Lamont sets record straight after family’s business dealings called into question

Connecticut

Conn. (WTNH) — Two companies have recently come under scrutiny for their connections to Governor Ned Lamont’s family investments. Lamont spoke to News 8 and set the record straight.

Connecticut’s First Lady Annie Lamont is a partner in a big investment firm called Oak HC/FT. The firm invests in many companies, as seen on a recusal list obtained by News 8.

The Lamonts requested the state Office of Ethics look over a plan they submitted back in 2019 to avoid any conflicts of interest.

The Office of Ethics ruled the plan was good, and this 16-page document said they could move forward with certain cautionary guidelines.

Lamont revealed on Tuesday his family sold off shares in a company that recently inked a deal to move to Connecticut.

The Digital Currency Group, DCG, held a news conference a day earlier to announce the move, and a deal for $5 million in tax credits for 300 jobs it must create.

“We chose to have a press conference because it’s the most significant cryptocurrency company in the world and they could’ve located anywhere they wanted to and they chose to locate in Connecticut,” Lamont said. “Did we get any financial benefit out of that fact? No. But Connecticut gets a big benefit out of that.”

The Lamonts sold DCG shares in April. The cryptocurrency company began talks with state economic leaders six months before that.

“We had an investment in DCG going back some years and we obviously disclosed that and that was on a recusal list and everybody who wanted to knew about it,” Lamont added. “As soon as David Lehman [Commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development] was taking a lead on the negotiations and things were happening, we sold our position that was earlier this year.”

Lehman backed up the timeline.

“He and Annie divested their position in DCG earlier this year, and the first time that DCG can get money from the state is in approximately 2025,” Lehman said.

The governor acknowledged his wife is now looking outside of Connecticut to do business. He said the decision was born out of politics, not red tape.

“We sell out, we say no profits, but it’s the fifth question I’ve had about it. So yeah, it’s probably a lot easier to start up that groundbreaking business in Nashville than it is in Stamford,” Lamont said.

The cryptocurrency company is the second company Lamont disclosed. The first was Sema4, a health care tech company based in Stamford that has a state contract to perform COVID-19 testing. Lamont has said he will donate any profits from Sema4 to charity.

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