Malloy pledges to fix multi-million dollar state budget deficit
By WFSB Staff
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -
The taxes for Connecticut residents were not enough to cover a growing budget deficit of $365 million, and now Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has some choices: cut spending or raise taxes, again.
However, Malloy said Friday that he is not planning to raise taxes and he will cut spending to reduce the deficit.
Some people feel this decision is only a Band-Aid because the deficit could be even higher next year.
On Thursday, Malloy tried to put a positive spin on the state's budget deficit by saying the current amount is a far cry from the $3.5 billion gap that he inherited two years ago.
"Today [Thursday], 22 months later our current budget short fall of $365 million is one-tenth of what it was," he told reporters.
Malloy raised taxes and cut spending by making government smaller and leaner, but the state's unemployment rate, which is just under 9 percent, continues to be high.
With so many people out of work, there are more Medicaid claims and that, according to the governor, is a big part of the problem.
"We have a shortfall in the current budget," Malloy said. "We will come forward with a plan in a relatively short period of time."
However, Connecticut residents want to know if there is a difference between a deficit and a shortfall.
"No, it's a political euphemism," said David Cadden, who teaches entrepreneurship at Quinnipiac University. "It's like saying an execution is a health alteration action."
Cadden said he feels Malloy has taken great steps forward, but the huge debt and the lack of jobs continue to plague the state.
On Thursday, a Hartford-based research group that provides financial information to credit agencies said Connecticut ranks dead last among 50 states.
"What needs to occur is the emphasis has to be on job creation," Cadden said.
Malloy said he is asking all state agencies to make cuts of 5 percent. He will submit a deficit reduction plan next month, but at the same time, a budget deficit of $1 billion is projected for next year.
Copyright 2012 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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