Press Release: Groups Urge City to Postpone Vote on the $1.1 Billion Giveaway to New York Stock Exchange
NYSE Chairman Grasso Seems Hesitant; Mayor-Elect Bloomberg Questions "Retention" Deals
For Release November 9, 2001
Contact: Bettina Damiani - Good Jobs New York (212) 414.9394 cell: (646) 246.4093, or Jahahara Alkebulan-Ma'at - Alliance for a Working Economy (718) 857.4865
With a vote scheduled Tuesday on a $1.1 billion subsidy package for the New York Stock Exchange, the largest subsidy deal in New York State history appears in doubt. Exchange Chairman Richard Grasso expressed misgivings about the project yesterday. In light of the events of September 11th, Grasso is concerned about the 900-foot office tower slated to be built atop the Exchange's new trading floor.
The subsidy deal, financed by New York City and State, would provide the NYSE a new 600,000 square-foot trading floor across the street from its current location on Broad and Wall Streets. Yesterday, Grasso reiterated what many advocates and developers have recently suggested: the new trading floor should be built within the reconstructed World Trade Center complex.
The New York City Industrial Development Agency board will vote on $920 million of city-backed bonds to finance the project on Tuesday, November 13th, at 9:00 am at 110 William Street in Manhattan.
"If the city and state are so intent on subsidizing a new trading floor for the NYSE, they should invest public monies in ways that support the reconstruction and make the area amenable for all New Yorkers," says Bettina Damiani, project director of Good Jobs New York.
Long before the September 11th attacks, Good Jobs New York, the Alliance for a Working Economy and numerous other raised questions about the NYSE subsidy package explaining it was a bad deal for New York taxpayers. Now, with the tower in doubt, the deal is even more questionable. That's because current deal calls for rent from the office tower to go to the city to help offset debt service and tax breaks.
"With the city's current budget crisis, it's unconscionable that the city would use taxpayer dollars on a project that does not benefit the reconstruction efforts of Lower Manhattan," says Jahahara Alkebulan-Ma'at, Citywide Coordinator for the Alliance for a Working Economy.
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