On Connecticut’s self-inflicted financial meltdown

Connecticut is spiraling out of control. Gross mismanagement, political ideology, cronyism, and entitlement are self-inflicted wounds. The state’s projected $1.5 billion fiscal deficit is just the tip of an iceberg into which Connecticut is colliding. It is a devastating multi-year crash that could have been avoided. Now, residents who remain, either by choice or necessity, will all have to bear its brunt.

Malloy’s budget cuts add to Connecticut education funding crisis

Connecticut’s education system is facing a crisis, and it seems to be growing every day. Over the holidays, Gov. Dannel Malloy announced his proposal to end education aid to certain towns. Last week, he told some mayors and town managers that they are in “substantially better shape” than the state and advocated for a “fairer” distribution of state education funds. While the governor’s office points out that the cuts he proposes are being made to the wealthiest towns, it matters to everyone.

CEA report mischaracterizes Trailblazers and Stamford academies’ spending

We write in response to the recent Connecticut Education Association report on charter school management fees, and more specifically about two of the schools mentioned in that report, Trailblazers Academy and Stamford Academy. Throughout that report, there seems to be a misunderstanding of what our schools are, who we serve, what we do, and the costs associated with running our schools.

Despite officials’ claims, Connecticut not on positive job-growth trajectory

I read with great concern and disappointment a recent article that appeared in the Sunday Stamford Advocate (and affiliated papers) on 1/8/17 entitled “New Jobs are job No. 1.” As a business owner, business leader and one connected with hundreds of businesses in the state and the region, I can comfortably say that many of the perceptions stated by the various elected officials quoted in this piece are categorically false and demonstrate how out of touch many in elected office in Hartford seem to be.

Connecticut should create an ‘Office of Economic Diversity’

The State of Connecticut has wisely established a Manufacturing Innovation Fund (MIF), with $70 million to support this critical sector of our state economy. That fund should take a small portion of its reserves — $250,000 annually is a modest but reasonable amount — to set up an Office of Economic Diversity. The Office is Economic Diversity could be used as a data analysis and research coordinator, resource center and point of catalyst for encouraging start-ups of new tech companies and repositioning of current manufacturers towards commercial markets.

New legislative balance brings hope for Connecticut businesses

This recession also dampened the normally optimistic view of the future for many of the state’s residents, evident in the polling and focus groups CBIA conducted throughout the 2016 election season. But because of the resiliency of Connecticut businesses and their workforces, our companies are competing and winning every day.Employers are heartened by the hope that the new balance in the state legislature will lead to more bipartisanship, and therefore better policy choices, as they are by Gov. Dannel Malloy’s emphasis on a more predictable and stable fiscal environment for businesses in his Opening Day address to the General Assembly.

‘Pension spiking’ bleeding Connecticut’s budget — bigtime

“Pension Spiking” is the term used to describe the common practice whereby state and government employees contrive to boost their pensions in the last years of their employment. Pension spiking has been going on for years throughout the country, but it has been raised to a new level in Connecticut during Gov. Dannel Malloy’s two terms. By appointing a number of loyal Democrat legislators to judgeships or other high ranking positions in his administration, he has “spiked” their retirement benefits.

In a lean budget year, invest in Connecticut’s people

Connecticut residents and lawmakers grappling with the state’s fiscal challenges should start the New Year with one goal in mind: to build thriving communities across our state. Economic development policy should focus on investing in our people and our workforce by protecting the public systems such as education and health care that undergird a strong economy . Despite the headline-grabbing “business climate” rankings that bear little relationship to economic growth or actual tax climates, there’s more to economic development and tax policy than rates alone —businesses seek educated and productive workforces because it pays off.

State should not cut the military funeral honors program

As we come to the conclusion of another calendar year, we face the elimination of the State of Connecticut’s participation in funeral honors for our military fallen. Again, it’s a budget line item that exemplifies insensitivity and callousness toward the providers of our freedom and our way of life in this country.

Additional cuts to public education will hurt our students

The Connecticut Association of Boards of Education (CABE) and the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents (CAPSS) are very concerned about the mid-year cut of $20 million in education aid to municipalities announced by the Office of Policy and Management yesterday. These cuts are schedule to take effect immediately and will result in diminished educational opportunities for the students who attend Connecticut’s public schools.