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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Opposition to Bridgewater Move Growing

By Neena Satija

Opposition to Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s $115 million deal with Bridgewater Associates is growing, as observers charge that he is sidestepping state and local policies to move the country’s largest hedge fund from Westport to his hometown of Stamford. Image
This building off of Ford Road in Westport is one of five locations occupied by Bridgewater Associates in Westport. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for

Many in Stamford are incensed that no city officials, not even the mayor, knew of the deal with Bridgewater until it was announced last August. Critics also say the global investment company should not be getting state funds to build an office complex in a high-risk floodplain, in apparent violation of state environmental policies. They say the move shows that Bridgewater is getting special treatment when compared with agencies such as housing authorities, which have historically been unable to use state money to renovate housing projects in floodplains.

Malloy said on WNPR’s “Where We Live” Wednesday that the move saves jobs from potentially leaving the state, and could create as many as 1,000 more. “They were being courted by New Jersey and New York for the purposes of relocation out of Connecticut,” Malloy said. “That would have cost us tens of millions of dollars per year.”

But critics argue that economic development cannot be achieved at the expense of breaking the rules.

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