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Opinion: Newly raised bills for 2016 belie worries about the economy

Susan Bigelow
Susan Bigelow

Susan Bigelow is an award-winning columnist and the founder of CTLocalPolitics. She lives in Enfield with her wife and their cats.

At the start of every legislative session, members submit a blizzard of new bills for consideration. Many of them are either merged into other bills or blessedly forgotten, but they’re all still worth looking at to see what’s on lawmakers’ minds. This year, it’s all about taxes and the economy.

Many of the new bills for this short session are about taxes, which isn’t surprising given GE’s move out of state and the grumpy mood of the electorate lately. For example, Sen. Paul Formica, R-East Lyme, is sponsoring one of many bills that would repeal the business entity tax. This is a fairly minor fee that businesses have to cough up every time they file with the state, so it’s essentially a tax they have to pay just for existing. Business owners hate this thing, and have been trying unsuccessfully to get rid of it for years. Repealing what has to be a relatively small income stream would help mend fences with the business community in this state, but I doubt it’ll happen this year.

Quite a few bills want to scrap taxes on hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers, such as HB 5060, which is being proposed by Rep. Ben McGorty, R-Shelton. This would make life easier for hospitals, especially as state money to hospitals begins to dry up. Of course, a lot of the larger hospitals are ridiculously profitable, so they may be hurting less than they say.

See the complete story at CT News Junkie.

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