OutrAIGous: Politicians Fuming as AIG Blames CT

Connecticut politicians are outraged that insurance giant AIG would cite a state law claiming the bailed-out company is 'required' to pay out $165 million in bonuses.

American International Group, which has its financial products division headquartered in Wilton, is shielding itself behind the Connecticut Wage Act.  AIG said if they did not make the payout it would have cost taxpayers double the $165 million.  AIG has already received $170 million in federal bailout money.

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal called this a “joke of justification for squandering scarce taxpayer resources”.

In a statement, Governor M. Jodi Rell said, “The fact that AIG would even consider paying bonuses of any kind out of taxpayers funds is appalling, especially when it was AIG’s greed that led to the business failure that necessitated a federal bailout in the first place.”

Connecticut lawmakers now want to make a change to the Connecticut Wage Act to exempt bonuses to prevent this from happening again.

“We want to take away their justification for using Connecticut law to spend hundreds of millions to those responsible for this financial disaster,” said House Minority Leader Lawrence Cafero Jr.

Rell agrees with this movement, “I strongly support legislation that would prohibit entities which receive federal or state bailout money from using those funds for excessive bonuses or payouts similar to AIG’s outrageous attempt at self-enrichment.”

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