Sen. Somers votes “yes” on 1st CT income tax cuts in three decades; Largest relief in CT history

June 6, 2023

For Immediate Release

Sen. Somers backs CT budget with historic middle class tax cuts

Bipartisan plan adheres to fiscal guardrails, funds safety net services

Sen. Heather Somers (R-Groton) today voted in favor of a balanced budget bill that provides the largest personal income tax relief in state history, funds safety net services and abides by the state’s bipartisan fiscal guardrails.

“While I would have preferred more tax relief, this budget offers plenty of positives for the residents of eastern Connecticut,” Sen. Somers said. “It provides the first state income tax cuts in three decades, and those tax cuts will ease burdens for working and middle class families.  That income tax relief was a priority for Connecticut Republicans.

“The budget maintains the bipartisan spending caps and budgetary guardrails that Republicans pushed to implement back in 2017.  Those limitations on our government spending have helped create our current surplus, improve our credit rating and reduce debt. Spending discipline has led us to a point where we are cutting people’s taxes, and if we stay disciplined and keep our spending in check, we can reduce taxes even further in the future while focusing on key areas of need, like our non-profit human services providers.”

On May 10, Sen. Somers and Senate Republicans proposed a “$1.5 Billion Back” state budget plan which represented the largest income tax and property tax cuts in state history.

The budget bill Sen. Somers voted in favor of:

  • Deposits $3.3 billion into the state’s Rainy Day Fund
  • Is under the constitutional spending cap in both years – following the financial guardrails that were reauthorized at the beginning of the 2023 legislative session
  • Allows the state to repay an additional $2.072 billion in unfunded pension liability
  • Pays off outstanding debt from 2008, which will save future taxpayers $22 million
  • Includes the largest Personal Income Tax Cut in state history
  • Eliminates even more retirement income taxes by smoothing the benefit cliff for those with pension, annuity, and IRA income
  • Freezes scheduled increases on the diesel tax
  • Continues last year’s tax cuts
    • the Earned Income Tax Credit is now at its highest historic level – helping Connecticut’s lowest-earning workers and families
    • combined with personal income tax cuts, families of four with incomes up to $50,000 will not pay state income taxes
    • continues the car tax cap (32.4 mills)
    • continues property tax credits for homeowners
  • Makes additional investments in state colleges and universities
  • Increases funding for special education
  • Increases childcare provider rates
  • Invests over $240 million in public education for the 2024-25 school year:
  • Provides funding to nonprofit human services providers:  2.5% cost of living increases

The governor has pledged to sign the bill into law.

*Sen. Somers represents Griswold, Groton, North Stonington, Plainfield, Preston, Sterling, Stonington and Voluntown.