Sen. Witkos tries to shine light on secretive UConn Foundation

It was a great thought, when Sen. Kevin Witkos, R-Canton, tried to shine a light on the cloak-and-money clip machinations of the UConn Foundation by including public disclosure orders in a bill that passed this afternoon to give undocumented immigrants eligibility for financial aid at state colleges. Unfortunately Witkos’s amendment went down in flames, with fellow Republicans Toni Boucher and Tony Hwang voting against it. The Blogster got a chuckle, though, during the debate when Sen. Steve Cassano, D-Manchester, co-chairman of the Government Administration and Elections Committee, said pushing the legislation as a late-breaking amendment was not the right way. It was funny because that’s a classic Democratic tactic, usually accompanied by claims that the issues had been aired and people were aware. In this case, the issues on the secrecy of the Foundation had been aired in a public hearing before the Higher Education Committee. Lawmakers are aware of the issues, just as surely as they bow down and bark before the great Husky dog.

“You are there because of us and you can’t tell me what the foundation does with the money?” asked an incredulous Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano. “What scares me to death is what’s wrong with the sunlight? Is there something you don’t want us to know? Let us look, let us see, let us examine. Maybe we have reason to be worried, or perhaps, since they’re not telling us, maybe they have a reason to be worried.”

Sen. Mike McLachlan, R-Danbury: “Many are perplexed in this state by parts of government that are not brightly under the sunlight.”