The draft bill was first posted here last night, here is the final bill which is now ready to move forward. The bills passage may be a tough fight according to several Legislative sources though.
One source referred to the bill as "putting the fox in charge of the hen house", referring to the Commissions proposed makeup. I have to agree. Can we really count on at least four Hartford politicians to correct the problems created by Hartford politicians. I understand that for the most part it is a new freshman class of politicians.
As an example though, do you think Council members will really make the call to cut their own assistants? $50,000 each times 9 , plus benefits is a large amount of money. This is one cost we can no longer afford. It is a small amount in the grand scheme of things, but it will set the tone that everyone is doing their part in the "shared sacrifice".
Do you think the Council would move to end their own pensions or medical coverage? It is a part time job, the Hartford City Council is one of the few similar bodies in the State of Connecticut that actually get paychecks. I guess we could see who really wants to be there if we eliminated the pay for Council people. Symbolic , but necessary, cuts are a necessity for the part time Council if we are going to see any mutual trust between the Union's and the Commission and we ask them to be part of the tough decisions.
The cuts need to be felt all the way from the top to the bottom. Can we really afford a videographer in the Mayor's Office? Can we really afford pensions for Council people after 5 years of service. Name me one other part time job that offers a pension after 5 years.
I could go on more about this, but if we are talking about cutting Union jobs to the bone, it has to also be fair and done across the board. I think we really need fresh unbiased eyes looking at the full picture, ready to make tough decisions and no one should be thinking about repercussions for the next election. That is what got us here in the first place.