Under Biden, Democrats Are Poised to Raise Taxes on Business and the Rich
president’s infrastructure proposals are likely to require trillions of
dollars in new tax revenue. They also give liberals a chance to address
what they call the failures of Republican tax cuts...
Raymond Saulnier was right - letting dollar float was the beginning of the end for the economy...http://jonathanpelto.com/2016/11/08/running-congress-jonathan-pelto-green-party-candidate-2nd-cd/
2020 "WALLET HUB" REPORT: https://patch.com/connecticut/across-ct/tax-burden-connecticut-among-nations-worst-report
PRE-COVID-19, CT MIRROR: https://ctmirror.org/2019/07/17/wall-street-agency-warns-cts-battle-with-pension-debt-is-far-from-over/
H E N A R E S T A T E S
G O I N G T O C O M E T
O G R I P S W I T
H F E D E R A L I S M
A N D M A N U P ? N E W C T M I R R O R S E R I E S . . . Above COURANT story in full.
Here is a link we are sure many are dying to know about. And the "truth squad" report on what the mill rate really is in Hartford. We note other communities have varying rates, too. David Walker leaving CT.
BOSTON FED VISITS C.G.A.: https://www.courant.com/business/
How does the housing price performance, if that is what this means, parallel changes in demographics? And by the way, here is the 2019 latest from journalist with a grip on CT finances...
FIRST FIVE TO THE Nth POWER DEPT. (DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE)
Parallels to Consumer Financial Protection Bureau? Remember the FDR programs that the Supreme Court voided? And "packing the Court" too! Changing commercial real estate
market: "...Short of Amazon setting up shop in west Danbury, the
question remains: What do you do with a largely vacant 1.2
million-square-foot building in receivership?" from the Danbury News-Times' article.
WRINGING HANDS DEPT::
Since we are now focused on "Income Inequality" what about this news? https://www.theday.com/business/20181015/sears-files-for-chapter-11-bankruptcy-amid-plunging-sales-massive-debt
HOW IS THE CT BOND COMMISSION LIKE THE RUNNING OF THE BULLS IN PAMPLONA?
Someone always get gored - no reference to Al. Since it was a
Special Meeting no agenda changes allowed. Update: Meetings
cancelled so far in 2019...
And then the voting Republicans get trampled by Democrats who used the sharp horns of Mason's Rules (like Robert's Rules).
I WONDER WHAT THREATS WERE MADE FOR THE COMPTROLLER TO SWITCH? HE DIDN'T, HOWEVER.
Special Meeting of the Bond Commission did...what? Took away $$ from real needs to appease the Governor. Rep. Rojas makes lame excuse. 3 brave folks.
Motion to amend the agenda out of order. HA HA
- Item #15 for $10 million
toll study came to a vote.
- Only Republicans voting no - even tho'
Democrats opposed it. Comptroller Lembo was as good as his word.
Considering that there were members of the Legislature (Democrats)
at the table only Rep. Rojas had the courtesy to explain why they were
"Standing by Their Man" - which in a few words translates as "he's gone
before any real money gets spent."
- Rep. Rojas seemed to me to say the Governor promised to only send out an R.F.P.
CTNEWSJUNKIE report: https://www.ctnewsjunkie.com/archives/entry/20180725_10m_approved_to_study_tolls_on_connecticut_highways/
C.C.M. Forum July 2018: https://www.ctnewsjunkie.com/archives/entry/20180723_analysis_pension_shortfalls_loom_large_2_experts_talk_solutions/
PLEASE READ THIS ON PENSION DEBT
Taking the bull by its horns, as it were, an opinion piece from CT MIRROR
DOES CT NEED A FRESH LOOK? https://ctmirror.org/2018/04/03/attacking-state-pensions-stemerman-tries-break-gop-pack/
Regarding shopping malls and new owner: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-generalgrowth-bankruptcy/general-growth-files-historic-real-estate-bankruptcy-idUSLG52607220090416
THE SUN ALSO SETS DEPARTMENT
By Mark Steyn, NATIONAL REVIEW online
March 24, 2012 4:00 A.M.
"...There’s a famous exchange in
Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises. Someone asks Mike Campbell, 'How did
you go bankrupt? Two ways, he replies. 'Gradually, then
Speaking of Hemingway's quote: https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/01/california-coastal-elites-poor-immigrants-fleeing-middle-class/
HOLD ON TO YOUR POCKET BOOK DEPARTMENT: http://www.ct.gov/dob/cwp/view.asp?a=2235&q=587310
SOCIAL SECURITY NOW RUNNING A DEFICIT (JUNE 2018) - 2034 TO RUN OUT OF $$
DISTRESSED MUNICIPALITIES IN CT: https://www.theday.com/local-news/20181022/four-southeastern-connecticut-municipalities-considered-distressed
So what is a CT "distressed" municipality? "...Kolie
Sun, DECD senior research analyst, said nine factors are used for the
distressed municipalities list: per capita income, percent change in per
capita income, poverty rate, percent of population change, unemployment
rate, percent of employment change, age of housing stock, percent of
residents 25 and older who are high school graduates and equalized grand
list per capita."
CHARTER REVISION DEBATE IN GROTON: This will be fun to watch Election night!
By Charter Revisions, a few years ago, Weston implemented both a quorum
for ATBM and a Referendum vote on the bottom line of Town, School and
Capital Budgets. The unintended (or not?) consequences: http://www.aboutweston.com/budgetfy16new.html
MUNICIPAL ACCOUNTABILITY REVIEW BOARD
F . S . & E . G .
FISCAL STABILITY & ECONOMIC GROWTH
WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN YOU RUN OUT OF OTHER PEOPLE'S MONEY?
NORWALK HOUR EDITORIAL
This second report received
wide coverage. One of Co-Chairs. of original Commission noted the
timing is better this go 'round...
CT Retirement Security Authority
Election of 2018 removed two of Weston's legislatoras (center and right)
FOCUS ON CONNECTICUT
FOCUS ON WESTON...AND HOW WE RELATE TO THE LARGER PICTURE OF WHITHER CT?.
Some of us watched the CT Tax Panel as well as the Spending Cap Commission in succeeding summers, and reported online here.
CONNECTICUT STATE BOND COMMISSION MEETING JUNE 1, 2018 DISHES OUT THE $$
So who said there were any fiscal stability problems? To listen
to the Governor there's no problem. We just have to make sure the
workforce can match these higher-paying jobs he sees flooding in.
THE MULTIPLIER EFFECT: i.e. Simple economics - if you
create economic activity there is a spin off effect = 1
industrial/manufacturing job = 3 more in other businesses and parts
suppliers; 1 retail/commercial job = 2 more created; 1
government job.= 1 addition job. Oversimplification, but actually,
not too far from the empirical studies!
- Very complicated matter deciding how to "model" the economy of one
state all by itself. Should we be only thinking globally? Regionally -
which size region?
FIRST CAME CT TAX PANEL (2015), THEN THE SPENDING CAP COMMISSION (2016) AND
FINALLY, THE FISCAL STABILITY & ECONOMIC GROWTH COMMISSION (@Nov. 2017 - Mar. 2018).
What did he do for an encore?
NEW CT MIRROR SERIES 2018
SMART PEOPLE ONLY
As we were saying, CT is in dire straits.
TWO OTHER ENTITIES MENTIONED IN THIS EVENT:
Joe Brennan a member:
Stanley Black & Decker on this one:
PETER GIOIA INTRODUCES...
C.B.I.A. Joe Brennan and Donald Allen Jr. of Stanley Black & Decker
Private sector leadership. Fiscal Stability & Economic
Growth. Tariffs hurt. Engaging workers young & old.
Beyond The Engine Backlog - panel
Take a job that will carry over 40 years. 80% of profit
reinvested. Wave coming. Take a long term view (unless you
have a rich uncle).
WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT...and by the way here is a link to the Economic Competitiveness Commission that hasn't met all year.
BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME DEPARTMENT:
Governor made a point that residents next door to Milford Town beach
have WC facilities plus they can go home and return easily. He
didn't suggest sharing facilities w/State Park next door.
B O N D I N G C O M M I S S I O N S P R E E 1 1 - 2 9 - 1 7
Hey no problem.
In under an hour, Connecticut spends on XL Center, $500 million on
delayed school constructions...under new spending cap. Rep. Davis
votes "no" on those items he feels are "wants" and not "needs."
Capital funds now sucking up operating funds?
BOND COMMISSION GOES TO TOWN TUESDAY?
Whoever the next Governor is he or she should take a few workshops in panhandling...
LAW SCHOOL SYMPOSIUM ON BANKRUPTCY - SOME OF PRESENTERS AT FIRST
PANEL...AND THEN CT-N CUT AWAY TO HEAR ABOUT "THE DEAL". SPEAKING OF DEALS, THE ARTICLE TO READ ON THAT SUBJECT.
And the latest news: http://www.ctnewsjunkie.com/archives/entry/wall_street_sends_connecticut_a_warning_10_13_2017/
The Capitol City to go bust? Implications for everyone of the 169 towns in CT? Regions?
NO ONE IS PAYING ATTENTION TO THIS.
Legislators most sensitive to the needs of those they can hear from at
or out the window of the Capitol...what deficit? Moody's thoughts, April 26th article in the Courant
"The legislative session ended Wednesday with no agreement on a new
state budget and no certainty on whether Hartford would get the tens of
millions of dollars in additional aid it needs to avoid insolvency..."
Above opening line in the Courant Session wrap story today: http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/hc-hartford-aid-in-limbo-20170607-story.html
Above the prospect of increased job opportunities in defense industry.
Well, we started to outline our ideas for fixing CT's financial mess, but decided not to put it online for two reasons:
- Nobody cares what About Town thinks anyway;
- Our views make assumptions that those in the political establishment would not find acceptable.
Surprise! AFSCME in Hartford doesn't agree to do what it is claimed it had agreed to do: http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/hc-hartford-union-deal-failed-20170519-story.html
How about the end run around new Federal Law?
This is a loophole waiting for income redistribution advocates to grab a hold of???
That new state tax bill, which Malloy has not signed into law yet,
allows municipalities in Connecticut to create “community supporting
organizations” classified as charitable organizations. Taxpayers would
make “contributions” to these organizations that are credited toward
their tax liability. Since there is no cap on charitable donations in
the new tax law, this would allow Connecticut taxpayers to avoid the
$10,000 cap on SALT tax deductibility."
How about this good news - but no one wants to give credit to the new federal tax law...
CT Finances like the Board of Ed Budget in Weston - all
but a few hundred thousand dollars to teachers, administrator and
contracted work. Where was the Speaker employed again"
"...Almost two-thirds of the state’s $18 billion General
Fund involves costs that largely are fixed by contract or federal rules,
such as employee wages and benefits — including pensions and retirement
health care — the Medicaid program and payments on bonded debt.
"And of the little more than $6 billion that’s left, about $3 billion goes to cities and towns as grants.
"So how do you close annual deficits of $2.3 billion and $2.8
billion with spending cuts — without gutting municipal aid, something
legislators from neither party nor Gov. Dannel P. Malloy have done since
he took office in 2011?
"Further complicating matters, a dozen of the state’s poorest
communities receive about half the total of the largest grant program,
the $2 billion Education Cost Sharing program, which helps fund local
"So how do legislators avoid major state tax hikes without cutting local aid — and not just grants to the wealthy towns?
"And if legislators do cut aid to most communities, will their legislators still want to provide something extra for Hartford?
“'From Day One I have felt and still feel if we are not helping
towns in general, then it will be very, very difficult to ask for the
support we need,' Fonfara said..."
(One part of a longer article in CT MIRROR 5-15-17)
CONNECTICUT STATE TREASURER DENISE NAPPIER AT BOND COMMISSION THINKS TO HERSELF...SO WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO OUR BOND RATING AFTER TODAY?
punts until after Mother's Day to fess up to what a mess we're in - and
oops we shouldn't have bonded for more? But those of us who have
memory of past similar events know that Bond Commission action can be
About Town said, in a column some time ago, that the solution was to
have a extra state-wide property tax of two (2) mills to cover what may
or may not come from the C.C.J.E.F. lawsuit appeal. Please
remember that the very same people who are now complaining about not
receiving money from Hartford ("aid to towns") are the same people
(mostly) who started the C.C.J.E.F. lawsuit in the first place.
Including Governor Malloy when he was Mayor of Stamford!
A February 2017 article of this subject: http://www.csg.org/pubs/capitolideas/enews/issue65_3.aspx
"Zero" is the right number for urban renewal...when imputed cost of wasted time by government included...
But that was quick:
Wall Street agency warns CT budgets will be bleak for years
By: Keith M. Phaneuf | April 5, 2017 https://ctmirror.org/2017/04/05/wall-street-agency-warns-ct-budgets-will-be-bleak-for-years-to-come/
The Moody's report here: https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3536536-Moody-s-Paper.html
CT MIRROR 2017 SERIES "THE LEGACY OF DEBT"
Cities can do it, States can't; and other Entities can - what's
the story now in 2017 and beyond? WHAT IS THE RULE IN CT FOR BONDED INDEBTEDNESS OF MUNICIPALITIES?
An idea come again for the 50 States? http://abcnews.go.com/Business/state-bankruptcy-change-life-public-pensioners-bond-holders/story?id=12732137
We began this sub-page some years ago - below an updating of sorts, and simplification:
CITIES AND TOWNS
IN THE U.S.A.; HARTFORD, CT, SOMEDAY
SOON? HOW ABOUT THE POST OFFICE? Social Security? Did we leave any entity out?
In 2009, we knew all about this crisis
- and Dionne Warwick asks "Do you know the way
to San Jose?" It was at this time that one whole county was underwater as well as a few communities.
ON THE 13 FINANCIALLY SICKEST AMERICAN CITIES (from a few years ago): These geographical areas updated: Nice simple graphic. For most recent news: How about all 50 States? Research summary: http://mercatus.org/sites/default/files/Norcross-State-Fiscal-Condition-summary.pdf
Illinois - you don't want to know.
Michigan: "Hybrid pension plan" development - other States and cities and towns watching...and remember - don't drink the water in Flint.
Detroit Looks to Health Law to Ease Costs
By MONICA DAVEY and ABBY GOODNOUGH
As Detroit enters the federal bankruptcy process, the city
is proposing a controversial plan for paring some of the $5.7 billion it owes
in retiree health costs: pushing many of those too young to qualify for
Medicare out of city-run coverage and into the new insurance markets that will
soon be operating under the Obama health care law...
Pennsylvania and how it relates to Illinois;
PUERTO RICO 2019
"Promesa" - https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/14/business/puerto-rico-bankruptcy-promesa.html
Paragraph noting how this might affect CT:
"...That has turned Puerto Rico into something of a test case. Although
cities and municipalities — most notably Detroit in 2013 — have declared
bankruptcy, states are not eligible to do so. But a number of them are
dealing with serious financial problems because of pension costs.
"A combination of inadequate funding over the decades, a wave of
retiring baby boomers and the lingering effects of the 2008 financial
crisis has forced states to reduce benefits, increase funding or both.
But a few states — including Illinois, New Jersey, Kentucky, Connecticut
and Colorado — are still far behind, and more drastic measures may be
tempting if Puerto Rico can provide a road map to recovery."
Rico - not a State, but close. And research/stories below:
FACTS - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Title_11_of_the_United_States_Code
Not facts - ct - http://ctmirror.org/2016/05/20/ct-lawmakers-advocates-open-to-new-puerto-rico-bill/
Not facts - D.C. -http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/oct/2/puerto-rico-rebuilding-must-be-accompnies-by-econo/
Atlantic City? Hartford? Who pays for Hartford sewer service since they have a long history of regional governance? And yet another twist.
California the Independent State of Fruits and Nuts
Out for the count? Or is the solution to pass the debt back down the chain to a level of government that CAN go bankrupt?
But, since there is no level of government between State and locality
in CT (counties do not exist except on maps), that requires voluntary
revenue or Grand List sharing to pay for mandated activities that are
unfunded??? Hartford AFSCME article: http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/hc-hartford-union-deal-failed-20170519-story.html
DO YOU THINK FRIDAY AFTERNOON IS A GOOD TIME TO ANNOUNCE JUNE BUDGET FREEZE AND ROLL BACK? READ THE LAST LINE!
May 12, 2017
HOW ABOUT OUR CAPITOL CITY? http://www.courant.com/community/hartford/hc-hartford-unused-sick-vacation-payouts-20170504-story.html
Watch toward the end of a long Tri-Board Meeting for a former First Selectman!
TWO EXAMPLES OF WHAT IS ON THE TABLE IN 2017...ACIR TO THE RESCUE? Mayor of Hartford brings tin cup to Legislature...as a draft board once said, "You can bleed, too."
"NON DESCRIPT ROAD" MEANS IT LOOKS LIKE WESTON, PERHAPS? MORE RATS DESERTING THE GOOD SHIP CT? BRING IT ON WITH REGIONAL COST SHARING? Higher minimum wage, too, since these are the new jobs.
THE BANKRUPTCY STORY OR NOT - what's new? And then there is this: http://ctmirror.org/2016/05/02/malloy-democrats-bring-very-different-perspectives-to-budget-crisis/
‘We really don’t have a deficit.’
“I think there are some real aspects to [the deficit,] and
then I think there are all kinds of muddied aspects to it,” Malloy told
The Mirror during an interview last week.
When the legislature’s nonpartisan Office of Fiscal
Analysis projects a $1.37 billion hole in 2015-16 finances, more than
$300 million of that is an inflationary adjustment.
But Malloy said state agencies routinely are asked to make do without any inflationary funding bump.
Similarly, analysts count some mandated increases in town aid that legislatures and governors routinely waive year-after-year.
OFA counts contractually obligated pay raises for workers,
but doesn’t consider that the governor might freeze vacant posts to
offset those costs.
The governor insists these and other efficiencies can whittle away three-quarters of the projected shortfall.
As far as the remainder, less than $400 million in red ink,
“I have dealt with that size problem throughout my political career,”
said Malloy, who served 14 years as Stamford’s mayor. through 2009.
“We really don’t have a deficit,” he said. “I know that’s hard to believe.”
He's right. The governor’s critics, both on the left and the right, don’t believe it.
“What a sad commentary,” said petitioning candidate
Jonathan Pelto, a Mansfield Democrat and former state representative.
“He’s not functioning in the same economic world that the rest of us
live in...” From CT MIRROR April 8, 2014.
Bully bully pulpit story, 2016 DNC Convention; scary stuff: http://ctmirror.org/2016/07/26/analysis-ct-bond-premiums-grow-debt-by-550m-since-2011/
ANY "SMART" IDEAS?
CT 169 towns, plus special
- Hasta la vista "Green Bank?"
- How about
- "Special Taxing
Districts" could go belly-up, too!
- Why CT doesn't have the
cities anymore - because the Census Bureau has regionalized them (i.e.
number 3 in highest
taxes as a state!
- Bank failure an indicator?
RATING AGENCIES' ROLE:
Many big cities face serious pension debt, report says
By Michael A. Fletcher, Published: September 26, 2013
Most of the 50 local governments with the largest
pension debt have worker retirement liabilities that are greater than
their annual tax revenue, according to a new report from the
credit-rating firm Moody’s.
The pension burden posed by current and future
municipal retirees is significant and apparently troublesome for many
local governments, the report said. Others, including Washington, D.C.,
have liabilities that appear manageable. The report was issued the
same day that Detroit’s emergency manager, Kevyn Orr, indicated that he
wanted to freeze the city’s pension plans and move workers into
Under the freeze, retirees would still collect pensions
but current employees could not accrue further benefits, and some
cost-of-living adjustments would end, according to news reports. The
freeze must be approved by Michigan’s treasurer and could come under
legal challenge because of prohibitions in that state’s constitution
against trimming pension payments. The move in Detroit, which
filed for bankruptcy in July, came after an auditor’s report found that
the city’s pension system made questionable bonus payments to retirees.
The Moody’s report found that other than Detroit, the
most severely underfunded local government entities were in the Chicago
area, which is also in the state that has the nation’s most severely
underfunded pension system...
GOVERNOR MALLOY UNIFIES CT
Connecticut economy ‘moving sideways’
By Luther Turmelle, The Register Citizen
Posted: 06/14/16, 6:09 PM EDT | Updated: 9 hrs ago
“'...The real question we need to be asking is what tools are
available to stimulate Connecticut’s economy, where is the organic
growth going to come from?' a quote from CT economist - Story in