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State Senator

Steve Cassano

Representing Andover, Bolton, Glastonbury & Manchester

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Cassano Supports Democrats’ Budget Predictability Plan

State Senator Steve Cassano (D-Manchester) today joined Senate Democratic leaders in supporting a ‘budget predictability plan’ that would help Connecticut avoid future revenue volatility while simultaneously reducing the chance of unpredictable budget deficits and paying down some underfunded liabilities.

The Senate Democrats’ plan permanently caps the amount of revenue that the state can expect to collect every year from its highly volatile estimates & finals (mostly capital gains) portion of the state income tax; the plan caps those estimates at $3.1 billion per year, the current year’s collection rate, and does not assume any more revenue will be collected from Connecticut’s wealthiest residents.

Any revenues that might be collected above that $3.1 billion in future years would be dedicated to increasing the state’s budget reserve (known as the ‘Rainy Day Fund’) or making payments on unfunded liabilities, such as employee retirement pensions. Contributions could also be dedicated to certain one-time capital projects, paying in cash, rather than borrowing money.

“This is a very thoughtful and forward-thinking plan,” Sen. Cassano said. “We’ve got to learn how to do things differently in the State of Connecticut if we are going to maintain our reputation as having one of the best qualities of life in America. We need to have structural change when it comes to our budget-making process. This plan provides that structural change in a very meaningful way, the likes of which I have never seen proposed before. It’s tough medicine, but it’s necessary.”

“By limiting our state’s current and future reliance on highly volatile revenue streams, we can provide for more predictable budgets going forward and greater stability for all state initiatives,” said Senator John Fonfara (D-Hartford), Co-Chair of the Finance, Revenue & Bonding Committee and the architect of the budget predictability plan. “Dedicating volatile revenues we do receive to savings will strengthen the state’s fiscal position by improving our credit rating and paying down the unfunded liabilities that are now consuming an increasing share of state resources.”

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