News release from city’s legislative delegation:
The city of Bridgeport is slated to receive $3.1 million in supplemental car tax reimbursement money after the Bridgeport legislative delegation fought to secure the release of the funds from the state Office of Policy and Management.
The funding announcement comes after lawmakers representing Bridgeport, Hamden and Torrington expressed concern over the amount of motor vehicle tax reimbursements allocated to each of the three cities. The three communities were facing a motor vehicle tax reimbursement shortfall of more than $10 million collectively.
A fundamental tenet of the bipartisan budget, Public Act 17-4, that passed last year was that municipalities with car tax rates above 39 mils–the state mandated car tax cap for 2018–would be made whole for the difference between the cap and the higher tax rate.
To help make the municipalities whole, the Office of Policy and Management is releasing $5 million from the stabilization fund dedicated for car tax reimbursements.
State Reps. Andre Baker, Jack Hennessy, Ezequiel Santiago, Steve Stafstrom and Chris Rosario, and state Sens. Ed Gomes and Marilyn Moore said this funding will help steady the city’s bottom line.
“During this time of tough budgetary challenges, it is crucial for the Bridgeport legislative delegation to stand together and ensure Bridgeport receives its fair share of funding. The Bridgeport delegation worked hard with lawmakers from Torrington and Hamden to secure $5 million in supplemental car tax reimbursement money. This money should help Bridgeport balance the current year’s budget and ensure that taxpayers will not have to bear an additional burden. As an Alliance District, it is vital that we maintain state funding. We hope that this additional state funding allows Bridgeport to stabilize the tax rate and prioritize making needed investments in city service and education,’ the Bridgeport legislative delegation said.
“I’m very grateful for the hard work and combined efforts of the Bridgeport legislative delegation for fighting for this critical funding for our city to be released. This will more accurately reflect motor vehicle taxes based on updated property values in Bridgeport that took a hit as a result of the Great Recession. In a very difficult budget year it is critical to capture every dollar that our taxpayers deserve. Thanks again to Bridgeport’s strong delegation and to legislative leadership for standing up for what is right for the 147,000 residents of our city,” said Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim.
Bridgeport, Hamden and Torrington each underwent property tax revaluations in 2015 or later, and each municipality saw tax rate increases of more than 4 mils. With each community having tax rates above 39 mils, the municipalities needed the reimbursement money to be made whole.