Letter: Legislator surprised reviews haven’t been completed

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To the editor,

Back in October 2011 members of the legislature and the Governor alike hailed the bipartisan “jobs” bill that created the successful Small Business Express program, which provides small and mid-sized companies with grants and loans to help them purchase equipment, expand, and create jobs. 

Another part of that bill, included at the urging of Republican legislators, required three state agency commissioners to review state regulations and make recommendations about those considered obsolete or in need of revision for the sake of efficiency. Government red tape, as most folks seem to know, is often cited by business owners and entrepreneurs as the biggest barrier to growth and investment in the state.

Under that 2011 legislation, the departments of Transportation, Economic and Community Development, and Energy and Environmental Protection were required to submit their findings to specific legislative committees by Feb. 1, 2012.

Considering that, I was surprised to see Gov. Malloy’s recent announcement about his new executive order requiring agency heads to perform the same job and make recommendations to his office by Feb. 3, 2014.

After all, we haven’t yet seen the product of the review ordered in 2011 — the aforementioned agency commissioners haven’t submitted the required reports.

While I’m happy to see Gov. Malloy make a fresh and much-needed move toward tackling the bureaucracy barrier, I’m troubled that state agencies seemingly ignored a mandate spelled out in bipartisan legislation two years ago.

The Governor, early in his term, talked a lot about government transparency. Calling on agency leaders now to explain what happened would fall into that category. 

Lezlye Zupkus

Prospect

State Representative (R-89)