Residence, What Residence? Plus: Political Tea Leaves, And Rosa Correa’s Appointment

You gotta love City Attorney Mark Anastasi.

How does a lawyer spew BS? Mark shared his “legal” defense of Civil Service Commission President Eleanor Guedes’ claimed bona fide residence in Bridgeport (even though she really lives in Trumbull).

Eleanor led the charge to fire former Personnel Director Ralph Jacobs who’s challenging his termination in court.

The City Council’s Miscellaneous Matters Committee took up the case of Guedes Monday night based on a resolution submitted by Councilman Bob Walsh that questioned her residency. Explained Mark, lawyer protecting client …

“Preliminary review of the facts and law has disclosed the following … commissioner Guedes would appear to satisfy both (requirements for residency). She is a registered voter of the city of Bridgeport and as I understand the facts is registered to vote in Bridgeport and only in Bridgeport. Also, commissioner Guedes has declared a residence in the city of Bridgeport. The Bridgeport address for Commissioner Guedes is 1425 Noble Avenue which is zoned residential and as I understand includes living quarters. Individuals can and commonly do have multiple residences.”

The council committee tabled the resolution.

Look, Eleanor is a good person, runs a business in the city, pays her taxes, but when I asked her if she sleeps at 1425 Noble Avenue (her place of  business) while owning a home in Trumbull she replied that she has multiple residences. Not exactly a persuasive answer.

The City Charter is clear. Members of boards and commissions must live in the city.

I don’t have a problem with suburbanites sitting on boards and commissions if they own a business and pay taxes in the city. If you want suburbanites sitting on boards, well, change the charter. Open it up. How about a charter revision panel to look at that?

Reading Tea Leaves

Hey, have any friends heading to China this week?

Yeah, a 70-member local contingent is headed to the birth of tea as part of a Bridgeport Regional Business Council sojourn. City Council President Tom McCarthy is on the trip, as well as former Democratic Town Chair John Stafstrom. BRBC guru Paul Timpanelli has joined them. Gee, I wonder what kind of deals will be cut over tea and fortune cookies?

Any guesses? Let them fly.

Big Mac bagged Stafstrom to support Mario Testa for town chair in 2008. Mario’s up for reelection in six months.

I wonder if they’ll be drinking more than tea?

Correa’s Bridgeport Connection

Mention Bridgeport at the Smithsonian and curator staff will say “Oh, yeah, Bridgeport.” The Park City’s contributions to the industrial revolution are well noted at the heralded DC museum. About 10 years ago I attended the opening of a permanent exhibit devoted to the city’s sewing machine heritage. P.T. Barnum lured Elias Howe to Bridgeport and that triggered the city as the sewing machine capital of the world.

Rosa Correa has spent near a lifetime promoting all things Bridgeport. The Republican political leader, former director of the governor’s Bridgeport office and current member of the Civil Service Commission, visited the Smithsonian  recently to attend her first meeting as a member of the National Museum of the American Latino Commission, a federal group to study the potential creation of a National Museum of the American Latino.

Smithsonian staff directed her right to the Bridgeport exhibit when she mentioned her home city. See Rosa’s thoughts below followed by news release and group shot of the commission.

It is a privilege to be among the 23 bi-partisan members of this Commission, which was chartered by Congress in 2008. The commissioners were appointed by President Obama, former President Bush, Democratic and Republican leaders in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Commissioners represent regions from throughout the country.

I am grateful for the surprise and opportunity offered in September 2008 when Congressman Christopher Shays nominated me to this Commission. I joyously accepted the appointment to this Commission by House Minority Leader John Boehner. I will reach out to people in the arts, elected officials, business people and key stakeholders to seek their advice and counsel on topics we will explore for the report to Congress that the Commission is charged with creating.

It is important to note that while in D.C. for the first meeting of the Commission, we were invited to The National Museum of American History for a welcoming celebration. An unexpected surprise awaited me when one of the curators upon hearing that I was from Bridgeport, Connecticut invited me to visit an exhibit that depicts three industrial cities, Charleston, South Carolina, Cincinnati, Ohio and my beloved Bridgeport. It was awe-inspiring when I saw the familiar sites and was reminded that often the journey that takes us away from home brings us back home where our creativity, skills and ideas were cultivated. Among all the activities, I cherished this moment and hope that Bridgeport residents will feel proud that our city has a permanent exhibit at a Smithsonian Institution.

News release:

National Museum of the American Latino Commission Holds Inaugural Meeting

Washington, DC — A federal commission to study the potential creation of a National Museum of the American Latino met for the first time on September 18 and 19, 2009 in Washington, D.C.

The bi-partisan Congressional Act that created the commission was signed into law by President Bush and held its first meetings under President Obama. The Commission consists of 23 members appointed by the President and the Majority and Minority Leaders of the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives.

The Commission will study the potential of a national museum in Washington, D.C. dedicated to the art, culture, and history of the Latino Community in the United States. A report outlining a plan for the museum is to be submitted to Congress and the White House within two years of the first meeting of the Commission.

The White House appointees include: Dr. Gilberto Cárdenas of Indiana, Emilio Estefan of Florida, Dr. José B. Fernández of Florida, Andrés López of Puerto Rico, Cindy Peña of Colorado, Abigail M. Pollack of Florida, and Cid Wilson of New Jersey. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid appointed Moctesuma Esparza of California, Carlos Ezeta of Nevada, Susan Gonzales of California, and Dr. Emma Sepúlveda of Nevada.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell appointed Dame Sandy Colón Peltyn of Nevada, Ellie López-Bowlan of Nevada, Dr. Eduardo J. Padrón of Florida, and Sean D. Reyes of Utah. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi appointed Luis R. Cancel of California, Lorraine García-Nakata of California, Eva Longoria Parker of Texas, and Henry R. Muñoz III of Texas. House Minority Leader John Boehner appointed Nelson Albareda of Florida, Rosa J. Correa of Connecticut, Dr. Aida Levitan of Florida; and Danny Vargas of Virginia.

Members were chosen for the Commission based on qualifications in museum administration, expertise in fundraising, experience in public service, and demonstrated commitment to the research, study or promotion of American Latino life, art, history, or culture.

Congressman Xavier Becerra of California authored the bill and introduced it in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senator Ken Salazar of Colorado, who now serves as Secretary of the Interior, presented it in the U.S. Senate. The bill was co-sponsored by Republicans and Democrats in both chambers and was signed into law in May 2008.

Secretary Salazar, speaking about the first meeting of the Commission, stated, “The National Museum of the American Latino Commission is a select group of Americans that have been called upon to provide a plan for a national museum that preserves and shares a vital part of our nation’s heritage for the benefit of all people interested in the richness of the American experience.”


Rosa Correa center left spiffy in tea rose



  1. Mark should be arrested as a co-conspirator in perpetrating an election fraud.

    One of Bridgeport’s great ones, and former Barnum Museum honcho, Barbara Kram, is a big-wig in the Public Affairs office at The Smithsonian.

  2. Repeating last night’s post because it was so late and new comments

    MCAT // Sep 28, 2009 at 9:58 pm

    First: Irrelevant Lobster Lore …

    In Maine there used to be so many lobsters washing up all over the place they used to be ground up for fertilizer. Also, they fed so many lobsters to prisoners, that a complaint was lodged that it was cruel and inhuman punishment to be fed lobster every day!

    Second: City Folk

    When I worked for the City I worked with some great people. People who have been mentioned, but many others. Of course there are my friends, Phil and Patty, Janet Finch and some wonderful people in the City Attorney’s office. As an attorney (especially a government attorney) I will say that it is not the Attorney’s job to argue a case from his/her beliefs, but to present the absolute best case for his client. (Remember we had this discussion over Auden Grogins representing the Cheshire murderer.) There are many others; these are the people who answered the phone at 4:55 on a Friday, who took the time to help me learn my job so I could do it better, people who came in on Saturday to get the job done, answer e-mails at 10:00 at night and answer their cell phones at midnight during the session, so I could verify any deal that might have changed or would have affected Bridgeport, and the ones who returned calls or took calls during meetings at those same crucial times. I won’t name them, they know who they are and I miss them very much. Further, as I am finally recovering from back surgery I don’t need to take any more shots. (Thanks TK for visiting me; it was really nice of you.)

    Last: BRBC breakfast

    My first outing was going to the breakfast with the Mayors and First Selectman from seven area towns. I thought the questions were great, the answers respectful and thoughtful (although I disagreed with some). But the best reason I enjoyed it, is that hearing and discussing issues made me realize how really happy I am that I am running for Town Council. At age 43 I found out what I loved and I am glad I am not giving it up. (Even if I am in a back brace, and have no money) I missed blogging with you all while I couldn’t sit up, but now I am back.


    Twenty years ago I produced a 4-hour documentary in China, mostly in Beijing and Guangzhou. It was several weeks prior to the protests at Tiananmen Square and still one of the greatest experiences of my life. I lived in Hawaii and worked at the NBC affiliate. We did a cultural exchange with 7 High School Students from Hawaii and 7 in China. We also chronicled the history of the Chinese in Hawaii; it was called “Walls and Bridges.” We traveled with our film crew, teachers from the Beijing teachers College and the Minster of Television and Radio. We got to attend the Chinese Grammys and see the most famous sights, as well as visiting the students’ homes. I hope the Bridgeport contingent walks away with at least half the appreciation I have for the Chinese people and their history. Also, I hope they see the connections that the average people of China want to make with the U.S. and the conditions they endure. (One hint if you don’t want your host to put more sea cucumber (slug) on your plate … don’t clean the plate. If you try to hide it in your napkin it eventually fills up and you will be embarrassed. This also applies to black dog and baby bird’s nest soup.)

  3. Knowing Rosa for many many years, she is a source of pride and joy for the community and for the city. Her nephew Jorge Garcia just got a major promotion in the BOE and he will be as good a leader for the Community as Rosa has been.

    1. Congratulations to Rosa and her nephew Jorge both very good and respectable members of our community. I’m not sure if Jorge still lives here or Hamden/New Haven. In any case they both are deserving of recognition.

  4. City Attorney Mark Anastasi is at it again. When the requirements for residency issue came up concerning a few Bridgeport firefighters these same criteria were NEVER accepted and used for Bridgeport firefighters who met the same requirements for residency. City Attorney Mark Anastasi now has SELECTIVE AMNESIA AGAIN.

  5. A file drawer in the City Attorney’s Office is marked “Charter, Screw It” with bogus “documents” explaining the legality of appointing out-of-towners to city boards and commissions. These things go back decades and no doubt Anastasi was using them when Paoletta was mayor. It’s disappointing Mark did not come up with his own wrinkle of blarney. It is a sign of the lack of initiative and energy by the administration to merely repeat old lies instead of creating entertaining new ones.
    Fish or cut bait: Will the City Council do something about it? History says no.
    Will Tom Bucci, Jacobs’ attorney, do something about it?

    Trip involving McCarthy, Stafstrom, Timpanelli … There’s got to be a hook for “a slow boat to China” in here someplace.

  6. Riddle me this, who is paying for this trip to China???
    How many months off a year does Tommy Mac get?
    Does his vacation time get doubled since he is a city employee and council prez?

  7. Tuesday Sept 29 on “Bridgeport Now” at 8:30pm –
    Tonight we discusses the residency issue regarding the Civil Service Commission with Bridgeport Councilman Bob Walsh as well as other local issues.

    The program starts earlier, at 8pm, but will be doing some experimental programming so we recommend you tune in only for the Bob Walsh segment from 8:30 to 9pm.

    “Bridgeport Now” Channel viewing info:
    8:30 to 9pm
    Channel 88: Bridgeport, Fairfield, Stratford
    Channel 99: AT&T. who said can’t see public access there?
    Channel 77: Millford, Orange.

  8. That obstructionist prick Bob Walsh made a very good point He chastised me for taking a mellow stand on the residency issue regarding what’s-her-name with a house in Trumbull and a pseudo-residence above her business in Bridgeport. My position was that what’s-her-name should be allowed to remain in her position because her business pays a lot more taxes that most homeowners to the city. Therefore she has a substantial amount of skin in the game and should be entitled to protect her assets by actively participating in municipal government. Seemed like a good position at the time. The obstructionist Walsh came back at me claiming that if we allow what’s-her-name to circumvent the spirit of the law, every calamarian would find some way to rent a postage-stamp-sized “residence” just so Don Calamari can stack the commissions with his own people.

    I wholeheartedly agree with Walsh. We must fight this issue aggressively and boot what’s-her-name off of her role and establish this as an unbending precedent.

    You know though, a lot of those kids who are screwing up the North End live in private homes and dormitories and they are allowed to register and vote. We should change that too.

          1. Ud. no me pusieron ninguna parte, pero son más que bienvenidos para obtener la mierda en cualquier momento.

  9. Anyone read a story in the Post entitled “Ex-WPCA leader appeals his firing”? It was written By Keila Torres and published online 09/27/2009.

    First couple of paragraphs read “Days after being fired from his job as general manager of the city’s Water Pollution Control Authority, Andrew Abate has filed an appeal with the city’s Civil Service Commission.

    “In the appeal, Abate claims the WPCA ‘did not have just cause when, on September 23, 2009, it removed and discharged him from his position.'”

    The long and short of it is summed up by the final two paragraphs:

    “… Abate has requested the Civil Service Commission conduct a hearing and subpoena ‘each member of the board of directors of the Water Pollution Control Authority to the hearing as well as the mayor of the city of Bridgeport, his assistant, Adam Wood, and the Town Chairman of the Bridgeport Democratic Party.’

    “He is seeking to gain back his position with full back pay and benefits.”

    Would anyone care to connect the dots?

  10. Here are the dots …
    Abate doesn’t live in Bridgeport;
    His attorney doesn’t live in Bridgeport;
    Wood doesn’t live in Bridgeport;
    The Town Chairman doesn’t live in Bridgeport;
    And as we are slowly learning, half of the Civil Service commission doesn’t live in Bridgeport.

    1. “Preliminary review of the facts and law has disclosed the following … commissioner Guedes would appear to satisfy both (requirements for residency). She is a registered voter of the city of Bridgeport and as I understand the facts is registered to vote in Bridgeport and only in Bridgeport. Also, commissioner Guedes has declared a residence in the city of Bridgeport. The Bridgeport address for Commissioner Guedes is 1425 Noble Avenue which is zoned residential and as I understand includes living quarters. Individuals can and commonly do have multiple residences.”

      Mark–I think you misunderstand and should contact the Public Integrity division of the State Attorney’s Office for clarification. See what the charge was for Mr. Lopez for illegally voting 3 times in Hartford.

      I guess once again Mark has missed the mark.

  11. The City Attorney (and those working under him, apparently) is operating under the delusion that his office works entirely at the whim of the mayor’s office. Mr. Anastasi must enjoy sucking up, bending over, and kissing ass to endanger his legal credentials with such abandon.

    1. *** Aren’t you use to bending over for a living too? Clean your mouth, the B/S is dribbling again out the corners. Try sci-fi novels in the kids’ section @ your local library, it’s free! However, you must return them sometime this year or the guys from the Rescue Mission will take your name off the VIP list. *** Take your boyfriend Yahooy too! ***


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