Pittsburgh Airport Wants More $ from CONSOL…After Accepting Bid

The story of the Pittsburgh International Airport’s acceptance of a bid from natural gas driller CONSOL Energy to drill on and under airport property, a bid that would provide less than half the money that a bid from EQT would have provided, continues to get curiouser and curiouser (see Inside Job? Pittsburgh Airport Leases Land to CONSOL for background and MDN’s original comments).

Apparently MDN isn’t, as we had thought, the only one who noticed this deal smells to high heaven. The latest news: PIA is negotiating with CONSOL to get them to raise the signing bonus, which is now rumored to be somewhere in the neighborhood of “$35 million to $40 million.” That’s certainly better, but still not has high as EQT’s offer of a $44 million bonus payment.

And what’s with “negotiating” after a bid has been accepted? A bid is a bid—you accept or reject it, especially if a public agency is involved. You don’t accept an offer and then promptly start negotiating to change it! Something is still very “off” about all of this…

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