Republican Proposals Become Foundation of Compromise Budget Passed in Session’s Final Hours

May 10, 2018

No Tax Increases and Republican Prioritize Progress Transportation Plan Enacted

Hartford – State Sen. Toni Boucher (R-26) today announced passage of revisions to the state budget that fulfill her promise to prevent fare hikes and service reductions for commuters, and fully finances the Special Transportation without tax increases or tolls.

Sen. Boucher voted to approve the legislation that is the result of bipartisan negotiations and represents a compromise between Republican and Democrat lawmakers to update the bipartisan state budget that passed last year.

“The state is finally moving forward with our transportation priorities without another hike in fares or reduction of services for the many commuters who depend on bus and rail service to get to work every day,” Sen. Boucher said. “We also eliminate the projected insolvency of the Special Transportation Fund and, in fact, create surpluses in the fund over the next five years.”

The funding and surpluses in the Special Transportation are accomplished by accelerating the transfer of sales tax collected on motor vehicle purchases at car dealerships in 2019 to eight percent. It also enacts part of Republicans’ Prioritize Progress long-term infrastructure improvement plan.

Sen. Boucher said the legislation passed is essentially a stopgap budget that provides a temporary fix to the state’s current fiscal needs without address the long-term financial stability of the state. However, she said she supported it because it contains important Republican priorities like the restoration of municipal aid and education cost sharing dollars without implementing tax increases.

“Last week, Republicans presented a detailed, responsible balanced budget that was fully vetted. I had hoped to see that budget come for a vote, but am satisfied that it became the foundation for a compromise budget,” she said. “Balancing the budget without tax increases was non-negotiable for me and I am proud that we stood our ground on this issue. This budget shows that we can fund Connecticut’s most crucial programs without asking taxpayers for more money. I believe a Republican majority in the House and Senate will enable us to improve on the accomplishments of this year’s budget during the next legislative session.”

Highlights of the budget include:

  • Full funding of Special Transportation fund eliminating rail and bus fare increases and service cuts
  • Restores full funding for Municipal Aid
  • Fully funds the FY 2019 enacted Education Cost Sharing grants.
  • Maintains new retiree tax breaks for pension & social security income.
  • Restores full funding for the Medicare Savings
  • Provides $5 million for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Emergency Placements for those with
  • Maintains $7 million savings target for a hard hiring freeze.
  • Provides $16 million to the Retired Teachers’ Healthcare Fund to provide a full statutory contribution of 33%.

Full Budget Summary Attached

2018-2019 General Assembly Budget Summary