Seal of the State of Connecticut

January 30, 1996

Dear Citizens of Connecticut:

The responsibilities of the Comptroller were first set out in the State Constitution in 1786 and have been expanded over the years through the Connecticut General Statutes. As Comptroller, I serve as the state's chief fiscal guardian and am responsible for protecting and accounting for the state's assets. This role specifically involves analyzing the state's budget and more generally includes monitoring the state's overall fiscal condition. In addition, my office pays most of the state's bills, handles the state's payroll, and administers all payroll-related benefits for state employees and retirees. These include health insurance, life insurance, deferred compensation, and state retiree pensions. As a constitutional officer, I report directly to you, the people of Connecticut. In that capacity I am pleased to provide you with this report on Connecticut's economic health.

Today, Connecticut stands at a crossroads. Many problems - - slow job growth, federal funding cuts, rising health care costs, and the growing needs of our cities and towns -- continue to confront us. Each of these issues has to be addressed aggressively if our state is to move forward in strong economic health. The efforts of my office, in this regard, are focused entirely on helping to create a better future for our state's residents.

The report that follows is divided into three sections that cover the state budget, the state economy, and the changing demographics of Connecticut. As this report demonstrates, our state is still struggling to regain its economic vitality. Connecticut's quality of life depends largely on our ability to reverse these trends. In my role as Comptroller, I have identified several areas where my office can take the lead in helping to improve the lives of Connecticut's citizens. Specific initiatives within these areas are detailed later in the document.

I hope this report provides helpful information as we all work together to improve Connecticut's future.

Sincerely,

Nancy Wyman

State Comptroller


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