From Gemeem Davis & Callie Gale Heilmann, Co-Directors, Bridgeport Generation Now
“The ruling by Superior Court Judge Barry Stevens that the Ganim Administration violated Bridgeport’s civil service rules and city charter in its appointment of Rebeca Garcia to the position of assistant police chief in December 2019 is yet another example of Bridgeport’s system of political corruption and patronage that permeates from the highest levels of city leadership.
“As Judge Stevens said in his ruling, ‘The city’s overarching intent and goal in the selection of the assistant chief of police was not so much to comply with the civil service rules but rather to allow [former Police Chief Armando] Perez to choose from the ranks whomever he wanted in whatever manner he desired.’
“Sadly, time and time again–from yesterday’s ruling on Acting Police Chief Rebecca Garcia to the previous appointment of the former Police Chief Armando Perez–the Ganim Administration has shown a complete disregard for adhering to basic civil service rules and processes in filling key government positions.
“From a sham police chief search, to lawsuits, to settlements, we’ve paid out upwards of $1.3 million to uphold patronage within the highest levels of our local government–and that doesn’t even include the most recent costs from this latest court case. Moreover, the never ending rulings and reports pointing to the pervasive and systemic political corruption that exists within the Ganim Administration has cost Brideporters confidence in their city government.
“It’s simple: the city of Bridgeport should have an open, transparent, ethical, and merit-based search and hiring process for all department heads, that also includes ample opportunity for public input.”