Weekend Update: What say you about winners and losers this week?
Library supporters big winners. I’m just wondering about the small print they’ll encounter when it comes to funding the 1 mil for library services. What can the city take away from the library that was a previous cost?
Losers? City pols who had pledged to work against the library question.
Sauda Baraka and Maria Pereira, Working Families Party candidates for Board of Education, big winners.
Losers? Pathetic organization on behalf of GOP BOE candidates.
Bad night for city GOP but great night for Republican State Party Chair Chris Healy.
Not such a great night for Healy’s Dem counterpart Nancy DiNardo who saw her hometown first selectman in Trumbull Ray Baldwin erased by Tim Herbst.
Big losers, suburban chief executive Dems.
Big winners, the Republican opponents.
Big win for Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti with federal agents oozing all over his city. Electorate is awfully forgiving when you don’t raise taxes. Are the feds done with Mayor Mark who has not been charged?
Not Wed To Ned
When a candidate has an endless supply of cash to spend on his own campaign, he’s almost always a threat. But Ned Lamont, who upset U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman in a primary in 2006 only to lose the general election, is coming from a different place as he plans a gubernatorial run. For one thing, there’s no marketable monster like he had with Joe. Dems were anti war, Joe was pro war, Ned was a fit. But then he stumbled in the general. There’s a reason a Democrat has not been elected governor since 1986. The party nominee ends up being a liberal’s liberal and that doesn’t play well in a broad electorate general election. Ned is just that. I don’t see Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz or outgoing Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy cut that way. Will all the progressives that swooned over Ned have the same energy this time around? I think not. At least not from talking to Dem operatives around the state. Bysiewicz and Malloy (the endorsed candidate in 2006 who lost a close primary to New Haven Mayor John DeStefano) have been working party regulars and lining up support. And If I’m those two I say this: Ned Lamont cannot win a general election. If enough of that sinks in, it will cannibalize his primary support.
What’s The Commission On $1.5 million?
According to an e-blast sent by Black Rock realtor Gail Robinson, former Congressman Chris Shays has sold his house for more than $1.5 million. Not bad in this economy:
… Chris & Betsi Shays home at 37 Beacon Street closed today at a sale price of $1,550,000. This is the first public sale of a home for over a million in Black Rock since 2006, when at the peak of the market, 125 Battery Park Drive sold for $1,449,000. There was a private sale last year for 141 Anchorage at $2.3 million.
OIB heard from the former congressman Friday afternoon and he confirmed the sale. He and wife Betsi will reside in St. Michaels, MD. He shared this:
“We will miss our home in Bridgeport and all our terrific neighbors. Representing the people of the 4th Congressional District was an opportunity of a lifetime. I am sorry it is over but I am excited about our new opportunities. If you want it to be life can be a magnificent adventure and we want it to be.”
Caruso’s High Note
State Rep. Chris Caruso wants to take Governor Jodi Rell on a neighborhood tour of the Upper East Side. So does Republican Town Chair Marc Delmonico. The governor has declined the request. Are they not suitable squires? See Caruso’s invite below:
November 5, 2009
Governor M. Jodi Rell
Executive Office of the Governor
210 Capitol Avenue
Hartford, CT 06106
On behalf of my constituents, I would like to personally invite you to join me on a tour of the proposed site of the juvenile detention center in Bridgeport and the surrounding neighborhood. I believe this will give you the opportunity to see first hand that this is not an appropriate location for such a facility. It will also provide you with an opportunity to meet neighborhood residents in an effort to solicit their views.
Governor, I anxiously await your response.
State Representative, 126th District
From Jim Himes’ Times
On Monday, I was thrilled to host Secretary of Education Arne Duncan in Norwalk for a meeting with a diverse group of teachers, administrators, officials and reform advocates. I don’t use the word “thrilled” lightly. One of my frustrations in Congress has been that the urgency of financial regulatory reform and the emergency measures taken to try to reverse this recession have backburnered the make-or-break issue of our economic future: education. We are a very lucky country in terms of our natural resources, our hardworking people and our knack for business. But I am convinced that THE SINGLE most important competitive advantage we have is our innovative capacity. And that capacity is very much a function of how well we educate our people, from pre-school to post-graduate engineering school.
Secretary Duncan did not mince words. In terms of just about everything that matters: graduation rates, math and science scores, vocational education, we are behind our competitors and getting more so. In Bridgeport, a city I am proud to represent in Congress, less than half the kids who arrive at a high school graduate. That is neither morally nor economically acceptable. If you believe that a democracy depends on an engaged and educated citizenry, it may be an existential problem.
Fortunately, Secretary Duncan has both the drive and the resources to begin addressing it. The stimulus bill included billions of dollars to dampen the blow the economy would otherwise have dealt to schools. Secretary Duncan’s Race to the Top initiative is sending resources to those school districts that commit to the changes that will improve achievement, and which demonstrate improvement. As he put it, Secretary Duncan will nurture success regardless of where and how it is achieved. Given the severity of the challenge, we should expect nothing less.
News release from Himes opponent Rob Russo
Russo to Himes: “Where are the Jobs?”
Unemployment Rate Passes 10%
Today, the Department of Labor announced the United States economy lost another 190,000 jobs bringing the unemployment rate to 10.2%, the highest rate since 1983. When counting those who have either settled for part-time jobs or stopped looking for work, the unemployment rate is 17.5%.
“Candidate Jim Himes promised to lower unemployment, but Congressman Jim Himes has spent hundreds of billions of dollars on programs that have failed to create jobs.” Russo said. “Connecticut families are hurting, and Jim Himes is failing to help them.”
Every solution implemented by Jim Himes and the Democratically controlled Congress has failed to lower unemployment. In February when the Stimulus Bill passed the White House predicted it would create 41,000 jobs in Connecticut. In reality, Connecticut has lost 35,900 since that time.
“We need innovative solutions to revive our economy, not the Himes/Pelosi reckless solution of billions of dollars in new spending which has only created a “jobless recovery.”” said Russo.
News release from Jodi Rell
Governor Rell: State Exploring Prison Consolidation
Cites Decreasing Inmate Numbers, New Correction Officer Graduating Class And Effective Post-release Programs As Factors
Governor M. Jodi Rell today announced she has directed the Department of Correction to consider closing a prison, citing a decline in the inmate population, the agency’s success with a number of post-release programs and the need to find savings and efficiencies in state government.
“The fact that we are at a point to realistically consider closing a prison is a testament to DOC’s effectiveness in carrying out its mission, one of the most difficult in state government,” Governor Rell wrote in a letter today to Acting DOC Commissioner Brian K. Murphy. “However, consolidating operations must be done – first and foremost – with the safety of the staff, the public and the inmates as a priority.”
According to the DOC, the inmate population is currently about 18,500, down from a record high of nearly 19,900 in February 2008. The agency attributed the decrease, in part, to the success of some re-entry programs that allow offenders to return to productive lives and the stepped up pace of the now full-time parole board.
“Because of the agency’s efforts and re-entry initiatives, comprehensive and timely reviews by a full-time Board of Pardons and Parole and a new class of 125 Correction Officer graduates, we have an opportunity to build on those successes,” the Governor wrote.
Noting that other states are spending millions of dollars to build more prisons because of ballooning inmate population, the Governor said Connecticut has an opportunity to set itself apart from its neighbors in terms of efficiencies.
The Governor requested that the DOC, over the next few weeks, study the feasibility of closing a prison and make its recommendation to her by November 27. In her letter, however, the Governor underscored her intention to reopen any shuttered prison should the need arise.
“With troubling deficit estimates still a reality, it is incumbent upon us to thoroughly examine any and all savings in state spending, but if we again need the space and must reopen a prison, we absolutely will,” the Governor said.