Rep. O’Neill: Change CT Law to Restrict Huge Bonuses to AIG Execs; Protect Taxpayers

The Connecticut General Assembly must act decisively to change state laws cited by insurance giant AIG to justify $165 million in outrageous bonuses approved for employees who were largely responsible for decisions that led to the company’s financial implosion, state Representative Arthur J. O’Neill said today.

“We will be offering a proposal next week when the state legislature convenes that will modify provisions of the Connecticut Wage Act that AIG cited as justification for proceeding with these outrageous bonuses. The company claims that under the law, failure to pay the bonuses could end up costing double the $165 million – and taxpayers would end up footing the bill,” said Representative O’Neill, r-69th District.

“The legislation we have prepared would prevent employees of institutions like AIG that receive federal stimulus funds from suing their employer for double damages if the failed company denies them bonuses promised prior to the firm’s financial collapse,” Representative O’Neill said. “Taxpayers are rightly outraged that their hard-earned dollars that were funneled to AIG to keep the company afloat would be used to pay millions in bonuses to executives whose bad decisions led to its financial implosion.”

The Republican proposal would amend the Connecticut Wage Act to prevent companies that receive federal bailout funds from citing the law as justification for paying exorbitant bonuses to executives whose actions were responsible for their employers’ financial demise, Representative O’Neill said.

House and Senate legislative leaders will offer their proposal during nextWednesday’s legislative session, Representative O’Neill said.

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