On Monday, Gov. Dannel Malloy made a stop in Ansonia, a city that could be forced to make drastic cuts if his education funding plan isn't passed.
Ansonia Mayor David Cassetti said for years his city has been getting shorted when it comes to education funding.
"These are small communities asked to do a lot and quite frankly the state needs to do more to be of assistance,” Malloy said.
One of the bigger issues is Education Cost Sharing, which is something the governor said needs to be not just more transparent, but also more fair.
"We were paying for students in towns that were no longer in the school district and we weren't reimbursing towns that had seen increases,” Malloy said.
It is why in his budget, the governor has suggested providing more education funding to mainly poorer, urban districts, at the expense of wealthier districts.
"There are about 30 communities that need this assistance. Those 30 communities out of 169, represent 46 percent of our population, represent the larger share of student population,” Malloy said.
In Ansonia, the mayor said they would be in line to get more than $3 million extra under the governor's proposal, meaning the city wouldn't have to decide between school funding and general city services, like the library.
Cassetti said without the education funding proposal in the governor’s budget, the library could be a thing of the past, offering his own worst case scenario budget, which would provide a number of painful cuts, including eliminating full time staff at the library and cutting its hours to just a few days a week.
"We get 70 percent, we've been shortchanged, all these years. When I saw his budget come out, I said we need to get him down here, because I’m with him on this,” Cassetti said.
With so many cities and towns depending on the state's budget, waiting to see just how much money they'll get, the governor reached out to the Conference of Cities and Municipalities, asking them to allow cities and towns an extension on to when they need to have their budgets done.
That is something republican lawmakers are not in favor of. They said, let’s get to work.
As for the state budget, lawmakers say the next big date should be in April, when they start getting feedback and reports from committees on how they'd shape it.
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