Word is that Hartford's Superintendent of School's Christina Kishimoto might have a reading problem of her own. It seems that Kishimoto apparently failed to read the "No Parking " sign in front of her Kenyon Street home warning about towing for street sweeping. Kishimoto's car was towed by an Officer from the Hartford Police Traffic Division, who regularly enforce and tow vehicles to facilitate street sweeping in Hartford's neighborhoods.
Spurces have told me the vehicle was reclaimed by Kishimoto after she paid the appropriate fees
I have been getting calls all week regarding the LSNI (Livable Sustainable Neighborhood Initiative) program that was created by Mayor Segarra and required the hiring of four special assistants to Chief Operating Officer David Panagore. That program now appears to be in free fall as two of the special Assistants to Panagore now have resigned and as Jenna Carlesso at the Courant reports, none of the work done on the property has been billed or liens placed on the properties to secure the City's financial interest. Click here to read Jenna's story
The entire story is a classic case of finger pointing, but at the very least it points out the incompetence of this Administration. I have to ask, when is someone going to step up and say enough is enough. One name keeps showing up front and center in every embarrassment for the Segarra Administration.... David Panagore.
Is the Council going to ever show enough backbone to do what Segarra is obviously incapable of, and that is to ask the tough questions and hold Panagore accountable for his actions. The list is endless of the discredit he has brought to Mayor Segarra and unfortunately us as a City.
The $400,000 to the Market at Hartford 21, the $50.000 Police Chief search, the whole Dan Nolan mess, and now the Hartford Police Credit Union debacle that seems to be headed to another lawsuit because of Panagore's actions. Not to mention the adversarial relationship with our friends at the Capitol created by our caped crusader in the waning days of the Legislative session..
I can go on and on, but let me be the first to go on the record and say David Panagore needs to go and take his travelling circus show of incompetence with him.
Whenever I go to facebook I find that Sean Arena has posted another picture of an innocent animal that needs help. Sean routinely posts the pictures of pets that are facing death at the Hartford Dog Pound. I'm not sure how anyone could abandon or dump off the dog above, but there are plenty of terriffic pets available for adoption at the Hartford pound.If you would like to know more or possibly adopt a friend, check out "Hartford Animal Shelter" on Facebook.com
If you have any doubt's about adopting a shelter dog, be sure to read the comments on the facebook page and you will be hooked
It has been a while since I ahve posted anything about Dan Nolan. Dan continues to serve our country in Afghanistan .As the Irish Fest begins this weekend at the Irish Home in Glastonbury this is an event Dan would surely be attending if he was here. Continue to keep Dan in your thoughts and prayers until he returns home later this summer.
Council President Shawn T. Wooden announced that, today, Mayor Segarra has
submitted a resolution to the Council for the appointment of James C. Rovella as
Chief of the Hartford Police Department. Accordingly, in an effort to expedite
the process, the Council will convene a special meeting on Monday, July
30th at 5:30 P.M. to receive the resolution and have a confirmation
hearing immediately thereafter at 6:00 P.M.
of a police chief is extraordinarily important to the future of the City of
Hartford. Because Chief Rovella was not subject to the process that other
candidates faced, a thorough vetting by the Council is crucial. Hartford
residents want to feel safer in our city. And, given the length of time that we
have been without a permanent police chief, the Council should act with urgency
in considering this appointment. I look forward to hearing Chief Rovella’s
vision for public safety in our city. I also look forward to giving the
community an opportunity to ask questions of Chief Rovella,” said
hearing will consist of four components: opening remarks from Mayor Segarra,
remarks from Chief Rovella, questions from the public, and questions from the
Council. Members of the public may also participate in the confirmation process
by submitting questions or comments to HartfordChiefQuestions@gmail.com or calling
K. Anderson, Chairman of the Quality of Life, Public Safety, and Housing
Committee, added, “Public engagement is incredibly important in all aspects of
public safety and this is no exception. Our city has a crime epidemic, and it is
imperative that the next police chief understands the concerns of Hartford
residents. That is why it is so important that we give both the public and Chief
Rovella the opportunity to have that discussion.”
The City Charter
gives the Council 60 days from July 30, 2012 to take action on the appointment
of Chief Rovella.
Hopefully the weather will hold out for today;s ice cream social at the Mark Twain House on Farmington Avenue, the details are below:
Our Annual Ice Cream Social
Thursday, July 26, 5:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m.
Come to The Mark Twain House & Museum to enjoy lawn games, live music, hot dogs, discounted tours -- and, of course, a refreshing cup of ice cream donated by the UConn Dairy Bar, Shady Glenn, and Royal Ice Cream.
This is the fourth year for the Social, which always draws a good crowd. (After the social, at 7:00 p.m., there will be a preview screening of the documentary "Linotype: The Film." See above.)
The Ice Cream Social this year benefits from a special grant for free programs from The First Niagara Bank Foundation.
The event includes:
-- Discounted tours of the first floor of the historic Mark Twain House, available for $5.00 from 5:00 p.m. until 7:15 p.m. All the exhibits in the Museum Center, including the featured exhibit "Race, Rage, and Redemption," will also be free.
-- The renowned Phil Rosenthal Duo will present its lively program of traditional and original folk, bluegrass and country music on the patio, featuring two-part harmony vocals and toe-tapping instrumental work.
-- Woody's Hot Dog Cart will have its famed hot dogs available for purchase.
-- Croquet and other lawn games will be tearing up the Great Lawn for the enjoyment of all ages.
--- Workshops on lantern making with Anne Cubberly. Lanterns made from plastic bottles will be featured in Night Fall, a celebration in Elizabeth Park on Oct. 13.
Free event; special $5.00 tours of the main floor of the Mark Twain House
When it rains it pours, many of you have asked why blog posts have slowed down so I hope you are getting your fill today.
But anyways, an e-mail was sent out to all of the members of the Hartford Redevelopment Authority today advising them that "Please be advised that the August HRA meeting has been
cancelled due to the lack of actionable items. "The e-mail was sent by Mayra Ghaffar, the
Administrative Assistantin the Economic Development Division of the Department of Development Services
A lack of actionable items,? We just hired a new economic development Director and we have an office full of staff in the redevelopment Department and several of them have recently been given bonuses. How can there be nothing actionable if people are actually doing their jobs?
What about the project at Albany Avenue and Woodland Street that was supposed to be voted on months ago , after the neighborhood made it clear what they wanted there. Word is that there may be a behind the scenes deal in the offing to benefit another Hartford politico. That property was already part of a Grand Jury corruption investigation, should we try for twice?
Someone, ,hopefully, someone on the Council needs to start asking questions as to why there is nothing "actionable" in a City that is starving for Economic Development. Maybe the paychecks for staff that aren't able create anything "actionable" should be looked at.
And on the topic of development, I am being told that the COO"s Anti Blight Initiative is on life support as the staff continue to jump from the sinking ship. Anyone that could provide more insight on this feel free to call me with info.
This is just one of those things that makes me shake my head in disbelief and wonder if we need to start testing the air and water for hallucinogenics at Hartford City Hall.
During the Perez years, a new Public Safety Complex for Hartford was planned and construction began. The Hartford Police Federal Ctredit Union currently occupies space in the Police building at Jennings Road in Hartford. The normal progression would seem to be that accommodations would be made to move the Credit Union to the new Public Safety Complex. In a corrupt administration things don't always go as expected and many times deals are cut behind the scenes.
Since Perez's Administration was clearly corrupt, common sense doesn't apply and the HPD Credit Union was cut out of the new complex and the location was given to the Hartford Municipal Employees Credit Union instead.
Sources have told me that the HPD Credit Union "was done dirty" and the City wanted to make it up to them and began the process of selling them an abandoned property directly across the street from the new complex. Although the property has not been officially closed on yet, one source told me that the City had accepted their bid of approximately $170.000 for the City owned property months ago. Apparently the closing has been postponed on at least three different occasions. The first time , according to sources the City provided an inaccurate plot plan which needed to be corrected with accurate dimensions.
Ok, so now here comes the crazy part. Another closing has been scheduled for this week and on the eve of the closing the City is trying to put it off again apparently. The reason is that COO David Panagore has , according to sources, notified the HPD Credit Union that Federal money has been found to actually move the building from its current location to the corner of Main Street and Albany Avenue.
This is a property that would return to the Grand List and begin producing much needed tax revenue once the sale is completed. One person familiar with the sale asked is this was the way the city handles Economic Development and why would anyone consider moving a business here if the process is so cumbersome
That corner was slated to be the location of a new McDonald's Restaurant recently until the project was killed by the city. More craziness that City Hall would kill any development project at this time, but again, it has to be the air quality clogging the brains at City Hall.
Hopefully if the building is moved, since it is a historic property, the vendor will be different than the one used to preserve the historic facade of the new Complex. That was done wrong and the entire facade eventually collapsed. The HPD Credit Union might just end up as a pile of bricks on High Street.
A call to the Mayor's Chief of Staff for comment has not been returned as of this time.
In accordance with Hartford's Charter, Hartford's City Treasurer has appointed his Deputy Treasurer.
Clouds pick is raising some eyebrows in political circles. His choice is Carmen Sirerra who was terminated from her job in the Office of the State Comptroller after she accused former Comptroller, now Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman of "making Puerto Rican jokes" according to media reports from 1999.
This brush up occurred after Sierra was not endorsed in her run for City Treasurer at the time, the office was eventually won by Kathleen Palm who served as Hartford's Treasurer until her retirement last year. At the time media accounts reported that "Wyman may be separating herself from someone she considers disloyal"
At least one politico was not happy with that decision at the time, current endorsed Democratic Registrar of Voters candidate Ramon Arroyo had promised Wyman that he would "remember the issue when she came up for re-election. A promise that apparently never came true since Wyman was successfully re-elected and went on to run as Lieutenant Governor with Connecticut's current Governor Dannel Malloy.
Arroyo's own candidacy for Registrar of Voters is not without controversy as he continues to refuse to answer questions posed from residents about his 1991 arrest for soliciting a prostitute.
Sierra's comments about Wyman were made during her appearance on a local public access program when a caller to the show made an anti-Semitic remark and referred to "blood sucking Jew's". Sierra apparently did not challenge the remark, but she was challenged by the late John O'Connell when he called in and questioned her lack of a response to the anti-Semitic remarks, Candidate Sierra did not address the issue but instead of denouncing the slur, Sierra described it as a ``joke'' and added that Wyman, who is Jewish, makes Puerto Rican jokes..
Cloud himself , during an interview for his endorsement for Treasurer had been asked by a 6th District Democratic Town Committee member Alex Rodriguez if he (Cloud)had any plans of naming Sierra as his Deputy and Cloud apparently answered "Absolutely not". When I spoke to Treasurer Cloud this morning, he contends that Sierra was the most qualified candidate he had available.
Monday night I was invited to a "Meet and Greet" for the Asylum Hill Neighborhood Association at the Harriet Beecher Stowe House at 77 Forest Street. I am almost embarrassed to admit I had never visited this Hartford landmark before. The main house was already closed for the day, but the Visitor Center was open and was impressive with the displays and the information that was displayed there.
One display claims that Abraham Lincoln at one point told Harriet Beecher Stowe that her book "Uncle Tom's Cabin" may have been responsible for the start of the Civil War. One program that is running through September 3, 2012 is called "Images of Separation" and uses objects of intolerance to teach tolerance and promote social justice.
We sometimes focus on the negative but don't realize all the positives also. A trip to the Harriet Beecher Stowe house might just be the best $3.00 you spend this summer. Over 30,000 people visited the Center last year with roughly 10% being "international" visitors.
While you are at it don't forget many of our other Hartford gems like the Mark Twain Home just next door, the gardens at Elizabeth Park, the Connecticut State Capitol, The Connecticut Science Center, Bushnell Park or even one of the many events happening at Hartford's Riverfront throughout the summer. Feel free to post any other of Hartford's gems that are open to explore this summer
I think everyday our leadership vacuum becomes more obvious as our so called leaders go into reactionary mode every time there is a crisis.The vision we would hope to expect just doesn't seem to be a trait of most of our elected officials.
After a recent violent weekend , Mayor Segarra reacted by a media stunt walking "On the Beat " with Hartford's Police Chief James Rovella. I think it would be a fair question to ask Segarra how many times did he walk Hartford's violent neighborhoods prior to that night and how many times has he been back since that night. I think most of us already know the answer to that question. Leadership requires vision... where are we going and how are we going to get there.
Instead , unfortunately far too often we realize we have arrived, now what are we going to do?
If not for the severity and sadness of the Aurora shootings, it would almost be comical for the politico reactions..
Former Governor John Rowland was on his radio show last Friday talking about an executive order he issued after the fatal shootings at Connecticut's lottery Headquarters several years ago. Rowland spoke of how the next day he immediately issued an executive order banning any state employees, except law enforcement officials, from bringing guns to work
I have to ask myself what goes through the mind set of someone planning a mass murder spree. Hopefully I will never know , but I know one thing for sure, an executive order from the Governor or anyone else probably would not enter into my decision . "OHH, I can't walk in and execute my co workers today because the Governor has banned me from bringing my deadly weapons into the workplace". Purely reactionary and definitely not preventative
How many of Hartford's gun toting thugs do you think have actually obtained letters of reference to properly obtain their pistol permits so that they can carry them on the streets of our City? I know one thing though, they definitely have not obtained the firearms instructions required, otherwise their accuracy might be much more deadly.
Going back to the vision thing, I have to wonder after the Hartford Distributors shootings of a couple summers ago, what steps have been taken to prevent another such event. Maybe an executive order banning co-workers from shooting each other?
Maybe we should look at the real problem, rather than reacting by the seat of the pants. What training has taken place with unions and employers to be able to recognize the first sign of potential workplace violence or improper behavior? Have the labor unions conducted any kind of training to identify the next potential Omar Thornton or is it just being left to chance for the next time?
And finally to get to my point and back to vision. Hartford is an extremely violent city, but what are the root causes and how do we attack the problem? The immediate solution might be hiring more police officers , but what about long term? How are we losing the moral compass of our young people who think it is acceptable to put a couple slugs into someones brain to settle a dispute?
Long term one of the solutions seems to be a better societal interaction with our youth and intervention where our parents and schools might be failing them. It is no secret that a strong family structure, critical to raising any child , is lacking in many of Hartford's homes. No father figure, mother's or fathers that are not present or incarcerated all lead to a lack of direction on the part of our young people.
Many grandparents are trying to take up the slack and raise their grandchildren when the parents aren't, but I know some days I don't have the energy to deal with my dog, never mind the responsibility to raise a child and I would assume the same is true for the energy level of many grandparents.
Some of you reading this are probably saying to yourselves that he isn't singing the praises of Chief Rovella once yet, so here goes ,the whole reason for this posting is "vision"
I constantly talk about how impressed I am with the "vision" of Chief Rovella and his passion for Hartford. One area of his vision that seems to outweigh many of the others is his interest in the PAL program, the Police Athletic League. Rovella seems to be paying close attention to the very successful PAL program run by the City of Waterbury
The City of Waterbury has an extremely successful PAL program which serves over 3400 youth in the City, From their website The Police Activity League of Waterbury, Inc. (PAL) provides the youth of the Greater Waterbury area with positive guidance during their crucial childhood years. It has been proven that a strong support system, such as PAL, has a direct relationship with lowering crime rates, and has a powerful impact on a child's future.
Waterbury is comparable to the size of Hartford , give or take 10,000 residents, yet their most recent homicide numbers for 2008 were a total of five murders compared to Hartford's 32. I can't say it is all because of PAL, but clearly something is working right with Waterbury's youth when it comes to violence.
Rovella's plans for PAL include a greatly expanded use of the Quirk Middle school and its facilities, which would seem to be a no-brainer. A partnership between the Board of Education and the police Department to reduce youth violence in a very violent City is something that would most likely gain national attention if operated properly.
It would seem that if Mayor Segarra shares in the vision and actually appoints the majority of the Board of Education members, there should be no impediments to a plan that could potentially save the lives of Hartford youth from senseless violence. It's called leadership and vision.
Let's stop reacting and start showing some vision.
On Tuesday, July 10th, Mayor Segarra named James Rovella as his pick as the permanent replacement for the position of Chief of the Hartford Police Department. The process was bizarre., it was a waste of $50,000 and produced less than stellar results. The Corporation Counsel should be attempting to recover our $50,000 dollars from an incompetent search firm.
Now as i speak to Council members asking where they stand on Rovella's approval by the Council, they are all non-committal and keep mentioning "the process". I don't want to dwell on "the process" because I am a strong believer in Chief Rovella and his vision and I feel that in spite of "the process" we now have the best choice in place to move HPD forward..
If the Council has an issue with "the process" is that any reason not to approve Rovella. Rovella was just a pawn in a nonsensical game of Hartford government orchestrated through the Mayor's Chief Operating Officer. If the Council really wants to get answers as to "the process"they won't come from Rovella, he didn't design nor implement "the process"
Under the City Charter, the Council has it within their power to get answers to any questions they may have as to "the process" by conducting hearings and put David panagore in the hot seat and have him answer the questions they may have , on the record for everyone to hear. If the Council has a shortage of questions I might suggest a few.
Why was a no bid contract given out for $50,0000 to conduct the search? What was Mr' Panagores prior relationship with Robert Wasserman and why was the decision made to go with his firm? What business relationship existed between Panagore and Wasserman prior to the contract being issued?
I know the Council has been deluged with calls and comments from taxpayers upset with the process, Council President Shawn Woode, stated at the recent meeting of the Maple Avenue NRZ that he was "very, very, very, very disappointed by the process". Ok. Mr Wooden, now do what you are empowered to do, and get to the truth without casting any more of a cloud over the appointment of Chief Rovella
I'l start this one off with a disclaimer: I am supporting Chris Murphy for US Senate, for whatever that might mean to anyone. My decision has become even stronger in the last week for one major reason, I think being able to tell the truth and recognize the truth is a quality I want in my next US Senator.
Susan Bysiewicz doesn't seem to possess those qualities. Last week after launching a television ad, Bysiewicz came under fire almost immediately for inaccuracies and less than truthful information put in the ad about Chris Murphy. I would hope that Bysiewicz and her staff would have done better research and verified the facts they were putting out, but she didn't.
The sad part is that even after the errors were pointed out and actually acknowledged by her campaign, she continues to run the ad on television. Her campaign has even acknowledged the less than truthful information. The 30-second political ad accuses Murphy of accepting "more hedge fund money than
any other Democrat in Congress," an assertion that Bysiewicz and her campaign
staff now acknowledge is not true. "The ad is incorrect — he's No. 4 in terms
of hedge; he's not No. 1," she told reporters Sunday afternoon.
Bysiewicz's comment that "the ad is incorrect" should be enough in and of itself to pull the ad, but I guess correct and accurate information only matters when it is her Christmas Card list.
word is that more useless positions continue to be eliminated at Hartford City Hall. Evelyn Mantilla, former Perez-ite has been shown the door and is no longer employed by the taxpayers of Hartford. It has not been clear for several years what her position actually has been since Perez took her off his office payroll and buried her in several departments of city government.
Mantilla, the former state representative for the 4th assembly district had stepped aside to clear the way for another Perez-ite, Kelvin Roldan to get elected to Mantilla's seat. Mantilla then landed a lucrative consulting contract with Perez and eventually a paid staff position before she was hidden away in the Health Department at a $70.000.00 a year plus salary and then she was eventually moved to MHIS, the city's IT Department.
Perez's former "Energy Czar" Donald Blalock was also shown the door the same time as Mantilla.
Word also is that one of the assistants to Chief Operating Officer David Panagore has quit her newly created post after she refused to move into Hartford , as was required within 6 months of her hiring.
Word also is that other Department heads are in free fall mode and every effort is being made to avoid an exodus from City Hall, more on that to come.
After getting fed up with the lack of openness in Hartford City Hall, I decided to begin a program on Hartford Public Access Television called "WE THE PEOPLE". Through tips received we have been able to expose numerous issues that the Perez Administration would prefer to keep quiet.
Any information received is kept in strict confidence, feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com or call me at 860-883-2297 with any information.