Giuliano Votes Against Historic Tax Increases
Record Tax Increases in State Budget Proposal
State Representative Marilyn Giuliano voted on Wednesday, May 4th, against a controversial two-year state budget proposal by Governor Malloy and majority Democrats. The proposal increases government spending, hikes taxes and threatens Connecticut’s fragile economic recovery. The proposal also contains a $2 billion hole of assumed union concessions, yet to be agreed upon by state employee unions.
Majority Democrats pushed their $40 billion budget pact with Gov. Dannel Malloy through the House in a 83 to 67 vote with 15 Democrats joining Republicans in voting against the proposal. The Democratic package narrowly passed in the state Senate in a 19 to 17 vote.
Giuliano expressed her deep concern today about the levels of taxation and increased spending in Governor Dannel Malloy’s proposed budget. “The tax hikes begin retroactively and will hit all Connecticut wage earners and homeowners. In this proposal, everything from non-prescription drugs, to valet services, to real-estate transactions will see new taxes. It also eliminates tax-free exemptions for low- cost clothing items and shoes under $50 to name a few. We’re seeing all this without curbing in state spending. In times like these, that’s just irresponsible,” said Giuliano.
The budget also slashes by 40 percent the $500 property tax exemption for Connecticut homeowners. “The quality of everyday life is what’s at stake here. We are being hit with inflation, saddled with debt, the federal government is reaching into our pockets asking for more, energy prices are soaring, gasoline is through the roof, basic items like food costs are up. All of these combined are causing our overall cost of living to skyrocket. This tax package only hurts more. Sadly, it’s our most vulnerable who are on fixed incomes such as Social Security or unemployment that will suffer most,” said Giuliano.
Giuliano was particularly concerned about the controversial tax increase on job providers. “With an unemployment that is higher than the national average at just over 9 percent, this is not the time to tax job providers.”
Prior to the vote, Republican’s offered an alternative “no tax increase” budget on the floor. This proposal rolled back government spending and size to levels in prior budget years and closed the deficit with zero tax increases, fully funding municipal and education aid, and preserving the social safety net for those in need. The Republican proposal spent $900 million less than the plan approved Wednesday by House Democrats.
Among the steps Republicans used for savings in their “no tax increase” budget:
• Enhanced Medicaid fraud detection units will save roughly $224 million in wrongful payments.
• Republicans plan to save more than $46 million through agency consolidations.
• State government will be streamlined through attrition and reduction in the 54,000- state payroll.
• No money will be borrowed for day-to-day state operations.
• More than $200 million in the state’s highest cost debt will be pre-paid, thus allowing for greater flexibility in budgeting throughout state agencies.
(Follow this link to see the roll call vote.)
“The budget vote offered a clear choice. We can either continue the irresponsible tax and spend policies of the past – or we can listen to the people of Connecticut and offer real solutions to governing the state with an eye toward job growth, reducing our debt and making every day living more affordable. I’m proud to be part of the hard work that searched for efficiencies and found a way to balance the budget without any raising taxes, but sorry that budget did not pass,” said Giuliano.