Riccio To Leave Port Authority, Plus: Club SIXX, Clean It Up!

Noon update: The Bridgeport Port Authority and its Executive Director Joe Riccio have agreed to part ways effective Tuesday.

OIB friend Denis O’Malley, chairman of the port authority board, disclosed today that Riccio has agreed to a six-month severance of approximately $58,000. Under the terms of Riccio’s employment contract he was scheduled to be paid until October 2010. He earned roughly $119k yearly. O’Malley statement:

Due to a dispute over the proposed legislation affecting the Bridgeport Port Authority and local control, the Bridgeport Port Authority and its Executive Director Joseph Riccio have mutually agreed to part company as of June 30, 2009.

Riccio had come under fire after port authority lobbyist Jay Malcynsky spliced language onto a bill in the last days of the regular legislative session that gave the state Department of Transportation final say over the dissolution of the port authority.

This threw many City Council members into a fit over loss of home rule and, as a result, the city’s legislative body voted to disband the port authority before a gubernatorial signature could sign the state measure into law. The local legislation, however, has not been signed by Mayor Bill Finch who has reservations about dissolving the quasi city agency. Riccio’s departure could sway the mayor to veto the city ordinance and influence appointment of a new executive director, especially if legislators in Hartford move forward with reversing the state legislation.

The five-member port authority board has moved in earnest to keep the agency afloat. And this latest move leading to Riccio’s departure is an effort to persuade city officials to repair rather than dissolve the port authority. City Economic Development director Don Eversley is also a member of the board.

Port authority supporters, including the city’s former Director of Economic Development Nancy Hadley, say the port authority access to funding sources is key to furthering waterfront improvements.

Riccio was represented in negotiations by former Mayor Tom Bucci, an experienced labor attorney. Had Riccio been terminated for cause, for not seeking board approval regarding the state legislation, a nasty legal battle could have erupted with the port authority paying out much more than $58k.

The settlement with Riccio also saves tons in legal costs. Under the terms of the general agreement signed by Riccio he’ll be out as executive director on Tuesday and he’ll receive his negotiated severance by the end of the week.

Clean It Up!

Prodded by Bob from BePo, we’re launching Clean It Up!, a feature from our days at the Bridgeport Light, a community weekly paper that took on illegal dumpers, filthy establishments and yes even a few that featured the word reputed in front of their name.

Residents on the East Side have been complaining about Club SIXX at 2536 East Main Street, a dance bar with ear-splitting music and patrons that spill out into the street.

It’s located in the former Fitzwilly’s. For you nostalgia buffs, the old Fairway. The club also has some issues pending before the state Liquor Control Division, according to website minutes of the state Department of Consumer Protection.

Andy Fardy, a candidate for City Council in the 138thCity Council District, (along with other residents) is trying to get the restaurant to clean up its act. As Fardy points out:

“This restaurant has applied for live entertainment and such through the Zoning Board of Appeals. Residents responded and obtained petition signatures only to have the meeting postponed because the ZBA application was unclear. This is the old postpone the meeting enough times and the opposition will stop showing up. The petitioner is represented by (land use attorney) Ray Rizio.

“My 77 year old resident has called the health department several times complaining about piles of trash and debris alongside the building. He gave his name, address and telephone number and was told by the health department that they did not have the manpower to address this issue.

“Ann  Barney [Fardy’s council running mate] and I got involved and I contacted Blight Officer Dennis Scinto who responded immediately. Mr. Scinto took photos and made a few telephone calls and the next day the dumpster was not only emptied it was removed from the premises. The remaining trash was also removed.”

The club operator apparently has a short memory and on Sunday Fardy spotted more stray trash outside the premises. Fardy snapped these images and shared them with OIB. So here’s what we say to Club SIXX …

Clean It Up!!!



News release from The Gallery at Black Rock

Peter Konsterlie: Directional Prada

Opening July 17, 2009 – August 28, 2009
The Gallery at Black Rock

The Gallery at black Rock is pleased to present Directional Prada, Peter Konsterlie’s one-man show opening July 24,2009. Konsterlie’s work in directional Prada explores the themes of branding and its relevance to contemporary artists and how they relate to the need for artists to have a “brand” to continue doing what they love. He seeks to delve into what a “Konsterlie painting” is about.

Konsterlie’s work blends figurative representational line drawing, with abstracted patterns and visual signposts. The power of pattern and repeated design are hallmarks of the Konsterlie painting. He believes strongly in the visual power of repeated drips pattern. Gestural strokes of paint and repeated create pattern and texture Directional symbols draw the eye to points of imagination, significant and not.

In several paintings Peter uses anatomical figures and images from popular culture to create a dialogue on the subject of mortality and the medical experience.

Bring your eyeballs.

The show will have an opening reception on July 24th from 6 pm until 9 pm
The Show runs through August 21st 2009.



  1. *** It’s a shame with people looking for work in Bpt. & past complaints about the extremely loud music sometimes & drunks pissing on sides of cars that this club can’t get it together! Keeping a small cleanup crew that can clean up in the a.m after a night of partying would not cost so much & it would go a long way with the nearby neighbors. *** In ending, they have some good-looking babes there on Friday nights & attract many ‘burb customers spending money and getting drunk. They definitely make the “$” to be able to pay to keep things clean & in order. Too bad, The hottie girls depending on the nights are only trying to pay their way through medical or law schools! (wink!) *** Forget about it! ***

  2. This is an issue that Ann and I will be staying on. Quality of life issues are what we are basing our campaign on. People have a right to peace and quiet. They have a right to go to bed and not be awakened by loud voices, screaming and the like at 2 AM. People have a right to walk out their front door in the morning and not look at used condoms, broken bottles and other debris.
    Quality of Life is everyone’s right. Everyone has a right to expect this and it’s the city’s obligation to ensure that it happens.
    Dennis Scinto did an excellent job and in actuality was the only city employee that showed that he cared. The police have showed up at my 77-year-old’s residence and told him the music from the club was kind of loud and that they were glad they did not live there.
    When a person files a complaint such as my 77-year-old resident he should not be getting a visit from an agency that previously told him they did not have the manpower to handle his complaint. Why did they have the manpower to answer a complaint from an anonymous person against the 77 year old? Who really filed this complaint?
    The type of business operated at this site belongs in an industrial zone as stated in zoning regulations it does not belong in an office residential neighborhood.
    People it’s time to take back our neighborhoods and our quality of life. Politicians in city hall reading this please take note. We are not going to give up on these issues and we demand you ensure our quality of life is protected.

    1. *** Just what type of zoning area is it? It’s not office-type zoning when you have Casco Co. 3 blocks down the street, repair shops, etc. It’s probably Res./Lt.industry-type zoning ’cause there are many types of businesses in that area! *** Good Luck ’cause you’re going to need it! You’ll find out real quick that things in Bpt. are not always what they should be especially when comparing to other places in CT or another state. Many of the zoning nightmares Bpt. residents suffer now are from poor city & state regulations & the city’s P&Z boards, “it’s not in my neighborhood” way of thinking & decision making in the past, and present! *** Also, regardless of what ordinance changes or zoning laws are made or changed, the city is all bark & no teeth so to speak when it comes to enforcing the rules! *** “Don’t blame it on the Sunshine & don’t blame it on the Moonlight, blame it on the Boogie”! ***

  3. I’m glad to see some reaction as Bridgeport is reaching its Tipping Point.

    Boston has disbanded its Mounted Horse Unit. It was the oldest continuous running unit in the country. Meanwhile between City Hall and Bridgeport P. D., the taxpayers are getting mounted for the cost of this Whores-Show.

    Lennie’s and Bridgeport’s Home Girl Sayesha Mercado is set to star in the Broadway return of “DreamGirls”.

  4. Actually, Mistress Bader was a dissenter. So I’ll go along with Scalia. I hear he is a cross-dresser.

    Perhaps TC or Ron Mackey would like to offer up their opinions on how or if this will effect the Bridgeport test?

    1. *** Yahooy’s dream girl is Ru Paul! *** And Casco is not a mile away from sixx-club, it’s just off York st. which is across from the Marrero’s Liquor Store & other types of business in that area. ***

  5. New show coming to the Downtown Cabaret called:
    Five Girls Named Mo’!

    Variety gives it 5*****!!! Bridgeport Herald’s Harry Neigher says: “Give me Mo’, Mo’ Mo’ Mo’ and Mo’!!!”

    Time to say goodbye to “My Little Margie”, Gail Storm.

  6. Mojo: The place in question is in an OR zone aka office retail. This allows small retail and business uses. The repair facility is allowed in that area. The Casco building that you refer to is in a different zone and is about 1 mile plus from the site in question.
    New Adult entertainment belongs in an industrial zone. I agree with what you say for the most part but Ann & I are persistent and won’t go away on this issue along with others.

  7. Mojo: So technically it is about a mile from Sixxs and is on or near the corner of York and Horace. In either case it is zoned differently than where Sixxs is located.

  8. Chris Shays is out, and “Bridgeport Now” is checking in to see what new Congresman Jim Himes is doing for Connecticut? He will be a guest on tomorrow’s program from 8 to 8:30pm on Ch 77 and Soundviewtv.org.

    Do you have health insurance? Ever wonder about oversight with that bailout? What about the proposal to expand Federal Reserve powers … hey, weren’t they at the controls during the systemic financial collapse?

    Ask your Congressman Jim Himes on “Bridgeport Now” what he is doing about the healthcare issue and about jobs and the economy.

    Congressman Himes sits on the Financial Svces Committee, including the important Capital Markets Subcommittee that includes oversight of the Federal Reserve. There is gathernng pressure by both the left and right wing to request an investigation of the FED and the financial collapse. It’s called “Audit the Federal Reserve: HR 1207” and I understand that this is now in the House Committee on Financial Services. Again, Congressman Jim Himes sits on this committee and should speak about this tomorrow, among other topics.

    You can make a difference. Tune in, get informed and participate.

    Also on the program is the president of the League of Women Voters of Connecticut

    Will Mayor Bill Finch come on the program next?

  9. Finch will veto the Council vote, with assurances that the Home Rule issue will be resolved by the Legislature. I know that Bill Finch is into recycling, but I don’t know if Ms. Hadley is the answer. Furthermore, does the BPA even need an executive director? Can’t its form and function come under Eversley’s department? The BPA’s revenues are only about $2 million a year. I’m still waiting for those 50-story apartment buildings to be built.

    Also, is the City going to allow the Ferry Co. to move across the harbor, in the spirit of a free market system, driven by profits, and not by professional bureaucrats?

    Has anyone in this administration, and others, run, grown, or had to make a payroll for a business? The teat (city) has milked itself dry.

  10. Let’s start with all current members of the Port Authority tendering their resignations effective immediately, too.
    Whats good for the goose …

  11. Then let’s immediately remove the ex officio members from the board (the Harbor Master and Economic Development Director) too. If they are supposed to be looking out for the best interests of the city they seemed to have failed too.

  12. Then let’s expand the size of the board to a more unmanageable number of at least 7. Bigger is better when it comes to transparency. And let’s require a predetermined number of seats to be set aside for residents in areas most impacted by the PA.

    1. How about increasing the number of council seats; let’s allow for minority representation the way it’s done for the Board of Education. Bigger is better! Did I hear a ‘second’ from Bob Walsh?

  13. Bob Walsh owns the voice of logic and wisdom.

    And in a related move, I hereby nominate myself for Economic Development Director for The City of Bridgeport. I won’t develop new companies, I’ll develop people and import money into Bridgeport while doing it. Here’s the best part: we’ll be spending money on office space, BAYM.org computers and something for lunch!

  14. Bob,
    We have known each other for a fair amount of time and while we disagree on certain issues, I did not believe you thought of me as a hack. From comments and suggestions like the above, seems I’m mistaken.

    I was also as surprised at this legislative nightmare and have taken action pretty quickly regarding the executive director. While a troubling, emotional job, I think we did well.

    I am willing to resign as you suggest … Assuming that you specifically resign if the negative ramifications to the City by dissolving the BPA occur as I believe would happen very quickly.

  15. So Denis, let’s take personalities out of this for a second. I believe you and I must have very serious differences of opinion as to how good of a job the PA is doing.
    I believe that the Port Authority board needs a complete restructuring; some of which I mentioned above. Other changes need to be made in the powers granted to the authority and it needs further financial oversight.
    None of this has anything to do with what you interpreted me to be saying and that is that you are some kind of a hack.
    Reform does not begin and end with the termination of the Executive Director. And as is the case in many instances like this, it would always be the mayor’s prerogative to reappoint the same members and if confirmed by the council then they can continue to serve.
    But unless we do this and have a complete public airing of what is wrong with the PA, nothing is going to get fixed in the long run.

  16. Bob: I disagree with your proposal to add members of the community affected by the PA. The entire city is affected by what the PA does and does not do.
    Let’s put people on the board that are more than political yes-men (women). We have seen that in the recent appointees to the zoning board.
    Let’s put into effect rules that require the PA to meet on set days and times. In speaking to a former commissioner this was not the case in the recent past. Meetings were scheduled and then canceled at the last minute. Meetings were scheduled at times where it made public participation difficult. Meetings were scheduled where it made it difficult for some commissioner to attend. Let’s start there.


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