Connecticut Democratic Governor Ned Lamont is reported to be considering a 2 percent sales tax on groceries and medications, in an effort to reduce the state’s budget deficit. But some business leaders say such a plan would be hard to pass.
Eric Gjede, with the Connecticut Business and Industry Association, said the proposal would be difficult for Lamont to get through the state General Assembly.
“I think it is going to be deemed a pretty regressive tax by most of the people within his party, a lot of the Republicans as well. So I think that is going to be a tough road for him to go down.”
Joe McGee, with the Business Council of Fairfield County, said population growth is the key to solving Connecticut’s long-term budget deficits.
“Because we have flat growth in population, our labor force is not growing either. So that is the core issue here. And so tax revenue is tied to population, is tied to job creation. We have hundreds of thousands of jobs that cannot be filled in Fairfield County because we don’t have the labor pool to fill them.”
The proposal for a 2 percent tax on groceries and other exempt items is part of the recommendations made to Lamont by one of the study groups he set up during his transition.
The tax would probably generate a couple of hundred million dollars for state coffers each year.
Connecticut faces billion dollar budget deficits. Lamont is to present his first budget to lawmakers next month.