Keith M. Phaneuf

Keith, with Jacqueline Rabe Thomas, won first prize in investigative reporting from the Education Writers Association in 2012 for a series of stories on the Board of Regents for Higher Education. The former State Capitol bureau chief for The Journal Inquirer of Manchester, Keith has spent most of 24 years as a reporter specializing in state government finances, analyzing such topics as income tax equity, waste in government and the complex funding systems behind Connecticut's transportation and social services networks. A former contributing writer to The New York Times, Keith is a graduate of and a former journalism instructor at the University of Connecticut. E-mail him at

Recent Posts

Hartford’s Bronin seeks ally in push for municipal finance reform

Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin and Corporation Counsel Howard Rifkin

With surging debt costs driving huge deficits in coming years, Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin urged a state advisory panel Thursday to help him convince legislators to reform the municipal finance system. He also said he may ask state officials to advance the city millions of dollars in education grants to help stem worsening cash-flow issues. Continue Reading →

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ConnectiCare will stay on CT health exchange in 2017

Staff at the Access Health CT enrollment center in New Britain preparing for the open enrollment that ended in January.

ConnectiCare, the single-largest insurer on the state’s health exchange, announced Tuesday it would participate in the exchange in 2017 working with the rate schedule the Insurance Department approved earlier this month. That decision means two of the four companies that have sold policies through Access Health CT will participate again next year. Continue Reading →

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ConnectiCare’s role in 2017 health exchange stuck in legal limbo

This is a picture of Access Health's New Britain store

The question of whether the largest insurer on Connecticut’s health insurance exchange would participate in 2017 fell into legal limbo late Monday afternoon. Whether ConnectiCare participates next year could hinge on how the state Department of Insurance resolves a new administrative appeal of its recent insurance rate awards. Continue Reading →

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Municipalities say CT’s property tax system is unsustainable


Just days after a landmark state court ruling found Connecticut’s education funding system to be “irrational and unconstitutional,” the chief lobbying group for cities and towns issued a new research paper calling the municipal property tax system “unsustainable.” Continue Reading →

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Judge strikes down state education aid choices as ‘irrational’

Herbert C. Rosenthal, president of the coalition that brought the suit, called the decision  "a landmark victory."

In a broad indictment of how Connecticut supports its poorest schools, Superior Court Judge Thomas Moukawsher ruled Wednesday that the state’s method for distributing education aid is irrational and unconstitutional, while declining to second-guess the General Assembly on the ultimate level of state spending. Continue Reading →

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Report: CT is too reliant on low-wage jobs

Ellen Shemitz, executive director of Connecticut Voices for Children

Slow wage growth, an increasing reliance on low-wage jobs, and “persistently high unemployment” among minorities and workers without a college degree are threatening Connecticut’s long-term well-being, according to the annual Labor Day report from Connecticut Voices for Children. Continue Reading →

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