Gov. Dannel P. Malloy Thursday offered his strongest hint yet that he might propose a tax cut in two weeks when he delivers his latest budget to the legislature.
And the Democratic governor also defended the growing state surplus that has sparked tax cut speculation, even though that fiscal cushion is due in part to borrowing and other gimmicks.
“Suffice it to say the people of Connecticut have made sacrifices, and they need to share in the recovery as well,” Malloy said in response to reporters’ questions after a public appearance at Wilbur Cross High School in New Haven to announce a school infrastructure initiative. The governor, whose budget proposal for the 2014-15 fiscal year is due to the General Assembly Feb. 5, refused to provide specifics.
“I certainly intend to spell out what my priorities are in the coming days,” he said. “I will lay out my vision on my timeline.”
Malloy also touted the $506 million surplus his administration projected this week for the fiscal year that ends June 30. “I am immensely proud that a state that had the largest per capita deficit three years ago is now projected to have a $500 million surplus,” the governor said.
Despite rising income, sales and corporation tax receipts, that surplus remains controversial.
That’s because Malloy and his fellow Democrats in the legislature’s majority also put off $400 million worth of debt payments owed in the current two-year budget until after the election. They also moved $200 million in municipal aid, stem cell research and pollution abatement costs onto the state’s credit card.
When asked Monday about the surplus and his budget, the governor told reporters, “We can’t be all things to all people. So that means we have to pick and choose where we invest. I’ll invest in working families every day I get the chance. I’ll invest in educational achievement when I have the opportunity to do that.”