government shutdown

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Budget deal has plenty for Connecticut

WASHINGTON – In rare bipartisan agreement, Congress on Friday approved a massive budget deal that will increase federal spending in Connecticut, providing big boosts for the state’s defense industry and health care programs and even helping schools educate displaced students from Puerto Rico. Every member of Connecticut’s congressional delegation, all Democrats, voted for the package. Continue Reading →

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Budget deal would rescue Newman’s Own from tax problem

WASHINGTON — A massive budget agreement headed for a vote in the Senate contains a provision that would save Newman’s Own from a thorny tax problem that threatens Paul Newman’s iconic food company. “This is not a tax break for Newman’s Own. It is simply legislative permission for us to continue to exist…,” said Bob Forrester, president and CEO of the Newman’s Own Foundation. Continue Reading →

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CT lawmakers weigh revival of earmarks

WASHINGTON — Reviled as corrupting and anti-democratic, congressional earmarks may have a revival because of recent comments from President Donald Trump and GOP lawmakers’ growing frustration with the budget process. Their return is fine with Connecticut lawmakers who have used the process to steer tens of millions of dollars to special projects in the state. Continue Reading →

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Budget impasse hurts CT defense industry, young immigrants, others

WASHINGTON — Whether, and how, Congress comes to an agreement on a massive spending bill to fund the federal government will impact Connecticut in several ways. The health of the state’s defense industry, as well as that of thousands of Connecticut children, and the fate of immigrant youth and the Affordable Care Act are at stake. Continue Reading →

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CT senators vow to fight for more aid for Puerto Rico

WASHINGTON – Congress is about to resume a bitter dispute about how much more federal help to provide Puerto Rico, where many residents are still without electricity or functioning schools or hospitals more than a hundred days after Hurricane Maria devastated the island. Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, who just visited the island, said they are committed to sharply increasing aid to Puerto Rico. Continue Reading →

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Congress turns its sights on budget mess that has special impact in CT

WASHINGTON — Consumed by its effort to pass a federal tax overhaul this week, Congress has failed to pass a budget that would keep the federal government operating past midnight on Friday. Attempts to find a solution to this problem will have their impact in Connecticut, determining how long the state can continue a health program for children and how long its defense contractors can hire new workers. Continue Reading →

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U.S. House approves stopgap bill that helps CT defense industry

WASHINGTON — Connecticut lawmakers on Thursday helped pass a stopgap spending bill that would prevent a government shutdown – and ease the way for the confirmation of retired Gen. James N. Mattis as the next secretary of defense – but there’s trouble in the Senate. Continue Reading →

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Feds tell states to stop processing food stamp benefits

WASHINGTON – The state’s 423,000 food stamp recipients could soon be early victims of Washington’s budget crisis. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has instructed the Connecticut Department of Social Services and similar agencies in all of the states to not dispense any October benefits to food stamp recipients “until further notice.” Some $60 million in food aid could hang in the balance, one Connecticut official said. Continue Reading →

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Senate Democrats block Planned Parenthood defunding bill

WASHINGTON — Senate Democrats on Monday blocked a Republican effort to strip federal funding from Planned Parenthood following the release of undercover videos that have raised questions about the organization’s harvesting of fetal tissue for research laboratories. Continue Reading →

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