HARTFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP)– By next year, the ever-rising budget in Connecticut could easily reach half a billion dollars and two years after that, as high as $4 billion.

Some state lawmakers are now calling for tough measures to end this spending. State Sen. Scott Frantz of Greenwich says the only way to stop the red ink is to stop borrowing and deal with the hard facts. He says, given the situation, state workers cannot continue to receive raises.

“I don’t know exactly what the outcome will be but I’ll tell you what I hope it is, is that the governor wakes up and recognizes what a terrible situation we’re in fiscally and opens up the contracts with the government workers and calls for some real cutbacks,” Frantz told WCBS 880’s Fran Schneidau.

Frantz notes these contracts have gone unchecked for the past five years. Another hike in taxes, he says, will see a continuing exodus of businesses in Connecticut.

A spokesman for Gov. Dannel Malloy said he will not unveil any new taxes next week during his budget announcement.

“The governor is not proposing tax increases, nor will he support them,” Devon Puglia, Malloy’s spokesman, told The Hartford Courant. “This is a tough budget that will require a different solution.”

Office of Policy and Management Secretary Ben Barnes said in a letter to the State Comptroller earlier this month that the $18 billion general fund may have a $7.1 million deficit when the fiscal year ends June 30.

State estimates show that revenues are down $26.8 million as of mid-January. Revenue from the personal income tax took the biggest hit.

Barnes says the $26.8 million loss was partially offset by $19.7 million worth of savings from reduced spending including cutting back on hiring new employees.

(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

 

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