Rep. Marilyn Giuliano on the 2011 Budget Adjustment
On the last day of session, May 5th, the General Assembly voted on a budget adjustment plan to close a gaping budget deficit of over $700 million for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2011. Rep. Giuliano and her Republican colleagues proposed their plan as a budget amendment that erases the projected $736 million deficit, includes pro-job initiatives, consolidates agencies, preserves municipal and school aid and contributes to the state employee’s pension fund without raising taxes.
“Our balanced budget plan would preserve municipal and school aid, and set aside $74.5 million to stimulate job growth. Companies that hire the unemployed could earn $17.5 million in tax credits giving an incentive for Connecticut job creation. The plan would establish a $25 million small business revolving loan fund, and eliminates the business entity tax that was originally designed to be temporary,” Rep. Marilyn Giuliano said.
The Republican budget proposal failed along party lines.
The majority party also proposed a budget adjustment plan S.B. 494. This plan came from deal forged between the Democratic leadership of the General Assembly, the Governor’s office and the state employee labor union. This plan ultimately passed 93 to 57 with many Democrats in the House casting a “no” vote alongside their Republican colleagues.
The 2011 budget adjustment plan relies heavily on borrowing and securitization to cover the 2011 deficit. This was over and above the new tax hikes and borrowing originally included when the budget plan was first created and adopted a year ago making it the second time in a row the Democratic majority has chosen to borrow more money instead of implement any significant spending cuts. to As a tool for balancing the state budget, Connecticut residents’ can now expect their monthly electric bills to contribute $141 million annually to the state coffers. The Democrats’ budget adjustment plan also under-funds the state employee pension fund by $200 million.
Next January, the new governor and state legislature will be confronted with a projected $3.2 billion budget hole for the next fiscal year. Rep. Giuliano believes the root cause of this massive projected fiscal hole are an over reliance on federal stimulus money, record borrowing levels and revenue shortfalls due to the poor economy.
“As I said before, raising prices, living costs and piling more taxes on Connecticut families are not the answer we need but unfortunately with the Democrat’s plan that’s what we’ve got. We must create an affordable Connecticut for everyone. Our plan would have accomplished just that while closing the deficit and without raising taxes,” she said.