January 21, 2019

Bronin's campaign kickoff scheduled for Tuesday

HBJ File Photo
HBJ File Photo
Mayor Luke Bronin at a recent insurtech event. Bronin intends to run for a second four-year term.

Democrat Luke Bronin said he will announce his bid for a second term as Hartford's mayor on Tuesday.

Bronin, 39, who is in the fourth and final year of his first term as mayor, is expected to make his announcement at City Hall at noon, a campaign official announced on Monday.

An attorney and previous top legal advisor to former Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, Bronin notched a significant political victory for the city in late 2017, when the legislature agreed the state would cover approximately $550 million of Hartford's debt over the next 20-plus years.

Hartford, which had been flirting with the prospects of a rare municipal bankruptcy, quickly saw its junk-level bond rating jump multiple notches after the deal was done. The city is now under the oversight of the Municipal Accountability Review Board, an entity Bronin had urged lawmakers to create in 2016 and 2017.

The mayor also flirted with a run for governor, forming an exploratory committee, but called off the effort about four months later as a crowded field developed, saying he didn't want to open up an avenue for political attacks on the city's debt bailout, which has been criticized by suburban politicians.

Despite the debt deal, the city's commercial property tax rate remains the highest in the state for the foreseeable future.

In Bronin's first three years on the job, the city has also:

-Secured a $50 million funding pledge from major insurers, the first installment of which was paid last summer.

-Battled in court with the developer of a major city project that began before Bronin's tenure -- Dunkin Donuts Park.

-Welcomed UConn's downtown campus, Infosys, Hartford InsurTech Hub, and a Stanley Black & Decker accelerator.

-Cut funding for various cultural events and parades, a number of which have recovered thanks to private donations.

-Secured funding for a Youth Service Corps.

-Cracked down on crisis pregnancy centers.

J. Stan McCauley announced his candidacy in November, according to the Hartford Courant. The Courant and political blogger Kevin Rennie have also named former Mayor Eddie Perez and Rep. Brandon McGee (D-Hartford) as rumored potential contenders.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that no other candidate had announced a run for mayor.

Read more

Citing city's 'momentum,' Bronin makes his pitch for a second term

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