Bill Clinton, Bill Curry, And My Presidential Nightmare, Plus: Regional Opportunities

Our discussion in the prior post about the impact of presidential visits had me thinking (always a confusing thing) back to 1994, a nutty year for me.

I managed Joe Ganim’s gubernatorial bid that year. We were cash rich but delegate poor. Those days you couldn’t wage a primary for governor without the support of 20 percent of the party insiders. No direct primaries, through registered voter signatures, like you have today. The young mayor, only in his second term, hadn’t been around long enough to build a statewide profile. We’d walk into town committee meetings in Litchfield and Tolland counties and the locals would look at us like we were from Mars.

One week before the Democratic Party convention I persuaded Joe to get out of the race and endorse the Democratic front runner for the party endorsement, State Senator John Larson, a good guy now in Congress. Joe wanted to be the candidate for lieutenant governor as a consolation, and I thought endorsing Larson was his best chance. Joe’s Bridgeport profile as a young mayor that pulled the city out of bankruptcy court and attacked crime by hiring 100 new cops would add spice to the ticket.

The day of the convention sucked. I had no juice with the Hartford-based party moguls (get away from me boy, you bother me) such as State Senator William DiBella whose shock of white hair and narrow facial features looked like he was straight out of a wax museum. Billy had that undertaker look about him. The bosses wanted an Italian on the ticket. Jesus, I said, Joe’s mother’s Italian. No, Leonard, they said, we want an Italian-sounding name.

In the hours prior to the lieutenant governor selection by Larson, Waterbury Mayor Ed Bergin and Hartford Mayor Mike Peters (God rest his soul) were getting absolutely hammered at a bar inside the Hartford Civic Center. I threw down a couple myself as we awaited word, but Bergin and Peters were practically going shot for shot.

So the call finally came. About 50 of the state party elite (I was Joe’s campaign manager so they let me in) crowded into a banquet room inside the Hartford Civic Center where Larson, who in fact had the endorsement locked up, announced that it was time to embrace State Rep. Rich Balducci, who also had been a candidate for governor, as his running mate. Everyone applauded politely. I thought it sucked. Rich, a fun guy, emerged from behind the curtain to proclaim that he would be an independent running mate. What did that mean?

Bridgeport Democratic Town Chair Mario Testa isn’t the kind of guy that will take shit. “Mr. Balducci,” he says, “are you supporting Larson or not?” Balducci paused. Well, he restated, I’m going to be an independent running mate.

“What the fuck is going on around here!” Bergin and Peters scream. Political madness consumed the room. Yelling, name calling, bewilderment. Hadn’t these guys talked this out? Bergin and Peters walk up to Larson … you couldn’t settle this so we will. Bergin and Peters grabbed Joe and New Haven Mayor John DeStefano, all the mayors huddled. “Joe, do you want the second spot?”


And that was it. Bergin and Peters peeled off, walked up to Larson and said Joe’s the candidate for lieutenant governor. Larson said okay. If Mario doesn’t speak up, maybe if Bergin and Peters hadn’t stopped for a lube job, Balducci’s the guy. Little Joe, screamed the Sunday headlines, shocks the state. But a strange thing happened on the way to the general election against Republican John Rowland. Larson got his ass kicked by State Comptroller Bill Curry in a primary.

So the odd couple of politics, Joe Ganim, who supported a casino in Bridgeport, and Bill Curry, who did not, were thrown together because Curry challenged Larson without a running mate. The whole thing was surreal. Rowland, the Republican, supported a casino. Joe had more in common with Rowland than Curry. (Okay, save your wisecracks.)

Curry wouldn’t step foot in Bridgeport during the campaign. He felt it was better to stay away from a city that was rabidly pro casino. Curry was a hard sell in Bridgeport. Many Park City pols didn’t like him. (I’ll let town committee weigh in on this.) Curry had forced out Eddie Caldwell of Bridgeport as state comptroller. Not only had he kneecapped one of the elder statesman of the party, Curry was also anti-casino. I asked Curry to give me something to sell to city voters, a waterfront development proposal, something as governor he’d do for Bridgeport. Oh, he said, they’ll like my property tax relief proposal. Good grief, these voters wanted jobs. Anyone can talk about property tax relief.

So one day I get a call from Curry’s camp and they said we have good news and bad news. The good news is President Clinton’s coming to Bridgeport to support the ticket. The bad news, you’re organizing it. Great, Secret Service, presidential advance people, security issues, portable toilets. What a pain in the ass. At the time Clinton’s poll numbers were so beleaguered that a leper colony didn’t want him. But Bridgeport could be a receptive place for him, and better yet Curry was cash poor and needed Clinton’s profile to raise money.

Clinton flew into Sikorsky Memorial Airport on Marine 1 and for him it was nirvana, thousands of people showed up. Clinton had trouble filling a match box for most of his events. He was thrilled and Hillary came along for the ride. Next stop was the Holiday Inn ballroom downtown and it was jammed, including a private reception for big-money donors. Bill and Hillary charmed the city for a day. I was pooped.

Come November, Rowland becomes governor with less than 40 percent of the vote in a field that included Curry and Lowell Weicker’s Lieutenant Governor Eunice Groark.

Months pass and I wasn’t even thinking about Clinton’s visit. Holiday Inn owner Ernie Trefz calls me one day. Lennie, the Curry campaign stiffed us on the bill.

Eeeeeeeee! That was my one and only presidential event.

Special note: condolences to OIB friend Derek Brown, The Bridgeport Kid, whose mom passed away on Thursday.

News release from House Speaker Chris Donovon


State Reps. Auden Grogins (D-Bridgeport), Jack Hennessy (D-Bridgeport), Andres Ayala (D-Bridgeport) and Don Clemons (D-Bridgeport) have been named by House Speaker Christopher G. Donovan (D-Meriden) and House Majority Leader Denise Merrill (D-Mansfield) to a new a commission that will seek to identify opportunities for more regional collaborations designed to create efficiencies and save money for municipalities. The Blue Ribbon Commission on Municipal Opportunities and Regional Efficiencies (MORE) will begin its work next Tuesday, January 19th with the goal of recommending legislation during the 2010 session.

“We can be doing more with less,” Speaker Donovan said. “These dedicated members of the Bridgeport Delegation and MORE will help us find these new ways to help our cities and towns. I am confident we can bring about real property tax reform by regionalizing certain activities that can both save money and improve the economic competitiveness of our state.”

“We’ve talked for a long time about restructuring government at all levels across the state,” said Rep. Merrill. “Now we’re going to take action. I’m excited about the chance to bring some relief to our cities and towns and to bring about the kind of structural change that can deliver benefits for years to come.”

The MORE Commission will be comprised of 45 Democratic members of the House of Representatives and representatives of municipalities, regional organizations, education, business, unions and non-profits.

The Commission will look at a wide spectrum of issues and opportunities facing municipalities: multi-town collaboratives, Board of Education functions, regionally-based organizations, collective bargaining, mandates, revenue sources, health care, and state grants. In each of these areas, commission subcommittees will investigate costs, benefits, resources, legal obstacles and opportunities, potential savings, consolidation, and results-based accountability (RBA) methods for tracking performance.

Nice to have a huge polling lead. From Richard Blumenthal:

The following is a statement from Attorney General Richard Blumenthal on today’s release of the results of the latest Q-Poll:

“I am pleased that Connecticut residents consider me a worthy Senate candidate, but polls don’t vote, people do–and the only vote that counts is the one on Election Day. This campaign will be exciting and hard fought, and I fully expect that the polls will tighten as the race goes on. I plan to continue what I’ve done for the last 20 years–fighting hard for the people of Connecticut, listening to their ideas, earning their trust and, ultimately, continuing my public service.

“I take nothing for granted, and I will work like an underdog.”

From Mayor Finch

Mayor Finch Calls Roundtable Meeting to Support Relief Efforts in Haiti

WHAT: Mayor Bill Finch, along with representatives from the City’s Haitian community, and American Red Cross, Save the Children and other nongovernmental agencies that are assisting in the Haiti earthquake relief effort, will meet on Friday, Jan. 15 to rally relief efforts in the Bridgeport community.

“On behalf of the people of the city of Bridgeport, I extend my deepest sympathy to the families affected by this week’s tragic earthquake in Haiti. Our city has a large and growing Haitian community, and we share a profound concern for those who were injured or lost.

“I urge all residents to contribute what they can to the Haiti relief services by accessing President Obama and the White House staff are supporting international relief efforts, but individuals can donate immediately by using the links on the President’s site.

“I ask everyone to keep the residents of Haiti, their families and their friends in our thoughts and prayers during this most difficult time,” said Mayor Finch.

WHO: Mayor Finch, City employees, Pierre D’Haiti, representatives from the American Red Cross and Save the Children.

WHERE: Mayor’s Conference Room, City Hall Annex, 999 Broad St., Bridgeport, CT

WHEN: Friday, January 15, 10:30 a.m.

From Jim Himes

Himes Expresses Condolences to Victims of Earthquake in Haiti, Provides Information on Relief Effort

WASHINGTON, DC—Congressman Jim Himes (CT-4) released the following statement and information regarding the earthquake in Haiti.

“My thoughts and prayers are with the people of Haiti and the thousands of my constituents who have family members in the region. This is an unimaginably devastating time in an already challenging environment, and we are committed to providing the assistance necessary to save and improve as many lives as possible.”

With the situation on the ground changing frequently, the best source of information about family members in Haiti is through the State Department Operations Center. Americans seeking information about missing family members in Haiti should call 1-888-407-4747 or visit the State Department website.

In response to the tragedy, Congressman Himes has also signed onto a proposal that will grant Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Haitians currently in the United States. TPS can be granted to nationals from a country where “there has been an earthquake, flood, drought, epidemic, or other environmental disaster … resulting in a substantial, but temporary disruption of living conditions in the area affected.” Granting TPS status will help Haitian individuals work legally in the U.S. and send money back to family members affected by the crisis. Over time, these remittances from individuals often become more significant than foreign aid sent by governments.

Individuals and organizations wishing to assist the relief effort in Haiti are encouraged to make monetary donations as most organizations do not yet have the capacity to handle volunteers or in-kind contributions. Suggested methods of donations include:

· Text HAITI to 90999 to donate $10 to the Red Cross charged through your cell phone bill.

· Visit to make a donation to Save the Children’s on-the-ground relief effort in Haiti.

· Visit to make a donation to AmeriCares’ medical relief effort.

· Visit  to donate online to the Red Cross Haitian relief effort.

· Visit for a list of NGOs and instructions on how to help.

More from the mayor

Mayor Joins Charter Oak Challenge Scholars at Annual Reunion

Mayor Bill Finch joins Bridgeport's Charter Oak Challenge Scholars at their annual January reunion held recently at the Holiday Inn.

Mayor Bill Finch joined scholars from the Charter Oak Challenge Scholarship program at their recent reunion held at the Holiday Inn. Every January, this group of Bridgeport high school students, who are either beginning their college career or former scholars who are returning as mentors and graduate students, gather to renew old friendships.

The Charter Oak Scholarship is awarded by the Charter Oak Challenge Foundation founded by Andy Boas. The Bridgeport Public Education Fund manages the program. Each scholar receives a $10,000 scholarship, a laptop and is paired with an adult mentor.

Read more about the Charter Oak Challenge Foundation.

$150K to be Awarded in Third Round of Advancing Capacity Together FundingMayor Bill Finch and local partners in the Advancing Capacity Together (ACT) funding program will award the third round of funding to 14 area nonprofits on Friday, Jan. 15 during an event at City Hall Annex.The grants, totaling $150,000, will be used to build organizational capacity for local agencies serving Bridgeport’s homeless and at-risk population. “Advancing Capacity Together will enable these 14 nonprofits agencies to obtain the staff, training and infrastructure they need to help Bridgeport’s homeless and at-risk residents find shelter and well-being,” said Mayor Finch. “This program is instrumental in connecting grassroots organizations with federal funding that, without the help of the City and our partners, they would not be able to obtain.”The following agencies will receive grants ranging from $8,000 to $19,990: Applied Behavioral Rehabilitation Institute, Inc., Homes for the Brave; Area Congregations Together, Inc., Spooner House; Ark of Christ Ministries International; Burroughs Community Center, Inc.; Children in Placement, Inc.; Family ReEntry, Inc.; Greater Bridgeport Community Outreach for Economic Empowerment, Inc.; Healing Tree Economic Development, Inc., King’s Pantry; Helping Hand Center, Inc.; Jewish Center for Community Services, Inc., Community Closet; Spirit Led Ministries; The McGivney Community Center, Inc.; Universal Church of God Pantry; Women for Change, Inc.
Heart Gallery
Make a Home for Kids Who Don’t Have One of Their Own
Andrew--Photo by Cynthia Lang

Precious newborn Andrew is looking for a family who will be committed to helping him overcome hurdles he will face in life. This sweet little boy of Asian descent is legally free for adoption and needs a very special family to call his own. Andrew loves being cuddled, and a soft touch and a gentle voice eases him into contentment.

Due to complications prior to his birth, Andrew was born paralyzed from the chest down. Prospective adoptive families do not need a medical background or experience, but will need dedication and commitment to attend training, and be willing to learn how to care for him.

An ideal family would be able to provide him with a non-smoking, stay at home parent who has the time and energy to devote to working with numerous medical providers, as well as be on hand to take him to doctor’s appointments. Strong organizational and communication skills will be imperative for a parent to manage and advocate for all of his needs.

Although Andrew is not ready to be discharged from the hospital today, he is waiting for his family to come and learn about him. Love and comfort from a family would help Andrew overcome some obstacles and allow him to flourish.
For more information about Andrew please contact:
Katie Churchill
Office of Foster Care and Adoption Services,
Department of Children and Families,
505 Hudson Street,
Hartford, CT 06106
(860)550-6307 or 1-800-842-6348 or

For more information about the Heart Gallery, click here.

Give a shelter animal a good home – adopt a cat or dog!
Looking for a pet cat or dog? Then, please consider adopting one of the many cats, kittens and dogs available at Bridgeport Animal Control.

Adopting an animal who needs a home is easy. Applications are available at the Bridgeport Animal Control facility at 236 Evergreen St. Be sure to bring a state identification card or Driver’s License, and cash or check only for the adoption fee ($50 for intact animals and $5 for previously spayed/neutered animals).

If you’re a renter, please bring a notarized letter from your landlord giving you permission to house a pet; homeowners should bring a tax bill or mortgage bill to show proof of ownership. For more information on animal adoption, call Bridgeport Animal Control at 203.576.7727.

For more information log on to



  1. Thank you Obama for the support of Haitians. My heart goes out to everyone who was affected by this disaster. I know many Haitian people and they are some of the nicest people you will meet. I have many Haitian friends that I went to middle school and went to high school with them and trust me it has had a big impact on their community. I am asking everyone to donate even if it’s just a dollar.

    1. This from this morning’s Connecticut Post:

      Thumbs down to the empty-headed, outlandish remarks of doddering televangelist Pat Robertson and right-wing wingnut Rush Limbaugh for their bizarre rants in the wake of the earthquake in Haiti. Robertson, a self-anointed “man of God,” surveyed the crushed people of Haiti and swiftly determined that their suffering was their own damn fault. It seems that long ago in the cosmos Robertson inhabits, the Haitians made a pact with the devil, who has come calling. It’s tempting to write Robertson off as a lone crackpot, but the sad truth is he is but the latest in a long line of “men of God” to peddle such drivel. See: “Falwell, 9/11,” and “Hagee, Katrina.” To try to understand the goings-on inside their heads would mean peering into a void we want no part of. Which brings us to that other pillar of compassion: Rush. Not only did Limbaugh rail against sending aid to Haiti, the only real use he had for the Biblically proportioned anguish was to package it as yet another piece of ammo to fire at President Obama. The disaster, Limbaugh said, “will play right into Obama’s hands. He’s humanitarian, compassionate. They’ll use this to burnish their, shall we say, ‘credibility’ with the black community — in the both light-skinned and dark-skinned black community in this country. … That’s why he couldn’t wait to get out there, could not wait to get out there.”

        1. This just posted at

          Comments from the controversial Rev. Pat Robertson that Haiti suffered from a devastating earthquake because of its “pact with the devil” continue to stir curiosity and outrage.

          The storyline continues to sit near the top of Google trends within the United States–and it’s even drawing interest across borders.

          “It took about five nanoseconds for evangelical Pat Robertson’s video verdict on the causes of the Haiti earthquake to start making the rounds in France,” Robert Marquand reports from Paris for the Christian Science Monitor.

          While the French enjoy “chuckles of disbelief” over the folklore surrounding their former colony, a detailed explanation of the origins of Robertson’s comments is offered at political blog As the Hotsheet noted yesterday, Robertson’s remarks have their roots in Haitian religious mythology.

          “His comments come straight out of a blend of theology and history that, at the grassroots, pervades Haiti’s political discourse,” Robert Taber, a doctoral candidate in Caribbean History at the University of Florida, wrote at FiveThirtyEight.

          He adds a positive spin to Robertson’s remarks, writing, “The most generous reading of Rev. Robertson’s statement is one of searching for positive direction and building anew. Port-au-Prince last rose out of the rubble in 1770, twenty-one years before the people of Haiti began the West’s only successful slave revolt. We need to begin the discussion of how this rebuilding can match the glory of that remarkable achievement.”

          Raymond Joseph, Haitian ambassador to the U.S., added more historical context to the discussion last night, pointing out that Haiti’s independence movement facilitated the Louisiana Purchase in the United States and lead to the liberation of Latin American states.

          He blasted Robertson’s comments, concluding, “So, what pact the Haitians ‘made with the devil’ has helped the U.S. become what it is.”

          Many other commentators continued to criticize Robertson. Huffington Post founder Arianna Huffington remarked yesterday that, “For anybody of faith, even if you’re not God, Pat Robertson is giving religion a terribly bad name, again and again.”

          Jim Wallis, a prominent progressive Christian leader, gave a similar assessment: “As a Christian leader, I have had to spend too much of my time trying to overcome an image of Christianity that was created by the likes of Pat Robertson,” he wrote. “When evil strikes, it’s easy to ask, where is God. The answer: God is suffering in the midst of the evil with those who are suffering.”

  2. Lennie it was strange you mentioned Ed Caldwell this morning. Ed has not been feeling well of late. I am having breakfast with him today.
    Ed was and is a great friend of Bridgeport. When Ed was in Hartford Bridgeport never got screwed and always got its fair share from state government. Ed had a lot to do with the rise of the late John Guman who was a close friend of Ed’s.
    I was at the convention when Ed got blindsided by those close to him. The chief architect of this backdoor move was Joe Grabarz a close friend of Ed’s and a person Ed took under his wing. Ed was more devastated by this betrayal than he was by the lost endorsement. There was a specific reason why Curry did not work Bridgeport and I just described it. Hey Joe remember the conversation we had on the steps of the capital?

  3. Lennie, here is another look at the Democratic Party convention that Saturday.

    I attended that convention with a guest pass from Mario Testa and I was challenged by a number of friends from the Hartford delegation who were really pissed off by Joe trying to bully himself into the election as the boy wonder and the savior. They wanted no part of Joe and they kept asking me what had Joe done for blacks in Bridgeport as far as polices, decisions and jobs. Early that afternoon after lunch a number of black delegates called for a meeting of blacks that was held in one of the bars that was closed but they allowed them to have the meeting in their dining area. About 30 blacks attended they were from Bridgeport, (Alvin Penn & Ernie Newton were not invited but Rev. Vernon Thompson did attend a big Joe supporter) and the issue was who would be the best candidates for urban issues.

    Bill Curry Curry had won in a statewide election as state comptroller plus Curry had strong labor support. State Rep. Rich Balducci was a leader in the State House and State Senator John Larsen had a very strong relationship with the leadership and the people of Hartford plus he was also in the leadership in the State Senate. Joe had none of those leadership standards, they knew that Gov. Lowell Weicker had bailed out Bridgeport and not Joe. But the other big issue was that blacks could only have one spot on a statewide ticket and that was the position of the State Treasurer and that was because of the late Hank Parker out of New Haven. Now you have this young inexperience with very little time as mayor demanding that he be placed on the statewide ticket, well that didn’t sit well.

    1. Ron, Joe was ambitious for sure. Yes, Curry had strong liberal credentials and he was a force factor in a primary. His problem was appealing to independents in a general election, something Ned Lamont must do to become governor.

    1. Not John Rowland. Or Joe Ganim. Maybe a year later Ganim and Curry were at an event at the hotel. Joe grabbed me with Curry at his side. Lennie, can you talk to Ernie to help out Bill? So I talked to Ernie. It was one of those I’ll see what I can do conversations. To this day don’t know how, or if, it was cleaned up.

  4. Probably not Joe. He was a Master of the Bait and Switch! If he ever owned a boat it would have been M T Pockets. He had short arms and deep pockets, whenever it came going into his own.

  5. People of Bridgeport stand by for a Royal screwing. We now have a state commission of regionalization. This can only mean one thing, the big cities of Connecticut are going to get screwed by the suburbs.
    What do the ‘burbs have to offer Bridgeport? Try as I may I can’t think of too much.
    The surrounding towns have a paid Police department an a paid fire department (except Trumbull & Monroe ), Bridgeport and Stratford have city garbage collection the rest have occupants pay private concerns. Bridgeport has all the hospitals, none are located in the suburbs. Bridgeport has all the mental health facilities. We have all the jails and we have most of the poor. What are the ‘burbs going to take over? Nothing.
    Here is a prime example of cooperation between the cities and towns. The city wants to build a regional Science high school in Trumbull on land owned by Bridgeport. Just about every official in Trumbull has weighed in against this school being in Trumbull. They of course want it built in Bridgeport so that Bridgeport can absorb all of the expense.
    Just look who will be representing Bridgeport and you know what’s going to happen. One must remember there are about 7 good-sized cities and 162 little towns in the house, do the math.

    1. “The big cities of Connecticut are going to get screwed by the suburbs”? Pardon my assumption, but the big cites are already getting screwed by the suburbs. A large part of the problem is that the cities in general and Bridgeport in particular are poorly represented in the state legislature. Bridgeport’s legislative delegation is a collection of conflicting personal agendas.

    2. I would still like to know why the city, or Bill Finch, is unable and/or unwilling to part with any city-owned real estate. The city has contracted a private firm to administrate the boot-finder program to generate more tax revenue. C’mon, big Bill. Why is it that developers back out after dealing with your administration?

    3. We have all the jails and we have most of the poor. What are the ‘burbs going to take over? Nothing.

      All true, so far as it goes. The idea is that suburbia should decide to either absorb the services they want to have located far away from them, or cough up more dollars for the cities.

    4. Limited time and comment for today re your subject. Please refer me to the new committee on regionalization: Who? When? Where? What statute? Thanks.

      Not like you to seemingly panic like this. Relative to the school subject, are the regional schools like VO-AG in Trumbull, Aquaculture in Bridgeport or the proposed Science funded by a local Board of Education or some other mechanism?

      If you remember that school operating and capital budget costs are paid 80% by the State, isn’t that the best example of regional sharing of costs, not lumping them onto the City? To the extent that talented kids from Bridgeport get to attend with kids from all over the region, and that teachers of special subjects work in these special schools upholding a quality level of expectation from their students I do not see the problem.
      You mention seven ‘good-sized cities’ in CT. Assuming that they are the largest the population of these is probably less than 1 million people, less than 1/3 of the State’s total population. So to my way of thinking in the field of education if 2/3 of people in the State are sharing in 80% of education costs that is not a bad equation, especially if the wealthier communities are paying more income taxes than the 1/3 generally less wealthy in cities. It is also a reason to study the ‘payment in lieu of taxes’ funding to discover why these are not reimbursed at a higher percentage than they are. Do you know why they are at the current level?
      The more we can learn about how things work, and the reasons behind them, to the extent that they are patently unfair, we can make a case anywhere, anytime and have a chance to initiate change. To the extent that we keep lamenting the land area of our City, etc., etc., we weaken ourselves and a case for change.
      By the way would regionalization serve to increase or decrease the number of people available to pursue regional economic development? The number of leaders of public safety departments or financial functions personnel? Might it have a positive effect on ethical behavior? (It appears that Ethics Committees in the region use different definitions of conflicts of interest, etc.) More?

  6. Here is a small piece of an article in the Connecticut post relating to the closing of a prison in Cheshire:
    CHESHIRE — State officials have closed the minimum-security Webster Correctional Institution here and transferred its 220 inmates to other jails to help reduce the state’s budget deficit.
    The article went on to say that the closing would save $3.4 million in mostly utility costs.
    Please tell me why the state wants to spend $15 million plus for a new prison for up to 24 girls. Governor, use the prison you just closed.

  7. I’ve wondered that myself. The property in Cheshire where Webster Correctional Institute is located is also home to Cheshire Correctional Institute, where guys like Richard Crafts (the “woodchipper” murderer) serve out their life-without-parole sentences, as well as Manson Youth Institute, where those convicted of adult offenses are transferred until the age of twenty-one (they are then transferred to an adult correctional facility). There is a lot of land up there. With all of the available acreage in the town of Cheshire owned by the Department of Corrections, why is this detention center for teenaged girls being built in Bridgeport? The Governor has proffered that most of the inmates at the proposed Virginia Avenue facility will be from Bridgeport, Waterbury and New Haven. Cheshire is arguably more centrally located. Why do the people of the city of Bridgeport deserve the dubious honor of being home to yet another correctional facility?

  8. Wow I am disgusted with the Republican party. That scumbag named Rush the big bastard made some really bad comments and I just read them. How can a person be so insensitive to what happen in Haiti? And there are people out there who say look at the Republican candidate and the qualities. Now I can honestly tell them get the f%c# out of here with that shit. That party is a slimebag party with no heart screw them and I mean ALLLLLLLLL of them!!!

  9. You really have to chill out. When did Limbaugh become the Republican party spokesperson? Of course his remarks are over the top and totally off the wall. The key to your statement is “how can a PERSON” be so insensitive. He is a jerk but to say all Republicans think that way is over the top and on par with some of Limbaugh’s other preachings. Radicalism on any side is wrong.
    While I am at it let me ask you What president did more to fight AIDS in Africa than any other president in US history? What president sent more medicine to Africa to fight AIDS? This is going to shock you and I urge you to check it out. GEORGE BUSH.

  10. BEACON2 I am not against the regionalization of schools but Trumbull does not want to absorb costs that are not reimbursed by the state such as janitorial, plowing, maintenance to name a few. We are building a regional High School at the location near the Discovery Museum and we have the regional Aqua Culture High School in Bridgeport all of which we pick up the above-mentioned costs. Trumbull High School does have 40 Bridgeport Kids attending their Vo Ag classes.
    The Pilot funding is set by the elected officials in Hartford and thus the cities get outvoted when it is ever brought up to increase the Pilot monies because the suburbs have very little covered under Pilot. Bridgeport taxpayers pick up the shortfall.
    Regional Economic Development sounds good on paper. We got a taste of that with Scinto’s home for the elderly in Monroe. They would have gotten the right to tie into our sewer system and we would have gotten a token payment each year from the taxes paid to Monroe. In the meantime we (Bridgeport ) would be responsible for the sewer infrastructure which is near capacity and badly in need of updating. There is little or no benefit to Regional Economic Development for Bridgeport, maybe a few more jobs but that’s it.
    I don’t see the benefits to regional police chiefs or fire chiefs. The problems facing a city of Bridgeport chief are different than those faced by our suburban neighbors.
    I do see a benefit in ordering equipment, supplies and the like on a regional basis there are bound to be savings in these areas.

    1. Café Roma To Engage Conversational French Classes.

      They will be holding Pre-Cana Conferences starting on when Fat Tuesday falls on Wednesday, or when Ash Wednesday falls on Tuesday.

        1. No-Lo-Se! Stinko de Mayo is traditionally the headline used for the Yankees after they lose on Cinco de Mayo!

          Every day is Stinky de Mayo for that finicky cat of yours.

  11. TC with all due respect you might as well go join the Republican party because your values reflects it and yes Rush is their spokesman we all know that. Don’t tell me to chill because that is what the Republican party reflects, a scumbag party of right-wing nuts who do not give a flying F%c* about anyone but their damn selves. No one can tell me I am wrong on it ’cause I see the proof every day. If this were a Democrat saying it I would be just as mad. You need a wake-up call TC because the Republican party always shows their true colors and with your values you will never win an election because they don’t sell in Bpt! Like I said will all due respect. Talking about chill you must be crazy after those comments by Rush.

    1. The following was posted on the CBS News website two days ago:

      Controversial conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh is defending earlier comments in which he accused President Obama of using the disaster in Haiti for political gain.

      “I do believe that everything is political to this president,” Limbaugh said on his radio show yesterday. “Everything this president sees is a political opportunity, including Haiti, and he will use it to burnish his credentials with minorities in this country and around the world, and to accuse Republicans of having no compassion.”

      President Obama has dedicated $100 million for immediate relief efforts in Haiti, calling it a “top priority.” The president has not politicized the matter or criticized Republicans’ response to the disaster. Republicans, in fact, have largely expressed their support for the president’s efforts.

      White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs did accuse Limbaugh specifically of having no compassion after his original remarks: “I think in times of great crisis, there are always people that say really stupid things,” Gibbs said yesterday. “I don’t know how anybody — I don’t know how anybody could sit where he does, having enjoyed the success that he has, and not feel some measure of sorrow for what has happened in Haiti.”

      The conservative magazine the National Review defended a portion of Limbaugh’s original comments in which he questioned the effectiveness of giving aid to Haiti via the government.

      “On the facts, Rush is right,” writes Jim Geraghty. “The tale of U.S. foreign aid to Haiti is maddening, as well-meaning Americans dump more and more money to alleviate suffering, only to see little or no actual improvement in the living conditions on the ground.”

      Geraghty points to a Reuters article outlining a history of corrupt and weak civil services in Haiti that has slowed the distribution of American aid. Now, in the aftermath of this giant earthquake, the biggest challenge for government and private relief efforts alike is the lack of infrastructure available to move supplies.

      Former President Bill Clinton on the CBS “Early Show” disputed Limbaugh’s earlier claims that “we’ve already donated to Haiti. It’s called the U.S. income tax.”

      “Well that’s just not true,” Clinton said. “We give a modest amount of aid.”

      It will take significant resources to help the people of Haiti recover. CBS News White House correspondent Mark Knoller reports that the American public has responded to the Haiti crisis so far by donating more than $8 million to the American Red Cross for Haiti relief — $10 dollars at a time — by texting HAITI to 90999. The Red Cross successfully implemented the text-to-donate solution with the assistance of the U.S. State Department and the promotion of the Obama Administration.

  12. *** After that killing in Cheshire (Dr.’s family) the town wants nothing more to do with any “new” institutions period. Besides, their water & sewer systems are probably filled to capacity? Webster was a medium-security dorm-type institution for adults; okay for guys with less than 3 yrs. to do without any major violence on their records. Keep them busy working all the different inside & out work details & in-house programs & monthly furloughs to get them acclimated back into society. Only problem is it starts off with that mindset and as the state system becomes over crowded, it turns into a dumping ground for anything & everything “BAD”! Which ends up being a powderkeg in a dorm setting with minimum security & control, with no locked cells except only in the admitting & processing room that holds about 25 inmates? It’s probably better off closed than open if it has to be run in that unsafe fashion! *** Put the girls’ detention center on GE property; main access to hospital, churches, highways & parkways, etc. ***

    1. I’m familiar with how Webster was administered. You got it all wrong. The DOC is borderline anal when it comes to evaluating prisoners and determining which get to go to a country club like Webster and which get to stay in the big house next door.

      You are basing an opinion on rumor and supposition.

  13. donj: I guess you choose to ignore my post about Limbaugh and the Republican party. I guess you choose to ignore one of the good things done by Bush. That’s okay but you have to really start reading and opening up your mind. What proof do you see everyday as it relates to the Republican party and their screw-ups?
    Now what do you know about my values? What do you know about the 30 years of volunteer work with inner city kids? Do you know that my vote as a park commissioner saved the city from a massive tax increase in Ganim’s first year? Do you know about the charity work I still do? The answer is NO. Just because I look at the candidate and not just the party does not make me a Republican. Under your scenario I should vote for the ex-governor of Illinois if he ever runs again on the Democratic ticket or maybe I should vote for Marion Berry if he runs on the Democratic ticket.
    Take a look what is happening recently in America. Democrats have lost the governors office in New Jersey ( heavy Dem state) and in Virginia (Ditto) Take a look at the race in Massachusetts for Kennedy’s seat. You have to vote for the person not the party.
    Channel your anger and spend that energy researching all the candidates that are running for whatever office in your area.
    I suggest you look at all the polls and get the pulse of the American people and what they are thinking. What the American people are thinking is actually opposite of what you speak about on this blog. READ, Study and open up you mind.


    From The New York Times:

    January 16, 2010, 9:42 am
    Coakley on Schilling: A Yankee Fan?

    BOSTON – Could the fate of the health care bill, its passage or defeat, hinge on a sports gaffe?

    Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, the Democrat vying to succeed the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy and to cast the 60th vote for the bill, may be about to find out. She is being roundly mocked in this Red Sox-crazy state for mistakenly suggesting in a radio interview that Curt Schilling, the former Red Sox pitcher, is a Yankee fan.

    Mr. Schilling was accorded near-heroic status here for guiding the team to victory over their arch-rivals, the Yankees, in a key game in 2004 while his own sock was literally bloody from an ankle injury. The radio exchange was quickly blasted to reporters by gleeful Republicans.

    It was Ms. Coakley who brought up baseball in the interview on WBZ News Radio. She noted that her rival, Scott Brown, a Republican State Senator, had been campaigning in Boston Friday with Rudolph W. Giuliani, and she reminded listeners that Mr. Giuliani is a Yankee fan.

    The interviewer, Dan Rea, said, “Yeah, but now Scott Brown has Curt Schilling, OK?’”

    To which Ms. Coakley replied, “And another Yankee fan.”

    “Schilling?’” Mr. Rea pressed.

    “Yes,’” she said.

    “Curt Schilling a Yankee fan?” he persisted.

    “No, all right, I’m wrong on my, I’m wrong,” she said.

    Mr. Schilling, who helped Senator John McCain win the New Hampshire primary in 2008 by campaigning with him there, and who has been supporting Mr. Brown, fired back on his own blog. “I’ve been called a lot of things,’” he wrote, “but never, and I mean never, could anyone ever make the mistake of calling me a Yankee fan. Well, check that, if you didn’t know what the hell is going on in your own state maybe you could …”

    1. Schilling is a shill, the perfect decoy for Dems. That wasn’t blood in his sock in 2004, just one of those wrestling gags. He doesn’t want to admit that he was a Yankee fan as a kid. Didn’t he predict the Sox would win another series in 2009? Gee, can anyone recall who won the series in 2009? Oh wait, yeah …

  15. Fem-dem witches like Coakley keep American males tolerant of ringworm-infested GOPers with grit-rotted teeth like Brown. Now that the Patriots are out of the playoffs am I rooting for the Jets or what?

  16. Brown is an empty suit.

    Trouble is, Coakley is an empty skirt.

    She’d have more charisma if she grew hair under her arms and announced she was moving to Provincetown.

    She’s taken a sure thing and maybe made it a race.

    What’s dumber than the Schilling crack was attending a fundraiser in Washington earlier in the week–giving blowjobs to lobbyists before she is even elected.

    And then she was defending her lousy campaign style complaining how cold it was greeting people outside of Fenway Park (around the time of that hockey game up there). Gee, New England in January … What does she expect, Malibu?

  17. *** Both Coakley & Brown are wrong for that seat, is this the best the 2 major parties have to offer? Another good example of exactly what’s happening in many states when it comes to endorsed political leaders! *** Great playoff games today with my Jets on for tomorrow @ 4:15pm & Vikings @ 1:00pm. My picks so far are 2 out of 2 with Jets & Vikes picks for Sunday, hope all football fans enjoy the games. *** What’s all the fuss about those 2 overpaid baseball teams, Yanks & Sox? Don’t you guys want to be fans & part of the new team on the winning horizon, N.Y. “METS”? ***

  18. O.I.B. Rumor Mill:

    Yes, business conditions are miserable. But while some have hunkered down and accepted a smaller economy, others will use the new year to launch a marketing surge that’ll embrace all things Bridgeport. Unlike O.I.B., this website will cover The Park City’s expanded social scene. And it will look like this:


  19. “… back to 1994, a nutty year for me …”

    March 8, 1994 was the day I left my finger in Hartford.
    It was a nutty year to you Lennie; a gutsy year to me.


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