Wednesday, June 26, 2013

PPUA "Enlightens" Reynolds...with both barrels!

Below is the PPUA response to Mr. Reynolds request for enlightenment.

Response to this from the Mayor's office....crickets!

PPUA-Response

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Reynolds Begs for Port Enlightenment

In a April 2013 email with the Co-Chair of the Pensacola Port Users Association, the City CAO Bill Reynolds begs for enlightenment on how the Port of Pensacola could be better used "given its location".

After Zimmerman is paid to market the Port, after the Port committee has adjourned, after screwing up project High Hat and after 2 years of Hayward leadership, the City's CAO still doesn't have a plan for the Port.

Sad but true!

Enlighten Me!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Studer is not familiar with the Vision Groupers

Quint Studer reached out to let me know that he was not familiar with the Vision Group.

Probably just Brian Spencer puffing and posturing for Quint and Jerry at his personal efforts at total world domination...or at least a utopian Seaside feel in downtown Pensacola.

Airstream diners...check.  Spencer gets paid.
New First Navy Bank will have that Seaside look...check.  Spencer gets paid.
Custom makeover for Penko building...check.  Spencer gets paid.
Recycled design of Alystock building for Maritime Place...check.  Spencer gets paid..
Remodel and open O'Rileys Irish Pub...Spencer opposes...Doesn't get paid.
Sound of the gulf crashing into the shore...nope, just Global 1200 purring like a kitten.

Welcome back Global!

This is one person's version of public private partnership.


Friday, June 21, 2013

Wagley Trys to Explain Vision Group Away

Christian Wagley, Restore Committee member and Vision Group participant posted a response to the email chain released regarding the Vision Group and attempted some spin control.

He minimizes the "Vision Group" and its efforts in "getting core members into appointed positions in cities,counties, CRAs, etc... This really shows you the system we are working in and you have to attack cancer from the inside with chemotherapy!" as Vision Grouper Alex Adams stated.

He doesn't address that one Vision Grouper Alan Gray was recently appointed as a City Planner for the City of Pensacola despite reportedly not being the top ranked applicant.

He doesn't address that the same Vision Grouper Alan Gray was Brian Spencer's water toter for the Government Street reopening.

He doesn't address how Vision Grouper Steve Dana and Jerry Pate Design have garnered numerous projects throughout Pensacola on a no-bid basis, as Mayoral dictates or when their bid was not the low bid.

He doesn't address how his group has "pressured politicians" as Vision Grouper  Alex Adams states.

He doesn't address who paid Vision Grouper Alex Adams and Steve Dana to meet with FDOT.  Did they travel on their own? Did Spencer pay?  Did the City pay? 

As much as Wagley tries to spin it.  The words of the Vision Groupers speak for themself.

And as much as he states that he was elected to serve on the Restore committee.  Isn't that exactly what the mission of the "Vision Group" is, to "get core members into appointed positions"

Wagley-Spin-Control

VISION GROUPER

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Wagley and the Vision Group?

I was really interested in the below string of emails.

Vision-Group

The Vision Group emails go to and between the following:

  • Brian Spencer
  • Alan Gray, Planner
  • Christian Wagley, Restore Committee Member
  • Steve Dana, Jerry Pate Companies
  • Alex Adams, Planner
  • Ben Nolan
The wider distribution included:
  • Jerry Pate
  • Travis Peterson
  • Quint Studer
  • Chuck Tessier
  • Andrew Rothfeder
The Mayor must have been blind copied on the email because he is not listed but this email came from his email harvest.

The group appears to be formed to funnel the State and Restore dollars into Downtown Pensacola development.  This group appears to be entirely FOR PROFIT.  As developers and planners these dollars will continue to increase the use of their services and their downtown investments.

The quotes that ring loudest to me are:

"I will tell you I've been in dozens of meetings with FDOT around the state and that was probably the best reception we could have expected. I want to thank everyone for their assistance and perseverance in not only submitting ideas, but pressuring local politicians, your bosses, associated organizations, friends to bring the leaders to the table and bring our ideas in front of the top leaders from FDOT and the City of Pensacola. It's taken over 8 months since we decided to tackle this project at that FDOT public meeting at the Pensacola Civic Center and we have come a long way towards organizing ourselves and influencing others. WELL DONE."

"The second item which we also have in Pensacola is getting core members into appointed positions in cities, counties, CRAs, etc... This really shows you the system we are working in and you have to attack cancer from the inside with chemotherapy! "

Questions: 

  • Is Christian Wagley who is on the Restore Committee a plant for the downtown development interests? 
  • Who is funding this group?
  • How are they getting access to FDOT and Secretary Barfield?
  • Who have they gotten appointed to City or County committees or offices?
Groups like this do not operate without funding!

Where does Brian Spencer draw the Line in his various roles?

In the email below, Brian Spencer, using his IPhone clearly mixes his roles in life.

Spencer for Hire

He signs his email 

Brian K. Spencer

Principal, SMP Architecture
Member of City Council, District 6
City of Pensacola

He is either using his City email account to promote his business or his business email account to conduct City business?

Wonder which it is?

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Gotta Do Barker's Job For Him

Dear Mr. Attention to Detail:

Please note:

  • Page 6 - You state that PC Wu is a Phd, Why not give Dr. Pratt her due? Why not Ms. Myers?  More Mayor's favorites?
  • Page 7 - Either capitalize Appendix or don't.
  • Page 8 - You don't say if you are submitting the budget as fiction or non-fiction. You did miss last year by over 30 million dollars.
  • Page 10 - You don't account for pages 345 and 346
  • Page 11 - Citizens of Pensacola should be above Members of the City Council See Page 35
  • Page 11 - Mayor should be capitalized.
  • Page 11 - Either capitalize City or don't.
  • Page 11 - You don't point out the major decrease in the budget is because the CFO misbudgeted revenues in gas.  You call it realignment.  Nice.  Good to blame global warming also.
  • Page 12 - You don't mention Air Tran will be dropping service.
  • Page 12,13,14,15 - Either capitalize City or don't.
  • Page 14 - Child safety has become a major focus?  Didn't you care before?
  • Page 15 - It's Ashton J, Hayward III.  Add the III
  • Page 18 - How much have you wasted over the years by not paying the pension contributions on October1? I don't think I would put this in writing.  Makes you look bad.
  • Page 18 - on the October 1...doesn't read right
  • Page 19 - 59 positions eliminated but 36 at the library?  If a business goes bankrupt does it state it cut its interest cost by defaulting on the debt?
  • Page 19 - Sustainability is misspelled.
  • Page 19 - Which is it:  Executive Assistant to Council or Council Executive?
More later

Why the Mayor lets him coast is beyond me.

Hayward Admits Wasting Your Money and Assumption is the Mother of All Screw Ups

Budget Page 19

When he came into office, Mayor Hayward immediately created 3 roles:

  • Chief of Staff - Spent $240,000 of our money on the role in his first 2 years
  • Executive Assistant to Chief of Staff - - Spent $120,000 of our money on the role in his first 2 years
  • Office of Economic Opportunities & Sustainability - Spent $200,000 of our money on the role in his first 2 years
In the 2014 budget, these jobs are eliminated after he wasted over half a million taxpayer dollars on the roles in his first 2 years.

Thanks Mayor!  Half a million would have:

  • Funded police or fire positions
  • Repaired Fire Station 3
  • Paved some streets
  • Reduced the tax burden of the Citizens
Hey, but it did allow John Asmar to allegedly harass your employees.  Worth it?

Budget Page 5

Goal:  Reach an agreement on pension reforms with the Firefighter's union, including the closure of the fire pension plan to new entrants.

Hmmm!  Wonder what the firefighters think of that one?

Any issues with this blog?

I received a report that someone had some strange issues occur when they loaded my blog. Has anyone had any issues?

LMK

Monday, June 17, 2013

With Little Fanfare the 2014 Proposed Budget has been put Online and delivered to Council

  • No State of the City
  • No press conferences
Check it out here

http://www.cityofpensacola.com/sites/cityofpensacola.com/files/files/finance/fy_14_draft_document_0.pdf

Spencer Continues to INSIST

Councilman Brian Spencer gets downright insistent with the Mayor and tries to get port director Clyde Mathis in trouble for his out of office reminder in this email rant about the Global 1200 and its generators.

Several noteworthy items:
  • When Spencer barks at 8:58pm, the Mayor responds at 8:59PM.  Does the rest of Council get responses this fast?
  • What a great idea to put one of the most ardent port opponents in a meeting with the Chief Engineer for one of the largest port customers.  Anyone see this as a good idea? Why not invite Professor Elebash?
  • The Mayor can meet the next day with Spencer but can't make scheduled meetings with the Port Users Association.
I was at the Wahoo's game last night and Global 1200 was in port and on generators again.  All I heard was the sound of investment in our City by INTERNATIONAL industry. Glad to have her home.

Spencer's gang of 8 or INTERNATIONAL investment in our city.  What does this Mayor really choose when the cameras are off?

Spencer Insists

Thursday, June 13, 2013

State Funded Port Improvements were a Promise to Spencer and Posse

In 2012, the Mayor touted $3.6 million in port grants including $800,000 for shore power.  Shore power allows ships to hook up and use Gulf Power instead of its internal generators.

http://www.pensacoladigest.com/2012/04/port-gets-3-6-million-for-improvements/

The $800,000 was primarily just to pacify Brian Spencer and his downtown posse who have often claimed that the ships at the port are loud and noisy.

The problem is that some ships either won't or can't use the shore power option.

Evidently, GLOBAL 1200, the enormous ship docked at the port numerous times, has an issue with shore power.

On March 29, 2013, Spencer dresses down the Mayor and Bill Reynolds regarding Global 1200 not using the shore power.

Please-explain

The Councilman demands an explanation and once again shows the State Funds were not to improve the services at the port, not for economic development, not to bring more jobs.

NO!  The $800,000 in funds were to appease Brain Spencer and his posse.

When these individuals purchased their downtown properties was there an industrial port downtown or did it come later?

I live in the flight path of Pensacola Intergalactic Spaceport.  Every night at 9:04pm the UPS monster jet takes off over my house.  Guess what?  I knew there was an airport there when we bought and I'm proud that business is in Pensacola.

Mayor Hayward will spare no taxpayer funded expense to appease his friends and supporters.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Jerry Pate Companies - You aren't going to believe this!

Jerry Pate owns at least 3 businesses that participated in the Maritime Park Project.
  1. Jerry Pate Design - Steve Dana, as a no-bid, Mayoral decree, was paid as the owner's rep on a contract passed through Hatch Mott McDonald http://www.scribd.com/doc/132227149/hayward-for-pate-pdf
  2. Jerry Pate Turf and Irrigation sold irrigation equipment and field maintenance equipment to the CMPA. http://www.scribd.com/doc/140269365/JP1
  3. Wausau Farms sold the grass to the CMPA.
Here is where it just gets ridiculous.

Below is an email from Brian Spencer lauding Steve Dana of Jerry Pate Design for reviewing the stadium playing field specification requirements which specified Wausau Farms as a provider and that Jerry Pate Turf and Irrigation provided equipment for.

Spencer even places the MAYOR as the person responsible for all of the Pate work at the CMP. The Mayor is copied on the incriminating document.

Dana-Approves
  • Did Wausau have inside knowledge on the budget and specs?
  • Did Jerry Pate Turf have inside knowledge on the budget and specs?
  • Did Steve Dana act as a contractor to the CMPA for Jerry Pate Turf at the same time he was the Owners Rep for the CMPA?
  • Isn't an owners rep supposed to be independent of the project?
  • Did Dana approve any payments to contractors who used Pate owned companies or directly for Pate owned companies?
Dana even has the nerve to point out that the specs misspelled Wausau.

Someone please pass out some subpoenas!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Project Festival. Asmar is Still Around??

Included in the emails provided by the City was an email from Clark Merritt detailing a meeting on Project Festival. 

The details of the memo state the attendees at the March 15, 2013 meeting were:
  1. John Asmar
  2. Scott Luth
  3. Clyde Mathis
  4. Amy Miller
Yet Aunt Ginny and the PNJ published on February 22, 2013 that Asmar resigned. http://www.pnj.com/article/20130222/NEWS01/130222011/John%20Asmar%20resigns%20as%20Pensacola%20mayor's%20chief%20of%20staff

Aunt Ginny even printed an Asmar viewpoint stating "I have expressed to Pensacola Mayor Ashton Hayward my desire to return to my private legal practice." https://www.citizen-times.com/article/DP/20130223/OPINION/302230011/Viewpoint-Pensacola-accomplished-much-two-years

On March 5, 2013, I was provided the alleged sexual harassment documents against John Asmar.

By March 12, 2013, I had posted all of the documents relating to Asmar's alleged sexual harassment.

But based on the March 15, 2013 meeting minutes, Mr. Asmar appears to be secretly still working for the Mayor.

With full knowledge of Mr. Asmar's alleged actions, the Mayor still feels Asmar is the best person to represent our City with potential new businesses.

Project-Festival-Memo-031813

Footnote:  I redacted the interested business details.

All part of the window dressing for the ongoing fairy tale.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Reynolds Warns of CRA Collapse

Bill Reynold's, CAO, minces no words in his assessment of the CRA issue. 

CRA-Collapse

What he offers however, is nothing in the way of what the MAYOR is doing to fix the issue.

But then again, his CFO created this crisis when he obligated the CITY instead of the CRA to the ECUA debt.

Below is a blog post from Rick's Blog from June 22, 2009

Staff proposes using General Funds for ECUA

There are three big items up for discussion during today’s committee meetings of the Pensacola City Council: billing non-profits for parades, compensation and benefit study, and amending the inter-local agreement with ECUA over demolishing the Main St. sewage plant.


The last item has attracted the ire of Council member Maren DeWeese. On her blog, DeWeese remind us that: “In 2007, the CRA entered into an agreement with ECUA to provide $19.5 million over a number of years to fund the portion of the wastewater treatment plant within the CRA. In his memo to Council, then City Manager Tom Bonfield expressly stated that under the agreement the City had no obligation to pay any amounts toward this agreement. The 2007 agreement stated that if CRA TIF funds were insufficient to cover the annual ECUA obligation (AFTER PAYMENT OF THE MARITIME PARK BONDS) then the amount due in that year would merely roll over to a year that additional TIF funds were available.”

City Finance Director Dick Barker wants to modify these provisions and instead use general fund dollars to pay the debt, if CRA funds aren’t sufficient.
Why? In lean budget times, the Council should be happy that the prior council reached such an agreement that delays any payment until the CRA has the funds.



Patti, Davis and Appleyard Aren't the RIGHT IMAGE for Pensacola

In September 2012, Air Tran's Inflight magazine did an article on Pensacola including highlighting locals with the caption:

A billion dollars a year of heritage requires passionate locals who truly embody the area's rich history.

The article had small interviews with Frank Patti, Maria Davis and John Appleyard regarding Pensacola's history.

Here is the link:


http://www.airtranmagazine.com/features/2012/10/local-faces-sep-2012

In October 2012, CAO Bill Reynolds, lashed out at Zimmerman Agency for the article.  Interesting quotes include:

"The article featured a small comment by the Mayor, and even more importantly the individuals who were highlighted did not portray the image that we as a city are looking for. All three are wonderful and well-respected, but do not give the youthful energy and vitality that we need to embrace. How the Mayor was not part of that effort I find deeply puzzling."

Bill is Disappointed!!

The Mayor isn't disappointed when Maria Davis arranges for him to travel to Spain to represent Pensacola or when she arranges for Spanish diplomats to visit our City.

The Mayor isn't disappointed when Joe Patti Seafood draw thousands of tourists from the surrounding area into downtown that would not come downtown except to get some seafood.

The Mayor isn't disappointed with Mr. Appleyard's vast contributions to documenting Pensacola's history when he constantly uses it in speeches.

But then again, press for Pensacola is all about the Mayor isn't it.  More Zimmerman to come.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Next week will be interesting.

I recently asked for some public records regarding the Mayor's "diligent efforts" regarding Southwest Airlines and any communications Southwest had with Derek Cosson.  Derek Cosson had ZERO (0) hits in his email account for Southwest Airlines.  But what was ever so interesting is that it appears that Derek Cosson did not review the Mayor's email harvest and now I get to share weeks worth of insight with the Citizens.

Over the next WEEKS, I will share:
  • How John Asmar was involved in Economic Development meetings AFTER he was "no longer with the City" and his sexual harassment allegations were fully documented and actually published.
  • How Brian Spencer is not just a Councilman but actually dictates to the Mayor.
  • How Steve Dana of Jerry Pate Design was allowed to review and comment on the design specifications for the stadium field and irrigation system subsequently won by Jerry Pate owned companies.  He even points out that the design spec team misspelled the Company name of the turf company his boss owns.
  • How Southwest execs were treated to golf with Mayoral BFF Jerry Pate and given helicopter tours.  City expense?
  • How City Administrator Bill Reynolds makes disparaging comments about Commissioner Grover Robinson.
  • How the Mayor's City Administrator Bill Reynolds believes Frank Patti, Maria Davis and John Appleyard are not the proper image of the City to the outside world.
  • How the Zimmerman Agency was instructed that their number one goal was Mayoral PR.
  • How millions of dollars of port infrastructure were more an accommodation of Brian Spencer and his cronies than true port development.
  • How it took at least six drafts for the Mayor's budget message
  • How City PIO Derek Cosson spent city time writing speeches and press positions for Hayward's support of Mitt Romney both in Pensacola and in press interviews around the state.
  • How many schmooze the Mayor in emails, including some that will shock and surprise you.
  • I will share an email where City Attorney Jim Messer actually stands up for the City Council.
  • How City CAO Bill Reynolds sent an email to City Council predicting the City's CRA's "COLLAPSE".
Should be interesting couple of weeks.  I'll try to post twice a day but am travelling later in the week.

Investigative reporting is pretty easy if you are actually looking for the truth...

Thursday, June 6, 2013

New Council Procedures Violate New State Law?

City Council will consider Monday new Council Policies and Procedures which will eliminate the Monday Committee meetings in favor of "agenda conference" meetings.

Hidden in the new policy is a statement that reads:

"Public input shall not be invited or routinely accepted during an Agenda Conference."

Once again the Council tries to limit Citizens input on issues. 

Fortunately for Citizens, the Legislature passed the Anti-Shushing Bill this year which states:

(2) Members of the public shall be given a reasonable opportunity to be heard on a proposition before a board or commission. The opportunity to be heard need not occur at the same meeting at which the board or commission takes official action on the proposition if the opportunity occurs at a meeting that is during the decision making process and is within reasonable proximity in time before the meeting at which the board or commission takes the official action.

Council needs to allow Citizens to have input at every meeting in which they sit together and quit trying to limit Citizens rights.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Misinformation?

CRA "Administrator" Ryan Winterberg-Lipp reads my blog.

Is that a violation of the new City internet policy?

She must have taken issue with my comments regarding the intention of the Mayor to "personally" negotiate with Jim Reeves on a real estate deal for a piece of City property.

Luckily, Council agreed that open bids were the best method and sent Ms. Winterberg-Lipp off to pursue the sale of the property to the highest bidder.

I love the continued references to 2008.

In 1559, the Council spoke Spanish.  Should the current Council speak Spanish?

Misinformation