked about the possible deficit, Gov. Dannel Malloy said he wasn’t concerned about such a small amount inside a much larger budget.”With the current numbers, we’re talking about $121 million out of $20,000 million dollars,” Malloy told reporters. “So we’ll manage this just as we’ve managed other challenges in the past.”
The governor and OPM ordered $54 million in cuts toward the end of 2013, but according to the most recent budget estimates, they weren’t enough.

“One, I’m thinking this is not a shocker, two they should have seen this coming,” said State Sen. Len Fasano, Minority Leader of the Connecticut Senate.

Fasano said he wants to sit down with the governor’s staff and Democratic members of the General Assembly to craft a long-term budgeting solution. He said there have to be ways to cut spending that haven’t yet been identified.

“We haven’t had a lot of snow. Maybe there’s some… some snow removal money we can move over or sand that we can move over that we’re not going to spend,” he said. “I don’t know that. That’s what conversations are about.”

The governor said he’s interested in hearing from the GOP.

“What they should do is you know, sit down and on the back of an envelope tell us what they would cut out of the budget,” Malloy said. “I would invite them to do that. That would be wonderful.”

He then added, “I’d love to hear their suggestions. It’s not so long ago that they considered eliminating children’s vaccinations.”

Fasano said with the General Assembly weeks away from hearing the governor’s budget proposals, “it’s time to set partisan politics aside.”