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Airport Land Deal Litigation, New High School On Council Agenda

January 19th, 2014 · 16 Comments · City Council, Development and Zoning, Education, News and Events

Agenda items for the City Council meeting Tuesday night at 7 include possible votes on a proposed legal settlement to the municipal airport land deal and continued permitting and planning involving replacement of Harding High School on the site of the former GE plant off Boston Avenue.

Public Safety and Transportation Committee Report re: Application for Waiver to Extend Driveway Width (4) Entrances located at the New Harding High School on Bond Street.

Public Safety and Transportation Committee Report re: Executive Session Discussion and Potential Action as Appropriate with respect to Certain Litigation specifically the Pending Appeal concerning the Stratford ZBA’s Granting of a Variance for the New Access Way Constructed by Mark IV Construction Co. Inc. on Sikorsky Memorial Airport Property.

Full agenda here.

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16 Comments so far ↓

  • Follow the Money

    Airport Access Road (Drieway) Costs
    January 1, 2014
    
    Road Construction
    
    Acquire rights for Moutinho        $46,000
    Complete Construction Plans        $10,000
    Road Construction                 $389,000
    Additional Fire Hydrant             $5,500
    Aquarion Fee Inspection/Testing    $16,500
    Independent Engineer Inspection     $4,400
    As Built (required by Stratford    $10,000
    __________________________________________
    Total Road Construction           $481,900
    
    
    Breakwater Key Condo Appeal
    
    condo Attorney Richard Saxl Fee     $32,000
    Pay off to Attorney John Kucej       $9,000
    City outside Counsel-Ira Bloom      $20,000
    Moutinho Attorneys' fee             $34,000
    Fence, shrubs and landscaping
    settlement                          $22,000
    ___________________________________________
    Total conco appeal and settlement
    costs.                             $117,000
    ___________________________________________
    Total cost for Road Construction
    and Condo Appeal                   $598,900
    
    *Some costs are approximate and could be
    higher but overall not much lower.
    
    Costs do not include City Attorneys' office
    time or court costs.
    • Jennifer Buchanan

      Follow the $$–Missing in the cost might be: 12/12/2011 Mark IV Construction withdrew an offer to purchase 5.5+ acres referred to as Surplus Airport Property Access Road Stratford CT, offered for sale by the City of Bridgeport.

      In the letter to withdraw the offer, from Mark IV Construction to John Ricci, dated December 12,2011 the letter reads:

      We also request compensation for all expenses pertaining to survey and wetland delineation which was provided and is in your possession for your use.

      The response on December 15, 2011 was the matter will be placed on the next Airport Commission Meeting Agenda for consideration.

      There is no itemized bill for the expenses in the FOIA documents I have received thus far. It would be interesting to see this cost and if the city paid the cost.

  • Pete Spain

    “Follow the Money.” thanks for this. What’s your source for these numbers?

    The items listed (some, as you note, approximations) add up to $598,400 for the “1,000-foot-long, 20-foot-wide” (CT Post) driveway … about $30/sq ft, assuming no future costs.

  • Follow the Money

    Deep Throat!

  • Bob Walsh

    Where was Michelle Lyons?
    Wasn’t she outraged over this and wasn’t she not simply going to approve the deal in committee?
    So much for her bluster. Unanimous approval AND on the consent calendar. When I was on the council I would never allow that to happen. Even if I was not on the committee I would let it be known I would move to have it taken off of consent and most chairpersons would oblige. This is totally outrageous. The council, led by a president who sits on the airport commission, is trying to sweep it under the rug.

    • Ron Mackey

      With “unanimous” approval AND on the consent calendar there’s no need for a City Council because they have forfeited their right to legislate and debate.

      • Bob Walsh

        Yes Ron, that is the easy way out. But it only takes one council member to remove the item from the consent calendar and they do not need to be a member of the committee.
        This item has had so much publicity I would hope but cannot confirm this will happen.
        A lazy council member does not bother finding out what is on the consent calendar. A smart one always does.

  • Bob Walsh

    The council should table the matter until there is a complete and independent review of the entire process. We know the City Attorney’s office was intimately involved in the proceeding from the get go. They are conflicted out in this matter and should have recused themselves. Instead they are encouraging the council to accept this agreement and by doing so surrenders the last bit of leverage they have at getting to the truth.

  • Bob Walsh

    The City Attorney’s office will tell the council they must accept this offer. Time is of the essence. Or it may be withdrawn and they may demand $500,000 or some other absurd amount just to try to scare them.
    We will see if this new council is going to stand up to the city or lay down and play dead.

  • Bob Walsh

    We know the city hired outside legal counsel in their persecution of John Ricci. Follow the Money did not list that expense so we know this is not a complete accounting of how much this has cost the taxpayers. And yet they want the council to approve more. Let’s see what Torres will do. Let’s see how Michelle Lyons will report this matter out of committee. Since it passed unanimously she voted for it and will have to urge the council to accept. Let’s see if any of the new council members will get in her face and will demand full disclosure.

  • Steven Auerbach

    Bob, why is Michelle Lyons the target of attack? I haven’t been following the latest because the subject matter has become tiresome. Did Michelle Lyons do something out of character? Please explain.

  • Bob Walsh

    No Steve. Not at all. Perfectly in character. She complains about the overtaxed residents in the city. She complains about not having all the facts. And then HER committee approves unanimously the settlement that will cost the city an additional $117,000 without demanding anything in return. All talk, no action.
    As chair all she would have to do is say “at this time I will entertain a motion to table until a full accounting and explanation is provided.” End of story.

  • Steven Auerbach

    Got it!

  • Tom White

    I believe Michelle Lyons, as committee chair, did not vote. Bob Walsh’s suggestion the chair could have moved to table the matter until a full accounting and explanation is provided was what she should have done. Perhaps a couple of council members may ask some questions in public session and abstain from voting for lack of information. If the votes are there to approve, expect to hear “All in favor …” Done. “Motion to adjourn.”

  • Mojo

    *** Let’s hope they don’t rush things along just for the sake of it, especially when it’s worth lots of taxpayer money! ***

  • Hector A. Diaz

    Pete Spain/Ron Mackey if you can please contact me at (203)727-4085 at your convenience.

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