In Hartford, a Finger Points at City Treasurer

Oct 7, 2013

Hartford City Treasurer Adam Cloud (L) and Mayor Pedro Segarra (R).
Credit City of Hartford

In Hartford, a dispute over $600,000 of insurance payments has led to a state investigation and questions about city Treasurer Adam Cloud. But the treasurer says the mayor is out to get him.

Hybrid Insurance Group is a broker that handles a few policies for the city and the board of education. According to a complaint filed with the state by the city's director of risk management, the broker won't communicate with the city and explain why it hasn't paid $670,000 in premium payments.

The state isn't the only one looking into the matter. The investigation appears to have begun in the Hartford Public Schools. An internal schools report obtained by WNPR points a finger at city Treasurer Adam Cloud. The report says that Hybrid's offices are in a downtown building owned by Cloud's family. It also says that Hybrid has hired Cloud's brother as its lobbyist. Both are true. In short, the report suggests Cloud has a conflict of interest.

But Cloud says that's impossible. He didn't have any oversight when it came to hiring Hybrid. He says he's being set up because he's been critical of the mayor, whose administration has seen its share of public humiliations over the past year. Cloud says desperate people do desperate things.

Cohen: So, when you say desperate people do desperate things, you're referring to the mayor?
Cloud: Yes, I am.
Cohen: Why is he desperate in this situation?
Cloud: Have you read the newspaper recently?
Cohen: You think the mayor is hanging you out to dry, essentially?
Cloud: Yes, I do. I absolutely do.
Cohen: For his political benefit?
Cloud: I think as a distraction from what is going on in his own administration.

Hybrid's CEO has not responded to requests for comment. In a statement, Mayor Segarra said that these are "serious allegations" that were brought to his attention by the public schools. He and school officials decided that they now should be reviewed by the city's internal audit commission.