HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) – Governor Ned Lamont’s budget it out and it has a lot of people talking.
The two-year, $46 billion budget does not include broad based taxes, but it does call for fees on certain trucks.
Educators feel it falls short of what’s needed during this pandemic.
Budgets have a lot in them and there are always people are who pleased and those who are not.
In this case, everyone seems to be happy there are no major tax increased, but there are plenty of other things people are against, mainly a trucking fee.
Lamont has proposed a balance budget during challenging times.
“My budget achieves this without broad-based tax increases, reducing municipal aid, or cutting any existing services,” Lamont said.
There’s a lot in his two-year budget. He doesn’t support broad-based tax hikes, which progressive Democrats were seeking to reform property taxes.
Distressed cities and towns with exempt properties will get an additional $100 million and no cuts in education.
Lamont also wants to fix transportation and to do that, he’s proposing a mileage-based user fee on tractor trailers.
“You are taking all of these taxes that are already passed on the Connecticut consumers, they are going to keep getting passed down to Connecticut. The people of Connecticut are truly going to be paying them,” said Katie Childs, Tuxis Ohrs Fuel.
The vice-president of a Meriden based fuel supplies says an additional tax could cost the company close to half a million dollars per year.
“There’s no way to know if the taxes we already pay are enough to fix our roads because they are used to balance the budget in our ways,” Childs said.
To balance the budget, Lamont is counting on federal money and some of the state’s rainy-day fund.
Education has been hard hit during COVID and while there are no cuts in funding, educators say they need more resources.
“Given the ongoing needs and the extraordinary situation in education during the pandemic, yes,” said Patrice McCarthy, Connecticut Association of Boards of Education.
The state needs revenue, and Lamont is also counting on recreational marijuana and legalized sports betting. The tribes may be close to an agreement.
“We are all pushing in the same direction. We are going to punch it in, and we are going to get it down this session, I believe that,” said Rodney Butler, Mashantucket Pequot.
Lamont seems to have abandoned his push for tolls, favoring a truck fee instead, which could bring in $80 million a year.
Some business leaders are praising the governor for backing away from major tax increases.