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EXCLUSIVE…Simmons on CT’s Budget: “Whole Deck of Cards is Beginning to Collapse”

April 11, 2017 By Staff
EXCLUSIVE…Simmons on CT’s Budget: “Whole Deck of Cards is Beginning to Collapse”

Reclaim Connecticut sat down with former congressman and current first selectman of Stonington, Rob Simmons, and discussed politics and policy.

“This whole deck of cards is beginning to collapse.”

That was the assessment of Connecticut’s budget from First Selectman Rob Simmons (R-Stonington), a former congressman for the state’s 2nd Congressional District, in an interview conducted in shoreline Stonington last week.

MALLOY’S BUDGET

“As somebody who sits in a municipal office, as a municipal chief executive officer, the biggest thing I’m confronted with is the governor’s budget,” Simmons said.

The budget “dramatically burdens 138 of our 169 towns, [which] is a huge problem,” Simmons said. “When the governor proposes that the town of Stonington lose 89 percent of its municipal aid … how are we going to deal with that?”

Simmons represented a bloc of towns and cities in eastern Connecticut for six years as a member of Congress. He also chaired the Yankee Institute, a Connecticut-based think tank, before stepping down from Yankee to serve as leader of the small town of Stonington.

But the problems the budget of Gov. Dan Malloy (D-Conn.) causes for towns is not unique to Stonington, according to Simmons.

“This is creating a huge problem to most of the towns in the state of Connecticut,” the first selectman said. “We can’t do our budget knowing what the state budget is gonna be, makes it even worse. How can we set a mill rate if we don’t know what our state aid is gonna be?”

STATEWIDE RUN

Reclaim Connecticut also asked Simmons about rumors he may pursue a statewide run for office.

“I just love being the first selectman of the town of Stonington,” Simmons said. “‘Cause if there’s a pothole I’m gonna fill it.”

Simmons went on: “There are too many potholes … bigger than potholes, they’re sinkholes in the state of Connecticut.”