A published report this past weekend said the Port Authority of New York and Jersey sold the naming rights of the World Trade Center to a nonprofit more than a quarter century ago for $10, and is now paying thousands of dollars a year to use the name.
The Record newspaper of New Jersey reported that a contract shows the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey sold the rights to the World Trade Centers Association in 1986. The newspaper obtained the contract through a Freedom of Information Act request.
The newspaper reported Sunday that the Port Authority pays $10,000 a year to use the words “World Trade Center,” including on merchandise it plans to sell in the new World Trade Center currently under construction. Those sales could bring the Port Authority an estimated $23 million to $28 million annually.
In exchange for the Port Authority’s use of the trademark, the WTCA is requesting free office space at the new World Trade Center site worth an estimated $585,000 per year, according to documents obtained by the newspaper.
Current Port Authority deputy executive director Bill Baroni said he was troubled by the revelations.
“I am gravely concerned that a secret deal, years ago, sold the name of the World Trade Center for 10 bucks,” Baroni told the newspaper. “And I’m going to look into the initial contract and look into where we are today with regard to this organization.”
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