2013 is off to a great start for our capital city. The headlines for Hartford have featured new businesses, new construction, and a new attitude. Front Street is reporting brisk business, UConn is moving its West Hartford campus downtown, and hundreds of housing will be under construction soon at various locations in the city, including Adriaen’s Landing. This Sunday on Face the State, Mayor Pedro Segarra talked about all the good things happening these days and the things that still need to be addressed.
While crime in some of the inner city neighborhoods often makes news, it is the other facets of urban life that most Hartfordites and potential city dwellers complain about more often. One of the big gripes I hear about, is the high cost of car insurance. Why is it, that a person who lives downtown and walks to a downtown company for work, pay twice as much as a similar person who lives in West Hartford and drives to Meriden every day?
There is also that car tax, that is considerably higher than the surrounding towns. It is certainly true that many young professionals want to live downtown, but many have confided in me that they don’t vote or pay taxes here, because they can’t afford to. They instead register their cars at their parents houses, saving hundreds of dollars. “If I had to pay the Hartford car tax, I wouldn’t be able to afford live in the city,” one young city dweller told me. These people don’t vote, either. That’s large segment of the Hartford population whose voice is silenced because of money.
I asked the mayor what he plans to do about this, and you can hear his ideas at the link below.
I should point out, that Kara and I live in the city, and we hate paying a huge amount more than suburbanites in insurance and car taxes….and we have great driving records. I was stunned to learn a while back, that a suburban driver with a DUI on his record, pays hundreds less than I do in car insurance.
We also talked about iquilt, the vacant lots that scar downtown, and the mayor’s own political future. You can watch the entire interview with Mayor Segarra, right here: http://www.wfsb.com/video?autoStart=true&topVideoCatNo=default&clipId=8179082
Also, the Mayor talks about the XL Center/Hartford Civic Center, whose collapse in 1978 is the subject of our Face the State Flashback. Watch the segment right here: http://dennishouse.wordpress.com/2013/01/11/the-hartford-civic-center-collapse-of-1978/
Check out this cool story on what Hartford could have looked like http://dennishouse.wordpress.com/2012/01/24/what-hartford-might-have-bee/