Erases $736 Million 2011 Deficit – No Taxes, Smaller Gov’t -$74 Million to Create Jobs
HARTFORD – Today being Tax Day, April 15th, the last day Connecticut residents have to mail in their tax bills, State Rep. Terrie Wood (Darien and Rowayton) along with the rest of the House Republican caucus unveiled their 2011 budget that erases the $736 million deficit for 2011 without raising taxes by consolidating government agencies, and shrinking the public workforce and commits $74 million to stimulate job growth.
The balanced plan preserves municipal and school aid, and sets aside $74.5 million to stimulate job growth. Companies that hire the unemployed can earn $17.5 million in tax credits, and the plan establishes a $25 million small business revolving loan fund, and eliminates the Business Entity Tax.
“This proposal is fair and balanced. We eliminate the budget gap without raising taxes and without gutting social service programs. Every household in Connecticut has faced these choices and has made the difficult decisions we are confronting today,’’ said Rep. Terrie Wood, member of the Appropriations Committee.
The Common Sense plan offers a flexible menu of choices to create savings from concessions that have all been validated by the non-partisan Office of Fiscal Analysis.
The hallmarks of the savings:
- $58 million in line item cuts to 2009 levels;
- $64 million in early retirement for state workers;
- $10 million in state agency consolidations;
- $6.4 million to shed state office leases;
- $20 million in privatization of state functions;
- $150 million in state worker concessions, including wage freezes, furlough days and health care;
- $3.8 million in legislative pay cuts, elimination of franked mail and travel.
The budget also makes significant investments in job creation and retirement security:
- $200 million will be paid into the state employee pensions;
- The Business Entity Tax is eliminated to save companies $32 million;
- A Small Business Revolving Loan Fund of $25 million is created;
- Tax credits of up to $17.5 million will be available to companies that hire off unemployment rolls.
Rep. Terrie Wood added, “This Common Sense plan achieves the common sense ideals we have advocated for since the beginning of the year. The mantras of “Not spending more than you have” and “only borrowing what you can afford to pay back” need to be set in stone when comes to crafting a budget.”