mayor

Rally Against White Supremacy at Capitol

With little notice, a few hundred people came together on Thursday morning to unequivocally oppose white supremacy following last week’s violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Hartford’s Mayor Luke Bronin started the rally by saying that “It’s become difficult over the last year and a half to be shocked by the man who now sits in the Oval Office. But this past week was shocking.

A number of elected politicians followed with speeches on the north side of the Connecticut State Capitol. The rally was peaceful and without incident.

Besides this rally, at least eight vigils were held in Connecticut since Heather Heyer was killed in Charlottesville while speaking out against the racism. (more…)

IDEAS FOR 50 MILLION CARROT STICKS

This is a reader-submitted piece by Miguel Jose Matos, Hartford resident of twenty years. This fits in with our Suggestion Box series and addresses the recent pledge of $50 million over five years to the City of Hartford by Aetna, The Hartford, and Travelers.

by Miguel Jose Matos

by Miguel Jose Matos

 

Three of our local corporations have stepped up as committed partners to back Hartford to the tune of $50 million dollars over five years, if the City can get its financial house under control and come up with a workable plan for a viable future.

Funding the money hinges on the City putting forth a comprehensive and sustainable set of solutions for Hartford. The key piece of language in the corporate announcement was to be “part of” a plan, this was the clue. But based on media reports, the “when and how” have not been clearly spelled out, so it’s a great carrot but as yet no one is sure how long the stick is, and what will it take for our community to come together. A little over three million a year from each company is a great start.

“Push the corporate folk to drop their dime, while the City hammers out some fixes, use their dimes now to fund fixes; that without money remain unfixable”.

$10 million over 5 years is a good first step when having to climb out of a sinkhole fifty million dollars deep. But to get grounded we must back into the numbers, because the City is crippled with debt and limping with weak cash flow. It will be difficult to concoct a financial plan strong enough because of the City’s weak cash position, only making it harder to satisfy the conditional $50M Corporate Offer.

Corporate leaders are good community folks doing their part, protecting their investment and their workforce, but they understand risk and do not want to throw good money after bad. This narrative puts the City in a tricky position.

This point in time is a good opportunity to show the local corporations that the City has a plan that can be funded bit by bit with the corporate funds that are being offered. A project-by-project funding process based on a pay for performance system may mitigate some the upfront risk that has tied these moneys with a tough condition.

This tactic has relevance because it is not meant to only address the corporate funding offer, but to serve as the foundation for an annual Business Challenge Fund. Let’s get back to the corporations and be as corporate in approach as they are. Corner their attention by putting forth a recovery plan that is based on a return on their money and their participation. The approach is in many ways how corporations look at investing themselves. (more…)

Snow Emergency Parking Ban: February 8-10, 2017

No parking is permitted on Hartford streets from 8 p.m. on Wednesday, February 8 through 8 a.m. on Friday, February 10, 2017.

Vehicles remaining on roadways during this time are subject to ticketing and towing. Besides the general irritation of it, a towing experience will cost you around $200. Those whose vehicles get towed should call the HPD at (860) 757-4000 and check a data set to learn where the car has been towed to.

Residents in need of off-street parking have a number of options and should move vehicles to those lots before the ban begins. (more…)

Zunner Building Opens in Asylum Hill

L-to-R: Yvonne Matthews, Asylum Hill Neighborhood Association; Andrea Perreira, Local Initiatives Support Corporation; Luke Bronin, Mayor of Hartford; Lynda Godkin, NINA; Jack Ellovich, Hartford Community Loan Fund; Matt Ritter, State Rep.; Dannel Malloy, Governor

 

“Government sometimes gets it right,” Malloy told onlookers at the grand opening ceremony for The Zunner Building, a restoration project that has been, according to Lynda Godkin, 15 years in the making.

View of Asylum Hill from inside the Zunner Building, located at the corner of Garden and Ashley Street

In this case, the State of Connecticut was a significant source of the funding for what turned a 90-year old, much dilapidated building, into a refreshed mixed-use building with help from Northside Institutions Neighborhood Alliance (NINA).

Besides the State Housing Tax Credit Contribution Program, State Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program, and Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development, funding for $2.4 million renovation of 207-215 Garden Street came from the City of Hartford Façade Improvement Program, The Hartford Financial Services Group, Eversource Energy, Local Initiatives Support Corporation, Hartford Community Loan Fund, Travelers, Wells Fargo Bank, Connecticut Natural Gas, and ConnectiCare Insurance Company. (more…)

Bronin Releases Recommended Budget

The mayor’s 300+ page proposed budget can be reduced to one sentence: The party is over.

For years, certain parades and festivals had been held despite their organizers failing to pay for associated costs in full. This is one of Hartford’s open secrets. Even when the events may not have been well-executed or marketed, the City of Hartford continued to pick up the tab. Cultural events like festivals and parades could draw money into Hartford, but a single glance at the food trucks present for many of these events shows this not to be the case. How, then, can the strain on the HPD traffic division and on the DPW (for funsies, visit Bushnell Park at end of day following one of the major festivals before the crews come out in force to remove litter, empty the trash, and hose everything down) be justified if negligible revenue is created? Should Mayor Bronin’s proposed budget be adopted, we could still have parades for days, if we pay for them without help from the City. (more…)

Suggestion Box: Patching the Budget Hole

How we got here

The City of Hartford’s economic problems did not just happen. They did not spring up when Mayor Bronin was sworn into office. They did not emerge last year or even the year before that. (more…)

April 2016 Events

Live graffiti demo at Trinity International Hip-Hop Festival

This monthly event listing includes arts and entertainment, civic engagement, academic, cultural, wellness, and other types of activities happening in Hartford during April. There is no intent to include all events — it’s curated, with preference given to what the widest range of Hartford residents can afford (free or low cost) and what sounds most interesting to us.

This information is accurate as of publication to the best of our knowledge. Keep in mind that events are sometimes cancelled or postponed, and that incorrect details are at times given to us. Verify with the venue if you are concerned about last minute surprises.

To get an event published for next month, send details to realhartford@gmail.com by April 25th. Nothing is added after the calendar is published.

April 1

  • Perlas de Sabiduría: A Perspective on Latina Leadership in CT – at The 224 (224 Farmington Ave.), 8:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. This is a free day of talks. Ingrid Alvarez the Connecticut State Director of Hispanic Federation is giving a keynote at 9:30 about “The Diversity Pipeline.” There will be a plenary session at 9:45 called Personalismo: “Latinas: The Great Communicators.”  A second plenary session scheduled for 11 is called Gravitas: “Moving Towards Leadership.” A panel discussion is scheduled for the afternoon. Registration is required to attend the event
  • Starting today, the Connecticut Fair Housing Center will be displaying photo stories from Connecticut residents, along with student posters, in the Northeast Corridor of the Legislative Office Building.
  • Opening reception for Elements of Creation, a solo exhibition by Sarah Paolucci. The artist says: “In this series, these oil paintings tell the story of each artist/musician/craftsperson. I am painting hands, which are creating their own narrative. I am merely giving them a platform to display their knowledge. Hands are how we interact with the world around us, and connect us to the physical and the sensory. Hands that are playing, building, digging, planting, making or creating intrigue me; the creation of one’s own loving art, made with the tools that we all possess. From musicians in the Hartford Symphony Orchestra, to potters, to hair stylists, to chefs, each story is different, and yet each is just as sincere. These paintings portray genuine artists, doing what they love.” The reception is from 6-8 p.m. in the ArtWalk Gallery, located on the third floor of Hartford Public Library. Free.
  • The Mouth: April Fool’s – Stories About Getting Duped. This is a live storytelling event in which the speakers tell true stories and use no notes. This is $5 to attend; free if you are one of the storytellers. Contact HartfordMouth@gmail.com for more information. This begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Mark Twain House & Museum.
  • Fools Fall in Love: A musical cabaret in support of Night Fall 2016. Enjoy live music (Steve Mitchell and his band: Dan Campolieta, piano; Lou Bocciarelli, bass; Charlie Dye, drums with featured vocalists Christen Hernandez, LB Muñoz and more) while supporting this year’s production of Night Fall. It’s $40 to attend just the musical portion of the evening. 7:30 p.m. at Christ Church Cathedral (45 Church Street).
  • Spring Dance:  They say: “Directed by Lesley Farlow, this show is a celebration of student choreography and dancing. Featuring works by guest choreographers Pam Newell and David Llorca, curated by Lesley Farlow, and performed by Trinity students.” This is in the Austin Arts Center at Trinity College. Free, but tickets are required: (860) 297-2199. Performance at 7:30 p.m.

(more…)

Bronin Shoots Straight in State of the City Address

“We will help build a city that fosters innovation, incubation and entrepreneurship, because that’s what drives real, long-term growth — not expensive buildings or baseball stadiums,” Mayor Luke Bronin said in his first State of the City address on Monday in City Hall.

Even with the predictably depressing remarks, residents walked out of City Hall with respect for the no bullshit, factual assessment of where Hartford is, how we got here, and what we are going to do about it. (more…)