Will Moore Be More? Plus: Stipend Relief, And Malloy Spanks Ned On Sick Leave

Update: Marilyn Moore is a pistol. A pol with passion. And I say pol in the best sense of the word (some pols don’t like being called pols), a bright feisty force you want on your side in a fight.

Moore, who came within an extra point (tired of football analogies?) of defeating Anthony Musto in a State Senate Dem primary in 2008, is a dear friend of Marian Evans who was dismissed as the city’s health director on Friday. Evans is president of the board of directors of the Witness Project of Connecticut, a support group for women sufferers of breast and cervical cancer www.witnessprojectct.org. She’s angry about the loss of her friend’s job and the loss of what she says was Evans’ work on behalf of the neediest of residents.

M&M has plenty to say about Evans losing her job but is reserving harsh public comments. Better to cool off, gather information and monitor the city’s next move as Mayor Bill Finch goes about hiring a new health director. In the short term William Quinn, recently retired after 21 years of service as New Haven’s health director, will fill the void. And it’s not an easy void to fill with all the health care issues that involve the state’s largest city.

What’s next for Evans? Does she have legal recourse that mirrors Ralph Jacobs, former civil service personnel director and Andrew Abate, former director of the Water Pollution Control Authority? Jacobs awaits approval from the City Council on a financial separation package worth in the range of $150,000.

It appears the Evans case is different. The health director’s appointment is made pursuant to state statute. Jacobs was protected by civil service and therefore could only be terminated for cause. Jacobs’ lawyer former Mayor Tom Bucci, a labor law specialist, claimed in court that there was no just cause. Jacobs and the city have agreed on a separation package. In the Abate case, although he wasn’t technically civil service, Bucci argued that under the charter Abate’s position created more than 20 years ago brought civil service protection, and again termination only for cause. The city and Abate settled on a separation package of roughly $60,000.

Evans was hired by former Mayor John Fabrizi in 2004 with a specified term of office under state statute, although Evans did not have a stated employment contract with the city. So it appears the same (for cause) protection applied to Jacobs did not apply to Evans once her term expired in 2008. Evans worked at the will of the mayor. And clearly a battle of wills took place between the mayor and Evans. This is the kind of issue that can get political activists cranked up. At the same time a mayor, this mayor at least, wants department heads that follow his agenda.

I asked Marilyn Moore what plans she has for future elected office. She wasn’t prepared to commit. If she runs for state senate again she’ll give Musto a heck of a fight. But could she be thinking about a mayoral run? She’d be, with the right message and organization, an attractive candidate. More on the mayoral dynamics on Tuesday.

Check This Out

If you want to find out what your state government is spending and where, go to www.ctsunlight.org. Just plop in a name to learn the salary of your favorite local or state pol or for that matter what any state public employee makes, and all sorts of other stuff.

Stipend Relief

Keila Torres has a piece in today’s Connecticut Post revealing donations that various City Council members made to Haiti relief agencies from their $9,000 stipend accounts. Council members do not receive a salary, but have nine grand available for expenses that sometimes end up as charitable donations. It’s a nice gesture by council members, but how about folks in Bridgeport that are hurting?

News release from Dan Malloy campaign


February 8, 2010 – Former Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy, a potential candidate for Governor, today reaffirmed his long-standing position that Connecticut employers should provide paid sick leave to their employees. Malloy said Ned Lamont, who in an interview published online today said he is against paid sick days, “doesn’t get it.”

“There are certain basic rights that should be afforded to any working person in Connecticut, and paid sick leave is certainly among them,” said Malloy. “It’s wrong that we would penalize workers – salaried or on hourly wage – for being ill. A person should not have to worry about missing a rent check or a mortgage payment because they catch the flu.”

“Ned doesn’t get it. Ned says he thinks ‘…we deal with sick leave just fine at the small-business level where I live.’ But that’s the problem: most people don’t live in that world. Ned’s statement shows just how disconnected he is from the concerns of the average working person in Connecticut.”

“Providing paid sick days to employees isn’t just the right and fair thing to do, it’s also good public policy,” continued Malloy. “Connecticut has tens of thousands of employees who work in food service and healthcare. Allowing those sick workers time to recuperate benefits the entire population. Additionally, allowing workers to take time to seek early treatment also means fewer trips to the emergency room for untreated illness – saving the state money.

“It’s not anti-business. It’s smart public policy, and it’s the right thing to do.”

In recent years both branches of Connecticut’s State Legislature have passed bills that would require employers to provide sick leave. Each bill required employers with 50 or more employees to provide sick leave, with paid sick time accruing at a rate of one hour for every 40 hours worked.

Malloy said he supports the legislation, and that there are “smart ways to improve the business climate in Connecticut that don’t involve jeopardizing people’s health.”

He concluded, “Connecticut needs to lower energy costs, provide smart tax incentives that reward businesses that create jobs, and fix our health care system to help small businesses lower their overhead. And we can do these things, and more. But we don’t have to force sick people to go to work.”



  1. Need some further definition around the subject of sick leave or sick pay.
    Does this mean I get 100% of pay indefinitely as long as I can provide evidence of medical attention for a sickness or injury? Or does it mean I get 100% of pay for a certain number of days, and then if qualified by tighter definitions of sickness or injury that keep me from my job, or any job, a lesser amount of compensation, perhaps 60-70% of basic compensation for a further period of time, perhaps 5 years or age 65? The latter definition more nearly fits the situation in the private sector where either short term and/or long term disability insurance in addition to Social Security Disability Income form most packages for non-job-related issues.
    However, sometimes the disability packages are combined with a retirement plan, which may not be fully funded anyway, creating additional stress on that promise.
    The Social Security D.I. program is underwater, meaning that more benefits are being paid than premium dollars taken in through payroll taxes. Most people do not know that and assume that since they are making a contribution to a system that it is sound. One of the problems is that once someone is on a system, especially for back and/or mental/nervous issues, it is infrequent that they find themselves well.
    If people were directed to pay for a certain expense portion of any benefit, perhaps they would be aware of the real cost and the systems could be made more sound.
    And at claim time there may be a non-taxable portion of income received for which you pay a premium. What happens when a blood pressure disability for an overweight policeman, for instance, is turned into a pension benefit by law? Is that benefit taxed as income?
    It is only when the more generous public benefits are analyzed and compared to the private sector, especially small businesses that are to bear the burden of job creation in our future economy, that the public may demand a scaling back of expensive public benefits.
    And perhaps someone can explain to me and others why “sick days” that I have accumulated during my working career but never needed to use because I was not sick can be turned into an extra bonus when I retire. (I am not arguing that such features have been negotiated and are part of contracts and expectations at the moment.) But what is the justification? Those plans would certainly cost less if there were no payoff at retirement, I am going to guess.
    So employees of public, big private, small private and self-employed, have at this subject. Being not healthy, not working and having no income is definitely a bad place to be. The street phrase for the condition is “disabled” and no one ever believes that it will happen to them until a sickness or injury crops up. Then there is a rush to find a way to get someone else to pay for a benefit if at all possible. What is fair in the big picture?

  2. Malloy like the administration in Washington thinks that small businesses have a bottomless pit of money to pay for these benefits. Start giving these benefits to small business employees and watch the small businesses move or close down.
    Just ask any municipality who has negotiated a certain amount of sick days into their contracts what happens. Generally and note I say generally before 1/2 the year is reached most employees have already used their sick days up.
    In the fortune 500 company I worked for we were given 5 sick days a year. They were added to your vacation hours. If you used them fine if not you could take them at the end of the year as vacation. If your illness exceeded the 5 days you had the option of using vacation time as sick time or the option to be out and receive no pay.

  3. Good afternoon,

    I believe Malloy is right and all businesses should provide a limited amount (2 – 5 days) of sick leave, providing their employees the time to recover without financial sacrifice.

    I watched Undercover Boss last night. I think the employees at Waste Management represented how most employees are committed to their jobs and are willing to go the extra mile for the organization. Most are not trying to game the system.

  4. The two people leaving comments since my original posting appear to be defining “sick leave” as two to five days and perhaps that it cannot be accumulated beyond a given work year. Many people consider sick leave or days to be a much longer period at 100% of pay.
    Review the statement by Malloy once again. He is talking about people missing mortgage payments, etc. and about recuperating. Is one week of pay while you are sick the difference between a mortgage getting paid or not? Should a person create a “rainy day” or emergency fund to handle such events? And does a five-day sick leave cover recuperation from meningitis or merely the common cold?
    Young people often don’t worry about events like this because they have a low rate of sickness except for “mental health” days. And the same feeling of immortality fuels the relatively large percentage of young persons without health insurance.
    Just think about this: Assume you run a small business and create a “sick day” policy for those in your firm and you look back at your records and see that one three-year employee has used all their sick days each year yet seems generally healthy, and another three-year employee has never used them even though each appears to maintain a similar level of health. Business slows and a layoff must occur. All other things being equal (and they rarely are) how do you feel about the two employees? Is trying to get a week of pay while not working an act that cheats the employer and may cause fellow employees to do the work of the person who is “sick” because of deadlines? Looking for your response.

  5. Here is my take on sick time; I am sick and tired of this debate. Now somebody pay me!
    If the state can dictate sick time, when will they decide how much vacation time businesses have to give out?
    If a small business has a vacation time policy that starts after one year on the job and just changes vacation to sick time and changes vacation time to starting after three years (when a second vacation week would be earned) are these same people going to complain and say that is unfair? What if they change it to four years?
    I have heard some people say that individuals in the food-handling industry posed a greater public health risk by not having sick time, why is 5 days the magic number?
    Why not unlimited (paid or unpaid) if public health is at risk?
    Let’s cut out the BS and get to the bottom line:
    1) It has nothing to do with people being sick. Five days is nothing.
    2) It has as much to do with paid time off but the state won’t dictate vacation time.
    3) If they impose 5 days, how long will it be before they up it to 10?
    4) If businesses are forced to do it, businesses will figure out some way of taking it back from the employee.
    5) It is for the most part a misplaced union gimmick. Unions have reached the point where they believe the more that they can get government to force things on business the less businesses will be afraid of unions.

    Dan Malloy is so out of touch with the real world and so in touch with government employees he probably thinks that most workers have Memorial Day off, Labor Day off, the day after Thanksgiving off, Columbus Day off, Presidents Day off, Martin Luther King Day off, etc., etc., etc., that what’s another 5 days? No one is really counting.

  6. Lennie, want an African American Bridgeport mayoral candidate? Look some “more!” Evette Brantley: Not a chance; Warren Blunt: You must have smoked one; Richard Bonney: I prefer the Easter Bunny; James Holloway: Get the hell out of my way; Getting hotter than a Bakery Lennie. Andre F. Baker, Jr. In a three-way Democratic primary between Bill Finch, Chris Caruso, and Andre F. Baker, Baker can come up ahead if Baker starts early and works the Hispanic and African American votes.

  7. I don’t think race should be made an issue. To avoid political incorrectness I suggest that Mayoral candidates wear clown suits at all campaign appearances, including debates.

  8. Palin was so harsh on Obama the other day but it seems like Palin Scribble Notes on Her Palm lol man I had to laugh that lady is crazy. What if she were president omg. I must say I’d rather have GWB than her.

  9. I’m now convinced that Iris plotted the downfall of WIC and handed it to Finch on a silver platter along with Dr. Evans. First she prevented her employees from implementing the changes recommended by the state WIC. Then she prohibited her employees from going to Dr. Evans for advice or help. Then to add insult to injury she helps Larry Osborne distribute termination letters to her employees. Some have documented her actions and are filing complaints with the appropriate state and federal agencies. I wish them luck.

  10. *** Ms. Moore, maybe running on the G.O.P. city’s ticket would be good but either way, does not have a chance. It looks like Caruso vs. Finch @ this time in the primaries with Fabrizi pulling an upset against whomever the Dem. endorsed candidate is in the general election; sort of like what Joe Lieberman did! As for Mr. Baker, he seems to just have too much on his work plate in general, especially with his 2, used to be 3 @ one time, funeral homes. The Bro. is just too busy & would probably clean house of all political puppets if elected, knowing Andre. He may forgive but he don’t forget! Bob Curwen, Carmen Lopez, Charles Coviello or anyone else should do a serious pre-election study before considering a serious run for Bpt. Mayor, unless they’re just making the attempt as a personal political bargaining chip for something in the near future. *** The city needs someone that seems or feels @ times to have all the answers to most of the city’s taxpayers’ questions. Or has contributed outstanding achievements in the past as an elected official or city worker that is still on record today! (WINK) Even a person that may just need the position as a stepping stone to bigger & better things so that they can really make a difference in the state. What men or women can OIB bloggers think of that would be able to step up to the plate of “politics” in Bpt. to meet that challenge & like the New Orleans “SAINTS”, march into the Conn. Post history archives? (Wink) I can think of maybe 4 off-hand: Yahooy, Speedy Gonzalez, Andy Fardy & Auden Grogins @ this time. How about you? *** FORGETABOUTIT ***


Leave a Reply