The First Five? And Then There Were Three …

Posted on March 8, 2012. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

Over a week has passed since the curtain came down on the 2012 Academy Awards. Did you take note of the “Connecticut connection” in the news coverage that followed the event?

No, the “Connecticut connection” didn’t involve any one who actually attended the Awards ceremony or who received an Oscar. Instead, it involved the chief executive of a Connecticut based online ticket scalping organization who was arrested (right here in the Nutmeg State) for a hate crime, police interference, and other offenses at a private party with an Academy Awards theme.

The chief executive runs TicketNetwork, a Connecticut based business that was awarded one of Governor Malloy’s highly publicized First Five economic development packages. It had joined CIGNA, ESPN, and NBC Sports as an awardee, despite a reputation as a firm that allegedly skirts rules (and) pushes ethical boundaries.

Shortly after the arrest, TicketNetwork voluntarily withdrew from the First Five program. State Commissioner of Economic and Community Development Catherine Smith, commenting on the situation, acknowledged that “Certainly, after this occasion, if we do another deal with a privately held company, I think you would probably see us do a little bit more diligence …”

Probably? In support of the public interest, let’s hope that Ms. Smith simply meant Certainly.

Contributed by Michael Kraten, PhD, CPA, Accounting Professor at Providence College and President of Enterprise Mgt. Corp.


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