Month: June 2016

Ganim On Municipal Layoffs

The following is a statement by Mary Joe Ganim regarding intending municipal employee layoffs in the city of Bridgeport.

“As we end fiscal year 2016 and begin a new fiscal year, my administration has been unable to come to an accommodation with the various city employee labor unions that would get us to a figure of $4,000,000 in savings that is required in order to balance the budget for the coming fiscal year.  Our administration has been working very hard for months in cooperation with labor unions trying to close the budget gap through some modest concessions such as wage freezes and furlough days. These are actions that appointed officials in my ministration have already taken.

We have been as flexible as we can be, and we have negotiated in good faith.  As it was last time I was mayor, my current administration is committed to good working relations with all bargaining units in the municipal employee labor force.

We know these are tough times, and we know that labor unions have given concessions in recent years. We know that it is a significant ask to request another $4,000,000 in savings, and we would not do so if balancing the budget did not depend on it.

As we have been very consistently telling the labor unions, the inability to reach a consensus on labor cost savings for the coming fiscal year now requires us to implement a new round of layoffs.  A list of municipal employees to be laid off is currently being prepared and will be released sometime tomorrow.

This is a very unfortunate result, and not the outcome I wanted to see as chief executive of our city. My administration has already laid off approximately 100 employees since taking over last December. The last thing we want to do is to separate more employees from their jobs. But in fairness to the taxpayers of Bridgeport, we must do what we can to balance the budget. If that means doing the work of the people of Bridgeport with less employees, then that we are prepared to take this difficult step.”

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Ziak Virus Funding

U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) andU.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) will join Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling, State Senator Bob Duff, and Dr. Majid Sadigh, Director of the Global Health Program at Western Connecticut Health Network, at Norwalk Hospital to demand the Senate immediately pass the $1.1 billion bipartisan compromise to combat the Zika outbreak. According to Senator Murphy’s press release “This week, Senate Republicans abandoned a bipartisan compromise that had previously passed the Senate and instead took up a divisive bill  that needlessly and recklessly cut funding for Planned Parenthood and the Affordable Care Act. Murphy and Blumenthal will outline the specific steps they’re taking to secure emergency funding, help Connecticut companies – like Protein Sciences in Meriden and CargoGen Corp. in Farmington – develop Zika vaccines and, in light of the virus’ impact on pregnant women, prioritize women’s access to reproductive health care”.

 

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Bridgeport Launches Summer Youth Initiative

#BRIDGEPORT, CT – Mayor Joe Ganim today joined The Department of Youth Services, local business and youth participants to launch The Summer Youth Initiative and The Youth Champions Program (Youth Empowerment through Summer Employment). The summer initiatives were designed to serve youth and young adults between the ages of 14 and 21 this summer with quality programs, activities and/or services. The Summer Youth Initiative gives local organizations or individuals access to a total of $250,000 in funding to create organized youth programs, like that of The Youth Champions.

 

“The launch of these programs is terrific news for the young adults in the community of Bridgeport,” said Mayor Ganim.  “I am so thankful for the support of the business community in aiding our efforts to provide a safe and enriching outlet for our young people.  Through these funds we will employ more than one hundred Bridgeport young people between the ages of 14-21.  We will also be able to fund other meaningful activities for hundreds of other young people in the summer months.”

 

The Mayor’s Youth Empowerment through Summer Employment Initiative or Youth Champions was designed to give youth employment opportunities to learn a skill and gain real work experience. The program is expected to employ approximately 100 students with the help from companies and organizations in the area. The youth were divided by their interest to fill the variety of positions available. Participating businesses and organizations include:  The Audubon Society, Bank of America, United Illuminating, The Mayor’s Conservation Corp, Excel Bridgeport, Emera Energy, City of Bridgeport Public Facilities, and PosiGen.

 

Dan McAtee, President of PosiGen said, “PosiGen is honored to support the Conservation Corps for a third summer.  We’re proud to be providing jobs to young people that enable them to help sustain the very neighborhoods where they will one day own homes. Solar is the way of the future, just as these young people are our future, so we feel this partnership is a perfect fit. With the help of the Conservation Corps, PosiGen will be able to reach even more Bridgeport homeowners, to let them know that affordable solar and energy efficiency is available to all homeowners.”

 

“Initiatives like the City’s Junior Council Program connect Bridgeport’s youth to tremendous opportunities to develop their workforce skills, foster their interest in civic engagement, and ultimately become productive members of our community,” said Bill Tommins, Southern Connecticut Market President, Bank of America. “With a productive workforce in place, our community can grow sustainably and create a healthy economy, which is why Bank of America partners with organizations that are driving local solutions.”

 

The Summer Youth Initiative opens the doors for similar establishments or individuals to receive funding to create their own summer activities for the youth. The Bridgeport city council recently approved a budget of $250,000 to aid in the success of these programs with an additional $10,000 donated by United Illuminating. Applications to gain access to the funding will be evaluated and processed by the Youth Services Division of the City of Bridgeport.

(City of Bridgeport press release)

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Tonight’s Car Fire

10:25pm–#cttraffic–#Milford Connecticut– Tonight’s car fire is on I-95 southbound at the rest area at exit 41.  In the picture it is directly behind the bright light which is either a light or the camera is overexposed or both.  Firefighters report on scanner transmissions that it is fully engulfed involving the fuel so foam has been ordered.

 

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