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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on May 4, 2011 6:39 AM. The previous post in this blog was What recession? Let's build more apartments with tax dollars.. The next post in this blog is John Kroger just sent out a press release on FarmVille. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Details breaking on state facilities scandal

Apparently it has to do with a sweetheart consulting contract between the Oregon facilities division and someone who used to be on its payroll as a manager.

Apparently she was not sufficiently well connected to get away with it for more than a couple of years.

Comments (19)

You mean kinda like the PWB employee that went to work for the eng consulting firm that is trying to get the gig putting reservoir covers in for PWB?

Or did you mean like Charlie Hales trying to sell streetcars to Portland after he worked here?

Or did you mean like Cylvia using here boyfriend to pull strings to get her a contract?

Or like OUS Chancellor Pernsteiner using state money to pay his mortgage and breakfast? Or former UO President Frohnmayer getting $35,000 in retroactive summer pay?

Or like SWNI Committee Chair spending SWNI money buying food and beverages for a paty after SWNI adopts a "no SWNI money for parties" rule while SWNI is technically banknupt or and can't repay its constituentNeighborhood Associations forr funds they put with SWNI fo "safekeeping"?

Or how about Metro Zoo laundering money from Zoo gate fees to the Zoo Foundation to then donate it back to the Zoo to avoid excise taxes and spending guidelines?

Or COSA getting payments from ODE without any contracts? Then making them up after being caught?

Or the PDC paying Homer $6.3 million by laundering it through a "loan" to no one for buying 100 parking spaces?

A loan that literally has no requirement to be ever paid back.

Or how about Portland vendor & friend Group McKenzie getting the Holman Building on the East Bank of the Willamette for $300k after the PDC bought it and improved it for $2.6 million.

That's just from memory off the top of my cynic's head.

Government will Never be the solution, and as they continue to out number us will do as they please.

And so many people still think that the government is full of altruistic angles that will run herd on the greedy capitalists.

Or how about taking a very close look at the Portland Water Bureau and their contracts and consultants and how that EPA LT2 Rule was lobbied for and just who stands to benefit from our rates going up 85% in the next five years??

A very close look indeed, how about some whistle blowers, retired?? The PWB is making it more difficult for citizens to get information.

Nonnie Mouse,

Speaking of SWNI, is there any news more current on the alleged embezzlement from that arm of the Office of Neighborhood Interference (ONI) than this January 21st report:

"The Portland Police Bureau is investigating allegations that a former employee embezzled from the nonprofit community coalition Southwest Neighborhood Inc.

In mid-October, police became aware of possible wrongdoing, said spokeswoman Lt. Kelli Sheffer, who confirmed the investigation Friday. But citing the ongoing investigation, she wouldn't speak to specifics of the investigation, including naming the suspect or identifying the person's role in the organization. No arrests have been made."
http://www.oregonlive.com/portland/index.ssf/2011/01/police_investigating_allegatio.html

Or did you mean like Charlie Hales trying to sell streetcars to Portland after he worked here?

Selling streetcars to other municipalities with financial problems not as easy now?
A more secure gig for Hales, should he decide to run for Mayor?

Or kind like in the O this morning where CoP all of a sudden is flush with money, while our cost of flushing has gone up 50%+ in two years?

Or maybe like this $1.789 million contract between UO and Huron Consulting?

http://www.uomatters.com/2011/04/just-dont-make-johnson-hall-look-bad.html

I saw a bumper sticker recently that said...
"If you think you can trust the government, ask an Indian".

Gardiner Menefree --

SWNI is not aprt of ONI.

Whether its an "arm" of ONI is open to debate.

See is yoou can get Jack to send mee yoiu E mail address.

Nonny,

Here's how the O described the relationship:

"Southwest Neighborhood Inc. is one of seven independent neighborhood coalitions funded by the Portland Office of Neighborhood Involvement. Commonly known as SWNI, the group received more than $260,000 from the city this fiscal year.

The organization, which has two full-time and two part-time employees, educates and works with 17 volunteer-based neighborhood associations to connect them with city government.

Each coalition, like SWNI, is independent from the city and handles its own operations -- such as programs and finances."

Here's how the PTrib describes the relationship:

"From an office based at the Multnomah Arts Center, SWNI operates under the auspices of the city’s Office of Neighborhood Involvement. SWNI receives an annual grant of $263,806 from the city, about 74 percent of its operating budget, Bogert says."
http://www.portlandtribune.com/news/story_2nd.php?story_id=129608235570211400

Would you say that SWNI could not exist without ONI, somewhat like an arm cannot continue (barring an intentional transplant) without the body from which it has been removed?

From my experience with SEUL, including "independent" in the description of the "coalitions" is fanciful. SEUL's purpose is to promulgate notions from the city's bureaus in designated neighborhoods; it does not serve as a vehicle to communicate neighborhoods' needs and interests to the city's bureaus.

I remain curious about the alleged embezzlement, which appears to have been a popular felony in various levels of government in OR during the past several years.

Ben:

Your statement about Group MacKenzie is incorrect which makes me wonder about your other comments that you are taking off the top of your head. Group MacKenzie is a tenant of the building just like the rowing club, the restaurant, and ProAxis. Also the way in which you frame your comment makes it sound like Group MacKenzie benefits from contracts with the city of PDX, which if you take the time to visit their website, you will find little if any CoP projects.

What I really, really, really want to know is what are the qualifications of Robin Harpster (sp?)? Where does the State find these peeps?? I was in a Facilities Management Director's position at public service employers for over 30 years total and I never ever considered or would even encourage a manager reporting to me to even consider this kind of trick. Quick termination....plz.

Stop giving more examples. Bojack.org doesn't have the bandwidth.

teresa,

If you're going to wade into where you can't swim you should google a little better first.
You see I didn't just hear something sometime and got confused. I followed the Holman building all along the PDC way.
My old desk top PC is full of every chapter.

Group McKenzie has certainly done a lot of work for the city.

And they benefited greatly when their former headquarters/property in SoWa got rezoned for high rises.

Something their President Eric Saito was helpful in achieving as Chair of the SoWa Citizens Urban Renewal Advisory Committee.

The PDC did in fact have around $2.6 million into the Holman Building when they sold it to Group McKenzie.

Quick Google found this one of many.

DDA approved for $12M Holman Building Renovation
By Brian K. Miller PORTLAND-The disposition and development agreement calls for the owners of Portland-based Group MacKenzie and Lake Oswego, OR-based Coaxis to purchase the 91,000-sf building for $200,000 and then spend $8.6 million--in concert with up to $3 million in public subsidies--to renovate the upper floors for use as their companies' headquarters.

I'll go further and say the city also handed over in the deal space for the Willamette River Keepers and the rowing rowing club.

Nice way to grow support and cooperation. Pay for it with tax money.

"Stop giving more examples."

You're right, why waste bandwidth? THere is not one thing govt will do about all or any of this besides bury it.

NO one will get fired, no one will get a cut in pay or benes, we'll just keep spedning all our time on 5 or 10 cent bottle bills.


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