2018 Potentially Pivotal

The combination of a growing state deficit, an election year, and the business sector perception that there is no long term vision for the management of Connecticut state government could lead to fundamental changes in the coming year. Or, none at all.

There is a growing consensus among observers of Connecticut government that the main threat to the state's economy is the sense in the private sector that the state legislature is lurching from crisis to crisis and has been for years. With this as background there is incentive for the legislature to make an effort to send signals that it is willing to commit to a more thoughtful approach.

One of the first tests will come next month when Governor Malloy presents his final budget proposal. He is expected to offer lawmakers a clear eyed forecast of the challenges state government faces and offer some very difficult choices about how to deal with them. At the same time, a legislatively created commission is expected to put forward recommendations by March 1 that will be described as necessary, but politically unpopular.

Which way the legislature decides to go is a policy decision that could make 2018 pivotal for the state's economy.