House Democrats Budget Proposal
This budget focuses on one of the most important issue areas, and one that we have heard from an overwhelming number of constituents – keeping our education system intact and serving our children to the best of our ability. In order to keep funding our education system, and holding the line on property taxes, our proposal includes a one-half of one-percent increase to the sales tax. We also provide towns with additional optional revenue options, such as a 1% local restaurant sales tax and the ability to raise certain local fees.
Our plan has many items that Democrats and Republicans support including:
- A cap on bonding to reduce long term debt
- Oversight of finances and economic development for towns that are in fiscal distress
- Regionalizing services and facilitating regionalism through changes to collective bargaining statutes
- Allowing municipalities to create “Urban development districts,” including a 0% corporate tax rate incentive for new and expanding businesses
- A dedicated revenue stream for tourism funding
- Funding technical high schools, workforce development and a manufacturing pipeline
- Cleaning up residences with lead paint and supporting efforts to stabilize and repair sinking homes and crumbling foundations
- Supporting firefighters who have job-related cancers and taking care of police officers who suffer from PTSD
- Requiring votes on state employee union contracts
- Consolidation of state agencies and municipalities offices to create “one-stop” government centers in 2019
- Modifying the Citizens Election Program to require more on the part of candidates
In the area of taxes, there are no new taxes on hospitals, a reduction of tax expenditures and credits by $36 million in 2019, phasing out of state income taxes on Social Security in 2020, tax incentives for graduates to stay in Connecticut in 2020 and a lifetime cap on gift and estate taxes in 2020.
The updated budget has been presented to all four legislative caucuses and the governor as a basis for further negotiations, leading to a House vote during the week of September 11th.