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Business News Roundup, June 16, 2021

The Fed holds a policy meeting, Democrats plan to push forward on the White House’s infrastructure and family bills, CDFIs get a funding boost, a disruption in Connecticut’s debate on recreational legalization, and a wage standard for the Connecticut solar industry are among the top business news items this morning.


The Federal Reserve is set to release plans to raise interest rates sooner than previously expected amid growing inflationary pressures, according to the Wall Street Journal. While the Fed will maintain its policies of near-zero rates and bond buying in the short term, economic forecasts show that officials are anticipating a rate increase in March.

Worried that too many concessions might be made and frustrated by stalled efforts to reach a bipartisan compromise on President Joe Biden’s multi-trillion dollar infrastructure and family bills, Democratic leaders in Congress are planning to bring the measures to a vote. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said preparations are being made to vote on the proposals using a reconciliation procedure that could enact the legislation with a simple majority rather than 60 votes.

Vice President Kamala Harris has announced that the Biden administration is distributing $1.25 billion to more than 860 community financial development institutions, which assist businesses. The funds are being provided to provide additional support for businesses recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic.


The Connecticut Senate voted 19-12 to pass a bill with new language that broadens eligibility for recreational marijuana licensees, an unexpected disruption in the debate over legalizing marijuana in the state. Governor Ned Lamont is threatening to veto the bill as currently written, though the Connecticut House of Representatives meets today and could make further changes.

Lamont has signed a bill applying the prevailing wage to Connecticut’s solar energy industry, mandating higher wages and benefits for publicly-financed projects. Solar companies pushed unsuccessfully for a veto of the measure.

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