Opinion: Trust the government? I remember the Logan Building!
Got a real kick out of the Board of Supervisors Tuesday afternoon meeting when Ray Nutting looked out in the audience and said “there’s no one here and this is a big important item,” for which the CAO Terri Daly quipped, “well that’s because they trust their CAO and staff” – not hardly Terri! We don’t trust you.
Staff and the Board has quietly and surreptitiously hidden this major acquisition of a 28,000 square foot office building in Placerville from the public by never referring to it’s name Pioneer Plaza or its address at 344 Placerville Drive, the CAO just publishes the Assessor’s parcel number in the Board of Supervisors Agenda and does everything under closed session since March. This is anything but transparent government and downright sneaky. The County was actually negotiating on this $1,750,000.00 property in the Fall of 2012, long before being given any direct authority by the Board.
Chris Payne, retired County DOT Engineer then got up and warned the Board that they had not been successful in the past with certain office building acquisitions, but wouldn’t give any names and the Board Chairman Ron Briggs seemed to chuckle away – Ha! Ha! Ha! THE LOGAN BUILDING! The County lost over $1 million on that fiasco, and they say history doesn’t repeat itself? Now the County is renting the Logan Building again for 10 years!
This one should be another blunder, as Russ Fackrell, the current inexperienced facilities manager is making many of the same mistakes cited in the former Grand Jury reports for the County’s failed acquisition of the Logan Building on acquiring Pioneer Plaza, ie., making the decision based primarily and solely on low price. Wait? Isn’t that what determined the Animal Shelter building in Park West?
Pioneer Plaza with over 30 years of deferred maintenance, lacks enough parking, not nearly ADA compliant, no elevator, etc., etc. Can’t wait to see the County’s final price tag on this one after all the true bills come in, especially since it is meant only to temporarily house workers during county remodeling. Why did Russ Fackrell lie to the Board of Supervisors and tell them the building was 40% vacant when it is really nearly 100% occupied? Yep, sounds like a real winner to temporarily house employees with a multi-million price tag.
How does this fit in with the County Master Facilities Plan? Oh that’s right, the County doesn’t have one. So all this seat of the pants negotiating, pushing leases far out from the County seat, strange contractual relationships with a real estate agent named Scott Kingston, big time lease commissions totaling over $400,000 paid to Kingston. And your CAO thinks we trust her? HA! We don’t trust you as far as we can throw you.