The $13.8 million in unclaimed bottle deposits that Gov. M. Jodi Rell and some lawmakers sought to claim won’t be on the table Monday as the General Assembly considers closing the state’s $300 million budget deficit.
After exiting the caucus where Democrats debated using the unclaimed bottle deposits to close some of the 2009 deficit, Rep. Chris Caruso, D-Bridgeport, said the issue will come up again when the legislature convenes in regular session this January, but it was scrapped for Monday’s special session.
Senate President Donald Williams, D-Brooklyn, confirmed the development.
“Unfortunately it won’t be going forward today,” Williams said, adding that he would like to see it happen during the regular legislative session because it could potentially bring another $30 million in revenue to the state.
He said there was significant opposition to the idea in both the House and the Senate, but he thinks it probably would have passed in the Senate.
“What’s disappointing is that any cuts we do not make now mean we’ll have to cut that much deeper next year,” Williams said.
“If we’re not willing to take a vote today on the unclaimed bottle deposits, then I don’t know how we’re going make the tough choices that we’re going to have to make in the next two years,” Senate Minority Leader John McKinney, R-Southbury, said.
“We can’t afford the government we have now,” McKinney said.