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 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.