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Posted inNews

Disclosure laws leave much undisclosed

State ethics laws provide only limited transparency into the financial dealings of Connecticut’s part-time legislators. To whom do they owe money? Disclosure is voluntary. How much stock do they own? Impossible to say. By contrast, Congress and a dozen states require lawmakers to disclose within ranges the amount of outside income they receive and the […]

Posted inNews

Citizen-legislators juggle duties, jobs

Who has a state legislator on the payroll? Three public employee unions have one. So do Northeast Utilities, the Middlesex Chamber of Commerce, Tweed-New Haven Airport, municipalities and non-profits that rely on state funding, and single-issue advocates like the Marijuana Policy Project. About 70 percent of legislators hold jobs outside the General Assembly, bringing both […]

Posted inNews

The General Assembly

The Connecticut General Assembly began its regular annual session on Feb. 3, when Gov. M. Jodi Rell delivered her budget address to a joint session of the legislature. Its constitutional adjournment deadline is midnight May 5. Balancing the state’s budget is sure to be the most contentious issue of the session, and the task will […]

Posted inNews

The budget crisis

The General Assembly begins 2010 with the Democratic majority and Republican Gov. M. Jodi Rell in a stalemate over how to close an estimated $500 million gap in this year’s budget. Sound familiar? That’s how they ended 2009. The price of their inability to put the state’s finances on solid footing last year is that […]

Posted inNews

Public campaign financing

A major question hanging over the races for governor and other state offices in 2010 is the status of Connecticut’s new voluntary system of publicly financing campaigns, the Citizens’ Election Program. U.S. District Court Judge Stefan R. Underhill struck down the program as unconstitutional in August 2009, calling it a well-intentioned effort to combat corruption […]