Government Reader Contributed

West Hartford Resident Will Participate in Panel Discussion About UConn Foundation

The forum will focus on the UConn Foundation’s exemption from state law and the Freedom of Information Law.



The Connecticut Foundation for Open Government (CFOG) and Connecticut Public Radio’s daily discussion program “Where We Live” are teaming up to host a panel discussion examining the UConn Foundation’s refusal to openly share how it raises and spends money.

The discussion, which will be aired on WNPR-FM, will take place on Tuesday, March 22, 2016 at 6:30 p.m. at The Lyceum, 227 Lawrence St., Hartford. John Dankosky, host of “Where We Live,” will moderate the panel. The public is invited to attend, free of charge. The discussion will be recorded for later broadcast on WNPR.

Whether the UConn Foundation, the fund-raising arm of Connecticut’s flagship university, has the right to avoid public scrutiny has been an issue of considerable debate in recent years, as the legislature has considered overturning state law that made the foundation an exempt institution from the state’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

Panelists will include state Sen. Michael McLachlan, R-Danbury, who has filed a bill for the second time that would make the foundation subject to Connecticut’s Freedom of Information Act; Daniel Klau, First Amendment attorney; and Derek Slap, associate vice president for external relations for the UConn Foundation and a West Hartford resident. An additional panelist is expected to be added.

The UConn Foundation, Inc. is an independent, not-for-profit, tax-exempt organization which operates exclusively to promote the educational, scientific, cultural, research and recreational objectives of the University of Connecticut. The foundation serves as the primary fundraising vehicle for the university.

The Connecticut Foundation for Open Government (CFOG) is a tax-exempt, not-for-profit nonpartisan educational foundation founded in 1991 by citizens of Connecticut interested in promoting open government and the public’s right-to-know. Its programs are carried out by a volunteer board of directors drawn from the media, academe, the law, business and government.

Serving on the CFOG board of directors are West Hartford residents Daniel Klau, David Fink, and Bernard Kavaler.

Where We Live,” hosted by John Dankosky, is a talk show about issues and events in Connecticut, New England, the United States, and on the planet (sometimes even beyond).

Monday through Friday at 9 a.m. and 7 p.m., you can hear interviews with elected officials, roundtables on transportation and infrastructure, the latest scientific breakthroughs, changes in the health care system, education in the 21st century, the effects of worldwide events like climate change on our local communities, and music played live by a diverse array of local artists. The executive producer of “Where We Live” is Catie Talarski, who also serves as CFOG program committee chair.

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