Connecticut was ranked 43rd in the nation based on its tax structure by the Tax Foundation, an independent tax policy research organization. During a presentation on their findings, Joe Henchman, one of the three authors of the study, noted that Connecticut’s tax policies have become unnecessarily burdensome. He notes that although Connecticut started off with an income tax with a relatively low rate “the state has piled complexity upon complexity," into its tax code.
A leaked draft bill proposes to do away with municipal health departments and combine them into county districts, effectively regionalizing towns and cities in all matters related to public health. The legislation would form county health districts and force suburban and rural towns into cost-sharing with cities. The draft plan requires each municipality to contribute 1.5 percent of their budget in order to receive state health funding and grants.
An independent arbitrator sided with the town of West Hartford last month in a dispute between the town and the police union over whether overtime pay can be included in pension calculations for officers who retire with 25 to 30 years of service. The decision, issued on August 29, held that pensions for officers hired under the 2006 union contract would be calculated using "average base pay," which excludes overtime compensation.
A public hearing about the practices of the Commission of Human Rights and Opportunity before the General Assembly's investigation committee was packed with visibly angry Connecticut property owners wearing neon green stickers that read “Fair Housing Lacks Due Process.” Bob De Cosmo, manager of Tenant Tracks, a Waterbury based tenant screening company, says Connecticut rental property owners have a legitimate grievance and a right to fair treatment by the CHRO. “We’re trying to get some fairness back into this process in housing,” De Cosmo said. “When you’re accused of violating any of the fair housing laws, you’re up against a stiff challenge to clear your name and get out."
Connecticut was labelled a “sinkhole state” and placed 49th in the nation based on its financial issues and taxpayer burden in the annual Financial State of the States report by Truth in Accounting, a government accounting think tank. The unfunded pension and healthcare liabilities were the largest factors of debt in determining Connecticut’s ranking.
The Securities and Exchange Commission censured the town of Fairfield last month for failing to file timely financial reports and disclose that information in their bond offering documents. Fairfield told investors that it had only been late on its 2009 and 2010 reports. According to the SEC, “this was materially misleading because Respondent filed its fiscal 2006, 2007, and 2008 audited financial statements by 1,384, 1,017, and 652 days late, respectively.” The SEC goes on to say that the Town of Fairfield “knew or should have known that this statement was untrue.”