Stafstrom stays on job for Ganim
BRIDGEPORT - Returned Mayor Joe Ganim has been purging City Hall of some political adversaries.
But there is one foe it seems he cannot oust from the payroll even if he wanted to.
After seeking proposals for a new law firm to handle the city’s borrowing, the Ganim administration has decided to stick with the local Pullman & Comley.
Pullman & Comley has worked for the city for two decades.
The politically connected firm’s attorneys sunk plenty of cash into ex-Mayor Bill Finch’s bid for a third term as he tried unsuccessfully last year to fend off Ganim.
And when Ganim, mayor from 1991 to 2003, beat Finch in September’s Democratic primary, prominent Pullman attorney John Stafstrom - a Bridgeport resident and mover and shaker in local and statewide Democratic politics - helped run businesswoman Mary-Jane Foster’s petition candidacy for mayor.
Stafstrom is chairman of Pullman’s public finance department and intimately involved with Bridgeport as a client, often showing up personally at meetings with city staff and elected officials.
Finch had endorsed Foster, an ally-turned-political adversary, in a joint attempt to thwart Ganim’s return to office following his 2003 corruption conviction.
Ganim had sought competitive proposals for bond counsel, which, given Stafstrom’s support of Finch and Foster, was not unexpected. But when Pullman submitted its numbers, they came in the cheapest, according to Finance Director Ken Flatto.
Stafstrom in an interview Tuesday said he was pleased that Pullman will continue its relationship with City Hall.
“I have a particular interest in Bridgeport,” Stafstrom said. “I believe in and care about the community. We try to make an extra effort for Bridgeport.”