Budget Gridlock Puts Youth Summer Job Program on Hold

With no budget passed, many teenagers who were planning to begin summer work next week won’t be starting.

"Essentially, what do they do for the summer?" Asked Danielle Cordova of East Haven.

Cordova’s soon-to-be 14-year-old daughter Makayla was supposed to be starting a part-time job. But thanks to the gridlock at the capitol Makayla’s job is in jeopardy, along with thousands of other jobs within Connecticut’s Youth Summer Employment Program through the state Department of Labor.

"I was really looking forward to it and I'm pretty sure I was going to be working inside the town hall," said Makayla Cordova.

Because a new budget hasn’t passed yet, no funding has been allocated to the department to employ low-income eligible people ages 14 to 21, like Makayla.

"I hope they keep the program so I can be able to work," she said.

Makayla’s mom – like many other parents across the state – is now scrambling to figure out a Plan B.

"It's going to be hard because that option is not there. The opportunity is not there," Danielle said.

Makayla was supposed to be following in the footsteps of her older siblings who benefited from the summer jobs program in years past.

Even without a budget passing, some municipalities will be able to use other funds to pay for the summer jobs program. In the meantime, the Cordovas are urging people to call their legislators and let them know how important the program is.

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