Bilking Builder Bets on Arnold

Published on

A Los Angeles jury just found
that construction giant and Arnold inauguration donor Tutor-Saliba
Corporation double-billed the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) when
it built LA’s Red Line Metro and ordered the company to pay a penalty of $450,000.

Tutor-Saliba may not have fared well in court, but the company is
hoping to win over the Gov with campaign contributions. The company,
which was also a $50,000 donor to the massive infrastructure bond
measures on the November ballot and will undoubtedly seek contracts for
bond-funded work, recently gave Arnold’s inauguration party fund
$15,000. Other Schwarzenegger campaign committees have received $47,300
from Tutor-Saliba.

The verdict against the Tutor-Saliba is not the first time the
construction firm was caught gouging the government. Last February it
agreed to pay $19 million to settle claims
that it overcharged for building the international terminal at San
Francisco’s airport and violated city minority-contracting laws. Other
claims against the company from the 10-year old MTA project are still

The construction firm is kicking in to the inauguration bash in order
to help pave the way to get a fat contract from the state to build (and
pave) some new highways and other infrastructure projects. The $100,000
plus it has put up for the bonds and given to Arnold will pay for
itself many times over if they get a slice of the bonds. And then
they’ll bill California twice for their work. Arnold should return
contributions from any donor found to be bilking the taxpayers. He can
start by returning the Tutor-Saliba money.

Consumer Watchdog
Consumer Watchdog
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