Mapping Budget Cuts

Senate Democrats have released a fascinating map of the governor’s budget cuts. Since it’s a map, I couldn’t resist! Click on a star or other icon for more information about the cut.

Someone spent a lot of time on this! You can see the map in full here. The map will be updated as additional cuts are identified.

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11 responses to “Mapping Budget Cuts

  1. We’ve all seen this sort of scare tactic used by virtually every school board when they don’t get what they want, and immediately issue press releases threatening to shut down the local high school football program, etc.

    Wake up people!
    There’s no money – get over it and stop spending what we can’t afford.

  2. Funny, they don’t have the same map with the impact of their tax increases. Apparently the D’s from Fairfield County had a collective heart attack.

  3. Every town’s star seems to have the exact same boilerplate message.

    The other icons have different messages. This, for instance, is the message on the Norwalk court:

    The governor’s budget plan would close the Norwalk Superior Court to reduce costs for the Judicial Department.

    The court’s closure would hurt businesses in the vicinity and could impose travel burdens on some residents.

    Seriously? The Democrats are concerned that what, a local deli in Norwalk isn’t going to sell as many sandwiches? There’s a McDonald’s across the street: is that what they’re worried about. I also noticed there is an Auto Zone nearby. Oh, and “could impose travel burdens on some residents.” This sounds like throw everything against the wall and see what sticks.

    If closing this court were really an issue, then you’d think they’d write something about how it would delay justice from being served, impose costs on resident and businesses for prolonging legal cases, etc.

    Do the Democrats propose in cutting anything beside people’s take home pay? I don’t know the issues behind the closing of this court. Obviouisly, people that live in Norwalk and the towns that this court currently serves would have to attend a different court that was presumably further away for most of the people. But what are the savings? Does this court have a lower case load? Could the state get some money by selling the building? Is it worth the cost of keeping this court open when there are also courts in Danbury and Bridgeport? Would consolidating courts make them more efficient (less overhead perhaps)?

  4. Someone spent a lot of time on this!

    Oh, yeah. If the Senate Democrats spent as much time trying to actually reach a budget agreement as they do poormouthing Rell and making pathetic attempts to gin up support for $3.3 billion in new taxes, we might actually have a new budget.

    But that would take … leadership. Not exactly Pornstachio’s forte. He’s more the daily cheap shot news conference, Web gimmick kind of guy.

  5. Thomas Hooker

    Oh, yeah. If the Senate Democrats spent as much time trying to actually reach a budget agreement as they do poormouthing Rell and making pathetic attempts to gin up support for $3.3 billion in new taxes, we might actually have a new budget.

    Does Rell deserve a pass when she still hasn’t presented a balanced budget? Should the Democrats simply give in to Rell, when her budget includes over $2 billion on borrowing, in effect putting off the tough decisions about taxes to another governor and another generation? Should the Democrats be blamed when they’re offering a budget that doesn’t inflict all of the pain of this recession and budget deficit on lower income working people, but demands that all Nutmeggers, including the wealthiest, share the responsibility for getting us through this?

    Why should the Democrats simply give in when they are the ones insisting on using real, honest estimates for the budget deficit, estimates from a non-partisan entity that haven’t changed since February, while Rell continues to lie- yes, lie- about the full extent of our fiscal troubles?

    Isn’t it, in fact, Jodi Rell who has abdicated responsibility, not General Assembly Democrats? And can you really blame Democrats, but not Rell, when Governor Rell refuses to even meet face to face with Democratic leaders to discuss the budget?

    Governor Rell’s actions in this matter are a disgrace. Blast your rhetorical anger in her direction.

  6. Should the Democrats simply give in to Rell, when her budget includes over $2 billion on borrowing, in effect putting off the tough decisions about taxes to another governor and another generation?

    Who left her with this unpalatable option? The Democrats in the Legislature, who did two things to address the ’09 deficit when it was of manageable size: Jack. And shit.

    Should the Democrats be blamed when they’re offering a budget that doesn’t inflict all of the pain of this recession and budget deficit on lower income working people, but demands that all Nutmeggers, including the wealthiest, share the responsibility for getting us through this?

    The Democrat tax package is in fact a massive middle class tax increase. The property tax credit? Gone. Sales taxes? Increased. Sales tax exemptions for things like college textbooks and baby car seats? Eliminated. The Democrats are sticking it to everyone — including the poor and the middle class — in the name of preserving the status quo for their union masters.

    Why should the Democrats simply give in when they are the ones insisting on using real, honest estimates for the budget deficit, estimates from a non-partisan entity that haven’t changed since February, while Rell continues to lie- yes, lie- about the full extent of our fiscal troubles?

    OFA estimates of the deficit are no more real, honest or non-partisan than those 0f OPM. Who do you think has appointed all of the top people at OFA in the last 20 years? Do you think they don’t know who runs the Legislature? Do you think their numbers are any more — or less — slanted than those produced by the governor’s budget shop? Numbers that back up your side of the argument aren’t necessarily gospel just because you agree with them.

    Isn’t it, in fact, Jodi Rell who has abdicated responsibility, not General Assembly Democrats? And can you really blame Democrats, but not Rell, when Governor Rell refuses to even meet face to face with Democratic leaders to discuss the budget?

    We’ve dealt with this weak bullshit so many times it has become tiresome, but here we go again: It’s the legislature’s job to pass a budget. Democrats have not just a majority but a supermajority. If they have such a great vision for the state, why can’t they pass whatever they want? They managed it with the Senate vacancy bill, the two bogus health care bills, the bogus “revenue forecasting” bill …

    The simple fact of the matter is they lack the scrotal fortitude to do it with the budget because they know the taxes they propose are economic suicide — and they know actually cutting spending will piss off all the special interests they sold their souls to to get elected. They are caught on the horns of a dilemma entirely of their own making. The question you ought to be asking is, Why should Rell step in and let these poor bastards off the hook?

    And the “the mean old governor won’t meet with us” dodge is the lamest excuse in the book. Everyone knows the top-level talks don’t start until the budget is all but finished. This budget isn’t even started.

    The actions of Williams and Donovan, Merrill and Harp, Geragosian and Looney in this matter are a disgrace. I’d suggest you blast your rhetorical anger at them … but it would be a waste of time. They have no shame — and you clearly have no interest in doing anything other than defending them.

  7. Does Rell deserve a pass when she still hasn’t presented a balanced budget? Should the Democrats simply give in to Rell, when her budget includes over $2 billion on borrowing, in effect putting off the tough decisions about taxes to another governor and another generation? Should the Democrats be blamed when they’re offering a budget that doesn’t inflict all of the pain of this recession and budget deficit on lower income working people, but demands that all Nutmeggers, including the wealthiest, share the responsibility for getting us through this?

    If you’re talking about the income tax, it’s a flat tax. A person who makes $100,000 pays twice as much in income tax as a person who makes $50,000. Sounds fair to me.

    Regardless, Redfive has it best: the Democrats are trying to whack it to everyone, and they’ll hit the middle class disproportionately. That’s what Democrats do: they promise help and they deliver pain.

    I actually disagree with Redfive: the Democrats in the General Assembly aren’t smart enough to know that raising taxes is economic suicide, but they’re smart enough to know that it’s political suicide, which is why they wouldn’t even support their own budget.

    Isn’t it, in fact, Jodi Rell who has abdicated responsibility, not General Assembly Democrats?

    Frankly, no.

    P.S. Thomas, here’s a little, insignificant anecdote about your shining model for government-run health care:

    http://www.star-telegram.com/health/story/1433038.html

  8. Thomas Hooker

    If you’re talking about the income tax, it’s a flat tax. A person who makes $100,000 pays twice as much in income tax as a person who makes $50,000. Sounds fair to me.

    Actually, I’m talking about Rell’s plan to raise bus fares by 40%, which puts the hurt on the poorest working people in this state who rely on buses to get to their low-wage jobs. I’m talking about instituting Keno gambling which attracts lower income gamblers who can least afford to be gambling, and borrowing ten years forward against the projected revenues. And I’m talking about cutting the community centers whose services are so vital to lower-income workers.

    Regarding the flat tax, this country has believed in the progressive income tax for more than a century, or at least the majority of people have- not Republicans. Why shouldn’t people in this state making more than a quarter of a million dollars a year pay a graduated income tax when they are best positioned to do so? Why make bus riders pay substantially more to get to work while wealthy Nutmeggers pay nothing more? Why should Connecticut’s top tax rate remain barely half of what it is in New York and New Jersey, while services are cut for struggling residents of this state? Is that fair?

    And why should corporate tax rates remain low when revenues from corporate taxes compared with total state tax revenues is far smaller than in many other states, including the sun belt states? is that fair?

  9. Thomas Hooker

    And the “the mean old governor won’t meet with us” dodge is the lamest excuse in the book. Everyone knows the top-level talks don’t start until the budget is all but finished. This budget isn’t even started.

    Rell’s already come out with her budget, the GA Republicans have come out with theirs, and the Democrats’ with theirs. How can you say she doesn’t meet with them until it’s all but finished? When is that?

    It’s the legislature’s job to pass a budget. Democrats have not just a majority but a supermajority. If they have such a great vision for the state, why can’t they pass whatever they want? They managed it with the Senate vacancy bill, the two bogus health care bills, the bogus “revenue forecasting” bill …

    If it’s the legislature’s job to pass a budget, then Rell shouldn’t be involved at all, and should simply sign into law the budget that the majority votes for in the General Assembly, right? If so, then she should say so, the Democrats will enact their bill and we’ll all go home, right? So is Rell upsetting the apple cart by not agreeing to the Democratic plan?

    OFA estimates of the deficit are no more real, honest or non-partisan than those 0f OPM. Do you think their numbers are any more — or less — slanted than those produced by the governor’s budget shop? Numbers that back up your side of the argument aren’t necessarily gospel just because you agree with them.

    OK. Then you are suggesting that the Democrats forget about the size of the projected deficit, and pretend that it can be balanced without tax increases or added fees, for that matter, and should simply put forth a budget that envisions a, say, $5 bn deficit rather than the OFA’s $8.9 bn deficit? Would that satisfy you, or would you then scream bloody murder about the Democrats’ passing a dishonest and unrealistic budget?

  10. Actually, I’m talking about Rell’s plan to raise bus fares by 40%, which puts the hurt on the poorest working people in this state who rely on buses to get to their low-wage jobs. I’m talking about instituting Keno gambling which attracts lower income gamblers who can least afford to be gambling, and borrowing ten years forward against the projected revenues. And I’m talking about cutting the community centers whose services are so vital to lower-income workers.

    Have you given any thought as to whether bus operating expenses have increased? Everyone loves mass transit, but no one loves paying for it. Also, we’ve already got Lotto, Powerball and the two largest casinos in the United States, as well as keno across the border in Massachusetts and New York.

    Regarding the flat tax, this country has believed in the progressive income tax for more than a century, or at least the majority of people have- not Republicans. Why shouldn’t people in this state making more than a quarter of a million dollars a year pay a graduated income tax when they are best positioned to do so? Why make bus riders pay substantially more to get to work while wealthy Nutmeggers pay nothing more? Why should Connecticut’s top tax rate remain barely half of what it is in New York and New Jersey, while services are cut for struggling residents of this state? Is that fair?

    No, actually. It’s unfair. The state (and the federal goverment) already pay a grossly disproportionate share of its tax burden on the backs of a tiny minority, and in no other situation is such discrimination condoned. You cannot argue for the progressive income tax on the basis that it is fair, because it is not. Furthermore, your goal of increasing tax rates on the richest will defeat its own purpose, because they will get up and leave. This is inarguable.

    Also, now that you’re bringing up New York and New Jersey, take a look at their job growth after raising their tax rates over the last ten years. Then take a look at New Hampshire’s. Which would you rather have? A growing middle class or a beaten one?

    If Connecticut was such a wonderful place for the rich, why aren’t they coming here? We’re 45th in the nation in attracting rich people, an interesting stat given that we depend on rich people to pay our bills.

  11. Isn’t it, in fact, Jodi Rell who has abdicated responsibility, not General Assembly Democrats? And can you really blame Democrats, but not Rell, when Governor Rell refuses to even meet face to face with Democratic leaders to discuss the budget?</blockquote

    Knowing the Democrat playbook, as long as there is a Republican living within a 50 mile radius, it is always their fault and if all else fails, blame it on George Bush.

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