Gov. Dannel Malloy’s chief of state Tim Bannon, deputy chief of staff Alvin Wilson and communications director Colleen Flanagan are leaving the administration in a strangely timed announcement.
First and foremost, one has to wonder how in the world can three key administration players leave in the middle of a statewide crisis. Why not wait until everyone has their power back and Malloy isn’t dodging questions about why it’s taking so long? Perhaps this week and the record snow storm is the equivalent of an extended “take out the trash” period (usually when government officials need to announce something but they would prefer no one notice, they release it late Friday afternoon). Maybe Malloy figures, “Let’s release it now when all people care about is staying warm and finding some unspoiled food.”
As expected, Malloy tried to spin it that the employees chose to leave. That might be true of Bannon who probably just doesn’t need the aggravation but it’s certainly not true of the other two.
I know very little about Alvin Wilson but I now a whole lot about Flanagan. As I have written in the past, Colleen is a young, hard-working, smart and successful communications professional. There is no doubt her future is bright no matter where she lands. I also think she was in over her head in the communication director’s position. First, her job was to say what chief strategist (and the actual communications director) Roy Occhiogrosso told her to say. It appeared to The Shad that she went off the reservation a couple of times, the latest being this when she basically said the lack of a meeting with union officials representing electrical linesmen was Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Dan Esty. Malloy and co. are super-sensitive to all things Esty.