Malloy says local union rejection vote jeopardizes Hartford bailout

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH)–Despite the state budget troubles, Governor Malloy has pledged to help the city of Hartford and 14 other distressed communities. But tonight, the Governor says help for the City of Hartford is in jeopardy because the largest city labor union has overwhelmingly rejected a concession deal.

Governor Malloy says he is still hopeful of reaching a concession deal with the state labor unions, but he is lashing out tonight at a municipal union in Hartford that has overwhelmingly rejected a concession deal needed by the Capital City.

“If labor doesn’t honor it’s commitments, it would be very difficult to help Hartford,” said the Governor today.

The city of Hartford has a $50 million deficit and is expecting enough aid in the new state budget to bail them out so they can avoid bankruptcy. 

On Friday Malloy asked, “Why would we ask the people of Connecticut to contribute to Hartford’s welfare if the people who’ve already made a promise to do that aren’t willing to keep it?”

The Hartford firefighters union has made real concessions in order to help the city out, but the largest union, the AFSCME local, representing 400 blue and white collar workers, voted down a concession package by a more than three to one margin.

The Governor’s point is that getting lawmakers from across the state to vote to help Hartford as part of a state budget deal just got a lot harder.  

Mayor Luke Bronin (D-Hartford) agreed, saying, “We have to convince a legislature that includes Representatives from all around the state. I think it is simply a fact that those legislators are going to expect our unions to come to the table in a real way and be part of the solution.”

In a statement, Kenneth Blue, the President of Local 1716 said: “We are assessing the next steps to take. We want to protect the vital services our members provide Hartford residents and
businesses.”

Almost everyone at the Capitol has said that if the Capitol City were to file for bankruptcy, it would a big black eye for the entire state of Connecticut.

Public relations-wise, maybe even worse than the loss of G.E.

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