By Pooja Prakash
Governor Rell has agreed to raise taxes for some of the wealthiest households in the state.
She says she wants a budget compromise by the end of the month.
Gov Rell surprised democratic legislative leaders with a new budget proposal that includes an income tax hike for wealthy residents.
It's a move she hopes will end the stalemate at the capitol.
I want a budget and I want it in place by September first.
Rell is willing to support the so-called “millionaire's tax” in exchange for $520 million dollars in additional spending cuts.
If the Democrats show flexibility on the spending side by making these cutsIwill be flexible on the tax side.I'll accept an income tax increase on those earning more than $ 1 million dollars at a 6.5 percent rate.
She also included new tax cuts in the her proposal. She wants to eliminate the estate tax and reduce the statewide sales tax by half a percentage point.
Senate President Don Williams says he has some concerns about lowering taxes in the face of an $8.5 billion dollar deficit. He's also not willing to sign on to additional spending cuts just yet.
But he says this latest proposal from the Governor is progress.
I'm encouraged. I've said for a number of weeks that all the building blocks have been on the table to resolve this. All we have to do is pick them up and put them together. And i think the governor has now joined with us to do that. And there's no reason why we can't have an agreement in the very near future."
Given the Governor's new offer, Democratic leaders have decided to put off a budget vote that was scheduled for Thursday. Williams says they may have an agreement with the Governor to pass by early next week.