Fasano Statement re: House Democrat Press Conference on Proposal to Cut VoTech Schools

October 6, 2016

Hartford – Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano (R-North Haven) released the following statement in response to a House Democrat press conference regarding Connecticut vocational-technical high school cuts in the next fiscal year, a proposal made by the State Board of Education.

“Obviously the news that the Department of Education is looking at such deep cuts shows that the governor’s ‘new economic reality’ is getting worse and our future holds more painful cuts because of the inability of the governor and current legislative leaders to manage our state finances. The only reason a Democrat legislative leader would have a press conference to oppose an idea from the Malloy administration is to grab a headline and attempt to create the appearance of having a backbone. What House Democrats apparently forgot is that they are the majority in the legislature and therefore they control any and all budgets that get passed in the state of Connecticut. They don’t need to beg Gov. Malloy not to do something; they are the ones with the power to stop him. They are the ones with the authority to call a special session today so the legislature can begin addressing current and future budget problems right away and offering our own ideas. But instead of action, we get a press conference.

“The truth is whatever Gov. Malloy says, time and time again Democrat legislators have always followed. Simply asking the governor to oppose cuts to VoTech schools shows how weak they are. They don’t need to ask the governor for anything, because no matter what Gov. Malloy does or says, it’s up to the legislature to pass a budget. But maybe they’ve forgotten that after so many years of acting in lock-step with the governor.

“I also can’t help but wonder why Representative Aresimowicz and all the Democrats who voted for the current year’s budget were okay cutting VoTech’s by $12.7 million in May, but a few months later they are up in arms trying to show their desire to protect the very schools they cut so deeply from. Clearly, words don’t always match action.”