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Candelora Statement on Transparency and Decision-Making in Government

Posted on November 9, 2021

HARTFORD — House Republican Leader Vincent Candelora on Tuesday issued the following statement regarding recent events affecting the Connecticut General Assembly, including a legislative staffer who plans to simultaneously serve as executive director of the Connecticut Democratic Party, as well as the West Haven controversy that caused former state representative Mike DiMassa to resign and has current 104th District Rep. Kara Rochelle facing questions from the news media regarding payment she received as a consultant for the city:

“The notion that the Majority Leader’s chief of staff should be allowed to work part time in that role, collecting a government paycheck, while also running the political shop for Governor Lamont and legislative Democrats seeking re-election, is disturbing and smacks of an arrogance that comes with one-party rule.

I urge my colleagues on the Joint Committee of Legislative Management to emphatically reject this employment arrangement, which would be a good first step toward restoring the steadily-eroding confidence residents have in government. To do otherwise would reflect poorly on all of us while leaving many Connecticut residents questioning our ability to make good decisions here at the capitol.

Whether controversy over absentee ballot applications in recent municipal campaigns or the allegation of nepotism originating from the governor’s budget office, such ugly episodes and the widening investigation in West Haven are a byproduct of virtual government that fosters backroom decision-making.

Governor Lamont and legislative Democrats should set a positive tone immediately by reopening the capitol and every other facet of state government, restoring the critical element of our Democracy—transparency.”