Former City Councilman Tom White has an interesting perspective on how the city’s legislative body works. White, the council’s legislative liaison for several years, was whited out of the budget last year for trying to reform the way it conducts business, according to a federal lawsuit he brought against the city several months ago represented by former Mayor Tom Bucci, an expert in labor law, who’s won numerous settlements on behalf of city employees against the city. The community action group Citizens Working 4 a Better Bridgeport has been pounding the pavement, attending numerous public meetings trying to bring attention to conflicts of interest such as city employees serving on the City Council approving their own wages and benefits. White, for one, says city government is morally compromised, as he shared in a letter to members of the community group, published here with the approval of White, in response to a City Council budget meeting this week.
White references this story in the CT Post. White’s memo:
Forgive my condescending attitude, but does anyone seriously feel that (City Council President Tom) McCarthy is moved by suggesting he must do right by the citizens of Bridgeport? His job (while a conflict of interest) is to get the mayor’s budget through the city council, including his nearly $15,000 pay increase. Oh, has anyone noticed and brought up the point that since he became council president, his salary has increased from $65,000 to $114,000? His performance appraisals must show glowing performance. But wait, the city has no job performance appraisal system. Golly, could it be that his role in the Finch administration is to control the city council?
You will reach some of the council members with your message, but possibly fewer will vote against a tax increase than last year. Too many of them are city employees, have a daughter, husband, etc. dependent on the Finch administration for a job.
The attached CT Post story is simply ‘he said, she said.’ No research is demonstrated. Brian Lockhart is capable of much more if the the CT Post allowed coverage of city hall matters as they should be done.
I admire your effort being made to appeal to the city council, but their vote is based on allegiance to the DTC and whatever quid pro quo deal (such as their jobs) they can strike with the Mayor via McCarthy.
Bridgeport city government is a morally compromised institution. The city council is not embarrassed or apologetic about their lack of knowledge, critical thinking skills or their unethical behavior. I have shared some specific suggestions with CW4BB based on my first-hand experience as part of moving forward.
Sorry I am so pragmatic.