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Marian Evans Out As Health Director, The Political Fallout? Plus: Jodi’s Jail Update, Is Hamden Now Possible?

February 5th, 2010 · 69 Comments · Development and Zoning

Update: Dr. Marian Evans has spent her final day as city health director.

An email sent from the mayor’s office to Health Department employees explained that Friday was her final day. She’ll be replaced in the short term by William Quinn, recently retired after 21 years as New Haven’s director of health. Meanwhile a search for a new health director will take place, according to Mayor Bill Finch.

I heard from several Health Department employees this weekend who report that Evans, who has strong roots in the city, was well regarded. Clearly, Evans and the mayor did not get along and more information will come out regarding the mayor’s decision not to reappoint her. Evans has solid contacts in the black community and we’ll see how this plays out politically. Evans serves as president of the board of directors of the Witness Project of Connecticut, a support organization for breast and cervical cancer victims, founded by Marilyn Moore who lost a close Democratic State Senate primary to Anthony Musto in 2008. Moore’s name is being floated by some city pols as a potential mayoral candidate next year. In the short term, supporters of Evans see a black woman being replaced by a white male.

News release from Mayor Finch:

Dr. Evans Appointment as City Health Director Expires; Mayor Finch to Appoint William Quinn as Acting Health Director

WIC program to transition to outside service provider

BRIDGEPORT, CT (February 5, 2010) – Mayor Bill Finch today announced that Marian Evans’ appointment as Director of the City’s Health and Social Services department has expired. Effective immediately, Mayor Finch will appoint William Quinn, former Health Director for the City of New Haven, as the Acting Director of Health for a period of 90 days. The City will work with the DPH to immediately begin a public search process for a permanent appointee for the position for the department.

“We wish Dr. Evans well in her future endeavors and thank her for her many years of service to the City,” said Mayor Finch. “We welcome Mr. Quinn, whose commitment to public health spans nearly 30 years, 21 of those as Director of Health in the City of New Haven. We look forward to his leadership in charting a new course for the department.”

Quinn retired Feb. 1 from his position in the New Haven Department of Health. He received a Master’s of Public Health in Health Services Administration from Yale University School of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Public Health in 1975, and has spent his entire career in public health. He resides in New Haven.

“The Connecticut Department of Public Health will provide assistance and support during this period of transition to ensure that residents of Bridgeport continue to have full time public health services,” said DPH Commissioner Dr. J. Robert Galvin. “We look forward to working with Bill Quinn and are confident he will provide a high level of public health leadership to the people of Bridgeport.”

Also today, the City announced that the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women Infants and Children (WIC), currently operated by the City, will be transitioned to another service provider as of October 1, 2010. The state DPH plans to solicit Requests for Proposals (RFP) from community service agencies, social service agencies, medical and/or health facilities to run the program. This operation model is currently in use in communities such as New London, Norwich, Bristol, Windham and New Haven.

“The demand for this program has been growing statewide, mostly due to the downturn in the economy and job losses. The increase in population to be served here in the City of Bridgeport, and the surrounding towns we serve, has made it difficult for our department to successfully meet the current demands,” said Iris Molina, director of the City’s Social Services department.

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children serves to safeguard the health of low-income women, infants, and children up to age 5 who are at nutritional risk by providing nutritional assessment and education, breastfeeding support, referrals to health care and nutritious foods to supplement diets.

Jodi’s Jail news release. You know what I say, stick it in Hamden! Must be painful for Jodi to say something nice about the Big Wave.

Governor Rell: Bridgeport Alternatives ‘Not Promising,’ But Review Continues

Governor Thanks Caruso, Musto for Suggesting Hamden Alternative – Asks Bridgeport Lawmakers to Discuss Issue with Hamden Delegation

Governor M. Jodi Rell today announced that she is continuing to review six alternative locations proposed by the City of Bridgeport for a planned secure juvenile treatment center for girls, but said a preliminary review suggested none of the alternative sites were likely to prove suitable for the facility.

Governor Rell also thanked state Representative Christopher Caruso (D-126) and state Senator Anthony Musto (D-22) of Bridgeport, who this week suggested that the state consider locating the treatment center at the now-closed High Meadows Residential Facility in Hamden instead. The Governor asked the two legislators to contact their colleagues in the Hamden delegation to ascertain their interest and concerns about having the treatment center sited in their community.

Current plans call for building the facility for girls on state-owned land on Virginia Avenue in Bridgeport. The project has been under discussion with Bridgeport officials and residents since at least July 2008, and Governor Rell has repeatedly noted that the state has been without a residential treatment facility for juvenile girls since Long Lane School was closed in 2003.

Last month, after some residents and members of the Legislature announced their opposition to the Virginia Avenue site, the Governor agreed to give Bridgeport a month to propose alternative locations, provided they met criteria developed by the state Department of Public Works (DPW). That deadline expired today.

“One way or another, we must build this facility,” said Governor Rell. “The girls who will be served there have already gone far too long without a proper place to get the help they need – and that has to be the overriding concern. This will not be a ‘jail,’ as critics would have it. It will be a residential facility, a place that will be far more home-like than state buildings most people are used to seeing.”

For that reason, the Governor noted, Caruso and Musto are incorrect in claiming that the Virginia Avenue site – which is zoned for residential housing – would not be suitable for the planned facility.

“Our initial review of the six locations proposed by Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch and the Bridgeport delegation is not promising,” the Governor said. “Some sites require environmental impact assessments or are in environmentally sensitive areas; others are in flood plains. Nevertheless, I have directed the DPW to continue working with the Mayor and the delegation as they do a more comprehensive review of the five locations.

“At the same time, I have asked Representative Caruso and Senator Musto – who suggested High Meadows as an alternative location – to check with their colleagues in the Hamden delegation to see whether that community would be receptive to the idea,” Governor Rell said. “I have also asked the DPW to review the High Meadows site in greater detail to see whether we could, in fact, locate the new facility there.”

The six sites proposed by Bridgeport as possible alternatives are:

774 East Main Street, Bridgeport

2101 Commerce Drive & 29 Cornwall Street (rear), Bridgeport

Fairchild Memorial Park (portion), Trumbull (owned by City of Bridgeport)

Church Hill Road & Route 59, Fairfield (Fairchild Wheeler Golf Course) (owned by City of Bridgeport)

784 Fairfield Avenue, 804 Fairfield Avenue, 816 Fairfield Avenue, 836 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport

1759 State Street, 1524 & 1550 Railroad Avenue, 1815 State Street, 1835 Fairfield Avenue #1837, 1851 Fairfield Avenue, 1857 Fairfield Avenue, 1863 Fairfield Avenue, 1865 Fairfield Avenue, 1887 Fairfield Avenue

Governor Rell said the 10-member state Bond Commission is expected to approve the project whenever it is placed on the agenda. State Senator Eileen Daily (D-33), co-Chair of the Finance Committee, has committed to vote for the project at the next Bond Commission meeting.

No Bond Commission meeting is planned for February, meaning DPW will have additional time to conduct a full analysis of both the suggested Bridgeport sites and the High Meadows site.

The 36,000-square-foot center will accommodate girls 18 years old or younger who have been convicted of a delinquent offense. The facility will be relatively small, with 16 secure beds and 8 beds for girls transitioning from the secure center back to community residential facilities. DCF has worked with the advocacy community to design the facility and the program exclusively to meet the specific needs of girls.

Statement from Mayor Finch re: Virginia Avenue

I remain completely opposed to a treatment center being built by the state in the Virginia Avenue neighborhood. I am pleased that Governor Rell and her administration is still considering alternate sites particularly outside of the City of Bridgeport and not in our neighborhoods. I have valued my close working relationship with the Governor over many years. I am, however, very disappointed that I have still not heard directly from her on this issue despite repeated attempts.

Over the past thirty days, I have worked with my team to thoroughly pursue as many alternate locations as possible. These zoning and development experts reported to me and to the state delegation that no current sites in Bridgeport including Virginia Avenue satisfy the state’s own criteria – particularly that it meets existing zoning requirements. The Virginia Avenue site is currently a residentially zoned neighborhood and therefore is unsuitable. It is incredibly disappointing that the Governor’s staff continues to insist that Virginia Avenue is an appropriate site despite the fact that it is clearly in the middle of a family neighborhood.

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69 Comments so far ↓

  • town committee

    Another casualty of the Finch wrecking crew. Let’s see who we have on the list starting with Dr. Evans then we have:
    Riccio
    Minopoli
    Abate
    Jacobs
    Tax Collector
    John Gomes
    Carol Curry
    New Police Chief Quits
    Mike Lupkus
    Michele Mount
    Rina Bakalar
    These are not the normal changes made when a mayor first takes office. The number I have is 12, I am sure I missed someone. You talk about a reign of terror this is it. No wonder the members of the council who work for the city or have family members who work for the city sit on their hands.

  • Grin Ripper

    With all the double-dipping going on maybe Finch should open up an ice-cream shop.

  • enlightened

    Oh what the heck, it’s Friday. Let’s see if we can start trouble:

    Any idea if the resignation is tied to Bill & Jodi’s Juvie Jail?

    • LennieGrimaldi

      Interesting you should bring that up. I don’t think it has anything to do with Jodi’s Jail, but employees that work in the Health Department building on East Main Street say it’s the unhealthy Health Department. Place is a mess, needs lots of work. So let the state take it over! What say you Jodi? I hear, by the way, Jodi’s saying that none of the city’s alternate sites for her jail meet the state’s rigid building requirements. State Rep. Chris Caruso and State Senator Anthony Musto have been urging the state to retrofit High Meadows, the phased-out boys’ detention facility in Hamden, for the girls’ facility. Why not?

      • Joel Gonzalez

        The jail may have some to do with it Lennie. We keep hearing the city talk about what a nasty building the Health Department is. For about 15 years now, the city of Bridgeport rents a building on River Street from none other than Sal DiNardo. The building is the headquarters for the Narcotics and Vice unit of the Bridgeport Police Department. Want to talk about fucked-up buildings? The River Street facility wins the prize, yet the city rents it from Sal at over $100,000 a year.

        Lennie this is part of a political strategy.

        “The demand for this program has been growing statewide, mostly due to the downturn in the economy and job losses. The increase in population to be served here in the City of Bridgeport, and the surrounding towns we serve, has made it difficult for our department to successfully meet the current demands,” said Iris Molina, director of the City’s Social Services department.

        With all due respect to Iris Molina, the above statement is bullshit. I work on the first floor where the majority of the WIC program’s activities take place. There is no difficulty being encountered by the WIC staff in meeting the demands of the WIC participants. The WIC office opens at 8:30a.m. to 4:00p.m. On Mondays and Wednesdays it’s open ’til 7:00p.m. There are times of the month when they are really busy, but there are always empty seats in the waiting area and plenty of staffers to meet the demand. I spoke with WIC staffers and they were told today that by October they will not have a job. Lennie, giving control of the administration of the WIC program to another Social Service agency gives such agency control of critical data that can be used for political gain. Having control of the list of names, address, and phone numbers of such a large number of poor people gives the holder of such list political leverage and power. Register them as Democrats and Bingo!

  • Mojo

    *** Whatever the reason for Ms. Evans departure, it can’t be good? However, I wish her well in whatever she decides to do & “good health” doing it. *** New ice-cream shop opening up on Broad St. called “7 Deadly Flavors,” right where Chase Bank was located! *** Go JETS? *** I mean GO METS! ***

  • harley76

    The headlines should read “Mayor Finch celebrates black history month by firing the only African American women on his staff.” I just watched a documentary about the first school integrations and how those poor kids had to be protected by the national guard. We have come a long way since then. Except today 4 white men in the city of Bridgeport mayor’s office took us back 50 years. I see this as the nail in Finch’s coffin. This was a women that is well known and liked by everyone. Problem is she wouldn’t play the game. Watch for the black community to rally around her and take Finch down because of this.

    • Joel Gonzalez

      harley76, that remains to be seen. I remember when Joe Ganim terminated Roberto Garcia as head of the Health Department. The rallies that took place days after were the start of my activism and political involvement. Garcia was never reinstated. Times are different now that minorities are the majority on the City Council. The biggest blame for all this lies on the hands of the 12 City Council members who are a majority, but lack the backbone to lead.

  • city hall smoker

    Finch fires another outspoken, competent woman, only this one happens to be a prominent member of the black community. Come on. Are we on that show “Punked?” Please tell me that these last two years have been a series of Punked episodes and that it all didn’t really happen. Because no one in his right mind would do this if he wanted to be re-elected, right?

  • Bruce Lee

    Lies Lies and more lies from Finch. My sister works in the WIC program. She makes a little more than $20K but she enjoys working with the young mothers and their children who need the services at the health dept. The problems in WIC have nothing to do with Marian Evans but everything to do with Iris and Veronica who head up Social Services and manage the program day-to-day. They are extremely secretive and provide no support to the workers. The State WIC people have been monitoring the WIC office for month and have noted problems. Instead of sharing the findings with the staff and working to solve them, Veronica has been writing people up and even suspended the WIC program supervisor. My sister says that some of them have gone to Marian Evans but she could not help. Iris has an arrangement where she reports to CAO Andy Nunn and they cut out Marian Evans. So to blame Evans for the state taking away WIC is a bald-faced lie. Blame Iris and Veronica and Andy Nunn as it was under their watch. Get your facts straight before you malign someone in the newspapers.

  • town committee

    A new wrinkle emerges from the girls’ detention center planned for Virginia Ave. Leo Arnone, chief of the state Bureau of Juvenile Services now states that in addition to their other problems many of the girls are suicidal. Interesting!!! Why are the girls who are suicidal not in a mental institution?
    Mr. Arnone stated he visited the Hamden site and he now claims this former boys’ prison is not suitable for girls as it will require $7 million in updating. How the hell does he know this?
    Here is a suggestion knock the damned buildings in Hamden down and build the new building you planned for Bpt at the Hamden site;
    He also worries about bus routes for visiting parents. That is just so much bullshit. You are worried about parents taking the freaking bus!!!
    Hey Mr. Arnone how about worrying about the hard-working people in the Virginia Ave neighborhoods who are going to see their property values drop when this jail is built? How about the hard-working people who will have to see this prison every day?
    Could it be the golf course is not good enough because it is in Fairfield? It has bus service and it is not polluted. Could it be Fairchild Park in Trumbull is not good enough because it is in Trumbull?
    I have dealt with these state people before on a professional level and I can tell you it is sometimes hard to tell who the administrators are and who the clients are. These people live in another world and to tell the truth they are a quarter short of a dollar.

  • Bruce Lee

    My sister was at the so-called health dept party at the Holiday Inn. She said that the first part was a training for staff on how to handle the H1N1 crisis. After the training there was a DJ paid for in cash by the employees. There was no alcohol or bar in the area, people had to go to the Blue Martini if they wanted a drink. No mis-appropriation of funds. If Finch dismissed Evans because her contract was up then why did he leak damaging and untrue information to the CT Post? If he is doing a search for a new director then leave Evans there until they pick someone. Why bring in an old retread from New Haven who is not familiar with our city? Where is John Fabrizi on this, he hired her.

  • city hall smoker

    If what your sister says is true (and I have no reason to believe it’s not), then these are trumped-up charges just like what they did to Ralph Jacobs. I find it VERY hard to believe that Dr. Evans would risk her job and reputation over a $2,000 Holiday inn bill. I agree with Bruce. If they wanted to terminate her then just do it. Don’t lie and attempt to destroy her. She needs to get a good lawyer and sue their asses off. I hear that Tom Bucci is available.

    • Joel Gonzalez

      You ever stopped to think that Tom Bucci has been benefiting financially from the administration’s actions? In the legal field, it is widely known that for some reason Bucci gets quick monetary settlements from the city. You think other attorneys have it easy in dealing with legal matters with the City of Bridgeport?

  • Bob Walsh

    From the article in the CT Post:
    DPH spokesman Bill Gerrish said the state agency informed the Finch administration last year that the Social Services Department was failing to “meet the needs of the clients” served by the WIC program, officially called the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children.
    Gerrish said because of the city’s failure to meet its contractual obligations, the state decided not to renew its contract to run the program. Instead, he said, the state plans to issue a “request for proposals” for outside agencies to bid on running the city’s WIC program.

    So the mayor is now saying that it is because of the WIC program that Dr. Evans was let go but the state is saying that they put the city on notice last year. So where is the sense of urgency?
    This administration simply is looking to privatize any and all jobs that relate to providing services to the underserved.
    They could care less about the quality of care or the cost of delivery of care. This is what happens when you have an administration run by a bunch of suburbanites.
    Go down the list. Bill Finch raised in Trumbull and represented Trumbull and Monroe in the Senate. Andrew Nunn former first selectman from Monroe, Mike Feeney former city official in Stratford, Adam Wood upstate CT somewhere out in the woods.
    There number-one goal is to reduce city government at the citizens’ expense.
    Dr. Evans’ term expired in 2008 and now in 2010 Finch has determined that she is not doing her job.
    Who is really not doing their job here, Bill?

  • Bob Walsh

    It is by state law that when a municipality hires a Health Director that they have to give them a contract. The requirement is a 4- or 5-year contract. Can’t remember for sure.
    The whole purpose of this is to take the politics out of providing public health services. It appears that the policy makers in Hartford assumed that once the initial contract was up a new one would be signed or a new health director would be hired.
    Instead in Bridgeport they leave them hanging in the wind. This politicizes the job more than anything else.
    The city did the same with another former African American female Health Director, Roz Hamilton. This was under Joe Ganim, Bill Finch’s idol.
    Let’s stop playing games with public health and get back to the game of delivering quality services.
    Where is Dennis Murphy and Total Quality Management?
    Where is Jodi Paul and CitiStat?

  • city hall smoker

    Bob Walsh for Mayor.

  • Bob Walsh

    From the Bridgeport Code of Ordinances:
    Chapter 2.86 SOCIAL SERVICES COMMISSION
    2.86.010 Created.
    A. There shall be a social services commission which shall consist of seven members appointed by the mayor, as provided in subsection C of this section. The commission shall:
    1. Advise and consult with the director of health and social services pertaining to the duties and the conduct of the department and agencies;
    2. Advise the director in regard to policies, rules and regulations;
    3. Serve as the city’s board of health.
    B. Whenever the term “board of health” appears in this code it shall be deemed to refer to or mean the social services commission.
    C. In January 1993, the mayor shall appoint three persons to serve as members of such commission for a term to expire on the last day of December 1994 and four persons to serve for a term to expire on the last day of December 1993. Thereafter, in December of each year members shall be appointed to serve for a term of two years from the first day of January next succeeding their appointment. (Ord. 12/21/92 § 61)

    This is another board that can served a very useful purpose but during the days of Joe Ganim the city systematically sought to stifle public comment and input and thereby the potential for controversy by failing to appointment members to these boards and commissions and de facto eliminated these boards without going through the very public process of eliminating them by ordinances. (Maybe Lennie could provide more insight into this process.)
    Recently the city council passed a resolution urging the mayor to appoint and thereby re-establish the Commission for Persons With Disabilities. Maybe it is time to try to do the same with this board.
    Shine a light on the operations of the city of Bridgeport and bring about the transparency that candidate Finch promised.

  • Bob Walsh

    City Hall Smoker may be right about Bucci. I am not sure how labor law practices would view a state requirement for a contract versus a municipality’s decision to do nothing.
    It may be worth Dr. Evans at least giving Bucci a call.

    • Joel Gonzalez

      Troll, open your eyes! Can you see now that Tom Bucci is part of the whole master plan? Everybody gets a piece of the pie.

      • Joel Gonzalez

        BTW Troll, it’s all legal; Pay to work (wink).

        • Bob Walsh

          I am betting that Bucci makes more money off of the city than Finch does. It’s only fair. He is now a suburbanite.
          Or should that be suburban white?

      • city hall smoker

        I disagree, Joel. Bucci is a good lawyer and knows an opportunity when he sees it. The city administrators are acting like idiots, Mark Anastasi included. Bucci can run circles around them and they know it. They settle with Bucci because they know they are wrong and have no case. So Bucci makes some quick money for himself and his clients. Plain and simple.

  • Joel Gonzalez

    Christoper Shays on the verge of moving to Connecticut.
    Will he run for CT Gov? I’d say “yes” and in about 10 days, he will announce.

  • The Fixer

    Finch and his suburban white henchmen are using the failure of the WIC program to terminate Dr. Evans. The truth is that Iris and Veronica (as Bruce said above) have been reporting directly to CAO Andy Nunn for over a year. The entire time that WIC was on probation it was under the supervision of these three people and not Evans. Andy knew the shaky status of the program yet he did nothing to intervene. If anyone is to be terminated over this it should be Iris, Veronica and Andy.

    Bob Walsh is correct in saying that the suburban whites running the city have no compassion for the real people who live there. Let’s remember that Finch destroyed the school-based health centers and then got rid of a 100-year-old dental hygiene program. He even made the public statement “we should not be in the business of providing dental care to poor kids.” Oh no? If not the city then who? No one right now. He knew about the problems in WIC for a year but did nothing. Now he can use it as an excuse to outsource another program and get rid of Dr. Evans at the same time.

    You can forget about Total Quality Management and CitiStat. Those initiatives do not work under a vindictive dictatorship. They are a waste of money and another way to create jobs for political cronies. Finch does not care about the unions or the employees. He will eliminate and privatize until there is nothing left but a skeleton crew and his cronies. Wait and see.

  • town committee

    Fixer: I have been saying what you wrote about for over a year. The union leadership of most unions are in the pockets of the mayor and his out-of-town henchmen. Pretty soon the only union members left working for the city will be these same sell-out union leaders we have now.
    None of the top administrators live in the city some may have city addresses but they really don’t live here. What do they give a damn about their decisions that affect the weakest residents in Bridgeport which are the poor and the elderly?
    You can bet your ass when the WIC program or what ever it is is put out to “BID” a crony’s company will get the bid just like what was done with the school health program.
    Andy Nunn is an empty suit period. A vicious out-of-towner period.
    To all of these nasty people I say your day is coming those of us that live here and have lived here for years have endured a lot living here. We will survive but your nasty asses will be out of here in 2 years or less.
    To all the loyal Bridgeport workers I say hang in there. We the people know you are laboring under tremendous strain. 1. Bosses that don’t give a shit. 2. Unions that don’t give a shit. 3. Rats looking to kiss political butt. 4. A nasty administration looking to get rid of anyone who says NO. We the taxpayers support you and to all those workers I say Thank You.

  • Mojo

    *** Hope this Dr. Evans debacle does not turn into a black & white issue! It’s obvious that it’s a who’s the boss and “$” issue in which the Finch Admin. finds out about possible problems with many of the social service programs, & does “nothing” in hopes of the programs failing & state/federal grants monies, etc. running out & not being renewed. Afterward the programs are sometimes either completely dissolved or taken over by private enterprise. The less social programs, etc. under city government watch, the less problems in general to deal with. Sometimes certain things are disregarded on political purpose so that later it can seem as though the Mayor is coming to the people’s rescue against the state or feds, just like the juvie jail for girls issue in which the Mayor claimed that if the matters have to be settled in court so be it, after it was known that his Admin. had a year’s prior knowledge. It’s a survival stepping-stone mentality to help those that can help you later politically & with “$” but also take out those that cannot help or that question your motives. These personal tactics seem to be a Finch & Co. way of operations & the problem is, he’s getting bolder & bolder as time goes by & much more comfortable as he watches the community just sitting by & really doing nothing but complaining privately. There is strength in numbers & a political speaking forum in place that can be used wisely providing there is research done beforehand, such as present laws, ordinances, sanctions, etc. and facts not rumors, gathered to present one’s case. Councilpersons like Walsh most of the time stand by themselves & can only accomplish a single cry of “WOLF”! Just imagine hundreds of “WOLF” calls coming from Bpt. taxpaying voters @ a City Council meeting! Remember, in politics (“time helps to heal all wounds”) so you forgive, but you should never “FORGET”! Maybe it’s time for many of the “OIB” complaining bloggers to step up the game & organize some media getting action during this year’s budget sessions, before, during & after. All within respectful good taste, facts & sticking to the issues agreed upon beforehand so everyone is on the same sheet of taxpayers’ music! *** Here’s one registered Dem. that’s hoping for C. Shays to come back to CT and run for governor against the present step-stoning wannabe candidates we have now! *** Enjoy the Big Dance tomorrow in New Orleans everyone! Since the Colts beat my rookie (Coach & Q.B.) New York Jets, it’s only natural that I root for the marching “SAINTS” for Super Bowl. *** Bucci senior is a good lawyer that’s very familiar with politics & city government do’s & don’ts, so why wouldn’t any ex-city employee by choice, who feels violated by admin. self-serving city government made-up policies, not want to hire him as legal council? ***

  • harley76

    It’s not a black/white issue, it’s an issue of another qualified employee, who happens to be a female and black, let go by a spiteful revengeful mayor. You know how it is Mojo, the blacks keep track of their number of positions and so do the hispanics. There was no reason to fire Dr. Evans and bring in a white man from New Haven. We may not know now but you can bet that Mr. Quinn is politically connected somehow. Perhaps he is friendly with a state senator who owes Finch a favor from his Hartford days. There is an angle here somewhere, we just don’t know what it is yet.

    TC, don’t blame the unions for selling out their members. Some are just too naive to see that they’re being used. Take AFSCME, a union that backed Finch 100%. Their members took no raises and furlough days that really hurt, especially the ones in BOE who make very little to begin with. Then no one else in the BOE gives anything back even though they make 4x or 5x the salaries of the AFSCME members. Then Finch turns around and wastes money on consultants and CitiStat and Mark Anastasi’s son, etc. Now you would think that AFSCME leaders would feel like fools? But no, they continue to kiss Finch’s ass. They are just too dumb to see that they are being used.

  • town committee

    Harley: You are right in what you say but now it’s time for the union membership to get together and vote these sell-out union leaders out of office.
    Have you noticed how quiet all the unions are about what happened in civil service? They have to realize what is taking place there.
    The city is looking to get most of the lower-tier employees out of civil service. I mean no insult when I say lower-tier employees. They are looking to take the custodians and clerks and many other non-classified jobs out of civil service and do away with all those tests. By doing this it opens up the political patronage further than it already is. They are looking to go to the 1 in 3 rule for tested positions also, a way to get politically connected people into certain jobs. The 1 in 3 rule will also allow them to stop a non-favored employee from getting a promotion even if that person comes out #1 on the test.
    There is a whole lot of stuff taking place here and the unions are silent and I mean all the unions.

  • Mojo

    *** Up late watching the French Connection, then the Eukanuba Dog Show. *** Point on the city’s employee unions, whatever political juice they might have had years ago is gone when their must live in Bpt. contract clause was changed. I don’t know the actual % but many city employees live outside the city limits, so their votes along with family members’ political support is gone. Now the only reason for being a union steward is probably for special bumping incentives during layoffs and other minor union perks. Regardless of what union workers belong to, whether city, state or fed. they’re only as strong as their actual “active” go to meetings membership. When no one goes to meetings other than once a year & does not keep tabs & pressure on their elected union leadership board except for when something happens, you’re not going to have much of a union! Basically taxes, city services or city ordinances, etc. don’t really affect city employees that live outside city limits. Other than maybe the city government not having enough money for their contract raises because of cost for city services, B.O.E., etc. during budget time, why should they care? But as we’re seeing now due to the effects of the economy, what goes around comes around in one form or another and ends up affecting everyone! Bpt. taxpayers, and city workers’ morale is @ an all-time low, continued forced retirements as well as general cuts & layoffs come and go. Those that are non-compliant with the city admin. are fired for half-cocked reasons while new political jobs are filled or made for family, friends or political officials with no experience during a bogus city jobs freeze! Then you pick up and read the Park City “Update” info. paper and all the stories printed claim how great the Mayor’s doing and all the new development that’s coming to Bpt. along with the think green campaign that’s making our city & planet a nicer place! And let’s not forget the B/S about all the poor urban children that the Mayor’s Admin. is helping in Bpt. Yet who’s to blame in the end as more & more “For Sale” signs & foreclosures plague our city, is it all those that choose to do nothing, or vote for the same political party, how about those that don’t vote, don’t get involved in their communities? Wish I had the answers but seems like all I’m left with is more questions & complaints as time goes on. *** Night-Night ***

  • Local Eyes

    New Concept: Inbound Marketing, which flips the entire sales process upside down. It’s nirvana for the get-it-done-now crowd.

    www .erbeckercompany.com/pages/services.html

  • Local Eyes

    Solo observation:

    Those who post on OIB tend to be politically impotent.

    Those who read OIB tend to be politically important.

    However despite its value as a platform for reaching area voters, elected officials avoid OIB like the plague.

    I do not wonder why.

  • Local Eyes

    RE: America’s unofficial holiday, The Super Bowl

    This ain’t a Rumor, it’s a Fact:

    It’s never too early to get your GAME FACE ON.

    Saints: 27; Colts: 21

  • Local Eyes

    WHAT’S it like to be politically impotent?

    YOU could ask me.

    I’m an expert on that subject …

    But c’mon, here’s why I’m blogging:

    I’m a-gonna attack that guacamole dip with the same enthusiasm a starving dog gives to a bowl of Alpo.

    Look out!

  • harley76

    I read all these posts about Dr. Evans and Iris and I talk to some folks in the community and now I’m starting to think there’s a conspiracy theory here. Put it all together and see if you agree. A year ago WIC gets put on probation by the state at the same time that Iris breaks away from Evans and starts reporting directly to Andy Nunn.

    A year goes by and the situation in WIC does not improve. Iris and Veronica (the other supervisor) are very secretive so their staff doesn’t understand what’s happening. They start writing people up and even suspend the WIC supervisor. WIC employees go to Evans for help but she can do nothing as the program is no longer under her jurisdiction. Evans is very popular with her employees and in the community and folks say she would have done everything possible to save this program and the jobs given the chance. WIC serves mostly blacks and hispanics and Evans is especially caring to this group of young mothers.

    Then with no notice, WIC is taken away by the state, Evans is terminated and all the employees in WIC are given notice of their layoff. How many people work there? 20? 30? Fits in with Finch’s plan to downsize and he gets rid of Evans at the same time. Win-Win situation. Iris is quoted in the Post that they cannot meet the need yet Joel, who works there, says there is plenty of staff and people are getting seen. Then why is Iris selling out her program and admitting defeat? Was this because she was part of the plan?

    Go Saints. Who Dat!

    • Local Eyes

      What serious sports fans know:

      Who dat is cajun slang for who’s that?

      Who dat? is a chant of team support by sports fans, used especially by fans of the New Orleans Saints, an NFL football team. The entire chant is: “Who dat? Who dat? Who dat say dey gonna beat dem Saints? Who dat? Who dat?”

  • Local Eyes

    The WIC and Dr. Evans disappeared faster than a pizza on Super Bowl Sunday!

  • Nancy Hadley

    Grace and respect have disappeared from City Hall. Dr. Evans, an accomplished Ob-Gyn from Griffin Hospital left the comforts of that health care environment to work tirelessly for the residents of Bridgeport for six years. She did so many wonderful and important things for those who didn’t have a voice. The effort to heighten the issues facing those with diabetes, pre-natal care concerns, the crisis in community health, and the search for a new Health Department building come to mind first. The list goes on and on. No matter what the politics, Dr. Evans deserved to leave with grace and respect. Her departure should have been announced. She should have had a respectable transition period in order that her good works would be carried on in a professional manner. Her staff should have had time to say goodbye. The City should have had time to say thank you. I for one thank Dr. Evans for the time, dedication, professionalism and every lasting smile despite many issues of despair and frustration. The City is better for her being here. She deserved a better send-off as a woman, as an African American and as a wonderful person. I wish her only the best. I will miss her.

    • Local Eyes

      We live in a graceless age where time, decisions, responses and impact have been shortened, curtailed and sometimes eliminated by 45 years of deficit spending & inflation which explains what?

      Answer: absolutely everything.

  • city hall smoker

    Nancy, did you leave with grace and respect? Did you have a respectable transition period? Did your staff have time to say goodbye? Or were you thrown to the curb? I thought so. Why expect things to change?

  • Mojo

    *** Who’s to blame??? Always remember there are 2 sides to a story & somewhere in the middle you may find the truth. *** Truth, as far as finding budget monies from grants for the city’s Social Services, just about every year without asking the city for much; Iris Molina & Co. *** So before the actual facts are out & rumors put Iris & co. against Dr. Evans, remember who has more to gain from this loss in the end? ***

  • MCAT

    OK. All suburban dwellers are not incompetent and do not hate Bridgeport. Rina came from Shelton and I came from Monroe. Nancy when she first worked for Bridgeport did not live their either. It is not a matter of where you live but who you are; what is your work ethic, your beliefs, your experience? I can list a number of people from Monroe who still work their butts off for Bridgeport, and they pay a price for it at home by being attacked and lied about. So don’t use suburbanite as a slur, it is inconsistent with the truth. Bridgeport is one of the biggest employers in area, probably around 2,000. So it is illogical to think every position could be filled by a current Bridgeport person. (Not everyone wants to work for a municipality or has the qualifications to do so.)

    BTW–Oh when the SAINTS GO MARCHIN’ IN, REGGI BUSH IS MAKING A TOUCHDOWN WHEN THE SAINTS GO MARCHIN’ IN!

  • enlightened

    I guess working for the city is bad for your health.

    Meanwhile, the clock in the upper right keeps on ticking … or is that tocking … clicking … oh, the numbers keep on getting littler.

  • town committee

    MCAT: I did not say all suburbanites. Let’s not get so defensive. I believe that if I am paying someone $90K or higher that person should reside in or move into the city period. Nancy Hadley moved here and gives a damn about the development here. Our present Economic development chief lives in New York. You tell me.
    When the powers that be make decisions about things like civil service and the like it affects the people that live here more than the ones that live out of town.
    You don’t think out of the 147,000 people living here that we don’t have 2000 people qualified to do these city jobs? Now that is snobbery.
    These suburbanite spendthrifts that manage most of the city departments are not affected in the end because they don’t have to come up with the money to pay the long list of secret raises handed out by this administration. We do!!!!!!!!!

  • enlightened

    Way back in the day, a young assistant city attorney had to defend Bridgeport Civil Service against a) changes in state law, b) changes in federal law, and c) common sense.

    This was not easy. The lawyer lost sometimes. But he sure learned labor law.

  • MCAT

    (For the sake of clarity, I am saying this in a light-hearted fashion, blog posts and IMs are so misunderstood sometimes.) I ALSO said “wanted to work for the city.” What if no one from the city applies? I guess I squeaked in by a couple of grand for the last job, but I was an assistant City Attorney too for awhile (that was sarcasm). You said you’d hire Rina and me back if you were Mayor, AND YOU KNOW I am not a snob! (That was a bit chiding.) I bet you can’t find one time when I called you anything, ever (that was immature and pouty). I am a regional person, regionalism I believe is the only thing that is going to save our state (that is a politician).

  • RedWhiteandBlue

    It is too bad the administration can’t just be straight with people … they always seem to turn decisions into a cloak and dagger game. If the Mayor wants to redirect city government as a part of his plan for the city’s future, just say so. People may not like it but at least they would respect his honesty. The Mayor and his key staff have made little things big issues and big issues disasters. A Mayor needs a good diverse team willing to tell him what he needs to hear. People who can navigate change through and not create a war a minute. I don’t see Finch getting reelected at this point. His staff lacks diversity to say the least–every kind of diversity. I have nothing against the Irish for sure, however when one group makes up almost the entire management team and inner circle in this day and age something is fundamentally wrong. As for in-towners and out-of-towners, I see it as there are good talented staff and staff that are not so good and lack talent. I have met all types in Bridgeport. I think it is helpful if key people have Bridgeport roots even if they are not currently residing in the city but not mandatory.
    I don’t know the situation with Dr. Evans but whatever the details it should have been handled differently, I agree with Nancy Hadley.
    I was at an event recently with a good number of Bridgeport residents of all backgrounds. Consistently the people in the room expressed major disappointment in the administration. Many of the people present voted for Mayor Finch and regret it. I just don’t see him getting reelected at this point. I think his fate is similar to Jim Miron’s.

  • town committee

    MCAT are you referring to my earlier posts? I never said you were a snob. I said you were a strong women and I would hire you if I were mayor. I am not a proponent of regionalism but I don’t believe I called you any names. I checked my post and at no time did I call you a name or belittle you. I like you even if we don’t always agree.

  • harley76

    I know of two churches who discussed this today. Prayer tabernacle where the good doctor is a prominent member and Mount Aery led by the esteemed pastor Bennett. I only know of these two but I’m certain it was the topic of discussion all throughout the black church community. What I heard involved the community putting up a candidate to challenge Finch and then immediately removing all of his appointees including Mr. Osborne. Mr. Osborne is the labor relations director who was in the termination meeting and then had the nerve to show up in her office when she was meeting with her staff to ask for her laptop even though she was given until Wed to clean out her office. Osborne is a brother but he sold his soul to this mayor for a job. I hope his new clothes and house renovations are worth his dignity because he has none left.

  • countdown

    The Labor Relations Director has no idea what grace and respect mean. None at all.

    • harley76

      The labor relations director has no qualifications to be the labor relations director. He came from the Orcutt boys club, don’t even think he has a college degree. He forgot where he came from but he will be reminded very soon.

  • Ron Mackey

    “harley76,” as a member of Mt. Aery who was at the 7:45am service this morning Rev. Bennett DID NOT discuss anything concerning Dr. Evans. I don’t know what was said at the 11am service but I do know Dr. Evans was being discussed among churchgoers after church.

  • just me

    I really think everyone who posts on here needs to get their facts straight before posting. It was mentioned by someone that their sister went to the Holiday party hosted by Dr. Evans, and stated the employees paid cash for the DJ … ooops wrong answer. The employees paid nothing unless they brought a guest. The guest cost $26.00 and the seminar portion lasted exactly 8 minutes. Then dinner was served and the DJ started. It was over at 11:00p.m. and was held at the Holiday Inn. I REPEAT … THE EMPLOYEES PAID NOTHING TO ATTEND!!! So if you don’t know what you’re talking about say nothing. You make yourself look like an idiot.

    • BRIDGEPORTBABY

      That’s why it’s important to not rely on blogs for facts, go to the source! While Dr. Evans did not have a contract, she served Bridgeport well. If you read the article, no one actually accused her. However, that information was leaked purposely and incompletely to disparage her reputation. It is not about the money spent on the Holiday Seminar or Dr. Evan’s abilities. It’s about having a person of integrity working for an administration that has no integrity. The more I learn about the administration the uglier it gets. Council people and political cronies getting jobs while essential positions are being cut. How many people that serve on common council have had an increase in pay, been hired in jobs that don’t have job descriptions and are drawing City pensions and on the payroll? Talk about not qualified … what about Councilman Paoleta … got a job and makes more money than his boss and represents who? FOI. Is Blunt in line for Dr. Evans’ job?
      Did Councilman Bonney just get a job? Who is next to get to put their hand in the cookie jar–twice?

  • Nancy Hadley

    The details of what happened to me two years ago this weekend are unimportant. Just know that he acted totally without grace in a similar disrespectful way with me. I will never forgive him.

    Now I need to watch the Who at halftime. Go Saints!

  • Mojo

    *** Great game & win for the “SAINTS”! Also, the halftime commercials weren’t as funny as last year’s. *** Everyone has different opinions about Mr. Osborne who happens to be a high school grad. & drafted Vietnam Vet. When I received my walking papers from Finch, Mr. Osborne was more than a gentleman in the way he handled it & treated me with respect. I don’t know what his follow-up education was after his time in military service but I do know that just because you get a certificate from a college does not always mean you can do the job! In fact, depending on the “actual” job specs I’d rather take a good commonsense streetwise person without the picture-framed paper to learn by O.J.T. over a bookworm! *** However I do understand the overall feeling by many in general that when it comes to good city government or city civil-service jobs in Bpt. “it’s not what you know” but “who you know” that’s of more importance! *** RESPECT MAN ***

  • babyseal

    Look at SEIU District 1199 they supported Caruso and the school nurses were the first to go. Finch’s Administration is filled with vengeful people who care about themselves more than the City. Oddly in their effort to purge they have ostracized themselves from everyone. If the opposition can unite Finch will be a bad memory.

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