Connecticut lawmakers pass budget, but
governor may veto
Send a link to a friend
[September 18, 2017]
By Hilary Russ
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Connecticut lawmakers
passed a $40.7 billion two-year state budget early on Saturday, but
Governor Dannel Malloy could veto the legislation and leave the state
racing toward severe spending cuts next month.
It was a surprise that the Republican-backed budget won over the
legislature, which is narrowly controlled by Democrats. Malloy, a
Democrat, said he would veto the bills as they first passed through the
Senate before moving to the House of Representatives.
"The amended budget that passed in the Senate today is unbalanced, and
if it were to reach my desk I would veto it," Malloy said in a statement
He said the budget "relies on too many unrealistic savings, it contains
immense cuts to higher education, and it would violate existing state
contracts with our employees, resulting in costly legal battles for
years to come."
Connecticut's bi-ennial budget is more than two months late. When
lawmakers failed to pass it by June 30, Malloy took emergency control of
Under his executive order, some schools and cities would see state aid
slashed after Oct. 1 unless a budget is enacted before then.
One of the wealthiest state's in the nation, Connecticut is hampered by
$73 billion of pension and debt obligations, high taxes, outmigration
and falling revenues.
Malloy is one of the most unpopular governors in the country and is not
seeking a third term.
Democrats said on Thursday they had enough votes to pass a budget Malloy
would sign, but that deal fell apart.
The budget now before Malloy contains some items he says he cannot
stomach, including reductions to the University of Connecticut.
[to top of second column]
Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy speaks at the Democratic National
Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S. July 25, 2016.
General fund appropriations would grow 3.5 percent in fiscal 2018 to
$18.5 billion and 0.6 percent in fiscal 2019 to $18.6 billion.
The transportation fund, the next largest, would grow by about 11
percent over the two years, according to the legislature's Office of
Fiscal Analysis (OFA).
The bill would also limit general obligation bond allocations to $2
billion a year beginning in fiscal 2018, then apply that same cap to
issuances and spending starting in fiscal 2019, the OFA said.
It would establish a Municipal Accountability Review Board to allow
state oversight of fiscally troubled cities, potentially including
its capital city Hartford.
Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin has said the city could soon file for
bankruptcy if it does not receive roughly $45 million of state aid.
(Reporting by Hilary Russ, Editing by Franklin Paul)
[© 2017 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2017 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.