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Re: Kushner deal shines spotlight on Jersey City's struggling inner city
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Legal, but unethical: Jared Kushner's Jersey City gambit | Editorial

Updated on June 3, 2017 at 6:34 AM Posted on June 3, 2017 at 6:30 AM

BY STAR-LEDGER EDITORIAL BOARD eletters@starledger.com

Anyone who's ever driven through Jersey City will recognize the indecent absurdity of what Jared Kushner did to save millions on his luxury tower.

Or just read the reactions of people in its poorest neighborhoods, in the Washington Post or Jersey Journal: "It's like we're being used," one said.

These are the folks who are supposed to benefit from a federal program designed to boost development in blighted and rural areas, where jobs are scarce. Its purpose is to lure investors to needy neighborhoods where they wouldn't otherwise have built.

Not to give a multi-million-dollar discount to the presidential son-in-law's waterfront high-rise, in a booming downtown area, where monthly rent for a two-bedroom is as much as $5,300, and unemployment virtually nonexistent.

This new tower, 65 Bay Street, is located one of the New York area's hottest housing markets. Yet with a wink from state officials, Kushner and his partners availed themselves of the huge discounts provided by this federal program, by tinkering with city maps to qualify.

Like a politician gerrymandering his own district, they included far-flung, destitute areas like Greenville as supposed beneficiaries of this posh new apartment complex. And Bergen-Lafayette, where nearly 1 in 5 are jobless.

Is Kushner the first investor to do this? Of course not. But it's evidence that Trump's son-in-law and advisor is willing to exploit a loophole in a federal program to financially benefit himself - just as he's been exploiting loopholes in ethics laws to profit from his role in Trump's presidency.

Like Trump himself, Kushner has refused to divest in his family business. He's retained most of his holdings, "selling" some interests to his brother and a trust controlled by his mother, from whom he could simply get them back later.

That's a shell game, not a true blind trust, in which an independent party sells the assets and he can never retrieve them. So Kushner's still financially benefitting from his proximity to the presidency - and from Trump's policies, like his recent renewal of this EB-5 program, the benefit Kushner used in Jersey City.

It allows a wealthy foreigner who invests at least $500,000 in a project in a struggling, jobless area to get a fast-track residence visa. The developers also benefit, because the terms of the investment are better than what they'd get from a bank loan, saving them potential millions.

Kushner's now trying to pull the same thing for a pair of luxury towers in another rapidly-developing area of Jersey City, called Journal Square. To say this creates construction jobs misses the point: These fancy towers would have been built and the jobs created anyway, without any help from the EB-5 program.

Investments like Kushner's are why more deserving projects that do far more to create jobs in poor or rural areas don't get this benefit. And isn't that the America Trump's presidency was supposed to make great?

Trump called struggling Atlantic City his "cash cow," and considered his bankruptcies there a sign of success - because he came out richer. For Kushner, apparently, it's grabbing loans meant for the poorest areas in Jersey City.

http://www.nj.com/opinion/index.ssf/2 ... ners_jersey_city_sch.html

Posted on: 6/5 1:03
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Re: Kushner deal shines spotlight on Jersey City's struggling inner city
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Jersey City mostly mum on latest chapter in Kushner saga

Updated on June 1, 2017 at 6:33 PM Posted on June 1, 2017 at 6:06 PM

BY TERRENCE T. MCDONALD tmcdonald@jjournal.com
The Jersey Journal

JERSEY CITY -- City Hall was mostly silent today about the news that high unemployment in the city's south side was used to help Jared Kushner and the developers of Trump Bay Street win critical financing for the luxury high-rise.

City spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill said the city was not involved in the bit of so-called "gerrymandering" that allowed Kushner to cite the jobless rate in the city's impoverished areas to obtain federal approval for the 50-story tower.

Morrill did not respond when asked if the administration had any comment on the practice. Council President Rolando Lavarro said he wasn't aware of the details of the story.

"This is the first I've heard," Lavarro said. "I would have to do a little independent research on that."

Lavarro is also chair of the Jersey City Redevelopment Agency, which in April 2013 designated an LLC controlled in part by Kushner as the developer of Trump Bay Street, located at 65 Bay St. near the waterfront.

more:
http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/20 ... pter_in_kushner_saga.html

Posted on: 6/1 20:02
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Re: Kushner deal shines spotlight on Jersey City's struggling inner city
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If we're going to link inner city unemployment with JC construction shouldn't the focus be on the failed (and mandated) program portioning minority jobs and vendors to abated properties? Didn't Earl Morgan note that not a single minority was working at The Hub-with, what, 25 million dollars of JC money being spent?

But, hey, Fulop made JC a sanctuary city-no reason anyone wanting to invest 500K in JC should be denied sanctuary versus, say, someone swimming to the USA and getting sanctuary.

Posted on: 6/1 6:55
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Kushner deal shines spotlight on Jersey City's struggling inner city
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Kushner deal shines spotlight on Jersey City's struggling inner city

Updated on May 31, 2017 at 10:06 PM Posted on May 31, 2017 at 7:37 PM

BY TERRENCE T. MCDONALD tmcdonald@jjournal.com
The Jersey Journal

JERSEY CITY -- Oak Street is less than a three-mile drive from the Trump Bay Street luxury high-rise but it feels like another world entirely.

Daytime shootings are not uncommon here. Bags of garbage sit beside overflowing sidewalk trashcans. The street signs at Oak and Martin Luther King Drive is so faded you can't read the letters. Residents say the signs have been that way for two years.

But this neighborhood and similarly economically struggling areas nearby have an improbable link to Trump Bay Street, a 50-story high-rise developed in part by Kushner Companies, run by the family of presidential son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner. Documents show state officials allowed developers to cite the high unemployment in the city's southern areas like Oak Street to obtain foreign investment through a program intended to help rural areas and places with high unemployment.

More:
http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/20 ... on_jersey_citys_stru.html

Posted on: 5/31 22:22
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