(January 16, 2014) Today, the City Council Committee of Inquiry, formed by Mayor Pedro E. Segarra and City Council President Shawn Wooden, released the findings of its investigation into Election Day irregularities. The Committee determined that several polling places did not open for voting at 6 a.m., as required by law, and found several other irregularities by the Head Moderator and the Hartford Registrars. As a result, the final vote for the November 4, 2014 Election Day remains unclear.
The report concludes that the Registrar of Voters:
· Failed to provide the Secretary of State with information about the polling place moderators;
· Failed to timely prepare and deliver the final registry books by 8 p.m. on November 3, 2014;
· Failed to develop or implement a plan for delivering the books to the polling places before the polls opened at 6 a.m. on November 4, 2014;
· Failed to adequately prepare and open several polling places and to identify and correct discrepancies in the vote tallies reported by the Head Moderator.
The Committee’s findings attribute many of the problems on Election Day to errors or omissions by certain Hartford election officials, a dysfunctional working relationship among all election officials, a lack of leadership and accountability and the absence of a clear, legally prescribed chain of command.
“This investigation shows that the Registrar of Voters were completely unprepared for Election Day, that no effort was made to correct issues they were aware of ahead of time, and that their lack of ability to communicate resulted in failure to perform their primary responsibilities and duties,” said Mayor Segarra. “It is ridiculous and inexcusable. This is not the first time this office has demonstrated incompetence and dysfunction. It is unacceptable that our citizens’ right to vote was compromised in any way. I want to thank the Committee of Inquiry for taking the time to examine these very troubling issues. I will continue to work with City Council, our Hartford Delegation and the Secretary of the State to ensure that we do not go through another election cycle with a Registrars’ office that cannot perform its basic function. The voters of Hartford deserve better. ”
"Clearly this is unacceptable," said Council President Shawn Wooden. “The total inadequacy of the preparation going into the election, the level of dysfunction, the inability of those involved in administering the election to work in a professional and competent manner, the seeming indifference to getting it right, it’s outrageous. We need to be able to do better in terms of running elections in the city. In terms of what happens next, I think there will be universal support for fixing the problem, fixing the system. Maybe that relates to individuals, maybe that relates to the structure of the Officer of the Registrar of Voters.”
As part of the investigation, the Committee reviewed more than 10,000 documents and conducted numerous interviews. The Committee then took formal testimony during two days of public hearings on December 22 and 23, 2014.
Contact: Hilda Muñoz
(January 15, 2015) – Today, Mayor Pedro E. Segarra announced that he has signed an Executive Order establishing a plan to enhance the City’s security protocol against potential cyber threats. The executive order creates a Cyber Intrusion Command Center (CICC) that is charged with identifying any threats or successful cyberattacks, coordinating a response and ensuring that incidents are investigated by the appropriate law enforcement agency. The order also outlines responsibilities for each department in the City, employees and contractors, including limiting data and network access to authorized individuals and protecting the City’s systems, networks, e-mails and hand-held devices with passwords.
“Given an increase of cyberattacks in our country, it is only prudent for the City to take precautions and safeguard sensitive information pertaining to City business and personal employee information,” Mayor Segarra said. “This order is not intended to interfere with any individual’s privacy. It is meant to keep the City and its employees safe.”
A group of key City departments will propose a detailed organizational structure for the CICC within 10 days of the order. The group will present its proposed structure to the Mayor for approval within 30 days. The CICC shall be chaired by Mayor Segarra and shall consist of all City departments. Members of the CICC will report to the Mayor and the City Council regarding any issues that are being addressed.
In addition to participating in the CICC, each department in the City must contribute personnel, resources and data to the CICC. Servers, laptops, desktops and other devices must have anti-virus software installed and updated and departments must remind employees and contractors of cybersecurity policies. Departments must also plan for continuity of operations and for disaster recovery in the event of a successful cyberattack. The executive order also outlines responsibilities for employees and contractors, including changing passwords every 90 days, protecting all devices used for City business with passwords, being vigilant when using the Internet and e-mail, avoiding the use of personal or unauthorized devices on work computers and limiting the use of City computers to City business.
The City’s information technology department, MetroHartford Information Services, will oversee the City’s technology security strategy. MHIS is responsible for all firewalls, intrusion detection systems, application control engines, annual security audits and penetration tests. It is also responsible for validating, to the Cyber Intrusion Command Center, that departments are diligent in their security practices. MHIS is responsible for ensuring that all cyber technology policies are up to date, City employees receive annual training on cybersecurity, software is maintained and that all City departments have the proper technology to ensure that they can comply with this order.
Contact: Hilda Muñoz
January 16th through January 19th students in Hartford and throughout Connecticut can view SELMA for FREE!
(January 12, 2015) Today, Mayor Pedro E. Segarra applauded USA Cycling’s decision to hold the 2017 Cyclo-cross National Championships in the City of Hartford.
“I am thrilled that USA Cycling has recognized Hartford as a destination for this popular, national sporting event, one of several drawn to Hartford this year and in the coming years,” Mayor Segarra said. “An event like this will shine a light on the many things Hartford has to offer, as well as the City’s legacy of bicycle manufacturing. I want to thank the Connecticut Cycling Advancement Program, Riverfront Recapture and the Connecticut Convention & Sports Bureau for pulling together to make this happen.”
The CCAP mission is to better the lives of youth and young adults through the sport of cycling. Their goal is to provide opportunities in cycling both in and out of schools, through high school cycling clubs, parks and recreation programs, and youth travel teams. The 2017 USA Cyclo-cross National Championships are to take place in January 2017 at Riverside Park. It is one of several national sporting events taking place in the capital city, including the American Athletic Conference Championships happening in March at the XL Center and the 2016 USA Gymnastics Championships.
Contact: Hilda Muñoz