CTNJ/Opinion: Malloy’s dizzying budget storm targets towns

Terry Cowgill

Terry Cowgill

Terry Cowgill lives in Lakeville, blogs at ctdevilsadvocate.com and is news editor of The Berkshire Record in Great Barrington, Mass.

As I write this on Thursday morning, an awesome white cloud is swirling around the mountains and valleys of the Northwest Corner. The ivory blitz is proceeding at a pace so blinding that I can scarcely track the inches of accumulation. Come to think of it, that’s an apt metaphor for the dizzying array of budgetary pronouncements that have come out of the Malloy administration just in the last 10 days or so.

With the exception of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s budget chief Ben Barnes a few years ago, we haven’t heard much use of the dreaded word “crisis.”

There simply is no other plausible reason for most of the unpopular moves that Malloy has made in the last few days and months. With each passing week, Barnes’ off-the-cuff characterization of Connecticut two years ago as being in a “period of permanent fiscal crisis” reaches new heights of urgency.

And for the immediate future it looks like the state’s smaller towns and cities will be the ones to pay for most of it. Though he has announced he will seek to increase taxes and fees and eliminate some tax credits on the state level to raise $400 million in revenues over the next two years, Malloy has acted to effectively increase property taxes by rolling back perhaps the most popular program the state has to offer: aid to towns, cities and school districts.

Read the full story at CT News Junkie.

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