There have been some very big steps recently in getting us to a State Budget. The six key leaders from both parties, minus the Governor, have agreed on a budget. However, there is little documentation on what is included and, more importantly, what is not included in this budget proposal.
It will take another week for this budget to be reviewed by the rest of the members of the General Assembly. Once the vote takes place, the next step is to send it to the Governor.
It took two weeks to prepare documentation needed to present the first proposed budget which the Governor vetoed. He has not been very open or clear on what his thoughts are or whether he will sign or veto this latest budget. The Governor was not included in recent negotiations between the leaders of both parties.
If the Governor vetoes the budget, it would go back to the Assembly where legislators may seek the required two-thirds majority to override the Governor’s veto.
We might not have a budget until after Thanksgiving and, in that case, it could then take three to four more weeks for checks to start flowing to the towns, cities and organizations that desperately need funding. This funding may not even be received by towns, cities and critical programs until after January 1, 2018.
As I explained in my last blog, my administration has taken the necessary steps to ensure the Town will continue operations despite not receiving any State funding this year. We have put a hold on capital projects and continue to have a strategic hiring freeze in place. Once Fairfield’s Mill Rate was set last Spring, we had very few options other than to cut expenses. We have done our best to minimize the impact on our residents. It is good that we started cutting costs last year so we had some additional savings or surplus to help out this year.
Thanks for taking time to read this important update.