By Ann-Marie Mesquita, Staff Writer
HARTFORD — In an open letter to city residents, Luke Bronin on Wednesday formally announced his bid to unseat Mayor Pedro Segarra.
Bronin, 35, recently resigned from his position as the General Counsel to Gov. Dan Malloy. He also served in senior positions at the U.S. Department of the Treasury and as an intelligence officer in Afghanistan. He is a partner at Hinckley Allen & Snyder LLP.
“Our city stands at a moment of opportunity and promise,” writes Luke in his letter posted on the site. “But we also face tremendous challenges, and we’ve let too many opportunities slip away. What we need is a mayor who gets down into the messy details of governing day after day… and who holds people accountable.”
In addition to the letter, Luke rolled out three areas of immediate focus for the campaign: growing jobs, strengthening neighborhoods and closing the achievement gap.
“Today, Hartford is at a crossroads when it comes to education. For thousands of Hartford’s kids, magnet schools have created opportunities that weren’t there ten or fifteen years ago. But we’ve also created a two-tiered system, where too many children are in schools that haven’t gotten the attention or investment they deserve. Hartford’s children deserve better.”
Luke also pledged to run a campaign based on an open and sustained dialogue with Hartford residents by knocking on doors, meeting with groups at people’s homes or in community centers, and making phone calls.”
Celestino Jimenez, a member of the 3rd District Town Committee and the Democratic State Central Committee, said that this election “can’t be about one community versus another — it’s got to be about what’s best for Hartford and about who is the best person to make city hall run effectively. The reason I’m supporting Luke is simple: I think he’s the right person for the job.”
Segarra said he welcomes other candidates into the democratic process.
“I welcome other candidates into the race, as that is part of the democratic process,” said Mayor Segarra. “I am very proud of my record and the tremendous optimism and momentum in our city today. I have a consistent record of service and a deep commitment to our city, and the significant progress we have made together in transforming Hartford in the past five years is very evident.”
Segarra announced his candidacy on Jan. 5 outside City Hall.
He touted the city’s graduation rates which, he said, is now over 70 percent from under 30 percent when he took office. he also listed the lowest crime rates in decades, blight reduction programs that have begun to transform neighborhoods; and of attracting more businesses to the city as a few of his accomplishments for the city.
Others have also announced their intentions to run: Hartford attorney John Gale formed an exploratory committee; council members David MacDonald and Joel Cruz both said they plan to run; Town and City Clerk John Bazzano is also considering a run for the top job at city hall.