Reuters is reporting that a vote to give a massive package of Liberty Bond incentives to Goldman Sachs to build a tower next to Ground Zero will be postponed until at least early September, but public officials pooh-poohed the notion that the negotiations for the bonds were in any jeopardy.
The low-interest bonds are meant to encourage building downtown; there will be some criticism of Goldman Sachs’ deal to get these incentives, according to Bettina Damiani of the watchdog group Good Jobs, New York.
City Comptroller William C. Thompson Jr. gave his imprimatur to the Goldman Sachs deal yesterday. But his statement suggests there may be additional goodies beyond the ones already mentioned in press reports. To wit:
“While I have concerns regarding a provision granting Goldman Sachs an opportunity to obtain even better benefits down the road, I support the proposed agreement and Goldman Sachs’ commitment to retain 8,100 jobs in lower Manhattan.”
We’re waiting for more details. And for a vote by the Battery Park City Authority to approve the lease, which is the last piece needed before a really big and happy press conference.
As we reported yesterday, one element of the hold-up in finalizing the deal with Goldman is the negotiation over penalty fees to be paid to Goldman by the city and state if a satisfactory, comprehensive program for ensuring security at the new World Trade Center site isn’t put into place.
– Matthew Schuerman and Tom McGeveran