HARTFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP)Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and his Republican challenger, businessman Tom Foley, addressed leaders of Connecticut’s cities and towns Tuesday.

Both candidates spoke at the annual convention of the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities in Hartford. Representatives from more than 120 municipalities were expected to attend the event.

As WCBS 880’s Paul Murnane reported, Foley told municipal leaders he would cap property taxes with no cuts to state aid, while Malloy said budgets have not been balanced on backs of communities under his leadership.

But speaking to reporters, the nasty back-and-forth over the release of tax returns had Foley charging that the governor was on the run from his record.

“Why doesn’t he want to talk about the fact that private-sector wages on a real basis have declined?” Foley said.

Said Malloy: “He, by the way, I’ll remind you, months ago said, ‘If I release my tax retuns, he would release his tax returns. That’s a promise that he has not kept.”

Malloy and Foley have released tax summaries.

In an interview with Murnane before the event, Quinnipiac University Political Science Professor Scott McLean said the race so far has been all about defining the opposition, he said.

“Tom Foley has defined himself in terms that are opposite of Dannel Malloy, but he doesn’t really supply too many specifics about what he would do if he were governor,” McLean said.

With two weeks remaining until Election Day, the campaigns are largely focused on voter turnout now, the professor added.

“Democrats think with their registration advantage in the state and a great ground game in the cities that they’re going to win,” McLean said. “Republicans are expecting that there’s going to be a strong anti-Malloy vote.”

Besides the appearances by Malloy and Foley, the convention includes workshops on public policy issues.

Kevin Maloney, spokesman for the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities, told WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau that the biggest issue facing municipal leaders is “the ability of towns to pay for the ever-increasing costs for local, public education.”

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