Bridgeport’s Royal Flush

If this deal gets passed, it would be Bridgeport’s version of the Super Bowl.

Here’s the deal: Shelton-based developer Bob Scinto, raised in Bridgeport, has a $200 million plan to relocate the Jewish Home for the Elderly from Fairfield to a 40-acre site he owns on Main Street in Monroe, close to the Trumbull line. Problem: bucolic Monroe (full disclosure, I was raised there) lacks a sewer system. Solution: pipe in to the nearby Trumbull system that’s connected to Bridgeport.

As proposed, the property taxes generated from the relocation, $1.5 million, would split evenly between the three towns, that’s a half a barrel each into the general funds of cash-starved Trumbull and Bridgeport.

This raises an interesting question: can a town give away two-thirds of its property taxes from a development to other towns? Yes.

Let’s put it this way, what would it cost Monroe to build a sewage treatment plant? More scratch than it can afford to spend. Why would such a development generate so much in taxes from a non-profit? The proposal calls for a full residential section and Scinto owns the property.

This project looks like it’s tracking the right way. Bridgeport and Trumbull are clearly on board (they need the revenue), and Monroe First Selectman Tom Buzi wants the deal done. He needs the revenue too.

One of my old (and great) teachers from Masuk High School, Enid Lipeles, a member of the Monroe Town Council, said at a presentation meeting the other night that she wants to squeeze one million for Monroe, leaving just 250k each for Trumbull and Bridgeport.

C’mon Enid, you old chemistry maven, no one knows better than you that all shit flows downhill (to Bridgeport), placing a greater strain on its sewage capacity. Monroe has been sending Bridgeport its garbage, sick and homeless for decades. Bridgeport needs more loot.

(I had the lowest SAT score in the history of the test. I think Enid just lowered it.)

This is one of the deals that was initiated on John Fabrizi’s watch handed to Bill Finch. Don’t give in Bird Man. Get your pound of flesh from the burbs! This is good shit!

Scinto has some leverage. He says he’ll build in Trumbull if Monroe doesn’t go along.

Maybe Bridgeport could do one of these assisted-living deals in Easton and pipe in more crap to keep taxes down.

Weekly Changes

What’s going on at the Fairfield County Weekly? First, Tom Gogola leaves as editor and now Jim Motavalli, who served as super editor of the Weekly’s sister pubs, New Haven and Hartford Advocates. Jim was there for what amounted to a cup of coffee. But that’s the news biz. Both Tom and Jim are friends of mine. Good luck guys.



  1. Municipalities can enter into such an agreement pursuant to CT State General Statute: 7-148bb. “Any municipality may enter into an agreement with another municipality to share real or personal property tax revenue. Any such agreement must be negotiated through a process that provides an opportunity for public participation and must be specific as to the revenues to be shared and their uses. Tax sharing agreements must be approved by a resolution of each participating municipality’s legislative body. Such agreements must be able to be amended, terminated or withdrawn.”

  2. Under the best-case scenario, Bridgeport and Trumbull would get only $500,000 but all the RISK associated with increased volume in the sewer system. I wonder if Fabrizi initiated this deal or just reacted to it during his watch. I think Scinto deserves the credit. Methinks 100% of the taxes should be given to Bridgeport / Trumbull making it worthless to Monroe and prompting Scinto to build in Trumbull, thus increasing its tax base. I never thought sewage could be a revenue source but whoever coined the term “crap is king” must’ve been an elected official in search of new revenue.

    It’s official: publically available data shows foreclosures are rising in Bridgeport.

    Bpts Finest: I read your latest post and think you’re an honorable member of the blogosphere. Take a bow.

  3. All of this is just great; we get $500K for taking more crap from the suburbs. There is going to come a time that OUR sewer system can not handle anymore crap then WHO pays for the expansion and who pays for the repairs?
    These small towns are growing and growing and it’s time they handle their own problems such as sewers and trash. Lennie you put it right we handle their crap, we handle their sick, we handle their drug-addicted kids and we handle almost all of their social problems while they live in a vacuum.
    Scinto threatens to move the project to Trumbull go ahead and do it we should just raise the fees for their sewage tie-ins to a point that it is realistic in actuality they pay less sewer taxes then we in Bridgeport do.

  4. Since Monroe is a topic today, I thought I would post a quick remark. The Jewish Home will pay the WPCA bill to take care of the extra amount of sewage. The property tax is on top of that payment. It makes sense for all three towns. If it goes into Trumbull all that Bridgeport will get is more sewage and no payment because Trumbull is already hooked up. So the choice is simple:
    Do you want an extra $500,000 – $600,000 per year plus usage fees to go to the WPCA or do you want to take 50 dollars away because you haven’t grown your tax base enough and property taxes go up?

    Anyway, I really wrote in to say I’d like to take this opportunity to say thank you to a number of people. First, I have qualified for my public financing grant last month and I would like to thank all of the people who helped me reach my goal to qualifying for public financing in the upcoming election in November. Your contributions highlight your commitment to strong, effective leadership and the need for a change this fall. In 2005, the legislature created a system of public financing. I support this legislation as it prohibits contributions over $100.00, as well as special-interest and PAC donations. It opens the doors for more people to become part of the democratic process which makes our Country great.

    I am grateful to the many kind residents who have opened their doors to me as I walk throughout Monroe and talk with them about their concerns, issues and priorities. I especially appreciate those who have given me water, cookies, soda and tomatoes! In addition to the valuable information I have received, I have made new friends, heard new ideas and have found that many people are committed to change this November.

    Again, thank you to those who contributed and are still contributing to Project Warmth and the Food Pantry at our Headquarters. I hope our town fundraiser in October will be successful too. Our headquarters at 415 Main Street continues to be a dropoff point for both the Food Pantry and Project Warmth. Lastly, thank you to my Moms for Mount group, if you want to join, more information can be found on my web site www Sharing my commitment and listening to people from my community, from my fellow soccer moms to business leaders and teachers to firefighters, further reinforces my passion to serve our community and our country.

  5. Last night, Chris Caruso stepped up at a Zoning meeting to protest an application that the residents disapproved of. He prevailed and the project was denied. Through Caruso’s efforts, amongst others, a quiet nice neighborhood is preserved. Bravo, Chris.

    He would have made a better mayor than Finch.

  6. Wondering: You have it right (#4). Who needs other communities’ sewage? We have enough of our own and should the Magic Johnson, Steel Point, and Remington condos (as well as other development) materialize it will be necessary to increase the size of our sewage facilities. Where will the money come from?

    I don’t know how many of you heard this morning’s a cappella rendering of the Star Spangled Banner at ground zero sung in five-part harmony, but I’ve never heard a more beautiful and heart-rending version of it. It was done by high school students who put their hearts and souls into it. Bravi and amen!

  7. Just got to listen to the Fabs interview of yesterday’s blog. One thing you have to say about him is that he has a certain enthusiasm which is somewhat contagious. But when I think of the fiscal state of this city, it takes cojones to accept a salary of $120,000.00 for a no-show job. If he was so busy at his job he’s been hired to perform, he wouldn’t be calling the non-developer of Steel Point and the Police Chief on issues that shouldn’t be his concern. I would have had much more respect for him had he taken a job in the private sector to see what you have to do to earn a living out there. It’s mighty easy to live on the public teat and bitch and moan about the measly salary and the meager health benefits that the municipality provides.

    Some of you may agree with me when you get your next tax bill based upon the current re-valuation.

  8. Hello OIB. I am here to play a little tune. The tune is called. Yey Morons of Bridgeport!

    I am so glad that I sold my property and moved to Shelton.

    You have administraitors like John Fabrizi who helped create the problem and want to claim that they are the great healer of city government!

    Glad I tell you. I hope Bridgeport gets what they deserve. A Ganim, a Fabrizi hell have them all!

    Pretty soon the state will take everything over. Gone goes Sherwood Feeney and the rest of the old Fabrizi crew.

    The jury is still out on the Finch crew. Time is running out young lads. There is only so much shit the people will swallow.

    The hallways of city hall are a-buzzing. Morale is low.

  9. On the subject of Scinto’s plan in Monroe:

    Can someone whisper into Scinto’s ear that B’port might consider doing whatever HE wants as long as he starts developing some properties in our city? The taxes would offset any reductions from the Monroe project.

    Getting a load of crap can be sweetened to make it bearable.

  10. How many bloggers remember when there were tons of big factories here in BPT…raise your keyboards and say I…factories that had good jobs and paid real taxes to the city…where in the world did these wonderful tax-generating factories go??? Better question…how the hell do we get them back here!!!

  11. Defunct Manufacturing in Bridgeport:

    General Electric
    Producto Machines
    Brunner Ritter
    Bryant Electric
    Harvey Hubbell
    Bridgeport Brass
    Frisbie Pie

    Only a few off the top of my head.

  12. Con Filardi–
    “It’s mighty easy to live on the public teat and bitch and moan about the measly salary and the meager health benefits that the municipality provides.”

    Seven years ago today 343 members of the fire department of New York City lost their lives when they rushed in to the twin towers to rescue tens of thousands of innocent civilians. They rushed in…when others were rushing out…THEY RUSHED IN…WHEN OTHERS WERE RUSHING OUT. Perhaps you might want to rethink your position on how easy it is to “live on the government teat”.
    The 343 that gave their lives represent only a fraction of the people that were lost that day, but it is my opinion that these brave men represent the best that mankind has to offer. Sadly these 343 heroes are just the tip of the iceberg. There will be countless more lives cut short due to various health/respiratory issues caused by exposure during the rescue efforts.
    Rest assured some hard-working suits in the private sector will earn their stripes by finding a way to screw the widows and children out of any insurance claim they should be entitled to.

  13. We lost a lot of these factory jobs for a variety of reasons. Many of the jobs initially moved down south because the payscale for employees was a lot less than what they paid here in CT. The utility costs were significantly lower and still are. Connecticut and our legislators made CT a very expensive place to do business. America has since lost many of these jobs that went south to foreign countries where there are no minimum-wage laws and employees are paid pennies to do what cost dollars in America.
    Carpenter Steel left after prolonged negotiations with the steelworkers union. They had a non-union plant in Redding PA that was actually larger than their operation here. They had enough of the unions and their demands and shut down and moved their operation to their home factory in Redding.
    I dont see those jobs coming back because of the following:
    1. High wage scales
    2. Extremly high energy costs
    3. High taxes
    4. a poor infrastructure.
    and the list goes on.

  14. Wondering:
    We’re on the same wavelength again. It’s just too expensive to operate factories in this area. Manufacturers have to compete with products from China, Taiwan, Indonesia, Central America, etc. where people work for a fraction of what they work for here. We have to stop thinking in terms of manufacturing. Our workforce has to be well enough educated to work in the service sector.

    park city fan:
    Get a life. Let’s talk apples and apples, not apples and oranges.

  15. FACTORY JOBS left The USA because we out-priced ourselves via DEFICIT SPENDING and the resulting inflation — the kind that started on July 30, 1965 and still persists today.

    THOSE who think inflation is now tamed don’t understand how bad things’ve have gotten or how long this recession will last.

  16. Local Eyes tell us more about the factories without smokestacks and how we can take advantage of them.
    Local eyes, do you see the smokestackless factories becoming a thing of the past like the one with the smokestacks and has the train passed us making it more difficult to start a business without smokestacks?


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