Mayor Announces Grand List, Plus: Tell Stratford Pols To Shove It

11 a.m. UPDATE: Bob from BePo had a question the other day about the city’s new mil rate for the budget year that will begin July 1.

The answer to Bob’s question becomes a little clearer, although still not complete, in the attached news release from Mayor Bill Finch regarding an increase in the city’s grand list following the implementation of the citywide revaluation of  property.

When reval is set, grand list goes up, mil rate should come down. Where? We won’t know for sure until the mayor submits the budget to the City Council in April and the legislative body completes review and sets the final mil rate. Down side is some properties are worth more which means higher taxes. Stay tuned.

Bridgeport Reports Growth of 27.23% in 2008 Grand List

Wheelabrator Joins List of Top 10 Taxpayers

BRIDGEPORT, CT (March 5, 2009) – Mayor Bill Finch is pleased to announce the completion of the 2008 Grand List. Finch announced an increase in net taxable property of $1.46 billion or approximately 27.231% from the 2007 Net Grand List. This represents a net taxable Grand List of $7.043 billion.

The largest increase in real property occurred in industrial, representing an increase of 238.6% or $401 million. “Despite the problems faced nationally with the slowdown of the housing market, this shows that Bridgeport’s real estate economy continues to hold its own,” said Mayor Finch. “The addition of the Wheelabrator plant to the list of our Top 10 taxpayers is especially welcome in this economic climate.” Previously, Wheelabrator was exempt from taxation under a 20-year PILOT agreement.

The 27.231% increase over last year’s grand list is the result of a citywide revaluation, mandated by Connecticut General Statutes. The last revaluation occurred in 2003, on which the previous assessments are based. “Although there has been a fluctuation in sales prices over the last five years, statistics prove that values are still higher in 2008 than they were in 2003.” said Michael Feeney, Chief Financial Officer.

By category, the increases are as follows: $1.46 billion in net taxable real property and $50.65 million in net personal property. Motor vehicle decreased by $17.4mm or 4.4%. The overall Gross Grand List (prior to deductions of all Exemptions and Exempt Property) grew by nearly $1.86 billion, from $8.14 billion for 2007 to $10 billion in 2008. Exempt real estate now composes $2.9 Billion in assessed value, or approximately 33% of the Total Real Property component of $8.88 Billion.

Acting City Tax Assessor Elaine Carvalho, CCMA, stated that the decline in motor vehicle values is being felt statewide, as the nation continues to struggle with the credit crisis. “All of our surrounding communities experienced a similar decline in this category.”

In accordance with Connecticut General Statutes, the 2008 Grand List reflects a 70% assessment ratio.

Top Ten Taxpayers – Real Estate / Personal Property Combined for 2008


$ 288,528,884

United Illuminating
$ 132,181,954

AT&T Mobility LLC
$ 75,341,484

Southern Conn. Gas Co.
$ 72,065,357

People’s United Bank
$ 68,910,104

PSE&G Power Connecticut LLC
$ 52,663,326

Bridgeport Energy LLC
$ 48,784,414

Connecticut Light and Power
$ 45,923,653

Success Village Apartment Inc.
$ 26,762,580

Watermark 3030 Park LLC
$ 25,532,028

The Safety Zone

I’d love to see the FAA shove the airport runway Stratford doesn’t want to improve right up its ass.

Mayor Bill Finch, City Council President Tom McCarthy and Airport Manager John Ricci joined an FAA official Wednesday to urge a legislative committee in Hartford to stop Stratford from stonewalling a runway safety zone. Stratford pols had won a legislative moratorium on improvements.

The city’s airport, located in Stratford, has been forever stuck in a tug of war between the two communities. Bridgeport cannot make needed improvements, let alone expansion, without Stratford’s approval. Why? Because Stratford pols are scared shit of the residential lungs in Lordship. Yes, it’s Lordship this and Lordship that. What a bunch of crap.

You think Mayor Jim I-Pack Miron is going to say anything to upset Lordship in an election year?

Stratford has a jewel under its nose that could be embraced by the town because of its economic potential. You think Bridgeport pols are myopic? Stratford pols are simply Bridgeport pols that moved east.

OIB has lots of Stratford friends. I’d like to know their take as well.

Nice to see Congressman Jim Himes tell U.S. Senator from Oklahoma Tom Coburn to stick it. Coburn attempted to strip away the $1.9 million earmarked for water taxi service for Pleasure Beach which has languished since the burning of the bridge 13 years ago connecting the peninsula to the city.

Himes is trying to save the money that his predecessor Chris Shays had lined up. So far, so good. The measure is part of a bill that passed the U.S. House and now is working its way through the Senate. Connecticut Senators Chris Dodd and Joe Lieberman have stood by the funding for the city.

Malloy, Oh Boy

Ben Malloy, the 21-year-old son of Stamford Mayor Dannel Malloy, is one gigantic toothache for his dad in more ways than one.

Dad wants to be governor of Connecticut and has a decent shot at becoming the Democratic nominee for governor in 2010. Of course Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz and former House Speaker Jim Amann will have something to say about that.

Ben was pinched by Darien cops on robbery charges Wednesday, following drug charges in 2007. Dad says his boy has some mental illness issues he’s trying to help him work through. This stuff happens in politics. Bill Clinton had his brother, Jimmy Carter had his brother. Doesn’t anyone have a sister or daughter or a wife who’s a big pain in the ass?

Speaking of problems, Chris Dodd who has represented Connecticut in Congress for more than half his life has a growing list of potential opponents lining up against him, the latest CNBC talk show host Larry Kudlow. Former Congressman Rob Simmons, from eastern Connecticut, also is in the mix. So is Waterbury State Senator Sam Caligiuri.

Now what would happen if on the way to the dance for the eager GOP, Dodd packs his mortgage application, waves bye bye and Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is nominated to replace him on the Democratic side? That’s a nightmare for the GOP. Dodd’s a good guy who’s just been in government so long that the cracks are showing.

Where’s The 20 Grand?

What’s going on in City Hall? Search me. No, search the treasurer’s office. No, search the person who fleeced the office. Statement from Mayor Bill Finch.

A bag containing an undetermined amount of checks and cash was reported missing in the Treasurer’s Office late yesterday. Bridgeport police were notified and a complete investigation has been undertaken by the Detective division. The police department is pursuing any and all leads vigorously, and if it is found that a theft occurred then the person or persons responsible will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

“The investigation of this incident is a high priority for me,
especially since it involves our taxpayers hard-earned dollars,” said Mayor Bill Finch. “We won’t tolerate any sort of transgression, and our Detective bureau is working diligently to investigate this unfortunate incident. In the meantime, we are reviewing our protocol and internal processes regarding the handling of checks and cash to be sure that proper procedure was followed.”

News release from Congressman Jim Himes

Himes to Hold Foreclosure Prevention Forum in Bridgeport

Congressman Jim Himes (CT-4) and local legislators today announced that they will host foreclosure prevention forums this Saturday in Stamford and Bridgeport with a panel of foreclosure prevention experts. The forums will bring together government officials, community organizations, and foreclosure prevention specialists to connect homeowners facing foreclosure with programs and services that can help keep families in their homes.

This week, the U.S. House is slated to vote on the Help Families Save Their Homes Act. The bill includes key incentives to encourage lenders to negotiate affordable mortgages for homeowners who are underwater, at risk of foreclosure, and those nearing bankruptcy. This plan is expected to help 7 to 9 million families restructure or refinance their mortgages to avoid foreclosure-as well as their neighbors whose own house values would drop as a result of a nearby foreclosure.

Saturday’s events will include an overview by the Congressman on the Help Families Save Their Homes Act, guidance form foreclosure prevention experts on how best to maintain ownership throughout different stages of the foreclosure process, and a question and answer session with the panelists. Following the public session, local experts and organizations will be available for private questions from individual participants.

Event Details:


Saturday, March 7

1:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m.

WHO: Congressman Jim Himes

Connecticut General Assembly Assistant Minority Leader Don Clemons

State Representative Andres Ayala

Charlie Tisdale, Executive Director, ABCD

Tom Long, Project Manager, The Workplace, Inc.

Valencia Taft-Jackson Manager of Residential Mortgages, Connecticut Housing Finance Authority

Joan Carty, President & CEO, Housing Development Funds

WHERE: Town Hall Annex

999 Broad Street, Bridgeport, CT



  1. Lennie, what Kool-Aid glass have you been drinking from? Chris Dodd is a bona fide piece of trash. I say this after watching him for years feather his own nest and screw Connecticut. Let’s look at his 35 years of service.
    Early on he spent more time in Central and South America than he did in Connecticut. He brought very little back to Connecticut. Okay we will write that off as having a lack of seniority.
    We in Connecticut kept reelecting this guy. It came time for the bids on the presidential helicopter that Sikorsky had built for years and the bid goes to another company. Now here is a senator with a ton of seniority and he can’t influence this contract. If this contract were being bid on by a company in Harry Reid’s state you can bet your ass that’s where it would have went.
    To feed his ego he decides to run for president. Now only a moron would think he had any chance at all to get the nomination. What does he do? He and his family take up residency in Iowa.
    He is chairmen of the Banking Committee and gets a favorable discount mortgage rate. Nice!!!
    He along with Barney Frank loosen up mortgage eligibility within Freddie Mac & Fannie Mae stating that everyone is ENTITLED to own a home and thus it begins, the era of the 100%-plus mortgages.
    There is a move in congress a few years ago to tighten up Fannie & Freddie’s mortgage requirements and he and Frank fight tooth and nail to prevent this. They win–we lose.
    The banks get into this mortgage race and start giving mortgages to everyone and anyone. Not a peep from chairman Dodd. The banks start bundling these mortgages and selling them off, again not a peep from Dodd.
    Here we are today up to our ears in bad mortgages, banks on the verge of closing and that sanctimonious bastard Dodd acting like he is the savior when in fact he and congressmen Frank are at fault for this mess.
    Lennie NICE GUY MY ASS.

  2. I just got off the phone with Will Lee. He had an interesting observation. It appears that Will would like to know who actually owns the property that will be utilized as the “runway safety zone”. Why do you think Will Lee is interested in who owns the property? Maybe it’s because some of the pols in Stratford are buzzing about the ownership.

  3. Yeah…Will Lee agrees with Wondering. Barney Franks and Chris Dodd are gumbys. The banking and financial industry knew full well that these two had not the intellectual capacity to execute the office for which they were elected. Playing to the public on “everyone is ‘Entitled’ to the American dream of home ownership,” these two buffoons crippled the lending laws by opening a floodgate of worthiness criteria virtually permitting everyone an opportunity to buy a house. It didn’t matter what the actual value was or the capacity of the lendee to pay. Give ’em the money was the mantra. Prices skyrocketed followed by the inevitable default resulting in foreclosure. Had Franks and Dodd been watchful this whole mess could have been avoided. 20% down or no house. 2 and 1/2 times your annual income is a comfortable guideline for a mortgage level. That was 1970. Guess what? It’s back. No one should buy a house unless they have a significant interest in the value. No one should take a mortgage that cannot be paid back. No-brainer. Same thing with cars. Is the economy stimulated because GM operates its assembly line 24/7 because lenders are giving away 100% loans? DOWN PAYMENT>>>DOWN PAYMENT<<<Capisce?

  4. I see the Grand List figures are out. I love the comment by Mr. Feeney “The 27.231% increase over last year’s grand list is the result of a citywide revaluation, mandated by Connecticut General Statutes. The last revaluation occurred in 2003, on which the previous assessments are based. Although there has been a fluctuation in sales prices over the last five years, statistics prove that values are still higher in 2008 than they were in 2003.” said Michael Feeney, Chief Financial Officer.”
    Is he kidding me or what? When was the last time a reevaluation was done and the figures from that reevaluation were lower? It does not matter what the economic times are, the company that is hired to do the reval is not going to put itself out of business by coming in with a lower figure. Mr. Feeney please get your head out of your butt.
    Now Finch is crowing that the Real Estate Economy is holding its own? Earth to Finch, take a look around the city and check out all the vacant homes. Try and sell your house for what you paid for it. Look I am not blaming Finch for the housing crisis but please don’t PEE on my shoes and tell me it’s raining.

  5. Good for Jim Himes standing up for the city and telling that Okie senator to stick it up his ass. This city has languished under the weight of complacency and political inertia for too damned long. Here’s the man that will do something/anything he can for the city of Bridgeport. No, I do not think Rep. Jim Himes can walk on water, cure cancer or formulate a cure for the common cold. But he is working hard to bring the federal buck-bucks to our beleaguered city. Ain’t it about time someone did? And ain’t it about time for the city to sell off some of its municipal real-estate holdings so that the tax base can be increased and property owners’ tax bills reduced? Is that too much to ask? Hmmm???

    Now, about Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy’s kid … If the boy is suffering from mental illness it would be something along the lines of kleptomania. He could also be suffering from drug addiction. Drug addiction and compulsive thievery are not mutually exclusive afflictions, but there are causative relationships. My guess? “Poppies, poppies, they will make [him] very sleepy …”

  6. I think Himes is doing a good job in D.C.; I think he is a good and trustworthy politician and I think he will be good for this district.

    He needs to get his act together in the Bridgeport office, does anyone down there know anything about Bridgeport?

    As to Malloy I feel really sorry for him and his kid. This should not be something that hurts him in the election, but no doubt someone will try. I think Malloy knows a lot about cities and what we need and I’d like to see him win.

    As to his son, he could have depression or real bad ADD; I think Malloy had that, he gave an interview about it. Kids like that use drugs to self-medicate. Anyway no one knows what it is like going through this type of thing unless it happened to them. Malloy is a good man and I think he would make a good Governor and be very good for Bridgeport.

  7. *** Malloy would never be Gov. kid or no kid period; also Amann & Bysiewicz will come up short as well. If Gov. Rell decides to run again, she will beat all the Dem.”contenders”! If she does not run, then Mayor DeStefano from New Haven looks to be the Dem. to beat. Rich Blumenthal again, seems not interested so far in running for that office; however things could change sometimes. *** Time will tell! ***

    1. Blah-blah-blah … Another gust of hot gas, bile and spew. Don’t have anything positive to say? What is your major malfunction, numb-nuts?

  8. I just read the newspaper article. It was marijuana. Kid goes in armed with a pellet gun. He can’t be that ignorant, so he must be STOOPID!!!

  9. Breaking News On The City Hall Bank Deposit Theft!
    I just got off the horn with one of my sources at City Hall. Apparently, the surveillance tapes have failed to identify the thief. The city has just put together a video asking for the citizens’ help in catching the dastardly bastardly thief who stole $20,000 in taxpayer cash and checks.

    I’m sure this will be all over the fine local news later, but for now I believe the only link to this important video is on my blog.

    Take a bite out of crime.

    Mr Barnum’s Bridgeport To Nowhere

  10. We have been screwing around with Stratford and this airport for years. It’s time to force the issue and expand the airport or the airport SAFETY area. Look, the people that bought houses in Lordship knew there was an airport in Lordship when they bought their houses. What did they think those things that made noise and flew were? Condors? Exotic swamp birds? No, they were planes.
    Look, you can’t depend on Stratford to do anything; just look at the Shakespeare theater, the old Avco complex; as a matter of fact they screwed up the airport when they owned it.

  11. Regarding the theft of $20,000, the question is: why wasn’t this money locked in a safe somewhere? When you have that kind of money, shouldn’t it be secured away with a lock with only a few people having the combination/key? I just don’t understand it. Someone’s ass is going to fry big time for this one. Feeney is salivating just thinking about that discipline hearing.

    I heard a bit of gossip today regarding the bad feelings between John Gomes and Charlie Carroll. Seems that Gomes questioned why Charlie’s brother at Merit Insurance was getting all of the city’s auto policies. Gomes thought we could save money by considering other companies. Well that did not go over big with Big Charlie. Charlie ordered Gomes to butt out and keep away from his girlfriend too. Gomes can make his own copies. Gomes has since relocated away from the girlfriend and is a much happier camper.

  12. *** How many people have access to the area where the “$” was taken? And who & when noticed the money was missing? Also, if there’s supposed to be cameras on in that dept. & weren’t, why not? *** Inside job no doubt, by someone who works there or visits on a daily basis! Time to get the Finch hounds on the case before the scent is gone! *** Joel is good for making up fiction stories & blaming people, let’s wait & see what his intel thoughts come up with. ***

  13. Blaming people?

    “Inside job no doubt, by someone who works there or visits on a daily basis!”

    Back to counting!

    One for Lennie three for me …


Leave a Reply