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Red Ink Continues To Climb
State Comptroller Kevin Lembo is predicting the state will end the year with a $31.6 million deficit. The total is $1.9 million higher than the $29.7 million the legislature’s Office of Fiscal Analysis predicted last month, and it’s $12 million more than the $19.6 million Gov. Ned Lamont’s Office of Policy and Management predicted.
Gov. Lamont wants special session to vote on highway tolls, hospitals and restaurants during week of Dec. 16
Gov. Ned Lamont told leaders of the state legislature Tuesday evening that he wants a special session before Christmas to approve four contentious issues, including a scaled-back highway tolls plan. "I understand and appreciate this is a difficult and expedited time frame, but believe these to be important issues which require resolution before year-end,'' Lamont said in an email to both Democratic and Republican leaders. “I have instructed my office to prioritize my time to...
Nonprofits say philanthropy alone can’t save services
To paraphrase Connecticut’s private, nonprofit social service agencies: Gov. Ned Lamont just doesn’t get it. Frustration with Lamont, who rebuffed a request from nonprofits for $100 million of the state’s $2.5 billion reserve, recently surged after the governor urged the agencies to ask more from wealthy donors.
Court Hands Municipal Broadband Supporters A Victory
Superior Court Judge Joseph Shortall just made it easier for cities and towns to begin contemplating what municipal Internet service might look like for their residents and businesses. In a decision issued last week, Shortall found that the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority “overstepped its bounds as an administrative agency” in deciding the municipalities were restricted from using what’s called “free gain” or utility pole space to provide internet service to its residents.
Lamont’s dedication to reserves stems from debts heaped on Malloy
As Gov. Ned Lamont tries to decide whether to weaken Connecticut’s firewall against the next recession to jumpstart its cash-starved transportation program — as Republicans have proposed — he can’t help but look backward. Lamont’s rearview mirror is fixed on his predecessor, Dannel P. Malloy. More specifically, it’s centered on the fiscal chaos Malloy faced — due in no small part to the empty reserves and debt he inherited.
House Democrats counter with trucks-only tolls
The House Democratic majority offered a transportation financing plan Tuesday that recycles a campaign proposal made and abandoned by Gov. Ned Lamont: Trucks-only tolls to be charged at a dozen bridges on interstate highways in Connecticut. The concept was quickly welcomed by Senate President Pro Tem Martin M. Looney, D-New Haven, whose unyielding opposition effectively killed Lamont’s broader proposal of charging tolls on all motor vehicles at 14 tolling gantries.
Funding cliff for community health centers puts staffing, patients at risk
Federal funding for community health centers is nearing expiration this year. And both health professionals and politicians are warning, that may have some impacts on Connecticut centers and patients. Laying people off of work isn’t something that CEO Nichelle Mullins wants to do just before the holidays. But if federal funding for Charter Oak Health Center in Hartford stops coming, she may have to.
Senate GOP’s no-tolls alternative relies on rainy day fund
The Senate Republican minority on Thursday proposed using budget reserves in a complex and creative way to finance an overhaul of Connecticut’s creaky transportation system without tolls or new taxes, inviting Gov. Ned Lamont and Democratic lawmakers to weigh those political advantages against sacrifices and risks inherent in the plan.
House Dems Back Truck-Only Tolls, Tell Lamont To Scrap Car Tolls
House Democrats told Gov. Ned Lamont Tuesday that car tolls are off the table. House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz and House Majority Leader asked Lamont to consider truck-only tolls on 12 of the 14 bridges that are part of the governor’s transportation plan. House leadership would eliminate the tolls on Route 9 and the Wilbur Cross and Merritt Parkways.
Study Says Fairfield County Has Nation’s Highest Wage Inequality
A recent study by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York found that Fairfield County is the most unequal place in America when it comes to income. The report shows that in general most unequal places tend to be large urban areas and the New York-Northern New Jersey region is home to some of the most and least unequal places in the country. But the study ranked Fairfield County as the most unequal metropolitan area in the nation in both 1980 and 2015. The top wage earners in Fairfield...