Goldrick: News Article on Governor’s Budget Violates Journalistic Ethics

Letter to the editor submitted by Sean Goldrick, who served two terms as a Democratic member of the Greenwich Board of Estimate and Taxation.  He lives in Riverside.

Greenwich Time reporter Emilie Munson’s recent article concerning Governor Malloy’s state budget proposal (“Greenwich Could Be Made To Give More To State“, February 11) violated the most basic of journalistic ethics: it failed to offer opinions and arguments on both sides of the issue.

Greenwich Time‘s reporter managed to interview and quote no less than five local Republican legislators, but never bothered to quote, let alone contact, a single local Democrat.

Greenwich Time wrote that local Republicans consider the shifting of a portion of responsibility for funding public school teacher pensions to municipalities to be “completely unacceptable” (Republican state senator Scott Frantz), “bizarre”, and that, “like a cancer, (the municipalities’ pension funding obligation) will become a bigger and bigger problem for all municipalities” (Republican BET budget committee chairman Jim Lash).

In fact, Governor Malloy’s proposal to begin sharing responsibility for teacher pensions between the state and local school districts represents a long-overdue budgetary reform, one which begins to bring Connecticut in line with the fiscal structure of the vast majority of states.  Greenwich Time readers deserve to understand why it’s important, and to read the opinions of Democrats, especially mainstream progressive Democrats, who actually understand the state’s budget, and the importance of this reform.

Instead, Greenwich Time abandoned responsible journalism to function as a PR mouthpiece for the Connecticut GOP.

Readers of Greenwich Time, and of other Connecticut newspapers owned by Hearst Newspapers, which operates a virtual newspaper monopoly in Fairfield County, deserve journalism and the facts, even when those facts run counter to the Republican Party line.


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