Sen. Witkos Votes in Favor of Bipartisan Budget Fix

March 30, 2016

Hartford – Today members of the Connecticut General Assembly passed a bipartisan deficit mitigation plan to close the fiscal year 2016 budget shortfall of $220 million. The plan will restore hospital funding in full, preserve town aid, and protect funding for core social services. The compromise legislation was negotiated between legislative Democrats and Republicans and Governor Dannel P. Malloy’s budget office.

“This is a small step in the right direction for the entire state of Connecticut,” said Senate Minority Leader Pro Tempore Kevin Witkos (R-Canton). “Our state is facing enormous budget deficits this year and next. This bipartisan package will mitigate the current year’s deficit, while eliminating painful cuts to core social services, town aid and hospitals. Had we not acted today, many state services would have been put in jeopardy. This budget fix is a testament to the potential for bipartisan cooperation, communication and collaboration among lawmakers to put our state on a better fiscal path. Today is a good day, and I hope to see continued efforts to restore our state’s financial health moving forward. We cannot survive a continuous cycle of tax increases followed by deficits. We need to make structural changes to the state budget that result in smart, targeted savings without hurting safety net services for those most in need. I applaud state leaders for working hard on this plan and taking this step forward together,” said Sen. Witkos.

The bipartisan deficit mitigation package achieves the following:

  • Closes the state’s $220 million current year deficit as estimated by the governor’s office and state comptroller.
  • Restores all $140 million in hospital funding, of which the state’s portion is $31.6 million, which was previously being withheld. This funding is partial reimbursement for hospitals’ Medicaid expenses and the care they provide to those most in need.
  • Preserves core government services and protects funding for many vital social services.
  • Eliminates proposed cuts to town aid.
  • Replaces the governor’s rescissions proposed on March 16.
  • Is made up of approximately 60% in budget cuts that can be rolled out into future years for long-term savings.