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Malloy Announces Proposal Allowing State Intervention into Struggling Cities

February 2, 2017 By Staff
Malloy Announces Proposal Allowing State Intervention into Struggling Cities

Gov. Dan Malloy (D-Conn.) rolled out his proposal, which would create a board that intervenes in certain town and city budgets, in Waterbury on Thursday.

On Thursday, Gov. Dan Malloy (D-Conn.) introduced his proposal for a Municipal Accountability Review Board (MARB) to intervene in the budgets of struggling towns and cities.

“I am proposing the establishment of a statewide Municipal Accountability Review Board to provide support and technical assistance – and interventions – to municipalities that are at risk or in financial distress,” Malloy said.

Watch his announcement below:

Malloy noted that Bridgeport, West Haven, Jewitt City, and Waterbury “have had this [review] before,” and “Hartford has previously requested such support.” Mayor Luke Bronin (D-Hartford) has suggested that Hartford is in such dire fiscal straits that bankruptcy is an option.

Towns and cities in distress would be categorized by tier, with Tier 1 indicating low or no distress, and Tiers 2 and 3 enabling the state to impose limits on property tax hikes in those towns and cities.

Tier 4, the highest tier, would trigger “restructuring” for the town or city in question, if the town or city requests it or if the MARB demands it by a two-thirds vote.

On Tuesday, Malloy proposed easing up on towns in his new budget, making it easier for them to raise spending and revenue. This proposal, though, represents a stick in the carrot-and-stick process.

Thought the state of Connecticut has a small surplus for fiscal year 2017, the state is staring down a $1.5 billion deficit in fiscal year 2018. Now, the state will seek greater control over the budgets of struggling municipalities.