(Jan 19, 2016) Today, Mayor Luke Bronin met with senior officials in the Obama Administration to discuss opportunities for partnership with the City of Hartford in key priority areas, including criminal justice reform and reentry, engaging disengaged youth, combatting homelessness, and the use of technology to improve municipal services. Mayor Bronin was part of a small group of newly-elected mayors invited to the White House to meet with senior officials including, among others, Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President; Tina Tchen, Chief of Staff to First Lady Michelle Obama; and Shaun Donovan, Director of Office of Management.
“President Obama has made it a priority to partner with cities, and I welcomed the opportunity to discuss some of our key priorities with the President's top advisors,” Mayor Bronin said. “The President's commitment to reforming our criminal justice system, promoting second chances, combatting homelessness, and engaging disengaged young people will make a real difference in Hartford. I look forward to following up with our federal and state partners and complementing the President's efforts with concrete action at the local level here in Hartford."
Approximately ten mayors participated in this afternoon's meeting, including the mayors of Charleston, SC, Toledo, OH, Nashville, TN, and Flint, MI, among others.
In addition, Mayor Bronin met separately today with officials from the National League of Cities (NLC) Institute for Youth, Education, and Families; the Corporation for Community and National Service; and the Center for American Progress to further promote key priority areas for Hartford.
(Jan 11, 2016) Today, Mayor Luke Bronin announced that Cigna Corporation has committed to donating 35 laptops this week to replace the laptops that were stolen over the weekend from the Culinary Arts Academy at Weaver High School.
“I’m very grateful to Cigna for stepping up quickly and generously to support Hartford’s students,” Mayor Bronin said. “Digital skills are a critical component of 21st Century learning, and Cigna’s commitment today will allow for continuity of learning for our students with little disruption. I also want to commend our Hartford police officers who are working diligently to identify the suspects in this case.”
“Cigna is committed to the health and well-being of the communities in which we live and work. We know that health for children in the City of Harford often times starts with education,” said Cigna Executive Vice President and Global Chief Information Officer, Mark Boxer. “When we heard the concerning news that laptops were stolen from the Weaver Culinary School over the weekend, we knew we needed to help. Our first objective was to ensure continuity of learning ASAP. We convened our desktop support team here at Cigna to configure, prepare and ultimately donate 35 laptop computers so that students would have them before the end of the school week.”
"We are grateful to Cigna for being a committed community partner and neighbor for Hartford Public Schools and thank them for their generosity,” said Superintendent Beth Schiavino-Narvaez.
(Jan 7, 2016) Today, Mayor Luke Bronin announced that as one of his first actions as Mayor, he is joining Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a national, bipartisan coalition of mayors united in an effort to end gun violence and keep illegal guns off the streets. Earlier this week, President Obama issued a series of executive actions to address gun violence and save lives. Mayor Bronin applauds the President's leadership and actions and stands with him in the critical fight against gun violence.
“Today, I stand with mayors across the country in calling for common-sense policies to end the trafficking and possession of illegal guns on our streets,” Mayor Bronin said. “The effects of gun violence shatter families and neighborhoods. Last year, illegal guns were responsible for all gun deaths in our city. Enough is enough. President Obama rightfully took executive actions to curb gun violence, and I urge Congress to pass common-sense gun laws. As we continue to push hard for action nationally, we need to do everything we can at the city and state levels to combat gun violence and the illegal use and distribution of firearms in this region.”
In 2015, there were 26 firearm-related homicides in Hartford – all as a result of illegal guns. Mayor Bronin has heard from victims of gun violence and is committed to ending gun violence by focusing on community policing and neighborhood revitalization efforts. The Mayor has called for a Youth Service Corp to create jobs for young men and women to improve and enhance Hartford’s neighborhoods.
“As Mothers United Against Violence, we applaud the Mayor’s effort to reach out to other mayors to battle this great epidemic called gun violence in America,” said the Rev. Henry Brown, founder of the Hartford-based organization.
"Hartford moms know how important it is to have strong leaders who support common sense ideas that protect families,” said Susan Hanjian, Hartford Local Group Leader for Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. “When Moms Demand Action merged with Mayors Against Illegal Guns in 2014, we committed ourselves to working with law enforcement, faith leaders and survivors of gun violence to do whatever it takes to prevent gun violence. Today, we're proud that another important public servant has committed himself to this critically important issue and welcome Mayor Bronin to our coalition. We look forward to standing together and pursuing policies that will keep Hartford's citizens safe from gun violence."
Mayors Against Illegal Guns is a national coalition formed in 2006 by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former Boston Mayor Thomas Menino. The bipartisan coalition of more than 1,000 current and former mayors unites mayors and survivors to promote common goals including, protecting communities by holding gun offenders accountable; demanding access to crime gun trace data that is critical to law enforcement efforts to combat gun trafficking; and working with legislators to fix weaknesses and loopholes in the background check system that make it far too easy for criminals and other dangerous people to get guns.
Upon joining the coalition, Mayor Bronin signed the following statement of principles:
Whereas: 30,000 Americans across the country are killed every year as a result of gun violence – including 12,000 who are murdered – destroying families and communities in big cities and small towns; and
Whereas: As Mayors, we are duty-bound to do everything in our power to protect our residents, especially our children, from harm, and there is no greater threat to public safety than the threat of illegal guns;
Now, therefore, we resolve to work together to find innovative new ways to advance the following principles:
· Punish to the maximum extent of the law criminals who possess, use, and traffic in illegal guns.
· Target and hold accountable irresponsible gun dealers who break the law by knowingly selling guns to straw purchasers.
· Extend background check requirements to all gun sales, including the private sales that take place online and at gun shows.
· Oppose all federal efforts to restrict cities’ right to access, use, and share trace data that is so essential to effective enforcement, or to interfere with the ability of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to combat illegal gun trafficking.
· Work to develop and use technologies that aid in the detection and tracing of illegal guns.
· Support all local state and federal legislation that targets illegal guns; coordinate legislative, enforcement, and litigation strategies; and share information and best practices.
· Invite other cities to join us in this new national effort.
(Jan 4, 2016) Today, Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin was sworn in as the 67th Mayor of the City of Hartford during the first official meeting of the Court of Common Council. Mayor Bronin and elected officials, including the City Treasurer and City Council members, were sworn in at City Hall. The Mayor released his remarks as prepared following the City of Hartford Inauguration Ceremony.
Mayor Bronin’s Remarks as Prepared for Delivery
Thank you and congratulations, Council President Clarke. Thank you, Clerk Bazzano. Good evening and thank you to everyone who is here tonight. And to the families of those of us on the dais, a special gratitude for your sacrifices you have made and will make.
Governor Malloy, Lieutenant Governor Wyman, Mayor Milner, members of Hartford’s legislative delegation, thank you so much for being with us tonight.
Treasurer Cloud, Council President Clarke, Council members Julio Concepcion, John Gale, Glendowlyn Thames, Jimmy Sanchez, rJO Winch, Wildaliz Bermudez, Dr. Larry Deutsch, Cynthia R. Jennings.
Congratulations. I’m proud and honored to be your partner in government. To partner with you in governing in a way that is worthy of the people of Hartford.
The Courant editorial page asked yesterday if we all know what we’d gotten ourselves into. Well, I think we do. If the path ahead were easy or smooth, we wouldn’t have asked for the job.
Our challenges are big.
We begin our term facing a four million dollar deficit this current year and far more daunting deficits in the years ahead.
Too many of our neighbors can’t find a job that pays a living wage.
Too many of our young men and women feel little hope that their lives will be different.
We know those things, but we also know the resilience, the perseverance, and the greatness of this city.
We know the power of our diversity, our arts and cultural assets that should be the envy of cities far larger than ours, our businesses small and big, our beautiful parks, our history.
And because we know what Hartford can be, we will not be paralyzed by challenges, but emboldened by them. We will not be afraid of tough choices or of change.
Our aspiration is to build a Hartford that once again is the undisputed economic and cultural heart of this region of a million and a half people; and a Hartford in which every resident feels that they’ve got a share in Hartford’s rise.
It won’t happen overnight. But if we come together as one Hartford, it will happen.
To the residents of Hartford: you put your trust in us. We will honor that trust with transparency, with accountability, and with tireless hard work.
We can’t do it alone. Whether you put some new paint on your home, plant a new garden, mentor a friend or neighbor, form a block watch, join your NRZ — in whatever way feels right to you, join us and put your shoulder to the wheel. This is your city, and your city needs you.
To the hundreds of thousands of people who have your roots in Hartford, but no longer call our city home: come home to Hartford.
Whether you’re in Windsor or Bloomfield, Wethersfield or West Hartford, come back and rediscover this city – come to live, come for Sunday Jazz or a UCONN game and stay for dinner, come in for some jerk chicken on North Main or some pasteles in Parkville.
Come home to Hartford and be part of a city’s rebirth, because Hartford cannot succeed without the region. And this region cannot thrive without a vibrant Hartford at its heart.
If we come together as one city, one region; if we’re not afraid to make tough choices; if we’re not afraid of change, we will build Hartford into the great city we know it will be.
And when we face stormy days, as we surely will, we’ll look to the pins on our lapels. Post Nubila Phoebus. That’s Hartford’s Latin motto. After the clouds, the sun.
A motto we now proudly wear, of a city we now proudly serve.
Thank you to all of you here tonight. Congratulations to the Court of Common Council.
And God bless the City of Hartford.