Slam-Dunk! Touch-down! Goal!!!! Taxpayers come through for American’s highest paid CEO

Don’t let the residue of the Great Recession get you down.

While it is true that America’s middle-class is on the ropes, unemployment remains high, sending a kid to college costs more than most people save in their entire lives, child poverty in Connecticut has gone up 50% in the last decade and the state is facing a $1 billion dollar budget deficit next year, Connecticut’s taxpayers managed to dig deep and find the money to provide one of the world’s biggest hedge fund owners, Ray Dalio, with $115 million in state funds. Meanwhile Stamford’s taxpayers learned this week that they were helping to put the whole deal together thanks to their Mayor’s decision granting a private developer access to some of the most valuable publicly owned waterfront property left in Connecticut.

In return for all this generosity, Dalio, the founder and CEO of Bridgewater Associates, and a man who was paid $3.9 billion last year will move his offices from Westport to a new $750 million office complex on Stamford’s waterfront.

The deal began with Governor Malloy’s decision to give Dalio a taxpayer-funded corporate welfare package that included a $25 million forgivable loan, $5 million in grant funds for job training, $5 million for an alternative energy system and $80 Million in tax credits.

Now, under Part II of the effort, Stamford’s Mayor Mike Pavia has signed a “letter of intent” granting the developer of Stamford’s Harbor Point the right to use city-owned property as part of overall effort to clear the way for Bridgewater Associates’ headquarters.

The mayor’s action will allow the developer to move the South End boatyard to a different location.  Never mind that boaters say the alternative site doesn’t accommodate their needs, we’re talking about pleasing a billionaire – and that is billion with a B – so what he wants is what he gets.

Just to make the whole situation as absurd as possible and to add insult to injury, while the letter of intent was signed back in December, it was only made public this week.

According to reports in the Stamford Advocate, “Mayor Michael Pavia said the goal of the document was simply to allow the zoning review process to commence so as to give the city a chance to assess the plan…Pavia said the city has not yet negotiated a price for the land in question. According to the letter of intent, should the boatyard plan be approved by the Zoning Board, the city and BLT [the private developer] will determine the price as part of a final agreement granting the developer property rights.”

Oh, and for those who are into reading the fine print, although initially Mayor Malloy and then Mayor Pavia pledged that no development project would go forward without all of the appropriate approvals, the letter of intent includes special language that reads, “The Applicant shall obtain final approval of such grant by City of Stamford Boards and Commissions as may be required by City Charter, state law or as the Mayor of the City of Stamford, in his sole discretion deems necessary or appropriate.”

The new wording certainly suggests that if Stamford’s various public boards and commissions didn’t act in an appropriately way, the mayor might have to intervene to move the project along without such approvals.

It is nice to note though that when confronted about this latest addition, the Pavia administration claimed that the language is being misunderstood and the letter of intent does nothing more than allow the process to start moving forward.

So here we are.

On the long list of challenges facing Connecticut, we can put a check mark next to the task that reads – “Help the world’s biggest hedge fund and the highest paid CEO in the country pay for a great new office with a great waterfront view.”

More on these latest developments can be found in the Stamford Advocate: http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/news/article/Setting-table-for-Bridgewater-city-paves-the-way-4177724.php#ixzz2HgLY6z9H  and  http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/news/article/Boatyard-plan-agreement-defended-4184605.php#ixzz2HgLH7Uac

  • mookalaboona

    Will it ever end with this idiot Malloy

    • Linda174

      He has been mentioning to others that the pension for teachers needs to be converted to a 401k. Do you know anything about this?

  • jschmidt2

    When government tries to pick winners, such as with Malloys First Five, the rest of the businesses get taxed to pay for it. The rewards are questionable and could have been better served if the Malloy lowered taxes to attract business instead of trying to bribe them to stay. Cigna can count landscapers as jobs created. UBS gets money to not layoff more than 1500 employees. Another boondogle along with the busway brought to you by the Malloy admin. Haven’t heard much about Jackson labs recently. Did that subsidy workout?

  • perturbed

    I’m betting Malloy hits up the bond commission next (again) to help fund infrastructure upgrades necessary to support his vision for Harbor Point — this time with the world’s largest hedge fund as the direct beneficiary. Yet another subsidy for these billionaires.

    You heard it here first. 😉

    Wondering just how much Bridgewater Associates raked in last year?

    $6.6 Billion. (Scroll down to #43.)

    http://www.businessinsider.com/100-top-hedge-funds-in-2012-2013-1?op=1

    And yes, that was just their profit, not asset under management. With over $130,000,000,000 under management, the standard “two and twenty” fee structure and a 14% return is, indeed, over $6 Billion.

    (Sometimes millionaires can be so stupid. Can you imagine forking over more than 1/3 of the market’s return to some hedge fund manager? Idiots. But at least the millionaires made their own decision to get fleeced. We lowly taxpayers get the decision made for us.)

    –perturbed

  • msavage

    See the Hartford Courant article today about school safety and the fact that a grant program for school safety was cut to help close the deficit.http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/newtown-sandy-hook-school-shooting/hc-schoolsecurity-grant-20130111,0,511815.story

    See school districts all over the country where school psychologists and guidance counselors are being cut/forced to share their time between more than one school. Where there are not enough trained personnel to adequately identify students who are struggling with mental health issues or to deal effectively with bullying. Look at the kid in California. Obviously being bullied for years and suffering greatly because of it. Look at what Adamowski did in Hartford–screwing with the guidance staff and leaving kids poorly supported.

    Meanwhile, Malloy is throwing millions of taxpayer dollars at Ray Dalio–the highest paid hedge fund manager in the country. Millions of dollars in this state alone going for corporate welfare. And it’s happening all over the country. Meanwhile, school psychologists are forced to travel from one school to another, expected to remember the names and faces of hundreds of children. Is it any wonder that only the ones who act out the most and cause the most disruption within the school itself are the ones that get any help? Kids like the one in California, reportedly very quiet, intelligent and mercilessly picked on, are left out in the cold.

    This is all part of a pattern. A well-orchestrated plan to funnel money up to the top and leave the rest of us starved.