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House Republican Priorities Fix State Finances Before Expanding Govt

Posted on January 8, 2019


HARTFORD – House Republicans today challenged Democratic lawmakers to address the state’s continuing fiscal woes and rein in spending before they consider raising taxes on commuters, payrolls, job creators and consumers as a number of leading Democrats have hinted at.

House Republicans said every facet of the state budget must be addressed because of the looming $4 billion deficit Connecticut faces. They said tolls, legalized marijuana, sports betting, hiking the minimum wage and paid family leave – initiatives certain to come up – all pose significant problems as currently contemplated.

“Revenue grabs – whether it is higher tax rates, tolls, sports gambling or recreational marijuana – will not solve our underlying financial problems. They are caused by spiraling personnel costs and the growth of government that we cannot afford,’’ House Republican Leader Themis Klarides said. “Implementing those revenue initiatives outside of the overall budget debate will not work, and we would not support them in that context because there are significant rippling social and fiscal consequences associated with each.’’

Klarides said she is looking forward to working from a clean slate during the legislative session with incoming Governor Lamont and a new legislature. Republicans cited numerous workplace practices and government spending that must be re-set or eliminated before any government service is expanded. The goal is to reduce the costs of government and cut out fraud and waste.