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Buying Time, Ganim Vetoes Budget

May 19th, 2017 · 5 Comments · Analysis and Comment, City Budget, City Council, News and Events

When was the last time a Bridgeport mayor vetoed the city budget waiting on the state to get its act together? That’s what Mayor Joe Ganim has done to buy time as the state legislature works its way toward a state budget negotiating an ocean of red ink. The budget year starts July 1.

CT Post reporter Brian Lockhart has more on this:

The no-tax-increase budget Ganim forwarded to the City Council in early April counted on $18 million from the state, based on Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s draft budget. But the state’s deficit has since grown, so the municipal budget the Bridgeport council adopted May 8 reduced that to around $14 million.

“This veto will extend the budgeting process timeline … to collect as much information as possible about the state’s budget,” Ganim said Thursday.

The mayor said his veto should not be taken as an indication he disagreed with the changes the all-Democratic council made to his budget. Chief among them, council members shifted $1 million out of the police department’s overtime account to the Board of Education.

Full story here.

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5 Comments so far ↓

  • DC Faber

    Another chance for Joe to show leadership, another blown opportunity. The State of Connecticut is poor and there will not be much of any funds coming down to the towns and cities. If Joe wanted to be a leader, he would assume nothing was coming and plan accordingly. Then, if and when funds did come it could be used to refund cut or underfunded items. But even with the CC in his pocket he cannot figure out how to look in charge. JB2 continues to make Bridgeport the joke of Connecticut.

  • Tom White

    This has always been an option. I doubt though that any mayor has had the confidence to do it till now given how clueless and/or obedient this city council is.

  • John Marshall Lee

    Sometimes you need time in order to get to the bottom of a story. Other times it provides a small space to recognize that the answer was always present. And that is what happened to me with respect to parking meter revenues.

    This morning at breakfast time I observed two men in bright yellow City shirts emptying meters on Fairfield Avenue. I approached them and asked where the coins were being taken. After introductions I was told that the monies were to be wheeled to LAZ on State Street our City parking consultant, coordinator, advisor, etc. Of course that did not help me find where those coins enter the City revenue stream. But one of the men had a Public Facilities imprint on his shirt, and when I looked at the latest City monthly financial report, there it was Line Item #41664 Parking Meter Collections. Budgeted for FY 2017 at $415,000, it had raised almost $260,000 through nine months for Public Facilities. Finance projects $155,000 of income for the final quarter ending June 30, 2017. That projection may prove to be too high, but the Mayor’s budget shows an increase of $270,000, $685,000, projected for next year. Why? The matter is not explained in the budget book. Does that sound reasonable for regular meter usage?

    We have new meters, more than 100 of them I understand plus the older mechanical meters. There is a new Ordinance approved by CC in 2016 about which questions have been asked regarding its framing, adoption and application as process today. But what sense does it make for meter funds to go to Public Facilities that has no goal or activity as part of its very broad Mission Statement (p.152) having anything to do with Parking or meters? So what if it has been that way for years. Why the revenue if no responsibilities? What does the new Ordinance say about meter enforcement? Is it done by Police Department meter minders as used to be the case or by what personnel in Public Facilities? Where are former meter minders today? Retired from City service? Doing something else for the City? Or what?

    Parking violation fines go to the Police Department, but why is that if enforcement has been transferred to Public Facilities Administration? Have revenues been calculated with accuracy? Have personnel been reduced because of new technology? Is our City functioning in line with our present Ordinance? What if you were to check with the City Clerk office for the Council approved language? Would you receive the info you seek or only a “blank stare”? Time will tell.

  • charlie

    OK Joe so if the money doesn’t come what you going to do. Hire all seasonal jobs, lay off more minorities, or just hook up with Mario

  • The Bridgeport Kid

    If Joe Ganim and the city’s legal department had the balls they would be looking for a way to revoke the multi-decade tax abatements handed out to industrial property owners that are bleeding the city dry. Its not a pretty subject, t sexy enough to earn headlines, but hey, gots to be done.

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