We Make Connecticut Happen

Budget & Action Update: We Need Shared Prosperity


May 20, 2017: The governor and lawmakers from both parties this past week released three separate proposals for narrowing wider state budget gaps anticipated in the next two fiscal years.

These political leaders once again failed to offer long-term solutions that would grow the economy or commonsense strategies to stop endless cycles of deficits. Instead, their latest proposals rely heavily on austerity policies that would unfairly balance the budget on the backs of working families.

Click here for a side-by-side comparison of the proposals.

The proposals released May 16 by legislative Republicans include particularly egregious examples of fiscal policies that prioritize the interests of Wall Street over the middle class. Significantly, they demanded considerably more in labor cost savings from state employees and their families — more than $2.2 billion over the biennium — than the governor previously suggested.

The budget proposals would also do great harm to our cities and towns. Deep municipal budget cuts will lead to sharp property tax hikes and the likelihood that local jobs and services will get slashed.

Click here to read the article about the Republican budget proposal.

The dueling budget came days after the initial round of layoffs that included more than 70 Council 4 members. Governor Dannel P. Malloy announced the job cuts in late April — despite ongoing efforts to urge better choices than slashing vital services or the workforce that delivers them. Malloy's original budget calls for more than 4,000 layoffs absent state employee concessions.

Since then his administration's budget officials have warned of worsening deficits, adding urgency to a deepening crisis. That's why the state union coalition has been engaged in discussions with the Malloy administration to find mutually agreeable solutions to protect public services.

The plans released last week reinforce the need for a growing economy that works for all working people, not just CEOs and hedge fund managers. 

The right response to all three proposals is to demand a "fair share" state budget, not more of the same failed austerity policies that further threaten Connecticut's quality of life.

Click here to send a message to your legislators demanding they take a more balanced approach.

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