A Mayoral F-bomb Provokes Chivalry

Who says chivalry is a lost cause?

Not according to City Councilman Carlos Silva after Mayor Bill Finch blew a cork at the City Council meeting Monday night when he learned the legislative body would not approve a $10,000 federal grant that required a city match. Finch, the city’s resident Mr. Green Jeans who’s passionate about green initiatives, freaked when he learned the following Greenscaper Program item had been rejected …

EPA 2010 Greenscaper Grants Writer

“The city of Bridgeport is seeking financial assistance from the US Environmental Protection Agency to hire an intern under the direction of the Sustainability Director, to assist with the BGreen 2020 Initiative. The intern would create opportunities for additional rain garden and LID project implementation.”

An exasperated Finch called for a caucus, behind closed doors, where he unleashed an F-bomb rant in front of several female members of the city’s legislative body, wondering aloud how this grant could be rejected. East Side Councilman Carlos Silva didn’t want to hear Finch’s froth. He told the mayor to chill out, or as Carlos explains …

“The mayor blew up because we wouldn’t push a grant that he wanted. He said some things that were not so nice. I didn’t like the way he talked to us. I didn’t appreciate it.”

According to several council members in the room refined North End Councilwoman Michelle Lyons was upset about the mayor’s profanity. Understand that Michelle’s way of cursing is “darn.”

This all started when Finch learned that the council’s Economic and Community Development Committee refused to approve the grant money request out of concern that the city administration had not shown adequate evidence that the matching city funds were available. Gee, sounds like a responsible council act. Several council members wonder why the mayor would be so cranked up over a $10,000 matching grant. Is something going on they don’t know?

Many of the council members told the mayor to talk to your staff about this, not us. Finch’s Chief of Staff Adam Wood piped in that there had been a communication gap between himself and the council. In time things calmed down.

Ah, just another session at the Monday Night Fights.



  1. Lennie,
    It was unbelievable. When the mayor flew off the handle like he did I was thinking we were talking big bucks. When I found out it was 10 grand, well my head is still shaking. A $10,000 grant that the city had to match dollar for dollar to hire some lackey intern.
    I don’t know if he had promised this job to someone already, if he was flipping out because it is GREEN or if he is just feeling too much heat lately but I have NEVER seen a mayor go bonkers like this over $10,000.

  2. Oh, and he had implied that he was begging EPA in Boston and DC for this grant and he was embarrassed by the council’s actions.
    I’d be embarrassed if I were the mayor of the state’s largest city begging DC for $10,000.

  3. And he was telling us how this grant was going to provide jobs for poor people? Jobs?
    He told us he had people pulling on his suits all day long begging him for jobs. Telling him how they were going to go into foreclosure. All this over a $20,000 internship?

  4. No doubt in my mind the job was promised to a Finch or Mario friend or relative. Or maybe another one of Ralph Ford’s people. Finch is starting to go off the deep end. So sad. See ya … wouldn’t wanna be ya …

  5. I don’t know what’s more embarrassing … the mayor throwing a temper tantrum or somebody still offended by the F word. For the first, very unprofessional, and the second, why go into politics if you are that naive that the F word isn’t commonly used.

    1. Keep in mind rebel that North End Councilwoman Michelle Lyons is a Christian. There are times when and places where the “F” word should not be used. Especially when one opens the meetings with a prayer.

  6. I hear they are making provisions for a new crony job at the health dept, this after 14 layoffs. TC you are wrong they have big balls, I mean big big balls not swedish balls, I mean beach balls.

    1. Don’t know where you got your information from. Finch is slowly closing the Health Dept and outsourcing all the programs. Besides, he wouldn’t put one of his political cronies over in that sick building. His cronies like nice plush offices at the annex.

    2. bpt guy I heard a similar rumor but its not about a new job. The city is holding off on the LIUNA bumping letters because a laid-off worker at the health dept is bumping one of the political cronies. OOOPS, how did that happen? Uncle Mario is upset. Fix it he says or heads will roll.

  7. The internship will go to either one of Alana’s kid’s friends or maybe one of CC’s stepchildren since the checkpoints at beach are closed for the season.

  8. At the risk of offending Michelle Lyons–what the F-bomb!!! Finch just laid off a grantswriter and now he wants to hire a greenscaper grantswriter intern? Insult to injury. This is union-busting at its best. Bob Walsh and Carlos Silva and anyone else with some balls needs to stop these senseless layoffs of qualified union employees NOW before the entire city is destroyed.

    1. Use the grant money to pay the grantswriter you just laid off. Why is there no money for her salary yet they find a $10,000 match? Union members beware. Your mayor is full of shit.

  9. Hey, Lennie! When you’ve got some time, go to 1450 Barnum Avenue and find the location that is being prepared as the new facility where the WIC Progran (Women Infant and Children), is going to be run from. Make sure you check out the luxurious office for the program director. Then I want you to turn on the Flat Screen Television and see if it has HBO. OIB!

      1. OK Joel, what do you know? Who is the WIC program director and who owns the property?

        Are Caruso and Gomes really running for mayor in less than a year? Honestly? Because their silence on all of these issues has been deafening.

        1. city hall smoker // Dec 8, 2010 at 7:12 am
          Responding to your posting

          You’re kidding, right?
          Caruso and Gomes need to do what? Issue a statement on Bill Finch’s inappropriate behavior?
          I think you’ll find these two guys would rather address issues that can be remediated.

  10. Of course Finch promised that job to someone. Just as he continues to hire new people while laying off union members with seniority. He is a disgrace to the ‘port.

  11. “Hire an intern under the direction of the Sustainability Director, to assist with the Green 2020 Initiative. The intern would create opportunities for additional Rain Garden and LID project implementation.”
    Someone please tell me what the F the rain garden program is. Someone please tell me what the LID program is.
    Why the hell do we have a Sustainability Director? This job is pure and utter bullshit. Ted Grabarz must have a powerful person behind him on this one. This is definitely a job that should be eliminated.
    Will one of the mayor’s advisers including the ones in Hartford, please please tell this moron to put away his pie-in-the-sky greening of Bridgeport especially while we are laying off dedicated employees?
    If you fire the Sustainability Director you can take that salary of $80K+ and put it towards the deficit. Do the same with the following:
    $10,000 for rain program intern
    $100,000 for new recycling containers 5,000 of them
    $15,000 to paint new mad Vacs Green
    $25,000 paid to outside firm for Xmas lights
    $80,000 salary for Sustainability Director
    Total $230,000, almost what they are seeking from LIUNA. Adam you see it can be done without hurting the dedicated employees. I will volunteer to come in and make the cuts necessary to reach the $8 million and I will do it without cutting the nuts and bolts workers making $30K.

  12. TC, I agree with you 100%! But there are other “Green” positions that can be eliminated also without hurting the core functions of city hall. How much does Ms. Miro and her staff get paid? Hmmm.

  13. Are you kidding me? The guy uses the F word and this is a story? Are we children? We are talking about Bridgeport right? Whenever I’m down there and I’m at a light next to a car blasting some sort of rap music it’s every other word. People are surprised that an angry Mayor used one … in front of women no less … where did I put my tar and feathers?


    Do I really need to remind people that these are just words? The only power they have are the ones YOU CHOOSE to give them.

    Look I have no respect for Finch because of the shenanigans that he pulled on election day … he should have lost his job for that, but this being an issue takes the cake … Aren’t there more important and more controversial things to deal with than a Mayor of a city that used the F-bomb? I understand the mail was late yesterday … let’s deal with that controversy.

    As for what he’s upset about, as someone earlier posted, it’s probably a favor that is being called in and now he has to go and explain it.

    What an embarrassment Bridgeport is …

    1. Yes, there are more important and more controversial things to deal with than a Mayor of a city that used the F-bomb.

      The problem is the CT Post and the likes of Lennie Grimaldi are too “FUCKING” lazy and afraid to get off their asses and report what is important and potentially controversial. Ooops! Did I drop an F-bomb?

  14. The incident involving the mayor happened in a CAUCUS of council Democrats.They weren’t even on the floor of Common Council.

    Given that not much that Dems talk about in private ever stays secret long, it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that details came oozing out. Bridgeport Democrats cursing in a caucus doesn’t strike me as news.

    Common Council members, and by extension the mayor, cussing in a public meeting, is worthy of mention to show how ticked off they are about something.

    Now, if someone came back and accused the mayor of being grammatically correct in the usage and tense while cussing, I suppose that might be news.

    But when you get right down to it, you are left with only one question:

    “What is this, F@&^+%g Fairfield?”

  15. OK, already! So Finch dropped the F-bomb in a caucus meeting.

    Poor taste? Probably

    Criminal? Hardly.

    It’s difficult for me to get too excited about it. I–and others–have heard mayors over the years drop the F-Bomb and a few other major nuke words in the mayoral office, in the hallways of City Hall, at Town Committee meetings, on street corners and on the phone. I must admit, I’ve never heard that kind of language use in a house of worship, but I’ve heard it used about the worshipers! I remember one mayor with a certain urban eloquence go off on the telephone against a sitting judge (not very politic and also definitely not illegal).

    So let’s all say “tsk tsk” and move on to an issue.

    All together now, “TSK TSK!”

    Now, don’t we all feel better?

  16. The next thing you know there will be criticism of a politician for calling up another politician on the telephone and chewing them out for the way they vote.

  17. You know where this is headed, enlightened, don’t you?

    It’s going full steam ahead onto a full and complete understanding of the phrase “Only in Bridgeport!”

    (Yo, Leonard! How’s that for a segue into a book plug?)

  18. *** It’s not the first time the F-bomb has been dropped @ a city council meeting or caucus! Sometimes it tends to wake people up, no? Lord knows some of these council members need waking up @ times and the present admin. has done far worse than drop a naughty word or two! *** SOS ***

  19. Enlightened and Gilmore are full of it. Finch couldn’t wait to release a press statement (oh, this is so terrible) when Bob Walsh left a nasty voice message on the phone of a council member. Why is bird brain puking over a small grant? Something’s going on. Blech!

  20. My favorite Only in Bridgeport moment, Common Council division, involves the one-and-only Ed Gomes, the estimable alderman from Whiskey Hill in the 136th District, now fawned-over state senator. Council found itself in a knotted debate in 1984 about the virtues or not of bilingual education in the schools.

    Democrats and Republicans, white, black and brown, were tangling with each other while the ever-(im)patient Mayor Leonard S. Paoletta was coordinating the hostilities, tapping his fingers, face contorted, neck-veins bulging.

    Like a modern-day Alexander the Great, Alderman Gomes cut the knot after two hours of baloney back and forth: “Fuck this shit! We wouldn’t be having this goddamn debate if everybody just learned fuckin’ English.”

    That cleaned out the stables, so to speak.

    “… What the hell are we doin’ debatin’ this shit anyway …”

    The white and black aldermen couldn’t believe it. The Puerto Rican aldermen were speechless. Even the conservative Italian guys looked up in shock, even though a couple of them were kinda nodding their heads in agreement and trying to stop themselves from doing it. But hey, if the black guy was saying it …

    A reporter in the chamber was howling laughing (OK me). Another buried her head into her notebook. Then we had to figure out just how the hell we was going to put this in the morning Telegram.

    It was worth the effort to stretch the language.

    And that was the end of that goddamn debate that damn night.

    Thanks Ed. It was my favorite moment covering Common Council.

    Gomes cut through all the nonsense. No one wanted to make a decision, but everyone was being too politically correct, or afraid of being politically incorrect, to say it.

    1. And then there was the time Ed got into a shouting match with an alderman who he referred to as “the Pillsbury Doughboy.” HINT: He too is a member of the General Assembly.

    1. Oh, James … It’s a lot more fun when you have to guess the names of the offending parties … but times change … I suppose if we really wanted to flame some sensitive ears we could discuss old-time newsroom word battles … Like the time we discovered cigars weren’t covered by the new no-cigarette policy … or getting the beer bottles out after Hurricane Gloria before a certain editor arrived for the night shift … and then there was the most foul daytime editor who’d proclaim a certain party needed a good … well, something.

      And yet we survived, twisted as we are, but surviving!

  21. The point of all these postings is not so much that the mayor used the F-word but WHY he used the F-word. Because he is obviously trying to create another political patronage job at the same time he is sanctioning the bloodbath of union workers. And for ONCE, some council members actually showed some balls and said no. That (patronage job) is why I am angry Carolanne, and that is what Gomes and Caruso should be shouting about.

  22. CHS you hit the nail on the head. This had very, very little to do with the F-word. As you can see the former reporters for that lesser-known rag the Bridgeport Post did not get that.

  23. The Mayor was out of line. There is no need to go crazy. It is not productive and makes the city look bad. If he were going to go crazy on anyone, it should have been his staff for being unprepared to go before the committee. The Council asks the SAME questions every time a grant comes before them. Question number one is always where are we getting the match funding from–as it should be. If staff can’t answer that question, then the project should be tabled until they can. Not good.


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