And Justice For All A NEWSLETTER
Issue # 45 Opinions Of A Citizen
February , 2017 John Milardo
Justice for All is a newsletter involving my opinions, views, and commentary as a lifelong Middletown resident. As my capacity as a former employee and staunch Labor Leader of City of Middletown Unions, (retired0 with 42 years of service, I have a different perspective of how and why public figures do what they do.
Well, it’s been a long time since I shared my opinion with you, my friends. Hope all has been
well with everyone and you are all enjoying life to the fullest.
Our Mayor, Dan Drew, has announced he is looking into running for Governor of our State.
Well that comes as no surprise to me and probably most of Middletown. As Councilman
Thomas Serra once said, he wanted Middletown government to be transparent….and Dan
Drew is the most transparent person you will ever see.
We all know the history of his political career. He came to Middletown after being a beat
reporter down south to begin his political career. Middletown was the most logical place for
him to begin because his hometown of New Milford was Republican territory. After
Democratic Councilman Vincent Loffredo relinquished his Common Council seat, Dan was
appointed to it by the Democratic Majority and served a 6 month stint as a Common Council
member, which gave him exposure and subsequently led to him being elected Mayor.
Many knew Dan was using Middletown as a stepping stone for higher political offices. He was
elected twice, to two (2) year terms of office as Mayor, and the third election was for a four (4)
year term. Well, he is now half way through his four (4) year term, and cannot see himself
staying as a Mayor in Middletown, or any town, any longer. He is in a “no lose” situation. If
he does run for Governor and loses, he still is Mayor of Middletown for the next two (2) years
and brings home a paycheck. If he wins, he gets closer to his goal. I will guarantee you if he
does not become Governor, he will look into running for some other higher political seat. Dan
Drew has no love for Middletown; it was part of his master plan to become a career politician
in D.C before he is 40 years old. He wants the money that comes with a Washington position.
Tick, tock, tick, tock.
He claims in his current political propaganda how Hilary Clinton’s loss as Presidential
candidate was an eye opener for the Democratic Party. How he is the best person because of
his vision, for these political times to correct the States woes. How Governor Dannel Malloy
has created a mess in Connecticut (which I cannot disagree with), and he can fix it. (Drew
sounds like Bernie Sanders now that Hillary has lost) Dan Drew was one of Hillary’s biggest
supporters and denounced Sanders during the Democratic Presidential primary. Now, he
somewhat denounces the Democratic Party and all that he and Malloy stood for, but not totally.
He still needs their money and support for a Governor run.
Dan Drew and Dannel Malloy were conjoined at the hip until Hilary Clinton was defeated this
past November. What changed their relationship that Drew is contemplating running for
1.) Everyone knew when Hillary won, Dannel Malloy was going to be appointed to some type
of seat in Washington D.C.
2.) When Malloy left Connecticut for Washington D.C., Dannel would have endorsed Dan
Drew as his successor for Governor of Connecticut.
3.) Ops!!! Donald Trump won the Presidential election!
The Democrats didn’t think Trump had a chance in hell to win the Presidential election, and
that put a monkey wrench in everything! Everything includes both Malloy and Drew’s future
Back to the present. Dan Drew is not going to sit in Middletown and wait to get to higher
office. He had a game plan, which was disrupted, so he will go to plan #2 -- which is to run for
Governor now! If that fails, he will run for another political Connecticut position which will
land him in Washington D.C. If you think that won’t happen, just wait and see. No one,
including Dannel Malloy had an inkling that his favorite Connecticut Mayor would cut his
throat and announce he was running for Governor. Nothing is sacred to Drew.
Mayor Dan Drew loves to tell everyone how he changed and brought Middletown into the
future. It is only because of his leadership that Middletown is such a great City. All past and
present department Directors, less one, have or had, no idea how to do their jobs. Of course he
won’t acknowledge any shortcomings of Middletown while he’s been at the helm. That’s my
Drew consolidated departments with his reorganization plan, stating it would save the
taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars to millions each year. That it would better serve
the public and get work done more effectively and efficiently.
False. It has been an epic failure of money and efficiency. It has cost the taxpayer much
more money than if he had left the departments alone. He has never proved the
reorganization has been effective. His own budgets have proved that point.
Attended school while he was Mayor to receive a Masters Degree from Columbia
University. All under secrecy and on the taxpayer’s dime. Staff had to lie to the public and
newspaper reporters when asked where he was.
Danny, may I call you Danny? Never said a word when Governor Malloy took money away
from Middletown. All he said was it won’t affect us because we can pay for it with funds in
our budget. Danny’s attempt to show what a great administrator he is. Seems to me we
must be over taxed if you’ve got that kind of extra money in the kitty.
Under his leadership the City has taken over street lighting, which we were told was going
to save millions. Currently, according to budgets, it seems as though we are breaking even
or may be saving a little. But, there is no funding for replacement of lighting poles, fixtures,
and so on, in the budgets, which are going to be very, very, costly. When will that cost be
dumped on the taxpayer?
Middletown currently has over $100 million in bonds out for projects in town. The projects
are needed, but this is taxpayer debt to be repaid. The reason we are highly rated for
bonding is because we pay our debts back. What is the alternative, to claim bankruptcy?
No, the taxpayer will pay it back through higher taxes.
A $34 million bond for Public Work and Parks improvements, with absolutely no plans. A
blank check book for the Director of the department and whatever committees are put
together to disperse the funds. I’m sure a few cronies will be on the committees. Never
heard of a bond going out without an approved plan of action. This is a first. Real good
management of money Mayor! Why don’t we do this for road or water projects?
Speaking of taxes. Mayor Drew states he lowered Middletown’s taxes. I don’t know about
you, but everyone in Middletown has paid higher taxes each year, less election year, since
Dan Drew has been in office. As a matter of fact, Dan Drew’s budgets have been higher
than what is approved by the Common Council. If it weren’t for the Common Council
cutting the Mayor’s budget proposals, we would be paying even higher taxes. But Danny
will take the credit.
Mayor Drew always touts he is a great leader. Let’s see how he does that?
He has left Director and other management positions unfilled for years, not months. Only
one or two he have been filled within a year time. He must have learned at Columbia this
was good management practices or he wouldn’t do it.
The Director of Recreation is a position which has been vacant for four (4) years now. The
Assistant Director was appointed to that position in the “Acting” capacity. He refused to
appoint her permanently. Why? She has all the qualifications needed, and has been doing
the job. If she wasn’t doing the job, I would assume the Mayor would have removed her
from the position immediately! But you know what they say about that word….ASS-U-ME.
He appointed a Director to a position he/she did not meet the required minimum
qualifications. He did that by violating the Personnel Rule for the City of Middletown?
The person worked long enough in that job to bolster their pension by quite a lot. Yes sir,
The Water & Sewer project was $15 million over budget (and yet to be completed), but no
one in the department is held accountable. The Director has since retired, “hmmm“, and the
Deputy Director is now the “Acting” Director of Water & Sewer. Another qualified person
in the “Acting” position. Why don’t you make the appointment Mr. Mayor?
The IT Director position was vacant for 3+ years also. He had the Assistant filling in as the
“Acting” Director, and did not appoint him to the position. To appoint someone in the
“Acting” capacity, said person must, not may, be qualified to do the job. How can that
person then be told when they apply for the vacancy they are not qualified?
The Planning, Zoning & Conservation Director is currently vacant, for the second time
while Drew has been Mayor. Instead of appointing the Assistant Director in an “Acting”
capacity as Director, Mayor Dan brings in his Administrative Assistant, a political
appointment job in the Mayors Office, as the Acting PZ&C Director. A person who has
absolutely NO qualifications or experience to be in that position. How can this happen!!
Where is the Union? This is an UPSEU position and should have been filled with an
UPSEU member. That is what the Assistant Director is there for; to fill in for the Director
during his/her absence - for whatever reason. Can anyone tell me why a Union complaint
has not been filed? This is an UPSEU bargaining unit position! For full disclosure, this is
my old Union which I am calling to task.
If the Mayor appoints his Administrative Assistant as the PZ&C Acting Director, telling
everyone he is qualified. In the meantime, Mayor Danny is hoping the Democratic Council
will approve him as a permanent Director. I wonder if that does happen if Danny’s new
appointment for the Administrative Assistant will be a former Political Consultant? This
way he won’t have to pay his consultant work, Middletown taxpayers will be paying for it
Mayor Drew brags about saving $800,000 for the taxpayers through his flim-flam of
Retirement funds several years ago. The truth is he refused to adhere to the Retirement
Actuary to properly fund the pension plan. Drew played games with the funding. Wow!
That sounds like what Governor Malloy has been doing all these years with the State
pension plan. Maybe Drew really is Governor material!!
In the past, the Trade Unions have endorsed Dan Drew for his Mayoral runs. I am very familiar
with the Trades and other Union organizations and understand how and why they make
endorsements on the State and National levels. Locally, I would ask them to talk with the
Unions of the towns a political candidate is seeking their endorsements.
Middletown Unions, with the exception of one, have had a tumultuous relationship with Mayor
Drew, especially during negotiations. The local Unions have taken a step or two backward
economically under Dan Drew. He has yet to complete Union negotiations under time limits.
Police have gone to mediation and arbitration. AFSCME has been to mediation/arbitration.
UPSEU’s negotiations were on the verge of meditation/arbitration until they gave up certain
Union members to the Mayor. UPSEU lost many members to exempt status (non-union)
employees, and to that I say shame!
Mayor Drew has proved to be anti-union through his workings with the local Labor
Organizations he is directly responsible for. The City employees who were once Union
members and are now “exempt”, receive better wage and benefit packages as do Union
members. You cannot tell me he doesn’t do that for any reason? He asks for their complete
loyalty, even if it means to lie for him.
There are Union representatives who are afraid to properly represent their membership because
of Dan Drew’s heavy handedness. They have experienced his intimidation and harassment for
doing there job as a Union Representative. Whether it is direct or through someone else of
authority in his favor.
Lastly, to my Union Brothers and Sister I say this, and I say it with love and respect, as I know
how difficult being a Union Representative can be. If you unable to do your Union job
properly because of fear of retaliation, step aside, and have your International Local represent
your Union. You are not serving your constituency well if you cannot perform the job you were
elected to do. A Union represents all the members and issues all of the time! Not doing so only
injures them and their families.
In Brotherhood and Sisterhood. Stay strong, stay involved, seek the truth!
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this newsletter reflect the opinion and view of the author, and should not be construed as fact or advice. The author is a life long Middletown resident and taxpayer, and is sharing his opinion as such. The opinion and commentary do not reflect of any political party, organization, or citizen group. This newsletter reflects commentary and opinions which the author wishes to share with his friends.