Harriet Jones

Reporter/Editor

Harriet Jones reports on all aspects of the business world for WNPR. She's covered such diverse issues as the threat to close Connecticut's submarine base, the sub prime mortgage crisis and the impact of casinos on the state.

In 2011, she created WNPR's Small Business Project as a way to tell stories about the companies that make up 90 percent of our economy, but often get overlooked in the media.

She is the winner of an Edward R. Murrow award for her reporting on Connecticut's 2010 floods.

Harriet joined WNPR in October 2000 as Morning Edition producer and reporter. Born in Scotland, she worked for the BBC for much of her early career.

She was news director at Scotland's largest commercial radio station, ScotFM, and was lucky enough to cover that country's two biggest political events in 300 years - the referendum which delivered a new parliament, and the subsequent elections.

She has also taught broadcasting for the BBC at some of their international schools in Eastern Europe, delivering courses to journalists in Romania, Albania and Bosnia.

Harriet lives in Stonington with her husband, Bob Statchen, and their three children.

purple_onion / Creative Commons

The current enthusiasm for expanded gaming in Connecticut has prompted the Connecticut Lottery to float the idea of keno once again. Lawmakers will hear testimony on a bill later this week that would allow the lottery to offer keno, which is a form of high speed video gaming.

General Electric has announced plans to sell a large part of its financial arm, GE Capital, as it focuses increasingly its industrial businesses. GE Capital is a big money generator, but also a source of risk that made stockholders nervous. Analysts have congratulated GE on a bold move.

Michelle Lee / Creative Commons

A bill that would block efforts to close a community college branch in Meriden because of anticipated state budget cuts has cleared the state Senate. 

Chion Wolf

Legislators are complaining that they’re being stopped from getting advice from departmental commissioners as they attempt to formulate a budget.

A memo from Governor Dannel Malloy’s budget chief, Ben Barnes, told agency heads that they can provide only facts and data to legislators. They may not express opinions about the best way to achieve cuts. 

Eric P / Creative Commons

Health insurer Aetna has been fined $1 million, after it misled its members about which pharmacies were in its network. The Hartford based company was was given a civil penalty by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), after complaints from consumers soared this year. 

MGM Resorts International

A study, paid for by Connecticut’s two tribal casinos, estimates out-of-state competition could soon divert $703 million a year from Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods. 

The two are seeking to bolster their case for legislation that would allow three new gaming sites within the state, as a way to fight back against new facilities in Massachusetts. 

Harriet Jones / WNPR

Pratt and Whitney says 2014 was a transformational year for the company, and it’s ready to put development problems behind it, as its new family of engines goes into service this year. 

Pratt and Whitney

Jet engine maker Pratt and Whitney is harnessing big data to try to cut down on engine maintenance problems, and save airlines money. 

Starwood

Connecticut’s Starwood Hotels and Resorts is one of the companies condemning efforts by state legislatures to pass discriminatory legislation. 

Kin Mun Lee / Creative Commons

Municipal leaders say they’re deeply concerned about legislation that would see the state taking a bigger role in transit-oriented development in towns. 

The bill that’s currently before the legislature would create a Transit Corridor Development Authority. 

Jan Mika/iStock / Thinkstock

United Health, which has significant operations in Connecticut, says it will spend $12 billion to buy a pharmacy benefits management company. Catamaran Corporation, based in Illinois, will be merged with United Health’s existing pharmacy benefits unit OptumRx. 

Keith Brofsky/Photodisc / Thinkstock

Healthbridge, the controversial New Jersey company, is to sell almost all of its nursing homes in Connecticut to a Florida partnership. Healthbridge was in and out of the headlines for years for poor labor relations as it locked workers out of one of its homes, sparking a strike at all of its unionized locations. 

Harriet Jones / WNPR

Connecticut lost jobs in February, the state’s first monthly decline since last summer. Department of Labor officials say the record cold snap may be to blame.

Harriet Jones / WNPR

Connecticut is one of just two or three places in the U.S. where stationary fuel cells are made on a large scale. While it's been an important industry here for decades, it's never been profitable. But could that be about to change? 

Health and Wellbeing / Creative Commons

Nobel prize winning economist Robert Shiller says the Fed has a very tricky job when it begins to signal a rise in interest rates. Shiller, who teaches at Yale, told WNPR’s Where We Live that there’s no historical precedent for the lengthy period of low interest rates that we’re living through. 

frankieleon / Creative Commons

Tax time appears to be revealing an uptick in identity theft -- and it may be related to some of the massive data breaches seen this year, including the one from health insurer Anthem. 

Creative Commons

United Technologies will move from its long-time Hartford headquarters to another office in Farmington. The move is aimed at saving $100 million in overhead cost. 

Tracy O / Creative Commons

Another ratings agency has placed a negative outlook on Connecticut’s general obligation bonds.

Governor Dannel Malloy's administration welcomed news that three of the four major credit rating agencies have reaffirmed the state’s AA rating. But Treasurer Denise Nappier described the news as bittersweet, because Standard & Poor's outlook on the bonds went from stable to negative. 

Alastair Battson / Creative Commons

Governor Dannel Malloy's latest proposal to overhaul Connecticut's liquor laws is receiving a mixed reception at state Capitol.

Mohegan Sun is to add a second hotel, years after canceling plans for a larger expansion as the recession hit.

Times might still be hard in the casino business, but Mohegan Sun says last year it had to turn away half a million potential room nights at its Uncasville property, because it didn’t have enough hotel capacity. Now it hopes it can set that right by building a seven story, 400 room facility that it will call the Earth Hotel.

Mamata.mulay / Creative Commons

Legislators heard hours of impassioned testimony from cab drivers and from drivers who work for ride sharing service Uber, as they wrestle with the issue of regulating new transportation offerings.

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Connecticut’s attorney general has launched an investigation into two tech companies which he said have put customers at risk of having their computers hacked.

The investigation centers on software sold by the Lenovo Group. It was created by Superfish, an online ad firm, and pre-installed on Lenovo’s computers without the knowledge of consumers. Attorney General George Jepsen said the software, which tracked the browsing habits of online consumers, could leave them vulnerable to hackers. 

Harriet Jones / WNPR

Pratt and Whitney has completely changed the way it builds its engines. The company unveiled a revamped production line at its Middletown plant, which it says will help it keep up with a huge increase in demand. 

Jersey Mike's Subs

Connecticut’s casinos continue to diversify as gaming revenues decline. The Mohegan Tribe said it's partnering with Jersey Mike’s Subs to open a planned ten sandwich shops.

The partnership said it's actively seeking sites in Rhode Island and southern Massachusetts for its first two restaurants.

Nick Papakyriazis/Flickr

The state’s largest business organization has called the governor’s budget proposals a serious blow to business confidence and the economic recovery.

The Connecticut Business and Industry Association said it will oppose the measures, which include effective tax hikes on many businesses in the state.

Jessica Hill / Associated Press

Governor Dannel Malloy has unveiled his biennial budget, a document aimed at closing yawning gaps projected in state finances in the next two fiscal years.

The governor wants to achieve this with a package of spending cuts and a reform of tax codes that will net the state government more revenue. “The budget I present to you is filled with tough choices,” the governor told the legislature. “All told, my proposal contains more than $590 million in cuts to the current services budget.”

Most of those cuts come in the areas of social services and higher education. While there will be no layoffs of state employees, the administration will implement what it termed an “aggressive” hiring freeze, aiming to shrink the workforce by attrition by several hundred positions over two years.

Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

A century ago, in April 1915, an event began that’s come to be known as the Armenian Genocide. One scholar believes that massacre should remind us of the long-term implications of events playing out in our own time. 

It’s thought that up to 1.5 million people may have been massacred or expelled from their homes in the Ottoman Empire during the worst atrocity of World War I. For almost a century, Turkey has denied the enormity of the event, but that may be changing. 

Thomas de Waal works for the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Recently, he returned to Turkey with a group American Armenians -- descendants of those who fled the genocide in the early 20th century. 

The Hartford

Liam McGee, former CEO of The Hartford has died. McGee, who was 60, passed on Friday after a fight with cancer.

Though McGee resigned last July as CEO of the insurer because of his health, he served as executive chairman up until early January of this year.

LDProd/iStock / Thinkstock

Anthem announced that customers will be able to sign up for credit monitoring services starting Friday.

Responding to a letter sent Tuesday by Connecticut’s attorney general, the health insurer said anyone who had a health plan with them in the last ten years will be allowed to access the protection. 

Sean Marshall / Creative Commons

Connecticut's commissioner of transportation, James Redeker has cautioned legislators against attempting to replace Metro-North Railroad as the operator of the New Haven line.

Some Senate Republicans say it's time for the state to have a choice on who runs the commuter railroad.

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