Docstoc

FORT TRUMBULL

Document Sample
FORT TRUMBULL Powered By Docstoc
					E-mail: saintrobert@comcast.net
December 16, 2004



Governor Jodi Rell
Executive Chambers
State Capitol
Hartford, Connecticut 06106

       Re:    The Pfizer Conspiracy: A Failure of Government

Dear Governor Rell:

        Since 1995, numerous legislators, professionals, administrators, corporations,
consultants, real estate brokers, local and state commissioners, planners, etc. under the
directorship of former Governor Rowland and his pediculae engaged in a civil conspiracy
contrived to complement Pfizer’s undertakings in the Fort Trumbull, New London peninsula,
which would coincidentally increase its tax base in the long-term after graduated elimination of
tax abatements caused by demolition of buildings in the Enterprise Zone, the property owner
immediately begins paying property taxes without any abatement.

        In summary, state and local governmental agencies predetermined the outcome and
tailored the mostly descriptive documentation without benefit of essential supporting analysis
and assessments to fit the conclusions – exactly the opposite of the deductive reasoning process
upon which government is supposed to make decisions in a perfect world.

        From 1997-2002, the former Chairman, Planning and Zoning Commission met with two
(2) key City Council members regarding his reappointment. The Council reappointed him upon
the secret assurance to both members of passage of the Municipal Development Plan (“MDP”)
and the proposed uses for Fort Trumbull. The Chairman, also, held the position of ad-hoc
member of the New London Development Corporation (“NLDC”) Board of Directors, who
relinquished his seat upon prodding from the Director Law. He along with at least one other
member engaged in improper and illegal regular discussions with Dr. Gaudiani and Corcoran
Jennison representatives during pending applications by NLDC and the developer for
determination of consistency with the New London Plan of Conservation and Development, zone
change, special use permits, sec. 8-24 referrals and approval of coastal site plans. Yet, he
actively participated in rubber-stamping all determinations and decisions without reviewing any
of the information. State law mandates that the city’s Plan be consistent with the state Plan of
Conservation and Development; the record clearly shows that the city ignored the state’s Plan.

       Further, for example, the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies required the
Department of Economic and Community Development to consider the energy consumption for
the Fort Trumbull project and, therefore, the production of “greenhouse” gases with the goal of
minimization. The NLDC prepared the Draft Environmental Impact Evaluation for the
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


Department and concluded without any supportive data or analysis that there would be no
increase in consumption from the project – and, elephants fly on their own power!

        Similarly, the impact evaluation provided no water quality monitoring data or analysis to
project the impacts from contaminated stormwater on the Thames River, a degraded water body
according to the Department of Environmental Protection. The poorly designed and installed
stormwater treatment system is primarily a large particulate and floatable trap, which will not
remove any soluble, including toxic, pollutants.

        Yet, another example is the Corcoran Jennison hotel and office building complex, which
it has marketed as the primary land uses in a Maritime Village District[1] with a Riverwalk and a
small marina the sole public access components considered water-dependent uses under the
Connecticut Coastal Management Act; however, it is a small percentage of the total land-use
area. Furthermore, it is not a village district by law and definitely not a maritime village by any
stretch of imagination for New England. There is greater than 3 times as much area dedicated to
non-water dependent uses, which is contrary to the Act requiring the “highest priority and
preference to water-dependent uses.” All evidence points other water-dependent development
and opportunities, which NLDC and DECD refused to consider.

        The State Bond Commission, formerly chaired by Governor Rowland, with
Representative Andrea Stillman, a voting member and initiator of the bonding, authorized the
issuance of bonds for the Fort Trumbull project under the Connecticut General Statutes, Chapter
588l (Economic Development and Manufacturing Assistance). Nevertheless, Mr. Peter Lent,
Financial Officer, DECD acknowledged the agency mixed the appropriations as Chapter 132
(Municipal Development Projects) funds for all planning, acquisitions and disposal of property;
the acknowledgement occurred during my visit to view all financial assistance agreements and
bonding packages according to a Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) request. Upon
questioning, Mr. Lent’s face turned bright red, and he admitted an inability to identify any
legislative authority justifying the funding shifts.

       All Statements of Compensation filed with the New London Superior Court for taken
properties clearly stated that NLDC used Chapter 132 as its funding source although it has never
received grants under such statute. Did the Department misapply and earmark legislatively
appropriated funds? No one at the legislative and executive levels is strangely willing to answer
the simple question.

       Statute requires that the Development Plan contain a Relocation Plan for projected
dispossessed residents; the DECD knowingly ignored the requirement according to e-mails
obtained under FOIA.



[1]    It is not a true village district as that term is defined in CGS, sec. 8-2j.


                                                           2
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


        Unfortunately, the Office of Policy and Management’s (“OPM”) determination of the
Development Plan as not being adverse [i.e., non-inimical] to state-wide planning objectives
established in Connecticut’s Plan for Conservation and Development are incontrovertibly
inconsistent with the facts and truth from a comprehensive analysis of the state’s Plan. For
example, the Development Plan neither gives the “highest priority and preference to water-
dependent uses,” a goal of the Connecticut Plan, nor does it demonstrate the sheer absence of any
other current or future water-dependent use alternatives. Similarly, it has been clearly
demonstrated from testimony that the Development Plan is significantly inconsistent with a
similar plan for New London. Moreover, in preparing the City’s Plan for Conservation and
Development, neither the Planning and Zoning Commission nor the City Council ever
considered the state’s Plan as mandated by the Connecticut General Statutes, Sec. 8-23.

        Additionally, the General Statutes mandates the State Bond Commission insure that
applications for state funds demonstrate consistency with the Connecticut Plan. But, in actuality,
there is no facts or showing in the record of decision established by DECD supporting OPM's
conclusion that the Application and the MDP are not adverse to state planning objectives.

       Connecticut law prohibited the acquisition of property in the Fort Trumbull area to
implement the MDP prior to its approval by the DECD Commissioner. Nevertheless, NLDC
with the agency’s knowledge used the funds for the illegal acquisition of property before
approval of the MDP.

        In 2000, I filed a complaint with the Democratic State Auditor, Mr. Kevin Johnston,
regarding the misapplication and earmarking of legislatively appropriated funds under Chapter
588l as Chapter 132 funds. Mr. Johnston acknowledged the problematical issue. Thereafter, Mr.
Johnston sent a letter to Attorney General Blumenthal requesting a legal opinion, which has not
been forthcoming to date. It is my understanding that DECD would like a legal opinion from the
AG, who may have a conflict of interest in this matter because of a personal relationship with a
former staff member and subsequent consultant to the NLDC.

       In 2000 and 2001, I sent two letters to Representative Andrea Stillman, Co-Chair of the
Finance, Revenue and Bonding Subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee regarding the
misapplication of Chapter 588l funds as identified above. Representative Stillman on both
occasions requested a response in letters to Marc Ryan, Secretary of OPM to my assertions.
None has been forthcoming to date from Mr. Ryan and Rep. Stillman refused to pursue the
matter even for her own edification and that of her subcommittee.

       The City is the rightful owner of the former Naval Undersea Warfare Center property
since the United States Navy transferred the property under the “Economic Development
Conveyance” to the Implementing Local Reuse Authority and, under Connecticut statutes, the
Council appointed the New London Development as agent on behalf of the City. In reality,
mediation should be limited to the Department of Economic and Community Development and


                                                3
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


the City – the real parties in opposition. The City should claim possession of the property,
terminate the NLDC as implementing agent, which serves an unnecessary and duplicative
function with Redevelopment.

        Recently, you selected a mediator to resolve the conflict between the New London
Development Corporation and City Council presuming, of course, that state and local agencies
fully performed their tasks according to law for development of Fort Trumbull; unfortunately,
the assumption is more than seriously flawed in the famous words of “Felix Unger.” Yet, DECD
Commissioner James Abromaitis in telephone calls to the wrong mayor and the City Manager
emphatically and repeatedly stated that he is a “facilitator” rather than a “mediator.” I think that
your administration needs to speak with one voice using precise terms.

        I strongly urge expansion of your charge to the mediator by requesting that he fully
collect all pertinent and relevant facts to evaluate whether the project meets all statutory and
regulatory requirements before negotiating any settlements mindful of the Request for
Declaratory Ruling filed by the Fort Trumbull Conservancy with DECD.

      For your information the following are my findings of the relevant, pertinent and
comprehensive facts and issues regarding the Fort Trumbull Municipal Development Plan area:

I.        Background

Fact #1        1995: The New London City Council created the Local Reuse Authority (“LRA”)
               aka “The NUWC Redevelopment Authority” for the transfer of the former Naval
               Undersea Warfare Center (“NUWC”) commensurate with the requirements for
               economic development conveyances to municipalities according to the federal
               Base Closure and Realignment Act (“BRAC”).

Fact #2        Sept. 10, 1997: Dr. Claire Gaudiaini, President, Connecticut College, revived the
               New London Development Corporation (“NLDC”) in a filing with the Secretary
               of State and in coordination with Peter Ellef and Governor John Rowland. The
               college’s board of trustees approved her spending a significant portion of her time
               to downtown development projects. NLDC agrees that Richard Brown, City
               Manager, will serve as co-vice president of NLDC. In a Day newspaper article,
               Anthony Basilica, City Councillor and Chairman of the New London Democratic
               Party said he is concerned the city is being included as an afterthought. Mr.
               Basilica claimed Gaudiani is working only to raise the profile of Connecticut
               College, and not out of concern for the city. “We all know Claire. When Claire
               puts her mind to doing something, get our of the way, because steamroller’s
               coming.”




                                                 4
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


Fact #3           Sept. 20, 1997: Richard Brown asserts city and NLDC will work together if the
                  focus remains on helping the city and not on who gets credit. Lobbyist Jay Levin
                  told Judy Benson, Day newspaper staff writer, that he got the idea to reactivate
                  the group during his study of the state pier.

Fact #4           Oct. 1, 1997: Brown claims he met with Peter Ellef to smooth over past
                  differences and get development moving on the former New London Mills site.

Fact #5           Oct. 21, 1997: State announces big plans with limited details for the city
                  waterfront. “We should be consulted now, not after a deal is arrived at,” Brown
                  said.

Fact #6           May 16, 1998 at 8:15 a.m.: Members of the Executive Committee of the NUWC
                  Redevelopment Authority and other invitees attended a hastily called meeting at
                  Pfizer, Groton where Dr. George Milne, Pfizer, Vice-President, NLDC Director
                  and campaign contributor and fund-raiser for former Governor Rowland, unveiled
                  2’ X 3’ sheets of paper taped to the walls of his private conference room depicting
                  the design layout of various site options for the Fort Trumbull Peninsula prepared
                  by Mr. Phil Michalowski, a planning consultant and former Director of Economic
                  Development for the City of New London. The NLDC contracted with Mr.
                  Michalowski to administer its relocation and compensation operations for
                  dispossessed residents and businesses. The designs bore the seal of Mr.
                  Michalowski. The following Executive Committee members attended: Mr.
                  Anthony Basilica, Chairman, New London Democratic Party and City Councilor,
                  John Markowicz, Southeastern Connecticut Enterprise Region, Dr. Gaudiani,
                  President, NLDC, Damon Hemmerdinger, NLDC, also, attended as well as
                  unnamed others. No one took attendance or minutes of the secret meeting.

Fact #7           May 1998: The City Council created the Committee of 6, which was a committee
                  of representatives from DECD, DEP, LRA and NLDC, consisting of Dr. Claire
                  Gaudiani, Dr. George Milne, James Abromaitis[2], Commissioner, Department of
                  Economic and Community Development (“DECD”), Commissioner Art
                  Rocque[3], Department of Environmental Protection, Peg Curtin[4], City
                  Councilor and member of LRA, and Rob Pero5, City Councillor and member of
                  LRA predetermined the goals, objectives, strategy, nature, character and uses in



[2]       Rita Zangari, Deputy Commissioner attended the meeting as the representative.
[3]       Jane Stahl, Deputy Commissioner attended the meeting as the representative.
[4]       Peg Curtin, who was newly elected to the City Council, replaced Mr. Anthony Basilica (terminated on
          6/1/98 for political reasons) an original Committee member, who opted not to run for Council.
[5]       Rob Pero replaced Mr. John Markowicz (appointed on 4/18/98 and terminated on 6/1/98 for political
          reasons), an original Committee member.


                                                      5
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


                the Fort Trumbull development plan for endorsement by the LRA and all other
                governmental agencies.

Fact #8         Early 1999: Pfizer, Incorporated commences building its $270 million, 790,000-
                square-foot headquarters for its Global Research and Development operations
                south of historic Fort Trumbull.

Fact #9         August 4, 1999: Fort Trumbull Addendum to the Overall Economic Development
                Plan, New London, Connecticut, March, 1992 by the New London Development
                Corporation (“NLDC”).

                a.     Additional development projects (non-water-dependent) integral to the
                       total Pfizer development concept and success of the Pfizer Global
                       Development Facility include:

                       (1)       A new hotel to accommodate visiting scientists, researchers and
                                 clients of Pfizer,

                       (2)       A major international conference center, which will also serve as
                                 home to the Pfizer University training facility,

                       (3)       A health and wellness center which will serve bath Pfizer
                                 employees and residents of the New London community,

                       (4)       A bio-science park which will encourage the development of new
                                 pharmaceutical and bioscience businesses and encourage the
                                 expansion of Pfizer’s support and supplier companies, and

                b.     Implement the plan through acquisition, relocation,             demolition,
                       infrastructure installation and land disposition activities.

II.       Environmental Assessment

Fact #10        1998: Mr. Peter Ellef and Governor Rowland at the urging of Lobbyist Jay Levin
                recommended Dr. Claire Gaudiani, then President of Connecticut College and a
                schoolmate at the college in their baccalaureate days, to serve as the president of
                the defunct NLDC.

Fact #11        1998: At a public information meeting, Dr. Claire Gaudiani announced a no-bid
                contract to the Downes Group, a subsidiary of Downes Construction, New
                Britain, CT to plan the development of Fort Trumbull.




                                                  6
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


Fact #12       June 1998: The Connecticut Department of Economic and Community
               Development (“DECD”) issued an Environmental Assessment (“EA”) for the
               project area identified as the Fort Trumbull Municipal Development Plan
               (“MDP”) area.

III.           Draft Environmental Impact Evaluation

Fact #13       As a result of the DECD’s findings in its EA, the New London Development
               Corporation (“NLDC”) prepared a Draft Environmental Impact Evaluation
               (“DEIE”) in late June of 1998 to fulfill the requirements of the Connecticut
               Environmental Policy Act (“CEPA”), (Connecticut General Statutes [“C.G.S.”],
               §§ 22a-1 through 22a-1h and Sections 22a-1a-1 through 22a-1a-12 of the
               Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies [hereinafter “RCSA”]).

Fact #14       The DEIE contained no selection criteria for the Preferred Alternative.

Fact #15       Following completion of a 45-day public comment period on December 28, 1998,
               the DECD forwarded the Record of Decision, dated March 1999, (“ROD”)
               including the DEIE to the Connecticut Office of Policy and Management
               (“OPM”).

Fact #16       In February 1999, the NLDC prepared the document entitled “Selection of and
               Rationale for the Preferred Alternative – Fort Trumbull Area, New London,
               Connecticut” without benefit of public comment.

Fact #17       The DECD never approved nor published notice for a Final Environmental
               Impact Evaluation (“FEIE”).

IV.            The Municipal Development Plan

Fact #18       The NLDC drafted the MDP pursuant to Chapters 130, 132 and 588l as required
               by resolution of the New London City Council.

Fact #19       About January 13, 2000: The NLDC and the New London Redevelopment
               Agency (NLRA) held a joint public hearing on the MDP.

Fact #20       On or about January 14, 2000, the NLRA, adopted the MDP as its redevelopment
               plan pursuant to C.G.S, section 8-124 et seq.

Fact #21       About January 18, 2000: The City of New London, acting by and through its
               City Council, approved the MDP.




                                                7
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


Fact #22       By Council resolution, the NLDC is the implementing agent for the City of New
               London.

Fact #23       The City of New London created a Plan of Conservation and Development but
               failed to consider the Connecticut Plan in its preparation according to CGS,
               section 8-23(c)(5) and note any inconsistencies with the Connecticut Plan
               according to CGS, section 8-23(d)(1)(E).

Fact #24       The Connecticut General Statutes, sections 8-189(f) and 32-224(b)(6) mandate ”a
               plan for relocating project-area occupants.” The DECD and the New London
               Development Corporation (“NLDC”) never developed a Relocation Plan for
               projected dispossessed residents even though E-mails that I requested under the
               Freedom of Information Act clearly established that DECD knowingly intended to
               ignore the requirements.

IV.            Consistency With The Connecticut Plan

Fact #25       The Connecticut General Statutes, sec. 22a-1e requires:

               “The Office of Policy and Management shall review all environmental impact
               evaluations together with the comments and responses thereon, and shall make a
               written determination as to whether such evaluation satisfies the requirements of
               this part and regulations adopted pursuant thereto, which determination shall be
               made public and forwarded to the agency, department or institution preparing
               such evaluation. Such determination may require the revision of any evaluation
               found to be inadequate. Any member of the Office of Policy and Management
               which has prepared an evaluation and submitted it for review shall not participate
               in the decision of the office on such evaluation. The sponsoring agency shall take
               into account all public and agency comments when making its final decision on
               the proposed action.”

               The OPM’s determination of the Development Plan as being non-inimical to
               state-wide planning objectives established in Connecticut’s Plan for Conservation
               and Development are incontrovertibly inconsistent with the facts and truth from a
               comprehensive analysis of the state’s Plan. For example, the Develop Plan does
               not give “highest priority to water-dependent uses,” a goal of the Connecticut
               Plan; instead, the predominant uses and the greatest area of land coverage is for
               water-enhanced uses (i.e., hotel, office building, museum, etc.) prohibited by the
               Connecticut Coastal Management Act.

Fact #26       The Connecticut General Assembly in accordance with CGS, section 16a-24
               through 16-33 required OPM to develop the (Draft) State of Connecticut Policies


                                               8
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


               Plan for Conservation and Development, 1998-2003 (“Connecticut Plan”)
               statement of the growth, resource management, public investment policies and the
               Plan provides a policy and planning framework for the administrative and
               programmatic actions and capital and operational investment decisions of state
               government, which influence the future growth and development of the state -
               simply stated the objective of this plan is to guide a balanced response to human,
               environmental, and economic needs in a manner which best suits the future of
               Connecticut.

Fact #27       The C.G.S, sections 8-189 and 32-224 required DECD determine the inimicalness
               of the MDP with the Connecticut Plan.

Fact #28       State statutes and RCSA only concern an EIE (i.e., assumed Final EIE) and there
               are no provisions concerning a draft EIE process.

Fact #29       OPM made findings only concerning the DEIE.

Fact #30       About April 19, 1999: The OPM found the DEIE complied with CGS, sections
               22a-1 through 22a-1h and OPM’s approval was contingent upon the DECD
               addressing specific issues in the MDP related to adequate civil preparedness,
               flood plain and coastal management policies and regulations as they pertained to
               the future proposed development of the project area.

Fact #31       April 14, 1999: Jane Stahl, Assistant Commissioner of the Department of
               Environmental Protection (“DEP”) asserted in the dated letter to Marc J. Ryan,
               Secretary of OPM the following:

               [S]pecifically, coastal management policies with which all state actions must
               comply discourage the endangerment of live and property by placing
               inappropriate uses in flood hazard areas. In addition, state flood management
               statutes disallow intensive uses in flood zones. These standards militate against
               the placement of residential uses in flood hazard areas or, at a minimum, an
               increase in such uses without a concomitant increase in access and egress of
               residential users in flood events. Based upon our review of the information
               provided, we are disappointed to see an apparent increase in residential uses in
               the floodplain and a lack of commitment to locate the proposed hotel outside of
               the floodplain even though such location is possible. The proposed residences
               and hotel (considered a residential use) constitute an intensive use of this
               floodplain area due, in part, to people‟s presence throughout the day. In this
               case, it is important to note, that activities in the flood zone east of the railroad
               tracks (with very limited evacuation routes which are themselves subject to
               flooding) are considered more intensive then they would be if located to the west


                                                 9
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


               of the railroad tracks, where access during flooding events is not an issue. Also,
               as noted in our comments, the use of fill to raise structures above the flood
               elevation is contrary to the State nonintensive use policy, again because it does
               not address the issue of access and egress; rather it would create isolated islands
               during flood events.

Fact #32       April 19, 1999: Leonard F. D’Amico, Undersecretary OPM-Policy Development
               and Planning Division in the dated letter to James F. Abromaitis, Commissioner
               DECD dated asserted:
               The C&D [Conservation and Development] Plan states that flood fringe
               development should be planned or supported only when “adequate civil
               preparedness (forecasting, notification, evacuation, sheltering) will ensure
               protection of life and continuance of essential services.‟“

Fact #33       The Flood Insurance Study, Supplement - Wave Height Analysis provided a
               history of flooding in New London since the 17th century. [Flood Insurance Rate
               Map: City of New London Connecticut, New London County. United States
               Federal Emergency Management Agency (“FEMA”), Washington, DC.
               Community Panel Number: 090100 0001C. Map revised August 18, 1985.]
               According to the Study, page 1, “the coast of Connecticut has experienced or has
               been threatened by hurricanes on 66 occasions. On nine of these occasions,
               severe tidal flooding occurred. The five greatest events were the hurricanes of
               1938, 1893, 1954, 1815 and 1944 (in descending order of magnitude). Damage
               caused by the hurricanes of 1938 and 1954 amounted to six million dollars and
               three million dollars respectively.”

Fact #34       “The maximum wave crest elevation affecting the New London shoreline from
               Long Island Sound to the Thames River is 15 feet.” [Kollmeyer, Ronald. 1987.
               New London Mills Marina Wave Climate and Design Wave Analysis. Addendum
               Report: Hurricane Intensity vs. Shorter Return Periods. Oceanographic Studies,
               Inc., Groton, CT. Prepared for DiCesare-Bentley Engineers. Inc.]

Fact #35       New London experienced category 4 hurricanes in 1938 and 1954. [Kollmeyer,
               Ronald, 1987.]

Fact #36       The Connecticut Office of Emergency Management prepared atlases in
               conjunction with FEMA identifying hurricane inundation and evacuation areas for
               category 1 and 2 hurricanes. The atlases classify the Fort Trumbull MDP area as
               an inundation and evacuation location.

Fact #37       The 1938 hurricane killed more than 600 people on the East Coast and caused
               property damage of approximately $3.2 billion (1987 dollars). “According to


                                               10
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


               Norbert Psuty, Director of the Center for Coastal and Environmental Studies at
               Rutgers University, the past 25 years have been a „low storm phase‟ for the East
               Coast, a lull that cannot last.” [Matthiessen, G.C., Dr., 1989. Planning for Sea
               Level Rise in Southern New England. Ocean Pond Corporation, N.Y. September
               1989.]

Fact #38       The United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) predicted a one (1)
               foot rise in sea level from climactic changes over the next fifty years and possibly
               1-3 feet over the next 100 years. [The Probability of Sea Level Rise. United
               States Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Policy, Planning and
               Evaluation, Washington, DC. EPA 230-R-95-008. October, 1995.]

Fact #39       Neither the DECD, NLDC nor DEP considered climatic change rises in sea level
               during the planning process.

Fact #40       Neither NLDC nor the City of New London or any of its agencies has an
               emergency Evacuation Plan for the Fort Trumbull area for protection against
               hazards to life. Although the MDP, section 5.5, page 5-60 provided a topic
               outline of an intended plan, no actual plan exists. There is sufficient information
               and knowledge concerning the City’s available resources, proposed land-uses in
               Fort Trumbull, previous extreme storm events to prepare a draft plan subject to
               revision as development details become firmer. The NLDC has not even made an
               effort to create such documentation in coordination with State Office of
               Emergency Management and local public safety officials.

Fact #41       On or about September 9, 1999, the OPM found the MDP was not inimical to
               statewide planning objectives and was contingent upon the granting of an
               exemption to Floodplain Management Certification by DEP pursuant to C.G.S.
               25-68(d), et seq.

Fact #42       Neither DECD, NLDC, the Connecticut Historical Commission, DEP, OPM,
               Department of Public Health and/or Department of Transportation provided any
               facts demonstrating consistency with specific provisions of the Connecticut Plan
               and supporting the conclusion of non-inimicableness to statewide planning
               program objectives as coordinated by OPM.

V.             Consistency With New London’s Plan of Conservation and development

Fact #43       Similarly, it has been clearly demonstrated by testimony that the Development
               Plan is inconsistent with New London’s Plan for Conservation and Development.
               The City’s Plan and its record of decision contains no evidence that it considered
               the Connecticut Plan as mandated by Connecticut General Statutes, sec. 8-23.


                                               11
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


VI.            Exemption From Floodplain Management Certification

Fact #44       October 5, 1999: Joseph DeSautel, President, Downes Group, a subsidiary of
               Downes Construction, threatened me at a meeting in his New Britain office with
               loss of my environmental consulting position to Downes if I opposed the
               application for exemption from floodplain management certification scheduled for
               a public hearing on October 6, 1999 before the DEP. Mr. Downes stated that it
               was a “done deal” based on his negotiations with Mr. Peter Ellef, Governor
               Rowland’s Chief of Stuff, DEP Commissioner Art Rocque and DECD
               Commissioner James Abromaitis.

Fact #45       October 6, 1999: At the DEP hearing, Commissioner Rocque served as Hearing
               Officer for only the second time in DEP’s history.

Fact #46       The Commissioner Rocque approved the exemption from floodplain management
               certification as expected. He refused during the hearing process to consider the
               application’s consistency with the Connecticut Coastal Management Act and the
               DEIE.

Fact #47       Commissioner conditioned the exemption upon the NLDC preparing a civil
               preparedness plan for evacuation of residents from Fort Trumbull during flooding.
               The NLDC never prepared such civil preparedness plan in the MDP and/or for
               public review/comment nor identified the criteria and standards applicable to its
               preparation.

VI.    Chronology of Eminent Domain Facts

Fact #48       1998 to 1999: Prior to approval of the MDP, NLDC’s staff commenced
               acquisition of property by threats of eminent domain takings and intimidation.
               Members of NLDC, who are real estate brokers, engage in the same inappropriate
               conduct.

Fact #49       January 2000: The Planning and Zoning Commission, Redevelopment Agency,
               City Council and New London Development Corporation approved the Fort
               Trumbull Municipal Development Plan. Also, the City transferred its power of
               eminent domain to NLDC authorizing it to make all decisions on redevelopment
               in Fort Trumbull, including how and when to trigger the use of eminent domain
               against homes and businesses as the City’s implementing agent. Gaudiani
               justifies use of eminent domain by claiming that “anything that’s working in
               our great nation is working because somebody left skin on the sidewalk.”




                                              12
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


Fact #50       May 8, 2000: The NLDC voted to begin taking 11 properties by eminent domain
               using CGS, section 48-6 et seq. instead of the City Charter. Section 48-6 created
               no statutory exception to eminent domain proceedings according to the
               Charter for acquisition of real property pursuant to CGS, Chapter 132 and
               588l.

Fact #51       Sept. 5, 2000: The City Council rescinded an earlier decision that prevented the
               NLDC from razing buildings in Parcel 4A where the city hopes a Coast Guard
               museum will be built.

Fact #52       Sept. 20, 2000: The Coalition to Save Fort Trumbull submitted a petition with
               more than 400 signatures to the City Council to save Fort Trumbull homes from
               demolition.

Fact #53       Oct. 2, 2000: The city's law director ruled that a petition asking for a referendum
               on Fort Trumbull demolition is invalid.

Fact #54       October 2000: The NLDC voted to use eminent domain to acquire the last 22
               properties it needs to transform the Fort Trumbull peninsula into a maritime
               village.

Fact #55       November 2000: The NLDC offered 11 property owners, including Susette Kelo
               and Matthew Dery, more than $2.7 million for their properties. They reject the
               offers.

Fact #56       Dec. 19, 2000: The Institute for Justice agreed to represent more than a half dozen
               Fort Trumbull residents in a lawsuit against the city and NLDC.

Fact #57       Feb. 21, 2001: The city, NLDC and property owners reached an agreement under
               which the Fort Trumbull residents will be able to stay in their homes while the
               eminent domain case is heard in court.

Fact #58       March 13, 2002: Connecticut Superior Court Judge Thomas J. Corradino rules on
               the eminent domain lawsuit.

Fact #59       March 18, 2002: Fort Trumbull property owners announced they would file an
               appeal with the state Supreme Court.

Fact #60       August 2002: The City and NLDC file appeal briefs asking the state Supreme
               Court to overturn the lower court ruling.




                                               13
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


Fact #61       October 2002: The City Council granted the NLDC a two-year extension of its
               eminent domain powers in Fort Trumbull area.

Fact #62       December 2002: State Supreme Court heard arguments in the eminent domain
               case.

Fact #63       March 3, 2004: The state Supreme Court affirmed NLDC's right to take property
               at Fort Trumbull by eminent domain.

Fact #64       Sept. 28, 2004: The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear Kelo et al v. City of New
               London, essentially deciding when governments may seize people's property for
               economic development projects.

VII.   Local Reuse Authority

Fact #65       1995: The City of New London established a LRA to plan for the redevelopment
               of the NUWC site.

Fact #66       May 1997: The planning LRA adopted an Amended Redevelopment and
               Implementation Strategy for the reuse of the 32 acre NUWC site.

Fact #67       A key element in redeveloping the NUWC site, under the original Redevelopment
               Strategy, involved the public sale of a significant portion of the property by the
               Department of the Navy. It was also recommended, if possible, that other portions
               of the site be transferred, under a Public Benefit Conveyance, to a state agency or
               the City of New London. This reliance on a public sale was recommended in
               order to minimize the financial risks associated with the City of New London
               acquiring a major portion of the site during an unsettled economic period.

Fact #68       February 1998: Pfizer Inc., which operates a large research facility across the
               Thames River in Groton, Connecticut announced its intention to construct a
               Global Development Facility on land directly south of the NUWC site. The
               facility would include approximately 800,000 square feet of office space and
               represent over $270 million in private investment. It is anticipated that 2,000+
               new jobs will be created at the Pfizer site. This decision by Pfizer was strongly
               influenced by political decisions and commitments made by the City of New
               London and the State of Connecticut to redevelop land adjacent to the proposed
               Pfizer site for hotel/conference, office and residential uses.

Fact #69       May 1998: The City Council designated the NLDC as its implementing agency,
               under Connecticut law, for the redevelopment of the Fort Trumbull peninsula,
               which surrounds and encompasses the NUWC property.


                                               14
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


Fact #70       May 1998: As a direct result of the Pfizer investment decision the New London
               City Council, authorized the reformed NLDC to prepare plans and establish
               boundaries for the redevelopment of land parcels adjacent to the Pfizer site[6].
               The Governor concurred in this effort and the State Bond Commission approved
               funding for the preparation of a Municipal Development Plan (MDP), in
               accordance with Connecticut statutes, and the acquisition of property.
               Subsequently, a 90-acre parcel, referred to as the Fort Trumbull MDP area, was
               identified for redevelopment. The NUWC site represents about 32 acres of the
               Fort Trumbull MDP area.

Fact #71       June 1998: The NUWC planning LRA requested that the public sale of property
               by the Department of the Navy be postponed in order to prepare a new land use
               plan for the NUWC site. An Amended Land Use Plan for the Naval Undersea
               Warfare Center was completed and officially adopted by the planning LRA in
               February 1999.

Fact #72       February 1999: The New London City Council also, endorsed the NLDC as the
               implementing LRA for the NUWC site.

VIII. Financing

Fact #73       Based on the proposed budgets of the Commissioner, State of Connecticut
               Department of Economic and Community ("DECD") for Fiscal Years 1998-2000,
               the General Assembly authorized the State Bond Commission to issue bonds for
               projects governed by the Connecticut General Statutes, Chapter 588l (Economic
               Development and Manufacturing Assistance). The Commissioner's budget
               requests provided no listing or details of any projects intended to receive such
               grants. I have a copy of the proposed budgets and the public acts authorizing the
               issuance of the bonds.

Fact #74       Upon application of the NLDC, the Commissioner requested and received
               authorization from the State Bond Commission to provide grants for the following
               project titles: New London Comprehensive Waterfront Improvement and
               Development Strategy, Fort Trumbull Site Preparation and Remediation, Fort
               Trumbull Road Improvements, Fort Trumbull Acquisition/Demolition
               Remediation and Fort Trumbull Municipal Development Plan Implementation #1.

Fact #75       As of December 14, 2000: DECD provided $28,766,000.00 in funds of the
               $33,383,000.00 authorized by the Bond Commission for NLDC's Fort Trumbull
               Municipal Development Project.

[6]    Originally, the MDP included Pfizer property, which it had removed because of liability fears from
       anticipated use of eminent domain.


                                                   15
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004




Fact #76       The NLDC prepared a DEIE and MDP for DECD under the C.G.S. Chapters 130
               (Redevelopment Act), 132 (Municipal Development Projects) and 588l. Since
               inception, all funding for the project has been under Chapter 588l with a
               miniscule level of funding under the Urban Action Program (C.G.S. section 4-66).

Fact #77       The CGS, Chapter 132 and 588l prohibited the acquisition of property in the Fort
               Trumbull area to implement the MDP prior to its approval by the Commissioner.
               Nevertheless, NLDC with DECD’s knowledge used the funds for the illegal
               acquisition of property before approval of the MDP.

Fact #78       The NLDC demolished most buildings in the Fort Trumbull peninsula
               (approximately 90 acres), including the former Naval Undersea Warfare Center,
               for the sole purpose of creating a Maritime Village District supporting Pfizer's
               Global Development Facility.

Fact #79       Although Chapter 588l permitted the acquisition of property by eminent domain,
               all Statements of Compensation filed with the New London Superior Court for
               taken properties clearly stated that NLDC used Chapter 132 as its funding source
               although it has never received Chapter 132 grants. Mr. Peter Lent, Financial
               Officer, DECD acknowledged the mixing of funds.

Fact #80       Moreover, the General Statutes mandates the State Bond Commission to insure
               that applications for state funds demonstrate consistency with the State of
               Connecticut Policies Plan for Conservation and Development. Nevertheless, in
               actuality, there is no evidence or showing in any record of decision that DECD,
               NLDC nor any other state agency have provided any facts supporting the Office
               of Policy and Management's statement that the Application and the MDP are not
               inimical to state-wide planning objectives.

Fact #81       In 2000: I filed a complaint with the Democratic State Auditor, Mr. Kevin
               Johnston regarding the misapplication and earmarking of legislatively
               appropriated and funded Chapter 588l funds as Chapter 132 funds. Mr. Johnston
               acknowledged the problematical issue. It is my understanding that DECD would
               like a legal opinion from the AG.

Fact #82       Thereafter, Mr. Johnston sent a letter to Attorney General Blumenthal requesting
               a legal opinion, which has not been forthcoming to date[7]. It is my
               understanding that DECD would like a legal opinion from the AG, who may have


[7]    The Attorney General officiated at the wedding of Mr. Damon Hemmerdinger to the daughter of a
       prominent Democrat, who is a personal friend.


                                                16
Governor Jodi Rell
Fort Trumbull Facts and Issues
Dec. 16, 2004


               a conflict of interest in this matter because of a personal relationship with a
               former staff member and subsequent consultant to the NLDC.

Fact #83       In 2000 and 2001: I sent two letters to Representative Andrea Stillman, Co-Chair
               of Finance, Revenue and Bonding Subcommitee of the Appropriations Committee
               regarding the misapplication of Chapter 588l funds as identified above.
               Representative Stillman on both occasions requested a response in letters to Marc
               Ryan, Secretary of OPM to my assertions. None has been forthcoming to date
               from Mr. Ryan and Rep. Stillman refused to pursue the matter for her own
               edification.

IX             Planning and Zoning Commission

Fact #84       1997-2002: The former Chairman, Planning and Zoning Commission met with
               two (2) key City Council members regarding his reappointment. The Council
               reappointed him upon the secret assurance to both members of passage of the
               MDP and the proposed uses for Fort Trumbull. The Chairman, also, held the
               position of ad-hoc member of the NLDC Board of Directors, who relinquished his
               seat upon prodding from the Director Law. He along with at least one other
               member engaged in improper and illegal regular discussions with Dr. Gaudiani
               and Corcoran Jennison representatives during pending applications by NLDC and
               the developer for determination of consistency with the New London Plan of
               Conservation and Development, zone change, special use permits, sec. 8-24
               referrals and approval of coastal site plans. Yet, he actively participated in
               rubber- stamping all determinations and decisions.


Cordially yours,



__________________________
Robert Fromer

Cc: Robert R. Albright, Lally School of Management and Technology,
     Rensselaer Polytechnic University
     Morgan McGinley, Editorial Page Editor, Day newspaper




                                              17

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Shared By:
Categories:
Stats:
views:80
posted:4/29/2010
language:English
pages:17