U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) released the following statement about impending cuts due to automatic budget sequestration included in the Budget Control Act of 2011:
The so-called sequester is another sad example of governing at its worst--Congress has to stop taking people's jobs and our entire economy hostage to its own dysfunction. Friday's deadline will bring devastating cuts in critical services and job losses for Connecticut and across the country. I strongly opposed the legislation that set this process in motion, and strongly support legislation to prevent the damage that these reckless cuts will do to our still fragile economy. It's time for Congress to get over itself and work to make this right.
Yesterday, the White House released state by state reports on the devastating impact that budget sequestration will have on jobs and middle class families across the country.
If sequestration were to take effect, some examples of the impacts on Connecticut this year alone are:
- Teachers and Schools: Connecticut will lose approximately $8.7 million in funding for primary and secondary education, putting around 120 teacher and aide jobs at risk. In addition about 8,000 fewer students would be served and approximately 40 fewer schools would receive funding.
o Education for Children with Disabilities: In addition, Connecticut will lose approximately $6.3 million in funds for about 80 teachers, aides, and staff who help children with disabilities.
- Work-Study Jobs: Around 550 fewer low income students in Connecticut would receive aid to help them finance the costs of college and around 470 fewer students will get work-study jobs that help them pay for college.
- Head Start: Head Start and Early Head Start services would be eliminated for approximately 500 children in Connecticut, reducing access to critical early education.
- Protections for Clean Air and Clean Water: Connecticut would lose about $2 million in environmental funding to ensure clean water and air quality, as well as prevent pollution from pesticides and hazardous waste. In addition, Connecticut could lose another $398,000 in grants for fish and wildlife protection.
- Military Readiness: In Connecticut, approximately 3,000 civilian Department of Defense employees would be furloughed, reducing gross pay by around $15 million in total.
o Army: Base operation funding would be cut by about $1.6 million in Connecticut.
o Navy: Maintenance and repair of USS Providence and $13 million in funding for two demolition projects at New London could be canceled.
- Law Enforcement and Public Safety Funds for Crime Prevention and Prosecution: Connecticut will lose about $153,000 in Justice Assistance Grants that support law enforcement, prosecution and courts, crime prevention and education, corrections and community corrections, drug treatment and enforcement, and crime victim and witness initiatives.
- Job Search Assistance to Help those in Connecticut find Employment and Training:
Connecticut will lose about $242,000 in funding for job search assistance, referral, and placement, meaning around 10,650 fewer people will get the help and skills they need to find employment.
- Child Care: Up to 200 disadvantaged and vulnerable children could lose access to child care, which is also essential for working parents to hold down a job.
- Vaccines for Children: In Connecticut around 1,570 fewer children will receive vaccines for diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, whooping cough, influenza, and Hepatitis B due to reduced funding for vaccinations of about $107,000.
- Public Health: Connecticut will lose approximately $341,000 in funds to help upgrade its ability to respond to public health threats including infectious diseases, natural disasters, and biological, chemical, nuclear, and radiological events. In addition, Connecticut will lose about $840,000 in grants to help prevent and treat substance abuse, resulting in around 2500 fewer admissions to substance abuse programs. And the Connecticut State Department of Public Health will lose about $273,000 resulting in around 6,800 fewer HIV tests.
- STOP Violence Against Women Program: Connecticut could lose up to $76,000 in funds that provide services to victims of domestic violence, resulting in up to 300 fewer victims being served.
- Nutrition Assistance for Seniors: Connecticut would lose approximately $201,000 in funds that provide meals for seniors.