Expensive Raises for State Lawyers, Former Managers Crowd Out Funding that Could be Used for Nursing Home Caregivers

April 15, 2019

Senate Republican Leader Len Fasano (R-North Haven) released the following statement regarding nursing home workers’ calls for wage increases.

“At a time when Connecticut’s fixed costs are eating away at our discretionary spending, Democrats continue to push for more generous contracts for state employees without realizing that those contracts are actually making it harder for people like the state’s nursing home caregivers to obtain raises. Democrats continue to hurt the good work of SEIU1199 by increasing fixed costs and crowding out funding for all other needs. Democrats are okay paying for state lawyers who are making over $100,000 a year to get 11% raises and stipends of $6,000- $12,000. But they forget that such generosity eats away at funds for all other workers living paycheck to paycheck.

“As nursing home workers call for better wages, Democrats are continuing to approve contracts for a privileged group of state workers, including lawyers and former managers. The state has already approved $11.6 million over the next three years in new benefits for state employees who are new additions to state unions. And the state is on track to approve 13 more of these contracts with another contract scheduled for a vote in committee today. These expensive benefits for a privileged few put a bigger hole in the state budget, and crowd out funding for other needs.

“It is so easy to stand up at a podium and argue everyone deserves raises. But Democrats refuse to acknowledge that the choices they are making are hurting the very people they claim they want to help. Republicans have funded increases for private providers in our proposed budgets year after year. Democrats continue to make promises they cannot afford – thanks to their blind approval of contracts that eat away at the discretionary funding these workers need.”