Seal of the  State of Connecticut, Office of the State Comptroller

STATE OF CONNECTICUT

NANCY WYMAN
COMPTROLLER

OFFICE OF THE STATE COMPTROLLER
55 ELM STREET
HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT 06106-1775

MARK OJAKIAN
DEPUTY COMPTROLLER

WYMAN PROJECTS $270.5 MILLION BUDGET SURPLUS
Comptroller Says Connecticut's Economy Moderating But Strong
Contact: Steve Jensen
860-702-3308/3301

State Comptroller Nancy Wyman today projected the state will end the 2000 fiscal year with a budget surplus of $270.5 million, fueled by moderating but continued economic growth both nationally and in Connecticut.

Despite lower than expected capital gains receipts in April, overall economic growth continues to add modestly to the surplus, Wyman said. The state has realized 6.2 percent annualized growth in personal income, added an extraordinary 5,800 jobs in March and has a low 2.3 percent rate of unemployment.

"Consumer spending fueled by stock market gains has been a major contributor to the overall growth in the economy," Wyman said. "But continued volatility in the financial markets could weaken the state's economy and reduce revenues in future fiscal years."

Wyman's $270.5 million surplus estimate is about $5 million higher than her April 1 projection. It is also about $23 million higher than the most recent surplus prediction by the state Office of Policy and Management, which issued a $3.9 million decrease over its previous projection.

Despite respectable growth in income and sales tax receipts, which will bring in more than $7 billion combined this fiscal year, overall revenues are expected to grow at a more modest rate of 3.6 percent. General Fund spending, meanwhile, is expected to expand by 6 percent this fiscal year.

Wyman said that pattern reverses the trend of the last five years, when average revenue growth outpaced the growth in state spending.

"Obviously, the gap between revenue and spending growth cannot be sustained," Wyman said. "These trends indicate that the state must act now to stabilize the revenue base and moderate the growth in spending."

The 2000 fiscal year ends June 30.

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 - osc.opinions@po.state.ct.us

Learn more about the Connecticut Comptroller's Office by calling up our Internet Home Page, at the link below.

For Immediate Release
May 1, 2000

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