Insurer will pay Connecticut for storm drain problem

John O'Brien Mar. 26, 2007, 1:26pm


HARTFORD, Conn. - United States Fidelity & Guaranty, a division of St. Paul Travelers, will pay the State of Connecticut $17.5 million to finish a storm-drain project, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal announced Thursday.

USF&G provided the performance bond of L.G. DeFelice, which, the state says, installed defective storm drains on Interstate-84.

"This money will help finish the job -- redoing and repairing incompetent or possibly corrupt work -- but we will aggressively act against anyone who should be held accountable for this construction debacle," Blumenthal said.

"Only the insurer is paying today. Others responsible will be targeted and pursued for recovery."

Bumenthal added that taxpayer money that nearly "disappeared down the drain" will be restored as a result.

"Inept, improper work installing and inspecting I-84 storm drains threatens huge financial costs and highway safety," he added.

Gov. M. Jodi Rell and the Department of Transportation joined in the announcement.

"There has been a pileup of problems in this roadway - unrelated to weather. My office is exploring all options - including legal action against other individuals and companies, including DeFelice and the Maguire Group - to recoup additional funds," Blumenthal said.

Maguire Group was hired to inspect the project and ensure contractual compliance.

Last August, Blumenthal and the attorneys general of Illinois and New York reached a $77 million settlement of bid-rigging allegations. Blumenthal's office received $8 million in penalties.

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