My friends at the Connecticut Post let Mayor Bill Finch off the hook when they wrote this:
Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch is quietly working behind the scenes in the General Assembly to extend a moratorium and postpone paying as much as $20 million in city contributions for police and firefighter pensions.
The issue has been lingering a dozen years, back to when Mayor Joseph P. Ganim gambled on selling bonds and making profits in the stock market, which fell a couple times before finally tanking precipitously in 2008, costing the city half of a $350 million investment.
In 2009, legislation that would allow the city to delay further contributions for two years failed in the last days of the General Assembly, but it was added to the state budget approved in early September after a summer of partisan wrangling.
This year, Finch hopes to have the measure included in language tacked on to the state’s two-year budget, which starts July 1. Such a step would avoid an up-or-down vote on the pension issue alone during the legislative session, which runs through June 8.
The mayor has put off city contributions to pension payments in the past because he didn’t want to raise taxes beyond what he had already raised. And now, in an election year, he especially doesn’t want to raise them.