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Fairfielders Vent Frustrations With High Taxes

To say that Jeff Wright thinks that Connecticut’s spending has gotten out of control would be an understatement. The Trumbull resident pointed to the graph presented by state Sen. John McKinney in Fairfield on Saturday, charting a 240 percent increase in the state budget over the last 20 years, and had to say something. He pleaded with McKinney and the rest of Fairfield’s delegation in the General Assembly to trim the size of the government and avoid the proposed tax increases.

“We’re just running out of money,” Jeff said. “I know personally, in my household, I’m running out of money.”

Jeff was not alone. Saturday’s Town Hall meeting with McKinney, R-Fairfield, and state Reps. Brenda Kupchick, R-132, Kim Fawcett, D-133, and Tony Hwang, R-134, filled the Board of Education’s conference room with concerned Fairfielders. Many residents offered suggestions to the legislators, but the same two points arose throughout the afternoon: Connecticut’s government spends too much money, and taxes are too high.

Ellen Jacobs, a Fairfield resident, challenged Gov. Dannell Malloy’s proposal to increase sales tax and raise taxes on gas and for services such as hotel stays. She voiced a concern that many at the meeting had: that taxes would drive businesses and people out of the state. “The list goes on and on,” Ellen said. “You are killing the golden goose.”

The legislators pledged to take a hard stance on the budget talks and to look at every possible way to make budget cuts. But none took up the challenge posed by Fairfield’s Bob MacGuffie, who asked them to refuse to vote for any tax increases. McKinney said it would not be fair to step into negotiations with Malloy with any measure off the table.

McKinney encouraged Wright and other voters to attend Malloy’s Town Hall meetings across the state, and Fairfield’s own follow-up on March 24 at Fairfield Ludlowe High School. He added, “I think if you let people’s voices be heard, and we’re going to end up with the budget that’s best for the people of Connecticut.”

What do you think Fairfield’s state representatives should do about state spending? Vent your own frustrations in the comments below.

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