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CT Dem Leaders Try to Bully Others Into Sales Tax Hike

August 31, 2017 By Staff
CT Dem Leaders Try to Bully Others Into Sales Tax Hike

As the budget impasse in Connecticut approaches month three, Democrats in the legislature are saying it's their way or the highway.

If you vote no, “you are going to be just as responsible as everybody else for the cuts that go to your town.”

If “you really want to be a representative of your town,” you’ll vote yes.

That was the gist of House Majority Leader Matt Ritter’s (D-Hartford) message on the budget to Democratic and Republican legislators on Wednesday, according to reporting from CTNewsJunkie.

Ritter and House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz (D-Berlin) are planning a budget vote for sometime in September, but they’re insisting that it’s their proposal or Governor Malloy’s (D-Conn.) executive order. Republican budgets won’t be considered, even though House and Senate Republicans have offered multiple proposals with no significant tax hikes and restoration of cuts to local aid.

Reclaim Connecticut summed up the House Democrats’ proposal last week.

It:

  • Raises the sales tax a half-percent, from 6.35 percent to 6.85 percent
  • Restricts a current property tax credit for only “households with dependents”
  • Lets towns raise taxes on local restaurants

And, as Republicans have noted, it incorporates savings from Malloy’s deal with the State Employee Bargaining Agent Coalition (SEBAC), which trades a few years of minor cuts for five more years of generous state employee benefits.

Neither of Ritter’s proposed options seem good for Connecticut at this time. Option 1, House Democrats’ budget, raises taxes while failing to address systemic spending issues in the state. Option 2, Malloy’s executive order, contains devastating cuts to towns that will force some to raise property taxes.