GOP targets record-setting tax cuts

May 24, 2023


(Waterbury Republican American op-ed, 5/24/23)


Have you heard the good news, Republican- American readers? (“Large cut likely for taxpayers in state,” May 11) At the state Capitol, the current debate is no longer focused on tax increases, fees and other assorted “revenue enhancements,” which for so many years put a bull’s-eye on the wallets of Connecticut’s middleclass and working-class families.

Thanks to Republicans’ efforts, this year’s discussion is centered on passing potential record-setting tax cuts, abiding by smart budgetary guardrails and making responsible investments to help our most vulnerable residents.

On May 10, I joined my fellow Senate Republicans on the front lawn of the state Capitol to unveil a budget alternative that stays under the spending cap; spends less than any other budget proposal at the Capitol; continues the full phase-in of local education funding; fully funds aid to cities and towns for special-education excess costs; and provides the largest proposed increase in funding to nonprofit health and human services providers.

As ranking senator on the Education and Appropriations committees, I am proud of the Senate Republicans’ “$1.5 Billion Back Budget” proposal. We made some small and commonsense spending reductions, such as filling open positions based on historical hiring trends and requiring state agencies to live within their budgets.

And while it spends less than any other budget alternative out there, our plan also makes critical investments in key areas like education and special education, health care, and services to those with disabilities.

Our plan is gimmick-free. It provides the largest income-tax cut and property-tax cuts in Connecticut history, while paying down our long-term debt by more than $2 billion. It represents real, broad-based relief that you will notice when you see your paycheck, or file your taxes, or open your electric bill.

For example, under our plan, a single mother with two children making $80,000 saves $775 each year; a family of four making $125,000 saves $1,045 each year; a single parent with one child making $30,000 saves $515; and a couple making $70,000 with an additional $30,000 in pension income saves $2,085.

If this plan sounds appealing to you, please pick up the phone and call your state lawmakers today. Tell them to pass the Senate Republicans’ “$1.5 Billion Back Budget” proposal. Your voices can help us keep the debate focused on significant tax cuts and responsible spending. For details, visit

*Sen. Eric C. Berthel, R-Watertown, represents the 32nd Senate District.