Hunting For Hancocks; And Finch On Pleasure Beach

Lots of candidates for state office hustling signatures to get on the ballot for the Aug. 12 Democratic primary. Auden Grogins, challenging State Rep. Rapid Robert Keeley, is hunting Hancocks in her home neighborhood in Black Rock.

The blonde banshee needs about 250 signatures from registered Democrats in the 129th State Assembly District.

Chico Rivera and Sly Salcedo are combing the South End and environs for signatures to challenge Eze Santiago, the endorsed candidate for the seat being vacated by State Rep. Felipe Reinoso. Sly will formally announce his candidacy Thursday 2 p.m. at the Bridgeport Public Library downtown.

On the East Side State Rep. Andres Ayala is meeting his people to wage a primary against endorsed candidate Lydia Martinez.

State Rep. Chris Caruso, no stranger to securing signatures for a ballot spot, must do so because Carlos Silva won the party backing for Caruso’s seat. And Caruso’s pal in the North End State Rep. Jack Hennessy must also scour signatures even though he’s not being challenged. Say what? Delegates in his legislative district voted for no endorsement so he must petition his way on the ballot. Yeah, it’s a crazy business.

And what about Bill Stewart? Will he hustle the signatures to challenge State Rep. Don Clemons?

And then there’s Marilyn Moore who’s looking at challenging Democrat Anthony Musto in a primary for the seat held by Republican State Sen. Rob Russo. She’ll need roughly 1,000 validated signatures to qualify.

All across the city, in just about every neighborhood, the favorite game in town – qualifying for a primary – is being played out. So, if someone’s knocking on your door it may not be the vacuum cleaner guy, it could be Grogins or Caruso, or a couple of guys named Chico and Sly. I wonder if candidates are doubling up. “Hey, can you get them to sign mine too?”

Petitions must be in by June 10, that should not be a problem for most challengers, then it’s two months of knocking on more doors, banging telephones, formulating mail pieces and beating the crap out of each other. Bombs away!

Finch Speaks About Pleasure Beach
Statement from Finch’s office:

Yesterday morning Mayor Finch attended a forum sponsored by the Bridgeport Regional Business Council to discuss the possibility of Bridgeport’s Pleasure Beach being operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The Mayor would like to make a clarification from the media coverage that appeared today:

“The main purpose for selling Pleasure Beach to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service would be to once again open the area back up for human use while at the same time preserving the wildlife there for future generations to enjoy. The City of Bridgeport simply cannot afford to re-open, operate or provide access to the Pleasure Beach area on its own. This is but one option being considered, and one that State Representative Charles ‘Don’ Clemons and I have been exploring for years now.

“I’m pleased that the idea has sparked debate in our community and I look forward to attending many neighborhood forums to discuss the idea further. This process is still in its infancy stages and is by no means completed. I encourage all Bridgeport residents to keep an open mind going forward in discussions. I look forward to working closely with the East End Community Council, the East End NRZ, Representative Clemons and City Councilmen James Holloway and Andre Baker throughout this process.”



  1. End the War on Drugs

    Although I live in Fairfield, my family, on both sides, is from Bridgeport, and I spent many years working in Bridgeport, and serving on committees and boards there.

    I have followed Bridgeport politics closely for many years. During all this time I have never been excited about a single Bridgeport candidate. But now I am. He is a young lawyer with outstanding credentials and a great issue: ending the war on drugs.

    Sylvester Salcedo, the first and only US military veteran of the Drug War who publicly protested against the War on Drugs eight years ago by returning a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement medal to President Clinton, will announce formally his bid for the 130th State Representative District of Bridgeport on Thursday, May 29, 2008 at 2 pm in the Fine Arts Room of the Bridgeport Public Library (Main Branch) at 925 Broad Street, Bridgeport, CT 06604.

    “The War on Drugs is one of our nation’s longest wars, at home and abroad. It is senseless, wasteful and counterproductive. It is highly discriminatory on a racial and economic basis. I said so on the steps of the US Congress in Washington, DC flanked and supported by Minnesota Republican Congressman Jim Ramstad and California Republican Congressman Tom Campbell in the summer of 2000.

    “Eight years later, the conditions are the same, if not worse, especially for the isolated and abandoned residents of ethnic minority enclaves and neighborhoods like the 130th District.

    “I want to win this State Representative seat to be a leader of change.

    “I want to lead the way to peace, understanding and cooperation, not through the politics of fear, and racial and ethnic discord and conflict.”

  2. Gossip Of The Rialto!

    Tweet! Tweet!!

    Sighting of Big Bird preying on Hancocks in Black Rock.
    One John told the tweety bird that since she had flown the coop that his tree was now an empty nest.

    Old sage Rooster strutting his stuff endorses concept of: “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.”

    Big Bird to get wings clipped in August by Gorilla Monsoon. Let’s get ready to rumble!

  3. Harry Neigher
    Neat talk, but over done, if you want to score an Ace in the whole blog community – please do not speak in code, it’s old, many of us do not care or take the time to understand it, I still think you are cool but be clear.

  4. Monsieur Claude, or is it Monsieur Balls?

    Shouldn’t I be the “Brown Horse” candidate??… from the land of the “Little Brown Brothers” of the former American colony or Commonwealth of the Philippines, 1898-1946, not to be confused with Chico or Mitch, or Amerigo, or Ezequiel who hail from the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, 1898-1952, and now an “Estado Libre Asociado”, Freely Associated State since ’52 to the present…what color is their horse? Although I was born in Minnesota with all the Swedes…Oops, gotta run back to court. Hasta muy pronto.

  5. Black Rockin

    I didn’t mean to take your name in vein or vain.
    Summer Wind concisely deciphered cryptic clauses.
    I will be much more clear with one word.


  6. I am not sure that selling Pleasure Beach to the Feds is a good idea. Nobody but Nobody has actually checked out the Bridge to that Island to see if the mechanics of opening & closing that Bridge do in fact operate. Nobody has checked to see if mechanical parts need to be replaced to make that Bridge operational can be fabricated (I know they can be). Nobody has received an estimate to see how much these replacement parts would cost. I would bet it is a hell of a lot less than a new Bridge.

    Water taxis give me a break!!!

    A message to Finch I think you should work closely with all the aldermen (women) as this beach belongs to all of us. Singling out the east side NRZ and the alderman from that district is wrong. Again will point out that park is owned by all of Bridgeport.

  7. I heard Pleasure Beach was a great place with an amusement park, dancing and entertainment many years ago. I honestly don’t care if the City sells it, just as long as everyone in B-port gets to enjoy it. I’m sure it would take a ton of money to fix it up, but what a nice place for a bird sanctuary, maybe a botanical garden like the Bronx has, maybe a fishing pier, and picnic tables, etc. It would be awesome.

  8. The following appeared in today’s Washington Post:

    Across the country, state and local governments are already hip-deep into budget crises in response to declining revenue from property assessments and real estate transfers. Here in Washington, a dramatic drop off in revenue from business profits and capital gains has wiped out any hope of reducing federal operating deficits that, under the likeliest political and economic scenarios, will exceed $500 billion a year for as far as the eye can see.

    This is another example of an unsustainable equilibrium that has roots in the trade deficit and the credit bubble. Despite the happy talk you might be hearing from the presidential candidates, it presents Americans with a stark and unpleasant choice.

    One option is to raise taxes and leave less money for private spending, which is what many state and local governments have begun to do. The other is to accept lower levels of government service and subsidies, which inevitably will lower the incomes of some households while forcing others to go without services or pay for them privately. Either way, it amounts to a lower standard of living than we thought we had achieved.

    O.P.I.C.s are the answer to this increasing problem and with each passing day, the results become better and better. Such is the beautry of Capitalism: when an inequity exists, the market offers a solution – in this case it’s broadcast on CNBC every day. Jobs are increasingly hard to find but making money becomes easier when your computer becomes a factory-without-a-smokestack. Bridgeport: where knowing the score makes it easier to win.

  9. Just heard some interesting news. The Board of Ed Finance Committee is meeting tonight to vote on Supt. John Ramos’ budget. He had to make some drastic cuts because of the budget crisis. Apparently Ramos met with the unions this morning to give them a heads-up on the list of layoffs. And guess what lovely couple is on the lay-off list…wait for it………wait for it………wait for it……JOHN AND MARY FABRIZI! Plus Michelle Lyons and some other politicos. Gotta love Ramos. He knows how to play the game alright.

  10. I heard a rumor out of City Hall that they are going to be Laying Off the remaining four hairs on Dennis Scinto’s head. This would save about a mil and a half due to the haircut and hairwax savings.

    In Town Committee news, word on the street is Mario was working out a deal with Jack Hennessy for the nomination in exchange for a Fedex work uniform.

    The intention was if Mario couldn’t deliver any favors to his town committee members he could at least deliver your packages to you on time.

    In a battle that is being dubbed as “The Back Vs. The Aorta,” State Representative Don Clemons will be fiercely primaried by Bill Stewart in the 124th District. Whoever stays in the best shape and stays out of Bridgeport Hospital looks to be the winner in this fierce battle.

    Look for Paul Ganim to have his hands all over this race. Can anybody say AB???

  11. Thanks for the Twinkle comment. I just wanted to add my two cents on a few topics.

    Sly, you have a nice website. Seeing you in uniform makes me want to have a casting call for the Bridgeport version of an Officer and a Gentleman.

    Here is the cast so far. If anybody has any suggestions please add them.

    Sly Salcedo as Zack Mayo
    Tom Coble (must keep hat on at all times) as Gunnery Sergeant Emil Foley
    Paul Boucher as Paula Pokrifki
    Chico Rivera as Sid Worley
    Mitch Robles as Officer Candidate Topper Daniels
    Ezequiel Santiago as Officer Candidate Emiliano Della Serra

  12. So I see a lot of folks are hunting for Hancocks. It’s not going to be easy as a lot of people are not home. Most likely they are hard at work to get the little extra cash that Finch wants.
    My driver has been taking me around the Parks and I hear the Finch wants to disband the Park Police and not the Mounted Patrol (I’m still trying to figure out which one is the horse) which is the way to go. No security at the Zoo and no Parks Police spells trouble. Apparently, many Rookie cops don’t seem to like working in Bridgeport and are looking elsewhere and Finch figures that putting the Parks officers as regular officers is the way to go. They will get paid more and get overtime. Does anyone remember the famous Connecticut Post picture of the sleeping cop in Seaside Park?

  13. I see that the “budget crisis” didn’t stop your Superintendent of Schools from getting an increase in his already obscene salary. He will now be making over $225,000. Give me a break! Talk about a poster child for the Board of Education’s bloated administrative salaries. Come on John, set an example.

  14. Yes, In the Know, John Ramos does “know how to play the game”, but it will be the kids that will be the loooosers. We need less games and more leadership from Ramos and the Board. Don’t hold your breath.

  15. Well here we go with the board of Ed. Ramos is going to lay off the people in the trenches. He could lay off one administrator for every 3 para professionals. this greedy bastard has no problem accepting a raise in the face of lay offs. Medina is nothing more than a Ramos stooge. i cant wait for the next time the BOE members come up for election they will pay. I cant wait until the nominating process starts i will work to ensure none of these bums even get the nomination to run. The elected BOE members should be ashamed of themselves. Look in the mirror and tell yourselves you are not Ramos stooges.

  16. Eddie Palmieri,
    I just got woken up five minutes ago by a long-distance phone call from Chennai (Madras) India, it’s 5pm over there, and it’s my wife (Dr. Timi Ryan) just coming out of doing eye surgery. She’s in the clinic library, in 100 degree heat, on the Internet reading up on the OIB site, and she’s demanding to know why you’re casting Paul Boucher instead of her in the role of Paula Pokrifki. She thinks she’s as good-looking as Debra Winger, and I think she’s hotter than Debra Winger. What does Paul have that she doesn’t?

    What do I tell her? I think I’m in political hot water already before I even open my mouth at the press conference at 2pm today. Please advise, Mr. Casting Director.

  17. Robert Russo, where are you ?
    Where is the BOE audit.
    Does Ramos deserve a raise? he is sure doing a great job, what will the drop out rate be this year? I think I get it – let’s see, with the fewer kids we have to educate we then can take the $$ we would spend for them and give it to Ramos. He makes more than the Pope.

  18. Ramos got a raise??? Thats just disgusting when he’s laying people off, this guy has got to go and so does the whole board that supports him. What a damn shame. How come he isn’t laying off some of those top spot jobs, why is it that its only the little guys getting hit? I bet his raise alone could have saved a job. Max is a disgrace, I had a lot of faith in him but not any more, he and the rest of them should be ashamed of themselves. Yeh – Russo, where’s the audit?

  19. wondering – your right, how do the BOE members look themselves in the face? I will never vote for any of that crew ever again. I heard that Ramos has his own press secretary that gets $80K a year, for what? Can’t he speak for himself?

  20. Hey Sly instead of the comic bullshit how about commenting on the school lay offs and the formula used by the state to figure what we get for education

  21. I would like to hear comments from all the candidates on this BOE bullshit. Except maybe from Auden since she was on that board and was just as bad as the ones on there now. We need a bigtime investigation of the BOE, how could they dare give Ramos a raise?


  23. Con – I hope you’re just kidding! Ramos doesn’t deserve half of what he gets. This guy gets more than the governor and for what? I just feel so bad about those people getting laid off. If Ramos had any dignity, he would refuse the raise, but we know that won’t happen.

  24. Sylvester L. Salcedo said his wife was demanding to know why you’re casting Paul Boucher instead of her in the role of Paula Pokrifki in Bridgeport version of an Officer and a Gentleman.

    Then he wrote I think I’m in political hot water already before I even open my mouth at the press conference at 2pm today. Hot water for what? I am sure your wife remembers Dustin Hoffman in “Tootise”.

  25. That’s Ms. Boucher to you sir! And while we’re on the subject of entertainment in the Park City, has the Democratic Party hit an all-time low in finding good qualified city candidates to run for state legislation positions, or is it holding a campaign for circus performers? “Some” of the incumbents that should be getting the endorsments are being side-stepped by inexperienced, personal gain, nepotism candidates that should not be running for dog warden, let alone state rep. positions! Hope voters realize that this country, state, & city is headed for some economic hard times ahead and just voting along political lines alone is not going to work. Voters must vote for the person most qualified to do the job, not a political party.


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