Trumbull’s Flush Job, News From The Post, And Monkey Suit

If the city is going to create a regional waste water authority, looks like it’ll have to do it without Trumbull.

Trumbull is sandwiched by Bridgeport and Monroe, so the only way Monroe can send its effluent to Bridgeport is through Trumbull. But Trumbull doesn’t want to play so this creates a fascinating configuration. State law allows creation of a regional authority by two towns, even if they’re not contiguous.

When Trumbull started to crunch the numbers it apparently didn’t make sense to do the deal. The major stumbling block for Trumbull’s entry is the massive capital improvements that must be made to the city’s antiquated sewage treatment system such as separating the sewer and storm pipes.

During heavy rains the water and effluent pass through the same pipe and oops, there goes the East Side under water.

By creating a separate regional entity, Mayor Bill Finch can transfer debt service for the city’s sewage treatment operation over to a new authority. This will help boost the city’s fund balance which will make Wall Street bond rating agencies smile on the city’s credit worthiness.

Bridgeport will move forward, without Trumbull, to try to make the deal work with Monroe. The new authority, if created in the expected 9 to 12 month timeframe, will have to satisfy Trumbull for allowing a Monroe hook-up. That should be an interesting negotiation.

The genesis of the regional authority is the plan by developer Bob Scinto to relocate the Jewish Home for the Elderly from Farifield to property he owns in Monroe. His property isn’t large enough for a stand-alone sewage treatment facility so to make the deal work Monroe would hook into the Trumbull pipeline that’s connected to Bridgeport.

Post It Note

What’s going on at the Connecticut Post? Awful times for everyone in print journalism. Post owner Hearst is looking for a few willing men and women to accept buyout offers at its Connecticut papers. From what I hear six or so in the Post news operation will accept.

Hearst owns a regional triangle of daily papers in Fairfield County from Greenwich and Stamford, over to Bridgeport and Danbury. I do most of my news reading on line, but I do receive both the Post and Danbury News-Times on Sunday. The guts of each Sunday paper is beginning to look similar, certainly several sections are the same. It seems just a matter of time before the papers will be identical except for the front page and a few jump pages.

And with that will come more consolidation and more cuts, and less knowledge of the community and less reporting. The kids that end up filling the web version of the paper will not understand the city such as an old fart like me so spread the word (and now for a commercial interruption), if you want a slice of government and political life you cannot get anywhere else, check out OIB.

Willie’s Monkey Suit

Hey, it looks like attorney Chuck Willinger finally has the monkey off his back. The savvy land-use attorney who was a target–and survived–the federal probe of Joe Ganim’s administration, has brought a lawsuit on behalf of the woman who was mauled in that ape attack. Maybe we’ll get Chuck to do a Pol Pod.

News release from Congressman Himes and Mayor Finch

Himes, Finch Announce $6M to Lessen Foreclosure Crisis

1,000 local foreclosures highlight need for assistance

BRIDGEPORT, CT – Congressman Jim Himes (CT-4) and Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch announced today that $5,865,300 in federal funding to Bridgeport will be used to help lessen the crippling effects of foreclosure crisis through the Neighborhood Stabilization Program. With over 1,000 foreclosed homes in Bridgeport, the investment is critical to stemming the tide of foreclosures the city faces and preventing the blight, reduced property tax value, and abandonment that inhibit economic development.

“Addressing the foreclosure crisis at the heart of our economic melt-down is one of the most important things we can do to turn our economy around,” said Congressman Himes. “I applaud Mayor Finch for taking quick action to ensure this funding gets into the hands of real people to make a real difference in our economy.”

In keeping with the premise that federal money should be spent quickly to ensure it has the greatest effect, the city must distribute this funding in the next 18 months. Additionally, in order to ensure that the help gets to those that need it most, 30% of the funds must be used for households at or below 50% of area median income. The program will invest in local neighborhoods in a number of ways, including:

Financial Mechanisms to purchase and redevelop foreclosed properties;
Purchase and rehabilitate homes and residential properties that have been abandoned or foreclosed upon;
Establish land banks for homes that have been foreclosed upon;
Demolish blighted structures; and
Redevelop demolished or blighted properties.

The city plans to partner with Housing Development Fund of Lower Fairfield County to leverage an additional $26.2 million of Smart Move Loan Pool funds.

“The magnitude of the housing crisis in the city of Bridgeport has no parallel in Connecticut,” Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch said. “Circumstances here are among the very worst in the country, but the $6 million will go a long way to helping us stabilize neighborhoods and help people get into homes they can afford. We are grateful to our partners at HUD, on Capitol Hill, and at the state Department of Economic and Community Development for recognizing the great need we have here in Bridgeport.”

Additional funding for local Neighborhood Stabilization Programs is also possible. While the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was in negotiations between the U.S. House and Senate, Congressman Himes fought to maintain funding for the Neighborhood Stabilization Program. In a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Congressman Himes and a number of his colleagues explained that neighborhoods are in desperate need of these funds, which have successfully helped. As a result, an additional $1.9 billion from the Recovery Act will be available for Neighborhood Stabilization Programs through a competitive grant process.

Eddie and Anthony

State Senators Ed Gomes and Anthony Musto want to know what’s on your mind. Here’s your chance to speak up. See news release below:


Schedule town-hall style forum for Monday, March 23

Bridgeport – State Senators Edwin Gomes (D-Bridgeport) and Anthony Musto (D-Trumbull) will host a town-hall style budget forum for area residents on Monday, March 23, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Burroughs Community Center on Fairfield Avenue.

The forum will focus on the current fiscal climate in the state, the budget deficit, the governor’s proposals to solve the budget crisis and the legislative efforts underway to help restore the state’s economy. The lawmakers will make a presentation and then take questions from those in attendance.

“These are tough times, and people have a lot of questions about what certain proposals will mean for them and what the legislature is going to do,” said Senator Gomes. “I hope that this forum will help answer those questions for people in Bridgeport.”

“We’re dealing with a budget deficit that’s really unprecedented, and that’s going to have a real impact on the services that the state provides,” Senator Musto said. “We need to hear from the people. We need to know their thoughts and know what’s most important to them. This forum will provide that opportunity, and I urge Bridgeport residents to come to the Burroughs Community Center and make their voices heard.”



    1. Good for Willinger to take the case. I think he’s selling it short to go for $1,000,000.00. The poor woman is having her face reconstructed, for cryin’ out loud. Add another zero to the left of the decimal point.


    The ghost of St. Patrick gave free drink tickets to all OIB bloggers yesterday. Bar owners that didn’t oblige were promptly taken out back and roughed up.

    Insanity! (wink)

  2. “Bridgeport Now” could not be seen yesterday due to an error by Soundveiw and they apologized today for this. We showed up at the studio and it was closed.

    1. The report I got on this Soundview studio problem is that it resulted from a horde of drunken-ass St. Patrick parade goers. First the city hall deposit theft, then the Stop & Shoplift steak scandal and now this … this town needs an enema.

      I’ve got the whole story and exclusive video of this tragic event on today’s blog entry:
      St. Paddy’s Day Snake Shenanigans in Bridgeport

      Mr. Barnum’s Bridgeport To Nowhere

  3. Does the Kid think that Willinger is taking this case Pro Bono? He is taking it Pro Chuckie. 1/3 off of the top. The only good thing that can come out of this is if Chuckie gets too distracted with this big case that he stops representing deadbeat developers and leaves wrecking neighborhoods to Ray Rizio.

  4. We are getting screwed to the tune of $165 million by an amendment added to the AIG bailout by Chris Dodd. He took out legislation that would have taken away the AIG bonuses and replaced it with an amendment guaranteeing these bonuses. The president knew, his treasury secretary knew and nothing was done to stop it. Not a word on this blog, amazing.
    There will probably be 4 or 5 appearances by Parziale before the case is over. She will probably get a fine or accelerated rehabilitation. It is conceivable that this case could go into June.
    BTW where are all the Obama supporters that filled this blog with bullshit during the election? His popularity is dropping like a stone. His policies are leading to mini-Boston Tea parties around the country.

    1. We are getting screwed to the tune of $165 million by an amendment added to the AIG bailout by Chris Dodd. He took out legislation that would have taken away the AIG bonuses and replaced it with an amendment guaranteeing these bonuses. The president knew, his treasury secretary knew and nothing was done to stop it. Not a word on this blog, amazing.

      Actually Wondering, you are incorrect. What’s interesting is that you have it half right–Dodd did amend the bailout bill–only his amendment was to add retroactive bonus limitations that would have prevented most of the AIG payouts that just happened. Obama was opposed to the retroactivity, and was able to get it removed in conference.

      Here’s the article from 2/14:


      1. And the key paragraphs:

        The restriction with the most bite would bar top executives from receiving bonuses exceeding one-third of their annual pay. Any bonus would have to be in the form of long-term incentives, like restricted stock, which could not be cashed out until the TARP money was repaid in full.

        The provision, written by Senator Christopher J. Dodd, Democrat of Connecticut, highlighted the growing wrath among lawmakers and voters over the lavish compensation that top Wall Street firms and big banks awarded to senior executives at the same time that many of the companies, teetering on the brink of insolvency, received taxpayer-paid bailouts.

        “The decisions of certain Wall Street executives to enrich themselves at the expense of taxpayers have seriously undermined public confidence,” Mr. Dodd said Friday. “These tough new rules will help ensure that taxpayer dollars no longer effectively subsidize lavish Wall Street bonuses.”

        Top economic advisers to President Obama adamantly opposed the pay restrictions, according to Congressional officials, warning lawmakers behind closed doors that they went too far and would cause a brain drain in the financial industry during an acute crisis. Another worry is the tougher restrictions may encourage executives to more quickly pay back the government’s investments since, in a compromise with the financial industry, banks no longer have to replace federal funds with private capital. That could remove an extra capital cushion, further reducing lending.

  5. *** Obama hasn’t reached 100 days legally in office yet & you’re blaming him for AIG’s & Dodd’s doings and a few others that have had their hands in the cookie jar for years now! Why is it that it seems that minority politicians, athletes in general, white collar, blue collar workers, artists etc. always need to perform far & beyond the norm to get over-all recognition from the census majority? An over-all national crisis in economics, defense, foreign policy, national debt, healthcare, education, etc. that has boiled over from the last 8yrs. yet Obama’s (a black man & President) policies are already being criticized as failures! Go figure? ***

  6. Marlys: You are right and I am right when it comes to AIG; attached is a web site showing what Dodd did for AIG.
    below is an excerpt:

    CHRIS DODD UPDATE: Amid AIG Furor, Dodd Tries To Undo Bonus Protections He Put In. “While the Senate was constructing the $787 billion stimulus last month, Dodd added an executive-compensation restriction to the bill. That amendment provides an ‘exception for contractually obligated bonuses agreed on before Feb. 11, 2009’ — which exempts the very AIG bonuses Dodd and others are now seeking to tax … Separately, Sen. Dodd was AIG’s largest single recipient of campaign donations during the 2008 election cycle with $103,100, according to”

    So as I read it we are both right and Dodd is a scumbag.

  7. Mojo: Do we not say anything at all because the president is black? Do we sit on our hands and say it’s all right? Look they are throwing money around like crazy people. His policies are too numerous at one time to all work. Look at the stimulus package–Billions of dollars and a bill that no one read before they voted even though Obama had said in his campaign that no such bill should be voted on before a 5-day waiting period. Did you know that the stimulus bill negated a trade agreement with Mexico? Where do you think all this money for all these projects is going to come from? Just the rich? The Carp tax on energy to redo the electrical grid will tax us all in our utility bills. I would have liked to have seen the economy worked on along with the bailouts and then move on to energy and health care.
    Let’s not start with the race card, you know that is BS. What is it, every time it gets warm in the kitchen we start with the race card? If he is a one-termer is that going to be a race card deal? Now that we have a black president does that mean we will always have a black president?
    What I said about the president knowing was true. He knew this past Thursday and his treasury secretary knew way longer than that.

    1. *** You’re reading a little too much into it concerning negative Obama opinions being solely racial. However overall, the statement on minorities having to overdo things in general to sometimes get credit I stand by. Touchy subject no doubt, yet here in the North for instance the “wolf” is in sheep’s clothing (disguised) but in the South, the “wolf” shows its teeth & claws, no disguises needed ’cause everyone knows who the “wolf” is more or less. ***

  8. Fix the problem; don’t worry about fixing the blame. Be happy that EVERYONE in DC has reached the proper conclusion which is the American taxpayers don’t want these bonuses paid. PERIOD. The thieving Wall Street types will always try to find a loophole. That is what they do for a living. Whether the solution lies in targeted tax legislation, changing previous bailout amounts or future funding, just make sure these obscene bonuses are DOA.

  9. Grin: I fear that what I saw of the hearings today was nothing more than a dog and pony show. I don’t think they will be able to fix those obscene contracts. If nothing else maybe just maybe the people in Washington will slow down and read the fine print before they blindly vote more bail-out money.

  10. www


    Written by David Rojas
    Friday, 23 January 2009

    After a series of fact-finding meetings at the Legislative Office Building in 2008, Connecticut State Representative Andres Ayala, Jr., (128th District), and a number of Latino leaders from non-profit agencies across the state agree that in order to adequately serve the needs of the Latino community in 2009 and beyond Latinos need to build better relationships and collaboration between their organizations, the general assembly and state departments.

    Representative Ayala acknowledged that “many Latino organizations, for years, have struggled to provide services to disadvantaged families in the Latino community while operating with meager budgets and, unfortunately, many agencies doing a good work have had to close their doors.” In a recent meeting at the Capitol, Representative Ayala said to the group that after a quick analysis of state department budgets he found “that less than one percent (. 01%) of State funds are dispersed to Latino agencies in the form of grants or contracts.” Considering the size of the Latino community, this is an unacceptable distribution of funds and, obviously, does not allow organizations to adequately provide services to needy members of the Latino community.

    Representative Ayala’s aim is that Latino organizations can more effectively communicate their concerns and work hand-in-hand with the legislature to provide the needed services to the Latino community. With this mind, the Latino leaders have organized an Advocacy Day at the Capitol on March 14th. ASPIRA commends Representative Andres Ayala, Jr., for his pro-active stance on Latino issues, especially, in the area of seeking to substantially close the growing Latino education achievement gap.

  11. Eeek!

    From the Hartford Courant via CNN tonight:

    “In an apparent change of his position, U.S. Sen. Christopher Dodd said Wednesday that he was aware of changes in legislation for a loophole that allowed highly controversial bonuses for AIG, the embattled insurance company that has received federal bailout money.

    In a live interview on CNN, Dodd said, “I agreed reluctantly. I was changing the amendment because others were insistent.”

    Previously, Dodd had said he was not a member of the conference committee that crafted the final version of the highly complicated bill. But he had come under strong fire from Republicans and others as the person who was involved in what CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer had called a “mysterious loophole” in the legislation.

    When Blitzer asked Dodd what had changed in his understanding between Tuesday and Wednesday, Dodd replied, “Going back and reviewing it. … I apologize if we had some confusion.”

  12. BF- I don’t think that’s possible. Although I know MOJO doesn’t think he is GOD I think he has some respect for the man. Needless to say he won’t be starting www or create wristbands that say WWAAD? What Would Andres Ayala Do.

  13. BF- come to think of it Mojo did good while Andres was Council President. Budget Co-Chair, helped pass a lot of his resolutions through the council to benefit his district. Had he played his cards right he could still be on the council today. Andres could have worked something out with Mitch to keep him on board in some capacity.

    1. F.O.A.A. *** I don’t play strip poker with a marked deck! Also, voting for Andres for Council President & J. Stafstrom for city DTC chairman the first time around was what got me thrown off the 131st district town committee by Mitch. So much for your so-called “words of advice”! ***

  14. La Salsa vive, llega hasta al cielo … Que Dios bendiga la tradición de nuestro pueblo …

    HIGH FIVE to Bpts Finest and Friends of Andres Ayala …

    March 18th marks a big feather in Andres Ayala’s hat … Job well done …

  15. Willinger is a first-class self-interested prick of the highest order. But he is an effective attorney. That poor lady in Stamford selected well when Willinger was hired. He will maximize the end result to the highest possible dollar award and will get 1/3rd for his efforts … just like every other litigator. Then I hope he buys a new house in Kansas and moves there permanently.

  16. I’m so nervous about all this money and yesterday the treasury department just issued “magic” money for the treasury notes. I’m beginning to wonder if anyone knows what they are doing. I’m just staying in my doghouse until I am no longer frightened.


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