The bitter month-long dispute between the University and a local property manager came to an end last week with Yale’s termination of the contract between the two parties.
Last Tuesday, the University notified Schiavone Management Co. that its contract to manage properties on Chapel Street was being terminated, effective March 31. This decision came only two years into a 10-year contract with Schiavone Management and on the heels of the company’s filing two lawsuits against Yale.
The suits and the public attacks on the University amounted to a misrepresentation which warranted the termination of the contract, University spokesman Tom Conroy said.
“The contract was terminated for cause that involved a number of things, one of which was the misrepresentation to the public on behalf of Schiavone,” he said.
Conroy added he believes the majority of this misrepresentation came after Schiavone Management filed its first lawsuit against the University Feb. 12. In the suit, Schiavone Management accused the University of discrimination and of failing to pay fringe benefits to the company’s employees.
But Yale was also unsatisfied with the firm’s management of the properties themselves.
The contract “was also terminated, of course, for failure to live up to certain performance requirements in the contract. Obviously the University has had problems for a long time with the management of those properties” Conroy added.
Joel Schiavone ’58, an officer of the company, could not be reached for comment.
Off-Broadway Inc., the firm which assumed the duties of managing the Broadway properties after Schiavone Management was fired, will take over the Chapel Street properties at the end of the month. The University offered any employees whom Schiavone was forced to layoff as a result of the termination of the contract six week’s pay and an introduction to the new management company.
The termination notice brought to an end the bizarre deterioration of the relationship between the University and Schiavone. After the firm filed suit against Yale, officials at University Properties informed Schiavone Management Feb. 14 that it would no longer be allowed to manage properties on Broadway, which it had been managing without a contract.
The next day University employees entered Schiavone Management offices to remove files pertaining to the Broadway properties. As a result of this entrance and removal, Schiavone filed a second suit against the University and the director of University Properties, John Maturo, charging assault and theft. Yale responded with allegations that the suit was merely a campaign war tactic and without merit.
The termination notice ended formal relations between the firm and the University.
“All of that was unfortunate,” Conroy said. “But the bottom line is that Yale ended their work on Broadway and terminated this contract for cause that had to do with the quality of the management of those properties. It wasn’t in the best interest of those properties or New Haven the way they were being managed.”