Press release from state Rep. Chris Wright:
REP. WRIGHT VOTED FOR MITIGATION PLAN
THAT CLOSES BUDGET GAP
Package relies on cuts and no tax increases to maintain 2009 budget
State Representative Christopher Wright (D-Bristol) voted on Wednesday in favor of the $1.2 billion Democrat deficit mitigation package that nearly eliminates the projected deficit for the current fiscal year through a series of cuts and other adjustments without any tax or fee increases.
The bill was passed unanimously in the House 140-0 and in the Senate by a 23-12 vote.
The approved package saves $200 million more than the amount proposed under the governor’s mitigation plan, particularly in the area of off-budget accounts. Lawmakers said the identification of this additional savings will allow the state to continue to help protect seniors, the disabled and working-class families from onerous cuts that were proposed under the governor’s plan.
“It is vital to maintain services for the very Bristol families who need it the most during these increasingly difficult financial times,” Rep. Wright said. “We cannot allow additional pain and sacrifice to be imposed on the working families in our state – not at a time like this.”
The governor’s cuts would have discontinued payments for non-formulary drugs under Medicare Part D. Her proposal also limited emergency visits for low-income adults for dental care under Medicare Part D. Both programs were saved by majority Democrats.
One provision also creates a new benefit that will save about 35,000 ConnPACE clients at least $1,200 per year, ensure they are eligible for prescription and health benefits, while also saving the state $4 million per year.
The deficit mitigation package includes $373.3 million from the federal stimulus package, $281.7 million from the state’s rainy day fund, and combines proposals from both Democrats and Republicans.
“We still have a very long way to go,” Rep. Wright said. “However, the passage of the mitigation package is a major step forward.
Rep. Wright is serving his first term in the General Assembly representing Bristol’s 77th District.
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