State budget talks continue to heat up

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HARTFORD --  Alarm bells went off at the state capitol Wednesday morning as legislative Democratic leaders gave an update on Connecticut's steadily deteriorating fiscal situation.

"We are going to undo 20 years of policy in a matter of days when it comes to settling this budget," said Democrat State Representative and Speaker of the House, Joe Aresimowicz.

After a meeting of legislative leaders with Gov. Malloy on May 2, the consensus has emerged that drastic action must be taken immediately and tough calls are coming.

Aresimowicz added, "Priorities that we've had in the state of Connecticut are going to shift to what we think we have to provide to the state of Connecticut, not what we want to provide. This is difficult. It's hard."

Everything, according to leadership is on the table, ranging from recreational marijuana, tolls, higher taxes and even a proposed third Connecticut casino, are all open to consideration with the hopes of generating more state revenue.

Connecticut's books got slammed after recent revised projections showed the state is facing a more than $4 billion dollar deficit as well as hundreds of millions in lower than expected tax revenue. Another major piece of the puzzle is state labor unions making concessions to the tune of $700 million dollars.

Republican Deputy Leader and State representative, Vincent Candelabra, said, "We're seeing a decline in revenues because people are walking so certainly it's showing that we need to cut spending and as part of that the unions need to come to the table."