State of Connecticut Archives: on Budget & Economy

Bob Stefanowski: Remove excess bloat from the budget and keep the necessities

Zero-based budgeting starts with a "blank piece of paper" not an already bloated budget with special interests and sacred cows baked in. You add back in only the services absolutely needed while finding creative ways to do things cheaper. Even with "fixed" costs like debt service and SEBAC, 20 to 25% of CT's budget is "discretionary." With a two-year budget exceeding $40 billion, there are plenty of opportunities to identify savings and efficiencies.
Source: 2018 CT Gubernatorial race website Sep 1, 2018

Prasad Srinivasan: Connecticut regulations are choking growth

I moved to Connecticut in 1980. I chose Connecticut because it was then a state that had everything going for it. Fast-forward to now, and we see our state spiraling downwards. Our businesses, large and small, are leaving our state. People are moving out of the state. Young people do not see the same opportunities that drew us to Connecticut in 1980.

This pattern has to end. We can make it happen. Our businesses tell us repeatedly that our regulations are choking growth, that our business climate is unpredictable and that we are taxed to the point that it is difficult to compete. Without strong businesses, people in Connecticut will not have the jobs and opportunities they need to provide for their families. We therefore must ensure that our businesses, the backbone of our state's economy, flourish. When businesses do well, we all do well. But when businesses fail, poverty and unemployment follow.

Source: 2018 CT Governor campaign website Mar 11, 2017

David Walker: Revise and respect the Constitutional spending cap

Connecticut's budget is not balanced based on honest accounting and a reasonable definition of expenditures. Spending needs to be restructured and brought under control. We need to revise and respect the Constitutional spending cap, balance the state budget, and prohibit the use of debt to fund normal government operations. In addition, given Connecticut's poor financial condition, the Governor should make expanded use of his/her line item veto authority. Importantly, restoring economic vitality in Connecticut is an essential element to achieving fiscal sustainability.

Financial Condition: Connecticut has the highest liabilities and unfunded promises per taxpayer of any state. It's time to recognize reality--Connecticut's state government has grown too big, promised too much, and needs to be restructured. Connecticut must develop a comprehensive strategy to appropriately restructure the related programs and gain better control of its commitments.

Source: 2014 CT Lt. Gubernatorial campaign website, Jul 2, 2014

Susan Bysiewicz: Tax securities transactions $150B to fund mortgage relief

When asked how they would reenergize the U.S. economy, Murphy said he'd back a large federal investment in public works projects. "Costs for construction are the lowest in a generation," he said. "You can get great deals today...on building new roads, bridges or rail lines. In addition, we've got the highest construction unemployment in the country...we should be making a massive investment in roads and bridges and infrastructure."

Bysiewicz said the economy will not fully recover until the housing crisis is dealt with. She favors a plan to charge a small tax on every securities transaction. Such a charge would generate $150 billion annually; she said she'd use the bulk of the money to provide mortgage relief to middle class homeowners. The rest would be invested in renewable energy projects, she added. Murphy said he also supports a transaction tax.

Source: Hartford Courant on 2012 CT Senate debate May 24, 2012

Christopher Shays: OpEd: Spent $200M on "Bridge to Nowhere"

Shays questioned McMahon's conservative credentials in light of her big spending, $50 million, during her 2010 Senate race. McMahon chided Shays for voting for earmarks like the notorious Alaska bridge project. "$50 million pales in comparison to the 'bridge to nowhere' that you voted on as a congressman for $200 million," McMahon said, continuing, "You voted to raise the debt ceiling 8 times. You voted to raise the tax on gasoline. I don't think your record speaks to a conservative Republican."
Source: Connecticut Day on 2012 CT Senate GOP primary debate Apr 19, 2012

Christopher Shays: OpEd: Voted to raise the debt ceiling 8 times

Shays brought up McMahon's 2010 campaign for Senate, a race she lost to Democrat Richard Blumenthal despite spending $50 million of her own money. "I know Mrs. McMahon is not a fiscal conservative because she spent $50 million so recklessly,'' Shays said. "That's a waste."

McMahon responded with an attack of her own. "You voted to raise the debt ceiling eight times,'' she said. "I don't think your record speaks to a conservative Republican."

Source: Hartford Courant on 2012 CT Senate GOP primary debate Apr 19, 2012

Jodi Rell: Financial crisis came from unbridled greed & lax oversight

Families in Connecticut and across the nation are rightly fearful and angry. They want to know how and why this happened, and whose fault it is. They also want to know how they will ever be able to afford to retire or put their child through college, given the steep declines in their 401k's and savings accounts. How will they afford to pay their bills if they lose their job?

Unfortunately, other than unbridled greed by far too many on Wall Street and almost criminally lax oversight by far too many in Washington, there are no easy answers.

No easy answers, but lots of questions. Lots of concerns. These are the worst financial times any of us can remember. Let's face it, it's scary.

But one concern people should not have is a state government they cannot afford--which is what they have right now. And cities and towns will need our attention as they also struggle with the fiscal pressures of the economy.

Source: 2009 State of the State Speech to the CT General Assembly Jan 7, 2009

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2020 Presidential contenders on Budget & Economy:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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