Stephen Ross Almost Fought Other Billionaire Over Construction Union Wages?

Ryan Glasspiegel

Stephen Ross, owner of the Miami Dolphins and a major booster for the University of Michigan, is a very big real estate guy in New York. He was at a meeting with another titan of that industry, Tishman Speyer CEO Rob Speyer. As a story in Crain’s New York goes, the two had to be separated after a discussion about tax exemptions and union wages got particularly contentious.

Basically, real estate developers got a tax exemption in New York City when they attached affordable housing to their projects. This program stopped at the beginning of the year when the construction union wanted higher wages for workers when their bosses got tax breaks and the real estate industry said nah. This brings us to a meeting on March 8th. Via Crain’s:

"At a meeting of the Real Estate Board of New York’s executive committee, a who’s who of landlords and top executives, Speyer asked if anyone in the room wanted to rekindle negotiations with the unions to try to hammer out an agreement and reinstate the program. Ross objected, said several people present. “Only you” want to restart the talks, Ross said to Speyer, according to three witnesses. Speyer, REBNY’s chairman for the past three years, had tried  for months to negotiate a deal before the 421-a program expired. Speyer was infuriated by the remark. After the meeting was adjourned, Speyer marched over to Ross, and as the pair began arguing, Ross jumped out of his seat. “This isn’t the NFL,” screamed Ross, who owns the Miami Dolphins. “I’m not going to be pushed around.”"

And then, near fisticuffs. Video of this sure would be swell.

PS – When was Ross jobbed by the league? Bullygate? Any other times?