Planning failure

Our city manager’s December 2, 2015 “Financial Adviser Request for Qualification Report” is unsigned.  There is no letter of transmittal explaining who wrote the report or why they wrote it.  It is probably correct to assume that it was written by the city manager and his assistants in response to a request from the mayor.  Why it is unsigned is probably another example of them trying to establish deniability sometime in the future.

There is an interesting email in the report from our former city manager to our current city attorney.  The email is dated August 26, 2013.  It starts:

Sylvia, as requested by City Council during the August 1 executive session, the following is a summary of the chronology of events and issues surrounding the delays in proceeding with the sale of bonds for the ballpark project.

It is interesting that the city manager (who reports to city council) would send the document through the city attorney.

The email goes on to say:

Summary

Project was over-designed and the city’s project team failed to insist on scope reductions immediately to ensure the project came in within budget.

Failed

I would say so.  What was the budget?  On November 27, 2012 city council approved a contract with an out of town architectural firm that says in part:

3.4  PROJECT CONSTRUCTION BUDGET.  The Consultant acknowledges that the construction budget for the Project allocates THIRTY FIVE MILLION AND 00/100 DOLLARS ($35,000,000.00) for the award of a construction contract base bid, which is to include all features essential to the operation of the Project for its intended use as described in the Scope of Services and Project Budget in Attachment “A”.  The Consultant does hereby agree to design the Project such that the Consultant’s final agreed upon cost opinions for the construction of the Project, including all features essential to its intended use, is within the above budgeted amount for the base bid.  If the cost options exceed the Project Budget at any time, the Consultant shall make recommendations to the Owner to adjust the Project’s size or quality and the Owner shall cooperate with the Consultant to adjust the scope of the Project.

The contract with the architect was for $3,095,370.00.  On June 18, 2013 the city amended the contract to give the architect an additional $725,310.  After all, when you design a project to go over budget you might think that you deserve more money.

We deserve better

Brutus

 

3 Responses to Planning failure

  1. Reality Checker says:

    The mayor asked for two separate reports of the events surrounding the financial adviser mess. He asked for a timeline of events from the city manager and one from the internal auditor. The internal auditor put his report on letterhead and signed it. The other report doesn’t show who authored it, nor is it signed. Someone did choose to put a giant size city seal on the front page to make it look official.

    The city manager’s refusal to take credit for authoring that report and his refusal to sign it are for all practical purposes a refusal to follow the direction and comply with the mayor’s request. That might have been what ultimately triggered Leeser’s call for an outside investigator. Gonzalez’s refusal to sign the report tells you everything you need to know about his culpability as does his immediate hiring of a criminal attorney. His refusal to sign the report also raises obvious questions about the honesty and completeness of the report.

    Regarding Wilson’s e-mail to Firth, let’s cut through the BS. She and Mountainstar and a couple of members of city council were the ballpark project team. They are the ones responsible for all of the cost overruns. They later tried to throw people like Shubert under the bus, despite having never involved him in the planning and budgeting process.

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  2. Jerry K says:

    The whole affair was a Mountain Star bait-and-switch with the CC who played along as the stadium cost kept rising. You remember? We get a stadium and “someone else will pay for it,” i.e., the HOT.

    Meanwhile, Wilson was literally downloading the MS enabling legislation to CC from their attorney and Horchow, their pimp.

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  3. The evidence is there. These people misused taxpayer money – or, should I say, “pre-mis-used,” since we’re talking about bond money, which our grandchildren (if they are foolish enough to still want to live here) will never be able to pay back! I still think the FBI needs to be asked to look into the previous City Manager’s activities, along with past and present Councils.

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