As it must, fall came last week, honey bunch. Already some trees are starting to show color, the squirrels are scampering around all the acorns on the ground, and Cobina’s allergies are running rampant until the first frost. So, it must be October! Things in these parts are perty calm right now, but we don’t expeck that they’ll stay that way very long. Last time there was a theme runnin’ through our missive, and it was “controversy.” Well, effen this missive is gonna have a theme, a body would have to put it as “rumors.”
Sweetie pie, when it comes to the political classes in this burg, the rumor is the mother’s milk of the political process. The whole system thrives on what is bein’ reported by whom about what. As we get closer to the midterm elections, which will include national personae setch as the purple-haired and always looney Mrs. Stanley (Rosa DeLauro) Greenberg, things start to refocus almost immediately to next year, and the next election. And boy, are the rumors flying. We’ll git to those chirpings in a bit, but first more rumors about the all-but-dead Haven Project.
Now, it’s been about a month since the bottom fell outta the city’s story that it was negotiating with the Simon Group – the project developers – over a timetable for completion. That cat was let outta the bag by none other than Dorinda Borer, the rep from the 115th assembly districk. I don’t like to impose emotions or motives on people as a rule, but one almost got the impression that there was a tetch of glee in making that announcement.
Whilst some people seem to think otherwise, the relationship betwixt Mrs. Borer and Mrs. Rossi has been somewhat akin to Mrs. Hatfield and Mrs. McCoy at times. Other times they seem to tolerate each other as they hafta work together on certain things. Still, Cobina wasn’t the only one who thought putting the kibosh on the Haven fantasy was a mirthful exercise for the legislator.
Tennyrate, Sammy Bluejay came in t’other afternoon and was regaling Cobina with the stories that are going around concerning the Haven site. Remember, the story now is property is gonna be complete leveled and the land sold – again, the rumor is the price is somewhere between $43 million and $45 million. No confirmation, but that is the story that almost anybody who circulates around City Hall is saying behind the scenes.
Then there are the rumors concerning who will purchase the property. Those have been spotty, but the most prevalent story is that some producer is seeing the location as a great studio location. That would be a nice thing – an actual taxpayer-type looking to purchase land and do something with it, what a thought!
Sammy sez also that people are wondering why in blazes it’s taking sooooo darned long to open up lower Main Street and Water Street so traffic can flow a bit better.
It’s been more than a month since the Police Commish gave its go-ahead on the plan. All that needs be done is open the fence at one end and git rid o’ the Jersey barrier at t’other. Things in the town take so danged long.
Now, back to the other stories flying about the city, and most concerning City Hall, or as we like to call it, the Actors Colony. It ain’t a secret that the last 15 months or so have not been kind to Mayor Nancy Rossi. Since the federal fund embezzlement story broke last summer, there have been a slew of things that have not broken the right way for the administration. The most recent is this Haven thing – a big disappointment after so many years, and not necessarily her problem, but she is manning the bridge on rhis ship. Things were shown to be bad when Rossi won by an ostensible 30-plus votes over Barry Cohen in an election that is still wending its way through the courts.
Since that time, the former head of the state Democratic Party has come down hard on the administration for the giving of bonuses with COVID money, there was an audit of how the city handles those kopecks and others, what was thought a slam-dunk development at the former Savin Rock Conference Center is now heading to court, politicos are now starting to distance themselves, and MARB has taken over the city in a Tier IV receivership, virtually taking the finances outta the hands of the elected leaders, and now we have a complaint about a missing Ethics compliance document. Thing jest keep piling up.
Soooo, what happens when things git bad? The rumors start. Now there is speculation Herroner might not seek a fourth term. We ain’t putting much stock in it, but when these things start they take on a life o’ their own. How do we know this? The names of people who might seek the nomination are starting to become part of the conversation. And the names are plenty. Effen Mrs. Rossi does determine she’ll leave the thoid floor, the number o’ people who might seek the nomination could go into the double digits. That would be quite a primary season, don’tcha think?
Meanwhile, effen the GOP can find it within itself to stop bickering and start working together, it might jest find itself in a 1980-style situation, where the public has had enuff o’ the Demmies and are looking elsewhere. But the GOP not bickering amongst the membership is a big “if” if there ever was one.
Soooo, you can see that things are percolating for 2023 some 13 months before things will be decided. That means it might be an interesting spring and summer. I don’t know about yew, hon, but I don’t wanna think that far ahead.
Nelly Nutch visited and said that the New England Brewing Company (NEBCO) projeck is going according to how things move in these parts. A projeck is proposed. It seems to go along swimmingly, and then the thing hits a sandbar. In this case, the sandbar seems to be the Land Trust of West Haven, Inc., and Jimmies. Both have filed suit against the project jest as the City Council approved a 60-year lease on the municipally owned property.
Of course, the problem for the Land Trust is the proposal itself, which it believes will obliterate some of the vistas down by the shore, and cut down on open space. How this is gonna affeck the project is anyone’s guess. We can see this becoming another situation where a developer kind of throws up his hands, and walks away. Yew hafta admit, sometimes we are our own woist enemy.
Now, Cobina does have a concern about the Savin Rock Museum artifacts becoming a “display” in the lobby of the new edifice. We’d like to see a more permanent and respectful home for those items. The whole idea that they’ll only be available to paying customers of the public house is a bit disconcerting. Still, it may not come to that if this thing slogs along in the court system for an extended period o’ time.
Then there is the problem about Beach Street. As yew remember, the former Chick’s property was purchased about a year ago, and we hear that the former Debonair Motel tract has been gobbled up – finally! Well, that section of Beach Street is up for a rebuild with the roadbed getting a lift of seven feel to prevent flooding, and to protect the infrastructure that’s under the street. That was supposed to happen, and hasn’t yet. There have been some delays, and that hasn’t made the new owners and potential owners very happy. Like I said above, getting things done in a timely fashion around here is not something that happens often.
And to cap it off, the Wag was in here last week and wondered out loud whatever happened to the Enterprise Zone that was soooo ballyhooed in this papyrus and others jest before Christmas two years ago. The EZ is set up for the Front Avenue-Spring Street area along the West River.
Since the state approved it, nary a thing has been heard. It is supposed to be a bio-tech, medical research-type area. That’s all well and good, but it don’t seem like anyone is interested in putting something in that area. Same story: a lotta hype, a big announcement and then….crickets. Yew can list the number of big announcements made in the last 15 years and see that little – if anything – has been done, from the “law school” at the former Armstrong property, to the Arts Center on Center Street to any number o’ things. Things jest don’t change.
With that bit o’ chatter, I’ll close this time till next, mitt luff und kizzez,