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Rilling unveils education platform in race to unseat Moccia

Harry Rilling education platform 101013 007
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Harry Rilling explains his education platform Thursday in front of Tracey Elementary School. Rilling said he was a school child himself behind those walls.

NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk’s teachers don’t get enough respect, former Norwalk Police Chief Harry Rilling said Thursday. Neither do other school employees.

The Democrat chose a school that holds “fond memories” for him, Tracey Elementary School, as a backdrop for announcing his education platform as he attempts to topple eight-year incumbent Republican Mayor Richard Moccia in 25 days. He said his attitudes had been formed by interacting with the teachers as they began the school year, and stressed that in his years as police chief he worked to keep the kids safe. He also lobbed a few criticisms at Moccia for the way the school budget came together this spring.

He said he thinks the teachers deserve to be treated better.

“It doesn’t have anything to do with money and benefits,” he said. “It has to do with being respected and getting the support that you need. That’s all they want.”

The teachers, who work with the children every day, are the experts city officials should be consulting, he said.

“We need to do more to prepare our young people to give them the best education possible, to prepare them to go out into that world,” he said. “You do that by working closely with all Board of Education employees. The teachers, the school nurses, the library aides, the teachers’ aides, the custodians, all the people who have direct or indirect contact with our students and who have an impact on them.”

The state’s Educational Cost Sharing (ECS) funding needs to be more equitable, he said. “We need a leadership that’s going to be working with the Hartford delegation, to be up in Hartford more frequently.”

Other key points:

• “We also used to do a much better job of giving all parents the opportunity to be engaged in their children’s school lives. Not all parents can do that right now because they may be working two or three jobs, but we have to integrate them into the school system because it’s always been shown that the greatest likelihood of success for a child is parental involvement, working together with the teachers showing the children that there are people that care and how important it is to apply themselves and succeed.”

• “It’s shameful when we get an 8 percent increase in Priority School funding money and ECS and, instead of using that to enhance the Board of Education and to give them that money in addition to what the city was already be putting in, that the money is pulled out and it’s substituted for the money that the city was putting in. So in essence, it’s a wash. You get $1.5 million above and beyond what you’re supposed to be funding the Board of Education for and you use that money for a substitute for city money. That’s taking a step backward.”

• “Taxes are always a concern but I think people when they get a good amount of services for their tax dollars understand that taxes are necessary. If you ask a thousand people if they want to pay taxes they’re going to say no, but they know that taxes are necessary. You have to spend responsibly and you have to fund the Board of Education responsibly, because when people realize that the school system is being funded properly they’re more likely to want to move into Norwalk. That brings more tax revenues. We need to grow our grand list in a positive way so that we can relieve some of the tax burdens, and I’ve said this over and over again, to relieve some of the tax burden off the shoulders of the homeowners yet grow the grand list so we do have more money to fund the school system.”

• “We need to make the Common Core program operational and funded so it can help close the achievement gap.”

City officials are working with the BOE to improve safety at Norwalk Public Schools, but Rilling said it should have been worked on a long time ago.

“It shouldn’t have had to wait for a tragedy someplace for us to be protecting the children in our school system,” he said. “Years ago I sent a police officer, a firefighter and a security person from the schools to Emmitsburg, Md., to learn (at the National Fire Academy) how to put together a schools readiness program. They brought back a generic program, were supposed to be working with the school system and the leadership of the school. The leadership of the city did nothing at that time did nothing to make it happen; it just gathered dust. Now, all of a sudden, it’s something that is a priority.”

He could not recall how many years ago that was, or who had been mayor. Four or five years ago, when Moccia was mayor, Rilling had Sgt. Andre Velez formulate a safety plan for Columbus Magnet School, he said. The recommendations that did not cost money were implemented but other ideas were not, he said.

Moccia declined to comment.

Comments

47 responses to “Rilling unveils education platform in race to unseat Moccia”

  1. Norwalk Lifer

    Good, GOOD!, a mayor that will not let the egotists at BOE ruin a potential stellar educational system, and FORCE them to work with the state.

    Good!

    Regards
    Norwalk Lifer

  2. Lifelong Teacher

    Harry has to be better than what we have now. Things couldn’t be worse. What happened with the city snatching away every dollar of the increased state education funding was a travesty. And Moccia was right behind it.

  3. notaffiliated

    4 pieces in this mornings feed all related to member of the Democrat party or affiliates. Hey, I saw where the former Mayor of Detroit got 28 years in prison – yup, $840,000 of tax payer dollars illegally into his pocket …priceless.

    (Editor’s note: I am not sure NEON is an affiliate of the Democratic Party. If so, the handful of folks who often comment on this site accusing us of bias should take note that NEON has been held up to harsh light here for months. The BOE candidate profile is one in a series. Today’s happen to be a Democrat. We have run profiles in the order they have arrived, and we have received and run more Republican profiles to this point. As for the two Rilling stories — the campaign finance list carries an intro line pointing out that we will have Mayor Richard Moccia’s finances tonight. As for the press conference story regarding Rilling’s education platform, Mocccia was given the chance to respond and said he did not have time.)

  4. Piberman

    No respect for Norwalk teachers ? The NFT’s monthly Vanguard urges members not to reelect certain BOE members and vilifies past BOE Chairs and Supts. Does Chief a Rilling agree with NFT statements criticizing bOE members and Supts ? Does Chief Rilling agree with the Arbitration Report that Norwalk teachers are the highest paid of any city in CT and well above our affordability ? Does he advocate even higher salaries and new taxes to pay for those salary hikes ? Does he agree with two current Democratic BOE members’ decision not to hire our new Supt ? How would Chief Rilling increase respect for teachers when their union disrespects the BOE and Supts ? Does Chief Rilling feel its proper … for the head of the school administrators union to take an active role in supporting a mayoral candidate ? Does Chief Rilling agree with the NFT’s head that the school system has been short changed 26.5 million dollars (Sept. 2013 Vanguard bulletin) ? Will he raise taxes to increase school teacher salaries ?

    (Editor’s note: This comment has been edited to removed inaccurate information.)

  5. M Allen

    So basically if taxpayers are kicking in more money to the BOE to “properly fund enducation”, and then we get more money from the state, all that money should keep going to the BOE. I’m sorry, why can’t some of the taxpayer funds be pulled back for taxpayer relief or be used in some other area that is underfunded? Why? Because education is always underfunded. Millions, billions, it doesn’t matter. It’s always underfunded. But its the kids right? More money and we’ll get those test scores up. More money or you don’t respect teachers because they aren’t the absolutely highest paid teachers in the nation. And since we don’t respect the teachers enough that really means we hate kids. More money, more money, more money. It is always more money. Yet more money doesn’t get the job done.
    .
    I know many of you have issues with the current mayor and administration. But our situation will not get better by making all kinds of tax and spend promises. Norwalk taxpayers don’t mind paying taxes. But it does reach a point where the value we receive in return no longer seems valuable enough. We are at that point now. The tax situation will not get better under a full slate of Democrats. Nor will ideas where just throwing more of our tax dollars at the problem won’t solve a damn thing.

  6. Joe Espo

    Harry wants to give away more of our money to Bruce Mellion’s NFT, and he wants to give away our neighborhood to the Al Madany monstrosity. Any wonder why he got contributions and endorsements from both?
    .
    God help us.

  7. LWitherspoon

    “It doesn’t have anything to do with money and benefits,” he said. “It has to do with being respected and getting the support that you need. That’s all they want.”
    .
    Does Mr. Rilling really believe that during the next negotiation with the NFT, the City can simply offer them a little more respect in lieu of yet another pay hike? “Sorry guys, no 4% raise this year, but we’re designating two days next school year as Teacher Appreciation Day.” I’d love to be a fly on the wall when City negotiators offer that plan. Something tells me that Union head Bruce Mellion’s reponse won’t be printable on a family-oriented website.
    .
    I do applaud Mr. Rilling for finally offering something approaching specifics with respect to what he would have done differently in last year’s budget. We now know that he would have spent an extra $1.5 million on education. What we don’t know is how he would have paid for it.
    .
    I’m sure if asked, Mr. Rilling would resort to the usual aspiring politician’s answer – he would find unspecified savings elsewhere. I’d be a lot more inclined to vote for him if he could outline some actual savings, so that we could be certain he isn’t just promising all things to all people with no strategy to pay for it.
    .
    Mr. Rilling has announced plans to spend another $1.5 million on education and an unspecified amount on additional police officers. Are there any other promises I’m missing? What will be the approximate sum total of this spending? Teachers have a 4% raise coming, what will that cost? Some specifics please.

  8. Another Harry

    Well, since Rilling approached the Republican leadership (Cafero, Scialabba) about running for mayor last year and was told no, I really think the D’s have got to be making him commit to raising taxes and to supporting Bruce Mellion up front so he doesn’t double cross them, too.

    I see that Bruce M is one of his big campaign contributors, and we know that to get something out of him, Harry must have signed the loyalty pledge for sure. Well, that works until the first paycheck clears.

  9. Daisy

    Another Harry – couldn’t put it better myself, so I won’t try.

  10. Monica

    Bingo. We have a winner.. Finally, a leader. Thank you Mayor Rilling for stepping up to serve, again. Now, lets get our town really moving forward.

  11. D(ysfunctional)TC

    Respect is a two way street. So is civility. Unless of course you are talking about beating up senior citizens, a favorite hobby of the DTC.

  12. Mike Mushak

    Rilling knows proper management can find huge savings in City Hall and in the current budgeting levels to prioritize spending to where it is really needed. The amount of waste in City Hall is astounding under Moccia, due to poor management, no staff meetings, no accountability, and little transparency.
    .
    Just take the P and Z Department, where the by-laws require a monthly financial statement showing ALL transactions be prepared by staff and reviewed by the Zoning Commission. I serve on that commission and have not seen a financial statement in years under GOP leadership of the ZC. This kind of nonsense occurred at NEON and we know how that turned out. We raised our zoning fines to help fund experts as needed 4 years ago, and yet, when I asked for experts to be hired to improve our obsolete drainage standards or for a traffic study for BJ’s, I was told we had NO money to do that. So, where did all that money go? We don’t even know the professional qualifications of our top P and Z staff, since Mayor Moccia has said it was none of the public’s business to know that. What are they hiding from the public, and why shouldn’t they be proud to share their qualifications as all public servants should who are being paid by taxpayers? Performance reviews of staff stopped when Moccia was elected. Why?

    A Rilling Administration will manage the finances better, restore faith in our commissions, and restore integrity to City Hall. By-laws WILL be followed. You can tell that concept makes a lot of folks nervous on this site and around the city who seem to worship the current widespread corruption of process, lack of accountability, and lack of transparency.

  13. Don’t Panic

    Oh puh-leez! This does not constitute a tax and spend agenda. But playing switcheroo with ECS money may explain why the state is reluctant to give us more.

  14. Oldtimer

    In a response in the Hour, Moccia called Rilling “ignorant”, demonstrating the very best of his debating skills, and, possibly signaling the end of their play nice, no personal attacks, agreement. If that releases both sides from their agreement, he may not like what Rilling has been holding back. Some of us were pretty sure Moccia would not keep his word for long.

  15. M Allen

    Assurances the new guy will make it all better doesn’t make it so. Even if a change were to take place, and even if he were to be the newest incarnation of Mr. Smith goes to Norwalk, government is not the way it is because of one person. I’d be pretty careful about overpromising. Barack Obama was hailed as the savior of the country, yet all the hope in the world couldn’t produce the amount of change he and his surrogates promised the sheep. But feel free to keep mismanaging those expectations. I almost feel bad for Harry, because all the changes his surrogates are promising simply can’t be accomplished fast enough.

  16. M Allen

    @Don’t Panic – how is it a “switcheroo”? Did the state give more in ECS funding based on the amount Norwalk was putting into the BOE budget the previous year or was it based on what Norwalk’s “fair share” should be? To be honest, I really have no idea how this stupid state allocates education funding. But if a million more comes from ECS, that could free up the budget for a million to go someplace else. Maybe that was a million we had to take from elsewhere in the budget to cover the BOE. Therefore in doing so, another area suffered. Switcheroo. Please.

  17. Joe Espo

    The more I read this the less I respect this guy’s ability to make sense. This is pure pablum for the low-information voter, except that there aren’t that many in Norwalk that Harry can rely on for votes.
    .
    “The state’s Educational Cost Sharing (ECS) funding needs to be more equitable, he said. ‘We need a leadership that’s going to be working with the Hartford delegation, to be up in Hartford more frequently. ”
    .
    Duh, yea, Harry: we need leadership but that’s not you. It’s Bob Duff and Chris Perrone that need to be changed out. You know: our guys with offices in Hartford? I guess you’re calling for Bob and Chris to be turned out next November for lack of leadership. I agree.

    BTW, did you keep up with last year’s battle in Hartford on the ECS formula? …When the BOE chairman, Jack Chiaramonte had shown leadership- with brass- and testified before the Education Committee and Bob Duff didn’t show up at the hearing? …when our majority-party delegation, Duff and Perrone, fell flat on their faces and we actually lost ECS dollars at the General Assembly’s democrat-controlled education committee level?
    .
    Do you honestly think that anyone will believe that a mayor can single-handedly transform the ECS formula?
    .
    Harry has morphed into Vinny; same level of incompetent wishful thinking devoid of any evidence, rationality, or reality.

  18. David

    I feel there are very few matters more important than Education. My children’s ability to participate in our future economy is directly related to the quality of education they receive. What I pay in taxes today will pale in significance to the future earning potential of my children, and with it the long term economic viability of Norwalk itself.
    .
    Mayor Moccia has played his cards on the education front, there are no missing puzzle pieces. It was a little over a year ago that Parents protested outside City hall, and filled the concert hall to capacity when the BOE was being forced to pay a “loan” back to the city in one year. At the same time, loans by Oak Hills were being extended by up to 12 years. Priorities were well established, right there.
    .
    Even when the BOE presented what was roundly received as a fair budget this year, it was met with adversity. It’s my opinion that education is seen by Mayor Moccia as an expense item, rather than an investment.
    .
    For Mr. Rilling, I would really like to see him come out with specifics, such as a commitment to fully fund the implementation of the Common Core curriculum in Norwalk through the capital expense fund where possible.

  19. D(ysfunctional)TC

    David missed the golf course making its payment this fall. He also is trying to compare a $3 million loan to the golf course to cover the restaurant that a 16-0 Democrat majority gave our city to the Billion and a half dollars that we’ve spent on education since then. Hope his kids don’t learn math and econ from the same place he did.

  20. Joe Espo

    @David: We just forgave $24 million in loans to the Maritime Aquarium. Did you protest that one? Imagine the top-shelf education your kids could get with that kind of money? We didn’t hear a peep from the usually squeaky skutches and gnats that complained about the Oak Hills loan or BOE loan. Why, you ask? Because the Aquarium is oh so politically correct, and so near and dear to our liberal hearts, and so…yes…kumbaya. After all, what would the little fishies do if it weren’t there. Twenty four million is one hell of a hit in our pocketbooks for fish. We could have built or re-habbed many schools, hired more teachers, added more programs and improved test scores. Teachers wouldn’t need to bring in their own supplies or do fundraisers to buy pencils. I heard not one word about that. Did you?

  21. David

    Joe Espo and DTC: You guys are making my argument for me. I’m simply pointing out a disparity for how each loan was treated. Parents protested because there was one set of rules for Education and another for Oak Hills (and subsequently the Aquarium, as you pointed out Joe).
    .
    I happen to think that having the golf course and the Aquarium adds to the livability of this city, and that’s very important. I’m not happy that the city gives away both money and resources at will to private enterprises (even if they are non profit) and yet when it comes to the economic security of our children they suddenly can’t find the resources.
    .
    So, yes, thank you Gentlemen – especially you Joe – further proof that Mayor Moccia simply doesn’t put education as a priority for this city. I find that unacceptable.

  22. Suzanne

    It’s funny: the words I just heard out of the mouth of Harry Rilling were not to take on more burden of leadership for himself as mayor but to allow others, as surrogates and leaders of Norwalk to go to Hartford, to speak with the teachers, to implement better cost strategies. In other words, for him to be a good manager of the city and cover the bases using talented individuals to help complete that task. While everyones’ eyes glaze over and cynicism abounds, I think Mr. Rilling is essentially talking about “management by walking around”, a good strategy if you really want to know what is going on. This was a press conference, a policy/concept speech, nothing more, and to expect a comprehensive detailed package on education in Norwalk is just not realistic. While anyone may ask Mr. Rilling on his WEB Site, trying to glean the utmost out of a comprehensive Education policy in this context is a loss of perspective as to what these types of press conferences are for. In the meantime, stay tuned for another Moccia ribbon-cutting.

  23. Suzanne

    Joe Espo, Just a heads up: Diane Cece has been fighting a lonely battle for years against the “forgiveness” in the forms of millions to the Aquarium. She has written letters tirelessly as well as appeared before the relevant commissions and Common Council to disagree with this expenditure. As a citizen of one, I would say every single official showed a tin ear. Her comments have paralleled yours, somewhat, all along but no one cared to listen, especially from this administration.

  24. David

    @D(ysfunctional)TC: Regarding your response to me:
    .
    “Hope his kids don’t learn math and econ from the same place he did.”
    .
    I’ve learned over the years that the first sign an individual is losing an argument is when they revert to attacking the person rather than the argument. You know nothing about me, my occupation, my education, where I live or how much money I earn. If you did, I guarantee you wouldn’t be making petty attempts to belittle my intelligence and education. Thank you.

  25. Admo

    I like what Harry is saying.Its been open season on teachers.The people who critizecand malign them wouldn’t last one day in a classroom.

  26. Joe Espo

    @Suzanne: I commend Diane for her efforts and I was duly impressed and gratified with her letter in today’s Hour. Of the Dianes that I know, she possesses far superior reasoning skills and acumen. My point was that the voices who raised cane with the Oak Hills and BOE loans – 5% or less of Maritime’s $24 million- and who were painting a picture of financial Armageddon to befall upon Norwalk for those loans… suddenly those voices fell silent. Perhaps they were suppressed? What a tragedy for Norwalk’s children and their education.

  27. D(ysfunctional)TC

    Stick to the subject David. We’ve spent billions on education. Stop comparing it to the golf course. Pointing out your lack any sense of scale on the differences is not an attack and I do sincerely hope your descendants are blessed with better reasoning capabilities.

  28. marjoriem

    Politics and spin as usual for the Republicans who comment. I want Rilling as Mayor.

  29. David

    Dtc, spending priorities are absolutely a valid part of the conversation. City budget is not made in a vacuum, everything is related. The mayor has a record and I’m highlighting it. It would appear that makes you very uncomfortable since you continue to attack me rather than the argument. And why wouldn’t it make you uncomfortable? You’ve established yourself as an apparatchik of the Republican Party and shining the light on Mayor Moccia’s education policy and his fiscal priorities isn’t good for his reelection prospects. But, hey, have at it, your petty attacks are a reflection on you and you alone.

  30. Oldtimer

    JOE ESPO
    “what would the little fishies do if it weren’t there”

    That question pretty well demonstrates how little you know about the Aquariums’s mission. It is a tourist attraction/educational institution and the captive marine life on display are hardly the reason it was built. Given the choice, they would not be there. The business it brings to Norwalk year round is well worth the money the City has invested.
    Have you ever visited the aquarium to see for yourself what happens there ? Or are you too smart to learn any more ?

  31. Tim T

    Rilling
    The expert on zoning——-NOT
    The expert on education——NOT
    The expert on budgets——–NOT
    The expert on DPW (sidewalks and roads)—-NOT
    Notice how he ignores a failed police department and out of control crime in his rhetoric . Could it be that it would reflect his time as police consultant . Carpetbaggers will say anything to get elected.
    All I can say if somehow he gets elected mayor is HOLD ONTO YOUR WALLETS as he has proven with his time as police consultant that he has no idea what a budget is. Also just where does he think the money to pay for his lofty idea is going to come from..one guess….THE TAXPAYERS.

  32. Suzanne

    Oldtimer, quantify the business the Aquarium brings to Norwalk. Various accounts talk numbers but few indicate it as anything more than a self-sustaining destination that doesn’t contribute much to Norwalk otherwise. Why has it been forgiven such huge debt? If it is such a valuable resource to our town, it can afford to pay the town back for the privilege of being there. While it may have amazing resources for everyone’s education about marine life (and more, no?), it should pay back the taxpayers of Norwalk that made it possible in the first place.

  33. Julie

    I think its wonderful that Mr. Rilling is running on an education platform. He gets it.
    Rilling understands that investing in education, in a top notch school district, will reap a bountiful harvest. Rilling has common sense and being a lifetime Norwalker, coming up through the district, the man cares. What was done to the district was shamefull but some are wihout, any, shame apparently. Thank you for stepping up Mr. Rilling. Ignore the cheap shots, you know already, it comes with the job, stay focused.

  34. grandma cook

    Boys, boys, boys. Ignorant? Low information? Code for prejudice? Some may seek to divide and conquer. Fools errand, is it not? Just come out and say you hate blacks, latinos gays, freethikers and anyone else who is’t just like you. Just admit your racist and move somewhere where you fit in because you dont fit in here, we are not racist here in Norwalk.

  35. Suzanne

    Tim T – WHAT YOU DON’T GET: Mr. Rilling does not have to be an expert in any of those categories. He does need to have a set of objectives and manage those who are the experts well. THAT IS WHAT A MAYOR DOES. Perhaps you are enjoying the TAX INCREASES a bit TOO MUCH under this MOCCIA administration? ENJOY! The longer we hold out, THE BETTER IT GETS!

  36. Tim T

    Suzanne
    – WHAT YOU DON’T GET: Mr. Rilling acts as if he is an expert on everything. He was a disaster as police consultant and would be a disaster as mayor. However all indications are he has almost no chance of winning.. Thankfully.

    Also you just don’t seem to get it all the feel good B/S that Rilling and your type want cost money.. THATS CALLED TAX INCREASES..

    He does need to have a set of objectives and manage those who are the experts well. THAT IS WHAT A POLICE CONSULTANT DOES AND HE FAILED MISERABLY IN THAT POSITION.. He couldn’t run one department and now wants to run the whole city.. TOO FUNNY.. If you would like to refresh your memory about the disaster Rilling was as police consultant I would suggest you look back at some of my previous posts that provide links to his disaster aka the NPD.

  37. Suzanne

    Tim T – Refresh my memory with FACTS and CONTEXT of these supposed disasters under RILLING and I would take your obvious bias into consideration. Whatever happened to you with the NPD that makes you so completely bitter about their competency? (I have never seen an explanation of this. Without it, you sound like a crank, easily dismissed.) I have had only good, competent, efficient experiences and cannot agree with you unless you PROVE otherwise.

  38. Tim T

    Suzanne
    I always find it comical that when one points out the failures of a police department someone always comes back with the ridiculous statement of “Whatever happened to you with the NPD “. I could say the same about you with zoning!!!
    Let me be 100 percent clear with you. I have never had a run in with the NPD or any police department for that matter..
    I am just pointing out that department is a failure in my mind and that of many in Norwalk. I could also add that it became a failure under the “leadership” of Rilling.
    I could careless if you agree with me or not ,so with that in mind I don’t have to PROVE anything to you or anyone else. Also as I stated you can look back in my past posts and see the many many links that I have posted. If I remember correctly you have commented on them before and dismissed them as the facts did not meet your agenda.
    You know what they say some people cant handle the truth.
    Have a great weekend. I hear Sunday should be a nice day to use the unused bike lanes.

  39. Rod Lopez-Fabrega

    BICKER BICKER BICKER…

    It all boils down to this:

    Do you want to keep a mayor who is actively affiliated with a political party that has let itself be hijacked by an extremist minority (think tea), leading that party to discredit the reputation and stability of a country (think USA), until now the financial bedrock of the entire world? Do you want to keep a mayor who is actively affiliated with a politial party that represents the interests of the 10% at the top and has been making every attempt to disenfranchise minorities (think gerrymandering) and eliminate popular and effective programs that benefit the 90% (think Medicare, Medicaid, Veterans benefits, ad infinitum)? Do you want a mayor who is actively affiliated with a party that has openly demonstrated its prime goal is to eliminate a president it does not like (think color) rather than to govern?

    Or would you prefer a mayor actively affiliated with a party that, with all its imperfections, and in the memory of the oldest among us (think New Deal), has traditionally stood for the interests of the 90% ?

  40. Piberman

    It’s worth noting that the current issue of the NFT’s monthly Vanguard urges teachers to vote for Democrats across the Board. And the Vangusrd in this issue mentions a “missing” 26.5 million from school funding in recent years. It seems reasonable to expect Democrat. Control of City government to increase City funding and taxes to pay for it.

    One wonders why the Chief wants to influence school policies when voters have an elected BOE for that task.

    One wonders why a Democratic candidate would complain about ECS funding when the Democrats controll both the legislature by a super majority and the Governor’s office. If a Democrats wanted more equal ECS funding they just need pick up the pencil.

    Norwalk teachers can’t be so unhappy with their pay – highest of any city in the state. But their union sure is unhappy with the Reublican BOE that’s delivered a superb new Supt. Strange that 2 of the 3 Democrats on the BOE voted against hiring the new Supt. Democrat control of the BOE might well bring back the 1990s when the NFT had de facto control of the BOE with revolving Supts.

    If school teachers want more respect its easy. Stop interfering with Norwalk ‘s governance and focus on the job. Stop criticizing the BOE and Supts in their monthly Vanguard. No other teachers union engages in these practices in our state. Hostility doesn’t bring respect.

  41. Tim T

    Rod Lopez-Fabrega
    Clearly your post shows that the Rilling campaign is in panic mode, now that its looking more and more that he has ZERO chance of winning. Your comparison of Moccia to a Washington Tea Party Republican is comical. In as much as I am no fan of Moccia, he is far far from a tea party Republican. I am a life long democrat and have NEVER voted for a Republican however this time around I and many many democrats will be voting Republican, as Rilling would be the same disaster as mayor as he was as police consultant.

  42. Suzanne

    Tim T, you do have a bee in your bonnet. I have read the same things on these threads about life-long Republicans this time voting Democratic for Mayor. Life is messy – the NPD will never satisfy you. It is amazing that you are so critical of it when you have no experience of it. Perhaps you need to live in another place where police departments are truly incompetent to know just how good this one is. My only agenda is that if I should ever have to call 911 (which I have had to do due to an accident in front of my house), that the NPD responds quickly and responsibly. That and other issues with which they have courteously and efficiently helped me with inclines me to support them. Because of PERSONAL EXPERIENCE, not conjecture, not what I read in the newspapers. That’s not an agenda, that’s a fact. Go for it, Tim T. Whatever your issue, I am sure you will come up with a complaint, diatribe, etc., all of which negatively reflects on you, disturbs me not in the least and contributes nothing to additional awareness or dialogue. It is so primitive, I can’t for the life of me figure out what disturbs you about, of all things, bike lanes!

  43. Tim T

    Suzanne
    You have no idea what I do or do not have experience in ..
    However here is a recent issue in regards to the NPD. I am Sure you will make excuses but that is to be expected.

    Norwalk officer makes suicide threat, prompts Newtown school lockdown

    http://www.thehour.com/news/nw-police/norwalk-officer-makes-suicide-threat-prompts-newtown-school-lockdown/article_71cb9cf6-c261-5121-97ea-045a27df19fb.html

    Talk about an unstable group.

  44. Suzanne

    “At approximately 10:16 a.m., the Norwalk Police Department contacted Newtown Police and advised them that one of their off duty officers had threatened to harm himself. That this individual was on his way to his wife’s house on Jo Mar Road in Newtown.”
    The statement went on to say that Newtown officers were dispatched to the Jo Mar home, where the unidentified officers vehicle was found, unoccupied.”
    Norwalk Police Chief Thomas Kulhawik said he is thankful that the incident came to a safe conclusion.
    “We appreciate the assistance of the Newtown Police Department and members of the Connecticut State Police,” Kulhawik said. “We are fortunate that our officers who responded were able to quickly intervene and assist. The officer will be receiving all the assistance necessary and our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family as they work through some very difficult times ahead.”
    “Newtown Police say no threats or shows of any weapons were made at any time toward police. The State Police K9 unit assisted with a search of the home for other weapons, but none were found.”
    “The Connecticut State Police Emergency Services Unit and the Norwalk Police Negotiation Team were called in for assistance and eventually made contact with the officer, who was taken to Danbury Hospital for an evaluation.”

    To take the desperate act of one person, who happens to be very ill, within the context of the article YOU cited as quoted above, to show that all of the appropriate steps were taken to save that man who is now hospitalized, the quick response and prevention of a suicide: THIS is your example of NPD incompetence? This is similar to ALL of the articles you site where you shoot yourself in the foot. It shows exactly how an effective police department SHOULD respond and did so successfully saving lives, including those of the possible perpetrator TO HIMSELF. You keep revealing your complaints with this very important department in our town as shallow as your comments. I will no longer be engaging with you in any way because this just isn’t fruitful dialogue. It is wasted time with a vacuous crank that contributes nothing to community except to show that when you just read the headlnes, you miss an awful lot of facts.

  45. Rod Lopez-Fabrega

    Tim T: Can you deny that the Republican Party has been hijacked by the Tea Wing? So far as anyone can tell, Mayor Moccia very clearly is an active member of the hijacked Republican Party. If for no other reason, he will be known for the friends he keeps.

  46. Tim T

    Rod Lopez-Fabrega
    Other than being a republican please tell me how Mayor Moccia is a tea part supporter. As a matter of fact most republicans do not support the tea party. …

    (This comment has been edited to conform to our comment policy. Because comments have become more vitriolic and personal of late, we have tweaked our policy and will be enforcing it more tightly. Please check the updates, which are marked)

  47. RU4REAL

    You lasted longer than anyone else Suzanne, kudos!

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