A Budget that Represents Our Values

Back • Publication Date: September 20th, 2017

Authors: Ray Noonan, Ellen Shemitz, J.D, Lauren Ruth, Ph.D.

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Connecticut's budget provides the clearest statement of its values and priorities. Our state's stalemate thus reflects long-running debates over what exactly those values and priorities should be. The intensity of the discussion and the passionate disagreements it has engendered demonstrate both the depth of our fiscal woes and the importance of the issues at hand.

No single party or faction has all the answers. At this point, compromise is necessary to move forward, and the only way to reach a compromise is to look to values shared by all involved. We believe that the state budget should be grounded in three guiding values:

  • Economic Growth: Connecticut's budget should promote increased prosperity for all its residents.

  • Equity: Connecticut's budget should help ensure that all residents have an equitable opportunity to thrive.

  • Structural Integrity: Connecticut's budget should ensure a sustainable, accountable, and independent government.

As lawmakers and the Governor gather again to continue negotiations, we urge them to return to these values, which have defined our priorities as a state. In our new policy brief, we highlight several policies from both budgets that are consistent with these values, mapping out a way forward for Connecticut.