Lawmakers want to shield contracting watchdog from the Executive Branch

Given Gov. Ned Lamont’s reluctance to fund the State Contracting Standards Board, some lawmakers are exploring new legal options to insulate the watchdog agency from the governor’s control — including moving it from Executive Branch oversight to the Legislative Branch. The new two-year state budget legislators negotiated with Lamont included $450,000 to fund five additional positions. Currently, the board’s only staffer is Guay, its executive director. But shortly after that was passed, legislative leaders — at the request of the Lamont administration — included a provision in a subsequent budget policy bill that barred the board from spending $450,000 of its annual allotment. CSEA-SEIU Local 2001 Executive Director David Glidden agreed Tuesday that more funding for the contracting board is essential, but legislators must be careful what they trade to get it.

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