CT Democrats: the party of actual responsible budgeting

Newsletter Volume 1 • Number 42

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Ever since Ronald Reagan’s experiment with trickle down economics created a yawning budget deficit that doomed Greenwich’s own George “No New Taxes” Bush’s re-election bid, Republicans nationwide have abandoned responsible budgeting.

The story since has been one of Republican administrations blowing up the federal deficit by enacting massive tax cuts for the wealthy while trying to slash critical public services for the working class. Then, when people realize they’ve been had,  Democrats take over and bring budget and spending priorities back from the brink. In just four years, President Trump increased the national debt by $7.8 trillion, and the deficit by nearly $2 trillion. Since Biden took office, the deficit has decreased by $1.7 trillion.

So days after Tax Day, it bears repeating that in Connecticut, the party of actual tax cuts—and responsible budgeting—is the Democratic Party. Last year Connecticut Democrats passed a $660 million tax cut, a plan that nearly every Republican opposed. Moreover, it appears that Gov. Ned Lamont and the leadership of the General Assembly are headed toward passing another tax cut that includes an income tax break for the first time in three decades.

The editorial board at Hearst newspapers is actually concerned that Democrats aren’t spending enough. “We’re left, then, with modest increases in spending for education, social services and health care at a time when needs continue to grow,” they reasoned.

It’s a fair point. There are still many unmet needs in Connecticut. Lamont’s plan would provide tax savings of $594 per year for middle income couples while the legislature’s finance committee plan would save the same couple $198 less in order to increase funding for essential needs.

These are healthy debates, made possible because Democrats in leadership positions have engaged in responsible budgeting, paying careful attention to funding critical services and public projects that improve quality of life for everyone in Connecticut.

For instance, Lamont replenished the state’s rainy day fund, which Republican governor Jodi Rell had drained. Now Connecticut’s cash reserves are the largest they have ever been. At the same time, it’s estimated that recent state contributions to reduce our pension fund debt will save taxpayers $440 million in interest payments.

How refreshing. This stands in sharp contrast to the ideologically driven, cynical budget process Greenwich has just witnessed at the hands of the Republican majority on our Board of Estimate and Taxation (BET). Wielding their tie-breaking vote, BET Republicans ignored their Democratic colleagues, members of the Board of Education, building committees, and the pleas of the community and rammed through a town budget that disregards school kids, families, public safety, and smart municipal planning.

This November, vote for responsible budgeting in Greenwich. Vote for the Democrats on the BET.

Legislative updates

Senator Richard Blumenthal announces federal funding for CT water infrastructure
and PFAS contamination remediation. Source: Newstimes

CT Benefits from federal clean water funds

Connecticut will soon receive $73.5 million from the Environmental Protection Agency to help upgrade and maintain essential drinking water infrastructure across the state. On Earth Day, Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) announced that the funds will be used for lead service line replacement and to remove PFAS from drinking sources—a widely used class of chemicals that persist in the environment and are associated with cancer due to their ability to disrupt the endocrine system. “This is the first step, not the end, and it’s a big first step,” said Blumenthal.

for your calendar

april 30

Community Clean Up with State Representative Hector Arzeno. Sponsored by the Young Democrats of Stamford. Montgomery Pinetum.

May 3 & May 6

Drop in for coffee and conversation, meet fellow Democrats and get involved. Wednesday May 3 and Saturday May 6, 10:00 a.m., Coffee for Good. 48 Maple Avenue

May 12 & May 13

Native Plant Sale, Greenwich Land Trust. While supplies last. Your chance to buy locally grown native plants to attract pollinators and sustain wildlife. $10/plant, $8 for ten or more. Greenwich Land Trust, 370 Round Hill Road

You know you want one…

Show your Greenwich Democratic pride! Click here to request a free bumper sticker.

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Editorial that caught our eye

Greenwich Republicans: Here’s a campaign slogan to try out. “Make America Great Again, Again sounds pretty silly, and it sure flopped in 2020. But Who Needs Experts? really captures what the party is about,” writes Svetlana Wasserman. “Who Needs Experts like the Board of Education, its building committees and its architects when our local Republican Party activists know best what the size of a new middle school should be, its design, its costs, its enrollment, and even how many bathrooms it should have?”

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