This is in response to Paul Hughes’ Sept. 22 article in the Waterbury Republican-American about Gov. Dannel Malloy’s request for public support backing a state constitutional amendment creating a lock box on transportation funds. (See CTMirror’s story here.)
The article quotes Malloy as saying “What’s important now is that the legislature enact a constitutional lock box so that as we move forward in funding that people understand that any dollar that is collected for transportation will be spent on transportation. Nothing else.” Gov. Malloy should think before he speaks, as I find his comment laughable for several reasons.
1. Gov. Malloy himself has allowed the transfer of transportation funds to be used for other purposes. So to paraphrase a political saying, “he was for it before he was against it,” using transfers to balance his own budgets. How hypocritical he is! Does he think that we have forgotten that?
2. If Gov. Malloy feels that the transfer of transportation funds for other purposes is wrong, he has done nothing to prevent it from happening during his own tenure as governor. As governor, I am sure he could have disallowed such transfers to take place in the past but he did not.
3. Why stop with just the Transportation Fund? I am sure the state collects other taxes and fees that are collected for specific purposes, so why not instead propose legislation that prohibits the transfer of ALL funds collected for specific purposes to be used for other things?
4. Finally, do we really need legislation of this sort? There are already way too many laws on the books and we really don’t need more. What is needed is a governor and legislature that has the moral and financial ethics necessary to do the jobs they were elected to do. However, it is difficult if not impossible to do that when we elect a legislator who has filed for personal bankruptcy several times and a governor who moves items like Medicaid “off books” to create the false impression of a balanced budget.
I’d rather see a law that prohibits anyone from working on a $20 billion state budget of other people’s money if their own personal finances are not in good order.
Craig Hoffman is a retired industrial engineer and quality manager who lives in Cheshire.