Saturday, September 06, 2008
Time: 8:58 AM

Don't bother showing up...

HatCityBLOG EXCLUSIVE: Common Council film festival debate

Friday, September 05, 2008
Time: 7:31 PM

From the September Common Council meeting, here's (unedited) is the debate on the funding of the film festival.

In a later post, I'll show how those who supported the film festival either had no idea what the hell they were talking about during the debate, or (more disgracefully) should be roundly criticized for sitting there like a dear in headlights (cue seventh ward Boughton-rubber stamper/racist email contributor Mary Teicholtz) and not speaking in favor or against funding the festival.

NOTE: I've been bombarded with emails from many very angry residents about this issue and asking what could they do to express their displeasure. I'm working on addressing this issue soon.

As a person who's been effected by the rising cost of living in Danbury, I feel your pain and frustration. After viewing this video, and the dismissive nature of Minority Leader Tom Saadi's fiscally responsible amendment, I'm expecting the outrage to rise.

Murphy's latest TV ad

Time: 6:26 PM

On the airwaves...

Cappiello's minute of fame: Report from inside the convention

Time: 4:44 PM

This just about sums Cappiello's "deer in the headlights while attempting to read from a teleprompter" speech last night.

A dozen Connecticut delegates, including Lt. Gov. Michael C. Fedele, State Chair Chris Healy and Rob Simmons were on hand to congratulate him. About the half the seats in the state delegation, however, were empty.

Yeah, that just about sums things up from the campaign that steals people's work. Now, onto the Galante state court case!

Anger mounts

Time: 4:16 PM

Seems like parents are REALLY PISSED OFF with the board of ed and Schools Superintendent Sal Pascarella over the god-awful performance of Student Transportation of America.

Now, the News-Times chimes in and it's not pretty.
School has been open for a week and STA just can't get it right. Buses are late or just don't show up. Students are left waiting for late buses on the street and at schools. Classes are disrupted by late-arriving students. Parents are having their own work schedules disrupted and also are worried about the safety of their children -- with reason.

All STA offers are excuses and promises. Not enough drivers. Unfamiliar routes. We'll get better. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe next week.


The superintendent also has indulged in excuses and promises. A contract change, after being with one bus company for 18 years, should have come with concrete performance assurances. Pascarella obviously didn't get them.

The school board voted for the change, except for one member, Joan Hodge, who questioned whether STA could perform as promised.

The board and Pascarella meant well in trying to save money, but meaning well is not enough. In addition, more should have been done to ensure STA was ready for the first day of school. When it wasn't, the board and superintendent should not have been so passive as they watched what was being done to students, parents and teachers.

STA has failed to meet its contractual obligations, disrupted the education of students and endangered their safety. Will STA be held accountable?
Will parents hold the board and Pascarella accountable?

Quote of the night

Thursday, September 04, 2008
Time: 10:54 PM

Now that he's done, can someone turn to the f*cking Giants game!

A bar patron's reaction to David Cappiello's "this is my first time reading from a teleprompter" speech at Cappiello's watch party at Rosy Tomorrows.

I'll give my first-hand account of what happened when I popped up at Cappiello's party at Rosy's later.

HatCityBLOG EXCLUSIVE: Film festival ad-hoc committee meeting

Time: 10:30 PM

The amount of outraged emails I've received over the film festival is surprising even to me. Many people seem extremely upset that the city is forking over 65,000 for this festival while at the same time closing the library in order to "cut expenses" and "save taxpayer's dollars."

Since people have requested that I post the complete video footage of last month's ad-hoc committee meeting, here it is in it's "almost" entirety. I say almost because I missed about 7 minutes of the meeting due to traffic.

Those in attendance included ad-hoc committee chairman Mike Caladrino, ad-hoc committee members Charlie Trombetta and Paul Rotello. Also in attendance was Mayor Mark, Corporation Counsel Les Pinter, Finance Director David St. Hilaire, and ex-officio members (and the only person who asked a real question) Ben Chianese and Mary "didn't utter one question throughout the ENTIRE MEETING" Teicholtz. Public included City Center Danbury director Andrea GArtner, Economic Development Director (and former Publisher of the Danbury News-Times) Wayne Sheppard, and the mind behind the festival...Tom Carruthers.

Now that you know the players in this love fest of a ad-hoc meeting, watch what actually happened and see if you make sense of anything the supporters of the film festival presented in terms of their report.

More to come.

How ironic

Time: 1:22 PM

Too funny.
[James Galante attorney] Keefe also submitted letters from then-Congresswoman Nancy Johnson and Danbury state Sen. David Capiello, the Republican congressional candidate for the 5th House District, extolling Galante's contributions to the community.

I guess when a mobster bundles contributions to Cappiello's campaign gets you can expect a love letter on top of a boatload of other goodies.
In addition to federal racketeering and tax fraud charges, Galante was charged with three counts of making illegal contributions to politicians and three counts of corrupt practices under state election law. Cappiello was one of the recipients of Galante's generosity.

"The truth about Dave Cappiello's relationship with James Galante won't get locked up in the prison cell with the convicted mobster," said Carrie James, regional press secretary at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. "There's no way to hide the fact that David Cappiello has a close relationship with James Galante. Cappiello bestowed him with honors, took illegal campaign contributions and provided him with gifts in exchange."


* 2007 -- After a story broke about his PAC receiving Galante money, Cappiello lied about when he donated the money to charity. (Hartford Courant, October 13, 2007) (Associated Press State & Local Wire, October 12, 2007) (

* 2007 -- Cappiello was Against New Plans to Regulate Refuse Industry. After Galante's indictment, Cappiello opposed proposals for licensing trash haulers. (Danbury News-Times, June 12, 2007)

* 2005 -- Cappiello and DeLuca were two of just three senators to oppose a bill to expand the state's bottle bill by also letting water bottles be redeemed for deposit. A massive lobbying effort then killed the bill in the House, led by Sullivan & LeShane. While they represented the beverage industry, they were also representing Galante companies, and this bill would have hurt his bottom line by reducing municipal reliance upon curbside recycling. Sullivan & LeShane have boasted how they have defeated this expansion of the bottle bill, beginning in 1999. (Connecticut Common Cause, September 27, 2005)

* 2004 -- Cappiello Voted Against Reforming "Evergreen" Contracts. One of the abusive features of Galante's company contracts were "evergreen" clauses, which he used in Connecticut even after such contracts had been outlawed in Westchester and New York City. In 2004, Cappiello voted in Judiciary Committee against SB 399, "An Act Concerning... Automatic Renewal of Consumer Contracts." ( (New York Times, August 12, 2001)

* 2002 -- Cappiello solicited James Galante to contribute $100,000 at a Red Cross Fundraiser that raised $117,000. Cappiello and DeLuca repeatedly worked together in soliciting and honoring Galante; both were members of the "Italian-American Legislative Caucus."

* 2002 -- Cappiello took $15,000 in illegally funneled money from Galante for his State Senate PAC. Cappiello spent $202 at Danbury wine & liquor to thank Galante with "bottles of wine or champagne" (Hartford Courant, October 12, 2007) (, November 5, 2007) (Hartford Courant, October 12, 2007)

* 2002 -- Italian American Legialtive Caucus, of which Cappiello is Treasurer, gives Galante its highest award. The ceremony was held in a room off the legislative chambers, just over two years after Galante had served time in Prison for tax evasion. (Danbury News-Times, 3/29/02) (Hartford Courant, 9/19/99)

Can't wait for Galante's state/illegal campaign contribution trial to begin...

About those school buses

Time: 12:24 PM

With school back in session, Danbury grabbed headlines across the state with it's embarrassingly awful bus transportation problem.

Here's the report on the problem from WTNH.

It's almost ready

Wednesday, September 03, 2008
Time: 5:57 PM

Ms. Natale has a GREAT deal of explaining to do...a GREAT DEAL of explaining...

Comical at best...

Time: 2:21 PM

The ad-hoc committee Film Festival love fest was a treat to see...
Ad hoc committee, City Hall

...that's the only term I can use to describe the ad-hoc committee formed to look at the results of the Connecticut Film Festival.

For now, lets just skip over the load of mumbled nonsense that was projected at this meeting and just focus on one critical point THAT WAS NOT REPORTED IN THE MEDIA.

After everyone was just gushing over the festival (while completely ignoring the numerous PROBLEMS with the festival, Councilman Ben Chianese brought up a point with organizer Tom Carruthers that was on my mind from the beginning of the meeting.

B.C.: Last year, according to the numbers, you spent 104 thousand dollars...according to this report, 104,257 dollars. Now the city gave you 75,000 dollars which is about 75 percent of your budget. What other revenues did you receive? Did you make money on the show?

T.C.: There were some ticket sales, some very small sponsorships?

B.C.: Can you give us a listing of what income you had.

T.C.: I don't have that listing of that with me? But I was...

B.C.: Can you provide a copy of that?

T.C.: ...when I was doing this reporting to the ad-hoc committee on the 75,000 spent, so I'm not really prepared for that, and I'm not sure of that part of my reporting to the ad-hoc committee.

Now the defensive tone from the supporters of the festival towards Chianese's question is ridiculous on so many levels that it's laughable.

Remember, The Connecticut Film Festival is a "for profit" venture that's using taxpayer's funds in order to do the event. Since it's using taxpayer dollars for a venture that's not a non-profit enterprise, the public has a right to a full accounting of the film festival activity...PERIOD.

The argument being made in this clip that the city is gave money to Carruthers ONLY to promote the festival is the same argument that was made when the festival was being pitched to the Common Council. Think about it, would ANY city continue to fund a festival that was not successful? Based on the logic in the clip, the city is ONLY interested in whether or not the money given to the festival was used correctly...which again, makes no sense because you KNOW the success of the festival was part of the decision making in funding it for another year.


Mayor Boughton's equating the funding of the film festival to giving money to a contractor to pave a road doesn't pass the smell test and is insulting to anyone who has a clue.

I'll have more on what happened at the meeting (including video footage of the entire meeting) later.

Now that the federal case is over...

Time: 2:12 PM

...we can finally get to the STATE CASE.

Anywhere between September 15th and early October, we'll FINALLY get more details about the illegal bundled campaign contributions Galante made to Mayor Mark "I had no idea" Boughton, Dave "I had no idea" Cappiello and former State Senator Lou DeLuca.

Remember, it's as simple as following the money trail...

HatCityBLOG FLASHBACK: Pitching the festival

Time: 1:52 PM

In order to have a full understanding of the festival, back in March of this year, the local access show Ideas at Work and Beyond did a interview with the organizers of the Connecticut Film Festival to talk about the event.

For those who missed it, here's the show in it's entirety.

HatCityBLOG FLASHBACK: Opening night film festival report

Time: 12:39 PM

In the promoting and hyping of the film festival, one of the sales pitches from the organizers was the economic impact the event would have on businesses downtown. On opening night, I thought it would be interesting to visit the businesses that line White, Ives, and Main Street and see first-hand the so-called economic impact that went largely ignored by the media.

This video presentation was originally posted on Friday May 23rd.

Will the 75,000 dollar investment be worth it?

Will there really be over 5,000 people attending the films?

Will the festival bring in the projected revenue for the area as promised?

Since word that the Common Council was prepared to fork over 75,000 to the organizers of the Connecticut Film Festival, I thought it would be important to keep a CLOSE eye on the success of the event.

You see, I have a problem what the media in our area. If you look at the list of organizations sponsoring the festival, you'll notice such media outlets as The News-Times, Fairfield County Weekly, and Tribuna. Now, with that being the case, it's logical to assume that they won't do much in terms of monitoring the success of the festival when it comes to holding the organizers accountable for the promises they gave to the city (i.e., revenue the festival would bring into the city, numbers of people attending the event, etc).

FOR INSTANCE, watch this report on the festival from FOX-61.

Okay, with that in mind and remembering that the city was told that this event would people in aprox. 5,000 over the course of the entire event, which would result in people eating, drinking, and partying downtown (a.k.a. spend money in downtown businesses), take a look at MY footage from opening night. Make sure to check the footage of all the restaurants on Ives, White, and Main Street.

NOTE: The footage of downtown businesses was shot at various times from 8 pm until 11:30 pm.

Get the point (and to note: a good portion of people who were at the Palace that night were affiliated with City Hall, or the event in some capacity). It's almost like the two videos were shot in different cities. Mind you, this was opening night...a night that would probably attract the largest number of people to a screening.

Again, was the 75,000 dollars the city put into this festival a good investment? We'll soon find out as I'm just getting started.


All about the film festival

Time: 10:34 AM

Okay, okay, okay, I'll get back to blogging...

On tonight's common common agenda, the organizers of the Connecticut Film Festival are requesting 65,000 from the city in order to host the event next year.

Today, I'm going to examine everything surrounding the festival that's gone overlooked by the media and supporters of the festival who are currently ignoring the numerous problems with the event as well as the public disapproval of taxpayers money being used in this manner.

From statements made by the organizers towards the common council last year, to the very questionable reporting of the festival in the media, hopefully in shedding light on everything that's been said about this event, people should question why Mayor Boughton and the Republican-controlled Common Council are basically selling the people of Danbury a bag of goods.

...more to come.

Communty Forum 08.29.08 broadcast

Tuesday, September 02, 2008
Time: 7:33 PM

Guest: John Gogliettino
Guest Joe DaSilva Jr. Chairman Danbury Democratic Town Committee

Chris Shays: out of touch with reality

Time: 12:04 PM

Unlike the childish garbage we saw from the train wreck of a candidate who's currently Chris Murphy, in showing what a real web ad should look like, the Jim Himes campaign released a hard-hitting piece today that goes to the nails Chris Shays for statements he made yesterday on the Brian Lehrer show.

Let's just say that Congressman Shays is completely out of touch with reality...

Back in town

Time: 11:23 AM I tired.

Had an amazing time at the US Open but three days of the sun beating down on me has taken it's toll and I'm exhausted.

Playing a bit of catch-up so it's going to take a little while until I start posting again. In the meantime, lets take a quick look back at the Bush Administration's response to the Katrina disaster and how a certain event at the US Open is connected to the whole affair.

I'll be back soon at full throttle.

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The Mercurial (RIP)
Danbury News Times
Danbury Patch
Danbury Hamlet Hub
Danbury Daily Voice
Tribuna Newspaper
CT News Junkie
CT Capitol Report

10.03.18 (PDF):
"Approval of Danbury Prospect Charter School"

10.30.20 (HatCityBLOG VID): Charter School discussion during 2020 interview with Julie Kushner

2018 (RADIO): WLAD
"State Board of Ed signs off on Danbury charter school proposal"

08.20 (VID): CT-LEAD
"Stand up for Education Justice" Rally

08.20.20 (OP-ED): KUSHNER: "Charter schools are not ‘magic bullet’ to improving Danbury schools"

09.13.20 (OP-ED): CHAPMAN
Candidate for state Senate supports charter school for Danbury

01.15.21 (VID): CT-LEAD
Danbury Prospect Charter School press conference

03.19.21 (OP-ED): CT MIRROR
"Danbury leaders do not want a charter school"

04.01.21 (OP-ED): CT-LEAD:
"Why did Sen. Kushner vote against us?"

05.06.21 (VID): Danbury rally to fully fund public schools

10.07.21 (VID): Danbury City-Wide PTO "Meet the Candidates" education forum

10.07.21 NEWSTIMES
Danbury candidates quarrel over charter school, education funding

01.10.22 NEWSTIMES
"New operator named for Danbury charter school: ‘I’m a huge advocate for parent choice’"

01.10.22 NEWSTIMES
"Some Danbury Democrats ‘open minded’ about charter school after new, CT operator named"

01.21.22 (OP-ED): CT MIRROR
"Lessons from Danbury: Ending the dual process for charter school approval"

02.09.22 NEWSTIMES
"Proposed Danbury charter school won’t open in 2022, governor leaves funding out of budget"

02.18.22 NEWSTIMES:
Danbury residents plead for charter school funds in 9-hour state budget hearing: ‘Just exhausted’

03.05.22 (LTE):
Time has come for Danbury charter school

03.12.22 (OP-ED): TAYLOR
"Why I am excited about the Danbury Charter School"

03.16.22 (LTE):
"Why a Danbury Charter School?"

04.02.22 CT EXAMINER:
"Crowding and a Lack of Options for Danbury Students, But No Agreement on Solutions"

04.04.22 (OP-ED): DCS
"Danbury Charter School plans debut"

04.07.22 (PODCAST): (CEA)

04.18.22 (VID): CT-LEAD
Protest press conference

04.25.22 (RADIO): WSHU
Latino group call on Connecticut lawmakers to open a Danbury charter school

06.03.22 (OP-ED): KUSHNER:
"Career Academy ‘a great deal for Danbury"

On September 26, 2007, ten plaintiffs filed suit in response to an arrest of aday laborers at a public park in Danbury, Connecticut. Plaintiffs amended their complaint on November 26, 2007.

The amended complaint states that plaintiffs sought to remedy the continued discriminatory and unauthorized enforcement of federal immigration laws against the Latino residents of the City of Danbury by Danbury's mayor and its police department.

Plaintiffs allege that the arrests violated their Fourth Amendment rights and the Connecticut Constitution because defendants conducted the arrests without valid warrants, in the absence of exigent circumstances, and without probable cause to believe that plaintiffs were engaged in unlawful activity. In addition, plaintiffs allege that defendants improperly stopped, detained, investigated, searched and arrested plaintiffs. Plaintiffs also allege that defendants violated their Fourteenth Amendment rights when they intentionally targeted plaintiffs, and arrested and detained them on the basis of their race, ethnicity and perceived national origin. Plaintiffs raise First Amendment, Due Process and tort claims.

Plaintiffs request declaratory relief, damages and attorneys fees.



Danbury Area Coalition for the Rights of Immigrants v.
U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security
3:06-cv-01992-RNC ( D. Conn. )

(02.25.08) Court docket

(10.24.07) Memorandum in Opposition to Defendant's Emergency Motion for Protective Order

(09.26.07) Press Release

(12.14.06) Complaint

Barrera v. Boughton, No. 07-01436
(D. Conn. filed Sept. 26, 2007)

(02.25.08) Court Docket

Amended complaint

Defendants' Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction

Defendants' Motion to Dismiss State Law Claims

Plaintiffs' Opposition to Motion to Dismiss

Order on Motion to Dismiss

Defendants' Answer to Amended Complaint

NEW HAVEN REGISTER: Immigrant's 2006 arrest was flawed Danbury mayor testifies

(10.05.07 (VIDEO) Boughton mislead the public about Danbury's involvement in raid

(09.18.07) Yale Law Students expose Danbury involvement in raid

(12.14.06) VIDEO: Interview with Yale Law Students at FOI presser

(12.14.06) VIDEO: Danbury 11 FOI complaint media roundup

City Clerk Jean Natale standing next to skinhead sparks outrage

(10.03.06) VIDEO: Danbury 11 rally

(09.29.06) VIDEO: Danbury 11 case deepens

Word of raid spread across the country

(09/29/06) VIDEO: Danbury 11 protest news conference

(09/29/06) Immigrant newspaper "El Canillita" gives best account of ICE day labor raid at Kennedy Park

trans_button Santos Family Story
VIDEO: Tereza Pereira's ordeal with ICE agents

VIDEO: Danbury Peace Coalition Immigration Forum (April 2006)
featuring Mayor Boughton and Immigration attorney Philip Berns

VIDEO: 2007 Stop the Raids immigration forum at WCSU

2007: Community protest anti-immigration forum

A tribute to Hispanic Center Director and immigrant activist Maria Cinta Lowe



11.15.23 Recanvass return
(Head Moderator Return Format)

11.07.23: Election night returns
(Head Moderator Return Format)

11.07.23: Initial returns

Oct 10 2022
Jan 10 2023
Apr 10 2023
Jul 10 2023
Oct 10 2023

Apr 10 2023
Jul 10 2023
Oct 10 2023

Dem/GOP slate/ballot position

VIDEO: DRTC convention
VIDEO: DDTC conveniton


(VID) DDTC nomination convention
(PDF) DDTC campaign slate flyer

(VID) DRTC nomination convention
(PDF) DRTC campaign slate flyer

(VID) 2021 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum

First quarter
Alves Apr 10th SEEC filing

Second quarter
Alves Jul 10th SEEC filing
Esposito Jul 10th SEEC filing

Third quarter
Alves Oct 12th SEEC report
Esposito Oct 12th SEEC report

Alves "Jan 6th" attack mailer 10.21.21
Esposito "you can't trust Alves" attack mailer 10.20.21
Alves mailer 10.20.21
Alves mailer 09.30.21
Esposito mailer 09.28.21
Alves mailer 09.27.21
Esposito mailer 09.27.21


Danbury 2005 election results
Newstimes Dean Esposito profile (10.25.05)

Danbury 2007 election results
(VID) Helana Abrantes TV ad
(VID) BRT tax deferral presser
(VID) Helena Abrantes "Community Forum" interview

Danbury 2009 election results
(VID) 2009 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum
(VID) 2009 Danbury Chamber of Commerce mayoral debate
(VID) 2009 DDTC nomination convention

Danbury 2011 election results
(VID) Saadi/Nero campaign kickoff

Danbury 2013 election results
(VID) 2013 DDTC nominaiton convention

Danbury 2015 election results

Danbury 2017 election results
(VID) Al Almeida concession speech
(VID) 2017 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum
(VID) Al Almeida nomination acceptance speech

Danbury 2019 election results
(VID) 2019 NewsTimes Editorial Board interview with Mark Boughton and Chris Setaro
(VID) 2019 Danbury City-Wide PTO educational forum
(VID) 2019 Danbury Chamber of Commerce mayoral debate
(VID) 2019 convention endorsement speeches from Mark Boughton and Chris Setaro