Opinion: Don’t be fooled by surplus smoke and mirrors

By Susan Bigelow

HARTFORD, Conn. – Good news: The state government is running a bigger-than-expected surplus! Just don’t dig too deeply into the numbers.

The new surplus is twice what analysts thought it would be, and for a state that in 2011 faced a massive $3 billion budget hole it’s great to be in the black at last. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said in a statement that the increased surplus “. . . highlights the continued progress we have made in turning a record-setting $3.6 billion deficit to a surplus of more than $500 million, while at the same time making smart investments to improve our education system and grow jobs.” It sounds great, right?

But this is Connecticut, where good news always comes with some sort of catch…

Read the complete story at CT News Junkie.



4 responses to “Opinion: Don’t be fooled by surplus smoke and mirrors”

  1. Piberman

    The real news is not the doubtful surplus but a projected billion dollar deficit the following year.

  2. Oldtimer

    Complain all you want, inheriting an enormous deficit and changing it into a surplus is some accomplishment.

  3. Piberman


    If you read the details the surplus exists only if the questionable financial slight of hands are ignored. That’s why a billion dollar deficit is projected the following year.

    When politicians claim “success” look at the details. Smoke and mirrors on the way to re-election with more tax hikes. Guaranteed.

    Maybe you can get Pres Obama to offer Gov Malloy a DC appt. Treasury ?
    Such “expertise” in CT must be rewarded in DC.

  4. Inquirying Mind

    I’m not arguing here, but is this simply a snapshot of the cash flow similar to when I deposit my paycheck prior to writing out the bills? The balance is healthy, but there is still the gas bill, the oil bill, the phone bill, taxes…etc. that are either due right away or sometime next week. It’s not smoke and mirrors, it’s simply how the money flows in and out. If I only pay the minimum balance due on the credit card (and make the card sponsor dance for joy), I can project the accumulating interest as additional debt next month. Today, the balance may be high, but tomorrow when the check to the IRS clears, it’ll be a whole lot lower.
    The bigger question is not what the balance is today, but what the State legislature is doing to get out of the deficit.

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