HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — More state spending cuts are expected to be coming within the next two weeks as state government adjusts to a massive slide in tax revenue. Wednesday, the Governor made between $65 and $75 million in cuts. Now, legislative leaders are promising more budget chopping before the end of the month.
“We got to do this,” said the Governor Thursday, “Can’t spend money you don’t have. We’re not going to raise taxes so hard decisions have to be made.” While touring the community gardens at the ‘Knox Foundation’ Thursday, the Governor said that Democratic leaders of the Assembly have assured him there will be a budget cutting plan for the current budget year on his desk within the next two weeks that will eliminate much more state spending than he announced late yesterday adding, “We’re not doing this with a butcher knife, we’re doing it as carefully as we can looking at all factors.”
Legislators must cut over $200 million from the current budget year spending plan. That’s the budget year that ends in about 100 days so there is quite a bit of urgency. That would only make a small dent in the red ink problem that starts on July 1. Republicans think the plan should be on the books sooner. “We can’t continue to drag our feet any longer. We need to tackle this right away,” said State Sen. Rob Kane (R-Watertown) the Deputy Minority Leader.
The Speaker of the House, Rep. Brendan Sharkey (D-Hamden) has joined the Republicans in saying that all parts of the government from the State Capitol to the city and town halls will have to tighten their belts and and look for ways to deliver services in more efficient ways, “Demanding of our state agencies and from our towns and cities and our boards of education, efficiencies in how they operate. It’s a whole new day.”
But the Speaker of the House says no matter how many spending cuts the final plan has city residents will still be getting that promised reduction in the ‘Car Tax’ starting this July. He says that’s a promise that the Democrats absolutely will not break.
While everyone hates spending cuts, nobody doesn’t like a tax cut and Democrats in the cities are planning on that tax cut to help them win elections this fall.