Rep. O’Dea, House Republicans Unveil 2024 Caucus Proposals Focused on Making CT More Affordable

Posted on February 1, 2024


HARTFORD—House Republicans, in advance of the start of the 2024 legislative session, unveiled proposals Thursday that will maintain the state’s fiscal stability while making Connecticut a more affordable place to live.

Among the proposals is a call to amend the State Constitution to protect the “fiscal guardrails” that have allowed the state to build a solid Rainy Day Fund and begin to pay down long-term debt.

“Maintaining our state’s fiscal health is the legislature’s top priority, and in 2017 we saw a bipartisan commitment to our financial sustainability with the passage of our spending cap, borrowing cap, and volatility cap. These fiscal guardrails are essential to make Connecticut more affordable for residents, yet they face constant pressure from lawmakers in the majority who want to break the caps and spend, spend, spend,” House Republican Deputy Leader Tom O’Dea (R-New Canaan) said. “This showcases the importance of codifying these guardrails in the State Constitution and continue exercising the sensible fiscal restraints which have substantially decreased our deficit.”

O’Dea and Republicans discussed their caucus proposals during a news conference at the Legislative Office Building, where they explained that most conversation ahead of the three-month “short session” has focused on eroding the guardrails to increase spending. Efforts to deliver tax relief, they said, can’t be ignored.

“The relative fiscal stability Connecticut enjoys today is attributable to the strict fiscal controls that were approved and later renewed on a bipartisan basis, and to retreat from them now, as some of our Democratic colleagues would have us do, would indicate a willingness to return to the haphazard budgeting that characterized state government not all that long ago,” said House Republican Leader Vincent Candelora (R-North Branford). “Amending our State’s Constitution to protect our revenue and volatility caps would cement our commitment to a fiscally conservative approach that demands each of us who serve in state government make informed, and sometimes difficult, choices about our budgetary priorities.”

This legislative session House Republicans will again push for the creation of a state child tax deduction of $2,000 per child, a proposal they first offered in their alternative budget proposal last spring that drove discussion about tax relief that was ultimately included in the two-year state budget. Additionally, Republicans want to exempt children’s clothing under $100 from the state’s sales tax all year long.

Other proposals unveiled Thursday include:

  • Reduce the sales tax to 6.35% from 7.75% on motor vehicles valued between $50K and $70k, helping residents adjust to skyrocketing prices
  • Reduce the mandatory paid family leave payroll tax to .4 percent from .5 percent
  • Help small business workers by authorizing establishment of association health care plans

The affordability-focused proposals are part of House Republicans’ “Security and Service” agenda for the 2024 legislative session, which covers a variety of subjects—from community crime to election integrity. View the caucus agenda at

The 2024 legislative session begins Feb. 7.