STATE LEGISLATIVE NEWS The 2019 Connecticut legislative session is open. We have a new Governor and a largely new legislature. Twenty percent of the 151member House Chamber are freshmen legislators and 7 of the 25 member Senate Chamber are freshman. We must take extra care to meet and educate our local legislators, especially the newly elected officials, on issues affecting our industry. Please reach out to us if there are state regulations or codes that are impacting your business so that we are aware of any challenges and can advocate effectively on your behalf. Your membership supports lobbyists in Hartford to be your voice but we need to hear from you. Click here to find your legislator JANUARY 2019 | HBRA of Fairfield County 29 CBIA issues policy priorities for this year’s legislative session The state’s largest business lobby, the Connecticut Business & Industry Association, has issued a list of 12 policy priorities for this legislative session, ranging from taxes and economic development to transportation and regulatory reform. “We are encouraged that Gov. (Ned) Lamont is emphasizing certain things critical to employers in Connecticut — the importance of growth, a bold approach to budget fixes and committing to solving our fiscal problems once and for all,” CBIA president and CEO Joe Brennan. Brennan said lawmakers must significantly reduce the cost of operating state agencies and delivering services by tapping private providers and aggressively adopting best private sector practices to improve service delivery. Noting that Connecticut’s private-sector job creation accelerated in the last 12 months and the latest GDP numbers show consecutive quarters of expansion, the organization’s Vice President of Government Affairs Eric Gjede said, “The state’s economy and providing greater fiscal stability have to be the top priorities. Obviously, anything the governor can do to negotiate more affordable public sector retirement and health benefits is key to providing that stability.” Gjede also warned that across-the-board mandates such as raising the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour and paid family and medical leave could slow Connecticut’s recent economic growth. The CBIA’s 2019 Policy Priorities include: State Spending – Adopt a new two-year budget that closes any deficits without inhibiting economic growth; use more nonprofit health and service providers that supply quality services at lower cost; cut waste and implement Lean processes in the largest state agencies; and adopt the latest cost-saving collective bargaining reforms from the Commission on Fiscal Stability and Economic Growth. Tax – Enact specific reforms that will make Connecticut more competitive for jobs, including lowering the business personal property tax, liberalizing rules allowing the use of net operating losses, eliminating the business entity tax, lowering the top income tax rate, and repealing gift and estate taxes; maintain tax incentives for activities such as research and development that trigger economic growth; and reject expansion of the sales tax base or rates on business-to-business services. Read More

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