Posted on April 29, 2020 by admin
HARTFORD – House Republicans Leaders today called upon Gov. Lamont to delay nearly $200 million in raises for state employees as Connecticut deals with the deadly virus pandemic that has shredded state revenues and thrown thousands out of work.
The SEBAC agreement calls for pay hikes of $135 million starting July 1, and an additional $60 million for other employees working in higher education. House Republican Leader Themis Klarides and Deputy Leader State Rep. Vincent Candelora wrote to Lamont today asking him to put off the salary increases.
“We are all proud of the work we did in the 2017 bi-partisan budget to create such large budget surpluses that have replenished our Rainy Day Fund to historic levels. Unfortunately, it appears that the impact of this pandemic will require us to exhaust those funds even faster than they accumulated. In other words, while the money in the Rainy Day Fund is extremely helpful during these times, it will not save us from existing underlying state budget problems and the downturn in the economy,’’ they wrote.
They said that the state cannot afford to go forward with the increases and called for immediate discussions with union officials. The Republican leaders said the public will not stand for pay hikes for state employees while others go without paychecks.
“You know all too well the magnitude of business closings and layoffs. Frankly, it would be an insult to those people and their families to allow 4% and 5% pay increases for state employees. There is no rational way to justify such increases,” they wrote.