Based on Harry's press release (see previous post), one would conclude that Mayor Tutunjian knew what he was talking about. The press release is detailed and specific. So, what exactly was Harry's basis for the press release? Here's some excerpts from the Mayor's deposition. Remember, he's under oath.
Q. Do you know what relationship, if any,
there is between a Broker of Record Letter
and an ability for an agent to receive a
commission and an insurance policy?
A. I don't know for sure.
Q. Do you know whether signing a Broker of
Record Letter on behalf of a particular
agent precludes or keeps another insurance
agent from performing that same function
for the City?
A. I don't know that for a fact. (p. 8)
Q. Is it your understanding that the insurance
policies were for one-year periods?
A. I believe so, yeah.
Q. And was it your understanding that any
increase or decrease in the cost of
insurance in a given year for the City of
Troy would be at or around the time those
policies were renewed or expired and
Q. Okay. Are you familiar with a term Request
For Quotations as opposed to Request For
A. I've heard that recently.
Q. Is it your understanding that a Request For
Quotations is a request for written
proposals for insurance quotes that the
City may or may not choose to use?
A. I'm not aware of that. I wasn't aware of
Q. And do you know approximately how many
different insurance agencies were
approached and asked to provide quotations
for the City to provide coverage for the
City for 2005?
Q. And do you know how many agents responded
to the Request For Quotations that provided
quotations to the City?
A. Not exactly, no.
Q. Do you know approximately how many?
A. No. A handful, I'm guessing. I don't
Q. In late 2004 -- let me just withdraw that.
Do you know if any insurance agents had
provided the City with quotations for
insurance in 2004 before you executed a
Broker of Record Letter?
A. I don't know that for a fact.
Q. Did you believe that any had provided
quotations for insurance before you executed
the Broker of Record Letter?
A. I believe there was responses to the
Requests For Proposals, but I never -- I'm
not aware of who or what the proposals were
or the details of them.
Q. Did you know at the time you executed the
Broker of Record Letter whether any of
those responses would save the City money
compared to the insurance costs for the
A. From the information that was provided to
me, I believed that we would be saving
Q. Mr. Mayor, do you know whether the
insurance policies that were obtained by
the City of Troy were the same policies
that were quoted by R. J. Carignan as a
result of the Requests For Quotation
proposal that was issued by the City of
A. I didn't know that.
Q. Do you know whether that is the case -- as
you sit here today, do you know whether or
not that's the case?
A. I'm told it is, but I didn't know that at
the time, yeah, I'm told it is.
Q. And what was your understanding in late
2004 how the Nicoll & MacChesney and
Marshall & Sterling insurance product would
save money as opposed to the policies that
had been identified by R. J. Carignan
through the RFQ process?
A. Again, my comptroller and corporation
counsel identified that they were able and
willing to save us money, and I was okay
with that, and that's why we went with them.
Q. That Nicoll & MacChesney and Marshall &
Sterling were able and willing to save the
City money compared to the work that had
been performed by R. J. Carignan?
A. At the time, I wasn't aware of any work or
anything of that nature. I just -- I'm not
-- I wasn't involved at that level of who
did what and how the process works.
Q. And who was involved at that level?
A. The corporation counsel and the
So, the policies that Troy eventually obtained were from the quotes received by Carignan. N&M did not secure the policies, but in some magical fashion, were able to save the City 65 large. That's some powerful mojo.
But, does Harry know if any money was saved or how it was saved?
Q. As you sit here today, do you have any
understanding as to whether or not the City
saved money by issuing a Broker of Record
Letter changing the insurance agent from
R. J. Carignan to Nicoll & MacChesney and
Marshall & Sterling?
A. I believe we saved money in our insurance
Q. And how?
A. How? The cost of our premiums. That's the
information I was given and that's what I
Q. So you believe as you sit here today that
Nicoll & MacChesney and Marshall & Sterling
were able to procure an insurance policy
for the City for insurance coverage for
2005 that saved the City approximately
A. From the information I've been given, the
policy, the way it was packaged, is the
word I'm using, I don't know what it means,
was able to save the City, you know, some
-- approximately $60,000.
Q. And was this information in writing at all?
A. I don't believe -- I don't know. I don't
know if it was in writing. It was
information I was given by my comptroller.
Wow! He believes they saved money because.....he was told they saved money. Harry got word from Corporation Counsel and the Comptroller that there would be a $65,000 savings and now merely parrots that back when questioned. A hands-on kind of guy to be sure.
The first problem for the city is apparent. Whoever obtained the quotes earned the commission. Thus, Carignan is entitled to the $30,000 commission that N&M received. But, we still have to clear up what Corporation Counsel and the Comprtoller told Big H.
Corporation Counsel Mitchell was scheduled to testify on the Thursday that depositions took place. He failed to show due to a "family emergency." A family emergency that still allowed him to be present for the City Council meeting that evening.
The Comptroller did testify. She tells an interesting story and is a bit more knowledgeable than the Mayor. We'll look at what she had to say, later this week. The "savings" by switching brokers, according to the Comptroller, is slightly more modest than $65,000.*
*The repackaging idea sounds good but what they are really talking about are options contained within a given policy: options that are available regardless of the broker. Incidentally, Carignan recommended the same options that N&M suggested a week before the Broker of Record Letter was signed.