Low-digit plate recipients offered ‘regret’ and a refund

Timothy F. Bannon, the governor’s chief of staff, has written to the recipients of low-digit license plates whose names were disclosed to a blogger and columnist, apparently in violation of a state privacy law.

In a letter that presumably went to former Gov. M. Jodi Rell — the identities of the recipients of the letters were not released — Bannon acknowledged what has been in the news: the administration released information about the recipients of the low-digit plates in the waning days of Rell’s administration based on the presumption that all records are open for inspection, unless exempted from the Freedom of Information Act.

“Since that time, another statute has been brought to my attention which arguably would require that such information not be released to third parties,” Bannon wrote.

“Since there are potential inconsistencies between these two statutes, Governor Malloy has directed me to contact you to determine whether the release of this information has in any way proven burdensome for you, or if the release raises any other concerns for you.”

If so, the governor has authorized a refund and the issuance of a new plate.

“I regret any inconvenience you may have experienced because of these actions, as does my colleague Roy Occhiogrosso, and appreciate your understanding in this matter,” Bannon wrote.