House deliberates GOP-backed state budget plan

Lawmakers to vote on state budget plan today

Lawmakers to vote on state budget plan today

A 10 percent charge on fantasy sports' companies gross receipts tied to CT patrons only would yield $500,000 in the first year of the new budget and $700,000 in the second.

The plan introduced by Democrats in the House failed to come up for a vote early Friday morning.

Sen. John Fonfara, D-Hartford, and Rep. Jason Rojas, D-East Hartford, the other co-chairs, said the tax and fee hikes were part of a much larger plan to close significant projected deficits in state finances.

"I'm risking everything, but that's fine with me", he said.

"I did this because I honestly think the future of the state of CT is here", he said. "That's why I voted yes".

The state Senate was expected to take up the budget on Friday.

Doyle said there is potential for a truly bipartisan budget.

The GOP plan relies heavily on changes in state employee pensions after the current state union deal ends in 2027. Republicans say it achieves $270 million in savings.

Officials said the new budget plan includes a 49-cent monthly tax on the estimated 3 million cellphones in CT, a cigarette tax increase of 45 cents a pack and a decrease in the personal property tax exemption on state income tax forms, from $200 to $100. Republican leaders said they didn't know what to expect during the House vote.

Looney said the vote only "will prolong this contest which is so damaging". "While we weren't told that some members were voting yes, there were speeches clearly written well in advance of the end of the debate". It's going to continue the debate.

Looney added that the three did not participate in Democratic caucuses in the last several days. "I did what I thought was right today", Doyle said.

With no budget in place, Malloy is now controlling state spending under his limited executive authority. The Office of Fiscal Analysis said that it would generate $32 million a year.

"I respect what they did and what they've said", Fasano added. "Everyone has worked really, really hard to try to do their best, and to get called out on the floor like that is really just unbecoming". And while she didn't predict any outcome, she said it might be appealing to some House Democrats wary of growing taxes in the state. "That's kind of the fun of being here".

Democratic House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz, of Berlin, said the budget's detailed legal language, which had been delayed on Thursday, wouldn't be ready until at least 6 a.m. Friday. Still, there remain obstacles, including passing the House and getting approval from the governor, he admitted.

Democratic Senators Gayle Slossberg, Joan Hartley, and Paul Doyle voted for the amendment.

It incorporates savings from the concessions deal unions and Malloy struck earlier this year, as does the compromise plan reached by the governor and Democratic leaders.

A single position is what members of the Capitol Region Council of Governments recommended, Davis said, adding that CRCOG members "were a bit perplexed" by the Democratic plan that would have created a captive insurance company to oversee relief efforts.

The House voted to approve the plan early Saturday after beginning deliberations on Friday night. "They will not be slowed down in this effort to move CT forward", Balletto said.

The budget agreement was reached by Malloy and fellow Democrats in the legislature. "But it isn't a shift for me".

UConn President Susan Herbst issued a statement this morning, calling the state budget the General Assembly passed "appalling to us at UConn".

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