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State Senator

Will Haskell

Representing Bethel, New Canaan, Redding, Ridgefield, Weston, Westport, Wilton

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Senator Haskell Votes For Bipartisan Bill To Help Federal Employees During President Trump’s Government Shutdown

HARTFORD – State Senator Will Haskell (D-Westport) and the Connecticut State Senate voted today on an overwhelming and bipartisan basis to financially help the estimated 1,500 federal employees who live and work in Connecticut but who have been furloughed without pay due to President Donald Trump’s ongoing federal government shutdown.

The Senate voted 32-1 in favor of House Bill 5765, “AN ACT ESTABLISHING THE FEDERAL SHUTDOWN AFFECTED EMPLOYEES LOAN PROGRAM AND PROVIDING ADDITIONAL ASSISTANCE TO FEDERAL EMPLOYEES.”

This bill was sponsored by all six legislative leaders from both the Democratic and Republican caucuses, and was crafted with the input and endorsement of Governor Ned Lamont and the Connecticut Bankers Association.

“I’m thrilled to cast my first vote for such a bipartisan, common sense and compassionate bill,” Sen. Haskell said. “Right now, federal employees and their families are being treated like political bargaining chips. I’m proud to live in a state where workers are treated fairly. Our state government is stepping up to the plate to make sure that those who have dedicated their lives to public service can feed their families and keep their homes warm.

The bill – which became effective immediately upon Governor Ned Lamont’s signature – affects approximately 1,500 federal furloughed employees, non-furloughed employees, and furloughed employees who have been called back to work..

The new program calls for the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority (CHFA) to guarantees loans to eligible employees from private banks. The loans are equal to $5,000 or the regular monthly take-home pay of an employee (whichever is lower), minus any unemployment the employee may be receiving.

Eligible employees may receive up to three loans, one for each 30 day period of the shutdown. Loans are interest-free for 270 days after the shutdown, and the loans must be repaid within 270 days of the end of the federal shutdown in three to six installment payments.

The State of Connecticut is guaranteeing just 10% of the aggregate amount loaned.

The bill also allows (but does not require) municipalities and/or special taxing districts to offer local tax deferment programs and/or water/sewer payment deferments to federal employees affected by the shutdown.

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