June 5, 2020

Sen. Formica Supports Proposals to Increase Transparency, Oversight of Quasi Agency Reform

Sen. Paul Formica (R-20th) speaks during Tuesday’s press conference at which recommendations to increase transparency and oversight of Connecticut’s quasi-public agencies were presented.

HARTFORD/OLD LYME – Senator Paul Formica (R-20th), whose District includes Old Lyme, joined Senate and House Republicans at a press conference Tuesday to put forward recommendations to increase transparency and oversight of Connecticut’s quasi-public agencies.

Sen. Formica said, “There is no question that Connecticut’s quasi-public agencies handle vital functions for the state.  It is time to make sure these functions are being performed properly.  I’m proud to stand with my colleagues and offer solutions – specific reforms to increase transparency and prevent further issues.  We have a responsibility as legislators to protect taxpayers and enforce trust and transparency with all agencies including the quasi-public agencies.”

“Reforms that mandate accountability and transparency from quasi-public agencies must be in place before they are issued any more authority, projects or funding,” added Sen. Formica.

Proposals from this Senate Republican plan include:

  1.  Require submission of quasi-public agency separation agreements and contracts with an annual cost of over $50,000 or a duration of five years or greater to the Attorney General for review and comment before entering into or renewing any such contracts.
  2. Eliminate the State Code of Ethics carve out for quasi-publics regarding contracts with immediate family members. This change will strengthen the code of ethics application in quasi publics to prevent family members of employees from inappropriately benefiting financially through employment or contracts awarded.
  3. If any appointment has not been filled for 3 months, the Board of any quasi-public must send notice to those responsible for making appointment. If an appointment is not filled for more than 6 months after that, allow the Board to fill any such open appointment.
  4. Require all quasi publics to submit all salaries to the Comptroller’s office, OFA and committee of cognizance annually.
  5. Require all quasi-publics to submit any salary proposed that will exceed more than $200,000 or higher or a 5% or higher salary increase to the committee of cognizance. If no committee of cognizance, require such information be sent to the Appropriations Committee. Committees will review prior to salary becoming effective.
  6. Require each quasi-public to report annually to the committee of cognizance and appear before such committee to answer questions regarding such report.  The form and substance required in the report shall be set forth by OPM.
  7. Require all quasi-public agencies to submit financials to the Comptroller for disclosure on CORE.
  8. Require an Office of Policy and Management (OPM) designee to be on any finance committee of the board of any quasi-public entity.
  9. Charge the Department of Administrative Services with developing off the shelf policies and procedures that can be used by all quasi-publics with little modification.
  10. Extend Attorney/Client Privilege to members of the General Assembly, and its staff, State Auditors and the office of the Attorney General so that privilege is not waived by sharing materials with any of the entities.
  11. Require each quasi-public to report specified information annually to the Governor, Auditors of Public Accounts and Office of Fiscal Analysis.

Editor’s Notes: (i) Visit this link for a related article titled Republicans Question Lamont Administration Over Quasi-Public Agencies by Christine Stuart and published Feb. 11 on CTNewsJunkie.com.

(ii) This article is based on a press release issued by Sen. Paul Formica’s office.

(ii) Senator Paul Formica represents the residents of the 20th Senatorial District, which includes Old Lyme along with Bozrah, East Lyme, Montville, New London, Old Saybrook, Salem and Waterford.

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