Finch: City In Midst Of Major Comeback, Draws Line In Sand

Finch at Cove
Mayor Finch delivers speech at packed Captain’s Cove Seaport.

In a jammed, steamy Captain’s Cove Seaport Wednesday night, Mayor Bill Finch kicked off his reelection campaign telling more than 500 supporters “I’m proud to stand here before you and say that our city is in the midst of a major comeback!”

Several speakers fronted Finch including City Council President Tom McCarthy, former Mayor John Fabrizi and Democratic Town Chair Mario Testa who’s doing a balancing act between Finch and his old friend Joe Ganim with the July 21 endorsement session of the 90-member Democratic Town Committee on the horizon. Prior to Finch’s announcement Testa visited Ganim’s police substation/satellite campaign operation in the crime-plagued Trumbull Gardens housing project.

“Eight years ago we came together in an effort to build a better Bridgeport,” Finch told the crammed crowd on the second floor of the Cove, the overflow taking in the announcement from the sanctuary of the deck on a steamy early evening.

“The great recession was hitting our city hard. High unemployment, home foreclosures, job losses, and rising costs left too many Bridgeport families struggling to make ends meet. But we didn’t take it lying down. We dug in and got to work. We made smart investments and tough decisions in order to right the ship. Our hard work has resulted in Bridgeport being stronger today than it’s been in many decades.”

Finch then listed a series of accomplishments such as the Steel Point redevelopment area of the East Side featuring Bass Pro Shops as the major tenant, Eco-Technology Park, DeJulio Sausage, creating and renovating park land. On the education front Finch cited increasing pre-k access, school construction and renovations and after-school programs.

Then Finch drew a line in the sand.

“I stand before you as a husband and the father of four kids,” Finch said. “And I’ve lived my entire adult life in Bridgeport. But I can honestly say that I have never seen an election that puts our city–and its future–at more of a crossroads than the one we’re jumping into.

“In this election, there is a clear choice. We can either continue down the path of strong leadership that is focused on the long run, making smart investments in the future, or, we can go back to the failed policies of greed, crime, corruption, lies and mismanagement.”

Finch did not mention Ganim by name but his speech signaled the intense exchanges that will come in the two months leading to a September primary.

“We can either continue making Bridgeport better every day or we can go back to a time when an elected leader stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from taxpayers, cost the city tens of millions more, and spat on the good name of our city, disrespecting each and every hard working Bridgeport.”

Ganim is making crime a focal point of this election. Finch has cited lower crime statistics. Opponents Ganim and Mary-Jane Foster will argue that violent crime is higher this year than last year.

Finch said “… we need to be even more vigilant each and every day. We not only owe it to every Bridgeporter, but we owe it to those who have lost their loved ones due to senseless acts of violence.”



  1. *Yawn.* Finch grabbed every maintenance person in the city and had them hauling desk and chairs into his hastily put-together substation. What a buffoon.

    1. Phantom, it was a very exciting three hours. Voters from every corner of the city. Nice to be in a room with so many city residents. Every corner of the city, every neighborhood was represented. Every color was there and enthusiastic, you can feel the energy! Considering the huge crowd, lack of air conditioning and intense humidity, it was very exciting. Great speech, lots of food, great conversations, enthusiastic crowd. What more could an incumbent Mayor want for his call to arms speech? Phantom, you missed a great time in a room with positive pro-Bridgeport people!

  2. I was there and there were not 500 people, that is bull. There were other people hanging out and stuff. Even in the picture you can see people in the background just eating who had nothing to do with Finch. The picture makes it look like there are a lot of people because they are all packed together but it wasn’t the case. It was kind of embarrassing if you ask me.

    1. BptPorter, are you serious? You go out of your way to Captain’s Cove and your comment is Lennie Grimaldi exagerated the guest count. If you were there your first comment would have been Where is the air conditioning, the food was great, it was a sauna and you felt like a sardine. You definitely were not there. It was electrifying! I had a nice time, but then again, I rarely get out much. I would have guessed 600 attended and a good time was had by all! 🙂

        1. BptPorter, nearly every one of the 600 people were packed in the Finch party room. Everyone in the room was wearing a Finch sticker and everyone in the room was pro Bpt. Even the deck was packed. Maybe you were downstairs with the Captain’s Cove customers. If the Cove has an open happy hour like that on a Wednesday night–wow. You could barely move. Sorry you went out of your way to attend an event in a parallel universe that disappointed you.

          1. I cannot stop crying because I got a haircut for this event and thought there were going to be more people. It was about 300, not 500.

          1. Lol, are you kidding? Now I have to think of the 200 people I spoke to. I do not recall one negative person! Is this Scott Hughes?

  3. “The great recession was hitting our city hard. High unemployment, home foreclosures, job losses, and rising costs left too many Bridgeport families struggling to make ends meet,” UMMM, am I missing something here? What has changed since Bill got in office? Unemployment is at an all-time high in the city, people are losing their homes daily, industry is leaving, replaced by minimum wage jobs, and when the reval comes right after the election, Bpt families will be struggling to make ends meet. Sooo, what has changed, other than Starbucks coming that is?

  4. Is that a “Titanic” life ring/ring buoy on the wall, just behind the Mayor’s head?

    I applaud the mayor for his uncanny knack for calling out the situational subtext with visual aids–just as he did when he wore his fancy “Detroit” Tigers warm-up coat to his meeting with former US Comptroller General David Walker to discuss how to steer our city from bankruptcy … like, yes, Detroit.

    1. Pete Spain // Jul 8, 2015 at 9:56 pm
      To your post
      Astounding … right there … The Titanic reminder! And he’s paying the big campaign bucks to get a picture message like this out to the voting public.
      Pete, you can’t make this kind of stuff up.
      Somebody seriously has been sending the Finch-Wood administration in the direction of defeat. What’s their angle?

      1. Well it does not seem to be financial and that is sad because that is where the City lives and its taxpayers are stuck. Along with the visible development a storyline has been required that shows us climbing out of the fiscal canyon. Does anyone believe Bridgeport’s fiscal picture is in as good shape as Finch’s rosy nostrum about “getting better daily?”

        June 30, 2015 was the end of our fiscal year. No PR from the campaign or Brett on how we are enjoying another year of budget surplus? That’s what it looked like at eleven months, good enough for an announcement, no? Is the CT Post bedazzled by Trumbull Gardens news so much that they ignore fiscal issues when questioning?

        But when you process so many tax abatements, waste funds on do-over property revaluations, force taxpayers to fund Moutinho’s driveway in Stratford (with no report yet on how that came down or from where it was funded), and fail to publish meaningful vital statistics on where we are (and let us see how we got there during the years since the Fiscal Review Board), well there you are. And people are talking about youth jobs for the summer, does anyone feel a need to review Lighthouse with a budget in excess of $4 Million in the year just completed? Where does all that money go, if spent on only 2800 youth year ’round as claimed? Who is reviewing and monitoring, and assuring us the City is efficient with all its monies?

        Is it an off-base topic? Do taxpayers think so? Is it boring to all? Time will tell.

      2. Pete Spain and carolanne curry are blogospheric pugilists, which means they’re looking for a reason to argue or criticize. They’re not defensive; they’re offensive. Lacking an agenda of their own, they choose to belittle their opponent.
        BTW, Mayor has his back to the Titanic life ring that Pete Spain so desperately clings to. “Full speed ahead” says the captain.

        1. Right, Paul (aka Local Eyes of Trumbull), “Full speed ahead!”–as the captain of the Titanic is to have said on that fateful night.

          The only difference is you are saying it figuratively with your “Local Eyes” blindfolded–which is not much of a trick at all.

  5. I saw Steve A after the event and he was still all worked up. I said to him “Steve how were you able to contain yourself amidst all of that excitement?” And he said “DEPENDS” on what you mean.

  6. What was George Orwell’s line? “Who controls the past controls the future.” “Who controls the present controls the past.”
    Finch was the candidate eight years ago because the DTC feared Caruso would beat Fabrizi. Now Finch’s ministry of public enlightenment is in overdrive. Finch’s taxpayer-funded propaganda website,, paints a picture that is delusional. I wish I could believe some of it.

    1. Well, click your heels Dorothy, soon you will be over the rainbow where bluebirds fly. It is so much better than the dark and depressing place you call home.

      Take a drive, Tom. Take a look and see if it looks like things are happening. Take a drive to Steelpointe, go downtown. Why not just enjoy some of the good stuff instead of always being so negative? How does one live in a city where you only see blight and decay and you hate the leadership? Most people pack up and move to an environment conducive to better mental health.

      1. Steve, we are very different people. I am a skeptic. I look for evidence that statements are true or false. Not everything is one or the other. As I have said, Finch’s ministry of public enlightenment is in overdrive cranking out images we are supposed to believe.

        Steve, using your analogy, if I’m Dorothy, you must be the scarecrow. I want to get back to Kansas, you are mesmerized by Emerald City. Remember the scene when Toto pulls back the curtain and reveals the actual ‘wizard.’ Most of us who post on OIB see behind the curtain.

          1. Oh sure, I provide the comedy and Tom gets the applause!

            You go, Tom! Your enthusiasm is infectious, you have Lisa and Pete as fans!

    1. Harvey, you do not need a Facebook account to read the Connecticut Post. Give McCarthy a break. It was like an oven with intense humidity. So many people and a lack of oxygen. Maybe the blur made it seem like 900.

  7. Mr Grimaldi,
    Can you come up with a “mute” or “unfollow” button so we don’t have to read the Finch paid help commenting on every comment?
    The Finch hired help really ruins it for the people who come here for the news of our city and want to read constructive comments from the people who are not being paid to back the soon-to-be-ex-mayor.

    1. BPT REBEL, could you please identify one Finch person on this blog who has received one dollar from blogging here other than a press release from the Mayor’s office? Identify just one and then identify yourself. I only know a handful of Finch bloggers and can’t imagine anyone of them getting paid.

      I want names!

      Soon to be ex-Mayor? You are kidding, right?

      Were you really referring to the paid Ganim staff on the blog?

  8. I’ve talked to several people who were there who are city employees and were told they SHOULD be there. How many others were there out of fear of their jobs?

    1. The city employees were excited to be there. Donald Day, I do not believe you spoke to any city employee who was there and was told to be there. Most the employees there have been there since Bucci was in office. I did not see one city employee there who was supporting Ganim. So I guess they were not so threatened, Mr. Day. So many city employees supporting Ganim and not one was there! So how pathetic are the several people you spoke to?

      (Several = none.)

  9. Donald–I have heard many city employees, not mayoral appointments, have received letters from the Finch campaign with an accounting of how much they have donated. There was also a gentle reminder of how much they can donate!

    Some recipients perceived it as being Not So Gentle.

    1. I heard many city employees were so petrified they would lose their job, they gave that demanding letter to Ganim and he made the donation for them. The Mary-Jane Foster supporters did not have the same luck.

      I heard city employees who do not contribute are made to sweep the city streets for 20 hours and pick up garbage in Trumbull Gardens.

      I heard city employees pay $500 to the Finch campaign to have a parking spot at city hall.
      I heard all the restrooms are locked and if you did not give a nice donation, no key for you.

      Could you imagine the torture of having to go to Captain’s Cove, have a cocktail, nice spread and chat with a few hundred interesting people? How horrible. Those poor city employees.

  10. Steve, sometimes you really do have your head up your ass. You have no idea what it’s like to be a City employee under the Finch administration. People are harassed and bullied on a daily basis. The number of complaints and lawsuits is far greater than under the past four mayors. Lawsuits are settled and amounts not revealed but the total paid out is in the hundreds of thousands. Not counting outside attorney fees because the city always contracts out. I personally know many employees who were there last night but will vote for Ganim. Seriously Steve, you have to stop giving your opinion on things you know nothing about.

    1. city hall smoker, you are full of shit! Tell the taxpayers some of the lawsuits. You tell tall tales. I do not know one city employee who was there voting for Ganim. But I will tell you what, city hall smoker, I know many workers in city hall who are supporting Ganim who were not there. So why did the others attend? It’s not like the Ganim supporters are low key. They are loud and should probably have their asses kicked out of city hall. Getting back to the many lawsuits. Let’s hear some. Help Joe Ganim or Mary-Jane Foster. Make your post count! Expose the names! You are anonymous. I want to hear all the lawsuits by city employees that are paid off with taxpayer dollars. You make ridiculous allegations and have the opportunity to show you are not just talking garbage. If Finch is not your man then spill the beans! I would also assume you are a Ganim supporter. A Foster supporter would have definitely exposed this bullshit. You are hopeful and naive. Now share!

  11. city hall smoker, it’s good to see Stevie with his head up his own ass, most times he has his head up Finch’s ass!

    Stevie must be on vacation this week?

    1. Jim, I would be lying if I didn’t tell you your post did make me laugh! The visual is hysterical. You will miss me after the 11th, I can assure you!

  12. For the record, I am a longtime City employee and I was at the Cove last night to support the Mayor. I was there because I wanted to be. No one from the Mayor’s office or anywhere else pressured me to be there. I do not respond well to that kind of pressure. Trust me, if anyone had tried to lean on me, everyone in Bridgeport would know about it by now.

    1. John from Black Rock, G-d bless you.

      As everyone knows I have less than 48 hours left to post on Only in Bridgeport since BPT REBEL had Lennie and Ray ban me.

      I was hoping at least one person would shut these lying bastards down.

      I wish I were bullied and harassed on a regular basis working for the city. How about doing your fucking job!!!

      I worked in City Hall for Mayor Moran while every department was undermanned and working eight hours a day on the taxpayers’ dime to get Joe Ganim elected. It is not going to work this time around. If I were the Mayer I’d identify and remove these workers as they are negative and affect the productivity of other workers striving to keep Bridgeport moving forward.

      Thank you John from Black Rock. I can be banished and rest easy!


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