Holding significant advantages over Republicans going into the January legislative session–in the House 92-59 and Senate 23-13–Connecticut Democrats are pushing what they call a Big Five agenda: raising the minimum wage, paid family and medical leave, electronic highway tolls, approving sports betting and legalizing recreational marijuana, the latter three new revenue enhancers.
More on this from Chris Keating, Hartford Courant:
Lamont has repeatedly called for the legalization of recreational marijuana, but he said he has other immediate priorities when asked whether marijuana should be fast-tracked in Connecticut after retail sales recently started in Massachusetts.
“Look, my priority No. 1 is to get a budget, get people around that table, and get a budget that’s not meant to last for one year but a budget that helps us to have a blueprint for the next four and eight years,” Lamont said.
The two-year budget of more than $40 billion is expected to dominate the legislative session that starts when Lamont and legislators are sworn in on Jan. 9. Although the state’s rainy day fund is now expected to reach as high as $2.1 billion, the projected deficit in each of the next two years is expected to be at least $2 billion. The fiscal year that starts on July 1 is about $2 billion.
Full story here.