Posted on April 7, 2021
Rep. Rutigliano Promotes Small Business Relief
Working to Stop a Massive Financial Hit
TRUMBULL- State Rep. David Rutigliano (R-123) along with his House colleagues joined Connecticut small business leaders today in calling on the State Legislature to address the state’s unemployment trust fund debt crisis.
The state borrowed about $700 million from the federal government to cover pandemic-driven unemployment compensation benefit claims after the unemployment trust fund became insolvent. The total borrowing for to cover the Fund is projected to exceed $1 billion.
“We are at a crucial junction; the state needs to use some of the federal American Rescue Plan Act funds to address that massive debt and avoid broad tax hikes on struggling small businesses. Many small businesses cannot absorb another financial hit and continue to keep their doors open and employees employed,” said Rep. Rep. Rutigliano. “We must think about the long-term health of job creators. This fund is crucial to employees who need it, long after the Covid pandemic is over, Connecticut employers could be forced to repay this massive debt, that was incurred through no fault of their own.”
For context, to date twenty-four (24) states have used portions of their federal coronavirus relief funds to either help pay for unemployment benefits or pay down the principal on their federal loans.
According to the Connecticut Business and Industry Association, Connecticut cannot afford to repeat what happened after 2008-2010 recession, when state borrowed over $1 billion from the federal government and was one of the last states to repay the federal government.
The National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) said this impacts every job creator in Connecticut.
Rep. Rutigliano added, “Now is not the time to put this burden on small business, we must keep in mind that the state has recovered only 58% of the 292,400 jobs lost last March and April to COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions.”