Connecticut’s Fiscal Mess

Democrats hid the details of the ugly fiscal picture until after the election.

Jillian Kay Melchior
National Review Online

As Congress considers massive tax hikes to fix the U.S. deficit, the state of Connecticut is worth a look. There, a similar strategy is failing epically.

Governor Dannel Malloy’s budget chief told the state legislature on Wednesday that Connecticut was facing a $365 million deficit for this fiscal year. That’s nearly twice as big as the $205 million estimate released last week by the Office of Fiscal Analysis and the Office of Policy and Management. And it’s more than six times what Governor Malloy, a Democrat, had estimated before the election.

If you think that discrepancy is suspicious, you’re not alone. And consider this: Democrats, who hold the majority in both houses of the state legislature, voted to postpone the release of the fall consensus revenue forecasts, which revealed Connecticut’s rather ugly fiscal picture, until after November 6. Democrats say the delay was in order to give a more complete financial picture; Republicans say it was a political ploy. Come Election Day, Republicans failed to gain additional seats in either chamber of the legislature.

That’s a pity, because Republican lawmakers have correctly identified the problem: Connecticut has consistently spent too much, and then tried to fix the budget shortfall by raising taxes…

…Earlier this year, Barron’s named Connecticut the worst-run state in the nation. And this year’s deficit is nothing compared to what next year’s is likely to be; government analysts now project that in fiscal year 2014, Connecticut will face a $1.1 billion budget hole…

The entire article is at National Review Online.

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