Former City Council staffer helping JPMorgan on new HQ approvals

Ramon Martinez was considered a key influencer with lawmakers

TRD New York /
Dec.December 10, 2018 09:30 AM

JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon and 270 Park Avenue (Credit: Getty Images and Google Maps)

JPMorgan’s got an ace up its sleeve when it comes to getting city approvals for its new Midtown headquarters.

The bank earlier this year hired Ramon Martinez, a veteran inside the halls of the City Council who is expected to play a role in helping the company secure permission to shrink the amount of public space required for its new Park Avenue office, Crain’s reported.

Martinez spent more than a decade at the Council, including runs as chief-of-staff to Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and her successor, Corey Johnson. He was widely regarded by insiders as a key influencer behind the scenes when it came to legislative priorities and which bills came up for a vote.

He resigned in the summer, which could limit how much contact he has at the Council on JPMorgan’s public-space issue. The city’s conflict-of-interest laws prohibit city employees from contacting anyone at their former agency for a year after they leave.

There’s an outside chance that JPMorgan’s application could get stretched out to the point where Martinez would be free to jump into negotiations. A spokesperson for the bank said it conferred with the Conflict of Interest Board before hiring Martinez.

Although the Midtown East rezoning allows projects like JPMorgan’s planned 2.5 million-square-foot tower at 270 Park Avenue to go ahead as-of-right, the bank needs a special approval from the city to shrink the amount of public space it’s legally required to provide.

JPMorgan argues that its site presents unusual conditions due to the fact that it sits over a cavernous train shed connecting to Grand Central Terminal. The local community board on Wednesday voted against the plan, arguing that the bank failed to look into all options to provide the required space, and hasn’t offered any compensation for the shortfall. [Crain’s] – Rich Bockmann


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
The Daily Digest - Tuesday

WeWork bonds hit low, new LLC legislation went farther than intended: Daily digest

An example of roll-off waste management (Credit: YouTube, iStock)

Big building owners prevent city from dumping container-pickup in trash-collection reform

“I can talk about erections all day”: NAR tech consultant’s bizarre fireside chat

Council member Vanessa Gibson (Credit: New York City Council)

Commercial landlords face new fines as City Council passes anti-harassment bill

As House begins impeachment inquiry, here’s what we know about Trump’s Ukraine-real estate ties

Embattled Prodigy Network CEO Rodrigo Niño to step down

Clockwise from top left: The Watchtower building at 25 Columbia Heights, Long Island University at 1 University Plaza, The Rheingold at 10 Montieth Street and 871 Bushwick Avenue in Brooklyn (Credit: Wikipedia and Google Maps)

These were the top 10 outer borough loans last month

The Watchtower building at 25 Columbia Heights, CIM Group’s Shaul Kuba (right) and LIVWRK’s Asher Abehsera (Credit: Wikipedia, CIM Group, and LinkedIn)

JPMorgan leads $335M refi for CIM and LIVWRK’s Watchtower renovation

arrow_forward_ios