As lawmakers debate raising Connecticut’s minimum wage to $15 per hour, one company says it will be forced to relocate out of state. FORUM Plastics, LLC of Waterbury, Connecticut employs 153 people, many of whom are paid minimum wage to manufacture plastics for medical device companies. “We want to stay, ...
Yankee Institute 2017 Legislative Agenda
2017 Legislative Focus
This year, Connecticut lawmakers have the opportunity to show that they are committed to bringing jobs and prosperity back to our state. That starts with saying “no” to another tax increase, and “yes” to dismantling the barriers that hobble job and economic growth.
Businesses and families need greater predictability and stability from their state government. That means the state must learn to live within its means – and that can only happen when the parts of government that are growing too fast are reined in and brought under control.
During the 2017 legislative session, the Yankee Institute will be working with legislators, state officials and stakeholders in the following areas:
- Eliminate barriers to jobs, such as unnecessary or onerous occupational licensing requirements.
- Reduce red tape for independent contractors and solo entrepreneurs.
- Exempt the first $10,000 of personal property from property tax for all businesses.
- Begin to bring public sector benefits more in line with private sector benefits through meaningful pension reform and retiree healthcare reform.
- Bring every collectively-bargained state employee contract up for a full vote of the House and Senate.
- Update the education funding formula so it is clear, fair, and child-centered.
- Reform the teacher pension system to bring costs under control so more money can reach the classroom.
- Pass a balanced budget without raising taxes.
- Fully enact the previously-adopted constitutional spending cap.
- Reform the estate tax to allow family-owned businesses to remain family owned, and encourage more of our wealthiest residents to retire in Connecticut.
Criminal Justice Reform
- Establish a fairer bail system focused on public safety.
- Eliminate civil asset forfeiture; allow the state and municipalities to confiscate private property only after a criminal conviction.
- Reduce state-imposed spending mandates that drive up municipal costs so that local leaders can be free to reduce property tax burdens on residents. Mandate relief should include binding arbitration reform, prevailing wage reform, and the elimination of the minimum budget requirement.
U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of the best states gave Connecticut an overall ranking of 21 but faulted the state’s infrastructure at a lowly 46 at a time when the legislature is set to debate and possibly pass highway tolls as a means to fund infrastructure projects. But there ...