By Julie Shapiro
LOWER MANHATTAN — Con Edison won a partial victory this week in the battle over millions of dollars of post-9/11 recovery money.
A deal approved by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation on Wednesday gives Con Ed and other utility companies an additional $119 million to compensate them for work they did following 9/11.
The deal also frees up $150 million for downtown community needs, including the World Trade Center performing arts center.
The compromise ends the months-long battle between Con Edison and Community Board 1 Chairwoman Julie Menin over the federal funds.
Menin, an LMDC board member, had argued that Con Edison should not receive another penny, since they had already gotten $164 million from the LMDC. Rather, Menin wanted all the money to go toward lower Manhattan projects like the arts center, the 9/11 memorial and affordable housing.
“The settlement gives the lion’s share of the money to the downtown community,” Menin said Wednesday. “I’m very pleased to see [that] happen.”
Con Edison also had to compromise. The company hoped to receive another $186 million from the LMDC and will now likely receive less than half that amount.
Michael Clendenin, a Con Ed spokesman, said the company might have to increase electricity rates to make up the difference.
Still, Clendenin called the deal “a positive sign for our customers” because the increase would likely be less than the $50 per household contemplated earlier this year.
Clendenin said Con Ed would continue negotiating with LMDC in hopes of receiving more money.