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West Haven's budget is rejected by state oversight board

A state oversight board has rejected the city of West Haven’s $163 million budget.

The state Municipal Accountability Review Board questioned how the city will balance its budget in the long term with a renegotiated police contract.

The deal was approved by the City Council in March to increase officer pay by $10,000. It would be paid for in the 2023 budget by $2 million in federal pandemic relief funding and tax-exemption benefit payments from businesses.

The city has until June 15 to have a budget approved by the board.

Governor Ned Lamont approved Connecticut's temporary takeover of West Haven’s finances earlier this week after city workers misused federal coronavirus funds. Two employees were arrested, including former state Representative Michael DiMassa, who resigned from office last October.

Mayor Nancy Rossi wrote a letter to Lamont, saying the city can manage its own money since they’ve had four consecutive balanced budgets.

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