Tuning In To Johnny Fabs

I spent a couple of hours with Johnny Fabs on Tuesday watching him push buttons, play with knobs, chat with a producer through an earpiece.

When John Fabrizi isn’t working his full-time gig, chief of the Board of Education Adult Ed program, he fills in every now and then as guest host on WICC chatting with his audience about all things Bridgeport. I once described Fabs as a ball of energy, a porchetta sandwich in one hand, a cigarette in the other. Nothing’s really changed, he loves food (me too) and still sucks on his cigs (outside during radio breaks) to occupy his time.

A guest on his show, I watched Fabs juggle an assortment of interviews on WICC including Gov. Jodi Rell, with whom he had a good relationship as mayor, and Superintendent of Schools John Ramos who is now his boss. Fabs’ wife Mary also called in to ask a hypnotist guest how her hubby should kick his pack-a-day Kools, the same guest I asked on the air if she could hypnotize the 20-member City Council into sanity.

Fabs, born on Christmas Day 53 years ago, wasn’t interested in delving into the guts of Bridgeport politics during the holiday season. He wanted to keep it light on the air. Yet, prodded by a question, he spoke about the need for strong communication between the mayor’s office and schools’ chief.

Johnny Fabs, now more than two years removed from office, loved being mayor. He’s certainly not nearly as stressed as when he was mayor, nor as stout at 40 or 50 pounds lighter, but there’s a piece of him that wants to get back in the game. Whether he will depends on several factors including Mayor Bill Finch’s next budget cycle and his political support.

Just think of the possibilities for 2011. State Rep. Chris Caruso, twice denied the city’s top job, will make another play. Maybe Fabs. Who else? Could a Ganim jump in? Perhaps former Superior Court Judge Carmen Lopez? A player to be named later?

But before that, in just three months, Democratic Town Chair Mario Testa will seek reelection among the 90-member Town Committee. Any Town Committee primaries on the horizon? If so, will they be led by former Dem chief John Stafstrom? Stay tuned.

From Mayor Finch

Holiday Schedule for Trash and Recycling Pickup; Transfer Station Announced

The City’s Public Works department announces the following schedule for the week of December 21 and December 28.

For week of December 21: Trash and recycling pickups for this week through Thursday (Christmas Eve) will occur as scheduled.

Due to the Christmas holiday, trash and recycling pickups scheduled for Dec. 25 will occur on Saturday, Dec. 26.

For week of Dec. 28: Trash and recycling pickups for Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, Dec. 28, 29, 30 and 31 will occur as scheduled.

Due to the New Year’s holiday, trash and recycling pickups scheduled for Jan. 1 will occur on Saturday, Jan. 2.

The city’s Transfer Station located at 475 Asylum St., will be closed on Friday, Dec. 25, and will reopen on Saturday, Dec. 26 at 7 a.m. It also will close on Friday, Jan. 1, 2010 and will reopen on Saturday, Jan. 2 at 7 a.m.

The Transfer Station winter hours are as follows: Monday through Friday 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and Saturday 7 a.m. to 12 noon.



  1. Could the elections in 2011 be the year of the retreads vs the mayoral imposter?
    Let’s see we potentially have former mayor Fabrizi as a candidate. Former mayor Ganim as a candidate. Perennial candidate Caruso as a candidate.
    We have former now unemployed Judge as a potential candidate.
    We also have a man who sits in the mayor’s chair now wanting to give the mayor’s job a shot.
    God help us.

  2. I can’t believe it, just when you think you have run out of topics the council acts and gives one another topic. Unbelievable.
    We are going to reduce the taxes on new condo being built on Seaview Ave by 59%. That’s great news for the rest of us taxpaying citizens who get zero help paying our taxes. We are now going to pick up the tab for the added services these units will require such as trash pickup, increased school registrations and police protection.
    May I suggest that if the developer is having trouble selling these units that he step back and realize that the country is in trouble as are the banks and mortgages are hard to come by. If you can’t sell what you built don’t build any more for the present time.
    To the mayor & Council case-by-case basis my ass. What are you doing for the hardworking family man that already owns a home and is having trouble making mortgage and tax payments? NOTHING.
    What are you doing to help the family trying to fight off foreclosure? Nothing.
    There are 6 houses in my immediate neighborhood for sale why not reduce their taxes by 59% so that they can sell their homes?
    I will tell you and the council why not. The damn city can’t afford to do this PERIOD. Stop granting special interests and favored council people all these favors. Govern the damn city fairly. To Baker and Holloway there are more sections of the city besides the East Side.
    One has to wonder what the hell is going on. The unions give back and give back because they are told there are tough economic times. The city keeps hiring politically connected people to bullshit jobs or jobs that they make openings for. Tax breaks for condos on the East Side. The list goes on and on and it does not seem that anyone gives a shit.

  3. I listened for 2 hours being hypnotized by the traffic on the parkway. Fabs must be on whole wheat pasta non al dente. Yesterday’s show was a little mushad with everybody stepping on one another. Too much of a love fest for me. Former Pilsbury Doughboy gushing over Betty Crocker of a Governator. Everybody now loves Lowell sounds like a ReRun re-run of What’s Happenin’!

    Here’s the deal on the Low-est one. With one fell swoop of the pen he cut out the state’s, and more importantly Bridgeport’s, ability to get a casino.

    Mustang Jodi should go to the tribe and re-work slot compact deal. Auden Grogins is on GAE committee that has control over slot compact. The Mohegans are circling the wagons around Connecticut’s borders. They recently purchased 190 acres of land in Palmer Mass. They have gaming interests in Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania gaming is prepared to give the state of New York $250 million up front just for the rights for a racing/slots operation at Aqueduct Raceway. Shinecocks are poised to open a slot palace on their 800 acre facility out in the Hamptons. Empire Slots facility at Yonkers Raceway.

    Here’s how you work the deal. Approach cash-strapped Foxwoods, amending the slot compact, and make them a 25% partner with the State and Scientific Games. Cut Mohegan out of the equation. After all we don’t receive any residuals on their other operations. Flood the state with ten-thousand slots situated at two of the simulcast facilities in Bridgeport and Bradley Airport. Demand major up-front money from Scientific Games aka Auto-Tote in the amount of $100 million to help balance budget.

    Don’t worry about lower Fairfield County traffic types because if it will help their personal cooked pocketbooks they will be ready to pony up support.

    Move the Ferry over to Seaview Ave and the Shoreline Star and Bridgeport could become the “Shore Thing”!

  4. “town committee,” I agree with your assessment but not with the portion about councilmen Baker and Holloway from the 139th District. Baker and Holloway were looking out their district. Have the councilmen in your district asked for help?

    Andy, you asked some good questions but this mayor will not address them.

  5. Ron: My council people never ask for anything that’s why we have squat going on up here.
    As far as Baker & Holloway go I like both of them but they weren’t really asking for their constituents they were asking for the developer. In either case I understand what they wanted.
    While it’s true council people advocate for their districts they also have to think about how it (what ever it may be) affects the entire city.
    Lowering the taxes 59% does place a burden on the taxpayers from other districts. Why push for more condos when in this market you can’t sell the ones you built?
    Ron no one in office wants to address these questions. Why should they when they don’t give a damn what the people of Bridgeport think? The only time they will care is at election time. Then they will lie and promise us the world. Still waiting for my $600 rebate from the city.

  6. *** Can’t blame the 2 councilmen from the East End for trying to help move new developing real estate in their district. Also, this is not the “first” time the city has come up with these sales incentives to help developers sell their investments & get the city’s side of possible revenue up & going. Problem I have & used to bitch about was how about some type of incentives for those residents or small city developers that have been in Bpt. through the good & bad times in general, why only for “new” incoming people, etc.? *** I missed the radio show but I’m sure Fabs was great as always & with Lennie as a Xmas sidekick, even better. It’s the time of year to be merry & brotherly so Fabs was not about to start throwing political daggers @ people especially if he’s got any plans for another possible run for Mayor! I would certainly vote for him with no hesitation on my part or Mr. Curwen or Mr. Caruso. All 3 have always been sincere stand-up guys with me, without question. *** Time will tell! ***

  7. O.I.B. Rumor Mill:

    Johnny Fabs & Lennie form a new combo, both determined to regain their positions in Bridgeport politics.

    Mario T. did it and now these two want to repeat the same feet. It’s one thing to have position and another thing to have it and lose it. But it’s a sign of The Great Ones to lose and then get it back!

    That’s what these guys wanna do. The pairing seems a near-perfect match of stunning showmanship and all-knowing political style. But it’s only a rumor …

    ps–Lennie was too polite. Fabs had strict orders not to get political on-air. WICC was exploiting his notoriety and not offering him a platform for grandstanding.

    You want a legit platform for grandstanding?

    How’s this?

    Merry Christmas from Local Eyes


  8. We had a lively discussion about the ferry moving from its current location to the East Side of Bridgeport on “Bridgeport Now” last night.

    Are you in favor of the ferry staying put in current location, if so, then contact us at bportnow@gmail.com

    We are seeking a balanced view and healthy debate on the issue. Joining the two city council people from the district was the director of Connecticut Community Boating.

    As for the document itself, on the table at the city council, upon review, I was surprised that there are so many city council signatures already in favor of the move, 11 have signed on so far. That, given that the city opposes it.

    Excerpt of proposed resolution …

    “Whereas, the study identified shortcomings of the existing terminal and staging area, including congested and confusing roadways with traffic backups approaching I-95 northbound and southbound especially during times of events at the Ballpark and Arena at Harbor Yard.

    Whereas, the study states that the preferred location for a new terminal would be on the north side of the harbor (East Side / East End of Bridgeport), resulting in operational efficiencies and improved traffic flow between I-95 and the ferry terminal.”

    As previously stated, until convinced otherwise, we are in favor of the move of the Bridgeport ferry to the more spacious East End area and to explore other uses for the current ferry building and dock.

  9. Nice low blow by the fabulous one while talking to George Estrada on WICC.

    Johnny tells George, “This mayor appreciates UB.” Ouch.

    Hey Lennie, what’s going on with that 3-ring circus called the Bpt BOE??? One day a Custodian is running the show, next day Bucky M is in, next day Bucky is out.

    Are Ramos and Henry practicing for retirement as Abbott and Costello??? What a JOKE.

    1. I hope you’re wrong about Bucky in the BOE. He’s the one who raised the Congress Street bridge and left it up to rust. It functioned pretty well before that but Bucky felt that if he let it rust in an open position then the state and/or feds would give Bpt money to replace it. WRONG! Bucky needs to stay where he is–in the kitchen at Testo’s.

      1. Great, just what we need in Bpt.

        Another hangeroner who likes the booze. He’ll fit in well, same old shit, different day, there will never be real, fresh change in the BOE.

        1. Morale could not be any worse I’ve been told in the BOE than it is at this moment. Maybe Bucky can get everyone free passes to Testos, and that way everyone can join in the Christmas spirits all year ’round.

  10. I for one would love to see Mr. Fabrizi be on WICC full time … he bleeds Bpt … has great guests … he is entertaining, way more so than who is on the air now … has a great respect for the police and firemen of the city. He has to have enough years to retire from that joke they call a BOE … do it WICC.

    1. Fabrizi is entertaining, I’ll give him that. Better than those old farts WICC usually hires. And he does know the political issues. I look forward to hearing more from him in 2010.

  11. “town committee,” I worked to get Chris Caruso elected mayor in the last election. After the fog lifts I will see who the candidates for mayor are. Andy, like you I’m still waiting for my $600 rebate from Mayor Finch, what are the chances that will happen?

  12. Thank you Mayor Finch for having a Christmas party today that excluded all of public works. Guess we’re not good enough for your party, maybe we’re too dirty for the Barnum Museum. Well listen up. Many of us live in Bridgeport and we vote. We will not forget this in 2011.

  13. harley76, the Christmas party was from 3:00pm to 5:00pm today @ Barnum Museum, and everyone was invited, including the employees from P.F.

    Before you use the username harley, go and buy one. Before you threaten to vote, go register. Before you blog, get a life!

  14. One thing the Majority can AGREE on is FINCH MUST GO! The issue is, who to replace him???

    The Local GOP is on life support and has no viable candidates.

    Fabrizi should not be an option.

    Ganim should stick to his family and move on.

    Caruso needs to just give it up.

    Carmen Lopez is just not right for the Mayor’s position … But should be considered as a member of the new Admin, perhaps City Attorney …

    Andres Ayala, could be a good choice for Mayor … It’s hard to tell with someone who hides under a rock and is never heard or seen … And who would be pulling the strings??? Uncle Tito, Stafstrom or the Girlfriend??? Some hell of a tug of war!

    Curwen and Silva, please what a joke, wannabes with no hope …

    This City desperately needs a new fresh face for Mayor. Someone with no political strings attached, with making Bridgeport the best place on Earth as a priority, but never neglecting its residents. Could this person possibly exist … Hopefully someday we will know … Until then, we might be stuck with some poor, not so great, mediocre selections …


Leave a Reply