Legislator ‘speechless’ over the size of former college president’s compensation package

The co-chair of the legislature’s higher education committee last week she was “shocked” by the compensation package awarded to the leader of the state’s Board of Regents college system. This week, she said, “I’m speechless.”

Sen. Beth Bye, D-West Hartford, commenteed Friday after the regents office responded with answers to her long list of questions about compensation. “I’m just trying to imagine what it would be like to get a $13,000 paycheck every two weeks. It seems extremely, extremely high to me.”

President Robert A. Kennedy, who resigned last week following a series of missteps, has received $100,000 in compensation above his $340,000 base salary, according to information provided to Bye and other legislators Friday.

That compensation included $19,274 in moving expenses, $50,000 from an “accommodation account,”$4,343 for unused vacation time accrued and a $36,863 car. He also billed gas milage and parking expenses.

See a full list of payments provided to during his 13-month tenure here.

Bye said Friday that she is considering holding a legislative public hearing on compensation in higher education and on tuition and fees. The regents on Thursday approved increasing housing and university fees to help pay for new construction projects on some campuses.

The Hartford Courant has a story with more background on some of the perks provided to Kennedy, and report a senior Malloy administration official acknowledging his office negotiated Kennedy spending six weeks working remotely from Minnesota over the summer.

Earlier this month, following media reports of Kennedy’s extended absence from his office in Connecticut, Andrew McDonald, the governor’s general counsel, said the president’s contract negotiated by the governor’s office was meant to be an interim agreement until the Board of Regents was formed. The board never amended the five year contract.