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Rep. Smith Urges Action on Resolving State Budget Crisis

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Encourages Democratic Colleagues to Consider Republican Proposal

HARTFORD State Representative Richard Smith (R-108) joined the House Republican caucus in calling for an up-or-down vote Thursday in the House on the balanced, no-tax increase budget proposed by Republicans – the third version produced by the caucus – noting the Democrats failed to produce a single complete proposal.

“This is truly unprecedented,” said Rep. Smith. “As I have mentioned, the legislature’s only obligation this year was to pass a two-year budget. It is the first time in recent history that there will not be a state budget before the end of the fiscal year because of an abject failure of the majority party to even produce a comprehensive budget package – let alone call one for a vote. Democrats control both the Senate and the House, yet they are unwilling to make the necessary changes to turn this state around. Republicans are asking our local Democratic colleagues to join us in supporting a budget that will start that process.”

Legislative Republicans proposed a full balanced budget this spring and then revised that proposal last month to account for a dramatic drop in revenue receipts. Democrats did not even produce a plan by the time the legislative committees reached their deadlines later in the spring and still refuse to call the Republican budget for a vote.  If no budget is passed by the end of the fiscal year on June 30th, the governor will run the state on a series of continuing resolutions.

Smith considered this prospect distressing and warned that a prolonged budget struggle will result in huge problems for towns and cities that count on state revenue to help run local government. Those most at risk and in need of social services will also be affected.

“It is unacceptable for Democratic leadership to abandon their responsibilities by refusing to act,” said Rep. Smith.  “The Democrats need to face the true economic realities of Connecticut and call a responsible budget for a vote.”