Monday, April 20, 2009


The governor and Democratic legisaltive leaders are finally sitting down to begin -- yes begin -- budfget negotiations to addres the state's fiscal problem. It's about time.

When the legislature convened in January, the projected shortfall in revenue for the current fiscalyear was $385 million. Today, it is projected at $600 million -- at least, if not higher. (Twice as high)

When the legislature convened in January, the projected revenue shortfall for the next two years was $6 billion. Today, that projection is between $8 billion and $9 billion. (One-third higher)

There are only six weeks remaining in the legislative session. There are just 10 weeks remaining before the start of the new fiscal year.

We have word this morning that union leaders have agreed to the proposed union concessions. That deal now goes to rank and file members next week for their approval.

That's a start....but that's no where near what still needs to be done....and time is slipping away.

But what's frustrating is this sense that no one sees any need for urgency. They're all working on legislative time ... where reality is checked at the door before entering.


Blogger wtfdnucsailor said...

Unfortunately, the "leisurely process" reflects to the local level as well. There was a stir in Waterford when the BOF considered sending letters to the First Selectman and the Board of Education asking that they start negotiating with the town unions for a wage freeze starting in the 2011 budget since the BOF projections were that they would not be able to keep the tax increase to zero for the 2011 budget without some consessions from the town unions. Both management and the unions jumped on the BOF for getting to far ahead of the problem. Management said it hampered their negotiations with the unions on current contracts and the unions informed BOF members that the unions will not negotiate consessions until the finances are "in extremis" because they don't give back unless it is absolutely necessary. The BOF chose not to send the letters but hope that the message got across to both sides of the negotiating table that the 2011 budget would not be as easy as the 2010 budget currently under consideration in the town. Other towns are experiencing difficulties this year and are in emergency negotiations or seeing major budget cuts. Planning ahead to limit the impact of necessary budget cuts doesn't seem to be in some folks interests.

10:10 AM  
Blogger Ray Hackett said...

I couldn't agree with you more. It's like they all think it's suddenly going to disappear overnight. I don't get it.

2:27 PM  
Blogger Bill Jenkins said...

Wow Ray, you wrote this on April 20th and today is July 26th and still no budget.

They've got to cut spending but seem unwilling o do that which is sad.

10:07 AM  

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