State Sen. Don DeFronzo (D-New Britain) is joining the administration of Gov.-elect Dan Malloy to assist in following through on Malloy’s promise to reorganize, restructure and consolidate state government, The Hanging Shad has learned. DeFronzo will do so as the new commissioner of the state Department of Administrative Services (DAS). The announcement is expected this week.
DeFronzo, easily reelected to a fifth term last month, will not be sworn in for the new session next month. He has been rumored to be joining the Malloy administration since Malloy became the first Democrat in 20 years to win the governor’s seat. Much of the speculation, including in this space, was that he was heading to the state Department of Transportation (DOT). He is currently co-chair of the legislature’s transportation committee. However, who takes over at DOT will be determined a national search. Malloy has made it a point recently to say such a wide net would be cast to find the very best people for those jobs.
In an address to business leaders last week, Malloy reiterated that he was ready and able to fundamentally change the way the state does business. DeFronzo seems the perfect choice to help make that happen. Prior to becoming co-chair of the transportation committee, he headed the government administration and elections (GAE) committee. That experience will be crucial to what Malloy wants to do. GEA deals with “all matters relating to state government organization and reorganization, structures and procedures.”
Also expected this week is the announcement of membership and chairs of at least one more caucus’ legislative committees. Legislative leaders were reportedly given the final word by the Malloy administration Friday as to who would be plucked from their ranks to join Malloy. That allows leaders to finalize the committees.