HARTFORD –State Representative Whit Betts (R-76) today voted for a bipartisan budget that averts Gov. Malloy’s devastating education cuts to cities and towns and installs structural municipal mandate reform that will provide long-term relief sought by local leaders and the taxpayers they serve.
“I strongly believe the strict caps imposed on this and future state budgets are the first step to restoring fiscal stability and predictability by state government. This historic bi-partisan agreement will serve as the guiding philosophy for future budgets, and I now have hope that future deficits forecasted for the next 3 years will dramatically decline. More difficult and painful decisions need to be made but I am convinced the bi-partisan budget approved today will result in supporting the economic growth and prosperity in Bristol and Plymouth,” said Rep. Betts.
Budget highlights include:
-Enacts the constitutional spending cap that was first approved by voters in 1992 -Enacts a $1.9 billion cap on bonding, $500 million less than what was bonded last year -Restores municipal and education funding -Protects core social services -Supports critical funding for seniors and tax cuts on retirees -Imposes a state employee hiring freeze -Requires mandatory votes on union contracts by the legislature -Provides municipal mandate relief and prevailing wage reform, raising the threshold from $400,000 to $1 million -Phases in tax reductions on pensions and social security
The budget also stopped proposals which would have raised taxes on our residents including:
-No sales tax increase -No income tax increase -No tax on cell phones -No restaurant tax -No business tax increase -Does not shift teachers pensions on to municipalities -No tolls The budget passed the Senate by a vote of 33-3 Wednesday evening and by 126-23 in the House of Representatives on Thursday. The budget awaits action from the governor.