STATE OF CONNECTICUT
THE STATE COMPTROLLER
WYMAN PROJECTS BUDGET DEFICIT OF $482.3 MILLION
|Contact: Steve Jensen|
State Comptroller Nancy Wyman today projected that the state will end the 2003 fiscal year with a budget deficit of $482.3 million.
Wyman's deficit estimate rose by $67.4 million over last month's. Continued weak collections of the income tax due to job losses account for most of the increase.
Connecticut has lost about 8,700 jobs during the first five months of the fiscal year, resulting in reduced collections of the payroll-withholding portion of the income tax.
Also contributing to the deficit hike is the fiscal uncertainty created by the impending layoff of about 2,800 state employees and the ongoing budget dispute between the Governor, the General Assembly and the state-employee unions.
"Your plan to lay off 2,800 state employees will produce a 32 percent increase in the state job-loss figure and impair the state's future employment prospects," Wyman said in her report to the Governor. "The layoffs will also further weaken the performance of the income tax and have a secondary impact on other tax categories."
Wyman said the lack of a plan to address the deficit nearly halfway through the fiscal year also figured into her latest deficit projection. As weeks go by with no budget resolution, she said, it becomes less likely that any deficit-reduction plan will be able to produce a balanced budget by the end of the fiscal year June 30.
Wyman noted that the reduced revenue from the income tax was partially offset by stronger-than-anticipated collections of taxes on cigarettes and corporation profits, as well as $109 million in revenue from the state's tax amnesty program.
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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