I must ask Sacred Heart University, where did you find these people for your latest poll? According to their findings, a majority of residents like the idea of tolls. They also overwhelmingly approve of weed legalization. But that last one is pretty much a given.
Newtown Daily Voice reports that the latest SHU poll, since Quinnipiac seems too fixated on national queries, spoke to 1,000 locals. Today’s topic: state revenue and how the state should make it.
Turns out a majority of residents feel “significant anxiety” over the latest budget fiasco. Then again, no one really knows what’s going on since our politicians keep using smoke and mirrors. All that we do know, however, is that it’s bad. We just don’t know HOW bad.
So, when asked about ways the state can find alternative sources of revenue, weed and tolls both came up.
Director Lesley A. DeNardis said there’s a reason why residents seem open to paying up more:
“The State is at a critical crossroads, and it appears obvious from the results of this survey that residents are experiencing a high degree of anxiety over the state’s budget battles, taxes and the cost of living in Connecticut.”
Out of all poll recipients, one and three felt that the quality of life in Connecticut declined. Which means two thirds of residents still feel comfortable living here.
But lawmakers should pay attention of that 33 percent of the population to make sure they don’t grow in number over the next few years. Chances are that number already grew in the last week.
Also, the poll found that a whopping near 75 percent of residents felt the state should offer more incentives for living here: such as new tax credits and rebates. They felt those options would attract new businesses to stimulate our ailing economy.
Wait, what ailing economy, you might ask. Well, if you haven’t heard: Connecticut might fall into another recession real soon. As in 2019.
So, chalk that up as to why more and more residents feel that “significant anxiety.”
Anyways, onto the issue of tolls. A majority of poll recipients agreed that the state needs to develop new sources of revenues to fix its budget problems and to not cut public services. The top two answers: marijuana and tolls.
70 percent support the legalization and taxing of marijuana while 55 percent said they want to see tolls back on the highways again. However, younger people favored marijuana while older people favored tolls.
Hate to break it to these toll supporters, the Mianus River Bridge fell while tolls still perforated Connecticut’s highways. So, if they think tolls will magically fix our ailing roads, they should remember what they looked like before 1985.
Anyways, moving on…
This is where the breakdown starts looking a little tricky. When those under the age of 35 answered this question, 64 percent seemed open to more taxes. However, just over half of those over the age of 55 agreed with the sentiment.
Also, 43 percent of men supported no increased taxes. Instead, they felt the state should reduce the amount of public services and programs. Only 22 percent of female respondents felt the same.
Nearly 80 percent of those 35 and under felt Connecticut’s top earners should pay more in taxes. However, only 56 percent of households making over $150,000 felt the same.
SHU asked a myriad of other questions about what the state should do to turn itself around, but one thing became apparent. DeNardis said that these 1,000 people helped paint a clearer picture of what will happen next election:
“Analysis indicates that public awareness and frustration over bipartisan bickering and the State’s failure to reach reasonable compromises that might help reverse declining income and quality of life will lead to residents ‘voting with their feet’ in the coming years.”
So, that’s a glimpse of how Connecticut feels about the budget crisis. If it’ll impact elections or not is yet to be seen. However, this fiasco did wake the sleeping giant and everyone’s paying attention to our elected leaders.
More people want to know what’s in that bipartisan budget and how it’ll affect them. Not knowing until 11pm tonight only makes that need to know stronger.
What do you think will happen next in the state? Will we see tolls again on the highways? Do you think our lawmakers will legalize weed?
Or, do you think our income tax and sales tax will see a boost before that even happens? Let me know in the comments below.
Also, you can check out the rest of SHU’s survey HERE.