City Councilor and mayoral candidate Tito Jackson criticized Mayor Marty Walsh for the financial incentives the city offered GE during negotiations for the company’s headquarters in Boston.

“I think we went way too high on the incentives,” Jackson said during an appearance on Boston Public Radio today. “Boston is the best place for innovation in the whole world.”

The city started negotiations offering a property tax break of $8 to $12 million, but landed at a $25 million property tax break over 20 years. The state also offered $120 million in grants for public works and the construction of the headquarters.

“If we have money for GE, if we have money for the Olympics, and if we have money for Indy Car, we have money for young people to get a job,” said Jackson, criticizing Walsh's priorities.

Jackson discussed his past working in economic development for former Gov. Deval Patrick. He cited his experiences working with Google and Microsoft in the state, negotiating deals to bring them to Massachusetts.

“You know what we didn’t give them? We didn’t give them $100 million, $200 million to come here,” said Jackson, referring to the $120 million in grants offered by the state.

He pointed to what he says is a misallocation of funds, illustrated by an event during the negotiation process with GE that “tears up [his] heart.”

“The night that [GE] was proposing a publicly funded, city- and state-funded helicopter pad is the night that Mayor Walsh closed down Mattahunt School in Mattapan, a neighborhood that is underserved by schools,” he said.

GE eventually decided not to forge ahead with the helipad, though it was a part of the incentives package.

Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson is running for Mayor of Boston. To learn more about his campaign go to