City comptroller and mayoral hopeful John Liu is auditing an old deal between the Marriott Marquis in Times Square and the Giuliani administration, the New York Post reports.
According to Liu's auditors, the hotel owners will be able to buy the land under the hotel from the city for 10 percent of its value, due to a deal signed in 1998.
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Liu's office apparently discovered the deal — a revision to the hotel lease — while conducting a routine review of the hotel's rent payments.
The revision stipulated that the lease would be shortened by 40 years in exchange for the purchase of the land at $20 million.
Liu's estimates put the loss to taxpayers at $345 million, figuring the money lost over the shortened lease. He also charged that the hotel missed an interest payment in 1998, and therefore owes the city $3.6 million.
Mayoral spokeswoman Julie Wood called the audit "a joke," the Post reported.
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