What does $500,000 Buy in Stratford?

12Jun08

1 Mayor @ $ 90,000
2 Assistants to the Mayor @ $ 110,000
1 Secretary to the Mayor @ 36,033
1 Legal Secretary @ $ 58,808
1 Chief Administrative Officer @ $ 90,000
1 Grant Writer @ $ 66,917
1 Administrative Analyst @ $ 55,863

Plus Health Insurance, Tuition, 401K contribution, Company Car, vacation, sick time and personal days. Sometimes he even shows up at the office.

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153 Responses to “What does $500,000 Buy in Stratford?”

  1. 1 1george1

    Are the two assistants to the mayor and all of the other duties,
    one and the same person?

    Just as I was able to get the 1099s of the Town Attorneys and all of
    the Pension information because of the F. O. I., I believe the W-2
    of Government employees are also available?

    At the BUDGET workshop, the Mayor pointed out during his time
    and the School Superintendent pointe out in her time, that there
    were positions (no dirty minds) that were unfilled for several months,
    which lowered the line item spent in a given year, but the larger
    increase of a following year reflected the full year anticipated cost
    vs. the partial year actual compensation.

  2. 2 jezebel282

    George,

    No.

    Except for the “Acting” Grants Writer, Heather Habelka. She is also one of the “assistants”.

  3. According to the Stratford Town Directory by Department (which you have to fish around to find on the Town’s website), the employees (in addition to Jim Miron) of the Mayor’s office are listed as:

    Gina Connor (Executive Ass’t to the Mayor – TEMP);
    Heather Habelka (Assistant to the Mayor);
    Ashley Haydu (Assistant to the Mayor);
    Maureen Kendrick (Administrative Assistant); and
    Heather Siano (Community and Government Liason).

    This directory was prepared 10/11/2007 and appears to not have been updated in quite some time since Mark Haddad is still listed as the CAO, and Heather Habelka and Heather Siano are the same person.

  4. 4 jezebel282

    So how many assistants does it take to change a mayor?

  5. Oh, the visual!!!! Please don’t do that again!

  6. 6 1george1

    Heather Habelka and Heather Siano are the same person?

    DO they or does she get TWO W – 2s and/ or 1099s, per Year?

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    PCS,

    You are sooooooooooooo right about the mental video tape.
    Yuuugh!

    Hmmmm.
    Gargle won’t work to rinse away the image.
    Shower won’t work to rinse away the image.

    The good news is I am getting close to
    the age where ahlsheimers will set in.

    Darn it PCS & Jeze, I have to go to Town Hall Friday 7:00 pm to join
    politically appointed people where there are NO UNAFFILIATED as
    WITNESSES, and now I have this image to top it off… Ow!

    After blogging ABOUT CONSTITUTION with FREEDOM,
    I am subjected to
    UNUSUAL
    and
    CRUEL

    PUNISHMENTS :)

  7. What Did $500,000 Buy You In Stratford In November 2005?

    Town Manager @ $80,000
    Executive Secretary who served the Town Manager and the Asst. @ $50,000
    Asst. to Town Manager @ $60,000
    Health Director @ $95,000
    CDA/Economic Development Director @ $75,000
    Community Services Director @ $75,000
    Insurance Supervisor @ $65,000

    Summary: Salaries for 5 major Department Heads, 1 Executive Secretary and I Supervisor.

    PS – All of these positions are now defunct.

  8. 8 jezebel282

    Cyclops,

    Let’s not forget that much less gets done for more money now.

  9. 9 1george1

    Welcome back Cyclops.

    May I suggest a Letter to the Editor with the comparison?
    The CT. POST has the widest circulation.
    Many Stratford people read the Star.
    The Bard is the most likely to print your Letter to the Editor.

    You can e-mail, fax, mail or drop of your letter.
    Contact information is on the same page as existing letters to the editor.
    It also has the rules and limits.

    You can FOI information for Individual 1099s or W-2s.

    Like Burturla has made over $ 500,000 each of the last 2 years.
    Can’t even BUY Burturla for $ 500,000… :) :(

  10. 10 1george1

    My detailed blog, came back that I was logged out.
    It addressed the area 51 players

  11. 11 jezebel282

    George,

    I can’t help you. Nothing got caught in spam.

  12. Jezebel,
    About what gets done and who is accountable is another whole story! I fogot to add in my posting that all of those named showed up for work each and every day and worked well past the 37.5 hours each week.

  13. 13 jonbest

    Well I was looking around and found this. Why did our political people find us this money when we owned SAEP?
    Just food for thought. Where was our grantwriter or congressperson? How did we miss this boat?

    “Shays Announces Moolah For Bridgeport, See Shays Release Below:

    Washington, D.C. – The City of Bridgeport will receive $500,000 in a supplemental Brownfields grant from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for community-wide cleanup of hazardous materials, Congressman Christopher Shays and Mayor Bill Finch announced Thursday.

    ”The Brownfields Program is one of the smartest and most important tools our urban areas have for revitalization. It helps put property and people back to work by spurring economic development and generating property tax revenue from previously idle sites,” Shays explained.

    ”The $500,000 the City of Bridgeport will receive will help assess and clean up contaminated sites throughout the community, making these areas safer for community residents,” Shays continued. “This funding, combined with the $200,000 grant Bridgeport received in April is great news for Bridgeport and I am grateful for this assistance.”

    ”The City of Bridgeport contains many brownfields, which can cause health concerns, perpetuate blight in the surrounding community and deprive our city of critical funds in the form of property taxes,” said Mayor Finch. “One of my administration’s top priorities is to remediate and revitalize these vacant properties. This funding is very important to our efforts to clean up our city and reduce property taxes for our residents. I thank Congressman Shays for his continued support of the Brownfields program, as well as our City’s Central Grants Office for securing these funds.”

    The Brownfields Program empowers states, communities and other stakeholders in economic development to work together to prevent, assess, clean, and reuse Brownfields. Shays helped establish the Brownfields program in 1995, when he and former Congressman Jim Maloney introduced the Brownfield Economic Revitalization Act, to provide financial assistance to communities for the clean up of contaminated industrial sites to return them to productive use. The bill subsequently became law.”

    What do you think

    Jonathan Best

  14. What the hell is Heather doing to earn her Acting Grants Coordinator title and supplement salary? The woman who was our coordinator resigned to go to work for Bridgeport. And Rosa – she’s too busy working for Obama. Nothing ever goes right for us.

  15. 15 jonbest

    We could have used that money. These are the types of things that are frustrating to me. This money was ideal for the SAEP. Once again we are left to stand around with our mouths open and still no significant economic development.

  16. 16 gforrester

    Jon I don’t believe that we would have applied for grant money to study the SAEP since the clean up cost is going to be absorbed by the preferred developer, be it either the former developer Team Stratford or the new Developer Area 51 (if that ever happens). The Town has previously applied for grant fund for brownfield sites and were were funded in excess of $100,000 for the Raymark properties, of which most of those funds went towards the Superfund Recovery Committee that was charged with developing the reuse concept back in 2003. That plan still exists today but because of State and Federal bickering that clean up has not progressed so I’m not sure receiving grant funds would have made one difference to the SAEP situation.

    I agree with you that there has been little or no appreciable economic development in Stratford, and very few that provided good quality jobs so that our citizens can afford to make a decent living wage. Maybe what the charter revision commission should have looked at was seperating the Economic and Community Development Commission into seperate entites so that we might be able to get some coheasive plans rather than a knee jerk ratification of the proposal to create a full exchange at exit 33 in hopes of supporting a retail center that willl pour more traffic into an already congested Barnum Avenue/Ferry Blvd. corridor. When I proposed Tax Enterprise Zones to try and compete with the likes of Shelton , Fairfield and Milford I was told it was “to complicated” and the “Tax Partnership Committee” can deal with it.

    Let’s not just focus in on the SAEP as the golden savior but how about we look to partner with private enterprise to develope the Mobil Chemical Facility – Ross & Roberts – or the several other light industrial properties that exist that could generate management and skilled labor positions.

    Gavin

  17. 17 gforrester

    $500K could buy

    Let’s remember we had a Town Manager and the Assistant to the Town Manager (most recently Feeney and Branyan as his assistant elivated to the position) and a Secretary to the Town Manager & Legal Secretary long before charter revision.

    Mayor @ $ 90,000 – or Town Manager
    1 Assistants to the Mayor @ $ 65000 or Town Manager
    1 Secretary to the Mayor @ 36,033 or Town Manager
    1 Legal Secretary @ $ 58,808 – Already had a legal secretary and when the positin was reduced to part time in I believe 2003 it was restored the next year because the work was being done by the Town Attorney’s firm at more than the cost of in house.

    These are the new positions and as we all know the rationale behind the grant writer is that that individual will bring in more than the cost of their salary & benefits.

    It’s not the position but whom the individuals that are chosen to fill the positions perform.

    1 Chief Administrative Officer @ $ 90,000
    1 Grant Writer @ $ 66,917
    1 Administrative Analyst @ $ 55,863

    Gavin

  18. 18 jonbest

    Oh Boy!
    I am getting scared. I agree with tax enterprise zones as a mechanism to stimulate economic growth.

    My point about the monies was about missed opportunity that apparently was not on the radar or even considered. This is the problem.

    I think Raymark is a significant issue that effects the whole town not just the people who live in close proximity. The SAEP was a major project that would have a significant impact on our communities economy and potentially lowered taxes. Since you are not sure it would have helped to get the grant perhaps you are not sure it would have been in our interest to secure the money instead of Bridgeport? This is opportunity lost once again. We need to push the envelope forward and insure that these projects are moving forward. The Army and GSA now have control (something I warned people would happen). That lack of activity or oversite as a Town caused this.

    What about the review of Shakespere and consulting on construction costs. What is the delay. This is history repeating itself.

    I believe in this Town and want all these projects to move forward successfully. I am not interested in debates that go no were and serve no one. This is and has been my frustration with local government.

    The topic is “What does $500,000 buy?” My response is that $500,000 where ever it is applied could have greatly assisted our community in dealing with brownfield issues. We as stuck in a morass of pontification and no results. We need active people to get involved and find dollars like Congressman Shays did.

    Jonathan Best

  19. 19 jezebel282

    Mr. Best, Mr Forrester,

    You are both missing the point. This town has been under the control of Miron and the DTC for 2.5 years. There is no desire to do anything that benefits anyone. It’s really simple. You don’t have to think hard about it.

    If the Council does not send the Charter back to the CRC for an independent Town Attorney and Hiring/Firing oversight (or at least rules like qualifications) we, the citizens, will suffer a Town government dominated by political appointments and incompetence for decades.

    How many more examples do you guys need?

  20. 20 gforrester

    Jez the Town has not been under the control of the DTC since the Council has had a Republican Majority. If you look at the appointments from the Council to committees or as Alt. to land use boards you will find that they are predominately Republican appointments. I get you – you don’t like the Job that Miron has done but my question is do you think you would like the job that anyone does? Unfortunately politics is such that you will never achieve nervana where everyone gets appointed based upon merritt and qualifications since it takes so much money that needs to be raised to fund a political campaign there will always be someone trying to call in a favor.

    You and I both know there is not enought votes on the council to send the charter back so what you need to do is concentrate on who you support in the 2009 election and get a committment from them to appoint a Town Attorney that is not on either political town committee, establishes some criteria and qualifications, and is either an unaffiliated voter that has not contributed to the political campaign or from out of town (no not next door in Bridgeport either) without political ties to the inner working of Stratford.

    Gavin

  21. 21 1george1

    Jeze,

    I had to log back in, to post this.
    However, I wrote a blog before and after I finished, I hit submit.
    THEN I was told I had to log in. ???
    Jeze, that is beyond your control.

    —————————————————————————————–

    Gavin can confirm, if he chooses to, that I have been pushing the GRANT
    WRITER for the last 2 BUDGET sessions and before that for several years.

    Gavin can also confirm, one of Bridgeport’s Grant writers, WAS Stratford’s
    Town Grant writers.

    Jon has picked up on that theme.
    Gavin, Jon, and myself have different opinions.
    However, I and Jon have exchanged compliments in the past.
    I have given Gavin compliments and credit when / where due.
    And, believe it or not, I render criticism… ah … on occasion.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Jon & Gavin,
    My uncle / godfather / best friend passed away in Sept 1997.
    For many years he had a warehouse office, near the railroad tracks
    in Black Rock across the tracks from the Bullard / Movie complex.

    In his office, he had a very nice picture of him shaking hands with
    Governor Ella Grosso, when he was moving INTO the REMINGTON
    ENTERPRIZE ZONE, a few miles from GE Boston Avenue and near the
    old Rocky Voccola’s Tire Store (where my parents had their 1st Apt)
    (not Remington wood, but the former Remington Gun Factory)

    Jon & Gavin,
    I think that Enterpize Zone is about 50 years OLD and still vacant.

    Even AVCO & SHAKESPEARE are NOT that BAD ….

    YET

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Is / Was Willinger involved in
    Team Statford # 1
    Team Statford # 2
    Team Statford # 3

    Are Norm, Burturla, Miron, and other on BOTH SIDES of certain
    Economic Development issues?

    Hey GAVIN
    Is ANYONE being PAID an ANNUAL FEE by Stratford for AVCO, other than
    Burturla having an excuse to clock Billable hours?

    What ever happened to Transparency on the Town Attorney hours I asked
    the Town Council, Town Attorney, Mayor, C.A.O., and Finance Dept?

    -

    I have tried to warn people about the FBI might actually have to bag someone
    to save face for what the Feds, States, and Locals have done to Stratford and
    Bridgeport. The Feds & Statte tend to have their own people ready to take
    over the SWAG!

  22. 22 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester,

    Please don’t consider my criticism of Miron my only point of view. When a politician does something for the benefit of us mere taxpayers, they will see praise heaped upon them by me. I applauded Irene Cornish and Ben Branyan for their creative and effective action.

    Unfortunately, not a single poster has been able to point to any achievement by this mayor in 2.5 years.

    It would take too much space to quibble about who was in control of the Council for the last 2.5 years. It is clear that Council leadership was ineffective at best in opposing Miron’s antics. You couldn’t even pass an ordinance prohibiting firearms in Town Hall and within 1,000 ft of a school.

    We both know that we are not speaking of Commission or committee appointments. We are speaking of operational, paid positions in this town.

    As for candidates I will support those with integrity, ethics and a deep desire to benefit taxpayers.

  23. 23 1george1

    Could it be that Jeze is really Irene Cornish or Ben Branyan? 8)

    “As for candidates I will support those with integrity, ethics and
    a deep desire to benefit taxpayers.”

    Jeze, you give me latitude in my blogs, does the above me I will
    get your vote for mayor, IF I may be so presumptuous? :)
    You are switching from ROCKI and PCS? ;)

  24. 24 jezebel282

    LOL!

    George,

    Rocki is anti-canine. That loses my vote.

    If only someone could get Sperling drunk enough to sign those papers…..

  25. 25 1george1

    Gavin’s advice about 2009 is solid, based on known factors and personnel.

    I have always contended there are outside personnel and factors rigging
    the game. And, too many of the player feel the need to cheat, even when
    playing solitaire.

    The 1991 referendum was 17 years ago. The PE “nut” pretenders are obsessed
    with reversing past actions and trends. What they started in 1987, they have
    bought and paid with bloodmoney and war gamed tactical puppetry.

    The book “The Death of a Republic” was about the ways and means which Caesar
    is purported to use massive gradual corruption of the population, army, and the government office holders to make the Republic UNWORKABLE.

    So too has the gradational suborning of the USA system, using useful idiots of:
    > Fabian and ONE WORLDER ideologues;
    > Political science socialists / marxists / leninist;
    > Wannabees of the Ancient Orders and Iconic touchstone;
    > Wilfull religious heresies and perversions;
    > hobbsian magic / hollow pyramid schemes / monte shell games;
    > baseless alchemy;
    > Greed;
    > Compromised and Dependents;
    > Turf mongers;
    > Slaves in chains of command;
    > Practicioners of obsolete, yet too effective plans and scripts;

  26. 26 jezebel282

    George,

    Gavin’s advice is not that solid. It is clear that the “mandate” for a strong mayor did not include kingship. Political appointments do not make a mayor strong. Leadership and vision do.

    There may not be enough votes to send the Charter back to the CRC today. However, it is up to the Council leadership (and I include Gavin Forrester and Mike Henrick in that leadership) to have the fortitude and vision to LEAD the Council and direct the CRC to eliminate political hiring and firing from positions that we fund. We have a right to expect qualified, talented and effective personnel in positions that we fund.

    We have even more right to expect legal opinions issued by a Town Attorney to represent the best interests of the entire Town, not just a personal attorney for a mayor. The only solution to avoiding unlimited billing and creating effective representation is a salaried position with a defined contract setting terms and conditions of employment.

    Granted, most of Stratford’s citizens have very busy lives. In these harsh times, it is necessary to focus on career and somehow getting one’s family through the storm. Not much energy is left to give time to the Town political committees to force change. But, we are begging this Council to take positive action to remove politics from at least the operational portion of the Town. It takes courage and willpower. I understand those are qualities not usually found in a politician. Especially one in Stratford. But the time has come to vote for an issue that actually means something to voters, even if they do not understand its importance.

  27. 27 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester, Mr. Best:

    According to the recently received “Our Schools” newsletter published by the Stratford Board of Education, “During the past year, Naylor estimates that the system has been able to attain about $3 million in grants…by meeting set requirements and following application guidelines.”

    Pat Naylor? Didn’t Miron fire her?

    And who is in charge of grants for the Town now? Heather Habelka? How many grant applications has she written? The correct answer is “none”.

    Mr. Forrester, since you are a currently elected councilmen, I must ask the question: WTF?

  28. 28 1george1

    Jeze,
    If you have the March 3 CT. POST, they published my letter to the editor
    about the selection process of the Charter Revision Commission by the
    Town Council.

    I was told by one of the CT. POST personnel it was one of the better letters
    he had seen. (because it was packed with concise, appropriate, information
    and interrelated allusions as reference points.) (My arm hurts from patting
    myself on the back)

    The Town Council had resume come in by a Friday and selected the people
    on Monday.
    > No interviews
    > No requests about possible Conflicts of Interest.

    Mike Julian nominated the 3 – R
    Gavin nominated the 3 – D
    Tom Moore nominated the 3 – I

    Those were the chosen ones.

    The chairman was the Town Attorney when the 1991 Referendums shook
    the state politboro, with 42 % voter in an off peak year election and with
    27,000 signed petitioners, out of 28,000 – 29,000 Registered Voters.

    The same chairman is on the payroll of our beloved Mayor and Town Attorney
    whose compassion, unselfishness, and concern for the public benefit and
    public interest are non parallel.

    Line by line changes were effected, but towards whose benefit?

    Were Voters RIGHTS protected and enhanced?

    Or were both Charter Revision Commissions and Town Councils shameless
    Lugners, Guniffs, & Meirdas?

  29. 29 gforrester

    You couldn’t even pass an ordinance prohibiting firearms in Town Hall and within 1,000 ft of a school.

    No such ordinance was proposed so maybe that’s why it was never passed. I also believe that there was a florida supreme court case in which a florida business banned weapons from their private property and the court over turned a ban imposed by the lower court that the employee could restrict a person with a permit from carrying a loaded weapon. I believe that we copuld pass such an ordiance and then, when challanged in court by the NRA, we will once again hear the complaints of the citizens that we are spending too much money on legal fees.

  30. 30 gforrester

    Gavin can confirm, if he chooses to, that I have been pushing the GRANT
    WRITER for the last 2 BUDGET sessions and before that for several years.

    Gavin can also confirm, one of Bridgeport’s Grant writers, WAS Stratford’s
    Town Grant writers.

    George is absolutely correct on both points. He has been a solid supporter of the grants writer position and that our Grant’s writer when back to Bridgeport to assume a position that she origionally wrote a grant to fund.

    Jez – Heather has been in the position what a month now – you at leats have to give her an opportunity to fill the “acting” role.

  31. 31 gforrester

    eliminate political hiring and firing from positions that we fund.

    Jez – it doesn’t happen opn the Federal Level (Bush’s cabinet appointments & supreme Court Appointments) – It doesn’t happen on the State Level with Gubernatorial appointments – and they only way to get purely political appointments to stop locally is to either elect someone that never has to rely upon fundraising to win a campaign, have public financing of campaigns, or organize to work for someone that will make the promise to never appoint any members of a town committee to any post. Even political sciene “experts” tend to agree that political appointments are a reality and we can only demand that those appointments are qualified. Of course we will never agree on what “qualified” really means.

  32. 32 gforrester

    During the past year, Naylor estimates that the system has been able to attain about $3 million in grants…by meeting set requirements and following application guidelines.”

    I have a complete list of the grants in a pdf document, provided to me by Supt. Cornish, that does list in excess of $3 million in grants but in te narative some of the grants were previously awarded and are on a yearly payment schedule.

    As example there is an american history grant listed as “year three of a three year Federal Grant” so obviously that grant was previously applied for and the 3rd installment was received this year. As a result I can’t say that we applied for $3 Million in grants this year but one could reasonably say that a significant amount of grant funds were received this year.

  33. 33 freedomofspeach

    “No such ordinance was proposed so maybe that’s why it was never passed. I also believe that there was a florida supreme court case in which a florida business banned weapons from their private property and the court over turned a ban imposed by the lower court that the employee could restrict a person with a permit from carrying a loaded weapon. I believe that we copuld pass such an ordiance and then, when challanged in court by the NRA, we will once again hear the complaints of the citizens that we are spending too much money on legal fees.”

    Gavin, that is incorrect, many states that I travel in have numerous laws restricting where a person with concealed weapons permits cannot carry weapons, including New Hampshire where they ban them in town halls, and I believe North Carolina that bans them in Churches. Some of them have been litigated and most of them have stood the court challenge. Also, Fla has numerous restrictions on where you can carry a weapon, still do to this day. In Texas VA, and LA, there are signs on doors of places that restrict weapons, and it works fine.

    You talking about a ordinance banning firearms within so many feet of a public school, that’s already covered under a Federal Law I believe, and town hall. As I have said New Hampshire has banned them in town halls, and they are the “live free or die” state, so I am not sure why this has never been proposed. So you’re saying that I, as I have a CCP for Connecticut can walk into a TC meeting and no one cares? I have to check my weapon in at the courthouse, at the capital, at state buildings, I think New Haven City Hall, and at defense contractors. Guess if Stratford tried it would be overturned.

  34. 34 freedomofspeach

    Gavin, here are some of the restrictions that are valid. Not sure why you cant do what was proposed.

    Connecticut CWP Restrictions:

    Places off-limits when carrying:
    1. A permit to carry is required to carry a handgun outside one’s home (even though one may still be on his own property) or in any place of business in which one is merely an employee, not an owner or operator. A permit is also required to transport a handgun back and forth between one’s home and place of business, or to and from a range for target shooting.
    2. It is unlawful to possess a firearm on public or private elementary or secondary school property. This prohibition shall not apply to a person with a firearm carrying permit, with permission from school officials, or while traversing school property with an unloaded firearm for the purpose of gaining access to lands open to hunting or for other lawful purposes, provided entry is not prohibited by school officials.

    NC CWP Restrictions:

    Places off-limits when carrying:
    • Any location prohibited by federal law.
    • A law enforcement of correctional facility.
    • A building housing only state, federal or government offices.
    • A financial institution.
    • Any public or private school building or bus, campus, grounds, recreation area, athletic fields or other property used or owned by an educational institution.
    • Any assembly where a fee had been charged for admission or where alcoholic beverages are sold and consumed.
    • Any other premises where notice that carrying a concealed handgun is prohibited by the posting of a conspicuous notice or statement by the person in legal possession or control of the premises.
    • It shall be unlawful for any person participating in, affiliated
    with, or present as a spectator at any parade, funeral procession, picket line, or demonstration upon any public place owned or under the control of the state or any of its political subdivisions to willfully or intentionally possess or have immediate access to any firearm.

    Florida CWP Restrictions:

    Places off-limits when carrying:
    1. any place of nuisance as defined in s. 823.05
    2. any police, sheriff, or highway patrol station
    3. any detention facility, prison, or jail; any courthouse
    4. any courtroom*
    5. any polling place
    6. any meeting of the governing body of a county, public school district, municipality, or special district
    7. any meeting of the Legislature or a committee thereof
    8. any school, college, or professional athletic event not related to firearms
    9. any school administration building
    10. any portion of an establishment licensed to dispense alcoholic beverages for consumption*
    11. any elementary or secondary school facility
    12. any area technical center
    13. any college or university facility*
    14. inside the passenger terminal and sterile area of any airport*
    15. any place where the carrying of firearms is prohibited by federal law

    Texas CWP Restrictions:

    Places off-limits when carrying:
    Handguns and other weapons cannot be carried at schools or on school buses, at polling places, in courts and court offices, at racetracks, at secured airport areas or within 1,000 feet of the premises of an execution on the day of execution. The law also specifically prohibits handguns from businesses where alcohol is sold if more than half of their revenue is from the sale of alcohol for onpremises consumption, and from locations where high school, college, or professional sporting events are taking place. You man not carry handguns in hospitals or nursing homes, amusement parks, places of worship or at government meeting if signs are posted prohibiting them. Businesses also may post signs prohibiting handguns on their premises based on criminal trespass laws. See Texas Penal Code 46.032. (Judges, prosecuting attorneys, peace officers and parole offices should consult Texas Penal Code 46.15 regarding exemptions from the “no-carry” rules of the Penal Code.)

    NY CWP Restrictions:

    Places off-limits when carrying:
    It is a crime to possess any rifle, shotgun or handgun in or upon a building or grounds, used for educational purposes, of any school, college or university. It is lawful, however, to possess a rifle, shotgun or handgun in or upon the forestry lands, wherever located, owned and maintained by the State University of New York College of environmental science and forestry, without the written authorization of such educational institution.

    SC CWP Restrictions:

    Places off-limits when carrying:
    A concealed carry permit does not authorize the holder to carry a concealed weapon into a:
    1. Law enforcement office or facility.
    2. Detention or correctional facility.
    3. Courthouse or courtroom.
    4. Polling place on election days.
    5. Office of the governing body of a county, public school district, municipality, or special purpose district.
    6. School or college athletic event not related to firearms.
    7. Day care or pre-school facility.
    8. Place where federal law prohibits the carrying of firearms.
    9. Medical services facilities.
    10. Religious sanctuaries unless express permission is given by an appropriate official.
    11. Private property where prohibited by legal owner.

    Anyone in legal control of property may prohibit the carrying of concealable weapons by posting signs expressing the prohibition at each entrance to the building.

  35. 35 freedomofspeach

    Must been scared off by BM & D with another false opinion.

    Seattle City Restrictions and Court cases.

    But city officials say they have the same authority to ban guns as other landowners.
    “I wouldn’t quite say there is a constitutional right to carry a gun at every city-sponsored event or in many buildings that already exist throughout the state,” Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske said.

    Nickels contends a 2006 state Supreme Court ruling bolsters his standing. In the case, a private gun show organizer sued the city of Sequim for imposing restrictions on firearm sales at an event at the city convention center. The high court ultimately held that the state pre-emption law does not prohibit municipal property owners from imposing firearms conditions similar to those established by private property owners, said officials with the Washington Attorney General’s office.

    Also, state statutes specifically allow municipalities and local jurisdictions to restrict gun possession within city-owned stadiums and convention centers. And the Supreme Court has also upheld other local firearms rules, such as workplace restrictions, where the city is acting as an employer, the Attorney General’s office said.

  36. 36 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester:

    “Jez – Heather has been in the position what a month now – you at leats have to give her an opportunity to fill the “acting” role.”

    Why? She has been a mayoral “aide” for 2.5 years with no job description and no scheduled work hours. Absolutely nothing in her background (see her website) suggests she can even write a grant. Are you suggesting that anyone with no history or experience in a position can apply to the Town of Stratford and get a $66,000+/ year job just because they…errr….”know” Jim Miron?

    “Jez – it doesn’t happen opn the Federal Level (Bush’s cabinet appointments & supreme Court Appointments) – It doesn’t happen on the State Level with Gubernatorial appointments”

    This is an exceptionally weak argument, Mr Forrester. I am surprised at you. Even George W. has to obtain the advice and consent of the Senate before a cabinet position can be filled. Many don’t make the cut. Even on the Gubernatorial level there is at least a degree of vetting. In this Town, under this Charter, anyone, and I mean anyone, can be appointed to any position. Even people who have sexually harassed past employees and hired convicted felons.

    But maybe you are confused with how this Town works versus other governments.

    As for carrying concealed weapons in a public building, at public meetings and within 1,000 (more like 500) feet of a school, I think Freedom answered that one. Lemme know how carrying a pistol in an airport works out for you next time.

    Again, it takes guts and courage to change the status quo. Qualities rarely found in politicians running for office.

  37. 37 gforrester

    Why? She has been a mayoral “aide” for 2.5 years with no job description and no scheduled work hours. Absolutely nothing in her background (see her website) suggests she can even write a grant. Are you suggesting that anyone with no history or experience in a position can apply to the Town of Stratford and get a $66,000+/ year job just because they…errr….”know” Jim Miron?

    again Kez you are incorrect – I asked for and was supplied with a Job Description of “Assistant to the Mayor” so not only does one exist I will be happy to email you a copy of you provide me your email address. Or maybe if you like you can stop by Town Hall and they will give you a copy.

    So Jez tell me how many political appointments made on a state or federal level are REJECTED by the legislative body. Be real here Jez you want the Town Council to have the authority to say no to any individual appointed by the Mayor and that’s rediculious unless you have a full time legislative body that can go thru a complete vetting process. Under the Town Manager form of government we never had this but now because you can’t stand Miron you seem to be expounding that we need a weak mayorial form of government whereby the Mayor has little or no authority. Maybe the petition for the charter revision should have asked the question “should we change the form of government, again”?

    Again, it takes guts and courage to change the status quo. Qualities rarely found in politicians running for office.

    Jez name me a “politician” that you like please because I would love to see the model we are all being held up in comparision too. So you are generally saying that anyone that wants to volunteer to help their community by running for public office lacks the “guts and courage to change the status quo” because they don’t happen to agree with your opinion? It’s great to hide behind an alias and expound the gloom and doom that Stratford faces so again why don’t you just post your real name (Like George; Jon; Myself; Mike Reynolds e.t) – head on town to the Town Clerks office – pick up a petition – and RUN FOR OFFICE. If your not going to be part of the solution that your just part of the problem.

  38. 38 gforrester

    Freedom the main objection that I see is the 1000 Ft from a school. Here is the example. Stratford High School is within 1000 ft from commercial & residential properties in which the owner has the legal right to allow possession of firearms. The simple fact that the private property is within 1000 ft of a school would make the ordinance unenforcable, in my opinion and not being a lawyer, so why would the council propose an ordinance that clearly has the potential of violating another property owners right to have licensed (or even unlicensed firearms like a shot gun) on their premise? The cases that you sited do clearly state that the municipality does have the right to limit or ban firearms on property that is owned by that municipality, which I am not disputing, but again the proposed ordinance that I was addressing clearly had a deliniation of 1000 ft which would effect other property owners rights.

    Now if Jez wants to propose ordinance banning firearms on Town owned property to include school grounds and town hall that’s a different story. There you are talking about a specific ban on a premise. the ordinance would have to be crafted in such a way that it would allow for law enforcement and private security to be able to carry, but that would be an ordinance that would not have a specific distance to/from attached to it and would not effect adjacient property owners rights.

    Oh and Jez no need to be sarcastic – I was addressing the statement YOU made about within 1000 ft and how it affected the rights of property owners – Obviously there are bans on firearms being carried on an airplane – so it you want to get back to the debate on establishing a distance by which a municipality should attempt to ban fire arm possession from a public building I will be more than happy to have that conversation with you.

  39. 39 freedomofspeach

    Gavin, first as per my other posts, I am a constitutionalist, and believe in the right to bear arms. I have carried concealed weapons both personally and professionally. Although I think it’s very unprofessional for a mayor or any non law enforcement public official to be carting around firearms in his office where everyone seems to know, showing them to people, and keeping loaded weapons in his town owned vehicle, but I also think showing news people his tattoos was also in poor taste. But that’s another story.

    “The simple fact that the private property is within 1000 ft of a school would make the ordinance unenforcable”

    Its already a state law for school property, no need for an ordinance, and its federal law as a drug/gun free school zone. Again, have not read the USC or CGS on that, but now I am curious and will. As far as unenforceable, I believe the state already made it that you cannot carry a concealed (handgun) weapon on your outside property without a permit.

    “The cases that you sited do clearly state that the municipality does have the right to limit or ban firearms on property that is owned by that municipality, which I am not disputing, but again the proposed ordinance that I was addressing clearly had a deliniation of 1000 ft which would effect other property owners rights.”

    Again I cite drug/gun free school zone under federal law. What about zoning, it is common to take away someone’s personal property rights when they are too close to a school, church, ect. So its sounds like an excuse to me.

    But what we were asking is why won’t you or the TC ban firearms in town buildings and property? What you’re saying is that any town dump truck driver with a CT CWP can carry a firearm in his town truck, keep a loaded firearm in his locker, or since the Mayor can do it, carry it while mowing the lawns, or doing whatever they do. It seems a little strange, as your saying you cannot regulate it, but I am sure there is a town employee regulation that prohibits weapons on town property for employees. Guess the Mayor is exempt.

    “Now if Jez wants to propose ordinance banning firearms on Town owned property to include school grounds and town hall that’s a different story. There you are talking about a specific ban on a premise. the ordinance would have to be crafted in such a way that it would allow for law enforcement and private security to be able to carry, but that would be an ordinance that would not have a specific distance to/from attached to it and would not effect adjacient property owners rights.”

    Under State and Federal law you cannot ban a armed law enforcement officer, even a retired law enforcement officer, or in most cases a licensed private detective when on business, from carrying a weapon, so no need to craft that into any ordnance, you cant change statute. As far as security guards, you can have it so that you can specifically add people and classes for exemption. And no one here that I can see has said anything other than town property, the 1,000 feet was an example of a school zone, and as far as that, the Federal Law that covers that appears to take the rights you claim can’t be taken away. But I will look into it when I have the time.

    “Oh and Jez no need to be sarcastic – I was addressing the statement YOU made about within 1000 ft and how it affected the rights of property owners – Obviously there are bans on firearms being carried on an airplane – so it you want to get back to the debate on establishing a distance by which a municipality should attempt to ban fire arm possession from a public building I will be more than happy to have that conversation with you.”

    Guess you’re throwing another voter and taxpayer under the bus, and this one supported you.
    Can the town ban possession of weapons in town buildings and properties, I truly believe so, but I am not sure as there may be State Preemptions under CT Law, however, that’s not the point. This thread started as the Mayor, who all the towns and city’s around him know carries a not so concealed weapon (s) all of the time, and is a little off, and has made Stratford the laughing stock of the state. Even other Mayors, Selectman, and Town Managers get a laugh out of him in meetings. Is it a good idea to ban weapons from town buildings without express permission from the town? I think so. Look at some of the people who show up to TC meetings. Do you want them arguing with you with a handgun under their coat? Some of the TC I don’t think can carry because of past issues, so it does make some sense. To change this thread and argue personal property rights about others around town I think is disingenuous and out of context. I am for rights of concealed weapons holders, I think that if you pass the vetting and training, then you should be able to carry. I don’t have any of these issues as I have exemption on carrying firearms, but others who meet the state requirements do have rights, and most of us understand the safety in schools and town building issues.

    Guess someone has to FOIA the employment guidelines regarding carrying of weapons for town employees. While your at it, lets get the contract and the report from B & L Systems, cant seem to get the elected officials to get a copy.

  40. 40 gforrester

    “But what we were asking is why won’t you or the TC ban firearms in town buildings and property?”

    Stated simply I have never proposed a ban because quite frankly none of my Constituents have felt strongly enought to contact me to even ask me to make such a proposal. The hot button topics that I get calls & emails on are parking conditions – RR Station – Trees – Parks – Roads – Long Beach West – Education funding – Blight – Shakespeare – SAEP – and Raymark Waste. As you pointed out there are federal statutes that prevent firearms in schools or on school grounds so that becomes a non-issue.

    “It seems a little strange, as your saying you cannot regulate it.”

    Freedom I am not saying we can not regulate town employees from carrying firearms – your getting away from the point of this discussion in which I specifically addressed the suggestion that the Town Council lacked the “guts and courage” to change the status quo and it was referenced as an example that carrying concealed weapons within 1000 feet of a school has not been proposed or addressed. Honestly I don’t have the Town of Stratford Employee handbook but I can say that the EMS handbook specifically prohibits EMS workers from carrying while on duty even if they have a permit so I am fairly confident that there is such a ban on other departments and employees. Your examples seem well outside the scope of what the basic issue now appears to be the fact that the Mayor has a gun permit and it has been reported that he has carried his weapon throughtout Town Hall & possibly to meetings.

    “Guess you’re throwing another voter and taxpayer under the bus, and this one supported you.”

    Freedom please get your facts correct. I have reviewed several posts and while Jez has agreed with me on occasion at no time do I recall Jez stating or implying “I support Gavin Forrester” or anything to that regard. Jez has thanked me and others for the time that we put into the Council and for some specific votes cast but I am not sure what your defination of support is, and in so much as throwing anyone under the bus I don’t see how engaging Jez in conversation on the issue, and in particular the choice of words relative to “guts and courage”, is throwing somoene under the bus. I respect Jez’s opinion and the authors right to his/her specific views but because I disagree and am disapointed in labeling most politicans as gutless and lacking courage I don’t view that as throwing a Stratford Citizen & taxpayer under the bus.

    “I think so. Look at some of the people who show up to TC meetings. Do you want them arguing with you with a handgun under their coat? Some of the TC I don’t think can carry because of past issues, so it does make some sense.”

    Freedom do you seriously think that having a law on the books will prevent someone from showing up in a public building with a firearm? I don’t recall the city but within the last year such an incident did occur and a shooting resulting in a fatality happened and I might venture to say that municipality might have had such a ban to no avail. It’s always a concern in todays society but fear can not rule the day. I’m sure you don’t need an FOI request to obtain the information from the Administration as to wether or not a ban exists on employees carrying firearms.

    “While your at it, lets get the contract and the report from B & L Systems, cant seem to get the elected officials to get a copy.”

    Freedom I understand that you are not local so you could not be present at the last council meeting in which the Mayor was critized by Chairman Henrick and Myself regarding the lack of any B & L Report being made available, and as a result of the debate, a formal request on the record was made that any correspondance – draft – or report be made available to all of the members of the council prior to the next special meeting which will take place on June 23rd. If you review the Charter the Council has no enforcement provisions which mandiate the cooperation of the Mayor and the Council has been ruled to have no supeona powers and as such has little or no enforcement of the administration.

  41. 41 freedomofspeach

    “Freedom I understand that you are not local so you could not be present at the last council meeting in which the Mayor was critized by Chairman Henrick and Myself regarding the lack of any B & L Report being made available, and as a result of the debate, a formal request on the record was made that any correspondance – draft – or report be made available to all of the members of the council prior to the next special meeting which will take place on June 23rd. If you review the Charter the Council has no enforcement provisions which mandiate the cooperation of the Mayor and the Council has been ruled to have no supeona powers and as such has little or no enforcement of the administration.”

    Seems like the TC has really no useful power whatsoever. How about making a political stink about it? Call the Press? Or better yet refuse to review or approve any expenditure until you get the report, be an obstructionist. If the TC has no powers, then the people who wrote the original charter revision, along with not knowing if it was amended or a new charter, really screwed up. In other words, what good are you as a TC? Another question, why wasn’t any of these shortcomings addressed in CRC2? Why not do away with the TC altogether since you seem to have no power or real duties? Let the inmate run the asylum.

  42. 42 1george1

    Gavin,

    Thank you for the props about Grant Writing. I took much of the week
    end off from viewing the blog.

    It was also interesting to learn about the past and present Grants by both
    the Board of Ed and Town.

    As you know, I have been a proponent of giving $ 200,000 extra to the Library
    to hire 2 more Research Librarians with Masters Degrees in that field.

    > This weekend my dish network had an interview with Eric Schmidt, head of
    Google, who was asked different questions. Schmidt felt that the Internet had
    SO MUCH INFORMATION, that the KEY to being EFFECTIVE on the Internet was
    knowing WHERE to LOOK.
    Schmidt felt Librarians had a special expertise to get past many of the HIGHEST
    PLACED (TOP 10-15) First Page SEARCH RESULTS, to be able to find those items
    which are “actually DESIRED,” rather than those pushed up by EXPERTISE in
    Search Engine Optimization.

    Gavin, as you know, I proposed that for the $ 200,000 annual extra money to
    the Library they would have to find a minimum of $ 500,000 IMPLEMENTED
    GRANTS by the TOWN and/or BOARD of ED. This is 150 % R. O. I.
    Also I proposed they also get “10 % finders fee” for those IMPLEMENTED
    GRANTS above $ 500,000. Since the Library has to pay for / FUND their own
    Retirements and all of their EXPENSES from their own Sources and some Town
    FUNDS, they have INCENTIVE to FIND ADDED GRANTS.
    For each $ 1,000,000 the Town / Ed can IMPLEMENT above the $ 500,000 the
    Library would keep $ 100,000 by doing the Research to find the Grants.
    They could earn more, if they actually wrote the Grants.
    An added benefit to them and the Town is they might find Grants for the
    Library, which could proportionally cut some of the Funding from the Town.

    Gavin knows, about 25 % of the Bored of Edukation Budget is NOT from the
    COLLECTED TOWN TAXES, but from Federal and State Grants.

    Two years ago, I told Irene Cornish that I do not care how high her Budget
    goes, if the COLLECTED TOWN TAXES, stays relatively stable.
    The more money into the Town and Education from Grants, the less out of
    the DIRECT MIL RATE / COLLECTED Town Taxes.
    While there is a defined Federal and State pie. realistically it is immaterial how
    much the Federals contribute, whereas the State does not print money and
    has less access to a variety of Revenue Sources.
    It is especially true in that the political parties are more tuned in to archaic
    economics and Mafia Cash Cows, as Revenue Sourcing.

    Guns,
    The second Amendment is the second Amendment.
    There are ABUSES, mostly related to the inner cities. However if the COCAINE
    and DRUG / ALCOHOL ABUSES and SUPPLIES were addressed, the Guns issue
    would be a much lesser issue.

    The Politicians, Lawyers, and Finance people are far more effective in diverting
    and steering MONEY than all of the BANK / BUSINESS ROBBERS and STREET DRUG
    PUSHERS will ever see. Part of that is a legitimate function of Capitalism, as writen
    by Adam Smith.

  43. 43 1george1

    I lost a blog. Spam filter?

  44. 44 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester,

    Happy Father’s Day, by the way.

    “I asked for and was supplied with a Job Description of “Assistant to the Mayor” so not only does one exist I will be happy to email you a copy of you provide me your email address.”

    You can send Heather Habelka’s (and Ashley Heydu’s) job description to jezebel.anonymous@gmail.com It would be interesting to see what we have been paying for. Or perhaps just post it. I certainly will if you email it.

    “So Jez tell me how many political appointments made on a state or federal level are REJECTED by the legislative body.”

    At least there is some sort of review process as opposed to none at all. How many “Haddad” adventures would you like to go through again?

    “Under the Town Manager form of government we never had this but now because you can’t stand Miron you seem to be expounding that we need a weak mayorial form of government whereby the Mayor has little or no authority.”

    Nice argument. That is not my position at all. But you raise a good point. Under the Town Manager system, the Town Manager was a professional administrator with no party affiliation. The goal was to hire people who actually knew how to do their job, not a member of a particular party or Town Committee. I don’t think we signed up for a strictly patronage form of government. Once again, a “strong” mayor does not lead by fear.

    Miron has exploited every single weakness the first CRC (weren’t you on that one, Mr. Forrester?) left in the Charter. You well know that the Town Council was emasculated under this Charter. I am simply asking for the establishment of some guidelines and the ability of an employee to disagree without jeopardizing his/her career. We have had many viewings of this emperor’s clothing.

    “Jez name me a “politician” that you like please because I would love to see the model we are all being held up in comparision too.”

    In this Town? I appreciated the work Clem Naples did. Jennifer Hillgen worked extremely hard to become an effective legislator. Tom Moore is an excellent Councilman. If Pat Ulatowski ever moved back to Stratford I would vote for her for anything she ran for.

    “So you are generally saying that anyone that wants to volunteer to help their community by running for public office lacks the “guts and courage to change the status quo” because they don’t happen to agree with your opinion?”

    Did I say that? I don’t think so. But I will ask you the same question, are you implying that a politician should not have guts and courage in order to get elected? Can you tell me that anyone on the Town Council has exhibited guts and courage in the last 2.5 years?

    “It’s great to hide behind an alias and expound the gloom and doom that Stratford faces so again why don’t you just post your real name (Like George; Jon; Myself; Mike Reynolds e.t) -”

    Sigh…I have stated my reasons for remaining anonymous many times. I made a promise to someone very important to remain anonymous. I am not going to break my word. Not even for you, Mr. Forrester. And it is not all gloom and doom. Maybe you just don’t read those postings.

    “If your not going to be part of the solution that your just part of the problem.”

    How 1970′s. But, I think you may have missed the point of this blog. Mayor Moron has stated many, many times that Town employees are not allowed to speak with the press or even express an opinion that differs from his. It is a tactic previously known as “nacht und nebel”. This blog allows EVERYONE to express an opinion. Town employee or not. Town Committee member or not. Taxpayer or not. If we have learned anything over the last 2.5 years it is this: It doesn’t matter what Miron says, it only matters what he does. The two rarely match. The same is true for the Council, by the way.

    “Oh and Jez no need to be sarcastic – I was addressing the statement YOU made about within 1000 ft and how it affected the rights of property owners”.

    You took this one a little farther than I meant. It was merely an example of the failure of the Town Council to stand up to this mayor. It is what gives him the courage to say “I’m the F*****G Mayor! I can do whatever I F******G want.” Had he actually took out his little gun and waved it around at a Public Forum or an executive session of the Council I have no doubt whatsoever the Council would pass such an ordinance immediately. But there is still time. He has 18 months left.

    “I have reviewed several posts and while Jez has agreed with me on occasion at no time do I recall Jez stating or implying “I support Gavin Forrester” or anything to that regard.”

    I have reviewed several of your posts Mr. Forrester and at no time do I recall you stating that you were running for anything. What kind of support would you like?

    “The hot button topics that I get calls & emails on are parking conditions – RR Station – Trees – Parks – Roads – Long Beach West – Education funding – Blight – Shakespeare – SAEP – and Raymark Waste.”

    And how are those going? Any successes yet?

    “If you review the Charter the Council has no enforcement provisions which mandiate the cooperation of the Mayor and the Council has been ruled to have no supeona powers and as such has little or no enforcement of the administration.”

    And yet you cannot see why we want an independent Town Attorney or hiring/firing oversight? On the one hand you say to run for office to solve the problems and on the other hand you say running for office and getting elected is pointless because the Council has no enforceable powers. You DO have enforceable powers. The last two councils have chosen not to exercise them.

    “I disagree and am disapointed in labeling most politicans as gutless and lacking courage I don’t view that as throwing a Stratford Citizen & taxpayer under the bus.”

    I actually didn’t say that. I said it was rare in a politician running for office. Since you are not running for office, Mr. Forrester, I hope you did not take that to mean I am calling you gutless and lacking courage. It does take courage and guts for a politician to lead a government. You require the ability to stand up to your current political leadership and persuade them it is in their best political interest to sacrifice their patronage privileges for the sake of the voter. Neither the DTC nor the RTC have had many examples of that they can point to. To us ordinary voters the goal of the process seems to be power and domination. Somehow, governing for the benefit of the citizens seems to have been forgotten.

    Freedom:

    “Guess you’re throwing another voter and taxpayer under the bus, and this one supported you.”

    Mr. Forrester is going to need a bigger bus.

    The firearm’s issue was but a small one. It is an example of poor leadership and poor judgment. It also points out the lack of will to oppose anything this mayor does regardless of how dangerous or idiotic it may be.

    You may be able to infer from some of my previous post that I do not hold this mayor in high regard. I truly believe he has set back this town in critical ways and it will take years after he has left office to correct them. This Council has an opportunity, and make no mistake, they only have ONE opportunity to correct these errors and prevent this from happening again. Mr. Forrester understands the significance of these positions yet, for some reason, is reluctant to embrace them.

  45. 45 gforrester

    “Seems like the TC has really no useful power whatsoever.”

    The Town Council is the Legislative Branch and created and passed ordinances including the budget. Might not be all that you want it to be but I think it works as a part time branch of government.

    “How about making a political stink about it? Call the Press? Or better yet refuse to review or approve any expenditure until you get the report, be an obstructionist.”

    The press was at the meeting but decided not to report upon that discussion. Evidently the Mayor has the power to expand the contract with B & L and reported that he went back to them to have additional options included in their final report. The funds will come from the bonding package that the Council already approved.

    “If the TC has no powers, then the people who wrote the original charter revision, along with not knowing if it was amended or a new charter, really screwed up.”

    No the Town Council has powers but they are limited when discussing punitive enforcement and investigations. The only powers that they had over the Town Manager was not to renew his/her contract upon renewal or buy them out. I don’t recall what other communities have by I would venture to say that neither Bridgeport or Milford can “impeach” their chief elected official. The council appropriates the funds and it is the responsibility of the Administration to spend the funds in a mannor consistant with the appropriation. And just because the Town Attorney thinks it’s a new charter that does not match the opinion of the Town Attorney who was assigned to the 2002-03 CRC, Kevin Kelly, and since the question was clearly worded “amend the Charter” one can make the argument that the intent was clearly to amend sections of the charter. The only reason the entire charter was published for the ballot was to show comparisions between the old and the new. And lastly it was not the CRC that put the question on the Ballot but the Town Council at that time. The CRC was never asked to write the questions to be placed on the ballot – again that was the Town Council – the CRC issued a majority report calling for the change of government with amendments to the charter and published a revised document that it gave to the Council.

    “In other words, what good are you as a TC? Another question, why wasn’t any of these shortcomings addressed in CRC2? Why not do away with the TC altogether since you seem to have no power or real duties? Let the inmate run the asylum.”

    Again the TC is not designed to be the watchdog of the chief elected offical. The TC passes ordinances – approved contracts – and appropriates funding. Because it doesn’t go as far as having sweeping investigatory powers (The right to supeona was denied by CT Law as a provision not given to a local governing body) doesn’t mean it does not serve a purpose.

  46. 46 gforrester

    JEZ -

    The description is a PDF document so I will email it to you in the next day or so.

    “Town Manager was a professional administrator with no party affiliation.” Rightttttttt
    Think back to Ron Owens – your telling me that TM’s who get hired by the council – sometimes split votes along party lines – don’t play favorites to the majority that put time in office lol. Why do you think that contracts for TM’s were written so that they would overlap the next council elections – so if one party lost the new one taking over couldn’t fire the TM. Allegiance can be either political or financial.

    “I have reviewed several of your posts Mr. Forrester and at no time do I recall you stating that you were running for anything. What kind of support would you like?”

    JEZ I was just answering Freedom who made the statement that you supported me. I have never asked for your support and was just trying to set the record straight by responding to Freedom’s observation.

    “Miron has exploited every single weakness the first CRC (weren’t you on that one, Mr. Forrester?) left in the Charter. You well know that the Town Council was emasculated under this Charter. I am simply asking for the establishment of some guidelines and the ability of an employee to disagree without jeopardizing his/her career.”

    Can you explain to me what powers the council lost in the amended charter versus the old charter? I have to disagree with the concept that the Town Council was emasculated. Hiring and firing under both versions, new and old, of the charter was always under the auspice of the Town Manager/ Administration. If you will remember the attempt to recall former 3rd District Councilman Frank Blando was because it was alledged that he “interfered” with the hiring and firing of an employee. That seperation always existed in the Charter. We left the right to issue supoenas in the current version of the charter but case law in CT doesn’t allow for it so it was not the CRC that weakened that aspect but rather CT law. Under the old form of government the council passed ordinances and funding appropriations and this current version of the charter is no different. True we don’t appoint members to commissions and the current proposal from the CRC does expand the powers of advice and consent so what other great powers were lost?

    “And how are those going? Any successes yet?”

    As a matter of fact yes there has been success in many areas. Improved funding for the schools have aided in the efforts to get Stratford removed from the No Child Left Behind “watch list” for systematic poor performance. Capital appropriations were made for the improvements to Long Brook Park and applications to Inland Wet Lands have been submitted along with specific design plans with construction slated to begin in the late fall. Private contractors were funded and hired to help the town catch up on tree complaints and the wait list has been reduced from 3 + years down to within a calender year with further improvements to come. The town is once again poised to select a preferred developer for Shakespeare – Long Beach West contract discussion are moving forward. Citizens actions have prompted protections in legislation on the state level regarding Raymark Waste and my Ordinance was reviewed by staff and the Town Attorney and will be ready for the next step shortly. All in all I think progress is being made in a number of areas.

    “It also points out the lack of will to oppose anything this mayor does regardless of how dangerous or idiotic it may be.”

    I will respectifully disagree with you on your observation of this council.

    “I am simply asking for the establishment of some guidelines and the ability of an employee to disagree without jeopardizing his/her career.”

    Hmmmmm let me see – I’m a non-unionized salaried employee in the private sector and if I disagreed with the owner of the company I might find myself out on the street looking for work. Jez even with the protection of a union people still get terminated for one reason or another. I’m not saying it’s right but at will employees, in both the public sector and the private sector, can end up terminated for a wide variety of reasons. I can disagree with my employer but ultimately he owns the company and it’s his way or the highway. All I know is that I would want to hear opinions from all employees involved in the decision making process but after taking into consideration that input the final decision would reside with me and the employee would have to accept the decision as a part of the chain of command. I certainly would not fire them just for disagreeing.

  47. 47 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester,

    “your telling me that TM’s who get hired by the council – sometimes split votes along party lines – don’t play favorites to the majority that put time in office lol.”

    I am sure one can go back 300 or so years and find a Town Manager that acted politically. In recent memory, say beginning with Mark Barnhart, I am aware that Town Managers have tried their utmost to stay away from the politics and concentrate on the operations. Some had more success than others. But politics, power and intimidation weren’t their primary motivations as it is now.

    “Can you explain to me what powers the council lost in the amended charter versus the old charter?”

    The Town Attorney for one thing. The Town Attorney answered to the Council. The ability to pass ordinances, resolutions and expenditures without the threat of veto. And the Council (where the real power was) was subject to election every two years.

    Were previous councils effective and diligent in serving the public? Nope. So a new Charter was written swinging the balance of power to a mayor, but without the checks and balances necessary to prevent abuse. I am not arguing that one is more effective than the other. I am arguing that you cannot have the bulk of the power resting in one hand without balancing it with another. You have a chance to do so, if only you would take it.

    “the current proposal from the CRC does expand the powers of advice and consent so what other great powers were lost?”

    The next council only decides who the next Town Attorney is. He/she will still serve at the pleasure of the mayor. That means the Town Attorney serves one client and unless you pass an ordinance creating a salaried position, we will be subject to legal work as a revenue drain.

    “Improved funding for the schools have aided in the efforts to get Stratford removed from the No Child Left Behind “watch list” for systematic poor performance.”

    You’re kidding with this one, right?

    “Capital appropriations were made for the improvements to Long Brook Park and applications to Inland Wet Lands have been submitted along with specific design plans with construction slated to begin in the late fall. Private contractors were funded and hired to help the town catch up on tree complaints and the wait list has been reduced from 3 + years down to within a calender year with further improvements to come.”

    We are waiting with great anticipation to witness these improvements.

    “The town is once again poised to select a preferred developer for Shakespeare – Long Beach West contract discussion are moving forward.”

    Again…we are waiting patiently….

    “Citizens actions have prompted protections in legislation on the state level regarding Raymark Waste ”

    You mean like petitions?

    “I will respectifully disagree with you on your observation of this council.”

    Examples please?

    “I’m a non-unionized salaried employee in the private sector and if I disagreed with the owner of the company I might find myself out on the street looking for work.”

    The mistake here is that your position with your employer is to generate profit for the shareholders. The position of a public employee is to benefit/serve the citizen. These are different goals.

    “I disagreed with the owner of the company I might find myself out on the street looking for work.” Perhaps. But he still can’t fire you because you are a male, older, disabled or of a different religion. You are also free, apparently, to voice your opinion on public matters. It is doubtful your employer would fire you because you happen to be a democrat or a republican.

    But by making Town Employees “at-will” that is exactly what you are doing with non-union (as if union membership mattered to Miron) employees. They will be replaced should a new mayor be elected and we lose all of the knowledge and expertise they may have accumulated in their positions.

  48. 48 1george1

    Gavin rasied the issue about political appointments.

    I know that ROBERT BORK was rejected for SUPREME COURT JUDGE.
    He is the guy who fired Elliott Richardson, for Nixon.
    Although brilliant and a proponent of Judicial Restraint, from what I read
    of his views, he was to the Right of Gilgamesh (Divine rights of Kings) which
    is a caveman view!

    I know there are multiple JUDGES who have also been rejected for the
    Supreme Court and Federal Bench.

    Although, my personally, Judging the CT JUDGES appointed during the
    Clinton years, the ETHICS threshhold must be zero.

    My solution to end War and Crime?

    Throw all the elected and politically appointed supergraders in each
    level of government and political parties in JAIL, without a Warrant or
    a trial, like they wanted to do to me.
    One way to turn Conservatives into believing in Constitutional Rights.
    One way to turn Liberals into PRAYING and looking for Equal protection
    of the Law.
    Especially the scummy slimeys of the Rupert Murdock political crew!

  49. 49 sudds

    Geesh… I take a week off for a little fun in the sun and I miss out on all of the good stuff!!! :o}

    PS… Mr. Forrester… as a constituent of yours… I do NOT want a law prohibiting firearms anywhere!!! I’m not in favor of guns (actually, I’m against them), but I do believe in the Constitution! (and I do think that our mayor should have enough common sense to leave his gun at home)

    Anyway… back to the action… I believe the ball is in your court Gavin!!!

  50. 50 sudds

    Oh yeah… one more thing…

    Rocki is NOT anti-canine!!!

  51. 51 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    Does the Constitution permit carrying concealed weapons everywhere?

    About those dog license fees…..

  52. 52 sudds

    Nope… but it doesn’t deny that right either!

    PS… Rocki is ANTI dog licensing fees, but pro mandatory dog “registration” (with proof of vaccinations, etc) of some sort!!!

  53. 53 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    Lemme know how that works out for you the next time you’re in LaGuardia.

    “mandatory dog “registration” ”

    And cats? Any requirements there?

  54. 54 gforrester

    Jez:

    The Town Attorney answered to SOME of the Town Council, other wise known as the majority party that appointed them, so it’s not much different now – to the victors of the spoils.

    The veto can be used to prevent one political party from doing something purely political against the wishes of the people. Let’s look back and when the Republican Majority wanted to suspend the entire Capital Improvement Plan because they were upset (rightfully so I might add) with the renovations at Town Hall. To suspend the entire CIP out of spite or anger would have brought to a halt all other capital improvements to roads and schools. But for the power of the veto the majority of 6 could have passed that vote and delayed projects increasing costs to the taxpayer. In that instance the veto provided a service to the citizens. But when the Mayor wanted to veto the CRC and shut down the will of the people the veto was overridden – exactly the way it was suppose to work.

    “You’re kidding with this one, right?” – No I wasn’t – I attended the Bunnell graduation last evening and it was reported that Stratford is one of only 3 CT Towns to be taken of the poor performance list for no child left behind. I consider that a major accomplishment don’t you? Would you prefer to have our schools fail to meet some artificial standard established by Washington Politicians who don’t give a rat’s backside if America falls behind the educational curve?

    “We are waiting with great anticipation to witness these improvements.” Rome was not built in one day – why not come down to a LPC meeting some day and see for yourself the plans and design?

    “The mistake here is that your position with your employer is to generate profit for the shareholders. The position of a public employee is to benefit/serve the citizen. These are different goals.”

    No it’s not a mistake – I’m one of 50,000 shareholders of the Town of Stratford and I expect that every employee will work in the best interest to be fiscally responsible when serving the public. Both the private and public employee has a chain of command and when the boss says A we don’t do B without repercussions. I’m not clear if under your scenario you are asserting that you can be an employee and disagree with the Mayor and then if he says A and the employee does B, because they think it’s in the best interest of the public, that it is ok to disobey a directive from up the chain of command and nothing should happen?

    Jez you are making the assumption that the next elected Mayor will be an ass and let go valued public servants for purely political purposes – maybe because it furthers your argument – but you can’t make a blanket statement that will happen because until such time as an administration changes you can’t be proven right or wrong.

  55. 55 gforrester

    I do NOT want a law prohibiting firearms anywhere!!! I’m not in favor of guns (actually, I’m against them), but I do believe in the Constitution! (and I do think that our mayor should have enough common sense to leave his gun at home)

    Don’t worry Sudds – I have no intention of introducing that ordinance. If someone is hell bent on doing evil deeds in a public building with a firearm, registered or not – licensed or not, no ordinance in the world will prevent a tragedy from occurring. Unless we are going to put metal detectors and security at every door to every public building an ordinance banning possession is just another charge to read at the indictment.

    If I was a first time reader of the blog and was the Mayor maybe I would be “packing” seeing as he about a popular on here as the plague.

  56. 56 sudds

    Bravo Mr. Forrester… my thoughts exactly!!!

  57. 57 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester,

    “so it’s not much different now – to the victors of the spoils.”

    I am just not as pleased with that solution as you appear to be.

    “But when the Mayor wanted to veto the CRC and shut down the will of the people the veto was overridden – exactly the way it was suppose to work.”

    And then a majority of the Commission were from either the DTC or RTC. Don’t you call that “spoils”?

    “I attended the Bunnell graduation last evening and it was reported that Stratford is one of only 3 CT Towns to be taken of the poor performance list for no child left behind. I consider that a major accomplishment don’t you?”

    Yes, I do. I just don’t think the Council had any involvement with that. I credit Irene Cornish, Ben Branyan and the BOE for that.

    “I’m not clear if under your scenario you are asserting that you can be an employee and disagree with the Mayor and then if he says A and the employee does B, because they think it’s in the best interest of the public, that it is ok to disobey a directive from up the chain of command and nothing should happen?”

    Did I say “disobey”? I believe I said “disagree”. It seems you will occassionally reinterpret my words. I am discussing the reality of the situation we have had for the last 2.5 years. Does “disobey” mean membership in a different party or signing a petition?

    “Jez you are making the assumption that the next elected Mayor will be an ass and let go valued public servants for purely political purposes”

    You mean like the one we have now?

    “but you can’t make a blanket statement that will happen because until such time as an administration changes you can’t be proven right or wrong.”

    Past performance is no guarantee of…

    I don’t think the citizens should be forever dependent upon the kindness of future mayors. I believe us citizens need a bit more protection than “trust me”. How many times do we need to get burned before we act?

    “I do NOT want a law prohibiting firearms anywhere!!!”

    I walked into a restaurant in Germany once and asked for non-smoking. The Maitre D’ said, “Achhh! You Americans! You can go into a restaurant with a gun, but you can’t go in with a cigarette?”

  58. 58 sudds

    I walked into a restaurant in Germany once and asked for non-smoking. The Maitre D’ said, “Achhh! You Americans! You can go into a restaurant with a gun, but you can’t go in with a cigarette?”

    Second-hand smoke has been proven to cause cancer (and since you can’t have a peeing-side in the pool… LOL)… guns only kill people when someone uses them to do so. A gun by itself has NEVER killed anyone! (uggh… I hate defending gun nuts)

  59. 59 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    I’d rather take my chances in a smoke filled room than with Miron.

  60. 60 gforrester

    “And then a majority of the Commission were from either the DTC or RTC. Don’t you call that “spoils”?”

    Jez The current make up is 3-3-3 and only Rich Fredette, Eric Booth and John Florek is on either Town Committee and fault has been found with this commission as well. The formation guarantees equal representation so you will never have a commission of all U’s. So I wouldn’t call 66% of the membership not being on a Town Committee as spoils.

    “Yes, I do. I just don’t think the Council had any involvement with that. I credit Irene Cornish, Ben Branyan and the BOE for that.”

    Oh so adding back a majority of what the Mayor cut last year had nothing to do with providing the funds to help them accomplish their goals. Ok I see – Council can’t do anything right in your eyes – even when the proof is right there in black and white. Why not call Irene and ask her if he Council has not been instrumental to their successes.

    “Does “disobey” mean membership in a different party or signing a petition?”

    Jez it’s not clear what you are saying sometimes. So who was fired because of their party affiliation or for signing a petition? If you are referring to the supervisors I believe the petition was started after the budget was passed and not before. So please let me know who was terminated for the reasons stated. Clearly it’s not my position that anyone should be terminated for either reason and as far as I am concerned the best qualified person should have the job regardless of politics.

    And Jez it’s the citizens that elect the Mayor so he/she is accountable to them. You want to legislate against a mayor being able to do anything with regards to personnel decisions without council and at that point why have a Mayor – or Town Manager for that matter.

  61. 61 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester,

    Honest to goodness, sometimes I am completely befuddled by your support and defense of the status quo. Reading your comments lately I believe you support the current system with 100% of it’s weaknesses.

    But…let’s get back to it:

    “The formation guarantees equal representation so you will never have a commission of all U’s.”

    Actually there are more independents in this Town than either Republicans or Democrats so I’m not sure what you mean by “equal”. In addition, it seems to me that with 66% of the Commission approved by either the DTC or RTC insuring political patronage would be a key element.

    “Oh so adding back a majority of what the Mayor cut last year had nothing to do with providing the funds to help them accomplish their goals.”

    I am truly surprised you decided to go there. We are both aware of the drastic cuts this mayor proposed to the BOE budget last year. We are also aware of the list he provided of the supervisors and Department Heads he wanted dismissed. The deal was made that the BOE cuts would be “restored” if the names were “let go”. Only two of those names remained in their position because of their political connections. You know it, we know it. And this mayor even had the gall to announce a budget surplus of exactly the amount of the salaries of the people fired for “budgetary” reasons. Obviously, there were no “budgetary” reasons.

    “So who was fired because of their party affiliation or for signing a petition?”

    Let’s think back, Mr. Forrester. Have you ever seen an audit of the Town budget were one person was singled out? And you may have a small point about party affiliation. But if you were in disagreement, a woman over 50, openly gay, or just plain ethical you probably no longer work for the town.
    Ben Branyan
    Judy Heigel
    Pat Blumstein
    Al Dubois
    Elaine O’Keefe
    Mary Tiernan
    Eileen Murphey
    Diane Toolan
    Pat Naylor
    Sue Nicholson
    Brian Thomas
    John Carroll
    Steven Danzer
    Ken Kellogg
    Beth Stremple
    Patrice Sulik
    Len Buehler
    Kim Correia
    Diane Maurice

    “Clearly it’s not my position that anyone should be terminated for either reason and as far as I am concerned the best qualified person should have the job regardless of politics.”

    Great! So you are saying you are in favor of removing the “at-will” status of Town employees from the Charter?

    “Jez it’s not clear what you are saying sometimes.”
    Perhaps if you refrained from changing my words, my statements would be clearer.

    “And Jez it’s the citizens that elect the Mayor so he/she is accountable to them.”

    Mr. Forrester, you can’t have it both ways. You can’t claim the Council has no power to object to the operations of the Town and then claim the mayor is accountable. Between elections (4 years, remember) he/she is essentially accountable to no one. “I’m the f*****G mayor. I can do whatever the f****k I want.”

    “You want to legislate against a mayor being able to do anything with regards to personnel decisions without council and at that point why have a Mayor”

    That is not correct. Almost every business in this country has some sort of employment policy. Certainly most governments do. “At will” does not mean the owner walks down a hallway and simply fires anyone who’s looks or personality he doesn’t like. I am simply asking for the Council to set employment guidelines that a chief executive must follow. The Council currently has no authority to do so.

    Let me make one more thing clear. Of all the names bandied about lately for likely candidates for the next mayoral election, I think you are the most qualified and dedicated to this Town. I also think you have the most potential to be a good mayor. Otherwise I would not bother arguing with you.

    Nonetheless, this current system obviously doesn’t not work for the citizens of Stratford. No matter where I go or who I talk to the residents are displeased with this mayor and the way the last two Councils have performed. Even touting the last budget that was approved, most people recall that there taxes were raised 21% with the two previous budgets, yet services have declined (except for the signage around Town).

    I am dismayed that you believe a “spoils” system and political patronage jobs are appropriate for this Town. The next mayor may be good or bad. We have no idea. But why leave all that room to be bad? Haven’t we already seen that? Do we flip a coin every 4 years or do we put protections in place?

  62. 62 sudds

    Jez…

    I have a question for you (although this will probably be useless since it’s fairly obvious that either [a] your name is on the list or [b] the name of one of your family members is on the list)…

    You keep listing all of the people that we let go because either [a] politics or [b]Miron didn’t want them… although several months later the town seems to still be operating just fine. So, my question is this…

    Could it be that maybe these individuals really were NOT needed? Could it be that this is just a personal fight/vandetta of yours that no one else really cares about?

    In all honesty… I feel bad for these people losing their jobs… BUT as a taxpayer I feel that if the town is still running at status quo, and we had a surplus equal to their salaries… then I’m really not losing too much sleep over it!!!

  63. 63 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    “I have a question for you (although this will probably be useless since it’s fairly obvious that either [a] your name is on the list or [b] the name of one of your family members is on the list)…”

    You left out “good friends”.

    “Could it be that maybe these individuals really were NOT needed?”

    You’re so right, Sudds. As usual. We didn’t need any of these people. They were totally useless and a drain on the taxpayers. Not a single one of them ever did anything to benefit the town. Just lazy, no good leeches feeding off the public trough.

    “although several months later the town seems to still be operating just fine.”

    Right again, Sudds. You had that stump removed didn’t you? All is great in this Town. What was I thinking?

    “Could it be that this is just a personal fight/vandetta of yours that no one else really cares about?”

    Wow. You are really on a roll. Yes. I am the only ones who cares that these lazy no-good people were fired. In fact, I am the only one who blogs here. Things are going so well, I think we should reelect everyone who currently holds office. Especially our wonderful mayor. He really has a handle on how to run this town. I agree with you. He should be given even more power. You’d probably never meet a more honest and trustworthy guy.

    “BUT as a taxpayer I feel that if the town is still running at status quo, and we had a surplus equal to their salaries”

    Again, you are dead on. Why should we care that he claimed that these people were terminated for lack of funding and then turn around 3 months later and declare a surplus. He must be right. And the status quo is a great thing to have. I think we should keep things exactly as they are for as long as we live. I wouldn’t change a thing. Look at all that has been accomplished over the last 2.5 years!

    “then I’m really not losing too much sleep over it!!!”

    As long as you sleep well, that’s all that’s important to me.

  64. 64 sudds

    “You left out “good friends”.”

    Even further proof that you are far from an impartial spokesperson for the group. Yet, most of the time you seem to be the only spokesperson!

    “You’re so right, Sudds. As usual. We didn’t need any of these people. They were totally useless and a drain on the taxpayers. Not a single one of them ever did anything to benefit the town. Just lazy, no good leeches feeding off the public trough.”

    WOW… you’re better at twisting things than my wife! I NEVER said that they were totally useless and a drain. Everyone is born with a gallbladder, yet people run just as well when they need theirs removed, right? My point was that if things are running just fine now then perhaps those positions weren’t as necessary as you think. Oh wait… this brings us back to you being partial again, huh?

    “Right again, Sudds. You had that stump removed didn’t you? All is great in this Town. What was I thinking?”

    I had my stump removed 18+ months ago! (wow… does that NOT sound good or what? LOL!!!) And it took me over two years to get it done… two years (might I add…) during which your friends/family/self were employed with the town!!!

    “Wow. You are really on a roll. Yes. I am the only ones who cares that these lazy no-good people were fired. In fact, I am the only one who blogs here. Things are going so well, I think we should reelect everyone who currently holds office. Especially our wonderful mayor. He really has a handle on how to run this town. I agree with you. He should be given even more power. You’d probably never meet a more honest and trustworthy guy.”

    Twisting again! (are you sure you’re not my wife blogging?) I wasn’t talking about everyone who is elected… I was talking about those let go. I’m NOT a big fan of the mayor either… but I don’t know the reasoning why your friends/family/self were terminated by him. You claim that it’s because he is power-hungry a-hole, but that’s only one side to the story (what was that about being biased?)… what if these people really were “dead wood”, or political appointees (since the Republicans were in control for so long is this really a stretch to believe?), or incompetent, or etc???

    “Again, you are dead on. Why should we care that he claimed that these people were terminated for lack of funding and then turn around 3 months later and declare a surplus. He must be right. And the status quo is a great thing to have. I think we should keep things exactly as they are for as long as we live. I wouldn’t change a thing. Look at all that has been accomplished over the last 2.5 years!”

    What does “lack of funding” REALLY mean? Anyone who has ever worked in the real world knows that sometimes people get “let go for budgetary reasons”, but it’s really just a legal/C-Y-A reason to fire someone! You obviously have some sort of legal knowledge… so you MUST be aware of this… yet you get on your soapbox and preach as if you are ignorant to this fact. Again, I will repeat… what if these people really were “dead wood”, or political appointees (since the Republicans were in control for so long is this really a stretch to believe?), or incompetent, or etc???

    And I hope you’re joking about the status quo thing!!!

    “As long as you sleep well, that’s all that’s important to me.”

    Thanks… it’s good to know that I’m loved!

  65. 65 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    “Twisting”? Moi?

    YOU said these people were not needed. As if you knew what they did or didn’t do.

    “Even further proof that you are far from an impartial spokesperson for the group.”

    Group of what? I am only the spokesman for me. I make no claim to speak for anyone else.

    “My point was that if things are running just fine now then perhaps those positions weren’t as necessary as you think.”

    Things are running just fine? Why have there been 31,000+ hits on this site? Or is that what Miron told you? I gave you a whole topic to list positive things and the only thing you came up with was:

    “I was able to get Miron to have Public Works finally grind dump the rotting stump from a tree that they chopped down in front of my house!!!

    Although after 2 years now no new tree has been planted yet (even after e-mailing Mr. McCarthy for several weeks now)… so I might have to start e-mailing the mayor now!”

    “but I don’t know the reasoning why your friends/family/self were terminated by him.”

    I do.

    “what if these people really were “dead wood”, or political appointees (since the Republicans were in control for so long is this really a stretch to believe?), or incompetent, or etc???”

    What if pigs could fly? If you ask anyone who actually knows, almost every single one was a hard working, ethical and effective employee. Some even award winning. None were political appointees. I haven’t even mentioned the ones who took early retirement or just quit in disgust.

    “What does “lack of funding” REALLY mean?”

    It means he LIED. Call me old fashioned, but I don’t think mayors should lie. I don’t think they should initiate punitive audits (at our expense), I don’t think they should take vacations on the taxpayer dime, I don’t think they should hire family members, I don’t think they should intimidate and threaten, I don’t think they should squander taxpayer money, I don’t think they should use vulgarity when dealing with voters, I don’t think they should create no-show jobs and I don’t think they should blame everyone but themselves when they screw up.

    But that is the status quo and according to you, that makes you sleep better at night.

    The important thing to remember here Sudds is that decades of experience and knowledge have been lost. Talent and creativity have been lost as well. Losing these people hurts the Town, not just the people who have lost their jobs. Most of them have moved on. They’ve been scooped up by other employers who recognize talent. We are the ones who suffer.

  66. Oh my ~ things are really getting heated around here….

    Sudds ~ as an example, I heard, from the horses mouth (a restaurant owner) that he was glad Miron got rid of Elaine O’Keefe. She was making him “jump through hoops” to get his restaurant open and wouldn’t budge. What was she doing? Her job. She wouldn’t relax her standards so Miron felt it was time for her to go.

    I’ve heard the same for others too. I don’t have an axe to grind with him. In other words, personally, Jim Miron could be a great guy – I don’t know; as a mayor, he stinks.

    I also heard – again from the horse’s mouth – that he tried to replace at least one of the people he got rid. It was discovered and a grievance was placed. Since he claimed some of the layoffs/terminations were for budgetary reasons then you wouldn’t think that those positions would be filled by new hires, right?

    Believe me, I don’t think Jeze’s frustration is unwarranted.

    OK, I’m going away now….LOL

  67. P.S. I don’t know about you, but it makes me really wonder about the standards that local restaurants are held to. I’ll stick to the ones that were opened before Elaine O’Keefe left (the ones that had to jump through hoops).

  68. 68 1george1

    PCS,
    I heard exactly the same feedback from a well know party person
    about Elaine O’Keefe and restaurants.
    My reaction was the same as yours!

    I also wonder about Elaine’s knowledge of the Toxic Dumpsites and AVCO,
    which is just UPSTREAM from Stratford’s beaches?

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Jeze,
    Overall, I would agree that most of the people let go, were capable people.
    You would disagree, yet many of the people replacing them are also capable!

    We agree there are OUTRAGES among certain HIRES and certain let go!

    Jeze, SUDDS raises legitimate points.

    Jeze, you are passionate and loyal.
    If you looked at certain things involving certain of your friends and IF they
    were NOT your friends and/or in the Miron camp – you would be outraged!
    Jeze = warning > I am baiting you!

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Gavin, your support of the personnel selected on both C. R. C.
    is frustrating because you and I know both of the C. R. C. were
    100 % political appointments.

    Please don’t even try to justify a claim there were ANY INDEPENDENTS
    just because they happen to be UNAFFILIATED!

    Paul Hoydic, cousin to Laura / former Rudy Weise employee > is an
    INDEPENDENT?

    Malcom Youngist / husband to RTC member = worked in Registrar office
    / Sikorsky Employee > is INDEPENDENT?

    Jim Orlowe, ex-head of ALINABAL a long time Berchem client > INDEPENDENT?
    (Disclaimer > I like Jim and is a friend!)

    Who were the others?
    Please blog their names…
    I will gladly use them as LOBS for raising chalk along Tennis BASELINE or
    hitting them out of the Baseball park.

    These are NOT stupid people.
    These are NOT lazy people.
    They are entitled to their opinion and commended for civic involvement.

    However Stratford can’t afford the FREE Volunteers, who often have a
    discreet connection to employees, managers, contractors, appointees.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Gavin, you are an admitted former Republican and now a Democrat,
    which I interpret as jumping from the FIRE to the FRYING PAN. ;)

    The Town Democratic is such a mess that a (very recent) Republican
    won the vote for REGISTRAR 53 to 7. So now the Republicans control
    BOTH Registrar positions? :) Wait … :(

    We had Team Stratford # 1
    We had Team Stratford # 2
    We appear to have Team Stratford # 3?

    We had S.F.T. = A disater where it is proven there were major rippoffs
    We had K.K.P. (?) = A proven failure
    These are finalists in the Shakespeare comedy (tragedy) of errors?

    Mel Brooks, Dickens, and Shakespeare could not make the town cast of
    political characters (caricatures) to be credible, even as parody….. :(

    Readings of “Plato’s Republic,” Machiaevilli “The Prince,” and the SUN TSU
    “Art of War,” have nothing on the subplots and subcurrent in Stratford? :(

    Thomas Payne, George Mason, and Ben Franklyn would REBEL!

  69. 69 jezebel282

    George,

    “Jeze, you are passionate and loyal.”

    Thank you. I also have a terrible honest streak. I’ve tried therapy for it by going to Council meetings, but maybe the dosage is wrong.

    “Jeze, SUDDS raises legitimate points.”

    And which are those? The fact nothing has blown up yet?

    “You would disagree, yet many of the people replacing them are also capable!”

    That may be true. However, I’m afraid we’ll never find out. Miron will take credit for the smallest achievement. And you can be sure that none of them will voice an opinion differing from his. Ask the Playwright. Remember (you too Sudds) that this blog was started because the Playwright was unable to express his/her opinion publicly.

    The POINT is that we had dedicated, talented, creative and hard working employees who were doing their job for us effectively. Why dismiss them? To hire more subservient ones?

    “Please don’t even try to justify a claim there were ANY INDEPENDENTS
    just because they happen to be UNAFFILIATED!”

    You are correct, George. Even the appearance of independence would have been enhanced if Pat Sperling had sat on the Commission.

  70. “Paul Hoydic, cousin to Laura / former Rudy Weiss employee > is an INDEPENDENT?”

    George, I believe Paul (a/k/a in the Windmill years as “Radar”) is Laura’s husband, not cousin.

    Also, it was pretty clear in the minority report (sorry to keep referring to it) that the “possiblity” of a mayor coming in and laying off (more like terminating/firing) qualified, loyal employees and replacing them with loyalists to the elected official existed. These weren’t just run of the mill employees, they were qualified and dedicated to the people of the Town. They worked for the Town, not an elected official. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see the clear picture that Jim Miron used the minority report as his “Being Mayor for Dummies” handbook. He said he was running to ensure the office wouldn’t be abused; he lied. He said he would ensure that taxes wouldn’t go crazy; he lied. He said many more things; he lied. I don’t think there is an honest bone in his body.

    He removed and replaced people with more controllable people, not people who would stand up to him. If you don’t agree or do as your told – even if it’s wrong – better start packing your personals cuz’ you’ll be gone really soon. Town Hall is run by a tyrant who created a hostile work environment.

    Sudds, you’re probably right, everything is running “just fine” but do you want to work in fear? I certainly don’t. We spend most of our day at work; we shouldn’t have to worry about anxiety attacks when we are walking out the door each morning. These people need their jobs – these aren’t independently wealthy people just working for ha-ha’s. They’re working to support their families, pay their outrageously high taxes and utility bills and hopefully have a little extra to do something enjoyable with their families. Without a job, they’re up a creek.

    Despite the fact that everything may be running “just fine,” doesn’t make what Jim Miron came in and did right. He removed people he couldn’t control – we’ll be paying for that for a long time. Take, for instance, Pat Blumstein. She was the executive administrative assistant to the Town Manager and was in that position for 20+ years. Why the heck would someone be dumb enough to get rid of her. She knows every in and out, she’d do nothing but make the mayor look good, because she could’ve alerted him when something wasn’t “kosher.” Patty Ulatowski, another – except hers was a golden handshake. She knew the workings of Town Hall like the back of her hand. So, get rid of her – someone with the most knowledge – and replace her with someone who has no knowledge of Stratford or the history at Town Hall? Elaine O’Keefe – award winning health director – eliminated because she wouldn’t be controlled? Hmm. Replaced again, with someone he could control. Sure, everything’s still working, but is it really “better” or running the same?

  71. 71 gforrester

    “I believe you support the current system with 100% of it’s weaknesses.”

    Talk about reinterpreting words. I never said I 100% supported the current system and like many of the changes proposed by the CRC. You system seems to say remove all political parties and let everyone be independent and we can all select the best people for municipal jobs without letting any outside influence effect the decision. Honorable intent but probably not realistic.

    Jez the commission is 3-3-3 which is about as equal as you will get. Again nothing short of 9 – 0 unaffiliated would seem to satisify you.

    “it seems to me that with 66% of the Commission approved by either the DTC or RTC insuring political patronage would be a key element.”

    Your assumption is incorrect – the candidates that were selected who are registered Democrats were never approved by the DTC. I’m not a Republican so I can’t speak for them but again you make assumptions without validication just to reinforce your point. The DTC never had any slection process for members to the CRC – and were probably disapointed in at least two of those names being selected.

    Regarding the budget cuts you seem to think you have all the facts. There was no deal to restore the BOE funds versus budget cuts. If anything it would look more that the council wanted to “stick it” to the mayor then be a co-conspirator on the 07-08 budget. I never knew the political affilation of any town employee (other than those employed that are members of a town committee since that is readily published information) and honestly don’t care to. The budget surplus was as much as a result of receiving increased funds that were not anticipated. Good quality people lost their jobs and I’m sorry about that but bitterness should not cloud the facts and, while you are entitled to your opinion, the facts don’t bear it out.

    Amazing what you can do with statistics . Most “management” are experienced employees and are therefore older than new hires so they are likely to be between 40 and 60 so their age is more an equation of their experience. As far as employees that agree with the mayor according to you few if any exist so I guess the whole staff should have been fired under your senario. On your list you like to include people that either retired or found other positions in other towns.

    John Carroll – came out of retirement to take the PW job then retired 18 months later – was not fired – or publically flogged – just plain old retired as per the CT Post article.

    Ken Kellogg – the grant he was being paid by was going to expire and he resigned – again not fired – resigned and took another position in Westport/Weston

    Kim Correia – resigned – took another position elsewhere – no pink slip – no firing – just resigned as per the CT Post article.

    “Great! So you are saying you are in favor of removing the “at-will” status of Town employees from the Charter?: – No but I would consider it and would also review making them all civil service jobs, but if people aren’t doing their jobs to the level expected by the citizens (including the mayor), then there has to be a method by which they can be replaced. People say they want Stratford run like a business – then when it is run like a business – they say but I didn’t mean that way. I.E XYZ Landscaping has 4 employees, one keeps cutting down Mrs. Smith’s flower bed, boss calls him in after work and say’s “you’re gone”. It’s sad but it happens, nothing but death and taxes are guaranteed in this world and I don’t like either, but it’s reality.
    Jez it’s not both ways – elected officials are accountable to the people that elected them. You don’t like Miron, which is obvious, and so you rail against the system because he was elected and he will be accountable after 4 years time to the voters of Stratford You can’t impeach someone because you don’t like their decisions. If he did anything illegal, is prosecuted and convicted, then he would be out of office. It gets back to what form of government was adopted (and please don’t tell me the charter margin of victory because I was elected by only 1 vote and it still counts – thats a democracy). There are employment guidelines just get a copy from HR, and there are labor boards – grievance committees – and lawsuits for wrongful termination so there are pleanty of avenues for someone to pursue their claim of wrongful termination. No one should be fired because of their political affiliation, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, or simply disagreeing with the boss, but, and I keep hitting on this, there has to be a way for performance standards to be set and goals achieved and if they are not realized then changes have to be able to be made or you end up with an obstructionist government that is bogged down because no employee is held accountable.
    Jez you are very mistaken if you think that I agree with the “spoils” system and if I ran for mayor and was elected no one – and I repeat no one – would be hired based upon their political affiliation – how much money they raised for a town committee or campaign – and only the best qualified individuals (that’s always the most difficult because it is subjective and opinions differ) for the position for which they serve would be appointed. All I am doing is pointing out that the “spoils” system exists and is a realistic factor, that until is changed by a majority of elected officals, not just one or two, it will continue to infect our government at ALL levels not just locally.
    I appreciate your closing comments and I do feel that I care about this town, sometimes more that I should because it gets real frusterating to work towards goals and just have progress snatched out of our hands on more than one occasion by no fault or action we have taken. The arguments are not personal and are a great example of democracy at it’s finest when two people can have differing opinions and promote those views and in the end agree that even if consensious is not reached that bettering our government is the ultimate goal.

  72. Sudds,
    I don’t know where to begin? But I am going to try. It is because of folks like yourself that people like Ben Branyan and Elaine O’Keefe should “give up.” Ben and Elaine were two shining examples of what “public service” is all about. Both of them were OUTRIGHT FIRED by the mayor. Their replacements did not even come close to matching their dedication. You claim everything is going okay – so who cares what the mayor has done. How do you know? It may appear to be running smoothly, but time will produce the evidence of just how bad an administrator the mayor has been. Do you not care that the mayor rarely comes to work? Do you not care that his aides come and go as they please and are ripping off the taxpayers for every last time remaining in the treasury? I guess you don’t – because on the surface everything seems okay. Do you not care that employees are pitted against one another and encouraged to report disloyalty to the nazi police? I guess you don’t – because no one you know or care about is being affected. Gee, Sudds, that surely is the American way. It is true, with maybe a few exceptions, everyone he has fired or have been encourged to leave have been scooped up by other employers and they are all doing just fine. But all of those people were loyal, dedicated, public servants to the town. They served you Sudds in ways you will never know about and, I know – really don’t care about. Now, for Jezebel. You should thank her for providing you with this outlet. In fact, all of the residents of this community should be thankful for her and for the playwright before her. And, if in 2009, we are so fortunate to elect a dedicated public servant who cares about our town the way in which all of those who are no longer are serving – we would be very blessed indeed. Until such time, Sudds, count your blessings!

  73. 73 jezebel282

    Yeah..what she said!

  74. Sudds,
    To continue, count your blessings that for all those years you reaped the benefits of those hard-working dedicated employees who are no longer around. Count your blessings that you live in this beautiful community and have all that you have in this community because of the administrators that came before the mayor. Count your blessings that you could go to a restaurant in Stratford and know that the food is safe and the establishment is up to code – because of the standards set and administered by Elaine O’Keefe. I can go on all day and write a blog that would blow George off the map – but I am stopping now. Sudds, oh just never mind!

  75. 75 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester,

    “I appreciate your closing comments and I do feel that I care about this town, sometimes more that I should because it gets real frusterating to work towards goals and just have progress snatched out of our hands on more than one occasion by no fault or action we have taken. The arguments are not personal and are a great example of democracy at it’s finest when two people can have differing opinions and promote those views and in the end agree that even if consensious is not reached that bettering our government is the ultimate goal.”

    You’re welcome. You’ve earned it.

    “You system seems to say remove all political parties and let everyone be independent and we can all select the best people for municipal jobs without letting any outside influence effect the decision. Honorable intent but probably not realistic.”

    The goal is to strive for an effective government that serves the citizens. That is, in the end, the purpose of government. Somehow it got a little sidetracked in this Town. The past 15-20 years have seen so many political gang fights and driveby’s it’s almost no wonder Miron goes to Town Hall armed. Neither the DTC nor the RTC in this town represent anything resembling either national party. Whether it’s the fault of people like the Miron’s or Aldrich or Buturla is moot.
    The opportunity exists to remove some of that influence from at least the day to day operations of the Town. An independent salaried Town Attorney and removal of at will status are two powerful ways to do that. If the Town political committees want to keep battling, they can do so in the newspapers or blogs. Just not with our tax money.
    Removing at will status does NOT imply positions for life. Employees can still be terminated for cause like disobedience (that seems to be your favorite), insubordination, incompetence, absenteeism, etc. Right now and in the future it will depend on the mayor’s mood.

    “Jez the commission is 3-3-3 which is about as equal as you will get. Again nothing short of 9 – 0 unaffiliated would seem to satisify you.”

    I was simply pointing out that “equal” would be representative of the voting demographic. For example, the RTC has the least members. Yet they have “equal” representation on the CRC.

    “You don’t like Miron, which is obvious, and so you rail against the system because he was elected and he will be accountable after 4 years time to the voters of Stratford”

    Really? You think my dislike of Miron shows? There is something wrong when someone who was elected by only 34% of the voters and has the authority to essentially run amok for four years before anything can be done. That clearly doesn’t fall under the category of “accountable”.

    “There are employment guidelines just get a copy from HR, and there are labor boards – grievance committees – and lawsuits for wrongful termination so there are pleanty of avenues for someone to pursue their claim of wrongful termination.”

    Unfortunately and for whatever reason by the time these avenues are implemented YEARS will have passed. I am aware that this is a State issue. You or I might say, “No wait. I can’t do this because it is discriminatory and illegal”. But this mayor realizes that the penalties involved do not come out of his pocket. They come out of ours and he simply doesn’t care. In the meantime, those who were wrongfully terminated are unemployed and without health benefits. Two to three years of litigation are not viable avenues. Filing grievances only work if there is anyone left in your union.

    “there has to be a way for performance standards to be set and goals achieved and if they are not realized then changes have to be able to be made or you end up with an obstructionist government that is bogged down because no employee is held accountable.”

    I actually agree with you. I have never, not once, implied positions for life. There should be performance reviews, evaluations, additional training, etc. Again, I have never said no one should ever be fired. I am only asking for a reasonable process for it.

    “There was no deal to restore the BOE funds versus budget cuts. If anything it would look more that the council wanted to “stick it” to the mayor then be a co-conspirator on the 07-08 budget.”

    I’m sorry Mr. Forrester, but I simply don’t believe you. The list was given and the positions eliminated.

  76. 76 1george1

    Sudds & Cyclops,

    I have always contended that there is a time table for various situations.
    PCS has also pointed out how shelton tends to have cycles of pain and
    pleasure, as it relates to Taxes and Economic developments.

    PCS corrected me about Paul Hoydic’s probable relationship to Laura,
    and appeared to reinforce my contention about the C. R. C. ‘s lack of
    real INDEPENDENT thinkers or diversity of positions.

    ANY ONE NOTICE?
    Gavin has yet to take up my challenge on the INDEPENDENCE of the C. R. C.
    and whether it had predetermined Agenda.

    Hey PCS, please look up the terms COUNTERINTUTIVE, REACTIONARY, and
    PROACTIVE. Also synonyms for front men, straw men, bag men, and shell
    games. Also War gaming. WHY?

    My observation of Stratford politics is that they create pettifoggery,
    smoke and mirror, and counterintutive positions in order to manipulate
    public opinion and reactions for cover stories for courses of actions, like
    C. R. C. > # 1 & # 2
    FORM of GOVERNMENT
    ETHICS COMMISSION
    ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION changes
    TEAM STRATFORD > # 1, # 2, & now # 3
    SHAKESPEARE > S.F.T. # 1 & NOW # 2 – - K.K.P # 1 & # 2

    As Dick Miron said, and appears to have gotten it from RAY V
    “The Republicans do it to themselves, everytime.”

    Whereas I heard a rumor that BERCHEM / BURTURLA want nowhere near
    the Dick Miron Tombstone mess, experience tells me there is some sort
    of angle being played, which I have not figured out yet?

    As Mayor, Jim Miron could have had his own candidate to replace his dad
    as Registrar.
    Yet, a Republican changed parties and was seconded by Burturla, while
    Jim Miron was present. The entire Miron faction backed the recently
    converted Republican publicly backed by Burturla.
    The conversion from one party to another has to be done AT LEAST 3 months
    in advance. If Dick Burturla is seconding the man, who seems like a decent guy,
    then it sure appears that Burturla and the Mirons knew for several months
    that an alternative was going to be needed.
    GAVIN nominated and voted for Fredette, who also voted for himself and lost
    53 to 7.

    Things are so BAD in the Stratford Democratic Party, they could not find a
    SINGLE, REAL, LONG TERM, DEMOCRAT to become REGISTRAR and needed a
    former (supposedly) Republican?
    Do the Republicans now completely control the Registrar’s office, the way
    the Burturla family controls the Police and Town Attorney Offices?

    Is Jim Miron being set up?

    Is Jim Miron knowingly and willingly going along with being set up?

  77. I think Mr. Forrester enjoyed the loss of “good quality people” as much as the mayor delighted in introducing it. In fact, I think Mr. Forrester enjoyed participating in that massacre, and you did participate in it, Mr. Forrester.

  78. 78 jezebel282

    Cyclops,

    Now THERE is a piece of news. Could it be that Mr. Forrester favored removing Donna Best and that’s why there is a little tension with Mr. Best?

  79. 79 gforrester

    Cyclops the entire council approved the budget cuts so depending on your defination of “participated” I guess we all did. You are incorrect in the fact that I enjoy the loss of good quality people but nothing I say will change your mind. Nothing against the fine job Elaine did but I don’t recall any rash of illnesses being reported in area restaurants so I don’t think the standards have decreased to the extent that you are portraying.

  80. 80 gforrester

    Jez using your logic if I wanted to get rid of Donna and the “deal” was in with the Mayor I would have held out my vote until I got what I wanted don’t ya think? Besides my oppinion doesn’t matter because she works for the Mayor not me lol. I don’t agree with all their decision regarding EMS as Jon, as you can see, doesn’t agree with all of my decisions made on the council.

    No I think Jon and I just simply disagree what is best direction for the Town’s future. Nothing personal on my part anyway. Now Connery – that was another subject lol. He and I did not get along one bit, but when he wanted to he could be a personable fellow. Talk about employees rights I was one of the people that lead the charge years ago that the volunteers be treated fairly and given the protection of “employee” status so they could not be terminated willy nilly because Mr. Connery didn’t like them.

    Gavin

  81. 81 gforrester

    Gavin has yet to take up my challenge on the INDEPENDENCE of the C. R. C.
    and whether it had predetermined Agenda.

    George I never voted for anyone to be on the CRC with any predetermined agenda, didn’t speak at their hearing to avoid trying to influence their decisions, and never spoke to any of them during their deliberations to try and sway them one way or the other. I gave them some issues to look at from the council report to them and that was it. I read the minutes and there was some close votes on issues and hot debates and in the end they all came together to pass proposed amendments to the council without the need for a majority/minority report and for that I applause them for their efforts to reach compromise.

  82. 82 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester,

    I have no logic. I was just guessing that time. Maybe Cyclops knows the answer.

  83. 83 justanotherreader

    “Cyclops the entire council approved the budget cuts so depending on your defination of “participated” I guess we all did.”

    Gavin, but you did have a more direct involvement in eliminating those people, didn’t you. In fact you made the motion to eliminate their salaries from the budget. So you were more than just a passive participant, right?

  84. 84 gforrester

    Reader – shame you can’t go back to posts from last year – Yes I made the motion – never denied that – and yes I supported the cuts and no one opposed them so it’s semantics to argue passive or not. I’m one of those rare Democrats that don’t believe in big government and since there was a Republican move to eliminate 6 jobs from the Parks Department as well as not fund the additional police officers I supported reducing those 6 management positions and not those of the on the street personel. I even testified to thta fact at the labor hearing and was accused of “covering” for the Mayor. So depending on which person is posting I am either covering for the Mayor or an “active participant” Your actually helping to make the Town case against the union contention that there was no “deal” between the Mayor and the Council – thanks.

  85. “Nothing against the fine job Elaine did but I don’t recall any rash of illnesses being reported in area restaurants so I don’t think the standards have decreased to the extent that you are portraying.”

    Does this mean that the standards that the restaurants were held to, by Elaine O’Keefe, are okay to be lowered? I heard, directly from a restaurant owner that he was pleased when Elaine O’Keefe was replaced because she wouldn’t “let him slide” on a few things. I think he felt like Miron did him a favor on this. Is this type of treatment really OK? The “selling point” shouldn’t be that people haven’t become ill, but that standards to which eateries are held should not be relaxed under any circumstances. We can all agree that Elaine O’Keefe’s position was terminated. My recollection was that no definitive reason was ever given. Do you really expect us to believe there was “just cause” for that? Employees who refused to conform to the Miron way or do what he ordered have been removed and replaced.

  86. 86 jezebel282

    I sure hope Sudds is out there reading some of this. I guess I am not the only one who cares.

    Mr. Forrester:

    Can you understand the basic distrust of the Mayor and the Council most of us have now? It will take years to rebuild faith in our own government.

  87. Oh there was a deal between the council and the mayor – make no mistake about that. And there is a councilman willing to testify to that very fact. Mr. Forrester, you say you are a rare Democrat who doesn’t believe in big government. Sometime in your career were’nt you a Republican who crossed over because you did not have your way with the party? You have your hands into everything. You have some interesting skeletons in your closet, so I have heard from several inside EMS people. You are not holier than thou as you would have us all believe. And, you enjoyed participating in the supervisor massacre. True, the entire council participated – but, you were the leader of the pack because that gave you political excitement. There was no opposition because the whole act was orchestrated, well in advance.
    How do you know what is going on with the restaurants and what they are now getting away with? When a communicable health issue does surface, it will be too late! You speak like a typical politician.

  88. 88 sudds

    Not for nothing, but again… we’re only hearing one side of the story hear!!!

    PCS… do you know what type of hoops Ms. O’Keefe was making this restaurateur jump through? How do I/we know that it wasn’t that famous “little something as a sign of appreciation”??? Now I’m not saying that this is the case… but I’m also not saying that it wasn’t the case!

    And as for Mrs. Blumstein… could she really have been foolish enough to think that she’d keep her job when a new mayor was brought on? I mean seriously… do you think that Jack Welch’s secretary (sorry… admin asst) was asked to stick around when Immelt took over? How about George Bush’s executive admin asst? Do you think that she’ll be kept around in January? Seriously…. WAKE UP people… you all have seriously GOT to get out of town (and the 1950′s) a little more often!!!

    Here’s an idea… instead of logging on and whining about your wife being fired… how about if YOU run for election??? Otherwise… please drop it because there is NOTHING you can do about it… and you are all just starting to sound like a bunch of whiny little children!!! (WOW… who would have ever thought that I’d be the mature one?)

    Anyway… obviously this whole topic goes WAY beyond politics into the realm of personal (wives, friends, etc) issues… so there is really not going to be any appeasing people. So I’m done with this subject!!!

  89. 89 mikereynolds

    Wow…has some hijacked Sudds’ account?

    Don’t sugar coat it Sudds….tell us how you feel about this. Holding things in isn’t healthy.

  90. Sudds – you seem to have a lot of knowledge about “little something for appreciation.” What is your line of work? Making that insinuation about Elain O’Keefe is proof – you are personal, and out to destroy people – you claim to know nothing about.

    We are doing a lot about it – just by maintaining this avenue of communication. And, by the way, the mayor prior to his election, said he would be firing no one. Read the CT Post articles during his campaign – especially the story he told the editorial board in order to secure its endorsement.

    Sudds, you are not mature, you are dangerous. Be careful.

  91. 91 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    “could she really have been foolish enough to think that she’d keep her job when a new mayor was brought on?”

    You mean after Miron told her repeatedly for 9 months that her job was not in jeopardy and that she was essential?

    Silly her, huh? She acted just like..a voter. She believed him.

    “And as for Mrs. Blumstein”

    And Mr. Branyan? And Ms. Toolan? And Ms. Naylor? And Ms. Murphy? And Ms Tiernan? What was their crime? How foolish were they? Should all employees just submit their resignations right after each election?

    “So I’m done with this subject!!!”

    Whew! That’s good, since you obviously know nothing about this particular subject. The more you say on this the less intelligent you seem. You keep missing the point. This mayor (and apparently some Councilmen) had no regard whatsoever for the job people did. They were more interested in exercising power than either people’s jobs or the benefit of the citizens.

    Elaine O’Keefe is now at Yale/New Haven doing excellent work there. Diane Toolan is bringing in money for the City of Bridgeport. Branyan is making 50% more than Miron doing the same job. Blumstein, Naylor and Nicholson are also doing the same job except for someone else.

    Just scroll up and look at the top of blog. It now costs triple the amount for less work.

    Who suffers? The citizens. Get it?

  92. 92 gforrester

    Does this mean that the standards that the restaurants were held to, by Elaine O’Keefe, are okay to be lowered?

    Answer in short is it depends what specific standards your addressing. Is there a real difference between a stainless steel sink being 8 inches or 6 inches from the meat slicer, probably not, if we’re talking about hand washing by employees and proper temperature to store food then yes. As far as I am aware no standards have been dramitically changed unless you can tell me otherwise that they have.

    “I heard, directly from a restaurant owner that he was pleased when Elaine O’Keefe was replaced because she wouldn’t “let him slide” on a few things.”

    Shame on that Rest. Owner. – I wouldn’t eat there if I knew who you were referring to.

    “Is this type of treatment really OK?”

    PC when did I ever say it was Ok or that Elaine should have been let go. I didn’t make the call to change her the Mayor did.

    “The “selling point” shouldn’t be that people haven’t become ill, but that standards to which eateries are held should not be relaxed under any circumstances.”

    My point is that standards regarding public health could not have been reduced or I think we as citizens would see an obvious adverse reaction. Let’s find out if the standards have been changed 1st and if they have I will address it.

    “Do you really expect us to believe there was “just cause” for that? Employees who refused to conform to the Miron way or do what he ordered have been removed and replaced. ”

    PC I am not asking you or expecting you to believe anything so please don’t be putting words in my mouth. I wasn’t privy to the meeting that she was removed and I can’t get access to her personnel file as I am not authorized to do so.

  93. 93 sudds

    Cyclops… please read my post again… I did NOT make an insinuation about Ms. O’Keefe… I just throw out a simple “what if” to showcase that we do NOT know all of the facts! And judging by your twisting… and not refuting… of it, then I can assume that I am correct in my assumption that we do not knwo the entire story!

    PS… If I seem to have a lot of knowledge then it’s only from watching “The Godfather”, “Goodfellas” and “The Sopranos”!!!

  94. 94 jezebel282

    “do you know what type of hoops Ms. O’Keefe was making this restaurateur jump through? How do I/we know that it wasn’t that famous “little something as a sign of appreciation”???”

    Sudds, you should think about that the next time you walk into Walmart, Shaw’s or Home Depot. It is extremely unlikely that would be anything more than the toxic dump it was except for the work of Elaine O’Keefe.

    Oh wait…that’s right. You have no idea what these people did, do you? They were just Town employees that had to go. So sad, huh?

  95. 95 gforrester

    “Can you understand the basic distrust of the Mayor and the Council most of us have now? It will take years to rebuild faith in our own government.”

    As long as governments have existed there has been a level of distrust and I can understand your feelings. I will just keep doing the best job as a councilman that I an do and let history be the judge.

  96. 96 sudds

    “Elaine O’Keefe is now at Yale/New Haven doing excellent work there. Diane Toolan is bringing in money for the City of Bridgeport. Branyan is making 50% more than Miron doing the same job. Blumstein, Naylor and Nicholson are also doing the same job except for someone else.”

    Yet somehow the town goes on???

    Would you care for some cheese to go with all of that whine Mr. Jez???

  97. “PCS… do you know what type of hoops Ms. O’Keefe was making this restaurateur jump through? How do I/we know that it wasn’t that famous “little something as a sign of appreciation”??? Now I’m not saying that this is the case… but I’m also not saying that it wasn’t the case!”

    Sudds ~ I know you want to end this subject, but I’ve got to be clear. it wasn’t a hand-out, that’s for sure. There were standards that she wanted the restauranteur to conform with and wouldn’t budge or bend. I went to this restaurant this one and only time – it was mediocre at best. I would have expected more based on the chef’s schooling. While I don’t recall the exact comment, he made it point-blank clear that he was happy Elaine O’Keefe was gone because it was the only way he was able to get his restaurant opened.

    I don’t have any family or friends who were victims of Miron’s axe. I don’t work for the Town. My husband works for the BOE, as a custodian, no big-paying, money sucking jobs for us. I also have relatives who work in the PD. That’s about it.

    Also, I met Pat Blumstein once – she is an unbelievably pleasant woman. I’ve met and spoken to Dave Blumstein a handful of times at CRC meetings and TC meetings. He is just as nice. Pat, as the executive secretary or adminsitrative assistant – whatever the politically correct terminology is – had a wealth of knowledge and experience. She worked for Mark Barnhart, Mike Feeney and Ben Branyan – while they were Town Managers. She wasn’t replaced when Mark Barnhart left, she wasn’t replaced when Mike Feeney left. All I am saying is that it would’ve behooved him to keep her. Instead, he removed her and replaced her with a completely inexperienced individual – Ashley Haydu. She was his legal secretary in his one-lawyer “law firm.” And then, when the opportunity opened up, he moved her into his mayoral aide position.

    My final question: who are you and what did you do with the nice Sudds?

  98. Sudds, you really need a bath. So, take some time this weekend to jump in the washing machine and have a thorough cleansing. At this time, you are very dirty.

  99. 99 sudds

    Mike… nobody has hijacked my account… I’m just sick of all of the whining!

    Gavin… is there any way you can get Mrs. Blumstein her job back so that we can get finally Jez to get over it???

  100. 100 gforrester

    Sometime in your career were’nt you a Republican who crossed over because you did not have your way with the party?”

    No I crossed over because I was tired on the national level of the Republican Party being controlled by people like the late Rev. Fallwell and by some actions of members of the Town Committee perpertrated against me, maybe you know some of the players or were one yourself lol.

    “You have some interesting skeletons in your closet, so I have heard from several inside EMS people. You are not holier than thou as you would have us all believe.”

    Ah I wondered at the timing of your return to active blogging – we have Mironistis and now maybe Bestites lol. Never claimed to be holier than thou or cast the first stone. Don’t try and tell others how to live there life either.

    “You speak like a typical politician” – And Cyclops you seem to want engage in the politics of person destruction so I guess you act like a typical politican lol.

  101. 101 jezebel282

    “Yet somehow the town goes on???

    Would you care for some cheese to go with all of that whine Mr. Jez???”

    See, here’s the thing, Ms. Sudds. We are now paying much more for much less. It may not matter to you that you’re taxes went up 21+% since Miron took office. It does to other taxpayers. There’s a REASON these people were let go. Some objected to creating a budget just to see it transferred (mostly to the Town Attorney). Some refused to do anything illegal. Others just plain old refused to lie.

    I suppose in your business “nearly adequate” is perfectly acceptable.

    If I were you Sudds, I wouldn’t render judgment on something about which you have absolutely no clue. You may find in 19 months that the Town is not doing so well after all. Stick to the jokes.

  102. Sudds ~

    I think Pat is very happy where she is.

    I certainly am not whining and I haven’t heard Jeze say one thing about Pat – I think I’m the one who made reference to her.

    I just an not sold on your theory that everything in Town Hall is “just fine.” I’m sorry if I ruffled your feathers, perhaps a couple shots will take the edge off….. :>D

  103. 103 sudds

    “My final question: who are you and what did you do with the nice Sudds?”

    PCS… it’s still me… I just think that I’m being asked to drink out of only one side of the Kool-Aid cup, and accept everyting spoken here as infallable!!!

    For example… as Gavin pointed out… “it depends what specific standards your addressing”. I think we can all agree that some issues that keep a restaurant from opening are far worse than others. For instance, if the restaurant had a rat problem I would find that to be a major issue. However, if the doorway was 29.5 inches wide instead of 30 inches wide… I could care less!!! My point is that I do NOT know all of the facts, nor will I accept one persons “logic” as all of the facts!!!

    As for Mrs. Blumstein… here’s a question for everyone… when the new mayor is sworn in (assuming it’s not Miron)… Ashley Haydu will the active employee with the most experience in her position… judging by you all are saying… should the new mayor be forced to keep her???

  104. 104 gforrester

    “Gavin… is there any way you can get Mrs. Blumstein her job back so that we can get finally Jez to get over it???”

    Yea run for and get elected Mayor in 18 months LOL – short of that there is nothing that the Town Council can do per the charter.

  105. 105 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester,

    “Bestite”?

    I don’t think Cyclops qualifies.

  106. 106 jezebel282

    Mr. Forrester,

    “short of that there is nothing that the Town Council can do per the charter.”

    Can you tell us what Ashley’s job is as a mayoral “aide” yet?

    (Other than being snippy and rude).

  107. 107 gforrester

    Don’t know Cyclops well enough – just interesting the reference to my volunteering 20 + years with EMS and nothing about my 8 + years on Zoning/Council. Anyway I’m not going to engage in who spit on the sidewalk personal distruction because there are far to many issues facing this town for personal attacks. Want to talk about issues, fine, want to talk about skeletons, rumors, Clandestine conspiracies I have more important things to do than waste the keystrokes (And I not that good a typist so those two fingers do get tired banging away on this keyboard lol)

  108. 108 gforrester

    Does she get coffee? – if so that might be one (just kidding folks) Sorry I have been tired up in meetings the past few nights and I know I owe you that email, i’ll get it to you tonight.

  109. 109 sudds

    “If I were you Sudds, I wouldn’t render judgment on something about which you have absolutely no clue.”

    Umm… THIS IS MY POINT!!!

    The fact that I refuse to buy into the idea of “Miron is an A-hole because (just like every other head official ever elected) he wanted his own people in place” does NOT mean that I am rendering judgement!!!

    The simple fact is that all I am doing is offering people points to ponder in opposition to all of the Kool-Aid being passed around… but it seems like those offering up the Kool-Aid don’t like it!!!

  110. Sudds ~

    Point taken, but I don’t think it was that cut and dry (a doorway). I think it was a little more than that. I too prefer to hear all sides.

  111. 111 jezebel282

    Mr Forrester,

    “I know I owe you that email, i’ll get it to you tonight.”

    Thank you.

    “Don’t know Cyclops well enough”

    I have a pretty good idea. And Cyclops’ information is ALWAYS accurate.

    “just interesting the reference to my volunteering 20 + years with EMS”

    I have always said that there was a big difference between driving an ambulance and chasing one.

    But you should state events accurately and clearly. It will benefit you greatly in the future.

  112. Why does it matter what I am? If I’m a Mironistis or a Bestite or a Costelloite, or whatever. And there is no better expert in the political practice of personal destruction than you Mr. Forrester. I have watched you for a long time and the Oscar belongs to you.

    Sudds, from here on in, the standards have been established by this mayor. All “at will” and appointed by the mayor employees will be replaced. This is the way it will be. What was wrong with it being done was that the mayor who got elected, campaigned and promised, he would not replace employees. He lied to gain support and get elected.

  113. 113 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    Anybody ever mention to you that you were a tad stubborn?

    “but it seems like those offering up the Kool-Aid don’t like it!!!”

    When you know what really happens, you’ll find that you’re reminded of the taste of that kool-aide instantly. Your position sounds like a pitcher full of it.

  114. 114 sudds

    “Sudds, from here on in, the standards have been established by this mayor. All “at will” and appointed by the mayor employees will be replaced.”

    Hence the reason I think we should all vote for JON BEST… JON is the BEST thing to ever to happen to Stratford, and only a fool would vote against him!!!

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Psst… what’s your e-mail again Mr. Best… my resume has been updated!!!

  115. 115 sudds

    “Anybody ever mention to you that you were a tad stubborn?”

    Actually… my wife mentions several times a day!!!

  116. Hey Sudds, I have one final inquiry of you. You are so much on the Blumstein case – let me ask you – if the mayor messed up your wife’s life – in a mean-spirited and cowardly and vicious manner – what would you do?

  117. 117 gforrester

    I would like to thank the Academy for this Oscar and thank the director, producer, my supporting cast , for without them I could have never achieved this award, all the people involved with editing, make-up (god only knows I could use some) and hair sytlists (what little is left on the top of my head) wardrobe, my stunt double, drivers, grips, lighting, ………Oh I hear the music so time to cut the speach short……And anyone else I have forgotten to mention (Cyclops).

    This will go up on my mantle next to the Golden Ass that George presented me at a council meeting.

    And Sudds – you jumped ship fast lol.

  118. 118 sudds

    What ship??? You’re not running for anything yet!!!!

    You run for mayor and I’ll kiss your too!!!

  119. 119 sudds

    “Hey Sudds, I have one final inquiry of you. You are so much on the Blumstein case – let me ask you – if the mayor messed up your wife’s life – in a mean-spirited and cowardly and vicious manner – what would you do?”

    Cyclops… if my worked worked in a political position (and before you start… an at-will position with the town IS political) and a new administration came into power (again before you begin… the Repubs have been in power forever… a Dem winning the election represented a change administration)… I can only hope that she would be wise enough to realize that she probably needs to update her resume!

    PS… luckily my wife’s job is not her life, so getting fired from her job would not “mess up her life”!!! But I can appreciate the melodramatic approach you’re going for here!!! Perhaps you should start preparing an acceptance speech like Gavin’s above!!!

  120. You are a heartless and non-caring person.

  121. 121 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    Wow!

    I hope that you are never a supervisor depending on the support of staff. I have a feeling you’re not going to get it.

  122. 122 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    “if my worked worked in a political position (and before you start… an at-will position with the town IS political) and a new administration came into power (again before you begin… the Repubs have been in power forever… a Dem winning the election represented a change administration)… I can only hope that she would be wise enough to realize that she probably needs to update her resume!”

    You should really do your homework before you show your heartlessness. No one was at at-will employee who was there before Miron took office.

    § 9.7.1. Continuation of Terms of Office or Employment.
    All officers and employees of the Town, members of the Council, and members of boards, commissions boards, commissions and committees of the Town shall continue in office until such office terminates by operation of laws in effect prior to the effective date of this Charter or until such office terminates by death, incapacity, resignation or removal for cause of such person.
    Thereafter, successor or incumbent officers shall be chosen in the manner provided by this Charter.

    So, you can take your at-will argument and…..

  123. Sudds,

    I am the real thing. I am not a phony. I don’t need an acceptance speech and someday I want to meet you in person and go toe-to-toe. And, oh, by the way, unlike you, I have paid my dues.

  124. 124 jezebel282

    Cyclops?

    Will this be a pay-per-view event?

    And more importantly, do I get a cut?

  125. 125 sudds

    “I am the real thing. I am not a phony”

    Then why didn’t you answer my question???

    I’ll repeat it so you don’t have to go searching for it…

    here’s a question for everyone… when the new mayor is sworn in (assuming it’s not Miron)… Ashley Haydu will be the active employee with the most experience in her position… judging by what you all are saying… you think that the new mayor should be forced to keep her??? (since you don’t want her to be an at-will employee and all)

  126. 126 sudds

    “I don’t need an acceptance speech and someday I want to meet you in person and go toe-to-toe”

    WOW… physical threats in a factual debate? How lame! Why don’t you just admit that my point is valid, quit your whining… and we can all move on!?!?!?

    PS… do you REALLY think that this would be in your best interest??? I am NOT a small man who plays rugby for FUN!!!

  127. 127 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    “you think that the new mayor should be forced to keep her??? (since you don’t want her to be an at-will employee and all)”

    As Mayor Moron himself said at his presentation in front of the CRC, all the people he has hired were hired as at will employees “and they are fine with that”.

    If you can read, NONE of the people he fired were at-will.

    For some strange reason, you seem to actually want political hacks, family members, clients and business associates of whoever is mayor to run your town.

  128. 128 sudds

    “If you can read, NONE of the people he fired were at-will”

    Again… this is not my point… my point is that I (nor does anyone who can logically look at an arguement) do not know why these people were “fired” (your word not mine)! Hearing only Mrs. Blumstein’s (or whoever’s) side of the story is just NOT the complete picture!!!

    “For some strange reason, you seem to actually want political hacks, family members, clients and business associates of whoever is mayor to run your town.”

    Nope… the rationale for my question was to prove the point that you are taking this argument beyond factual and into the realm of personal! It’s OBVIOUS that the answer to this question is that you no, you do not want Ashley kept on… yet you are also against people working in an enviroment where they fear for their job!!!

    So you wanted protection from a new administration for Mrs. Blumstein, but not for Ashley?!?!?! Umm… you can only pick ONE side to the debate… unless of course you want to be able to pick basd on the individual… oh wait… you’re against that too!!!

  129. Sudds,
    Your question has been answered. Move-on school yard bully.

  130. 130 sudds

    PS… does anyone happen to have the portion of the “old” Charter showing that these employees were not at-will???

  131. 131 sudds

    Cy…

    LOL… YOU start physical threats, and I’m the bully???

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!

  132. 132 jezebel282

    Sudds!

    “So you wanted protection from a new administration for Mrs. Blumstein, but not for Ashley?!?!?! Umm… you can only pick ONE side to the debate… unless of course you want to be able to pick basd on the individual… oh wait… you’re against that too!!!”

    Sigh….you are missing my point entirely and I am not sure why.

    Mr. Forrester was kind enough to send the mayoral “aide” job descriptions to me. I am in the process of converting them into a format that can be posted here. That will happen soon.

    The POINT I am trying to make is that we now pay $146,000+ for 3 secretaries instead of one. For less work. But that is only one example.

    We HAD an award winning health director, now we have a lesser one. We had an effective grant writer, now we have one that has never written a grant. We had an award winning Town Clerk with 39 years of experience, now we have a lesser one. We had a very effective Economic Development Director, now we have none. We had an extremely talented Chief Administrative Officer, now we are paying him more plus the same amount for his not-so-effective replacement. We had an effective Chief of Police, now we have the Town Attorney’s brother.

    This is what happens when you have a mayor that cares nothing about the Town and everything about his own power and ego. The evidence is very clear. These are examples of the way he exercises the power of his office.

    The Council has a chance to change that. I do not believe the voters in this Town (except you) want a government of lesser qualified people.

  133. 133 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    “PS… does anyone happen to have the portion of the “old” Charter showing that these employees were not at-will???”

    That’s irrelevant. The Town operates under the existing charter. Obviously the first CRC didn’t want everyone fired as soon as the new Charter took effect. Thus:

    § 9.7.1. Continuation of Terms of Office or Employment.
    All officers and employees of the Town, members of the Council, and members of boards, commissions boards, commissions and committees of the Town shall continue in office until such office terminates by operation of laws in effect prior to the effective date of this Charter or until such office terminates by death, incapacity, resignation or removal for cause of such person.
    Thereafter, successor or incumbent officers shall be chosen in the manner provided by this Charter.

  134. 134 sudds

    Jez,

    I totally see (and actually agree with) your points… however why do you find it so diffcult to see mine (or is it because they rationalize that your fight is really one of a personal nature)???

    See that list that you wrote above… the one about how we now have “lesser” employees being paid more? Have you ever stopped to think about the fact that campaign to have “at will” removed DOES NOTHING BUT PROTECT THEM!?!?!?

    I feel bad that your wife/friend/family member got let go… but isn’t it time that we stop living in the past and instead move on to mae our town BETTER?!?!!?

  135. 135 sudds

    “removal for cause of such person”

    Again… once your PROVE that the terminations were NOT for “for cause”… I’ll back you!

    But quite frankly… the whining of someone who was let go (I’d bet that 90+% of people fired “for cause” would say that there was no cause… so that doesn’t count in my eyes) does NOT constitute proof in my eyes!!!

  136. 136 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    “I feel bad that your wife/friend/family member got let go… but isn’t it time that we stop living in the past and instead move on to mae our town BETTER?!?!!?”

    Again, moving on is exactly the point. Retaining the at-will clause causes serious damage to the future of this Town. We lose experience, knowledge and dedication with each new mayor.

    The same is true for the lack of a salaried Town Attorney. As long as we have a Town Attorney that serves at the pleasure of the mayor we only have the mayor’s attorney. not a Town Attorney.

    “Again… once your PROVE that the terminations were NOT for “for cause”… I’ll back you!”

    LOL!

    The only “cause” they were fired for was cause Miron didn’t like them. Just think about it for a second, Sudds. He fired all of these people yet he’s keeping the Democratic Registrar of Voters who just got arrested? He hired Mark Haddad despite…well never mind. If you don’t know what PYE is you’ve probably never heard of Mark Haddad either.

  137. 137 sudds

    Again… “fired” is your word not mine!!!

    “”The only “cause” they were fired for was cause Miron didn’t like them. ”

    I’M STILL AWAITING YOUR PROOF???

    “Just think about it for a second, Sudds. He fired all of these people yet he’s keeping the Democratic Registrar of Voters who just got arrested?”

    Have you ever heard of “innocent until proven guilty”??? I’m actually glad he hasn’t fired his father yet (can he even do that?) or else that would be a slam-dunk victory when Dick sues the town!!! (does a registrar really do anything anyway?)

    “He hired Mark Haddad despite…well never mind. If you don’t know what PYE is you’ve probably never heard of Mark Haddad either.”

    Yes, I’ve heard of Haddad… and what was he found guilty of again??? If I bring a frivolous claim against Mrs. Blumstein will treat her the same and finally quit whining about her firing???

    Again Jezzy… I understand the Goebbels–like spin (there ya go George… nice and teed-up for ya again) you’re trying to sell everyone… but without FACTS your argument is just doesn’t have a leg to stand on!!!

  138. 138 jezebel282

    Sudds,

    Why do you keep bringing up Pat Blumstein? Why not Ben Branyan, Pat Naylor, Diane Toolan, Eileen Murphy, Mary Tiernan?

    Do you have a problem with “Blumstein”?

  139. 139 sudds

    Because every time I do you feel the need to change the subject and not answer my questions/address issues I raise… so it must be a sweet spot of yours!!!

    Either that or you just don’t have a logical/proof-based response!

  140. 140 jezebel282

    “Because every time I do you feel the need to change the subject and not answer my questions/address issues I raise… so it must be a sweet spot of yours!!!”

    I just wondered if you had some sort of anti-semetic feelings.

    I only have one subject. Making this town better.

    Not only do I know Ms. Blumstein, I also know Pat Ulatowski, Ben Branyan, Diane Toolan, Mike Imbro, Pat Naylor…..and others who still work for the Town. But putting their names here will get them fired. That’s the way it is under Miron.

    I have heard the conditions under which they were dismissed and as not being one of them I can only tell you that there was no “cause” for which they were dismissed. Some of them have ongoing litigation with the Town so it is unlikely they will step forward and blog here for your benefit. Which leaves us at the point of discussing whether at will is good for the town or not.

    Obviously, you think it benefits the town to dismiss all employees every 4 years. I do not.

  141. 141 sudds

    “I just wondered if you had some sort of anti-semetic feelings”

    Great… now you’re tring to sick George on me! And no… I do not have any anti-semetic feelings… I actually just became God-Father to my Jewish friend’s son (his wife is Catholic, and we all know how that goes)

    “Not only do I know Ms. Blumstein, I also know Pat Ulatowski, Ben Branyan, Diane Toolan, Mike Imbro, Pat Naylor…..and others who still work for the Town”

    If I bring unproven harrassment suits against all of them (as happened to Haddad) will you then move on???

    “But putting their names here will get them fired. That’s the way it is under Miron.”

    Once again… PROOF PLEASE!!! This is your opinion… and we all know what opinions are like!!!

    “I have heard the conditions under which they were dismissed”

    Who have you hear this from???

    “and as not being one of them I can only tell you that there was no “cause” for which they were dismissed.”

    If you’re not one of them… how can you tell me that there was no cause???

    “Obviously, you think it benefits the town to dismiss all employees every 4 years.”

    Nope… but I am a realist!!!

  142. 142 jezebel282

    “If I bring unproven harrassment suits against all of them (as happened to Haddad) will you then move on???”

    If you employer settles multiple suits and you hire convicted felons, yup, I will move on. (Remember, these cases weren’t simply filed. It cost those Towns piles of cash.)

    “Once again… PROOF PLEASE!!! This is your opinion… and we all know what opinions are like!!!”

    I can only speak for me (as usual). When I was walking petitions for Charter Revision I happened to meet several current Town Employees. When I asked them to sign it they invariably asked who would see it. The answer, of course, was “the Town Clerk and probably the Town Attorney and the Mayor”. They would look at the petition like it contained leprosy and say “Are you crazy? You know what will happen to me if I sign that??!!!” some would literally run away.

    “If you’re not one of them… how can you tell me that there was no cause???”

    When an honorable and ethical person you have known for years tells you about an event they participated in, you believe that the event occurred. Otherwise what good are honor and ethics? Can you tell me, on the other hand, that there was cause because Miron is honorable and ethical?

    We are at an impasse here, Sudds. You know none of these people and I do. There is no argument I can personally use. If you wish, FOI their personnel records and read their evaluations for the last 20 years or so.

    “Nope… but I am a realist!!!”

    “Realism” does not imply you simply give up and let others decide what is best you you.

  143. 143 sudds

    How much of what you just wrote would be admissible in court???

  144. 144 jezebel282

    We’ll find out won’t we?

    (Miron already lost one case)

    This, by the way, is not a court. I do not required redacted documentation, sworn testimony or even a jury to blog here.

    If the only thing that will sway you is a court decision, make a donation to Miron’s next campaign. Then when he loses the court cases, ask for your money back.

  145. 145 sudds

    “This, by the way, is not a court. I do not required redacted documentation, sworn testimony or even a jury to blog here.”

    Thank god… or else you wouldn’t be able to post on your own blog!!!

    “If the only thing that will sway you is a court decision”

    I don’t need a court decision, but (unlike yourself) believing that “so-and-so said such-and-such” is just NOT enough information for me to base an opinion on!!!

  146. 146 jezebel282

    “Thank god… or else you wouldn’t be able to post on your own blog!!!”

    Sudds, I have yet to see you post anything with similar requirements.

    “I don’t need a court decision, but (unlike yourself) believing that “so-and-so said such-and-such” is just NOT enough information for me to base an opinion on!!!”

    And if your wife came home and told you she was…harassed at work (just an example)…would you believe her or would you require her to provide a video?

  147. 147 jonbest

    I made these comments to the Town Council tonight. The issue was tabled until the next meeting based on the information I provided. I feel strongly about this and felt I should share it with all of you. Please feel free to comment. Apparently this is what $500,000.00 will buy you.

    My name is Jonathan Best and I live at_____________.

    I am here to comment on pending resolution that is on the agenda to set the Mayor’s salary at $125,000. As a fiscal conservative I felt I had to comment. At the present time our community is in a crisis. Taxes are impacting on all our lives. The cost of items, as food, utilities and gasoline effect our lives and our ability to secure things we need. Many years ago public service paid very little and the difference was made up by benefits. As the salaries changed the benefits remained. Now the pension liability clearly out paces the tax payer’s ability to pay for future.

    Some may feel that this adjusted Mayoral salary will attract better candidates. A person does not and should not join public service to be enriched. They should believe in the ability of the government to improve all our lives. There are many other factors that people join public service. The quality of candidate is not determined by salary it is determined by other factors. Candidates for Mayor should be running to contribute to the community, improve our Town and to make all of our lives better. It should not be about the salary.

    How is it that other towns can attract effective mayors who make significantly less than $125,000? How does Milford, Wallingford, East Hartford and West Haven manage to attract effective Mayors? It is not the salary. A salary of $125,000.00 will place the Stratford Mayor among the highest paid in the state. In these fiscal times when people are having homes foreclosed and are losing jobs taxes should not contribute to their indebtedness. The present Mayoral salary is fair and sufficient.

    Review of salaries in Connecticut demonstrates that the mayoral salaries for Mayors of Towns run from $29,000 to $115,000. The amount of salary mentioned in this resolution is a 38% increase for the next Mayor. This is much too high. When municipal unions only get 2 or 3% a year for the term of contracts how can we justify adjusting the Mayoral salary this way. To have a salary of $125,000 is not in the interest of this Town. All of us are feeling the pinch of increasing prices and we all need relief. How does a Mayor tell people he serves that he understands their struggle when his salary is $65,300.00 above the individual mean income of $59,750.00 in Stratford.

    Do I think the Mayor salary should be adjusted yes, it would be unrealistic not to. However any increase to the Mayor’s salary should be either a Cost of Living increase or 2% a year. A potential candidate for Mayor knows the salary structure when they decide to run for office and this decision should not be solely financial in nature.

    For informational purposes I have reviewed salaries of Mayors in other towns. My findings are as follows:

    Municipality Population Title Salary
    Branford 29,089 First Selectman $90,312
    Bridgeport 139,008 Mayor $121,184
    East Hartford 49,173 Mayor $78,723
    Fairfield 57,813 First Selectman $111,408
    Greenwich 62,236 First Selectman $113,098
    Hamden 58,180 Mayor $87,550
    Hartford 124,397 Mayor $125,000
    Milford 54,802 Mayor $91,225
    Norwalk 84,437 Mayor $95,480
    Norwich 36,598 Mayor $45,000
    Seymour 16,144 First Selectman $75,000
    Wallingford 44,736 Mayor $73,140
    Waterbury 107,902 Mayor $106,709
    West Haven 52,923 Mayor $81,193
    STRATFORD 49,389 MAYOR $90,000

    I provide them to you. Please accept this comparison as you decide this issue. I hope this information is helpful.

    I believe that members of the Council who have the desire to run for the Mayor’s Office now or in the future should recuse themselves from this vote.

    The citizens of this community are burdened with high taxes and they need relief. I ask for you to return this $35,000.00 in the interest of tax relief. Please decide what best serves our taxpayers. Thank you for your time.

    Jonathan Best

  148. 148 sudds

    KUDOS Mr. Best!!!

    (I’ll be nice and just skip over the overly blantant political pandering of “I ask for you to return this $35,000.00 in the interest of tax relief”… you should leave that out next time… it’s just way TOO OBVIOUS)

    But other than that… I’m impressed… especially since ANYONE WITH HALF A BRAIN WOULD VOTE FOR MR. BEST!!!!

    Psst… you never told me whereto send my resume!!! At this point I’d like the no-show job at the train station please!!!

  149. 149 1george1

    Jon,

    If you part ways with certain supporters in the future, the possibility of me being
    willing to support you increases. Truthfully, I have other preferences.

    Of all of the candidates for Mayor, last time, I believe you were the best qualified.
    Truthfully, I have other preferences, than those who made the ballot.

    Your words were excellent at the Public Forum.

    I was 1 minute too late to sign up.
    Henrick did not want me speaking on the C.R.C. issue.
    NOT ONE Public Forum speaker mentioned the Town Charter, even in passing.
    A vote was taken on it last night.

  150. 150 jezebel282

    George,

    No one mentioned the Charter because it was a done deal last December. The RTC & DTC have no intention of giving up political appointments.

  151. 151 jezebel282

    “I believe that members of the Council who have the desire to run for the Mayor’s Office now or in the future should recuse themselves from this vote.”

    This sounds like a great idea.

    Don’t you agree, Mr. Forrester?

  152. 152 1george1

    I have a 7:00 pm meeting and it is 6:40.
    Gotta waddle.

    I have some stuff about the Charter that I shall post on George’s blog.

    Now they have made their move and turned their cards over for this
    hand and they are looking at a huge pot. What they don’t take into
    account, is the pot is soooo big, and soooo many years have passed,
    there are new and hungrier players to double cross the double
    crossers.

    How does the song go:

    Gypsies, Tramps, Lawyers, Liars, and Thieves…
    other people laid their money down ….

    Other peoples’ money
    Other peoples lives and children.

    Henrich had me soooo ticked last night

    Yet, it was NOT unintentional that I was a little late.
    They town council knew my positions
    They knew what I was trying to help prevent.
    They made their choices.
    They know that I know.

    As I was leaving JR & GAVIN were on the back platform
    JR mentioned I was waddling out of the elevator,
    JR and GAVIN took a little walk down the RAMP and across
    the PARKING LOT, increasing their distance.

    I chose not to call out.

    Their silence and their vote and their verbage speak volumes.

    Know what, I tried to help them from doing something they would
    be embarassed by and regret.

    If I am right about actions of JR & GAVIN, Kubic & Henrick, Proto
    and the C.R.C, mIRON/Burturla, they may get very wealthy or may
    go to jail. But in their twilight years, I believe they will wish they
    did what I believe to be the RIGHT THING.

  153. 153 1george1

    SCRANTON, Pa. – The mayor of financially distressed Scranton wants a $16 million loan from the public employees’ pension fund less than a month after he temporarily cut worker pay to the federal minimum wage.

    Mayor Chris Doherty is seeking the loan to help the city meet expenses, including payroll. It would be paid back at 8 percent interest over 10 years.

    The Scranton Composite Pension Board, which represents police, fire and civilian worker pension funds, tabled the mayor’s request. The pension funds are already considered to be severely underfunded, and the board’s financial consultants urged caution.

    City Controller and pension board member Roseann Novembrino told The Times-Tribune on Wednesday she’s against the plan , in which the pension plans would buy municipal bonds , even though it would help the city meet payroll.

    “The hardest thing for me to do is not to be able to sign the paychecks for people who have earned it,” she said.

    Doherty ignored a court order and cut the pay of nearly 400 workers to $7.25 an hour in paychecks earlier this month, saying it was all the cash-strapped city of more than 76,000 could afford. Full wages were restored in the next pay period.

    Unions representing firefighters, police and public-works employees have sued Doherty and the city, alleging violations of labor law and due-process rights, and are seeking to have him held in contempt of court.

    Doherty is locked in a dispute with Scranton’s city council over a financial recovery plan as it faces a $16.8 million budget deficit. He said the city can’t borrow money because he and council can’t agree on the plan.

    ————————–

    Bankruptcy decisions by San Bernardino and two other California cities only weeks apart may signal that municipal insolvency, while still a last resort, is losing its stigma.

    The City Council of San Bernardino, a community of 209,000 east of Los Angeles, joined Stockton and Mammoth Lakes in agreeing July 10 to seek court protection from its creditors, the first such filings since 2008.

    “Do I expect more? Yeah, but I don’t expect a tidal wave,” Dick Larkin, director of credit analysis for Herbert J. Sims & Co. in Iselin, New Jersey, said yesterday by telephone. “I am starting to wonder whether or not the stigma of bankruptcy in California is going to be taken more lightly now.”

    Cities and towns across the U.S. have been strained by soaring costs for labor including pensions and retiree health benefits, while sales- and property-tax revenue plunged after the longest recession since the 1930s. Stockton, a community of 292,000 east of San Francisco, on June 28 became the biggest U.S. city to enter bankruptcy.

    California is among at least 27 states that allow municipalities to file for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection, according to Meagan Dorsch, a spokeswoman for the National Conference of State Legislatures in Denver.

    “It’s still no honor to be a Chapter 9 debtor, but if it’s your only alternative, that’s what you do,” said Marc Levinson, the bankruptcy attorney for Stockton and for Vallejo, a city of 120,000 in the San Francisco Bay area that filed for court supervision in 2008. Chapter 9 of the U.S. bankruptcy code covers municipalities.

    Unaffordable Judgment
    The third recent bankruptcy was filed by Mammoth Lakes, a mountain resort of 8,200 that sought protection July 3, saying it can’t afford the $43 million it owes on a legal judgment, more than twice the size of its annual general-fund spending.

    A bankruptcy filing can increase the cost of borrowing or make it more difficult to access the capital markets in the future, Lisa Washburn, a managing director at Municipal Market Advisors in Concord, Massachusetts, said yesterday.

    “It’s worrisome to see them close together but I don’t expect that there will be a tsunami,” she said in a telephone interview. “We may see an uptick, but I think they’ll remain isolated instances.”

    John Moorlach, an Orange County supervisor who became treasurer after the county lost $1.7 billion on interest-rate bets and entered court protection in 1994, said he expected more cities to follow.

    “The dominoes are starting to fall,” Moorlach said yesterday in a telephone interview. “You’re going to get something every week, every month.”

    Mediation Option
    Last year, the California Legislature enacted a union- backed law to make it more difficult for cities to take that step. The law, which took effect this year, requires municipalities to pursue mediation with creditors or declare a fiscal emergency before seeking bankruptcy protection.

    San Bernardino is poised to become the first California city to bypass mediation with creditors under the law, City Attorney James Penman said in an interview.

    The City Council has scheduled a vote July 16 to declare a fiscal emergency, allowing San Bernardino to skip a 60-day neutral evaluation process in which creditors have a right to participate, Penman said late yesterday.

    “We don’t believe we have enough cash flow to get through the next 60 days,” he said. “We believe our situation is pretty secure” to qualify to bypass mediation.

    San Bernardino and its agencies have more than $220 million of debt, including $48.6 million of taxable pension-obligation bonds, according to financial statements.

    Rating Reduction
    Standard & Poor’s lowered its rating on the city’s lease- revenue bonds yesterday by 12 steps to CC, or junk, from BBB+, the third-lowest investment grade. The rating company said San Bernardino has depleted its cash, which could impair its ability to pay its bills. It put the credit on watch for future cuts.

    Insolvencies in Stockton, San Bernardino and Mammoth Lakes are three cities out of 482 in California, said Tom Dresslar, a spokesman for California Treasurer Bill Lockyer.

    “The notion that cities are chomping at the bit now to file for bankruptcy is misplaced,” Dresslar said yesterday in a telephone interview. “Most cities want to navigate through the fiscal straits they’re in without having to file for bankruptcy. If you take that route, the harm extends for years and years into the future.”

    The state is poised to borrow an estimated $10 billion next month to pay bills until the bulk of tax receipts are collected later in the year.

    “We expect heavy investor demand for those revenue- anticipation notes, and we fully anticipate getting a good deal for taxpayers,” Dresslar said. “We don’t see the recent events adversely affecting us at all.”

    James Spiotto, a partner who leads the bankruptcy group at Chapman & Cutler LLP in Chicago, said there have been 641 municipal bankruptcies since 1937. He said Stockton and Mammoth Lakes are the only U.S. cities to file this year.

    “Three does not make a trend,” said Spiotto, who helped Congress write amendments to Chapter 9. “What this really is is a wake-up call to everybody. Are people addressing their problems early enough?”

    Chapter 9 is a process and not a solution, he said.

    “The day after you file a Chapter 9, if there is a bad economy, there’s still a bad economy,” Spiotto said. “If you have problems with your workers, you still have them.”

    To contact the reporter on this story: Alison Vekshin in San Francisco at avekshin@bloomberg.net

    To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Merelman at smerelman@bloomberg.net


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