Business

Liu Blasts ‘Sweetheart’ Deal Marriott Got With NYC

City Comptroller John Liu in front of the Marriott Marquis hotel - Feb. 12, 2013 (credit: Marla Diamond / WCBS 880)

City Comptroller John Liu in front of the Marriott Marquis hotel – Feb. 12, 2013 (credit: Marla Diamond / WCBS 880)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - A deal from 15 years ago has been discovered and it has the New York City Comptroller enraged.

John Liu said Tuesday that he found a lease signed by the Giuliani administration in 1998 that allows Marriott to buy the Times Square property its Marquis hotel sits on from the city for $20 million – one tenth of its current value.

“This EDC [Economic Development Corporation] Marriott deal was the most lopsided transaction since Manhattan was sold for $24,” Liu told reporters.

“The EDC betrayed its fiduciary responsibility to act in taxpayers’ interest when it recommended this sweetheart deal to the City in 1998,” Liu said on in a statement.

He said the land is currently valued at about $193 million and urged the city to renegotiate.

“And do what it can to recoup some of that if not all of the $345 million that taxpayers have lost to this boondoggle,” he said.

That number comes from lost rent and proceeds from the sale of the property.

Marriott and the mayor’s office dispute the audit’s finding saying it fails to measure the economic impact the Marriott Marquis has had on the area.