State Sen. Calls For G.E. Massachusetts Reimbursal To Go Toward Housatonic Cleanup

Feb 15, 2019

A Pittsfield state senator says his part of the state should benefit from the millions of dollars General Electric is giving back to Massachusetts.

G.E. announced this week it's reimbursing the state $87 million, part of an incentive deal reached three years ago that convinced the company to move its corporate headquarters from Fairfield, Connecticut, to Boston.

State Senator Adam Hinds says Massachusetts offered financial incentives at a time when the company was not moving forward with a $613 million cleanup of the Housatonic River. 

"I think, A, it's time for them to start moving," Hinds said. "And B, now that we have this opportunity with the $87 million, that they will be sending back to Massachusetts, why don't we apply that to the cleanup?"

G.E. declined to comment on Hinds's suggestion.

The cleanup plan has been appealed by G.E. and others, and is under mediation.

The EPA says G.E. is responsible to cover the costs of the cleanup. 

The company said it's keeping its corporate headquarters in Boston, but expects to have about 250 employees there, rather than the 800 it originally projected. 

G.E. has spun off several of its companies in recent years. Its stock price plunged in 2017 and 2018, and has risen since the beginning of 2019.