“The Order projects fixed costs will increase $800 million, or 9 percent, in FY2018, to $9.6 billion. Here’s the rub. If overall spending must be cut $800 million and fixed costs are rising $800 million, spending on “everything else” must be cut $1.6 billion. Well, spending on everything else was $9.6 billion in FY2017, so a $1.6 billion cut amounts to a whopping 17 percent reduction in all other government services.
“The real issue is not spending on overall ‘fixed costs,’ but rather spending in one subcategory, namely, state-employee benefits and the teachers’ pension fund, which is skyrocketing from $2.9 billion to $3.4 billion, or 18 percent. That $500 million is two-thirds of the total increase in ‘fixed costs.’ The $3.4 billion doesn’t include salary and wages for active employees, which are running very roughly $4.5 billion according to Malloy’s summary of the labor-deal extension that he negotiated and jammed through the assembly on a strict party-line vote. So, public-employee pay and benefits account for almost half of all state spending under the Order.”
|Author Don Pesci|