HARTFORD, CT — It’s been a week since Gov. Ned Lamont threatened to veto the Paid Family and Medical Leave bill approved by the Senate, and as of Wednesday morning House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz said the governor has offered no specifics as to how to resolve the conflict and get the bill passed.
“I don’t think we’re that far off,” Aresimowicz said Wednesday during a press conference in his Capitol office.
At the same time, he also admitted that he actually doesn’t know how far apart the two sides are in reaching an agreement.
“We’re just waiting on specifics for what the governor actually wants. I think it’s the board make-up and how they allocate the resources out to provide the program,” Aresimowicz said.
But he doesn’t necessarily know.
Aresimowicz said they’ve been floating different ideas regarding the make-up of the board that would run the quasi-public agency.
But why are they having to guess what Lamont actually wants?
Aresimowicz said the governor has not given them any language.
He said so if he was to veto it the General Assembly would have no clear indication as to why at this point.
“There’s not even a pre-veto draft of that,” Aresimowicz said.
At the same time House Majority Leader Matt Ritter maintained that the bill was a priority for the Democratic caucus.
“How much money you make should not impact your ability to care for your child,” Ritter said. “How much money you make shouldn’t impact your ability to care for loved ones or yourself when you’re sick.”
Ritter said it’s going to get all of their attention “but we need something to work off of right now.”
Aresimowicz said Lamont is focused on finishing negotiations on the state budget.
Maribel La Luz, Lamont’s spokeswoman, agreed. She said the governor was focused on the budget.
However, she added that with the budget decisions close to complete, the governor “will turn his attention to working together with the leadership on getting Paid Family and Medical Leave across the finish line.”