Lawmakers still haven't decided on budget - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Lawmakers still haven't decided on budget

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Lawmakers have yet to agree on a state budget. (WFSB file photo) Lawmakers have yet to agree on a state budget. (WFSB file photo)
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB/AP) -

Democratic leaders said they have a revised two-year state budget that they think will pass later this month.

The Democratic leaders are hoping to vote on their revised budget on July 18.

The Democratic budget restores property tax credit, includes no new taxes on hospitals, $36M reductions of tax expenditures and credits and increases sales tax to 6.99% to help maintain funding for cities and towns. 

Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has urged leaders of the House of Representatives to pass the stop-gap plan he offered earlier this week. He insists it will be less draconian than having him run state government using his limited executive authority.

Malloy said he sent Aresimowicz a letter to urge him to pass the 3-month budget, which was unveiled on Monday.

While Democratic Senate leaders previously said they are willing to vote on Malloy's mini-budget, Aresimowicz says he prefers a bipartisan short-term budget, so long as it leads to a full two-year budget.

"The mini-budget was a bad idea - it adds to the instability and doesn't provide a deadline," Aresimowicz said.

Aresimowicz had said he was "99 percent" certain there wouldn't be a vote Thursday. It's unclear if they can pass something Friday.

Malloy said Aresimowicz was "right."  

"His position is not only reasonable, it's clearly in the best interest of our constituents. Minority leader Themis Klarides should not hold up a vote on a temporary budget solution that will allow us to maintain rental assistance for families and to restore partial funding for summer youth jobs programs. She should not obstruct efforts to better fund towns, hospitals, and nonprofits in the short term while we work to finalize a full biennial budget. House Republicans should agree to call the bill without amendment and with limited debate. It's time to put politics aside and do what is responsible," Malloy said in a statement on Thursday.

Republicans have been urging lawmakers to return to the capital and do what they're supposed to do, which is pass a budget.

Democrats and republican leaders in the senate agree the mini budget might be the best temporary solution.

"As far as the three-month budget, we are not totally excited about it but given the alternative to the governor’s executive orders,” said Republican State Senator Len Fasano.

The house speaker is under a lot of heat. The single most important goal of the legislature is to adopt a state budget, but months were spent debating recreational marijuana and other ideas, even though they had little chance of passing.

The speaker says he wants lawmakers to come back and vote on his budget on July 18th.

In the meantime, the governor is prepared to sign an executive order, a bare bones plan that makes drastic cuts to social services as well as cities and towns.

"Things have to change. I don't think there is an understanding amongst republicans and democrats in the house that things have to change,” Malloy said.

He added that he will not support a budget that raises taxes and the house democrats budget does that with the sales tax.

It’s unclear what it going to happen on Friday. If no budget, the governor's executive order takes effect and non-profits are already saying the cuts to the neediest will be severe.

Copyright 2017 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.