Salcedo’s Challenge, Plus: Don’t Port This Fee, And Finch Touts Development

I wonder if George Bush writes political love letters to Laura. (See Sly Salcedo’s letter to his wife in comments below.) I mean, do you think the librarian First Lady requires a United Nations translator? “Laura, honey, I think I don’t remember when I thought I did remember when I thought I was doing what I was supposed to do.”

What I like about Sly as a candidate is that he gives a lot of himself and his background. Whether you agree with his position or not that the government’s war on drugs that Sly fought is a bank-breaking scam, he doesn’t thread needles on positions as so many careful pols do.

Sly’s hustling donations in an effort to qualify for the state’s public financing system that would bolster his chances against the Democratic endorsed candidate for state representative Eze Santiago, that nice, young City Councilman who supported Bill Finch’s tax increase. Sly is finding out what it’s like to run against established politicians familiar with their territory. Mitch Robles, the district power behind Eze, has made a lot of friends through the years. Eze’s papa Americo represented the 130th Assembly District. Salcedo’s trying to connect, and shake up, voters that have been disconnected from the process a long time. The other candidate in the mix Chico Rivera–backed by Charlie Coviello who ran for mayor, dropped out and supported Finch with the expectation of a job, then got shafted–is a decent man who also knows the district well.

Chico’s friends have been working on Sly to get him out of the race. They want Sly’s votes (and his money) and he will get some. The Fightin’ Filipino’s not budging.

Sly is looking at pockets in the district that includes downtown, South End and portions of the East Side and West Side that Mitch and Americo do not control. The pockets are there because city turnouts suck. It’s a question of inspiring, urging, and ripping folks out of their homes on primary day Aug. 12.

Sly’s unorthodox message has gained him some decent free media play. The bigger question: will he qualify for the public financing to share his message of building relationships in Hartford to get things done. He’s working on raising $5,000 from 150 donors to receive a 25K check from the state. This is the week many candidates for state office will begin to hear whether they’ve qualified for the free loot.

A message without money does not work, particularly when working against the establishment.

Beaching The Vig

U.S. District Judge Christopher Droney took the wind out of the sails of the Bridgeport Port Authority that had charged a wharfage fee for ferry passengers. The Port Jefferson Steamboat Company took the court action, claiming the Port Authority fee violated a number of state and federal statutes and unjustly enriched itself. Droney sided with the ferry company. Hey, let’s have an OIB party on the ferry boat! See a brief excerpt from Droney’s decision, issued July 3, below.


I. Introduction

This action was brought by the Bridgeport and Port Jefferson Steamboat Company (the “Ferry Company”), a corporation that provides a public ferry service for passengers and vehicles between Bridgeport, Connecticut and Port Jefferson, New York, and by two of its frequent passengers (collectively the “plaintiffs”), against the Bridgeport Port Authority (the “Port Authority”). The Ferry Company leases dock facilities in Bridgeport for its ferry boat operation from the Port Authority. The subject of this action is the validity of a passenger wharfage fee (“Passenger Fee”) that the Port Authority imposes on all ferry passengers. The Passenger Fee -which has been in effect since 1993 – is collected by the Ferry Company and then turned over to the Port Authority. The plaintiffs challenge the legality of the Passenger Fee, claiming it violates the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution, the right to travel under the U.S. Constitution, the Tonnage Clause of the U.S. Constitution, the Rivers and Harbors Appropriation Act of 1884, and several Connecticut statutes. The plaintiffs also asserted a claim for unjust enrichment. The basis for these claims by the Ferry Company is its contention that the Port Authority uses too small a portion of the Passenger Fee proceeds to support activities related to ferry operations, and spends most of such proceeds for purposes unrelated to the ferry…

The Court hereby enjoins the Port Authority from the further use of the revenues from the Passenger Fee to fund its activities that are unrelated to and do not benefit the ferry passengers or approximate their use of the Port. The Port Authority shall not be allowed to collect a Passenger Fee in an amount that exceeds what is necessary for their expenses that benefit ferry passengers and fairly approximate their use of the Port. The Court has made factual findings as to which of the Port Authority’s activities were properly funded by the Passenger Fee revenues and which were not properly funded by the Passenger Fee based on the benefit of these activities to the ferry passengers. These findings should serve as guidance to the Port Authority in its future in its future calculations of an appropriate Passenger Fee.

H. Affirmative Defenses

The Court finds the Port Authority’s affirmative defenses to be without merit for the reasons detailed above.

III. Conclusion

The plaintiff Bridgeport & Port Jefferson Steamboat Company is awarded nominal damages in the amount of one dollar. The plaintiff D&D Flowers is awarded damages in the amount of $494.63.

The Port Authority is enjoined from the further use of the revenues from the Passenger Fee to fund its activities that are unrelated to and do not benefit the ferry passengers or approximate their use of the Port, and the Passenger Fee shall be reduced accordingly. The Port Authority shall not be allowed to collect a Passenger Fee in an amount that exceeds what is necessary for their expenses that benefit ferry passengers and fairly approximate their use of the Port.

The defendant’s Oral Motion for Judgment as a Matter of Law [Dkt. # 163] is DENIED as moot in light of this decision.

SO ORDERED this 3rd day of July 2008, at Hartford, Connecticut.

News release from Mayor Finch on development deal

Sale of Two City-Owned Properties to Lead to Almost $14 Million in Development

 BRIDGEPORT, CT (July 7, 2008) – Mayor Bill Finch is praising the sale of two city-owned properties that will lead to almost $14 million in investment consisting of new residential units as well as new office and retail space. Bridgeport had owned both buildings after taking them from their previous owners for non-payment of taxes.

“This is great day for Bridgeport . It is taking prime property and putting it back on the tax rolls, while giving our residents new places to live, shop and work,” said Mayor Finch. “It is projects like this that will help us make Bridgeport a cleaner, safer city while helping us to also stabilize city taxes.”

The properties, an 84,000 square foot building at 333 State St. , as well as the old American Fabrics property at 1069 and 1085 Connecticut Avenue , were both sold to developers last week.

It marks the first time since the early 1990s that 333 State St. is owned privately with no delinquent taxes. The new owner, First National Development, Inc., will have three years to complete the renovation of the building into 50 residential units and a minimum of 34,000 square feet of retail or office space. First National Development paid $550,000 for 333 State St. and plans to invest $12 million into the project.

First National Development is owned by Garfield and Rebecca Spencer, who developed the former Warnaco Building into the “Lofts on Lafayette.” The city originally took 333 State St. through foreclose from BENE Trader, LLC. in 2006. The previous owner owed the city more than $8 million in back taxes then.

The former American Fabrics property was sold to Westrock Development, LLC. Westrock is committed to investing $1.8 million in improvements to the building, which includes the clean-up of environmental problems and the demolition of obsolete buildings.

Westrock is currently negotiating next steps with the 35 business tenants currently located at the former American Fabrics property. The city took the property from the American Fabrics Co. in 2007 due to non-payment of more than $1 million in back taxes.

Westrock, based in Yonkers, NY, has substantial real estate holdings in New York , Connecticut and New Jersey.

“This is a continuation of our economic development efforts aimed at improving our city and stabilizing our tax rate,” said Mayor Finch. “We commit to continue to look for additional opportunities that will benefit all our taxpayers and residents.”



  1. The court finds that the Port Authority did not spend the money it was charging each passenger on improving Frry operations. Where did this extra money go and how was it spent. There is a proposal before the council to do away with the port authority maybe now is the time.

  2. There are many many many other revenue that is allocated for some things and get spent on others. This should all be investigated! Not only BOE!!

  3. Does it ever end.
    Slick Sal and taxes, I wonder if the cars were insured, by whom and where? I am sure there were irregulaties in stating the use and location of these cars. Does that insurer still have a Ct. licence? Will Bridgeport or will Fairfield enforce tax, zoning bills and profit on property stuff or let him off like Bpt. did?
    Also does he have any pride, or civic feelings?
    If the federal and state goverment grants concessions and grants to Bpt. and Fairfield for the taxpayers, like roads etc. and will Sal the slick still be taking a free ride for years on those roads on our and I mean Federal taxes, or will our state and Federal laws kick in and kick his ass.

  4. Yeah, why does HE get to break the law? And If he did have a legit auto business on North Ave, wouldn’t he have to pay personal property tax on that as well? I understand that there are many delinquents but DiNardo is way past that. He is actually doing illegal things to avoid taxes. He deserves to be in federal prison more than Ganim or Rowland or Newton. He has the highest unpaid tax bill in bpt! Over $16 million and counting! I guess it is who you know or blow as someone on another post stated.

  5. Yeah!

    Let’s have a cruise to nowhere on of course the Ferry named the Park City.

    Up On Bridgeport will be down on that.
    Hop aboard.

    Let’s have an OIB Costume Ball.

    Lennie can dress up as Captain Steuben from the Love Boat. Mo could play Julie, the Social Director from the Love Boat. Bruce Hubler can be “The Professor” from Gilligan’s Isle. City Kitty could be Ginger. Con Filardi could be Mr. Roberts. Black Rockin and BlackRockBob and Bob Fredericks could be from McHale’s Navy. Tom Kelly could be Chris Caruso’s Gopher. Sly could put on his officers suit and sweep countdown off her feet. The Grin Reaper could swim in from Fantasy Island yelling “de plane! de plane!” And John From Black Rock could be our mild mariner reporter dressed as Inspector Clousseau.
    Harry Neigher could report for Page Six of The Post.

    yahooy could just be his typical pain in the ass pissing all the guests off. The waitstaff could go to him and say: “Excuse me sir, but is everything not alright?”

    Joel falls overboard and yahooy offers him a lifesaver. Joel refuses saying it’s not his flavor. Wondering and his bride could be Mr. & Mrs. Thurston Howell III. MCAT could be Dawn in an evening gown.

    Auden and Keeley could make a cameo appearance and bury the hatchet in each other’s heads. It could be a High Seas Hiijinks Murder Mystery.

    How about a Casting Call?
    Make your recommendations and reservations. Now!

    And Yes It Is A Three-Hour Tour!

  6. As chairman of the Bridgeport Port Authority, I was disappointed in Judge Droney’s decision. We did salvage some small solace that the Court found a passenger tariff constitutional and awarded the Ferry Company $1.00 damages.

    To distill the 45 page decision, essentially the judge decided that too little of the passenger tariff was spent specific to the Bridgeport-Port Jefferson Ferry Company and their passengers’ benefit.

    The decision states that the “Court recognizes that the great majority of the courts that have previously considered similar usage fees have reached the opposite conclusion and given the government authorities wide discretion in spending user fees.”

    Unlike the sinister inferences above, the BPA has invested that tariff money in other areas of port development like Derecktor Shipyards, dredging the harbor channel to its authorized depth of 35 feet from the current 27, various Steel Point aspects, marina development elsewhere in the harbor, Remington development, possible high speed passenger ferry to Stamford/NYC, Feeder Barge program, etc.

    To refute the posts above, the Court found no malfeasance and trust me, after the unbelievable discovery process for this trial, if there were something amiss or crooked, it would have come up.

    As a previous poster states, there has been discussion initiated by Councilman Curwen to fold the BPA and put that tariff into the general fund … This court decision makes it emphatically clear #1. the tariff money must be used to the betterment of the ferry and passengers so the General fund is out. #2 There is going to be substantially less tariff revenue than what has been received to date.

    The BPA just received this decision July 3rd and has yet to meet to discuss and to decide if there is a case for appeal.

    The real problem with this decision is how to build up new port uses of Bridgeport’s harbors. Much of the tariff money goes to growing the harbor and in so doing, provide a better, more prosperous harbor for all. With the decision that the tariff can only go to the betterment of the Ferry Co. and passengers, coming up with the revenue to go forward on those projects will be difficult.

    As a concrete example, we have spent a significant sum in trying to get the channel dredged back to its 35 Feet depth. That would allow much bigger ships to come into to Cilco Terminal, generating more business. But the ferry only needs 15 feet so the judge ruled that a deeper channel provides no benefit to the ferry co. and passengers.

  7. Dennis I have a few questions; What wasn’t spent on Director Ship Yard? You state and I agree that the harbor needs to be dredged to 35 ft and that the Port Authority has spent considerable money on this project. Well why hasn’t it been dredged? From what I can see other than Director I have not seen any port improvements or additions. We lost Turbana Banana and there is very little shipping coming in. The Port Authority has done nothing with the Remington condos I think on that one you may be stretching the truth.

  8. Lennie–With advanced age and earlier Friday and Saturday nights, a 6:00 AM tee time is much easier.

    Wondering–As to dredging, what money wasn’t spent, why isn’t the harbor dredged, etc. Before anything gets done there are unbelievable hoops to jump through, all of which cost money. Also DEP and Army Corp of Engineers weigh in all along the way.

    Biggest problem other than getting in the line for federal funding which is a major challenge is where to put the dredge materials since it is considered “dirty” and the dumping grounds used years ago are no longer available.

    Boiling it down, there is nothing easy or quick with any commercial harbor development. I think many would be amazed at both the timetable and all that is entailed. If you would like to see a timeline, get me your contact info and I will have the info sent to you.

    As to Remington, I am not stretching the truth and frankly, I am not sure you are aware of where the BPA weighs in on this. The BPA is one of many agencies that the developer has to work with to get this off the ground. You will recall this week’s news coverage of their marina component being denied due to oyster beds by DEP. Besides the marina component, one of Remington’s options was to package a high speed ferry to Stamford and NYC with the development.

    Between a marina and a possible ferry, The BPA would play a big role in helping make that happen .. .Or at least moving the ball down the field.

    There is nothing related to port development that does no require money and major regulatory approvals. And nothing is easy or quick. The BPA is set up for that reason. The passenger tariff is has funded many of these initiatives.

    Now that Judge Droney has ruled, as of now, the revenue that funded these initiatives has dried up. That means to go further ahead with dredging or many of these projects, the BPA will have to come up with other revenue sources. Given the City and state finances, that is no small challenge

  9. Petitions push to oust Lieberman
    Article Last Updated: 07/03/2008 11:51:04 PM EDT

    WASHINGTON — The backers of an Internet drive to have Sen. Joe Lieberman stripped of his chairmanship plan to deliver more than 42,000 signatures to Senate Democrats when they return to work next week.
    Eddie Kurtz, a spokesman for the group, said that they plan to deliver the petitions principally to Michigan Sen. Debbie Stabenow, who chairs the Senate Democratic Steering Committee.

    The committee, which includes Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., is responsible for leadership assignments.

    Although Lieberman was not elected as a Democrat in 2006, he caucuses with them and serves as chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

    “We CANNOT tolerate a Democratic chairman of the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee who endorses and stumps for [presumptive GOP presidential candidate Sen. John] McCain. We call on the Senate Democratic Steering Committee to strip Joe Lieberman of his chairmanship and his leadership role,” the Web site declares.

    A short video on the Web site details the group’s grievances with Lieberman including his support for McCain, saber rattling for war with Iran and his support for President Bush and the Iraq war.

    Lieberman is in Colombia and unavailable for comment. He recently discounted the Web site, however, as “more of the same from partisan opponents,” but said that his opponents have “a constitutional right to voice their opinions.” And, he added at that time, “most people in this country are really tired of that kind of partisan politicking.”

    He also said he would continue to do what he believed is right for the country and “what makes sense for my state of Connecticut, and let the politics take care of itself.”

    Senate Democrats are unlikely to remove Lieberman from his leadership position this year because the Democrats hold a razor-thin majority.

    If the party gains additional seats after the November elections as most campaign analysts anticipate, Lieberman could be viewed as expendable.

    Lieberman, however, could play a pivotal role if Senate Democrats need his support to reach the 60-vote plateau that would allow them to push their agenda without fear of a filibuster.


    Joe Lieberman is a pompous jackass that is completely out of touch with his constituents in Connecticut, as well as the rest of the American people. He is a liability to Connecticut and the rest of the country just as surely as George W. Bush has destoyed the “American Dream” and replaced it with the “American Nightmare” for at least the next two generations.

    Indeed, Lieberman is a menace to the United States and all of its allies –including Israel — just as surely as the foreign and domestic policies of George W. Bush have fomented fierce hatred of our government abroad, and fear and mistrust of our government at home, and brought our country to the lowest point in its history (while greatly exacerbating the extremely dangerous, destabilized world political and economic situation created by Ronald Regan and George Bush, Sr.).

    It’s time for Joe Lieberman to join the scrap heap of American politics along with others who’s careers died in the wreckage of disastrous policies and missions, such as Herbert Hoover, Joe McCarthy, and Lyndon Johnson…

    It’s time to go, Joe!

  10. Capitalistpropaganda: You’ve got it right with regard to Joe Lieberman. My only exception to your comment is that he’s a “menace to……Israel”. Hardly. His only true interest is Israel. And in fact, he should not run as a candidate for the U.S. Senate but for the Israeli Knineset (sorry for the spelling).
    For those of you who would like to read the CT Post’s blog relative to our friend, Sal DiNardo, and his tax shenanigans you will find them at:
    Have a great ending to a grand Holiday weekend.
    And, oh yes, count me aboard the USS OIB for her cruise to nowhere.

  11. I’d say capitalistpropaganda has it about right in his assessment of Lieberman. However, the Dems. will probably wait until they gain their super majority this November before they oust him.

  12. Denis,
    now that the lawsuit is over, won’t the BPA be able to get that new commuter parking garage financed so the Ferry commuters can park their cars in a structure near the terminal and allow the Canyon Johnson deal to be built on the parking lots across from the ball field? The parking revenue would pay for the bond and keep the debt away from the City.

  13. countdown

    I know men are from Mars, and Women are from Venus.
    Sorry, but you are talking out of Uranus.

    Do you believe or expect anyone to believe that the Ferry company’s temporary shared parking lot with the Bluefish lot is delaying Canyon Johnson deal. Canyon Johnson may end up becoming the Magic Canyon Johnson disappearing act. Yea, there are a real lot of people commuting to Port Jeff. Daytrippers? Yes! Ancillary parking will be available in winter lot attached to the ballpark. Further parking will be available on former Marina Apt. site, where it is presently being used as a staging area for UI substation.

    Port Authority, I believe, has always had bonding ability and a sight was proposed and approved years ago. No quarrel that the parking garage is a good solution, but your rationalization that Ferry company is responsible for lack of Canyon Johnson development is grossly disingenous.

  14. I understand from a reliable source that both the Magic Johnson and Steel Point deals are virtually dead due to financing–the Steel Point developers are looking for a purchaser.

    I’m not privy to anyone who is knowledgeable relative to the terms of contract and am wondering whether there is a date in the contract by which development of both projects must begin after which the City may rescind the contract(s) and seek other developers. Admittedly, the economy is down and financing is difficult, but this would have been the time to get both developments underway and ready for the upturn which should begin next year.

    Does anyone know whether the City has received the $5,000,000 from the Steel Point developers? If what I have read is true, the said payment would result in a concurrent conveyance of the property to the developer.

  15. con filardi – I am so disappointed to hear about Magic Johnson’s project going down the tubes. Our economy is in a bad way everywhere in this country, but that would have been such a boost to that area. The project at Seaside/Remington was bad enough to lose out on, but this is just as bad. Just really sad these things have a way of bottoming out.

  16. capitalist propaganda – Joe Lieberman is a total waste, he disgusts me. I agree that he shouldn’t be chairman of homeland security and the dems should dump him, you can’t count on him to side with Democrats and the way he sucks up to Bush the warmonger is pathetic. We here in connecticut need to dump his sorry ass in the next election, it’s just too bad we have to wait so long to do it.

  17. Urban Feline

    Let the Good Himes roll over Shays’ ass first. Then we can go after Elmer Fudd.

    Hey that new Juvey Hall looks like a nice joint. It’s so nice, with the hoops, classrooms, and 3 square meals, I almost wish I was a juvenile delinquent again. Too bad they aren’t making it into a coed facility. I could learn to conjugate my verbs and have conjugal visits at the same time. No parietal hours would be required.

    And those magnificent waterviews. The only downside I hear are the train whistles and fire engine sirens.

    Otherwise it’s like living on the River Seine.

    Keeley is right about that only in Bridgeport would we allow this to happen.

  18. up on bridgeport – you are right on. Shays needs to be put out to pasture in this election. Go Himes! Your posting about the juvenile jail sure sounds like its a mini-country club, good preparation for when they end up in the real slammer. With that kind of punishment, they probably prefer to be there than home. (I liked the “urban feline” label).

  19. The Bangalore-to-Bridgeport expressway is well-established and worth billions to India.
    The Bridgeport-to-Bangalore expressway is under-established and worth only hundreds of dollars to the Park City. But all it takes is a computer, a printer, a phone line and a willingness to speak to foreigners who speak better English than you or I do. The product we make is easy to produce — the challenge is finding people eager to buy what they don’t want to make themselves. We’re getting better at that. Failure precedes success — ask any winner.
    O.P.I.C.s or one-person internet companies are the delivery system and here’s the best part: OPICs are self-funded and don’t involve outside investors. Midtown Equities is a fair weather investor and as a developer, Magic Johnson is an incomplete ballplayer and I, along with others, are using mankind’s most accurate measuring device to prove it! We export a product made of paper and import the kind of money accepted at any local bank. Don’t be surprised if the failure of politics gives way to the triumph of economics.

  20. Golfer of The Rialto!

    Denis O’Malley, a good guy, has gone from tee times to tea time.

    Yahooy, with his hard on, and fart commentary yesterday, pulled a boner and shit in his pants.

    Thanks for your time ’til next time.

  21. I’ll be brief: the skillset neded to be an OPIC is the antithesis of what it takes to be a blogger.
    This blog is full of whiners and complainers. At best, we produce winers and champagners.

  22. This “Ship of Fools”, sorry I’m only speaking for myself.
    Con I know for a fact is real navy and an officer to top it, let him tell you some of his great stories.
    Mr. Kelly can pour out the grog for us.
    Moonbeam can walk the plank, for all I now feel about him.
    Slick Sal would pollute the water, don’t make him ship’s purser.
    Bruce could be the professor, but what kind of a professor can make a radio out of a coconut, but can’t fix a hole in a ship and God knows the ship Bpt. is sinking and Bruce won’t let it sink.

    The casting will have me thinking all night
    Thanks for the fun
    Now who is it we keelhaul? ……… could be more than one
    Lennie is the natural captain

  23. Tom Kelly,
    Lighten up, will ya? Whether it is Canyon Johnson’s group or the City/BHA puts out another request for proposal, the Ferry parking is still going to be a problem that has to be solved for that area to be developed. All I was stating was that the Ferry parking garage needs to get built so construction equipment can start working on those two arena/ballfield parking lots. I don’t know if Canyon Johnson’s group was using it as an excuse. I don’t even remember that deal going before Council with a land disposition agreement. I remember a six-month Memorandum of Understanding so they could poke holes in the dirt and finish their due diligence but I don’t remember a land disposition contract getting Council approval. The bottom line is the economy will cycle back and Bridgeport needs another parking solution for those lots. Now that the Port Authority lawsuit is over, I think they can get that garage done because they have the ability to finance projects. I also thought the two additional decks on the transit garage would have been under construction by now.

    As for Steel Point, that deal was supposed to go to the Planning and Zoning Board months ago to establish the design district and get their development plan approved. I bet they aren’t going anywhere near that Board until the Mayor straightens out the appointments. The chair is a lame duck which is really a problem. There aren’t enough members to have the big deals take the risk on a hearing. An earlier posting here said that the Council has tabled the appointments for the indefinite future. No money goes to the city on Steel Point until the zoning is done, the taxing district is created, and the bonds are sold. Then the money and property change hands. The silence is deafening.

  24. LennieGrimaldi it seems to me you are a Republican. Now who are you voting for, McCain??? Are you voting for Shays? Because it seems like before when this blog did not have its own site it was good but now it’s too Republican so shame on you Lennie it seems like you love John McSame.

  25. LennieGrimaldi That’s good to know. So where is your Voting precinct, is it at Winthrop? And come November you should have something called video the vote meaning you interview some people from around the precincts on election day and then put it on the blog; now that would be cool.

  26. Local eyes – you still have me puzzled every time you post about your OPIC, what is it exactly that you’re selling on-line to overseas countries? Are you like an e-bay or something?

  27. countdown

    The Port Authority has had the ability to bond for years. That was always one of the advantages of forming the authority. They could bond without adding any exposure to the city. Denis OMalley could bring us to speed regarding parking garage plan that was in place adjacent to ferry location and at the time the UI property.

    You bring up some interesting points regarding the MOU.
    Furthermore that land is owned by the BHA with a master lease agreement with the city. Have those tracts of land even gone in front of zoning?

    Yes, zoning is being held in abeyance without filling vacancies. However, most of the commissioners are still serving including the very capable Lady Chair.

    Capital markets are collapsing along with RCI/Midtown Equities/Rex etc. and the daisy chain continues. The afore mentioned entities are in a 4 corner stall. The LDA on Steal Point was passed by the council the night before the mayoral and municipal elections. There were and are a lot of questions that are unanswered. Donna Curran paid the political price for asking the tough questions, and not voting for the LDA. Has the City even gone to Zoning to create a special zone for that location? Eleven years we are now into the Steal Point project and I think the lawyers on the project are Nada, Zilch and Nothing LLC.

    I don’t mean to Blast Off on you countdown, but as Judge Judy says: “Don’t pee on my leg and tell me it’s raining!”

    Yes, the silence is deafening and people in this administration can’t even read lips.

  28. Tom: Appreciate your analysis of the situation. All of this speculation could be squelched if the Mayor in his weekly report would tell the public whether these projects are progressing or are no longer viable. Where is the CT Post? I should think that all this is public information to which the media would have access.
    And to think that at this time last year we all had high hopes that the City was finally on track to bringing about a change in Bridgeport. – Those hopes are dashed. I have been a resident for only seven and one half years and have finally come to understand the terrible defeatist attitude of the taxpayers.
    We all remember Moonbeam’s promises last year: to wit, the $600.00 tax credit; that he was going to carry the ball the final 5 yards for a touchdown; and he was going to get the Wheeler Fountain running. You have the answer to the first two promises, and as to the Wheeler Fountain, not only is it not running it is overrun with weeds and a drunk has run her car into one of the fountain’s parts. It would take probably two or three phone calls from the Mayor’s office to the Bank of America, People’s Bank, Subway’s, DeLuca and Aquarion, to come up with sufficient funds to restore it. Folks this administration is dysfunctional and ineffective!

  29. Tom Kelly,
    The City doesn’t apply for the design development district. The developer has to do it because all of the costs associated with the paperwork is on the developer’s dime. The developer also has to submit a very detailed development plan which is very very expensive. The smart developers are staying away from the PZC because of the tenuous situation for the commissioners. Their reasoning is solid. If they choose to go ahead with less than a full complement of members or members with terms that are not expired, they are risking that the matter is continued and the lame duck member is thrown off and a new member is appointed. Then the developer and all of their expensive lawyers and consultants have to start all over again. So, the smart ones are staying away. As for the questions regarding the Land Disposition agreement, most of those questions cannot be answered until the updated economic market studies are done right before the taxing district votes to issue the bonds. If the developers spent the money in December to answer all those questions, all the research would have been stale by the time they need to have the TIF bonds rated and sold. If the answers are poor, the bonds will not be issued and the land will not be sold to the Developer. It has been seven months, someone should tell the residents what is going on. The waiting for the new Economic Development chief is really getting ridiculous.

  30. countdown

    With all due respect are you suggesting that that yet another updated economic market study is going to be done on Steal Point. So I guess we are not going to ever see any 50-story residential buildings, and 3500 housing units at Steal Point. Midtown is getting ready to jump out of the windows of their much ballyhooed condos in Miami.

    Sorry, but I strongly disagree regarding zoning. The City as the property owner (Steal Point) or land controlling entity (Canyon Johnson location) can make application similar to many of the applications that have been brought forth by OPED to zoning.

    The land entity could make application for a zone change for a PUD or MUD filling in the blanks to the desired use of property. Also if there was a designated City Master Plan incorporating some of the design ideas zoning would be a moot issue except where permitted uses require a special permit.

    Sorry, we are never going to agree regarding your argument about the make-up of the zoning board. These aren’t controversial projects similar to an Adult Entertainment or Environmental Justice issue. I don’t know of any zoning commissioner or alternate who would tank these projects. Especially if the City was the applicant.

    If Bridgeport took these initiatives we wouldn’t have to hold our hands on our asses or be held hostage by non-performing developers wating to get bought out of their position. I have seen this movie many times before in Bridgeport.

    How’s that ULI thing working out?

  31. While some remain puzzled, others try to understand. NO ONE is going to reveal to another blogger that thing that makes them money — but as always, something can be said about it…

    It’s drive time in Bangalore and in two hours we’ll start phoning prospects. But first, it’s time to produce — some say manufacture — a new supply of product. Everybody’s is different. It’s made of paper and contains text, graphics or photos. It’s sold in what we call 30×3 boxes. We have a particular market and we’re usually well-received. They like it because they think it’s uniquely American – anyone can produce it, but no one does. Determinants of success include creativity, your phone/sales techniques, understanding a totally new culture and luck. PayPal has a new currency translater that makes us ever-conscious of the dollar’s movements. A lower dollar is good for their purchases. I’ve got a “warehouse” the size of three toasters that can fit in the back of the car. My two favorite things: driving to the post office and walking to the mailbox.

    There, I did it: I finished the post and didn’t mention that an OPIC is a One-Person Internet Company (wink).

  32. Lennie and OIB fans:

    Ezequiel and Chico remain “reluctant” to debate the issues affecting the 130th District or to participate in “meet the candidates” events, and I’m still not getting any calls (too early still?) from anyone interested in running a winning State Rep campaign with a possible $30,000.00 budget… accordingly, I would like to ask for everyone’s indulgence if I turn my attention to my wife for a moment and write her a “first-time political aspirant’s love letter to his wife.” Here, we go…

    My dearest Lovey,

    In less than 12 hours you will finally be in the East Side to take your place as perhaps the first doctor to move to the East Side and the 130th State Rep District since I don’t really know when…a while ago anyway…we’ve been married for a year and two weeks, but have never really spent more than four days in a row together, except for the honeymoon week, because of your one year fellowship in Boston.

    Nevertheless, I believe the sacrifice was well worth it as you have become a better surgeon and a more confident physician, especially in your chosen field of glaucoma. As an ophthalmologist, you have a special gift and extremely specialized knowledge and skills to help countless of future patients to preserve their vision and to try to help others from going unnecessarily blind.

    Likewise, as a lawyer, I try to help clients and others to preserve their legal rights and advocate for those who perhaps may otherwise not have a voice in our community.

    In this upcoming campaign, I want to raise the issue of the injustices caused by the Drug War and the debilitating impact it has on individuals, families and neighborhoods through our 130th District. The Drug War is racially biased and economically unjust. We should not continue to turn a blind eye to the senselessness and wastefulness of the Drug War. There are many other ways to promote peace, healing, and justice. This is our challenge.

    I am and will always be grateful to you for your love, dedication and willingness to stand with me as I take on an additional interest and an almost all-the-time consuming effort to obtain the Democratic nomination for State Rep of the 130th District on August 12. I know you will be an enthusiastic campaigner in the next several weeks and will serve as leading cheerleader for the campaign for the 130th District.

    I promise you this: you will eat and drink at every restaurant and drinking establishment across this district in the next 5 weeks! From Ralph n’ Richs and Roberto’s to Famous Pizza and Two Boots to the Peruvian Corner and Pho Saigon… Plus we’re going to see the Bluefish, in the district, on Thursday for burgers, beer and hot dogs after we enjoy Wayne Hiller’s concert on McLevy Green!

    Love always,


  33. donj: When did the free exchange of ideas and opinions become a bad idea? There are always two sides to every debate. For this to be a Democratic blog only would be boring. There is nothing worse than people blowing smoke up each other’s asses.
    Don’t tell me you are one of those people who would vote for a ham sandwich if it were on the Democratic line.

  34. Sylvester – I thought you were running for state rep in the 130th and that’s the west side not the east side
    wondering – Turns out that I voted for a ham sandwich when I voted for Shays the last election!

  35. Tom Kelly,
    Yes–there must be an updated economic analysis within a couple of months of going out to market for the TIF bond sale. The Developer has to pay for that and the other studies required before $190 million in bonds are issued by a taxing district.

    Yes, the City has been the applicant on zoning changes in the past when the city was owner of small properties but on these large deals, the zoning requires much more due diligence, studies, and the like. The developer has to pay for them.

    And yes, large projects are much more controversial and their impact is much more significant than the run of the mill PZC petitions. Sorry, we disagree. If Bridgeport is to play in the real estate big leagues it has to do what the ULI study outlined. The city was halfway there. It will take the new ED Director and a full complement of land use board members who are TRAINED to take the City to the goal line.

  36. Gossip Of The Rialto!

    Christmas In July?

    Mayor Finch turns into Frosty the Snowman on WICC this morning. Blames building disrepairs on Mason’s. I guess they weren’t part of AFSCME union. Knights of Columbus, The Loyal Order of the Moose, and BPOE may be next target.

    The Mayor is sure an Odd Fellow!

  37. “countdown // Jul 7, 2008 at 10:00 am

    If Bridgeport is to play in the real estate big leagues it has to do what the ULI study outlined. The city was halfway there. It will take the new ED Director and a full complement of land use board members that are TRAINED to take the City to the goal line.”

    Sounds to me like Bridgeport needs to adopt A NO MORON POLICY.

    This is to all of you philistines who bust my chops every time I support the No Moron concept…


  38. Would someone prepare a glossary of acronyms which may be used on the blog and publish them so that we might have them next to our computers for reference purposes when reading “comments”. My head is swimming in them and my old brain refuses to translate.

  39. City Kitty: I really don’t see much difference in either candidate. I do have my reservations when we dems keep nominating people from the gold coast of Fairfield County.
    I really have to wonder if they understand big-city problems. this is not a Shays endorsement as I don’t think he understands our problems either. I see a man in congress with a lot of seniority who just does not bring home the big bucks. When you look at the other congress people and the money they bring to their district you wonder why Shays can’t do that. I guess the only thing that I can see in Shays’ favor is I get to have his property taxes paid in Bridgeport.

  40. wondering – that’s why I’m willing to give Himes a chance. I know he’s from the gold coast, but he came up poor and got there on his own, unlike Shays who was always rich. His performance has been getting worse and worse, so it’s time for him to take a one-way trip to Iraq. It’s too bad we don’t have a good candidate from B-port, but we have a hard enough time finding decent candidates to run for state offices, let alone congress. Let’s hope the turkey sandwich will turn out to be a turkey deluxe…we need a change.

  41. no offense intended Harry, just sometime I think that since I’m not there, I just don’t get it…not really even sure what gossip of the rialto means. 🙂

  42. Summer (Or anyone) –

    What is the status of these projects?
    Where is this $6.65M High Speed Ferry?
    It says he got $7.2 for Bpts Police, Fire and EMS. I’d like to see what of that money Bridgeport EMS got. AMR is a publicly held for profit corporation that has a contract with the City.
    And the $12.25M Seaview Ave Corridor? I didn’t know it cost O&G so much to sweep the street.

  43. HereWeGo? Nowhere!!

    Shays is blowing so much smoke up Summer Wind’s ass. It’s going to form a wind tunnel, and, he’s going to need some Beano.

    Shays It Ain’t So Chris!

  44. Here we go – I can’t remember Shays doing anything for b-port let alone anything like getting us those big bucks. Pass the turkey sandwiches! And pass him up on election day! go Himes! We have to give somebody new a chance.

  45. That new 17-bay bus terminal and the two new decks that are going to be built on the transit garage by the arena are courtesy of Congressman Shays’ seniority.

    There is a state of the art emergency operations center under construction for Bridgeport with all the new technology so the first responders will be able to talk to each other, no matter what frequency. Thank you Congressman Shays.

    There is money to finish the feasibility and design work and build the high speed ferry terminal that will link Bridgeport, Stamford and mid-town Manhattan. Not sure if it is to go on the former Logistec site or the former Remington Shaver plant site. The engineers were working through those numbers. The folks in Stamford want the high speed ferry to also link to Long Island. Thank you, Congressman Shays.

    The environmental and engineering money to build a limited access road between I-95 and Boston Post Road along Seaview Avenue is now in place. Seaview Avenue under the railroad is a huge flooding problem and EMS has to go over Central Avenue to get to the hospital due to clearance problems. The trucks have to go around as well. When Route 8 and I-95 get plugged up with an accident or whatever, the Seaview Avenue corridor will be the secondary north-south connector to miss that intersection. It is also the location for a second train station and parking garage although the funding for that isn’t in place yet. Thank you Congressman Shays.

    So my vote is with Congressman Shays. He is not blowing smoke. He has and continues to deliver millions for Bridgeport.

  46. Summer Wind
    Keeley told me to tell you “Franks a lot!” Auden’s dog, Harold, looks like a Frank…footer.


    You really are believing your own hype.

    Shays is blowing smoke up Summer Wind’s ass and you are talking out of your ass.

    However, I think it is wonderful that you will finally be able to vote in Bridgeport for a State and Federal election.

  47. Tom Kelly,
    You are a pretty nasty blogger.

    Someone asked for the information and I gave them the facts, sir, just the facts. Most of the information is either on the city’s website or the master plan website–if you care to take the time to research it yourself.

    I have and will continue to vote in Bridgeport–God willing and hoping my health stays good.

  48. countdown

    Facts or Fiction?

    I apologize for being so hard on you. Do you believe everything you read on the master plan or the city’s website? Go look at the BRBC’s overlay of the Litany of Ain’ts that have been proposed over the years.

    I do my research and have seen a lot of big projects that have not happened. I have been hearing about Seaview Avenue for over 15 years. Downtown Intermodal or is Externmodal Train Station how’s that working out?
    We got short-sheeted by Fairfield with their Metro Center. They will have a push-pull effect that you need for a TOD, sorry Con, a Transit Oriented District. The Bus Terminal took all the working people off the street. It could have been built for next to nothing similar to Stamford’s bus bays under the Turnpike across from Arena commuter lot.

    Glad to see that you will continue to vote in Bridgeport. It is very frustrating when many people in city government and other agencies continue to borrow our watch, to tell us what time it is.

    Stay well.

  49. If you live in Bridgeport and you’re voting for Shays you are a idiot but if you live in Greenwich then Shays is your man. I really think Himes is going to win because of the real high turnout that Obama will get in Bridgeport and Himes will do good in the other 2 big cities. As for Bridgeport Himes will at least get 80% of the vote here.

  50. Summer Wind:
    Thanks for referring us to Chris’ website which sets forth all the the bacon he has garnered for Bridgeport. – It is a considerable record!!! With his seniority and know-how I think we would be voting against our own interests in not giving him our vote. He’s a Bridgeport neighbor and
    worthy of our support.
    Yes, Tom, I too do not always agree with Chris, but I don’t believe that we should cut off our noses to spite our faces. A vote for Chris is a vote for Bridgeport.

  51. Lol the only reason Shays has that on his site is because they are worried about the size of the victory Himes will get here in Bpt. Vote Himes, Vote Obama, Vote Russo

  52. donj:
    As you recommended, I went to the website and was frightened by what I read in the comments section. I hardly want to be associated with people who can’t speak or write English. So far as I know gibberish is not an acceptable language and the sooner those folks understand that, the sooner they will be part of mainstream America.

  53. Bpt. original home to P.T. Barnum & The Circus; and what a Circus Bpt’s. state legislation elections are becoming! At a time while our country is in a recession that seems to be getting worse, voters are left with unexperienced personal gain & nepotism-backed candidates that will be nothing more than benchwarmers for a political clique once in Hartford. Are we to believe that Bpt. local districts had no valet candidates to run against “some” of the do-nothing state legislation incumbents now in office? And on the other hand, how about the lack of endorsments of “some” of those incumbents that have worked hard up in Hartford for Conn. & city of Bpt.??? It’s time to stop voting only along political party lines & start voting for individuals that can do the job, regardless of political party! Your vote counts so why not pick the “best” candidate for the job, instead of just voting for a political party puppet!

  54. Grapevine news says the Finch Admin. has pulled the plug on long-time (25yrs.) city employee Brian Williams. He’s been asked to leave or retire from his job so the Admin. can give away yet another city job to a Finch election worker. Rumors say a Mr. Gomes, owner of Red Rooster Deli??? Job freeze, what job freeze??? Just create a new position that’s all!


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