Connecticut's state budget deadlock took a surprise turn after the Senate and House approved a bipartisan tax and spending package.

Democrats in both chambers joined all Republicans in supporting a two-year, $40.7 billion GOP budget plan Friday and early Saturday.

CBIA CEO Joe Brennan
"This is what businesses asked for." CBIA president and CEO Joe Brennan reacts to the state budget vote.

CBIA president and CEO Joe Brennan applauded Senate and House members for acting on the budget after months of uncertainty.

"Earlier this week, we laid out what a state budget needed to put Connecticut on a new path forward," Brennan said.

"The budget approved by the Senate and House includes much-needed long-term structural reforms and addresses the increasing costs of state government.

"This is what businesses asked for: a stronger spending cap, stricter limits on state borrowing, required votes on union contracts, and further changes to the state employee retirement system.

"Connecticut gets the best results when both parties work together, particularly in critical times like this that demand a bipartisan solution."

Difficult Choices

The Senate passed the budget 21-15 late Friday afternoon, with three Democrats—senators Paul Doyle (D-Wethersfield), Joan Hartley (D-Waterbury), and Gayle Slossberg (D-Milford)—joining all Republicans.

The House followed about 3 am Saturday morning, approving the budget 77-73 after a lengthy debate.

All Republicans and Democratic representatives Pat Boyd (D-Pomfret), John Hampton (D-Simsbury), Lonnie Reed (D-Branford), Kim Rose (D-Milford), and Daniel Rovero (D-Killingly) voted for the budget bill.

Connecticut gets the best results when both parties work together, particularly in critical times like this.
— CBIA's Joe Brennan
"We recognize that state lawmakers face very difficult choices with the budget," Brennan said.

"While this budget package is not perfect, it does represent the best opportunity to close the deficit and put Connecticut on a more sustainable fiscal path."

The budget now goes to Gov. Dannel Malloy, who issued a statement after the Senate vote that he would veto the bill.

"If the responsible solution I negotiated with Democrats isn't going to pass, then it is incumbent on the legislature to reach a new agreement soon—one that is realistic and, ideally, bipartisan," the governor said in his statement.