It wasn’t pretty but the Connecticut state Senate passed a two-year, $40 billion budget that raises taxes by about $2 billion over two-years. It also reworks and makes fairer the car tax, invests in transportation and charter schools.
Don’t think for a second that everyone goes home for the summer and that’s it. A special session is needed to clean up odds and ends. Some bills that didn’t get taken up might be resurrected.
The public relations winners were Senate President Martin Looney, whose experience and knowledge was needed to get the spending plan to even be taken up before the midnight Wednesday deadline. Looney threatened to use a parliamentary moved to end the debate, a move that hasn’t been used in decades.
Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano was also a PR winner, showing determination, and persistence. Although he couldn’t get his people into the budget talks, he pushed the majority party as far as he could. Fasano proved to be a more effective Republican leader than his predecessors.
The big PR loser was Gov. Dannel Malloy. His promise during the campaign last year to not raise taxes was tossed overboard. He will sign this budget. The broken promise may come back to haunt Malloy if he has his sights set on national office or the unlikely chance he runs for re-election again.