- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 4, 2019

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - The Latest on the state budget (all times local):

9:55 p.m.

Connecticut lawmakers are sending a two-year, $43 billion Democratic state budget to Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont’s desk.

Tuesday’s 20-16 vote in the Senate comes a day before the General Assembly is scheduled to adjourn its regular legislative session at midnight Wednesday. The bill already cleared the House of Representatives.

In both chambers the vote was mostly along party lines, a departure from two previous years of bipartisan budgets when Republicans held more seats.



While Democratic senators say this new plan includes many ideas from those bipartisan agreements, Republicans criticized it for increasing taxes, spending and borrowing. Senate Republican Leader Len Fasano says the Democrats’ plan goes “in an opposite direction” of the bipartisan budgets.

He criticizes the majority Democrats for not involving the Republicans in the budget negotiations.

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2:40 p.m.

The Connecticut Senate has begun debating a proposed two-year, $43 billion Democratic budget.

The Democratic-controlled chamber was expected Tuesday to approve the deal finalized between legislative leaders and Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont. It was approved Monday by the House of Representatives.

Republican Senate Leader Len Fasano, of North Haven, had unsuccessfully urged Democrats to postpone the vote. He says the legislation includes more than $450 million in state employee pension and health care cost savings, but “without any guarantees that these savings will be agreed to and approved by state employee unions.”

Democrats disagreed with Fasano’s argument that the unions should have approved the pension payment restructuring plan before Tuesday’s budget vote.

Democratic Sen. Cathy Osten, of Sprague, is praising the budget for moving Connecticut “in the right direction.”

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1:16 p.m.

It’s now the Connecticut Senate’s turn to consider a proposed two-year, $43 billion Democratic budget.

The Democratic-controlled chamber was expected to vote Tuesday on the deal, finalized between legislative leaders and Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont.

The regular legislative session ends Wednesday at midnight.

Republican Senate Leader Len Fasano of North Haven is urging the Democrats to postpone the vote. He says the legislation includes more than $450 million in state employee pension and health care cost savings but “without any guarantees that these savings will be agreed to and approved by state employee unions.”

Fasano says the unions must agree to restructure the pension payment schedule and then the General Assembly needs to approve those changes before the budget is approved.

Lamont says there’s “no legal basis” for Fasano’s argument.

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