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Tuesday, January 29, 2013


I get a lot of documents and e-mails forwarded to me on a regular basis.  The document posted below landed in my in box this past weekend, as well as a few people calling me to inform me that it existed and was making the rounds.

Once I opened it and read it I thought someone really had a sense of humor. It was written in the name of City Councilwoman Cynthia Jennings, and among other things, it was advocating for a salary increase for all Council members to $90,000 per year as well as the establishment of a "slush fund" for each Councilperson of $15,000 so that they could continue to attend the cocktail parties and events that were part of their functions as Council people.

Once I verified that the document was authentic and not a joke, I tried to figure out how anyone could make such a proposal. The priorities of the Council always seem to stun me. Do they understand the financial situation Hartford is in and how much worse it is going to be for the upcoming fiscal year. I am already hearing grumblings of layoffs of police officers, and the Council thinks a raise is in order? Let me correct that, one councilperson thinks increasing their salary over 5 times what they make now is appropriate.

Does Councilwoman Jennings understand that unemployment in Hartford is almost 20percent and that those Hartford residents that actually are lucky enough to have a job may  have to work several years to make $90,000.

The paragraph below is taken word for word from the document: This is why Hartford is a financial mess

The salaries of Council members must be raised to be comparable to the Mayor, and City Department Heads.  The Charter must be changed so that Council members can be respected by staff, department heads, the Mayor and the residents of this city relative to salaries being paid for work being done. Council members should receive a minimum annual payment of $90,000.00 and a budget of $15,000 each for annual expenses, including payment of tickets to events that council members must attend in order to do the business of the city.  This includes parking, training or educational workshops relative to the business of the city, retreats and conferences.  It can be stipulated that no salary increases would take place while we are in office, however, Council salaries must be increased.

The  Council is not comparable to the Mayor and they never were intended to be. That is why there is one Mayor and 9 Council people. Maybe if they used the authority they were given under the Charter, as a body they would be comparable to the Mayor, but as individuals...definitely not.
 This is why Hartford is a financial mess, we have no business people on the Council and there is not one word in the proposal as to how the salaries and accompanying slush funds would be funded. And the suggestion that salaries equate to "respect" from staff is ludicrous. I respect plenty of people that work daily to make Hartford a better place without making anything off the taxpayers. Granted, they are few and far between and we have plenty of people making a great living off Hartford's taxpayers and returning very little in return. I don't respect anyone just because of their salary.

I don't think there will be any support for the Councilwoman's proposals, at least not by anyone that hopes to get re-elected.

And Councilwoman, you earn respect, you can't buy it with the size of your check stub.

You have done some good things , but this erases an awful lot of that. If anyone asks, tell them it was supposed to be an April Fool's joke, that might help.



Share the wealth said...


This is a recommendation from the "Working Faimilies Party " Council member, I am sure it doesn't surprise you

Anonymous said...

Ms Jenning's proposals are totally wrong and wont have mcuh,if any,support.

Billy said...

I'm absolutely flabbergasted with this request. This city never ceases to amaze me with it's absurdity.

Anonymous said...

So where will the money come from? Deutch made a stink about Jared's raise that preceded layoffs this last year so how will he protect jobs after this? Take the money from youth? Council gave up their pocket last year earning some good will with the staff and voters but that seems to have been an act! if they even consider this they are 10 times worse than Eddie ever was! This is just plain disgusting and she should be ashamed!