Fabrizi said twice this week, Gov. M. Jodi Rell spoke with him to reassure her commitment to the long-delayed billion-dollar development.Apparently that was not good enough for State Senators Bill Finch, Edwin A. Gomes and State Rep. Robert T. Keeley, Jr., who claimed that Rell has been slow in reacting and not pushing the project forward.
Robert L. Genuario, secretary of the state's Office of Policy and Management, said Friday the governor fully supports Steel Point, but does not want to release more money until the city needs it to conclude a purchase.
"This project's in trouble," Finch said of Steel Point. "These are big developers, and if the state is going to nickel and dime this and it fails, it'll be the governor's fault." Finch said the project needs more "upfront" money.Of course the State should not be writing blank checks for projects without setting some standards of accountability.
Genuario said last year the state committed $20 million, and this year it's more than $13 million.Exactly. Maybe the urgency of an election. Rell is right to insist that any state money authorizations come after a deal is made to acquire the remaining properties.
"The mayor is a good advocate for the Steel Point project," Genuario said. "I think he's satisfied that the state is supportive."
Genuario said he also spoke this week with representatives of Midtown Equities LLC, the designated developers.
"It's not unusual for us to provide funds as they are needed," Genuario said, adding the city has yet to access the $8.5 million approved earlier this year. "The urgency may be more perceived than real."
Connecticut Post Development moves inexorably forward, by Ken Dixon 9/30/2006.