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Malloy Makes Fourth Attempt At State Budget

Jessica Hill
Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy delivers his budget address to members of the house and senate inside the Hall of the House at the state Capitol in Hartford, Conn., in February.

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy has released a fourth version of his state budget proposal as Connecticut remains the only state without a budget, three months into its fiscal year.

Malloy says Connecticut’s Republican and Democratic legislative leaders are taking too long to reach a bipartisan agreement following his veto of the Republican-backed budget that passed three weeks ago. Malloy says that’s why he’s putting out his revised budget. He says it’s a lean, no frills, no-nonsense budget.

“By putting out these ideas and showing that there is room for significant compromise, I hope that this proposal can serve as a catalyst for more productive discussions. It is my sincere hope that this proposal will help the General Assembly pass a budget that I can sign into law.”

Malloy's new two-year, $41 billion plan reduces spending by about $150 million. It eliminates some unpopular tax increases included in an earlier compromise budget he reached with fellow Democrats. That one had a proposed state property tax on seasonal homes, a 25 cent fee on ride-hailing services and a cellphone surcharge. Malloy’s latest version also updates the formula for distributing state education funding to schools.

Legislative leaders, including House Minority leader, Themis Klarides, a Derby Republican, say they’ll look at Malloy’s proposal but will remain focused on their own budget negotiations.

“Four caucuses are sitting in that room day after day and making progress towards getting a budget together. And we are going to continue to do so. The governor will be brought into this process when we all believe it’s the most efficient time for him to be brought in. And that’s not right now.”

Lawmakers say they hope to reach a bipartisan agreement that the General Assembly could vote on next week.

In the meantime, Malloy remains in charge of state spending under his limited executive authority. This has led to reduced funding for social service programs and an expected $140 million cut to state funding for local school districts this month.

As WSHU Public Radio’s award-winning senior political reporter, Ebong Udoma draws on his extensive tenure to delve deep into state politics during a major election year.
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