Malloy focuses on jobs in State of the State - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Malloy focuses on jobs in State of the State

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HARTFORD, Conn. (WFSB/AP) -

Connecticut legislators have returned to Hartford for the opening of this year's legislative session, delayed one day due to Winter Storm Derby.

Gov. Dannel Malloy addressed a joint session of the General Assembly on Thursday at noon and said progress is being made.

The focus of the speech was jobs and the economy. He also unveiled his administration's proposed changes to the second year of the two-year budget, enacted last year.

He said shared sacrifice helped Connecticut turn the corner.

"More than 40,000 new private sector jobs have grown over the past three years, an unemployment rate that has gone from a high of 9.4 percent in 2010 down to 7.4 percent today," Malloy said.

Malloy has already revealed details of his legislative agenda this session, including a call to increase the state's minimum wage to $10.10 by 2017.

"We need more recovery but there is no question we have created traction and thousands of jobs by helping private businesses," said Senate President and democrat Donald Williams.

Republicans said they support some of Malloy's initiatives to stimulate business, but point out that the state has also lost almost as many jobs as it's gained.

"The money the Gov. is talking about was money that was not spent this year, but was borrowed, so it's on the state credit card," said Sen. John McKinney, the senate minority leader.

Malloy also has plans for the projected $505 million surplus from the current fiscal year, which ends June 30. Besides setting aside $250 million for the state's Rainy Day Fund, he's proposed paying down pension debt and providing a sales and gas tax refund.

To read the full text of Malloy's State of the State of the State Address, click here.

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