Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The allocation of stimulus funding

From the MRJs Amanda Falcone:

Everyone wants some of the $3 billion in federal funding that is coming Connecticut's way, but before that stimulus money can be doled out, applications have to be submitted and requirements must be met.

That's where Matthew Fritz, of Meriden, comes in. Fritz is a special assistant to Gov. M. Jodi Rell

He worked with state agencies to identify potential projects and he, along with another one of Rell's special assistants, began to screen projects and think about ways to expedite the approval process.

And therein lies a serious problem with the stimulus package. While President Obama was rushing to spend money, he decided to give all decision-making authority to the states' Governors. And in our case, Jodi Rell delegated that authority to Matt Fritz - not the legislature.

Doesn't this situation just lend itself to favoritism and cronyism? And that's not a reflection on Matt Fritz. Rather, the Governor (and President) should have told the legislature to lay out criteria for allocation of stimulus funding. But instead, power is now consolidated in the Executive Branch with basically no input from the legislature.

Not good.

Tim White

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