Saundra Kee Borges Out as Hartford Chief Operating Officer

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK

    Hartford city officials announced Friday afternoon that Saundra Kee Borges, whose city car was involved in a crash at the end of September, has been removed from her position as acting Chief Operating Officer.

    In a memo to the Hartford City Council, Mayor Pedro Segarra said Albert Ilg will take over for Borges as acting COO until the city can find a permanent replacement. Borges will continue to serve on the city's Corporation Counsel.

    "I think that's good," said Shawn Wooden, president of Hartford's City Council. "We've had an acting COO for over a year and the city needs leadership that's permanent to get our house in order."

    The leadership change comes just two weeks after Borges' city-issued car was involved in a late night crash and it comes just one day after police released video contradicting her initial time line of events in the hours before the crash.

    "Even before that came about I have been considering that she returns to the Corporation Counsel's office," said Segarra. "I think it will all work out better for the city."

    After the Sept. 28 crash, Borges claimed she went straight from an NAACP dinner to the Hartford Police Department to deal with her son's arrest.

    However, police department security cameras show Borges and her fiancé, Deputy Fire Chief Terry Waller, arriving at police headquarters about three hours after the dinner ended.

    After the video was released, Borges issued a new statement saying that after the dinner, she and Waller went her son's apartment and then sat in her car calling attorneys before driving to the police department.

    Waller was driving Borges' car at the time of the crash, according to police.

    The other driver fled the scene and is facing criminal charges, according to police.

    The crash followed other high-profile incidents involving the misuse of city vehicles and the questionable use of city credit cards.

    "Clearly there's been a lot of public embarrassment with respect to the management of the city's affairs," said Wooden. "Lately the level of frustration amongst the council, and some others, with the Corporation Council's office has come to a boiling point as well."

    Hartford's City Council will consider a resolution at its meeting next week to remove the city's Deputy Corporation Council, John Van Norden, from his position because of concerns with his job performance.

    Also next week, the city's audit commission is expected to release its review of the city's take-home car policy.  Borges' use of a city vehicle the night of the crash is expected to be addressed in the report. 

    Borges did not respond to a request for comment on her position change.