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PNS Daily Newscast - September 25, 2020 

Democrats reported to be preparing a smaller pandemic relief package; vote-by-mail awaits a court decision in Montana.

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Takes on Tackling the State's Budget Deficit

February 7, 2011

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - A new report from Connecticut Voices for Children shows Connecticut already ranks near the bottom among states in expenditures as a percentage of total income. It says the answer to the state’s $3.7 billion budget deficit is not to cut services further, but to raise revenue.

Research analyst Joachim Hero with Connecticut Voices for Children says the state has only three tax brackets, while other states, like New Jersey, have seven or eight.

"Connecticut's state and local tax system is currently regressive, which means that people at the bottom spend more of their income on state and local taxes than people at the top. We support a more progressive income tax, which would include raising the tax rates for high-income earners in the state."

One of Connecticut's leading business associations, meanwhile, opposes any tax increase but wants to reduce the deficit by making state government more efficient and effective. Connecticut Business & Industry Association vice president for Government Affairs Bonnie Stewart offers a few suggestions.

"There's a lot of things we can do with prison reform, such as reducing the rate of recidivism: That's a win-win for everyone. We can actually improve the outcome of long-term care and at the same time reduce the cost by allowing people to receive treatment in their homes."

Gian Carl Casa, undersecretary for Legislative Affairs in the governor's Office of Policy and Management, says Gov. Dannel Malloy will release his budget on Feb. 16, and he has promised two things: "Everyone's going to have to bear their share of the load in getting Connecticut back to economic strength, and the most vulnerable in society are not going to be left on their own."

Melinda Tuhus, Public News Service - CT