Thursday, July 26, 2007

Elm City ID Cards

Well Folks:

The City of New Haven has been in the national news recently with regard to our new Elm City ID Card (please note that the card is a multi purpose resident card for ALL of the city's residents).

I posted about this earlier in one of my posts. Since then I have been getting some correspondence looking for clarification of the program. In reading & listening to the general media coverage I see where these questions are coming from.

The short of it is that we are providing a service to the general population as well as a chance for undocumented people to live a safer life here in the city. All of this is at no direct cost to the city.

We are doing this because the Federal Government is not able to come up with an effective and solid immigration policy. We are just dealing with the reality of this inaction.

Following please find an outline of what some of the more common questions are.

Question #1
Why are we issuing "citizenship papers" to undocumented people?

We are not issuing any citizen papers to any one. Only the Federal Government can do that. The only thing that we are doing for undocumented people is to give them a recognized id that will help them get a bank account.

Question #2
Why are we wasting city money to help these people?

The funding from this project is coming 100% from a grant from the 1st Community Bank Foundation (this is the community bank created when New Haven Savings Bank went public).

As a city we feel that putting this program in to effect is important because we have a reality that needs to be dealt with. We have a population of approximately 125,000 people. Of that anywhere from 8,000 to 12,000 are undocumented. These people for the most part do not have bank accounts – they therefore carry large amounts of cash. This then makes them targets of criminals who know this and prey on them. In the past year we had 2 murders directly relegated to undocumented people being targeted for their cash. It is not good for any one documented or otherwise to have anyone targeted and attacked in the city.

In addition we hope to create a list of where these people are for in case of an epidemic or an emergency we will now have a way to reach out and control a large part of our population that we did not have in the past.

Our police back this because they never had a true idea of where a large part of the city really lived now we will have a firm idea where they live etc.

Question #3

What is the revenue to the City from:
New City debit card?
New immigrant ID card?

The cards are one in the same.

Everyone pays the $10 fee for adults and $5 for children.The $10 fee gets broken down as follows:$5 - to the city for the card (costs are staffing, equipment, etc.)$5 - on the card for the person to use as a debit card in New Haven and for the Parcsmart meters.

For the kids there is no debit component. In addition no money is given to the 1st Community Bank - the money they gave was 100% grant.
Question #4
I am not an undocumented person – what do I gain from the card?

Every Resident of New Haven will be able to use this card to:
Use our Public Libraries
Your child can have an ID that has emergency contact information along with the rest of the features.
Park for Free at the Public Beaches (now you need to show your car registration that shows you car is registered in New Haven and you will still be able to do it).
Not have to carry change when using a parking meter – you can use the debit feature.
Use your card at over 50 locations downtown. If you are a merchant and want to accept the card as well contact Kica Matos at 946-7909.

In addition to the above you can read the fact sheet from the city here.



Family Day at Beaver Pond Park

Family Day at Beaver Pond Park

Sponsored by:

The Montana Youth Wilderness Group from New Haven
Roxanne Condon
Jerry Turick
Ed Grant
Friends of Beaver Pond Park (FOBPP) Nan Bartow

Date: Saturday, July 28
Time: 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Place: Beaver Pond Park - South Pond-corner of Fournier & Crescent Streets.

Featured Events: · Food · Canoeing · Environmental Awareness-provided by the New Haven-Montana Youth Wilderness Group with the aid of URI’s Environmental Educator,Justin Pegnataro Planting with help of our URI intern,Paula Randler

10:00 onward Canoe rides with Roxanne
10:30 planting with URI intern, Paula Randler
12:-12:30 Creature Feature-show live aquatic animals and insects
1:30-2:00 Fun games

Update on 131 Colony

I just got an update on 131 Colony Road.

The Modular is going to becoming in within the next 4 weeks.

I asked about fencing and was not able to force them to put anything up.


Monday, July 23, 2007

Special WEB Meeting

Dear All:

There will be a special WEB meeting Tuesday 7/24/07 at the Sub Station on Whalley Ave. The topic will be Crime in the Neighborhood.

Due to the Tisha B'Av Fast I will not be able to attend.


FoBPP Meeting 7-25-07

Hot off the Press!

FOBPP Meeting #6 7-25-07

Hello FOBPP,
Welcome to the last Greenspace meeting of July.
We will have our sixth gardening session with Paula Randler, our Greenspace intern.

Date: Wednesday, July 25
Time: 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM

Location: Go beyond the benches at the corner of Fournier and Crescent. Then go through the second yellow gate to the Wildflower Garden near the Bowen field running track. We will plant wildflower seeds, perennials, and native grasses in our wildflower garden.

Come for the whole time. Come for a short time. Come to say hello and cheer us on.

We will do some plant, weeding and mulch. Probably the new plants will need watering.

Please bring your energy, your children, your parents, grandparents and neighbors.

Paula's work phone is 203-432-6189. My cell phone is 203-494-2529.


Monday, July 16, 2007

The Arts Council is looking for volunteers

The Arts Council is looking for volunteers to help with the hanging of photographs for its annual fundraiser "Off the Wall". The scheduled date is Saturday, August 4th at 10:00am at Studio 70, 70 Audubon Street, New Haven.

Please come whenever you can, even an hour of your time makes a difference. I can be reached at 203-772-2788 if you would like to sign up or if you have questions. Your support is greatly appreciated. If you have a hammer, please bring it with you.

(To those who have volunteered to frame, Thank You! We have had to cancel our framing night on the 18th but are still looking for people to help on July 26th from 4-7pm here at the Arts Council. Let me know if you are interested.)
Ms. Winter Marshall
The Arts Council of Greater New Haven

Friday, July 13, 2007

Democratic Ward Committee Meeting

Hi All:

There will be a Democratic 28th Ward Committee Meeting on Thursday the 19th at 6pm (sharp). I hope I can count on your support.

Thank you!


Firing Range Schedule for the next few weeks

I just got this email...

Dear Eric,

The following is the range schedule for the next two weeks. This, of course, is subject to change.

July 16 - July 20, 2007, 8:00am-3:45 pm
July 23 - July 27, 2007, 8:00am-3:45pm

If you should have any questions please feel free to contact the academy at 203.946.6309.


Academy Staff

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

State of Community Policing in New Haven Today...

Dear All:

With everything going in Police District 10 – the WEB area, I have been giving some though about the current state of Community Policing we find ourselves in now.

Our fair city is covers a wide area and a diverse social & economic range. Our ward is a good representation of this. The reality is that the lower part of the ward has different policing needs the upper part. But both parts need to have more of a police presence.

One thing I like about our ward and the WEB Management Team is the fact that overall this is a pretty intelligent group. We understand the problems and limitations that we face and the Police Department faces. Some of them are:

The fact is that the city is in the midst of a budget crisis and that we have a very generous benefit package that makes it difficult to afford to hirer more officers.

The force is down over 100 officers from the height under Nick Pastore

I have been hearing that the partnerships with the various State agencies – such as DCF – are weak and the rapport that we once had is not there

Federal grant dollars are substantially less and harder to obtain

The above leads us to the current crisis that we are now in.

Officers are getting burnt out. When an officer would rather not work the earn overtime we have a problem. Also the good and deserving officers can’t move up in the ranks or we risk even further depleting the force on the street.

With a smaller force there is no way that we can have the coverage that we once did – no ifs ands or buts.

Our partner State agencies are not as focused on us and now a large part of the NHPD’s calls are for domestic abuse cases. What used to be dealt with by DCF or other agency is now falling on the shoulders of our cops.

When we used to get many millions of dollars in direct and indirect grants from the Federal Government under COPS and other such programs what few thousand dollars we do get we are happy for

The question now is what can we expect from our Police Department and Chief of Police. I want to know what you think. Please post a comment to or email me at

Yours in service,

Moti Sandman

Monday, July 9, 2007


Hi All:

There will be a special WEB Meeting Tuesday July 10th at the Whalley Avenue sub station at 7pm. CAO Robert Smuts & Chief Ortiz will be there to hear and discuss community concerns about community policing. I hope to see you there!


Friday, July 6, 2007

Executive Pay Scale

Dear All:

There has been some publicity over the past few weeks about the Executive Pay Scale increase that the Finance Committee passed in its last meeting. I sit on that committee and will lay out why we increased the scale.

The short reason is that we (the City) are not paying market rate wages for a number of executive positions. It is understood that government is usually under what the privet sector pays but we are so low that some subordinates (in the 3144 municipal workers union) are higher paid then their supervisors. We will not attract the best and brightest that we need and want to work for the City. Or they will stay a short while work up the resume and take off to richer waters. Below are some facts and figures that really outline the above.

The range increases being reflected have nothing to do with pay increases. These increases total 16% and mirror the increases of the 3144 contract

The Administration is committed to limiting the total amount of all salary increases to no more than 3.15%, or the same increase as 3144 received last July 1st

The Administration has not asked for range increases in the past 6 years (2001)

At the time of the last request, November 2001, the Administration sought a range increase of 15% two years after the adoption of the new salary structure

The salary structure currently in place is not keeping up with salaries in Local 3144. In one case, the department head is making less than members of his/her department. The top ten Local 3144 wages (non-BOE) are higher than 10 of the 11 attorneys working in Corporation Counsel

There are six Local 3144 individuals in Range 10, Step 10 at $80,578. At this salary, no Assistant Corporation Counsel is making a comparable salary, nor any of the Department Heads in an Exempt Range 5 or below

Salaries for the least paid members of the Executive Management fall below comparable or subordinate positions salaries in 3144. For instance, the Chief Examiner of the City is paid $63,973 – well below the $80,578 paid to the Human Resource Manager of the Police Department, a subordinate 3144 position.

Salary increases for members of Local 3144 were implemented in July ’06. At that time, 3144 members received a 3.5% increase, in July ’07 another 3.5% increase, a 3.0% increase in July of ’08, ’09, ’10.

Thanks to Paul Nunez & Tina Burgett for the facts & figures.

Free Films at New Haven Public Library

New Haven Free Public Library and the 50+ Transition Center present
Summer 2007 Health, Aging and Activism
Thursday Film Series

Thursday, July 12 at 6:30 pm: Salud!
Spanish w/English Subtitles. On location in Cuba, Gambia, South Africa, Venezuela, Honduras, USA. Directed by Connie Field. 93 min.; 2006.

¡Salud! takes a look at Cuba , a cash-strapped country that ironically enjoys what the BBC calls "one of the world's best health systems." The film tells the stories of some of the 28,000 Cuban health professionals currently serving in 68 countries, as well as some 30,000 international medical students in Cuba, including nearly 100 from the USA . ¡Salud! highlights some of the complex realities that confront the movement toward universal healthcare. A timely adjunct to Michael Moore's new film, Sicko.
Michele Barry, MD, FACP, will introduce the film. Professor of Medicine and Global Public Health at Yale University, she is the Director of Yale's Office of International Health .

July 19 at 6:30 pm: Autumn Summer (Babi Leto)

In Czech with English subtitles. Directed by
Vladimir Michalek. 95 min.; 2002.

A wry, bittersweet comedy starring the great Vlastimil Brodsky ( Closely Watched trains, Jacob the Liar ) as Fanda, an old man who refuses to grow up. Despite pleas from his exasperated wife, Emilie, and son who want him to make some serious decisions about the future, he ignores their nagging and spends his days seeking amusement and adventure.

July 26 at 6:30 pm: Forever Activists! Stories from the Veterans of Abraham Lincoln Brigade

Spain/USA. Directed by Judith Montell. 60 min.; 1991. Academy Award Best Feature Documentary Nomination.

In the late 1930s, Spain was embroiled in a civil war which prefigured the conflicts of World War II. Many idealistic young Americans rushed to join the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, to fight with the Republican side against the fascists and Nazis. While many Americans across the political spectrum supported these efforts at the time, during the McCarthy era of the late 1940s and early 1950s, the brigade was condemned because it had contained communists, and those who fought in it were blacklisted and even imprisoned.
This film explores the subsequent careers of some who fought in the Brigade. Spanish Civil War buffs will enjoy footage of La Passionaria, a prominent Republican figure in the conflict.
Jacinto Lirola will lead a discussion after the film. This will be the 3rd Year the NHFPL has screened a film regarding the Spanish Civil War.

No charge for this film series - 133 Elm Street - Details 946-7431