SCHOOL CLOSINGS AND DELAYS

State House Republicans’ Chief Of Staff Resigns Amid Criminal Probe

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Rell gets nominated at GOP convention

Republican Party Chairman George Gallo at Central Connecticut State University in 2006. (MICHAEL MCANDREWS / Hartford Courant / May 20, 2006)

HARTFORD — Federal agents are investigating tens of thousands of dollars’ worth of printing and mailing services provided in recent years to Republican legislative campaigns by a Florida direct-mail and printing company – with a focus on whether candidates were improperly directed to use the firm.

The House Republicans’ chief of staff, George Gallo, resigned Thursday after acknowledging that he is a “person of interest” in the probe.

At least four FBI agents set up shop Wednesday in a room inside the House Republicans’ suite of offices in the Legislative Office Building, sources said. Among the lawmakers they interviewed were at least a couple whose campaigns in recent years had paid for the services of Direct Mail Systems Inc., of Clearwater, Florida, sources said.

Among the agents’ questions was whether the legislators had been steered to the Florida company, sources said.

Direct Mail Systems’ vice president and CEO, Mike Milligan, has been unavailable for comment so far Thursday.

The firm’s services include campaign mailings and printing of get-out-the-vote flyers, candidate palm cards, and other election materials. Dozens of Republican candidates, mostly for the state House, used the Florida company for their campaigns, according to state campaign financing records on file with the State Elections Enforcement Commission.

Payments by Republican legislative campaigns to Direct Mail Systems have run well into hundreds of thousands of dollars since 2008, records show.

Read more at Courant.com

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