May 1, 2009

City GOP chief blasts Ward

Press release from city Republican Party Chairman T.J. Barnes:

Today Art Ward announced that he wanted to cut the Mayor’s Salary and the council’s salary by 5 percent as a cost cutting move in light of today’s economic hard times.  This very idea was suggested by Ken Cockayne, Cliff Block, and Kevin Mccauley back in March; Art Ward voted no to the idea and instead wanted a wage freeze.  Then on the day he officially announces his candidacy for Mayor he changes his mind and decides that he would like to call for a wage cut of 5 percent. 

While the idea of cutting wages of the elected officials when you are asking for the same concessions from the workers is a sign of leadership.  What was wrong with the idea back in March?  Was it because it wasn’t his idea?  Does the idea now help him get re-elected?  Doing what is good to get yourself re-elected is not leadership.  Stealing ideas from people and then claiming them as your own is not leadership.  Leadership is coming up with your own ideas, regardless of how they affect your personal ability to get re-elected. 

This is on top of negotiating new contracts with the City Unions and then 6 months later asking for concessions from those very Unions.  This economy has been in Recession since the summer of 2007 and we have known that the state budget deficit was going to be at record levels for quite some time, but why did the mayor not take that in to consideration when he negotiated new contracts?   The Mayor needs to show actual leadership and not just political leadership and flipping positions on issues for political reasons is not leadership.


Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at


Anonymous said...

Well like I stated early - he ONLY came out with this to get re-elected. Ward voted NO before why the change of heart? VOTES - he wants your vote.
Ward you have my vote - voting you out.

Anonymous said...

Ward wanted to please his Union Buddies, then when poop hit the fan, he had to back-pedal. You are correct Mr. Barnes - Ward is not a leader.

Anonymous said...

Yep - here is the article:

BRISTOL — Mayor Art Ward is calling for a wage freeze for the city’s elected leaders.

“It’s symbolic in nature, to say the very least,” Ward said Thursday.

Ward said the Salary Committee, a three-person panel chaired by city Councilor Frank Nicastro, should consider the idea and make a recommendation about what to do.

Ward said the freeze would hold the salaries of the mayor, city councilors and other elected officials at this year’s level during the next term of municipal office, which begins in November.

“It’s too late now to consider it for this term,” the mayor said.

The mayor currently earns $100,000 annually while the six part-time councilors earn $10,000 apiece. They serve two-year terms.

For more than a decade, the city’s elected leaders have hiked their salaries every two years to match the increases given to department heads, typically about the inflation rate.

Ward said that given the hard time that so many taxpayers are facing — and the hardships that city workers may face, too — this year should not be business as usual.

“We are entirely aware of the circumstances in the economy,” Ward said.

The mayor said the money saved wouldn’t matter that much, but as a gesture, it will help.

At least one of the city’s state lawmakers, state Rep. Bill Hamzy, a Plymouth Republican whose 78th District includes northwestern Bristol, has voluntarily taken a 5 percent cut in legislative pay.

Anonymous said...

Awwwww...poor GOP. Did the mayor step on some toes? Who cares if was suggested earlier or not?

Anonymous said...

Art, it is ILLEGAL to do it this term, or don't you know that?

Anonymous said...

The GOP wants to talk about leadership???? Give me a break!

Anonymous said...

Mayor Ward will not be re elected if taxes go up...Plain and simple. One thing the GOP is good at and that is making a very valid point when it comes to taxes...Am I right? This will be a lesson learned for the DEMS in this city if the Mayor is not elected again. Goes for all the Council people to that vote for a increase.

Anonymous said...

Haha, who cares? I'll tell you who should care: everyone who has any idea whatsoever with what he is trying to do. DEMOCRATS Cliff Block and Kevin Mccauley suggested this. Republican Ken Cockayne supported it, and Bill Hamzy actually took a 5% cut already. Yet when the idea was initially proposed, the mayor wanted nothing to do with it. Now a couple months later, under the same hard times, the mayor suggests a 5% cut instead. He is playing the people of Bristol as fools. Don't be one of them come election day!

Anonymous said...

Ward is not who he appears to be. Soon it will call come out - right Wardie Boy?

staus quo said...

the bristol gop ignorance is alive and well; thank you, at least we can be assured that you will have an excuse for failure in november.

missing in action said...

this is from tj barnes?
this is from someone who leads a party which allowed a self-centered, non-producing know-it-all to be it's standard bearer for over 2 years, only to be stumped on 6 months before the next election - what else needs to be said? keep it clean.

Concerned Conservative said...

The Democrat Party AKA the party of the public employee unions have a big advantage in Bristol. It's the 2.5:1 voter registration advantage.

Unfortunately the majority of the people have no ties to these special interest groups. But for some reason many are more favorable to supporting the union party instead of what they think is the party of the affluent (GOP).

It's good though that Barne$ Jr. is finally acting like a town chairman.

Anonymous said...

Hey Hamzy lover. We all know who that is , why don't you ask him how much of a cut he took in his LAW practice? Who's playing politics with taxpayers money? Must be nice to make what he makes . That's why he can take a cut. When he voted against the pay raise for himself he had three good paying jobs. Who's the real hypocrite? Republicans of course. But they think people are too stupid to call them out.

Anonymous said...

Why doesn't Barnes and the other republican Mucky Mucks address real issues: the budget and the games being played, the falling behind on the infrastructure, the failure to properly inform teh public on key issues.

Where are they on items of substance???

And they want to get elected?

Anonymous said...


So, he thought it over and changed his mind, BFD! He's not the first man to ever do that (didn't Ken Johnson just do that too?). If changing his mind and upping the ante is the worst thing he's done, I think the voters can live with it.


Embarrassed for you said...

"Ward is not who he appears to be"

...he's a bird? A plane? No wait! He's the man of steel, superman!

(and you 7:55? Who is this anonymous bad-mouthing blogger? Bet you're not who you appear to be either!)


Concerned Conservative said...


Attorney fees are not inexpensive. However the fees Hamzy charges are practically irrelevent because our tax money doesn't pay for them.

Unlike your pension from New Departure which is a recipient of a tax-payer bail-out.

no plan in sight said...

republicans - where have they been since all of this economic mess became apparent?
that's right, almost forgot, the republicans are immune to recessions, they just keep making money - off of us.

Anonymous said...


Remember, Ward, and others were given a heads up by Stortz over 18 months ago, and Ward did nothing.

Stortz also suggested that Ward seek input and ideas as how he might cut costs, and so far I have not heard that Ward has utilized or requested any input from the public.

Diseased said...

8:19 - hey idiot, break down and subscribe to the Bristol Press, watch Nutmeg TV instead of the cartoon channel or get off your dead butt and exercise your brain by going to a city council meeting if you are so behind on the news.
By the way, if you decide to walk to the city council meeting, take your foot out of your mouth before hand so that you won't have to limp.

AnonymousWestconnStudent said...



Calling the Democratic Party the party of Unions is like calling the GOP the party of redneck, Southern, religious nutjobs.

Oh wait...

And you're right Lawyers don't get their fees paid for by tax payers.

They do however get set by a bar association made up of their peers. There's that free market working for people again.

And tell someone trying to apply for Bankruptcy that lawyers fees are practically irrelevant.

Concerned Conservative said...

Ward's a political animal and a politcial hack but at least he's not a screw ball like most of the GOP candidates have been since

Anonymous said...

Hey Ward - what happened to your girlfriend?

Concerned Conservative said...


So you see unions at one end of the spectrum and "redneck nutjobs" on the other end?

Hmmm...sounds like a fascinating political science lesson you've conceived.

Here's some advice: Take a break and get a clue.

AnonymousWestconnStudent said...

See, I'm not the one who sees unions on one end of the spectrum.


So why shouldn't I in response see the Republican party as "redneck nutjobs"

Nationally they have been reduced to a regional, predominantly Southern party.

Making assumptions on both ends is just ridiculous.

So maybe you should watch yourself before you paint all Democrats with the same brush.

Take a break and get a clue...

Go F-yourself!

Anonymous said...

Looks like Mr. Barnes has gone back into the woodwork.

Anonymous said...

Nope, just getting the dirt on Ward, and there is plenty of it.