The voters of Connecticut need to pay special attention to Governor Dannel Malloy’s irresponsible proposal to change the way that Connecticut funds its pension program for state employees.
Governor Malloy’s plan is nothing more than an outrageous maneuver to balance his failed state budgets on the backs of our children and their future. As the title of yesterday’s Wait, What? blog stated – Connecticut: BEWARE of Governor Malloy’s most fiscally irresponsible budget proposal yet.
The CT Mirror’s Keith Phaneuf provides more information about Malloy’s proposals in his latest article, explaining that the new initiative violates one of the most fundamental promises Dannel Malloy made when he was running for governor in 2010.
“One year after taking office, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy vowed to accelerate payments into the state’s cash-starved pension fund, much as a family might make extra mortgage payments now to lessen balloon payments looming in future years.”
But not surprisingly, although Malloy pushed through significant tax increases in 2011 and 2015, he used the additional funds to pay for other things and never followed through on his commitment to make those extra pension payments.
Now, in the face of new state budget problems, Malloy is completely reversing his stand on properly funding Connecticut’s State pension fund and proposing “kicking the can” down the road by pushing off $8 billion in necessary pension payments onto the next generation of Connecticut taxpayers.
“Under the governor’s plan, Connecticut still would catch up on its pension contributions — after 2032.”
But as the CT Mirror reports, the Governor who seems unable to tell the truth denied reality, once again, claiming,
“We are not kicking anything down the road,” Malloy said, citing a phrase he and other gubernatorial candidates used in 2010 to describe the fiscal gimmicks that had weakened the pension system and created a record-setting state budget deficit at that time.
“It is simply irresponsible to leave more and more debt for future generations.” Malloy wrote in his 2010 campaign platform on “Taxes & The Budget.”
The governor insisted this week that it would be irresponsible to pretend state finances, and taxpayers, could afford a $6 billion-plus pension expense down the road.
Postponing some pension payments until later to avoid that fiscal iceberg is the best option, Malloy said, adding that his new plan would “smooth out” the late-term costs.”
However, the truth is that the real spike in the amount of money needed to meet the required pension payments – the real “iceberg” Malloy is referencing – does not occur this year, or next year or even the year after that.
The harsh reality is that Governor Malloy isn’t offering up this new pension funding plan because he is worried about whether the state can make its required pension payments in 2025, he is doing it NOW because he wants to use the money that we should be paying into the pension fund over the next few years to balance the state budgets during his remaining time in office.
This is not an issue of Democrats versus Republicans or Liberals versus Conservatives. Nor is it a debate about whether there should be addition changes to Connecticut’s state employee pension program.
This debate is about whether Connecticut will fulfill its financial obligations to the state pension fund or allow Dannel Malloy to divert that money to balance his state budgets and reduce the need for additional tax increases or budget cuts.
There will always be politicians like Dan Malloy who would rather dump problems on someone else rather than actually tackling the job of developing fair and honest balanced budgets.
That said, what is not be acceptable is allowing Malloy to resolve the mess he created by dumping the problem on our children.