VtDigger.org has done some digging and has the emails to Connect-V-Tel the dots.
They found that Karen Marshall, until recently Governor Shumlin’s telecom czar at the ConnectVT project, had dinner with VTel owner Michel Guite and his daughter just one day before voting the company $5 million in grants.
The emails suggest that Marshall had an early dinner with the two Guités on Dec. 6 in Waterbury. On Dec. 7, the Vermont Telecommunications Authority’s (VTA) 9-member board, where Marshall served as a gubernatorial appointee, voted in a voice vote to add $70,000 to an April grant award worth $5 million, to Springfield’s Vermont Telephone Company (VTel), Guité’s telecommunications firm.
When asked by Vtdigger.org about it, Michel Guite says he didn’t talk to Marshall about a new job at that dinner: “I’m sure it didn’t happen.”
It may indeed not have happened. However this sure doesn’t look good. That’s the thing with ethics: good ones don’t look bad.