Torrington mayor: City may take on debt amid state budget impasse

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TORRINGTON -

The mayor of Torrington says she may have to borrow money to keep the city running amid a statewide budget crisis.

Schools will start a week late and car tax bills haven't even been sent out, officials say, because of the failure of state lawmakers to agree on a budget.

Mayor Elinor Carbone says the city may have to borrow to avoid dipping too deeply into its emergency reserves. At this point, without a budget, she says it's unclear how much money Connecticut's towns and cities will receive from the state.

"I'm only willing to go to the rainy day fund if there is just a gap in the timing on the revenue," she says.

And Carbone has already frozen hiring at City Hall.

"Every mayor's nightmare is the unpredictability of what we're going to be getting," Carbone says. "From year to year, it's a guessing game."

She says the situation has led to a lot of confusion, with as many as a dozen residents a day calling City Hall with questions -- like when will their car tax bills arrive? 

They mayor says hopefully those bills will arrive in September.

Teresa Sullivan runs the Connecticut Academy For The Arts children's art program in town. She says she learned a long time ago not to rely on state funding.

"We can't count on the state to support so many things," she says.

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