Lawmakers keep talking
Updated 4:51 pm, Friday, October 6, 2017
HARTFORD — Republican and Democratic leaders met through out the day Friday, inching closer to what could be the end of the longest budget stalemate in state history.
Talks finally broke off around 3:30, after Speaker of the House Joe Aresimowicz, had to resume his day job as football coach at nearby Berlin High School.
“It was a very good meeting,” House Minority Leader Themis Klarides, R-Derby, told reporters.
The lawmakers did not meet with Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, but sat in the House Democrats’ caucus room on the Capitol’s second floor for most of the day, reviewing similarities and differences in the two parties’ tax-and-spend plans for the fiscal year that began July 1.
At about 3:45, a joint statement was issued by Senate President Pro Tempore Martin M. Looney, D-New Haven, Aresimowicz, D-Berlin, Senate Republican Leader Len Fasano, R-North Haven, and Klarides.
“Today was a positive meeting with very serious negotiations and productive discussion,” they said. “We are making progress and plan to continue efforts to work together. Staff work and discussions will continue over the weekend.”
Kelly Donnelly, a spokesperson for the governor, also issued a statement.
“Time is of the essence, and a compromise must be reached in the very near future,” Donnelly said. “Should a balanced agreement not be reached, surely, it is the people of our state who will suffer the most. And to be clear, adopting a status quo budget — one that falls short of delivering real structural reform or one that is riddled with gimmicks and wishful thinking — would be as equally damaging.”
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