Scanlon Lauds Passage Of Bipartisan Budget

October 26, 2017

Rep. Sean Scanlon today praised the legislature's overwhelmingly bipartisan vote to approve a state budget that ends Connecticut's fiscal crisis.

“This budget is a win for Guilford and Branford. It does not raise income or sales taxes, reverses massive education cuts we faced in earlier proposals and proves what I’ve long believed: That even in this politically divisive time, Democrats and Republicans can and should put aside our differences and work together to solve big problems in the best interest of our state,” Scanlon said.

Education and Municipal Aid Cuts Reversed

Earlier this year, Governor Malloy proposed eliminating all education cost sharing (ECS) grants - the main source of state education funding for towns - from both Branford and Guilford. This cut, coupled with his proposal to require towns to contribute one-third of the cost of their teacher pensions, would have cost both communities nearly $3 million each.

Under this budget, Branford's total cut this year was $157,530 and Guilford's $182,869.

“I heard loud and clear from parents, teachers and administrators that Malloy’s cuts to education would have been a disaster and I am truly proud to have worked with my fellow Guilford and Branford delegation members to oppose those cuts and successfully reverse them,” Scanlon said.

New Funding for Walsh Intermediate School and Baldwin Middle School

The budget includes new funding for two important and necessary school projects the Branford and Guilford delegations advocated for throughout this year.

In Branford, the budget includes $30,385,909 for the extension and alteration of the Walsh Intermediate School - a 35.36 percent state reimbursement share.

In Guilford, the budget includes $713,799 in funding to replace the original windows at Baldwin Middle School. The windows, nearly 50 years old, are outdated and not up to today's security and environmental standards.

“Government has a job to make sure our schools are safe and the environment is conducive to learning. I’m proud to have worked hard with my colleagues to ensure we got this new and important funding to benefit our middle schools,” Scanlon said.

New Structural Changes

As part of the compromise, several new structural changes such as the institution of a spending cap, a bonding cap and a requirement that the legislature vote on all union contracts are included in the new budget.

Protecting Programs That Matter

The budget:

  • Reverses cut to UConn in the original Republican budget from $120 million to $65 million
  • Funds the Roberta Willis Scholarship for high school seniors to help afford college
  • Preserves $200 property tax credit for seniors
  • Exempts Social Security and pensions from state income tax starting in 2019 (a bill Scanlon co-sponsored in 2016)
  • Creates “Passport to Parks” fund to ensure solvency of the state parks