June 24, 2017

Letter to the Editor: Republican State Rep’s Outline Their Budget Proposal

To the Editor:

On Thursday we joined our Republican colleagues to unveil “Confident Connecticut”, a no-tax-increase solution for the upcoming biennium. In undertaking this difficult task we have proposed true solutions for the budget and are poised to lead Connecticut back to financial stability.

The Republican proposal concentrates on funding the core functions of government while keeping spending in check. It calls for a strict spending cap and a limit on the amount of bonding that can be allocated.

Our proposal restores funding for Fire Training schools, ensuring that firefighters across the state are properly trained to best respond in an emergency situation. Additionally, we provide for Connecticut’s senior population by preserving funding for Meals on Wheels. Further, municipal aid is fully maintained, and in some cases increased.

It is unmistakable that an undue financial burden has been placed on our cities and towns, which has restricted local budgets. Long-term structural changes must be made to the way the legislature goes about the budgeting process to help our municipalities. Consequently, our proposal requires the state to provide municipalities with projected aid by March 1. This will be a critical tool for creating municipal budgets.

Education represents a large portion of the budget, which is why a more equitable formula was used to disperse education dollars. The Republican proposal accepts the responsibility of our teachers’ pensions, saving municipalities from the governor’s proposal that would have levied $400 million from them to fund that account.

It is also important to note that Middlesex Hospital and other hospitals across the state are held harmless from further tax increases in our proposal.

There are painful cuts in our proposal which were difficult to make. As state revenues continue to change we also recognize that some revisions to our proposal will be needed. However, we are ready to work with our colleagues at the Capitol to generate the best budget possible to instill confidence that our residents, business and municipalities deserve.

Sincerely,

Christie Carpino
State Representative, 32nd District

Bob Siegrist
State Representative, 36th District

Melissa Ziobron
State Representative, 34th District

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