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Resource ID: #26188
Subject: Government
Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Date: 2013-06-16



An investigation into a Missouri incentive program for brownfield redevelopment found that for several years, an environmental firm and major political donor was hired for all taxpayer-funded cleanups without public competitive bidding, and was typically allowed to operate as consultant and contractor. For the taxpayer-funded cleanup of an abandoned mall near St. Louis, the firm vastly overestimated quantities of hazardous waste, helping the developer secure more than $7 million in brownfield tax credits, and hired itself for the job. The firm told the state it was the low bidder for asbestos removal even though one of the bids came in lower. The program is now under investigation by the state auditor, and the state has delayed issuing the tax credit and reduced the maximum amount that could be paid by $288,000.

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