The Republican leader of the Connecticut House of Representatives would like to put a brake on Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy’s signature business incentive program.
Malloy started his “First Five” program in 2011. Since then the program has awarded millions of dollars in state aid to businesses that promise to create jobs in Connecticut.
Representative Themis Klarides, R-Seymour, says it’s not working. She gives the example of two recipients, ESPN and Alexion Pharmaceuticals, that have recently announced layoffs. Alexion received $51 million from the state to relocate from Cheshire to New Haven. She says this proves the governor is making deals that benefit companies but fail to benefit Connecticut.
“These are two examples, in a seven-day period, of companies that received enormous amounts of money from the state and are now laying people off. So I think it needs to be rethought. I think it should be stopped for the time being until we can figure out a way to reap the benefits, which is job creation pure and simple.”
Klarides says state Republicans are supporting a bill that would give lawmakers authority over the program. She says legislative oversight would offer checks and balances and would help make sure that such programs benefit the state not just the companies.
This report contains information from CRN.