John Bumba has been in law enforcement for 27 years.
And now he’s back where he started–in Bridgeport–but wearing the chief’s hat this time.
He comes aboard with a list of priorities and plans.
He says the department has not done much in the way of community service for quite a while, and it’s an important way to reach out to the people.
“Have officers out on foot patrol every once in a while,” Bumba said. “Talk to people. You know, we’ve got a bunch of good guys here.”
Six full-time and eight part-time officers cover everything from breaking-and-enterings and thefts to violence and drugs.
Another of Bumba’s priorities is to get them a raise.
“That’s one of my main goals, coming in, is to get the officers better compensated for what they do,” he said.
He said he doesn’t want Bridgeport to be “just a little training center” for other departments.
He’s updating every policy and procedure, saying it’s been too long since that’s been done.
And he says the best thing about Bridgeport is also the worst thing.
“It’s the hub of everything,” Bumba said. “You’ve got every major route running right through Bridgeport. Everybody passes through Bridgeport.”
He says it’s a tight-knit community with good people.
But it has challenges.
“Drug problem’s huge,” he said, “It’s just like every other community. Drugs are everywhere.”
It’s his second day on the job, but he already has one clear message to the public.
“I’ve got an open door policy,” he said. “Come down and talk to me anytime you want. You know I’m here during the day, and sometimes in the evenings. Come on down.”