Scrooge Delivers Pink Slips

Okay, here’s what’s going on regarding layoffs. Fifteen members of the Bridgeport local Laborers International Union of North America received pink slips representing 14 percent of the LIUNA city workforce.

Layoffs were issued to employees in the Health Department, Benefits, Information Technology, Parks and Planning Department, including two seasoned professionals Lynn Haig and Sam Shaw.

Also on the layoff list is the bus driver for needy veterans requiring transport to the VA hospital. How do you layoff the veterans driver heading into an election year? Is mayor Bill Finch a Grinch? (This layoff, I hear, was rescinded today.)

The LIUNA union has a 30-day notice clause in its contract so the actual layoffs would occur Dec. 31. Is this a negotiating strategy by the city to get the union to cough up additional concessions on top of what they’ve already given in recent years? Probably. If they cannot come to terms on saving these jobs several of the workers have bumping rights.

No political appointees are on the list.

The city, nearly six months into the budget year, is trying to close a multi-million dollar deficit with an eye on the next budget year that looks ugly. Finch hopes to complete a regional wastewater treatment authority that would provide upwards of a one-shot $40 million infusion to help his election year budget.



  1. Yes FINCH IS THE GRINCH WHO NOT ONLY STOLE CHRISTMAS BUT STOLE AND IS STEALING THE TAXPAYERS’ MONEY!!! He gives new positions and raises to his friends and lays off who doesn’t benefit him or his election. Please Lennie, get a list of all new hires since Finch came into office and I bet they all still have jobs, while veteran employees get the axe!!!

  2. You can lay some of this at the feet of the common council. They passed this budget knowing there was an $8 million deficit. They passed this budget knowing that not one yes that’s right not one budget was cut at the budget hearings.
    I am sure every department submitted a budget for more than they needed plus they anticipated cuts coming from the budget committee. Surprise the budget committee did not cut squat.
    Interesting 10 council people are presently at a league of city meetings in Denver. Guess who picked up the tab for that one, we did.
    Hey Bill how do you justify layoffs when you are spending money on bullshit such as 5,000 new recycling bins, painting the new Mad Vacs green in fact why did you buy these new machines when we are $8 million in debt? The city is a shithouse why buy something you don’t use?

  3. This will continue to happen as long as it’s only talked about among city workers and this blog. This information has to somehow get out into the community. People have to get outraged in this city about what’s going on. The veterans need to make a public stink about their driver being yanked. Services to the community will continue to be cut as “the worker bees’ get laid off one by one. The retribution for speaking your mind just gets you the door. It’s a complete disgrace.

    1. nothingshocks // Dec 2, 2010 at 11:14 am
      to your point

      I can tell you one little doggy out there who didn’t lie down and die after his encounter with a Mayor unable to handle the truth.

      Like others before him, he knows that most of those who “speak their mind” have reached a point of frustration because they start wondering out loud if anybody else sees the ship sinking and the damn captain painting his cabin green …

      Have a look at:
      and I think you’ll get an idea that the Registrar’s Office is not just the one office in the City with a problem …
      If you are willing to accept that Baltimore could clean up its act with CitiStat, then Bridgeport can do the same. The process had started …
      Political will and commitment can get this done.
      We just need the right leadership.
      Could we agree on that?

    1. Then letters to the Editor have to be written. TV stations have to be called. People have to talk about it out loud when they are out in the bars, restaurants, doctors’ offices, grocery stores, town meetings. Believe me, outside the town it’s talked about. BIG Problem is if you work for the City and you are caught talking, bye bye.

  4. Now Playing! The Finch Who Stole Christmas! Co-sponsored in part by Steal Point.

    BTW–How’s that Seaview Plaza thing working out? Tate George will be known as Tain’t George!

    1. Grin Ripper // Dec 2, 2010 at 11:23 am
      Responding with a question …

      Wait, wait, do we have the poinsettias to look forward to again this year?

      Will Lynn get a dozen placed in front of her desk just like Lisa did in the CAO’s office? Do you think her office didn’t look like a funeral parlor with all the flowers?

      Let’s just see if we go there again this year with the poinsettias.

      I don’t need to tell anyone but we’re losing our intellectual core in this City government of ours with the continuation of these unnecessary layoffs of really capable people with good institutional knowledge of the City and its mission.

      The message rings hollow that the City is trying to balance the budget. Because all the unnecessary take-home City cars continues as a fiscal abuse. The promise was made to the public in early 2009 that this practice would stop. Just like all the other promises made by this Mayor, it hasn’t been kept. The dollars lost is inexcusable.
      In the meantime, the Stealpoint developers will be subsidizing a lot of Holiday cheer at 999 Broad Street this year …
      Don’t you think?

  5. Carolanne it’s 9 months to the primary and 11 months to the general election. Does John Gomes plan on ever speaking in public and letting us voters know what he stands for? Please don’t tell me to read the blog I did that months ago. I appreciate your blogging but I am not thinking about voting for you.
    CitiStat as far as I am concerned is a failure and you know why it’s a failure? No one knows what you and Gomes allegedly found in your time in that department. So not seeing any changes it’s time to get rid of that department lock stock & barrel. Since Gomes left it has been nothing more than a dumping ground for the politically connected.
    Before you get on your high horse you and Gomes may have found a lot to correct in your study of city departments but if you 2 are the only ones who know then it means squat.

  6. I work in a city dept that works closely with OPED Planning. I can tell you that you will not find more seasoned professionals than Sam Shaw and Lynn Haig. They are smart, well educated loyal employees with knowledge gained through years of experience. That kind of knowledge cannot be replaced. This administration is very stupid if they think they can lay off people like Lynn and Sam and replace them with inexperienced kids like Kelly in Community Development and Alanna Kabel’s son’s friend who she just hired (illegally without posting the position). Too many depts are staffed with inexperienced people which is why the city is in such bad shape.

    1. Harley76
      Excellent Post. Haig and Shaw are superb city employees. This is the worst example of decision-making. I know there is a huge budget gap but these decisions cut at the core of the dedicated skilled and productive city workforce. Even if they survive this reduction in force they will never trust their employer. Nobody treats the job the same if they are used as pawns.

  7. CC tell John we will support him if he has substance he has to come out and tell us what he found out about these clowns what he recommended to do because it touched some spots they did not want to be found out what does he have to lose, he is a successful person who is comfortable in his own skin and does not owe anyone anything he should keep it that way because if you sleep with dogs you get fleas. Make no deals with the devil whoever he may be.

  8. I also heard they walked an employee out of the bldg because her dept head asked her to do something the dept head is required to do by state law the employee explained that she couldn’t do it legally so Dawn the interim finance dir called employee relations to escort her out and we thought Feeney was gone he lives inside Dawn, ignorance breeds ignorance.

    1. Dawn takes her orders from Mayor Sherwood. He has always wanted to take over the Finance Dept and now he has. There are no checks and balances. It doesn’t matter if it is right or wrong, it is the rule according to Sherwood.

  9. I can say this right now I am pissed at all the politicians. They are all keeping quiet on this massacre. Caruso and Gomes and anyone else thinking of running for mayor your silence is deafening. This tells me you all have NBA (no balls at all). Our city employees are getting screwed while the political shitheads keep their jobs and you say nothing. John take what you learned while the head of CitiStat and shove it. It means nothing. You all are waiting for the right time to speak out I know it’s too early in the year to speak out, well as far as I am concerned when you all finally do speak out it will mean Zero, Zilch, Nada, nothing, Squat. Do you all understand that? You should be fighting for these workers who in many cases are the best and the brightest and we are losing them.
    The council I don’t have time to go them but I have a question. How many on the council who work for the city or who has a relative working for the city got laid off. Zero, Zilch, Nada, nothing, Squat.

    1. TC you are 100% correct. The city employees need a hero right now. That can be Gomes or Caruso or both but they need someone to fight for them. The city is being run by Dumb and Dumber while the workers are being canned, the average citizen has no clue and most of the city council is in Colorado on the taxpayers’ dime. Gomes and Caruso know what’s going on but they remain silent. What is up with that?

  10. These people who got laid off have bumping rights. So they just might be bumping some of the mayoral hires of the LIUNA union. Could one of the mayor’s greeters get bumped? Hmmm … How about the overpaid receptionist from labor? They do have less seniority than some of those who were just laid off. This could get interesting.

  11. bpt guy: how can someone be walked out like that? Isn’t this all a little over the top??? I was told everyone on the layoff list have nowhere to bump–something else a little over the top too.

  12. CHS be careful. Finance may have walked someone out the door, but an employee in OPED said it like it is and is now going to be ‘disciplined.’ Guess he too was disloyal. I’m not sure this blog is even safe anymore, if you are an employee in need of your job.


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