STATE OF CONNECTICUT
THE STATE COMPTROLLER
|WYMAN PROJECTS $125.3 MILLION BUDGET DEFICIT|
|Contact: Steve Jensen|
State Comptroller Nancy Wyman today projected the state will close the fiscal year with a budget deficit of $125.3 million.
The 2003 fiscal year ended June 30, but some revenues continue to be counted through August. Wyman will officially close the state's books and issue her final deficit figure on Sept. 1.
Wyman's $125.3 million estimate is about $23 million higher than her June 1 projection, mainly due to weak performance of the income tax and the tax on corporate profits. The income tax brought in about $20 million less than expected last month, she said, and corporation tax was about $45 million below estimates.
The state's job picture has stabilized in recent months, Wyman said, and the unemployment rate has fallen from 5.3 percent to 4.9 percent. But the state still lost about 16,400 jobs overall in the 2003 fiscal year.
"The employment outlook remains weak," Wyman said. "It appears that the current low interest rates are prompting firms to invest in technology upgrades but not in hiring new workers."
The weak income and corporation tax collections were partially offset by end-of-year savings of unspent budgeted funds by state agencies.
There were some positive economic signals recently, Wyman said, including strengthening retail sales, especially in the automotive sector.
Wyman's $125.3 million deficit projection matches the most recent estimate made by the Governor's budget office, the Office of Policy and Management.
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
July 1, 2003
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