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August 1, 2013

Child advocate critical of CT budget

Connecticut Voices for Children, a research and advocacy think tank, said in a report today that the state’s two-year budget approved in June will deepen the long-term budget deficit and could ultimately endanger funding for child and family services.

CVC argues in 'A Gambler's Budget' that lawmakers and Gov. Dannel P. Malloy are relying on quick-fix solutions to close deficits, such as borrowing nearly $600 million, $500 million in one-time revenue and more than $400 million in temporary fund transfers. CVC said those sources will dry up after two years, leaving a projected state budget deficit of $712 million in fiscal 2016 and comparable gaps in the years to follow.

The state’s reliance on the bond market could also result in less flexibility in the future, the report said.

In addition, the group said the approximately $109 million in the state’s rainy day fund may not be enough to overcome slow economic growth.

The state ended fiscal year 2013 with a surplus of approximately $189 million, Comptroller Kevin Lembo announced last month. About 90 percent of that will be used to fund this year’s budget.

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