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Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Luckily I have unlimited minutes on my cell phone because it seems to be ringing constantly. Probably the number one subject now is regarding the replacement of outgoing Councilmembers. One is leaving on a high note as he ascends to the State Legislature, the other on a low note after a corruption scandal and her arrest toppled her 17 year political career. Thank you Matt for your service to Hartford and continued success at the Capitol.

What they both have in common is the rush by Council President rJo Winch to fill those seats. Although it took weeks to fill the Council seat vacated by Mayor Segarra's rise to the Mayor's office, the rush to fill Matt Ritter's seat before the body is even cold (sorry Matt)is highly questionable. The theory being laid out earlier in the week was that Winch had the five votes on the Council to slide her pick in under the "political" radar without any problem. It appears that Winch's pic is her close friend, Sean Arena.

Winch apparently isn't concerned with information that came out earlier this year regarding Arena's registering his vehicles in New Canaan to avoid Hartford's high taxes and mill rate. To read that entry, click here

The votes seemed to be in place for Arena and Winch earlier in the week, but that was also thrown upside down after the announced "retirement" of the corrupt Councilwoman mentioned above, Veronica Airey-Wilson. It seems that Airey-Wilson is Winch's fifth vote for Arena.

Now here is where the problem arises. According to Hartford's City Charter a vacany can only be filled AFTER it occurs, and then it must be done within 60 days. Any attempt to fill Ritter's vacancy before he resigns January 3, 2011 would be a violation of Hartford's Charter. The specifics can be found in Hartford's Charter, Chapter 3,section 4, subsection C, subsection 2. It clearly states that a Council vacancy "shall be filled by a majority vote of the Council within sixty (60) days following the vacancy.

Now, Airey-Wilson's resignation takes effect on December 31, 2010, which is 3 days BEFORE Ritter's resignation. Hence, Airey-Wilson can not legally vote for Ritter's replacement and Winch's fifth vote for Arena disappears into thin air, like a check written for countertops. Not that Airey-Wislon or some others on the Council pay much attention to laws if past practice is any indication. This most likely will put into jeopardy the plans to replace Airey-Wilson with her nephew Corey Brinson, but more on that in another posting.

Although the current Council President may consider herself a political power broker after she squashed her competition for the Council President's vote by getting Aponte to flip and support her, she may want to listen to her constituents. Just as a reminder, Winch was the low vote getter last go round for Council elections by almost 1000 votes to the next closest Democrat. She recently lost her bid to unseat the incumbent State Representative Doug McCrory in her home district by close to a 4 to 1 margin.

That might seem to indicate that her support in her own home district is tenuous at best, some might say close to non-existent, and how that lack of support translates to citywide votes would not seem to be strong. People are sick of the back room deals being shoved down our throats. Has anyone heard of Winch calling for any resumes or any consideration of a pool of qualified candidates?

This backroom politics is what has killed our city and it needs to change. If Winch continues down this path though it should prove beneficial next fall when the voters will hold Winch and others accountable for their acts.....hopefully. Anyone who under estimates the voter discontent that just swept this country, is either blind or most definitely doing it at their own peril.

Is another shellacing in the works, Hartford style?


The Candy Store said...

The likely necessity one needs to be on the Council is to be a crook,corrupt,an enabler or an incompetant.I wouldnt let my wallet near any of the Council,with the exception of Dr Deutsch.The 3 leading name for Ritter's seat are terrible and so are the new floated names...all are bad....ditto the republican names.Hartford is getting the representation that it deserves.

Anonymous said...

rJo doesn't have 4 votes for Sean Arena or for Corey Brinson. Getting beaten in your own district so badly has consequences.

As for Dr. Deutsch, he is honest, no doubt, but you'd be crazy to leave your wallet anywhere near him because any $$ in there will be spent and any credit cards will be maxed out on more wasteful spending.

Anonymous said...

Whoever was the next highest Republican vote getter in the last election should be appointed to Veronica Airey-Wilson' seat.

Turkey Leg said...

I think they should have an emergency election. Get the 300-400 voters who come out for the council elections and let them decide. Or maybe we can check to see if there is someone out of prison on work release that would do it.

George said...

The Hartford city council as a body is corrupt. There should be a special election like in other cities (ie. Boston, Detroit, etc.)

Amend the charter to let the voters decide.

Then in November 2011, vote them all out.

Anonymous said...

George, you're a dummy. You talk like a dummy and you think like a dummy.

A special election for the whole body? Think about it for a second. How is the whole body corrupt?

The only thing that will happen once you get your special election is that you will have 9 more people to blame for your dumbness. Do us all a favor and move to Boston or Detroit.

The Town Crier said...

Dear Anonymous 10:44PM

George isnt far wrong...most on the Council are corrupt and some stuff of Mayor Segarra will be in the newspaper very soon.

peter brush said...

There should be a special election like in other cities (ie. Boston, Detroit, etc.)
Don't know if George is right that we ought to have a special election, but it is noteworthy that our mechanism for replacing council differs from Beantown's. I would also express discomfort with the Hartford mechanism on general democratic grounds, but of course, if democracy were the priority we'd not have any non-Dems servicing the public. It is a weird situation where the Dem council gets to approve a Republican replacement for our departing RINO.pb
A day after the City Council voted to oust Chuck Turner from office because of his bribery conviction, a number of names have surfaced as potential candidates to replace the long-serving city councilor from Roxbury...
A special election to replace Turner must be held within 120 days of the councilor’s departure from office. Turner’s expulsion takes effect today.

George said...


I've been to both Boston and Detroit, and those city governments are better run than Hartford's.

I will continue to fight for change in this area, so I'm not going anywhere.

When I said that there should be a special election, I meant it in terms of replacing an individual council member that leaves or resigns.

Not a special election for the entire body, idiot.


Peter Brush:

I noticed the council up in Boston seems to have enough integrity to come together and vote Chuck Turner out because of his bribery conviction.

Something you will never ever see in Hartford government.

peter brush said...

I've been to both Boston and Detroit, and those city governments are better run than Hartford's.
Don't know about Detroit, but apparently the council critters in Beantown are paid almost $90,000. But, my opinion is unchanged; Boston a much nicer city than either Htfd. or Detroit, and it has virtually nothing to do with governance. But, although the Boston council expulsion was the first ever it shows some moxie our council lacks. Heck, I'd have been grateful for a simple official acknowledgment that Veronica had been a bad girl.

Anonymous said...

What difference does it make to Winch that Arena didn't pay taxes in Hartford. She had her vehicle registered in Texas when she was running for Council in 2003. It has a CT plate now but who knows what City it is registeed in? New Canaan or Texas what difference does it make if you are doing the wrong thing.