When is enough….enough?

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Soon, the State of Connecticut (one of just ten states that have “bottle bills”) will implement a new bottle deposit rate of 10 cents on a variety of beverages. For every container not redeemed, that revenue is shared between distributors and the state. As of the new year, many new beverage types – including juices, teas, coffees, sports drinks, energy drinks, and hard seltzers – are now included.

The state income tax was implemented in 1991. The Lottery has been around well before the state income tax, but since 1991, the state has implemented new and clever ways to increase our taxes. Casino gambling, Keno, sports betting, new taxes on an array of goods and services previously not taxed e.g. cable TV, car washes, dry cleaning and dog grooming services to name a few. Now, in its lust for new revenue, the state has legalized the sale of cannabis. According to the January 2022 issue of the North Central CT News, “50% of all licenses of each type will go to social equity candidates with the goal of helping communities and demographics negatively impacted by the war on drugs”. So, the state is legalizing the sale of drugs in order to combat the war on drugs? Let that sink in.

Let’s not forget the other state and local taxes we all live with, gasoline taxes, sales taxes, real estate and auto property taxes, auto registration and license fees etc. OK, with all of these new and innovative ways to tax us, CT should be in great fiscal shape, right? Well, no, not by a long shot. CT consistently ranks in the ten worst fiscally run states in the country. Whether it’s debt per capita, unfunded state pensions, unfunded state retiree health benefits, unfunded teacher’s pensions, we’re on the bottom of the pile. As of November 2022, The Connecticut Mirror (January 20, 2023) reports the state has $88.3 billion in long-term, unfunded liabilities. See pie chart below.

I love my town and I love this state. Isn’t it time we elected fiscally responsible candidates to our state and federal government? D, R or I, let’s elect officials that make this a priority.

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