Friday, November 20, 2009

Comptroller Thompson Turns Down Brooklyn House of Detention Contract, Again

New York City Comptroller William C. Thompson, Jr. sent us a statement yesterday regarding his refusal to register the $34 million design contract at the Brooklyn House of Detention. This is the third time that Thompson has turned down the contract.

Here's part of his explanation:

"This boondoggle has been a disaster since day one. Whether the issue was the possibility of corruption in the vendor selection process, lack of community input or ballooning costs, we have clearly shown that this ill-advised project is fundamentally flawed. The money the city wants to spend on this contract would be far better used as a means to reduce class sizes and build more schools.”

Some problems outlined by the Comptroller are:

  • DDC did not properly issue the “Full scope of work” before the first stage evaluations of the proposals took place;
  • Some vendor evaluation sheets had altered scores, but lacked the required signatures by the evaluators who made the alterations;
  • DDC did not provide, as required, documentation that they successfully negotiated a fee with the vendor; and
  • The contract package that was submitted to the Comptroller for registration failed to provide proper signatures on most of the documents, including the contract itself.
According to the Daily News, a Bloomberg advisor said that Thompson had no grounds to block the contract - and would be "hauled into court" if he does. But Bloomberg himself took a softer stance, saying that "if [Thompson] has some real issues, we'll look into them."

In March, Kings County Supreme Court Justice Sylvia Hinds-Radix ruled that the city’s Department of Correction may go forward with its plan to "fully utilize" the Brooklyn House of Detention without going through environmental and land use reviews, according to the Brooklyn Eagle.

- Judge: Brooklyn House of Detention Can Reopen
- Brooklyn House of Detention Contract Rejected by Comptroller Thompson
- Anti-Jail Rally on Brooklyn Courthouse Steps Almost Didn't Happen
- 'Stop the Brooklyn House of Detention' Rally
- Don't Get Your Pants In a Twist Over Brooklyn House of Detention, Says Eagle
- Brooklyn House of Detention, Now With Retail
- Goodbye Supersized, Butt Ugly Brooklyn House of Detention Condos, Hello Bigger Jail
- Brooklyn House of Detention Forum Thursday -- Commissioner Horn Will Answer All Your Questions
- House of Detention Site May Be 'Most Valuable Square Block in Downtown Brooklyn'
- Brooklyn House of Detention Could Get 'Super-sized'

Photo by MK Metz

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

To be clear, the Judge's ruling that the jail could be fully utilized without environmental review went on to specify that the plans to DOUBLE the size of the jail could NOT go forward WITHOUT environmental review. If the city awards this contract it is signalling its intention to proceed with expansion and would then be subject to ULURP, according to the judge. She said you couldn't separate the two. The city is pretending it just didn't hear that part. Thompson has better hearing.