Wednesday, March 22, 2006

"Invited to a cash bonanza" in MetroNY 03/22/06

‘Invited to a cash bonanza’
Bronx residents wary of pact with Yankees

by patrick arden / metro new york

MAR 22, 2006

BRONX — After months of negotiations, a draft of a community benefits agreement related to the Yankee Stadium project has surfaced.

CBAs are binding contracts that are traditionally crafted with the input of neighborhood groups. This deal was worked out primarily between the team and Borough President Adolfo Carrion.

It promises 25 percent of all stadium construction and post-construction jobs will go to Bronx residents. t also creates a “not-for-profit corporation” run by someone selected by a panel appointed by elected officials that will annually dole out $700,000 to area not-for-profits, $100,000 for park maintenance and $100,000 for “equipment and promotional merchandise” for schools and youth groups.

Neither the Yankees nor Carrion were ready to sign off on it yesterday.

“It’s just a draft,” said Yankees spokeswoman Alice McGillion. “Both sides are still talking.”

“Until we’re ready to announce it, we can’t get into too much detail,” added Carrion, who said the draft established a “framework that I’ve been pushing for.”

“This whole thing is about construction jobs and the creation of a slush fund,” said Lukas Herbert, a member of Community Board 4, which voted against the stadium plan. “A slush fund that’s going to reward political loyalists who have backed the stadium over the objections of their constituents. They’re going to be invited to a cash bonanza.”


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