Lawmakers see budget savings opportunity with contract talks

Lawmakers see budget savings opportunity with contract talks.

Photo Courtesy: MGNonline

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Some elected officials believe there’s opportunity for possible budget savings from Connecticut’s state employees.

Contracts with 12 of 13 state unions expire June 30, 2016. Talks have already begun or are about to begin in the coming weeks.

Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has warned these will be “very tough negotiations” regarding wages and working conditions.

Both Democratic and Republican lawmakers have floated numerous labor-related budget savings ideas in recent weeks as they’ve discussed how to cover this year’s budget deficit and future fiscal problems.

But those ideas face hurdles, including a pension and health benefit agreement that doesn’t expire until 2022 and the unions would have to agree to reopen. Also, a new contract for state police with raises might set precedent for other bargaining units.

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