724 Political News
Keep it right here for
you latest Team 724 news and events.
Political Director Chuck Flynn will posting vital info to the campaign
and Team 724's next move..
Connecticut finally approved a $41 billion two year budget after a record
setting 118 days late. No raise in income or sales tax and New London
came away with minimal loss in state funding. This essentially veto proof
budget now rests with the governor to dot the 'I's, cross the 'T's and
move on. While our elected officials in Hartford preen their feathers
while congratulate each other on finally approving a budget they enacted
unnecessary pain on their constituents and voters should remember these
days when they face re-election in November 2018.
a budget finally in place and no gubernatorial candidates with statewide
name recognition our money is on Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman to enter the
race. Wyman has been described as certainly partisan when she has to be
but she's instinctively fair with incredible inner strength and self deprecating
charm compared to Dan Malloy's wonkish intensity. Harford insiders continue
to suggest Governor Dan Malloy will step down in early 2018 and allow
Wyman to become governor allowing her to run for the office as an incumbent.
This past fall the state came to an agreement with hospitals on a new
tax plan. The complicated back-and-forth arrangement of state taxes and
payments back to the hospitals actually is employed by most states as
a means to leverage federal aid. In 2011 the industry paid $350 million
in taxes and got back $400 million in supplemental payments. As state
government struggled frequently with budget deficits over the past six
years, the tax grew while the supplemental payments shrank.
Hospitals paid $556 million in total last fiscal year and received $118
million back. So while the state will make money from hospital taxes localities
get none of that revenue and the payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT) program
has never worked as promised and essentially dead for any real reimbursement
L&M Hospital and its affiliation with Yale New Haven Health provides
an invaluable service to the community, but are they also a large corporation
making millions of dollars and getting even richer off the tax breaks
afforded by their exempt status?
While we don’t pretend to know that answer we do know L&M is
another city tax exempt entity that places a huge demand on our police/fire
services with over 500 calls for services in 2017 alone. Calls ranging
from assaults on staff, unruly combative patients, found street drugs
and or patients with arrest warrants and fire alarms. The sector car assigned
to the south part of the city routinely spends much of each shift at the
hospital instead of patrolling the assigned area. Bottom line we tie up
a lot of manpower and city expenses each week at the hospital while the
city gets no tax revenues in return. Maybe it's time for City Hall to
have discussions with hospital officials for voluntary payments.
elections are just days away with many incumbents and former councilors
vying for another term to serve with the usual platitudes used for the
past 40 years: ", New London is a diamond in the rough, waiting to
be discovered, on the cusp of turning around, etc, etc, etc. Reality is
the city can't figure out what it wants to be or how to get there and
faces dire fiscal challenges.
Councilors should be tasked to develop a five and ten year plans of what
the future of the city should be then actually implement it to enhance
revenues, increase city services and become attractive to new development.
Because the status quo for the last two generations is strangling New
London. You can't complain if you don't vote, so shape tomorrow by voting
this Election Day.
Taxpayers claim the city budget is excessive demanding lower spending
in hopes of lower taxes but city municipal spending is already thread
bare with understaffed departments citywide leaving it unable to improve
upon city services. With almost one third of the annual operating budget
from state handouts, is taxpayer rationale that city spending cuts will
be backfilled by the state? Are residents willing to accept even less
city services and if so, what services are next to be eliminated? Will
those cuts make the City even more unattractive?
Some share the idealistic political stance that government should be run
like a business. But reality is business exists to make a profit with
the luxury of dumping a line of business that’s not profitable or
streamline offerings to serve a particular sector of the population. Government
agencies don't have that option and provides services for all citizens
through "the common good"– things like roads, schools,
and police protection.
We want to thank our City Councilors for recently voting unanimously 6-0
(one abstention) approving our three year labor contract. The lack of
a state budget makes for hard choices but this council realized our challenges
and how hard our members work trying to preserve public safety in the
city by accepting the agreement.
the council voted for our contract, anti-police agitator-in-residence
Kris Wraight pleaded with city councilors to deny the police contract
and instead use designated police funding to replenish any BOE cuts being
discussed with her outrageous suggestion that to approve the police contract
and not take the police funding to restore BOE funding would directly
cause New London children to become criminals.
While she has every right to be heard as everyone else, it is troubling
that Ms. Wraight a sitting member of the Police Community Relations Committee
charged with improving police relations spouts such inflammatory nonsense.
But upon closer look of her anti police antics, her views should not come
as a surprise since her beliefs revolve around people with power, privilege
and oppression in social hierarchy and those that don’t. In fact
she offers seminars that, "encourages to interrupt these systems
of oppression with an application of anti-oppression framework with those
who have a willingness to interrogate power".
views mirror similar Marxist class struggle beliefs and trigger words
against the establishment (you and me) and sound like phrases often used
by Bob Avaian, leader of the Revolutionary Communist Party USA. Avian
dreams of a communist overthrow of America where, "Everyone who hungers
for a radically different world, free of exploitation and oppression and
all the needless suffering caused by this system, needs to work now with
a fired determination to make this happen, so we will have a real chance
to win". Kris continue to offer your beliefs in public as you have
only yourself to blame for becoming more irrelevant every day, keep up
the good work.
Executive Board members are grateful for the continued success of our
ongoing fundraising campaign to purchase new police K9's. We have raised
almost $19,000 of our $28,000 goal allowing us to purchase two dogs named
Rocky and Jesse who start a 12 week patrol and drug detection training
program this month before deployed to the streets.
However our work is not done, the Union intends to purchase two more patrol
K9's in July upon completion of our fundraising efforts. Thanks you everyone
who has generously donated to date.
We encourage all of our readers to make your donation today to ensure
the future success of our K9 Unit. Any amount is gratefully accepted.
Your check can be mailed to: New London Police Union- K9 Fund, PO Box
135, New London, CT or for your convenience utilize our New London K9
Unit gofundme page.
you know that one in eight New London County residents is food insecure?
That’s 34,670 of your neighbors. In addition, one in six, or 10,840,
children is food insecure. Please join Local 724 at the New London Shop
Rite on Saturday November 18th from 9:00 am - 4:00 pm for our 2017 Pack
the Paddy Wagon Food and Turkey Drive. Come down to Shop Rite and donate
nonperishable food items or a frozen turkey, or even both. All donations
benefit the Gemma E. Moran United Way/Labor Food Center which are used
to fill traditional holiday baskets and support holiday community meal
sites in New London County. Our members look forward to meet and greets
with our community at large. We also encourage all of our city luminaries
to stop by and say hello and maybe even get their photo posted on our
was a famous Athenian statesman and orator in the later 5th century who
is quoted "just because you do not take an interest in politics does
not mean politics won't take an interest in you".
Local 724 has said many times organized labor must have a seat at the
politicians table or your probably on their menu. In April 2013 Vice President
Joe Biden confirmed those thoughts in a speech to Michigan Democrats was
quoted " Labor must have a seat at the table". We believe all
politics is local and politics decides who gets what when. Local 724 continues
to ensure our members not only have a seat but that we are heard.
early September Comptroller Kevin Lembo abruptly ended his exploratory
campaign for governor removing the best-known Democrat from the field
for 2018. The announcement eliminates one of the better known Democrats
from a crowded field of candidates mulling a run for the nomination to
succeed Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy who is not seeking re-election
in 2018. Lembo simultaneously announced his candidacy for re-election
as comptroller. His announcement does not signify an entrance into the
race by Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman, a former mentor whom Lembo has said he would
support for governor. Nancy Wyman continues to consider her options and
won't make any decision until the state passes a budget.
Meanwhile persistent rumors from all over Hartford political insiders
that Malloy will step down before his term ends in January 2019 and allow
Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman to become governor. Malloy, under the scenario, would
then take a high-ranking position at UCONN or another college. Malloy
calls the rumors crazy insisting he's not going anywhere. But he is known
to spin things as in August 2014 when running for a second term told a
reporter , “We really don’t have a deficit,” he said.
“I know that’s hard to believe.” Yes governor, it's
hard to believe that you didn't see what everyone else saw.
no gubernatorial candidate with statewide name recognition in the race
former Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz is considering entering the
field as a potential candidate for governor. Bysiewicz served three terms
as secretary of state from 1998 to 2010. This wouldn't be the first time
that she sought higher statewide office. However, her prior runs for governor,
attorney general, and Senate all ended in spectacular failure. Bysiewicz
dropped out of the 2006 gubernatorial race against GOP Gov. Jodi Rell
to seek re-election. She ran for governor again in 2010 when Rell retired,
but also dropped out of that race before the Democratic primary after
spending a year on the campaign trail. Bysiewicz then tried to run for
attorney general in 2010, but the state Supreme Court found she lacked
the legal qualifications to run because she hadn't actively practiced
law for the necessary 10 years.
the fall season settles in we have endured over 90 days without a state
budget caused by our feckless representatives in the Legislature unable
to accomplish anything. This stalemate has compounded the usual fiscal
crisis in New London already paralyzed by many years of severe belt tightening
due to frail city budgets. While tax payers rightfully bicker over their
tax rate and its impact on them, the city can't or won't raise enough
revenue to properly fund their obligations for the cost of doing business.
Their perpetual mantra of deferred maintenance and procurement until catastrophic
failure is a disturbing reality. Not even squeaky wheels get the attention
around here anymore. There comes a time and place where it's simply is
no longer safe to continue as usual and by all accounts - we're there.
London like many distressed cities is on the brink of collapse given the
sky-high unemployment, crime issues and array of social woes that afflict
us , many people have given us up for dead. Just look at the number of
houses for sale south of the hospital. What's more, traditional city services
have been overwhelmed. In fact just this past week
the public learned what we have been saying for quite some time. While
crime rate in surrounding areas has declined New
London has increased. Violent crime up 26% and property crimes up
17%. It's time for a municipal turn around before New London is the new
Detroit and there is not much time left on the clock.
New London can watch things happen, make things happen or wonder what
happened. The City needs to make things happen with a definitive five
and ten year plan to attract developers and business that bring in real
jobs. Develop our deep water port, develop Ft. Trumbull, attract bio-medical
fields that compliment the hospital, go after defense industries that
can synergize efforts from EB projects, sell Ocean Beach to the right
developer that can make it the sparkling gem it once was. Take for example
where was New London's bid to attract Amazon wishing to expand with a
New jobs will bring in a workforce that wants to move close to their employer,
provides city new tax revenues and people with disposable income that
will support city small businesses. Decide what downtown wants to look
like and find ways to redevelop it. Or… continue to wonder what
happened wishing New London realizes it's untapped potential all by itself
as it sinks into insolvency.
friends Sherman and Mr. Peabody fired up the Way Back Machine again, this
time we set the dial to our October 2016 update where news articles regarding
an OSHA inspection on our mold infested and dilapidated police headquarters
conditions made news. At the time risk manager Paul Gills was quoted then
that issues inside the police department as "this is a top priority
from a liability and safety standpoint". We reminded Paul then he
would have a chance to see if his words actually translate into deeds.
So how's he doing?
Well, first the good news: the building is moderately
cleaner with a more focused daily maintenance schedule, the lunch room
and men's locker room bathroom were remodeled, some wooden booking area
doors were replaced with metal ones and some new basement florescent lighting
Then there's bad news:: building still leaks during rain
storms, cell blocks require significant safety upgrades, rodent/bug infestation,
radio system still not been upgraded, no emergency alarm in processing
area, report room not remodeled, broken furniture still exists or cheap
replacements being utilized, outdated and obsolete IT system/hardware
with almost daily failures, and police parking lot too small. Paul you
may need to refocus your efforts or explain to us what just your meaning
of top priority is.
While we're on the topic of our daily challenges, police fleet management
best practices recommends city police patrol car replacement every 4 years.
Reasons include significant wear and tear of these emergency vehicles
which makes it cost prohibitive to keep them safe and reliable for the
officers or the public should a catastrophic part failure occur. Similarly
managers recommend a 7 year life span for detective and support staff
vehicles while police motorcycles average 3-4 years of service.
as we take a peek behind the curtain here in the Whaling City we see our
Patrol fleet numbers 25 vehicles, the average age is 5.3 years. However
19 patrol vehicles are 6 years or older with the oldest (2006) being 11
years old. Support Services has 12 vehicles average age is 8.3 years,
11 are over 7 years or older with the oldest (2001) being 16 years old.
Our two motorcycles average age is 15.5 years with the oldest (2001).
Another words 31 of our 39 vehicle fleet or 80% of the police fleet are
being utilized beyond their recommended life span.
Recent examples last weekend of August three cruisers downed for overheated
engines, second week of September two cruisers downed for blown transmissions,
while two others slip badly waiting for transmission repairs.
Another example is our "new" radio system. In May 2013 with
much fanfare New London announced it was on the "verge of a new era
in radio communication" as part of a $2.38 million system overhaul.
This joint venture with Waterford allowed police and fire to utilize the
more advanced 800 megahertz digital network with promised better interoperability
and coverage and "flawless between our two towns". So here we
are 4 1/2 years later no closer to joining Waterford that we were in 2013.
any New London story is ruined by the facts, City Office of Economic Development
oversaw the project and went cheap on the actual required costs taking
the risk it was to be a quick 12-24 months to regionalize dispatch with
Waterford so they never installed enough antennas creating dead spots
for city wide coverage and failing to keep up with required periodic system
upgrades. Digital radio is black and white -it only works when it has
a deliberate signal-or it doesn't work at all. Unlike analog radios like
your car radio where you could pick up weaker signals. There are very
real dead spots throughout the city where police portable radios don't
When the USS Cole visited the City last month the Norwich Police Marine
Unit provided harbor security because we sold our boat years ago. To witness
other agencies doing our work in our own city because once again we lack
the manpower/equipment/resources. Subcontracting out our jobs is demoralizing
but our reality nonetheless. That’s what happening behind the big
curtain no one wants you to see.
The City is very aware of these and other police agency issues but doesn't
hasn’t' found the will and/or ability to secure the money and address
it in the last five budget years or the new FY17-18 budget. Frankly we
don't expect it addressed in the next five years either. However ignoring
the problem or feigning ignorance a problem even exists won't make it
better by itself. There are very real consequences due to this continued
and deliberate failure to act creating liabilities which could very well
bite the city in the ass from future civil litigation.
As advocates for our membership we believe it is important for you the
taxpayer to know just how your money is and is not being spent on city
public safety issues and to hold your elected officials accountable, especially
in 2017- when all City Councilors are up for re-election.
Despite these daily hardships our men and women continue to do excellent
work the past few weeks where they have interrupted several burglaries
in progress with suspects caught in the act, arrested several suspects
for assaults, carjacking, robberies and significant drug violators which
just scratches the surface of our members continued commitment to protect
are excited to announce our K9 Unit fundraising campaign goal of $28,000
to obtain two German shepherd patrol dogs started in mid September and
in a just few short weeks have raised almost $14,125 with very generous
donations of $3,000 from the Buscetto Family, $5,000 each from Tantor
Media of Old Saybrook and Curtin Livery of Waterford. To enhance the campaign
and simplify community contributions we started a Go Fund Me page. The
link is on the top of Local 724 web site.
Join our team helping our K9 Unit take a bite out of crime by making your
contribution on our go fund me link or by check payable to: New London
Police K9 Fund, PO Box 135 New London, CT. 06320. Be the real hero and
As an added incentive if your business donates to the K9 Fund we'll post
your company logo and web site link on our New London Police Union web
page as our way of saying thanks!
Why Political Action
THE DECISIONS that a legislative body makes, whether it is a school board,
city council, county board, state legislature, or the U.S. Congress, affect
AFSCME members and their families in dramatic ways.
Elected officials vote on budgets that affect employee wages, benefits,
working conditions and pensions. They vote on issues of particular concern
to AFSCME members, like privatization, and they vote on broader issues
of concern to all working families, such as health care reform and workers'
compensation. That's why working people need to have allies among elected
officials. And that's why working people need to work to elect these allies.
The Local 724 executive board has the collective responsibility to provide
vision and direction for the local. It is up to the leadership team to
look ahead, set goals and develop a plan to make strategic planning a
critical element to having a strong union which can only come about when
membership is informed, educated and active.
Unions can never hope to match the hundreds of millions of dollars big
business pours into every election. But working people have superior numbers,
so they can get out in the streets and work for candidates. And if members
pool their cash, unions can help make sure that their endorsed candidates
have enough funds to compete against business-backed opponents in the
ever-more important media ad wars.
Through the political process we can be involved in setting important
public policy. Through the political process public employees can elect
representatives who are sensitive to maintaining vital public services
and committed to dealing with workers fairly.
Local 724 accomplishes this through political action in conjunction with
the exercise of collective bargaining process, growth and community involvement
to produce a just and rewarding workplace.
724 gets recognized on the national level!
On January 28, 2011 at
the Council 4 Campaign for the Middle Class Seminar in Meriden The American
Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), AFL-CIO
thanked the New London Police Union- Local 724 for their efforts in the
Labor 2010 campaign.
Lee Saunders, International Secretary-Treasurer and AFSCME Council 4's
Sal Luciano who is also an International Vice President honored Local
724 with a certificate "In recognition of their tireless work and
commitment during the 2010 State of Connecticut general elections".
To this day labor leaders throughout the state continue to praise our
Malloy/Wyman Pre-Debate Rally as a new benchmark of what local labor can
achieve when committed to a goal.
Chuck Flynn was honored to accept the award on behalf of our entire membership
which will hang proudly in the 724 "Hall of Justice". I want
to personally thank everyone that participated in some way no matter how
big or small. Our election success was due to the collective efforts of
our TEAM-Together Everyone Accomplishes More.
724 helps East Lyme fight the cause
Why Political Action
Shooting from the lip
Political Director C Flynn
Crippling Leadership Mistakes