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HARTFORD, Conn. (April 20, 2016)This week, Moody’s Investors Service announced that it has assigned a downgraded rating to the City of Hartford. This serves as the second downgrade from the rating agency in the past 10 months. The announcement also comes on the heels of Standard & Poor’s assigning the state’s capital city with a downgraded rating last month.

“We’ve been anticipating and are not surprised by Moody’s rating downgrade,” Mayor Bronin said. “The rating agencies are looking at the same numbers we are, and we’ve been very open and transparent about Hartford’s severe fiscal challenges. This rating action should serve as one more indication that we need to tackle our challenges head-on and act quickly to make the changes necessary to get our city on a path to fiscal health.”

Moody’s noted that the City of Hartford’s outlook remains negative. The rating agency said that the negative outlook reflects its expectation that the city will remain challenged to restore and maintain fiscal stability given its limited revenue raising ability, elevated fixed cost burden, and a reliance on non-recurring revenue sources. The outlook also incorporates the city's significant reliance on state aid, which could adversely impact the city.

• Click here to read more on Moody’s credit opinion:

Despite the downgrade, the ratings agency mentioned Mayor Bronin’s FY2017 budget proposal, highlighting that it benefits from state aid, cost savings, relies on employee concessions, reductions in workforce, and various departmental cuts. In addition, Moody’s states that the proposal uses one-time measures to a lesser extent than past budgets to address operational challenges.

“None of the proposed cuts are easy,” said Mayor Bronin. “This budget makes the cuts we can responsibly make, while continuing to deliver vital services to the residents of our city. We need to get serious about finding sustainable savings.”

• Click here to read Mayor Bronin’s budget proposal for FY2017:

During his budget process, Mayor Bronin has highlighted that even with the deep cuts and substantial labor concessions included in his recommended budget, Hartford will continue to face dire fiscal challenges, including a projected deficit of at least $30 million in FY2018.

“If we are going to be a healthy city that is delivering basic city services and investing in our future, there is a limit to the cuts that can be made and there is a limit to the tax revenue our small city can support,” said Mayor Bronin. “We’re going to do everything we can to get our house in order, but we must also build a statewide and regional consensus that Hartford’s success matters to the entire state, because our looming fiscal challenges are bigger than we can overcome alone.”



Hartford, Conn. (April 26, 2016)— Today, Mayor Luke Bronin applauded the Hartford City Council for passing a resolution urging state legislators to support passage of An Act Concerning Fair Chance Employment (HB 5237). Also known as a “ban the box” measure, the bill seeks to prevent employers from requiring individual employees — or prospective employees — to disclose any criminal history until the employer has made a conditional offer of employment to such employee or prospective employee.

“When an employee is otherwise qualified, a past mistake — especially those unrelated to the nature of the job they're seeking — should not bar them from employment,” said Mayor Bronin. “This bill recognizes that past mistakes, particularly those mistakes made during youth, should not be a permanent barrier to employment. The Fair Chance Employment Act aims to strengthen Hartford’s efforts to reduce crime by promoting second chances for individuals with criminal records. The City Council’s support sends a strong message as we recognize National Reentry Week.”
Click here for more information on HB 5237:

One-in-three American adults have some criminal record, according to the Center for American Progress. And a conviction record reduces the likelihood of a follow-up interview or job offer by nearly one-half, according to the Council of State Governments.

Research shows that fair chance employment policies are also good for business. The decreased output of goods and services from those with criminal records results in an estimated $57 to $65 billion in losses to our national economy annually, according to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study.

Nationwide, more than 100 cities — including Hartford — and counties, as well as more than 20 states, have adopted “ban the box” policies to encourage employers to put a candidate’s qualifications first. At the federal level, President Barack Obama backed a “ban-the-box” policy in directing federal agencies to wait until later in the hiring process to look into job applicants’ records.

“We believe everyone deserves a second chance and a person’s prior mistakes should not automatically disqualify them from receiving an employment offer, let alone an interview,” said City Council President Thomas J. Clarke II. “Everyone should receive a fair and equal chance in obtaining a job and we hope our state lawmakers share the same sentiments.”


Traffic Advisory for Ford Street

Beginning Monday April 18th Ford Street will be closed to westbound traffic due to construction activities related to the Bushnell Park North project. Detours will be in place to route westbound traffic around the construction zone. Eastbound traffic will be maintained on Ford Street during construction. 

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