Foster Qualifies For Primary, ‘Voters Deserve Clear Choice For Change’

Foster hq
Mary-Jane Foster chats with supporters at her headquarters.

Democratic mayoral candidate Mary-Jane Foster on Wednesday received word from Registrar Sandi Ayala she has qualified for the September 16 primary. Foster joins party-endorsed Bill Finch and Joe Ganim on the ballot. Foster needed about 1900 verified signatures from Democratic electors. She qualified by a thin margin. The Foster camp submitted about 3500 signatures, but the process to validate Foster’s petition sheets took longer than anticipated due to a number of bad signatures.

The most efficient way to secure signatures of registered Democrats is to find them at their home. Scouring for masses at festivals, concerts and parks leaves a lot to chance. But the bottom line is Foster will be on the ballot next month.

Statement from Foster:

“Over the past few weeks I’ve taken my case directly to the Democratic voters of Bridgeport and, resoundingly, they’ve agreed that voters deserve a clear choice for change. Let this serve as a message to all: the voters of Bridgeport are involved, they are engaged, and they want a change. No more looking back. No more dwelling on what doesn’t work. We as a city are looking ahead to the change we so desperately need, change that I will deliver as Bridgeport’s next mayor.”

“I’ve been knocking doors, I’ve been making calls, and I’ve been out and around town meeting folks. I will continue to listen to our residents about their needs and priorities and together we will move our great city forward.”



  1. Congratulations to Foster! This is great news and another example people are tired of being the highest-taxed city in the nation. People are tired of a Mayor who ignores the trials and tribulations caused by increasing taxes such as evictions, foreclosure, high rents, blight, homelessness, and not being able to put money to your child’s education.

  2. Stevie, your post doesn’t make sense to me. Mary-Jane is the obvious choice here. We’ve had an opaque-at-best administration for the past 7.5 years, and that’s putting it kindly. Who in hell knows what is going on with the budget and the ill behavior of Finch and his minions? I know I can’t afford the taxes here anymore. Between Tax Bill and the ex-felon, there is only one choice for change here and that is this woman with vision, business sense and a history of bringing jobs to Bridgeport. Congratulations to the Mary-Jane Foster campaign. Great job! Vote Mary-Jane!

  3. Good advice, BptPorter. I normally just skim over his rhetoric, but I had to address his nonsensical post given he just HAD to post first. I have a very good feeling about MJF in this race. The rose between two black and ugly thorns.

    1. First, of course congratulations to Mary-Jane Foster. A woman I worked my ass off for, supported and care about.

      To BptPorter and BallsyInBridgeport, please take each other’s advise and ignore my posts. I will however be respectful and read yours and not dismiss you.

      Mary-Jane Foster is going to have a humiliating defeat and it has nothing to do with Mayor Bill Finch.

      Her inability on a daily basis to go after the one candidate who has her votes is going to guarantee this result. I have urged her over and over and over again and she is not my choice candidate this time around and most likely, this will be such a humiliating defeat it may end her political career.

      I give Ganim credit, he knows how to work the media. If the goal of Mary-Jane Foster is to not insult Ganim supporters so they will support her, she is confused. Joe Ganim pretty much has done a superb job going after every anti-Finch vote with every possible angle. I am very disappointed in the Foster campaign’s inability to go after Ganim. It makes her pretty much invisible. That is a travesty but that is her strategy.

      BptPorter, BallsyInBridgeport, you need not respond to this post. I am not needy for conversation. I am thrilled Mary-Jane Foster is on the ballot and I wish her the best of luck. At this point I am happy she never took any of my advice. Her core supporters are delusional and insulting. That’s fine!

      Good luck to all. Three weeks to go! BptPorter and BallsyInBridgepor,t you may be anonymous and insulting but I value your comments. But like Wicca, your hiding behind an alias and making those comments is laughable.

      1. I think she has done a very good job of pointing out the shortcomings of both Finch and Joe. Do you expect her to eviscerate Joe and ignore Finch? Your guy’s team is doing a Herculean job on Joe. Her 50-day plan is very impressive and what voters who do not live, breathe and eat politics want to hear. She does not need to kneecap anyone with her very smart strategy in place.

        1. I just read the CT Post article where MJF stated the Ganim campaign is spreading rumors MJF is going to publicly support Ganim for Mayor in exchange for a high-level position in Ganim’s administration.

          I want to publicly and unequivocally state MJF’s claims are absolutely false. I am in the main headquarters every day for 5 to 7 hours each day before I knock on doors, and I have NEVER heard this discussed or recommended.

          I am not trying to be fresh, but I rarely hear anyone discuss MJF.

          1. That does not mean it has not been discussed. I don’t believe Ganim started these rumors but I believe one of his advisers may have started this rumor. The rumor is dumb. MJF is a VP at UB. What city job other than mayor could replace that?

          2. I have had discussions with one of his advisers who has suggested MJF endorsing Joe and serving on his administration would be a great idea. Joe even had a sit-down with the RTC to ask for an endorsement. The back office dealings and offers happen all the time. Usually out of earshot of volunteers.

          3. Frank the C Boy, really? I think Maria was very clear it was not being discussed at headquarters. Joe reached out across party lines to many politically active people and groups in the city for weeks before he announced. Getting every anti-Finch vote for his run was his reason to approach these people. Support the strengths of your candidate–if they are strong attacking the supporters of others is usually not necessary.

          4. Maria, I would love to discuss Mary-Jane Foster with you. See, I am one of many. She is certainly a more respectable candidate than the nameless one; okay, Joe Ganim. She is an excellent and formidable candidate. She has given her time and energy to many causes in the city of Bridgeport with very little fanfare and photo opportunities. I may be supporting Mayor Finch for many reasons, but make no mistake about it. If not Finch, I would only trust Mary-Jane Foster to carry on. So Maria, if you ever want an earful that does not brag about the mayor’s accomplishments, I can easily talk about Mary-Jane, a much more respected and revered person in the community and among politicians, head and shoulders above Joseph Ganim.

    2. BptPorter and BallsyInBridgeport,
      You both are onto something but simply ignoring Steven Auerbach will not make him go away. He is a narcissistic gasbag who thinks his opinion is the only one that matters. Look at how he mocks everyone else, scorns us, and derides us with vitriol and sarcasm. He twists words, tries to rationalize and justify the personal attacks he is guilty of and takes any criticism of Bill Finch as a personal insult.

      This is an open forum. Most of us are adult enough to agree to disagree. Mr. Auerbach chooses to bully and annoy and disrupt the flow of opinions on this blog. Watch how he reacts to this. He accused me of “dishing it out but not being able to take it.” The same can be said for him. He also said “You can’t take it,” meaning his never-ending stream of ennui. I can take it but why do I have to take it? Why does anyone else, for that matter?

      1. Bridgeport Kid, I think you are obviously mentally challenged and now I understand. Please please please make me invisible, you are embarrassing yourself. Please please please. Derek Brown, how many times do I have to ask you to stop with your insults? You look silly. Just do not acknowledge me. The three of you can bore each other to tears, kiss each others’ asses and tell each other how you generally bypass my posts. But you don’t. Derek Brown, I will make you invisible and you may respond and continue to insult me. I will not respond to you.

      2. Stevie’s Narcissistic personality disorder is characterized by an over-inflated sense of self-importance, as well as dramatic, emotional behavior that is in the same category as antisocial and borderline personality disorders.

        In addition to these symptoms, Stevie may display arrogance, show superiority, and seek power. In other words, a flucken Finchette!

          1. Hey Steve, only you would refer to me as “mentally challenged.” My writing abilities prove otherwise. I’m not going to engage in a battle of wits with an unarmed opponent.

          2. Bridgeport Kid, make no mistake about it, your writing abilities are exceptional. Your rudeness, sarcastic, insulting comments also make you everything you accuse me of. You are immature, annoying, self-flattering, mean-spirited; like your fan club you are all negative, miserable, cancer-like. I especially like when you have a need to copy and paste entire articles that have nothing to do with the subject matter and then insult others for sending links to humorous anecdotes. When Lennie Grimaldi asks me to stop posting, I will. Until then, you and I will enjoy each other’s company, damn it!

  4. Congratulations, Mary-Jane. I know the hard work you and your campaign put into getting signatures, waiting to hear if you’ve qualified, and still soldiering on.

    1. She is pretty solid in high-turnout Black Rock and with Moore behind her in Brooklawn. Of course there is the Stafstrom/Finch group in Brooklawn and Black Rock. Voters are at best finicky, each of these candidates have made missteps in Black Rock, so it will possibly be the least of three evils for a lot of voters.

  5. The Registrar of Voters is playing more political games. Mary-Jane Foster’s campaign submitted more than 3,500 petition signatures. And yet the registrar dragged her feet attempting to forestall or derail the Foster campaign. The mere fact they are allowed to do this can raise questiosn about the validity of Foster’s campaign and harm her fundraising efforts.
    The law should require no candidates can be certified until a determination is reached on all candidates who have submitted petitions.
    More dirty politics courtesy of the Bridgeport Democratic machine.

  6. From the Connecticut Post, October 6, 2014:
    “If there is not a mechanism for barring Bridgeport’s Democratic Registrar of Voters from overseeing upcoming gubernatorial election, there should be.

    “Santa Ayala, that Democratic registrar, should resign from the job. Voters of the city simply cannot have any continued confidence in her ability to perform the fundamental, uncomplicated task of keeping track of who is a registered voter. It is not rocket science.

    “It’s unlikely that this career Democrat will give up her juicy spot on the public payroll. Just the other day she told a reporter, ‘I’m not going anywhere,’ when asked for comment on a call from the Republican candidate for Secretary of the State that she should resign.

    “The city of Bridgeport, under Democratic Mayor Bill Finch, standing on the shoulders of his predecessors, is moving forward in so many ways.

    “The energy in a re-emerging downtown is palpable. Finch is pushing the city into the forefront with his green economy initiative. A strengthening entertainment scene–between summer Thursdays on McLevy Green, to A-list acts at the Klein Auditorium and the Arena at Harbor Yard continue to draw people in from out of town.

    “But it’s with some sort of almost twisted nostalgia the city can’t shake its dalliance with a throwback Democratic machine system that unfailingly produces one embarrassment after another.

    “And these outrageous episodes are equally effective in reminding out-of-towners–never mind the legislators who ultimately decide how much money will come to the city–that Bridgeport remains at its core a shady place.

    “Ayala’s daughter, Christina, was arrested… and charged with voter fraud, one accusation being that she used a phony address both in voting and in winning a state representative’s seat in 2012.

    “A year ago, based on reporting done by Hearst Connecticut Media, the State Elections Enforcement Commission concluded that mother and daughter conspired in that plan, and recommended the Chief State’s Attorney prosecute them both.

    “We’ll presume Ayala knew where her daughter was living and we’ll presume she knew that the address listed in the records was not the same. Four years ago, Ayala was at the center of a fiasco in which the city of Bridgeport ran out of the paper ballots for the gubernatorial election. It was not until the Friday of election week that Democrat Dannel P. Malloy was named a 6,000 vote winner over Republican Tom Foley.

    “Another election for governor will occur in 30 days. It features the same two candidates and is by all accounts a race that is just as close.

    “The city and the state should not have to go through another Bridgeport blunder. But with Ayala continuing as one of the people in charge of the conduct of the election, it will be flawed by definition.

    “She is, technically, an elected official.

    “Bill Finch and Secretary of the State Denise Merrill, also a Democrat, for a variety of reasons have an interest in making sure this election runs smoothly and fairly. They need to figure out a way to make sure Ayala is on the sidelines.”

    1. Kid–The registrar of voters is elected. Are you trying to say democracy does not always work in BPT? If you want to cast blame for BPT having a ‘sketchy’ registrar of voters, look in the mirror.
      I think it would be illegal for the mayor or secretary of the state to interfere with the registrar of voter’s assigned duties. If the registrar has committed some crime, it is not the mayor who is responsible for investigating or prosecuting. The mayor is the executive branch of city government. Investigating and prosecuting is the responsibility of the state Judicial Branch. However, your rant was an entertaining piece of fiction.

      1. The registrar of voters is there to protect the rights of voters, not protect the job security of a lame-duck mayor. Santa Ayala has broken the law more than a few times; the state’s attorney hasn’t formally charged her yet.

        1. YET? How long ago was this? If they have not charged her by now, they never will. Crimes are not easier to prosecute as time goes on. Witnesses disappear, die and forget. Records are destroyed. People lose interest.
          As with much of the rumors and innuendo that haunt BPT politics, this is just another non-starter. For a place with SO much corruption and crime, why is Joe the only one who went to jail? Is it possible the rumors are just rumors? Little more than nonsense and smear campaigns?

  7. It seems like Sandi was able to validate Ganim’s petitions in a matter of days and everyone else it took weeks.
    Once again, something fishy in the registrar’s office. Playing favorites like we are about to see in the Absentee process.

  8. There are voters who are nauseated at the prospect of a convicted felon reclaiming the mayoralty; there are others sickened at the thought of a pathological liar being elected to another four-year term. Joe Ganim and Bill Finch and their respective allies have been waging a war for the hearts and minds of the city’s registered voters. Both have won a few battles; at this point it looks as though they are neck-and-neck.

    Santa Ayala is a Finch devotee and makes no effort to hide the affiliation. She tried to block Ms. Foster’s candidacy in 2011, a move that landed the registrar’s office in court. Foster prevailed and lost that year’s election, but not by much.

    It would appear the people of the city of Bridgeport are growing increasingly fatigued by the shenanigans and sleazy tactics employed by the Democratic Town Committee to maintain its domination of City Hall and the mayor’s office. A vote for Mary-Jane Foster or Rick Torres is a vote for reform, progress and the future. Joe Ganim and Bill Finch are endorsed and backed by different factions of the DTC; a vote for either will not move the city forward or backward, just keep it on the same road to perdition.

  9. Congratulations Mary-Jane, you are just what the residents of Bridgeport need, an intelligent business-oriented lady whose integrity and character is beyond reproach.

  10. Congratulations, Mary-Jane.

    Now can those of you canvassing for Finch (one of them is a Fairfield resident) in Black Rock … please please please … stop telling us a vote for Mary-Jane Foster is a vote for Joe Ganim?

    Mayor Finch tried unsuccessfully to take away our vote for the Board of Ed through his falsely sold and voter-rejected charter revision.

    Now Mayor Finch, through his advocates, is telling us how to use our vote? Yes, the very same mayor who said “Democracy doesn’t always work.”

    Just yesterday, Finch said in his interview with Colin McEnroe:
    “I fully intend on winning the Democratic primary. And I fully intend on winning the general election … I’m going to win the primary that’s all there is to it. … I trust the voters.” (47:20 on)

    1. Bill Finch:
      “I fully intend on winning the Democratic primary. And I fully intend on winning the general election … I’m going to win the primary that’s all there is to it. … I trust the voters.”


      1. Well, the voters don’t trust you, TAX BILL.

        Lydia Martinez at the top of your ticket is a testament to the type of judgement you and your administration use every day. You care nothing for the City, Tax Bill. You care only about holding onto your job and keeping your phony bunch of cronies in theirs. Lydia Martinez. Seriously? What a slap in the collective voter face of Bridgeport.

        What you are getting ready to do is STEAL this election (AGAIN) if at all possible. Lydia threatened to jump ship and take her illegal AB operation with her, and you caved and put her at the frigging top of your ticket. That’s what’s going on here. You are no better than the convicted felon you hurl the same insult at daily.

        Oh, and Knock-knock. Who’s there? ANOTHER SHOOTING ON THE EAST SIDE LAST NIGHT. Can we call in the State Police sometime before the violent crime statistics hit a 100% increase? How about before one more death?

          1. Steve,
            Everything you have said about me–that I am mentally challenged, that I can’t take it (meaning the shit you shovel out toward the rest of us on a daily basis here), that I engage in character assassination, blah-blah-blah, ad nauseam–really reads like a self-description. You just can’t stand it there are people on this blog who are obviously more intelligent and thoughtful than you.

            I have contacts in the Finch campaign. From what I’ve heard from them, they would like it if you limited (or more preferably, STOPPED) your commenting here. Finch has an uphill slog for re-election; having a jackass like you “volunteering” is akin to wearing lead boots in a 500-meter relay race.

          2. Bridgeport Kid, all you need to do is name one, only one, and I will stop. I have heard from so many people who say they want to stick needles in their eyes after reading your constant assaults. Does it ever stop? How many times do I have to ask you to make me invisible and yet you constantly harass me? I feel like you are stalking me and to be honest it is giving me the creeps. Oh yes, again name me just one individual, just one.

          3. Steve, there’s a simple solution to this problem: MAKE YOURSELF INVISIBLE. Make yourself scarce. Get a real life.

          4. Kid, Hartford and New Haven have had the same or more shootings. They have more cops than BPT. Greenwich has not had any shootings and they have fewer cops. Unless we put a cop on every corner, cops are not a solution to this problem. These shootings in urban areas are simply gang/drug violence exacerbated by the lousy economy. Unless you want to turn into a police state (city), law enforcement is not a solution. Can you honestly say a police department that supports Ganim is not part of the problem? Finch curtailed police OT, took cops out of office jobs and put them back on the streets, and generally put the cops back to work. You think it is possible the cops are not doing their best to solve this problem and save face for mayor Finch (not their favorite guy)?

  11. Finch is going to have a humiliating defeat and it has nothing to do with Ganim or Foster.

    His inability on a daily basis to go after the candidates who have the votes is going to guarantee this result. I have Finch over and over and over again and he is not my choice candidate this time around and most likely, this will be such a humiliating defeat it may end Finch’s political career.

        1. Derek Brown, of course I do, you idiot! You can’t help responding to every one of my posts. No matter how many times I ask you to please treat me as invisible, you never fail to give me one of your adult-like insults.

          1. If you want to be treated as “invisible,” then just don’t post. It’s that simple.

  12. Case closed against plumber who criticized Finch
    By Brian Lockhart
    Published 4:03 pm, Wednesday, August 19, 2015
    BRIDGEPORT – The city’s personnel office has dropped a probe into a plumber who accused Mayor Bill Finch’s administration of flushing puppies down the drain on a rival candidate’s Facebook page.

    Robert Miller had hired an attorney, John Walsh, Jr. of Branford, after he was ordered to attend a July 10 meeting in the labor relations office for attacking the administration earlier that month on ex-Mayor Joseph Ganim’s campaign Facebook site.

    “I’m glad Joe Ganim likes dogs,” wrote Miller. “I remember when the Finch administration flushed two puppies down the drain at the animal shelter with a 5000 PSI hose from the Water Pollution Control.”

    While some might dispute Miller’s description, his criticism was based on a well-publicized 2009 incident when two puppies were trapped in a waste pipe at the animal shelter.

    Miller was called to the scene.

    There was a debate about whether to try to rescue the dogs by cutting through the shelter floor.

    Finch in a subsequent statement back in 2009 said that, given the floor was six to eight inches of concrete atop rock ledge, explosives would have been required, causing “inhumane” stress to the puppies.

    A decision was made to instead flush the dogs out with a hose into a sewer pipe for retrieval.

    “Sadly,” Finch explained, “When the public facilities worker volunteered to descend into the sewer manhole, at some personal risk, in order to retrieve the puppies … it was discovered that the puppies failed to survive the ordeal.”

    Miller back in 2009 publicly questioned the decision not to open the floor on television news.

    According to a source, labor relations staff during the recent July 10 meeting with Miller initially told the plumber they were concerned he had information about an incident that had not been reported to city officials.

    But, the source said, Labor Relations Director Lawrence Osborne, a member of the Democratic Town Committee who voted at that group’s convention to endorse Finch over Ganim, then aggressively questioned Miller about trying to implicate Finch directly.

    Osborne also, the source said, asked Miller if he would level similar accusations at a Ganim administration.

    The city initially declined to comment on Miller’s case.

    But on Thursday Brett Broesder, a spokesman for Finch, said, “The case in question has been closed.”

    Walsh in late July wrote to the labor relations department and warned that office to stop harassing his client.

    “Mr. Miller was well within his rights to engage in the conduct your office is investigating,” Walsh wrote to Osborne and another labor relations staffer. “The city would be best advised to … drop the investigation into his Facebook comments and allow Mr. Miller to work free from your harassment and retaliation.”

    Walsh also alleged that the Facebook probe was actually part of a harassment campaign launched against his client in May after Miller had filed a complaint with the state claiming he had been ordered to falsify records.

    Walsh said Miller was “issued a written warning for allegedly failing to answer his city issued cellular telephone after hours.”

    “Two days later … Mr. Miller was suspended for 30 days without pay,” Walsh wrote. “A cursory review of the disciplinary letters raise serious questions regarding the validity of the charges.”

    “In fact,” Walsh wrote, “It appears the recent investigation launched by your office into Facebook comments … is a continued act of the retaliation against my client.”

    Walsh and Miller did not return requests for comment.

    Politics and city personnel frequently mix in Bridgeport.

    Besides serving on the Democratic Town Committee, municipal employees, including those appointed by the mayor, are also allowed to govern as elected members of the City Council.

    And the unions often endorse candidates and encourage members to get out the vote.

    Finch so far has the backing of the fire union and of the National Association of Government Employees, while the police are in Ganim’s corner despite his 2003 conviction for public corruption.

    Last week one retired union leader, Valerie Sorrentino, who is supporting Ganim, accused the Finch administration of using the labor relations department to create “an atmosphere of bullying and intimidation (that) results in a significant cost to the taxpayers in outside attorney fees and settlements.”

  13. For the moment, I will only comment on my district, the 130th. Based mostly on hard data (positive IDs and such) and a bit of a gut feeling, it appears Mayor Finch will win the 130th, Mary-Jane will finish second and Joe Ganim will come in third.

    I could be wrong but I don’t believe I am. BTW, congratulations on qualifying, MJF.

        1. No Bob, we are talking the one thing only Bill Finch can talk about. Steelpointe, housing on the waterfront at UB, 330 housing units, a charter school and grocery store that will change the city image from I-95, downtown redevelopment, a new train station, new parks, schools, fuel cell technology, etc etc etc. You know Bob, the only things that can attract developers and lower our taxes. The little things!

          1. Oh, some of those things Bill Finch talks about and never delivers.
            The waterfront housing in the South End. That developer could barely handle the remodel of the bank in Fairfield to a Plan B Burger. Yeah, he’s a Plan B developer.
            The new train station? Twenty years from now Steve will still be talking about a new train station. Fuel cell technology the taxpayers fund though tax breaks.
            Bill Finch is still struggling implementing Joe Ganim and John Fabrizi’s plans. He has had none of his own. That’s probably why Fabs endorsed him because Finch’s failures make the Fabulous one look good.
            The momentum of their Tax Bills. That’s the only momentum they see.

          2. Okay, Bob Walsh. People do not want to see Bridgeport’s changing image, they want a candidate who makes them feel they live in a shit hole. You offer us Foster and then there is Ganim, or we have forward momentum that will seize the day.

    1. John, I’m not very familiar with how Black Rock factors in to the bigger picture, but if you’re correct, does Finch win by a big-enough margin to offset the other side of the City that is Ganim territory? Since I haven’t seen hard data from my district (132), I’m wondering the same for Brooklawn.

      1. Lisa, the other side of the city is Ganim territory? Are you kidding? Does your campaign give false information to keep you motivated? Seriously! Have you even seen polls other than Maria’s poll of Hooker? 🙂 Ganim is kicking Foster’s ass but he is trailing Finch everywhere.

          1. Actually Lisa, what you said was does it offset the other side of the city, which is Ganim territory. I thought you were making a statement instead of an assumption. My bad. I thought you were looking at a fake poll.

    2. John from Black Rock, MJF won Black Rock School by slightly less than 60 votes in 2011. All we need is for her to stay competitive.

      Are you stating Mayor Finch is going to win Aquaculture school as well? You referenced the 130th, not just Black Rock School.

  14. Jennifer, you may very well be correct. I may in fact be completely wrong, but if polls are truthful, she will wish she had kicked Ganim’s ass first and thne went after Finch. Those of us supporting the Mayor are looking to keep the momentum going forward. Most people voting for the Mayor are solid. Joe Ganim has most of the anti-Finch vote and if you do not see a red flag, then it must be in my mind. I am supporting Finch. The fact neither Finch nor Ganim acknowledge Mary-Jane is because the polls tell them she is no threat. I wouldn’t mind seeing some fight from Mary-Jane. I do not think Finch has done a Herculean job going after Ganim at all. You haven’t seen anything yet. Calling Ganim a felon or a convict is just silly banter. The public really wants details about Ganim thousands of new voters over the years do not know. I thought Foster would go for Ganim’s jugular before attempting to get the Finch votes. Now it will be interesting to watch the strategy unfold.

    It was great meeting so many Bridgeporters at the Vasco De Gama club. The food was okay and the company was excellent. Mayor Finch gave a terrific speech. I was surprised to see a few Ganim supporters but hey, I guess they have friends in both camps also. What I did find strange was the guys taking photographs from their cars as people entered. I guess that is Bridgeport politics.

  15. Insightful editorial in this morning’s Connecticut Post, “One more step toward Sound renewal.” It begins:

    “The 582-page study with the unwieldy title, “Dredged Material Management Plan and Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement, Long Island Sound, Connecticut, New York and Rhode Island,” a tome put together by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England district, is not exactly light reading.

    “Nearly all of Connecticut’s ports and rivers–including Bridgeport Harbor, the Housatonic River, Stamford and Greenwich harbors–are included in the study.

    “The elephant–no, make that the whale–in the room is the cost of doing the work, which will be a battle for another day. The report deals primarily with the options for handling the dredged material once the work is under way.

    “Speaking of money, though. There are many reasons to clear passageways and deepen channels and harbors, not the least of which is the potential economic impact. The study puts a figure of $9.4 billion a year–and 55,720 jobs–as the contribution of navigation-dependent activity in the three-state sound region.

    “Additionally, according to the report, navigation-dependent activity generates some $1.6 billion in federal and state tax revenue.”

    So what are we waiting for? Dredging Bridgeport’s harbor, one of only three deep-water ports in the state, will bring a large portion of those projected 55,720 jobs to town, and they will be permanent high-paying jobs requiring skilled labor. Loading, unloading and staffing container ships, barges, tankers, long-liners and other commercial vessels requires a lot of manpower. Dockhands, stevedores, heavy equipment operators, merchant seamen, wheelhouse crews and other positions will be available.

    Bridgeport has a proud nautical past. It should be our future as well.

  16. Now that Mary-Jane Foster has qualified, I am certain she will pick up that glove and get in the game. It should not be difficult reclaiming your votes that have temporarily gone to Ganim.


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