As Cop Contract Looms, A Push To Pound The Pavement

From Brian Lockhart, CT Post:

The reformers have so far discussed: Cutting overtime and using that savings to fund more social service needs; restoring neighborhood foot patrols; putting civilians in charge of directing traffic at construction sites to free up officers for other duties–a change Councilman Ernie Newton has also independently been championing.

Bridgeport NAACP President Rev. D. Stanley Lord, a task force member, in an interview said he expects those changes will be “a tough pill to swallow” for the union.

City leaders and police administration have for years grappled with overtime. The force went $2.2 million over its $4.7 million budget for 2020. And dozens of officers are typically among the highest paid Bridgeport personnelbecause of their accumulated overtime earnings from regular law enforcement duties and lucrative “outside” jobs like directing traffic at construction sites. That outside overtime is reimbursed by the private companies involved.

Full story here.



  1. The overtime payroll for outside jobs (roadwork) may be reimbursed by the private companies. BUT>>>>it jacks up the pension paid at retirement. The taxpayers could be footing the increased bill for 40 years. Even longer if the officer elects surviving spouse benefits and has a spouse sufficiently younger who outlives the officer for decades.
    Outside jobs are a bonus for officers and should not be counted in pension calculations. Requiring police officers to direct traffic for all roadwork is unnecessary featherbedding and raises the cost of all roadwork.

    1. Collective-bargaining meaning:
      Negotiation between organized workers and their employer or employers for reaching an agreement on wages, fringe benefits, hours, and working conditions. The Bridgeport Police Department (BPD) responds to more police calls in the state but they are not one of the top paid departments. Let’s not forget the BPD CAN NOT GO ON STRIKE like other labor unions and that gives the city the incentive not to negotiate faith, at times a party may engage in a negotiation with no desire to reach an agreement or no intention of implementing any agreement. This was a favorite tactic of David Dunn. When a union can’t get a good pay raise then they will ask for better benefits which allows the city to pay down the road. Bridgeport wants good police protection without paying for it so police officers will move on to other cities who do respect them.

    2. While it is true that the extra duty employment is a part of a Bridgeport Police officers pension, you need first ask who’s fault is that. In Stamford, where the extra duty job hourly rate is the highest in the state of Connecticut, it is not included in their pension. This was a wink wink scratch my back I’ll scratch your back deal between the union and Ganim who desperately wanted to win that election,
      And why wouldn’t the union make that deal? They’d be fools not to. So before you go vilifying the police department, the police union, etc. you need to look at how and why that deal was made. Many who were involved in that deal are gone, except Ganim. Go figure. I’ve been there personally when the threat to take away the extra duty work was first tried in Stamford. We saved that work and set the precedent for the entire state. There are many benefits to having private employers hire police officers in every city. I’m not going to go through all of that here and now. Go right ahead and take that away and see what happens! Do you think you can attract decent employees to the police department if they’re not able to make a decent wage? They work plenty of hours to earn that. It’s not just handed to them as a benefit. This argument always seems to return.

    3. The state police road jobs don’t count towards their pension. Only shift OT factors into the mix. That May be what could happen. The idea that civilians working road jobs to free of the police officer is a non-starter; they’re working on their time off.

  2. Go back to my first comment. This is an invitation to a disaster.
    Ganim is saying nothing. Audrey is siding with the defund the police crowd. Eric The Novice is lost in these negotiations.
    What you will end up with is no negotiated agreement and Ganim will come in a cost the the taxpayers a bundle.
    And he will say it’s the best deal he could broker given how he got involved at the last minute.

  3. Lest we not forget that the Bridgeport Fire Department is without a contract and like the BPD these brave men and women put their lives on the line every day they go to work. Mayor Ganim, give these brave men and women a contract, sooner rather than later so that they can take care of their families.

  4. I am not a rocket scientist, nor do I understand the full impact of OT on the pensions, but it has to be cheaper to have a force that is short by 90 officers and pays officers OT to pick slack than hiring (paying) 90 officers with all the benefits that go with it. It also benefits the officers to have a smaller force if it doesn’t affect the out of their duties. Mathematically the city is probably saving money, millions. Wouldn’t you think?

    P.S MM it’s not like those cops working road construction are doing of job that serves a purpose? Quite a few road construction works are killed and injured each year. But sometimes you can’t expect people to see the other side of things. JS

    1. You are correct. It’s cheaper to have one employee do the work of two even with the OT cost. I’ve never calculated the pension costs however, because in Stamford “side jobs” do not figure into pensions. Like I said: in Bridgeport it was a favor for a favor and Ganim thought it was worth it, and the cops are blamed unjustly.

      1. Or you could say, say it’s more expensive to have two employees do the word or one, who is to say 40 is set in stone. Many people work over 40 hr, especially people who own their own business. I highly doubt this OT and pension thing is new to Joe’s reelection 5 years ago, I know OT isn’t which seemed to be an issue with Finch and Chief Gaudet that seemed to have brought the cops and its union to support Joe in the first place. Besides isn’t Jo always going on about Port cops leaving the Port for other towns that have a better pension and Stamford pension is better than the Port’s, without OT being calculated, No? Besides the Port has super cops, they don’t look for an awning. 🙂



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