What A Mess! Malloy Tells House–Who’ll Lead Governor’s Bridgeport Office?

Dan Malloy visited Bridgeport many times during the gubernatorial cycle including this summer for a campaign stop to highlight redevelopment of Steelpointe Harbor on the East Side. Malloy is with State Rep. Andres Ayala, an early Malloy supporter whose district includes the Steelpointe redevelopment area.

In an interview that will air Sunday at 11 a.m. on WFSB Channel 3, Governor-elect Dan Malloy tells Dennis House, host of Face The State that part of his solution to juice the state economy is infrastructure investment. We could use a lot of that in Bridgeport, including the Steelpointe Harbor redevelopment area on the East Side that Congressman Jim Himes announced several weeks ago will receive an $11 million infusion from the feds.

State Rep. Andres Ayala, an early Malloy supporter, provided Malloy a tour of his East Side district over the summer. I went along for the walking tour. Malloy will need many months to sort out the state budget mess including his first budget address in a few months. Not since Lowell Weicker has Bridgeport had a governor that said you have a friend and put words into action. Weicker didn’t have a bunch of pols or business community types begging him to help Bridgeport, he just did it on his own.

Weicker is responsible for hundreds of millions of dollars coming into Bridgeport from budgets he crafted, to gaming deals he cut, to using his executive power to build a Housatonic Community College Downtown, relocating the regional State Police from Westport to Bridgeport and millions more from a state purchase of the Beardsley Zoo and cleanup of the disgraceful Mount Trashmore in the East End. Weicker was a key reason why Mayor Joe Ganim did not raise taxes for 10 straight years. That takes balls and Weicker’s twins roared for Bridgeport.

Weicker created a governor’s office in Bridgeport that he actually used. John Rowland and Jodi Rell kept it open mostly for symbolic purposes. Hopefully, Malloy will keep it active and staff it with someone who can serve as a bridge between the governor and the city. Feel free to float some names.

House  reports:

“This state is a mess.” That’s what Governor-elect Dan Malloy said during a taping of “Face the State.” Malloy said he will “tell the truth” about the budget, explaining that Governor Rell and state lawmakers were not up front with citizens about the crisis we now find ourselves in.

Along with guest reporters Angela Dias of WTIC AM 1080 and Brian Lockhart of the Stamford Advocate we asked Malloy about how he plans to tackle the massive problems facing the state.

We wanted to know about taxes, jobs, and whether Malloy wants any of his former opponents working for him in the new administration and whether any Rell appointees will keep their jobs. We also asked what he thought about former Governor Rowland’s recent statement that a sure way out of the economic crisis is to jump start the economy by bonding and building. Rowland’s tenure saw massive construction in New Haven, Storrs, Hartford and elsewhere. Malloy said he hadn’t heard Rowland say that, but he does plan on spending on building and infrastructure, saying it has worked after the past 8 recessions and could work now.



  1. *** He hasn’t seen anything yet, wait ’til Jan 2011. *** Questions for thought, is it true the Trooper’s Barracks is moving from Bpt? Also has Bpt been getting its fair share of the Weicker gaming deals & didn’t Bpt get put on notice by the state for not doing its property re- evaluations during the Ganim era in which the mil rates were in the 60s? Also in what year did the state take over the zoo & was Weicker still Governor? *** Inquiring minds would like to know? ***

    1. *** Let’s not be too quick to drum-roll Weicker’s contributions towards Bpt. ’til the facts are looked at on both sides of the political fence, good & bad! *** SOS ***

  2. Stumbled upon the following piece in the CT Post yesterday submitted by mayoral candidate John Gomes regarding the state of education in Bridgeport.

    www .ctpost.com/default/article/Don-t-settle-for-what-city-schools-are-providing-808862.php

    With Malloy heading to Hartford, it can’t be long before BOE Operations Director Ben Barnes follows. Who fills that job? Does the BOE go out and find the best possible person for it? Or do they just elevate Jorge Garcia, who’s as unqualified for the position he already has as anyone has ever been but since his mother and aunt are the Carrera sisters, that’s entirely plausible. I mean, what’s another appointment of a political crony to a high-paying job at the expense of our kids? Remember it was only a couple of years ago that Garcia was a BOE custodian!!! As Mr. Gomes points out in his piece, you have 6 board members who could not care less about the kids but answer to the puppet masters pulling their strings. Unless they and everyone else at the BOE are held accountable for the incomprehensible decisions they make, our children are doomed.

  3. The Answer is found in the middle, right?

    Governor Malloy might turn his razor-thin election into a near-mandate upon inauguration.

    Here’s how:

    Governor Malloy’s first move will be to chop, chop, chop the budget. He understands voters do not want a tax increase. Entrenched forces will see survival in new terms. He will impress his opponent’s supporters with his zeal and no-nonsense approach. Don’t be surprised to see swift action and a lot of unanimous votes.

    The budget is in arrears and now it’s “cleanup time.” In short order, he will address the needs of both sides culminating in a budgetary solution–the kind that’s escaped the General Assembly for too long. Nowadays in Hartford, a budget is a genuine result.

    Here’s the best part: it’s exactly what we need.

  4. Who will LEAD the Governor’s Bridgeport office? … no one. Who will occupy the office? … ask Don Calamari. Malloy is a political hack of the first order too entrenched with the Bridgeport goombah brigade. I expect nothing from this hump except another 4 years of nothing happening. Those of you silk-jacketed vote-the-party-line imbeciles will suffer no relief from high property taxes, high crime and not a wisp of hope of new business coming to this town.

  5. Lennie, you haven’t mentioned anything on the balance of power shift in the Connecticut House of Representative. After recounts in the 21st and 132nd house race, the Republicans gained (14) House seats (1) in the State Senate.
    What affect will this have on Malloy’s plans and on the Committee Chairmanships in the House of Rep.? Should Republicans in the house treat (block) Malloy the same way the Democrats treated (blocking everything) Jodi Rell?

    We all been hearing candidates say, “Jobs, jobs, jobs …”
    Multi-millions of dollars was spent on campaigns nationally. For years, I’ve noticed these pro-job candidates had been spending (most steal it) their campaign money out of town and out of state.
    A few days ago, I went to see my friend Lennie (No, not Grimaldi) Morano, at Sign Maintenance Service Co., 24 Wallace Street in Bridgeport, phone 203-336-1051. I had a small job for SMS Co., and while I waited, I noticed a political flier of one Bridgeport candidate running for mayor. Morano and other Bridgeport merchants have time and time again told me that they get little or no business from the clowns running around promising jobs. The flier was of John Gomes announced Democratic candidate for Mayor of Bridgeport. Lead by example, buy local, and most of all put your money where your mouth is. Kudos to John Gomes.

      1. Town Comm.
        Think you should check your facts. The Gomes daughter who received a scholarship for her excellence in science to Trumbull is still a Bpt student. All his kids are in Bpt schools.

        1. Not so. If you want to play semantics you are right but the school and the courses are in Trumbull High. I really don’t care it’s not a big thing but should be noted. BTW it’s an Agriculture program that gets Bpt kids into Trumbull High.

        2. As a parent of three children who went/go to Trumbull Agriscience and Biotechnology School, let me assure you that they attend the agri science program and Trumbull high full time. They are not considered Bridgeport students as they are not enrolled in a Bridgeport School, counted in the demographics, have test scores that are attributed to Bridgeport or anything else. It is unlike the Bridgeport Regional Vocational Aquaculture School which is a program and the students attended their home school for the core academics.
          Trumbull’s program the student is a full-time Trumbull High School student.

          1. I stand corrected, I do think it’s great that the program is available to gifted students. The way things are now the schools in Bpt are a disaster and I for one hope (know) Gomes will better them when he is mayor.

    1. Joel Gonzalez // Nov 12, 2010 at 11:49 am
      Responding to your posting

      I think you’re onto something …
      All we have to do now is find out if the person making the film about Ernie is the same one who made the “Accidental Mayor” about Fabrizi.

      Are these two guys going to be like some reality show where the two of them go over all their misdeeds in some sort of pre-determined maudlin display, with the expectation of re-election because the voting public whose trust has been so betrayed in Bridgeport will support them again with their vote?

      1. *** Taking a negative & turning it into a positive does not happen everyday nor to everybody. Though mistakes & poor judgment were made & consequences paid in different ways, it seems easier to focus on the bad & forget about any good, no? *** Stop hating for political reasons! ***

  6. *** Promises, promises in politics were made to be broken, no? Seeing is believing in real change but it takes city voters’ involvement in the issues that affect this city, not more complaints! *** Back to Basics. ***

  7. Is John Gomes running for Board of Ed or Mayor?
    For someone who bills himself as knowing so much, why doesn’t he know that he has no control over who the Superintendent is and how much they get paid?
    Somewhat like the Finch $600 rebate. Promise them anything and once elected admit you cannot do anything about it.
    And using the Mayor’s office as a bully pulpit is one thing, using it before elected is simply disingenuous.

    1. Grin Reaper // Nov 12, 2010 at 12:21 pm

      No control? Are you kidding? If you don’t see the control of the Mayor’s Office in the scenario that’s currently being played out inside the Bridgeport Board of Education, then you and John need to sit down and talk … it’s an answer that gets down to eight letters, SHERWOOD.

      This is the last name of the master money manipulator of City Hall, who looks over all the numbers on the General Fund side, on the Grants side and on the BOE side and then tells the Mayor how to blindside everyone except the favored few with budget take-aways and budget hide-aways.

      What in the world do you mean disingenuous? Every voter should know where John stands as a Mayoral candidate. Everyone who votes in Bridgeport should hear from a first-time candidate as well as a veteran incumbent with regard to City practices and policies, including the Board of Education.
      Perhaps that’s not what the Bpt Democratic Party Machine wants, but see where we are now under the direction of the Party Machine? Are you any better off than you were in November 2007?

      If you follow the money … you see that City Hall and the BOE are in a rather incestuous relationship that now spells continued troubles for the 23,000 public school students and their teachers …

      Come on Grin, come help us change this …

    1. ReallyFrustratedBptDemocrat // Nov 12, 2010 at 12:52 pm
      to your posting

      RFBD …
      A deli-owner who spent ten years with the Nestle Corporation in national and international sales, who has his Master’s Degree, who can converse in several languages, but most importantly, who has far more experience in City Government operations in Bridgeport than the previous deli-owner had when she occupied the Mayor’s Office.

      So my expectation is that we would go ten years going forward, not backward, with someone like John Gomes with the intelligence and capacity to begin administrating as Mayor the very FIRST DAY in office …

      You somehow remind me of the 80% of Bridgeport registered voters who don’t vote because they have no trust. I don’t blame them and I don’t blame you.

      After having worked with John for more than a year, sometimes 10 hours a day, I think he’s the real deal … And I think Bridgeport voters and taxpayers need someone like him a.s.a.p.

  8. Malloy will have to tackle the Unions directly with more than just simple concessions.
    Second, he will have to lay off workers throughout the state government system.
    Third, he has to convince Banks and Business that Bridgeport is a viable location to conduct business (New Marketing plan too). Give business a good reason to invest in Bridgeport, to conduct business here. The location and its access is fantastic for commerce throughout the northeast. Entice Blue Collar as well as White collar business by creating economic zones that have lower property taxes and provide energy credits. Give business a reason and a chance to hire LOCAL people to work in their companies in the city.
    Fourth, ALL School systems who receive 50% or more of their budget from the State MUST have a forensic audit done every four years. All the finding should be used to make the systems better and more accountable.
    If any additional income related tax increases are put on the table they should always have an expiration date. However, in recessions I don’t think that income tax increases stimulate consumer spending.


  9. Come on Carol.
    TC is right. A lot of fluff but still no substance from John Gomes.
    John Gomes “This is as incredible as it is unacceptable. Yes, even if the economic downturn in our country has made matters worse, we cannot continue to lay blame if we are not willing to take action and get involved.”
    What action is JG talking about???
    John Gomes “In schools across the city today, we learn that students do not have books, pencils, pens and paper while teacher are continually being pressured to take furloughs, to pay for their own classroom supplies, and to give back further to the system in order to meet a budget, while they are not given the adequate resources necessary to teach.”
    Where have you been John? This is the past 20 years. This is nothing new today.
    John Gomes “In Bridgeport, our children are living at a poverty level that is more than twice the state level. We have three times more children living in shelters, yet our education system can’t even give them a sense of comfort at school with a simple thing such as a book. With a dropout rate nearing 25 percent, how can we expect success? What is to be done about the number of schools that continue in their failure to meet standards, and have become “failing schools?”
    More questions no answers.
    Hey Mr Deli man, where’s the beef???

    1. I believe the man has a website where his platform and ideas are clearly laid out. Where are Caruso’s answers? Where are Newton’s answers? For that matter, where are Finch’s answers??? You complain on here all day long about the problems in this city but when someone tries to address them, you belittle and berate him. Does that make you feel better about yourself and the nothing you do to make a positive difference?

      1. Just checked John Gomes’ website. His platform issues are clearly listed. However, it is not clear what his plans or solutions are.

        Chris Caruso doesn’t have a platform. Oh … that’s right, it’s corruption. With this latest election fiasco, he’ll most likely get back on his soapbox and beat that dead horse again.

        Since when is Ernest Newton running for mayor? It is my understanding that he’s gearing up to take Don Clemons or Ed Gomes out.

  10. *** Just how long did Mr. Gomes hold this political job, “CitiStat” position that really has done nothing for concrete savings for the city? It like others are just made-up depts with no real power to benefit promised political cronies of the present admin. And if both of you were never let go, would he still be running & you endorsing him? Buildings are only as strong as their foundations, no? *** Real Platforms Needed in Bpt. ***

    1. If John and Carolanne were not fired and were allowed to implement even half of their recommendations, the City would be in much better shape and would not have an $8m debt. Finch ignored the cost-saving recommendations just like he ignored the report of his transition team. It is business as usual, and will continue to be so until someone rids the City of the political cronies protected by the DTC.

      1. *** The question once again was, would Mr. Gomes still be running for Mayor & Carolanne supporting him if not let go from this present admin? *** Every day on OIB countless of complaints are blogged about present & past failures in Bpt’s political leadership in general. Repeating these complaints is not a “change platform,” however having a plan on how to make the changes & what direction a candidate plans to take first if elected is much more convincing, no? Besides if you can’t take the political heat of questions now, then one should not enter the kitchen! *** We recognize the tune but can’t hear the words! ***

        1. Mojo
          I have gone to JohnMGomes.com and in my opinion he lays out a platform. You are trying to paint him as a person who is running due to a vendetta. I do not see this. The gentleman seems to be a highly intelligent and qualified candidate whom you seem to be trying to tear down. You are the one putting heat into the kitchen. As you always say


          Don’t hate, you look petty and foolish.

          1. *** M/H, I’ve been to the website & still see no real platform that would make me jump on the bandwagon of hopeful change so soon. Also your opinion is not gospel in the world of political candidates either. Voters must do their homework & ask the hard personal questions if there is going to be any type of positive change in Bpt and not fall for dreamed-up hypes by candidates! And yes I would say their is some hard feelings surrounding Mr. Gomes’ dismissal & his decision to run for office. However no one has questioned his commitment or intelligence, just the reality of his platform for change! *** Don’t assume, ’cause life isn’t fair but it’s still good! ***

  11. One man’s opinion

    The negatives are flowing here, but I look at this as at least John Gomes is trying to change things from the normal same sh*t different day. If Reaper and Mojo are so smart then they should run in 2011.

  12. I guess by the tone here that if you question anything Mr. Gomes says you are automatically associated with Mario Testa. That’s pure BS. All of the candidates when they finally emerge should have their feet held to the fire and they should all be asked the hard questions.
    Reading a blog does not give one a true measure of the person whose blog it is. Answering questions without a script gives one a better idea of the candidate(s).

    1. How’s Mario’s last two mayors done TC? One in jail and one disgraced into not running again. That leads us to Finch who forgot who got him there and went over to the dark side. No thanks, I’ll take my chances and my vote for CHANGE any day. I’d rather vote Republican than anyone your DTC endorses.

      1. Flushed Puppy My town committee? Gee I didn’t know it was mine. There are 90 people on the TC, I was not there when Ganim got the nomination but I did vote for him. He was doing great until he got ambitious and greedy then he went to hell in a handbasket. Fabrizi, well at first he inherited the job then did get the nomination. John could have been good but surrounded himself with many of the same characters that now surround Finch.
        There is enough blame to go around for what’s going on in this city now. The large portion of the blame can be placed squarely at the voters’ feet who keep voting for these same dolts no matter what they do. In this city you could put Rootie Kazootie on the ballot as a Democrat and he would be elected.

        1. Well said, TC. And from the historical pattern of mayoral elections in Bpt, the next election will bring about change, for sure. The next mayor of Bpt will be Republican or a minority.

  13. *** I’ve heard the tune “real Bpt change” before but haven’t seen the results yet. So I’m waiting to hear more from all candidates before I jump on any bandwagon prematurely, thank you! Signing off from the Red Rooster, good day! (wink) *** FORGETABOUTIT ***

    1. Chicken parm is dynamite at the Rooster, Mojo; you should try it. BTW, you aren’t one who says that if you aren’t the first minority mayor in Bpt no one will be type, are you?

    1. Ernie Newton, It’s a setup!!! Lennie is setting you up in the OIB webzine zone. He invites you and welcomes you to OIB, but somehow forgot to warn you and to introduce you to the OIB gang. You are the Ideal Political Persona to help Lennie in his sick plot. “OMG, Moses joins the OIB family …”

      Notice the “Moses.” Lennie thought that by luring you to OIB, you would “part the sea” on your way over. That’s when Lennie comes in–as the ocean is parted–he picks up as many clams as he can. He shares it with us at OIB and that’s when we start to “Pry Open the Juicy Stuff.”

      As for the “OMG,” it means: Oh My Gonzalez!
      How long before Joel “Speedy” Gonzalez and Ernie Newton clash?

  14. Hey Big Daddy, Mr. Newton, welcome to our family. My question for you, sir.

    Given your incarceration and rehabilitation, major time spent away from your family and loved ones, and the fact that a select few on this blog are pushing you to run for mayor, is this something you would be interested in?

    Given the strain on your family and loved ones that the years away put on them and the hammering you would get during the campaign, would you be willing to put them through that?

    Valid questions, right sir?

  15. I have not made a decision on what I plan on doing. Right now I’m enjoying being home with my family, but yes I’ve been asked by a lot of people in the city about running for office again. What office, I haven’t given much thought to.

    1. Let me help in your decision-making process. You are a thief. You have forfeited the public trust. You don’t deserve to be elected to a position of responsibility. You should move to Waterbury and play with Rowland.

      1. I’m glad my decision won’t be based on yahooy. If I decide to run and win I’ll make sure I come back and thank you for making the decision for me, yahooy boy.

  16. *** Times change allowing people to see things a bit differently and make comparisons concerning good & bad for the city of Bpt. Living in the past can only keep you from moving towards a better future! The present DTC is not representing the needs of the districts they blindly claim to represent @ the present. The ills of the current admin. is testament to that! ***Back to Basics. ***

  17. yahooy. Maybe you should stop being a little crybaby. The good thing is you can’t stop me from running for any office if I choose to do so. You probably don’t live in BPT anyway.

  18. Ernie Newton, welcome back, it’s good to see you in church and spending time with your family. America believes in redemption and second chances, you have paid your debt to society for what you did, now you have a second chance.

    It’s up to you now Ernie, best of luck and keep God first in your life.

  19. Thanks, Ron. What yahooy boy can’t accept or understand is my support with my people is something he can’t change. You know about that support, so my decision will be based on Family and God, and should I make that decision to run again, so be it. Thanks again.

  20. I also believe in second chances, but the heat is on and the anger is showing, stay with your family Ernie and enjoy the rest of your life. Yahooy is nothing compared to what will be coming your way if you run for mayor. Imagine if Ganim runs, it will be triple what would be thrown at you.

    1. Thanks Flushed Puppy, but I don’t base my life on what people say about me. Because people have a right to say what they like, so I don’t base what I do. You will always have people who like you and don’t like you, I can stand the heat.


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