STATE OF CONNECTICUT
THE STATE COMPTROLLER
|WYMAN ANNOUNCES 2000 BUDGET SURPLUS OF $300.4 MILLION
Comptroller Concerned that Spending is Outpacing Revenues
|Contact: Steve Jensen|
State Comptroller Nancy Wyman today announced that the state's final net budget surplus for the 2000 fiscal year was $300.4 million - the ninth consecutive year that the state has achieved a surplus.
The state had recorded a gross surplus of $496.8 million, but $196.4 million was appropriated by the legislature for a variety of expenses. By law, another $35 million was deposited into the state's emergency "Rainy Day Fund," bringing its balance to slightly more than $564 million.The remaining $265.5 million will be used for various "debt avoidance" projects related to school construction and wiring.
For the second year in a row, state government spending grew faster than the rate of revenue collected. The surplus, Wyman said, was mainly realized due to the use of prior years' surplus funds to pay for expenses in the 2000 fiscal year.
"Over the last five years, a portion of the surplus has been set aside to be used in the next fiscal year," Wyman said. "That cushion built up from previous years explains why the state finished 2000 with a surplus even though the spending rate rose faster than revenues. Clearly, state government needs to exert more spending discipline to live within its means."
Between fiscal 1999 and 2000, spending grew by 9.3 percent, or about $950 million. That represents the highest spending hike in eight years. Revenues grew by 5.6 percent, or about $597 million over 1999.
Wyman noted that in addition to the dramatic spending increase in fiscal 2000, the state's overall debt also increased by $196.2 million. While the state retired $948.3 million of debt she said, another $1.45 billion in new bonding was approved.
Wyman also announced that preliminary estimates indicate that the state should end the 2001 fiscal year with a budget surplus of nearly $175 million.
The State Comptroller appreciates input on this and other issues from residents of the state. Please feel free to contact her office by phone - (860) 702-3300; mail - OSC, 55 Elm Street, Hartford, CT 06106; or, via E-mail - firstname.lastname@example.org
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For Immediate Release
August 31, 2000
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