September 20, 2017

Senator Larson and East Hartford Legislators Denounce Short-Sighted Republican Budget

“The Republican budget that recently passed the General Assembly is devastating for both the state of Connecticut and East Hartford residents. We want to move our state forward, but it is clear that this proposal leaves many Connecticut residents behind.

“This has frequently been referred to as a no-tax increase budget—this is dishonest. According to the nonpartisan Office of Fiscal Analysis, it contains $840 million in tax increases over two years. The proposal drastically slashes the earned income tax credit, increasing taxes for many working families.

“East Hartford’s students would be the hardest hit. It seems Republicans are taking a page from the Betsy DeVos playbook, slamming our schools while shifting money to wealthier communities. This proposal cuts or eliminates programs that provide funding to higher-need school districts such as East Hartford, including the Commissioner’s Network grants, Alliance District funding, and Priority School District grants. It eliminates funding for the K-3 Literacy Initiative that Langford and Norris Elementary Schools participate in—one of Connecticut’s most effective literacy programs to date.

“Despite repeated calls on both sides of the aisle to make our state more attractive to young people, the proposal inexplicably attacks higher education. Combined cuts of $309 million to UConn and UConn Health would force the closure of regional campuses and potentially the Health Center. Surging tuition costs would put a UConn education out of reach for many students.

“The Governor has promised to veto the Republican proposal, giving the legislature an opportunity to renegotiate a truly bipartisan budget that treats all of our towns and residents fairly. We remain committed to reaching a balanced budget agreement that puts Connecticut on a path to fiscal stability.”

State Sen. Tim Larson, State Reps. Henry Genga, Jason Rojas, and Jeff Currey