'Crisis pregnancy center' ruling spurs call for legislation


It took the Connecticut Senate just about two minutes to make some fixes to the recently passed bipartisan budget.

The Senate voted 34-0 on Tuesday in favor of Senate Bill 1503, which, among other things, makes various changes to a tax on hospitals that provides the state and hospitals with key federal reimbursement funds.

Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy had urged the fix, arguing the original language risked up to $1 billion in federal revenue the state is expecting.

The bill also fixes language that held up $26.4 million in financial assistance for certain elderly and disabled renters and changes the years when some tax changes will take effect.

Malloy’s Director of Communications Kelly Donnelly said they are "grateful that legislative leadership came to recognize the need to fix the language for implementing the hospital supplemental payments and provider tax" in the bill.

The adopted language was fundamentally flawed and violated federal law, and the action by the Senate today makes the law workable," Donnelly said in a statement on Tuesday. “It’s important to keep in mind that there are no guarantees when it comes to approval from the federal CMS agency. In addition, our state still some issues left unresolved in this arena, such as the tax on the ambulatory surgery centers, that we’ll need to work on cooperatively moving forward."

The house is expected to meet on Wednesday to vote on the changes to the two-year, $41.3 billion budget.

“Having said that, today’s action was positive and we appreciate it. We are eager for the House to take up this item tomorrow so that the administration can proceed without delay in our amended submission to CMS," Donnelly said.

To read the full bill, click here.

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Copyright 2016 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.