Reconvened council receives report on state budget

By TAYLOR MURCHISON-GALLAGHER

CORRESPONDENT

After a 35 day hiatus and the election of new members, the Plainville Town Council met on Monday night with many topics to be discussed, including a discussion by town manager, Robert E. Lee about the impact of the state budget in Plainville.

“The state budget, adopted by the legislature and signed by the governor, would reduce the state aid to Plainville by $1,033,720 from what was anticipated by the town council budget,” Lee reported. Lee said that the total reduction came to $1,904,005. “This is a reduction of 16.27 percent of what was anticipated in the spring as it relates to state aid.” These cuts will have fallout on the town, including the loss hundreds of thousands of dollars from the municipality’s Education Cost Sharing grant. Ninety-six percent of the cost reductions will be coming at the cost of education funds.

Joining Lee for the report was state Representative Dr. William Petit (R-Plainville, New Britain), who said that legislators were “really blindsided by the additional $91 million in cuts” that were announced by Gov. Dannel Malloy. Petit said the intention was to maintain as much ECS and municipal funding as possible, “given that we are facing a $5.1 billion.” Petit also said that moving forward the town may need to be more careful with how the budget is spent, as there may be further cuts.

The budget cuts also affect the Renters Rebate Program. Lee touched on how the program, once funded entirely by the state, now falls to the town. The program was set in place to assist the elderly and disabled, living on a minimal income, in order for them to have housing.