What?! Government officials are getting bribed? .... Fall River wants in on that action.
A few months ago I read an article in the Providence Journal titled something like "City Councilors Arrested by FBI on Bribery Charges." I clicked on the article hoping it wasn't Fall River but with a suspicion that it was. It was not Fall River, it was North Providence so that was a bit of a relief.
The ProJo article told the tale of 3 North Providence city council members and a developer by the name of Richard Baccari. The councilors agreed to change zoning laws for Baccari's development in exchange for $25,000.
Having recently been implicated in a $25,000 bribery scheme, any sensible government officials would probably hesitate to deal with Baccari. But not our dear FROED/Ken Fiola/RDA/Mayor Flanagan. They have proposed to build the UMass biopark on land Baccari owns in Freetown.
Last year, it was brought to my attention that the offramps being built to the biopark originally had a different plan. For some reason unknown to me, the plans for the offramp were changed so that they would run directly through Baccari's land in Freetown. And, that Baccari could potentially make alot of money as a result of the new plan for the offramps. I thought nothing of it at the time because the biopark was coming along as planned. In retrospect, the offramp plan changes certainly seem suspicious.
How convenient for this private developer Baccari, recently implicated in a government bribery scheme, that he could potentially make a ton of money with FROED's (and Will Flanagan too) help.
"Flanagan acknowledged business talks with the company’s Richard Baccari, the company’s president and CEO." Fall River Herald News July 23, 2010
"Baccari's relationships have always drawn the attention of law enforcement" Channel 10 I-team investigates