Budget Debate Displays a Missed Opportunity for Leadership

Senate Leadership Kill Negotiations Agreed upon by the Governor and House

Burlington, VT  - Despite a unique budget surplus of more than $50 million - and more projected in the near future, the Chittenden County Senate delegation pushed through a budget that raises property taxes.

In response to Governor Scott’s announcement allowing the budget to become law without his signature, Alex Farrell, candidate for the State Senate issued the following statement:

“While I am thankful for the Governor's leadership and understand his decision, I am once again disappointed in the actions and votes of those elected to the Senate here in Chittenden County. They continuously vote in a block with no variation from the Party line. It’s time for Chittenden County to hear a different perspective, a pro-growth, and a pro-business perspective.

“Despite an agreement between Governor Phil Scott, House Speaker Mitzi Johnson and House Minority Leader Don Turner, Chittenden County Senator Tim Ashe and fellow Chittenden County Senators, derailed and blocked a deal that would have averted a possible Government shutdown and kept rates for residential taxpayers flat for another year, as well as provide 100 percent of the rate relief for non-residential payers over two years.

“The budget that passed, while a slight improvement from earlier budgets vetoed by the Governor, worsens the cost of living issues facing the everyday Vermonter. The increase in the non-residential rate will lead to increased rent and raise the cost of doing business in Vermont.

“While progress has been made in the last 2 years, the votes and positions of the Chittenden County Senate delegation continue to exacerbate the affordability crisis. This is my motivation to get to work as a State Senator. I look forward to turning my vision for an affordable Vermont into action in January and I ask for your vote.”