Sen. Boucher statement on Higher Education announcements

October 15, 2012

State Senator Toni Boucher (R-Wilton) ranking member on the Higher Education Committee today released the following statement re: Board of Regents decision to accept Dr. Kennedy’s resignation as President of the Board and the naming of his interim successor.

“As a leader on the Higher Education Committee I welcome the Board of Regents decision to name Phil Austin as the interim President of the Regents of Higher Education. I am hopeful Mr. Austin will bring his experience gained from previous higher education issues and controversies to this role and will be mindful of the circumstances surrounding his newly acquired position.

“Also, I am pleased that Dr. Robert A. Kennedy did the appropriate thing and resigned. His quick decision is in the best interest of higher education. It is also important that the newly named ad hoc special committee continue to ask why the full board was not included in conversations surrounding the compensation decisions.

“Additionally, the Executive Vice President of the Board of Regents, Mike Meotti must be accountable for what actions he took in awarding compensation and for what he knew and when?

“Meotti’s inaction – in returning an outrageous $50,000 raise – prior to public pressure when he was aware of the rules in place requiring prior approval for pay increases must be addressed. In addition his inaction in not communicating with the board members should also be considered when investigating his role in this unfortunate incident.

“What is of utmost importance to me is that the credibly, integrity and academic mission of our higher education system be preserved. Our students and their parents deserve no less. “