Lieutenant Governor and former Rochester Mayor Bob Duffy spoke out for the first time about the purchase of PAETEC
Duffy says his team put a lot of hard work into bringing the company’s headquarters downtown. He says this was a move he never saw coming.
“I really don’t know how I feel yet until all the facts are in,” said Duffy.
Duffy says he found out about Arkansas based Windstream Corporations' acquisition of Paetec Monday morning. That’s when he reached out to PAETEC CEO Arunas Chesonis and Windstream’s CEO, Jeff Gardner.
“Certainly I had no knowledge of acquisition, no knowledge whatsoever, (of) specific acquisitions, discussions, negotiations,” said Duffy.
Duffy said he doesn’t understand how this could have happened.
“I had on my team some of the best business minds in Rochester, in terms of Tom Richards and Carlos Carballada, working on this back in 2007.
Duffy says once PAETEC officials signed a contract to build the company’s headquarters downtown back in December, he thought the agreement would stand even if an acquisition was offered.
“Once that contract was signed, I felt that whatever happened in the future, be it a year or ten years, that we were in a good place,” said Duffy.
The Lt. Governor says now the plan is to work with Windstream
“The CEO, Jeff Gardner, did not make any promises to me on the phone,” said Duffy.
That said, Gardner has five to six months to decide if Windstream wants to move forward and continue to build its headquarters in downtown Rochester.
“It is my hope that this project will stay on track. It is my hope that men and women will retain their jobs here,” said Duffy.
Duffy says no city money has been put into PAETEC. He says now he’ll be working with the Governor and local leaders on what to do next.