CT Post: PAC Probe Hasn’t Gone Far Enough

The Editorial Board of the Connecticut Post, in its Sunday edition, writes that the State Elections Enforcement Commission didn’t go far enough when it fined Mayor Bill Finch’s friend attorney William Beccaro $5,000 for irregularities fronting a political action committee that received $46,000 from the mayor’s 2007 mayoral campaign and then rewired the money to finance the mayor’s political activities.

CT Post scribe Ken Dixon penned an enterprise piece in Sunday’s hard copy edition that analyzes how the SEEC limited its scope to Beccaro–the mayor was not fined -opening up observations by several in the piece that the investigation didn’t go far enough: Tom Swan, a veteran state political operative who heads the nonprofit Connecticut Citizen Action Group, said last week he believes the case leaves a lot of open questions and should be pursued further.

Swan is quoted by Dixon: “If I were Finch I would be worried about people like the chief state’s attorney getting interested.”

Cheri Quickmire, executive director of Common Cause Connecticut, an election watchdog, is also quoted in Dixon’s article: “It’s unclear to me that they (SEEC) didn’t see somehow that Finch and his family derived some kind of benefit from the PAC.”

CT Post editorial here.

Regular OIB reader and poster Tom Kelly, a supporter of Finch’s 2011 Democratic primary challenger Mary-Jane Foster, filed the complaint with the SEEC. He, too, is not convinced the SEEC went far enough and has asked the agency to  refer the complaint to criminal investigators. Beccaro had received hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees from the city until he was let go a few months ago.

So, did the SEEC go far enough? If not, where should it lead? Or has enough time been spent on the issue? Is it time to let it go?



  1. I’m shocked and surprised the Connecticut Post said:
    “The ruling by the State Elections Enforcement Commission regarding the political action committee that spent money on behalf of Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch did not say that the mayor did anything wrong.” Maybe there is hope for this newspaper after all, maybe.

  2. The CT Post editorial did not go far enough.
    Why didn’t the Post call on the state’s attorney’s office to open a probe?
    Although the SEEC could refer the matter to the state’s attorney, he doesn’t need to wait for that to happen.
    He can start the investigation today. This is more politicians covering the collective asses of other politicians.

  3. The SEEC always act in this manner. Ask Lydia Martinez for all of the times she has been investigated. Find something wrong and then negotiate a plea and a civil fine.
    They never push hard and never seek criminal prosecution; well, hardly ever.

  4. And did the state SEEC even check into tax matters?
    Were 1099s cut for these illegal payments?
    Will Kevin Sullivan, now commissioner of the Department of Revenue Services, former colleague of Finch and Beccaro when he was President Pro Tem of the Senate launch a state tax investigation or will he look the other way?
    And what about Governor Self-righteous? The one who was so quick to castigate state employees for their role in applying for storm relief.
    Will he persuade Sully to act or will he hide under a political rock?
    Plenty of blame and culpability to go around on this one.

  5. So Lennie, do you think Finch has totally forgotten everything that happened to Ganim or do you think Finch and Wood think they can be so much slicker they won’t get caught?

  6. *** Once again another example of the SEEC’s “bark with little bite” decisions, no? *** On another note: Jepson is an old legislative friend of Finch so any action coming out of the CT State Chief Attorney’s office is not likely unless forced by the Gov’s office. *** TO BE CONTINUED ***

  7. Over 70% of the receipts submitted by Finch and Wood were found not to be valid. What does it take to get the SEEC to go to the authorities? BTW where the hell are the Feds, are they just taking up office space or are they chasing some minor mob jerk?
    It would seem to me what has been going on in this city for the past few years could provide them a ton of positive press let alone free Bridgeport from the grasp of the crooked politicians, lawyers and developers.
    For the state to thrive their major cities have to thrive also. I suggest governor Malloy get off his ass and order the attorney general to take this case on.

  8. So … let me get this straight. Beccaro gets fined $5K, and has a $90K job with a PAC for Finch. Then he gives $46,000 to Finch and his minions. And then Finch, Sonya and Wood spend that $46K of which 70% ($32,000) is deemed invalid by the SEEC as it was spent on personal things. And they have no accountability in this matter?


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