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Joyce Clark Unfiltered

For "the rest of the story"

It has been 18 years and 163 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

PLEASE CHECK OUT THE TWO SAMMY CHAVIRA VIDEOS TO THE LEFT OF THIS COLUMN.537e4d22979c7.image

Before beginning today’s blog let us all take a moment to remember all armed service active duty and veterans for their service and their sacrifice. A bit of trivia…did you know that 1% of America’s population is responsible for preserving the freedoms that 99% of us enjoy? Our debt is enormous.Memorial-Day-Graphic

Light rail continues to remain contentious. In its city council meeting of April 24, 2016 city council split on a 4-3 vote approving its route and mode of transit. Voting for light rail were Councilmembers Tolmachoff, Turner, Aldama and Chavira. Voting against, while citing the need for an investigation of the alternatives, were Mayor Weiers, Vice Mayor Hugh and Councilmember Malnar.

This issue will come before city council once again, probably in January of 2017. At that time city council will be asked to commit formally to financing and approving the final route. At that time they will still have the option to approve or deny funding for light rail.

There are many angry people out there who are opposed to light rail for many reasons and they are not going to go away. The wisest action this city council could take would be to call for a special election and allow the citizens of Glendale to decide this issue for once and for all. After all, the last vote taken about light rail was 15 years ago and in that time we have seen many things change. It’s time to formally reassess the will of the people of Glendale.

City hall damage and the fall out just will not go away. In Paul Giblin’s story of May 24, 2016, the city acknowledges that nearly $50,000 (not the $30,000 I had cited previously) of damage had been done. Here is the link :  http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/glendale/2016/05/24/vandals-cause-50000-damage-glendale-city-hall/84557320/ .

 In a second Public Information Request I again asked for the following:

  1. “I request Councilmembers Aldama and Chavira to obtain information from Barrio Breakthru about expenses covered by their donation of $5,000 of taxpayer money.
  2. 2. I request copies of any and all licenses and proof of insurance on file for this event provided to the city by Barrio Breakthru.”

The city’s response was, “The City has reviewed its records and has provided documents on file that are responsive to this request. There were no responsive documents for item #1.” None of the documents I previously received from the city show any licenses or proof of insurance on file with the city. Yet Ordinance 2975 specifically contains these specific requirements.

There is another way to skin this cat. On September 2, 2014 city council took up the question of council guidelines and specifically the issue of councilmember donations to non-profits. Here is the link: http://glendale-az.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?publish_id=2838c6fe-32f9-11e4-bdc2-00219ba2f017&meta_id=7296  .  No consensus was achieved by council to prohibit councilmember donations to non-profits but there were a series of staff recommendations that, by council  consensus, were adopted on that date. They were as follows:

  1. “Requests for an expenditure of council discretionary funds for purposes of a donation of $5,000 or above must be submitted to the City Council for approval.
  2. “Each request for the use of council discretionary funds will require the completion of a new uniform standard request form.
  3. “Council discretionary fund recipients will agree that the City of Glendale and its authorized representatives shall have the right to examine and audit all financial and related records related to the acceptance and expending of the discretionary funding.”

I call upon City Manager Kevin Phelps to perform an audit of Barrio Breakthru and its acceptance of and its spending of the discretionary funding provide by Councilmember Chavira in the amount of $2,500 and Councilmember Aldama in the amount of $2,500. This audit should be publicly released for it involves $5,000 taxpayer dollars. I further call upon City Manager Kevin Phelps to amend Ordinance 2975 making it clear that if these requirements are not met, no permit will obtained. There is also an opportunity to review policies for special events to ensure that all organizations are being treated equally and that city property is protected properly.

City Manager Phelps said, “ Breakthru Productions carries insurance, so city officials will approach the organization’s executives to seek reimbursement for the damaged equipment.” If that is the case, why was I not provided with that information when I made my PIR? None of the documents I received included any proof of insurance despite a specific request for such information.

Why does it seem that Barrio Breakthru is being given a pass by city hall officials? Is it because two councilmembers, Chavira and Aldama donated to Barrio Breakthru?

© Joyce Clark, 2016

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

PLEASE CHECK OUT THE LATEST CHAVIRA VIDEOWhat’s Sammy Been Doing, HIGHLIGHTING HIS CONSTITUENT ENGAGEMENT. IT IS TO THE LEFT OF THIS COLUMN.

It has been 18 years and 158 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

This evening, May 24, 2016, city council will vote on the issue of light rail. The meeting begins at 6 PM in Council Chambers at City Hall. Please park in the parking garage at 59th Avenue and Glendale Avenue. Walk east to council chambers. Make your opinion known. As I have stated in previous blogs, light rail may be one of the most divisive issues to ever surface in Glendale. Your voice counts.

On May 15, 2016 I filed a Public Information Request with the Glendale City Clerk’s office asking for the following information:

“Councilmember Sam Chavira and Councilmember Jamie Aldama each made a $2,500 donation on or about April 28, 2016 in support of the 2016 Cinco De Mayo Festival held on April 29, 2016 to May 1, 2016. The event was cosponsored by the City of Glendale and Barrio Breakthru Productions. I request the following public information:

  1. What was the $5,000 donated by Councilmembers Aldama and Chavira used for with regard to this event?
  2. A list of services, equipment, supplies and personnel supplied by the City of Glendale to support, produce, operate and clean up of the event, in-king or otherwise.
  3. The monetary value of all requested items listed in #2.
  4. Any and all reports, summaries, etc., submitted to the City of Glendale by or for Barrio Breakthru Productions that reflects the expenses required to produce the event and any and all revenues earned as a result of the event.”

My request was promptly fulfilled by the city by May 20, 2016. Questions #2 and #3 were thoroughly answered with the following information:

  1. “Off duty Police officers were hired through Pro-Force (a third party provider) not directly through the city. Sanitation roll-off delivery, rental, pickup and charges for tonnage at landfill. Audio and lighting services were provided by a third party not through the city. Transportation review of Traffic Control Plan (TCP) for event from the barricade company. This generated charges for lane use and TCP review fees.”
  2. “Sanitation roll-off charges: Delivery fee of $46.11; Haul fee of $175.00 and Landfill charges of $22.60. Transportation charges: TCP Review fee of $44.76; and Lane use fees of $335.76.”

My answers to questions #1 and #2 were not fulfilled. It seems that Councilmembers Aldama and Chavira’s total donation of $5,000 is in some black hole of non-information. There appears to be no accountability on the part of these councilmembers. Otherwise they could have provided information to fulfill that portion of my Public Information Request. As far as can be determined, neither asked Barrio Breakthru Productions for any information about the use of $5,000 of taxpayer money.  Apparently they just gave Barrio Breakthru Productions your money. Did the money cover costs of producing the festival? If so, what for?

Based on the information the city requested of the event producer its sole interest seems to be in logistics of holding the event. In the material the city provided there is no request for licenses of any kind or proof of insurance. It would seem these would be important for the city to have on file. Yet the city file supplied makes no mention of either item. One would think that these items would be important especially in light of the criminal damage that occurred at city hall during the event.

We still do not know if Barrio Breakthru Productions or the Breakthru Community Church was ultimately considered the event producer and was responsible for producing a certificate of adequate insurance. If it was the church that was the producer of record with the city then there is still the pesky issue of separation of church and state.

This incident demonstrates a lack of competence and clarity by city staff.  There were requirements for insurance in City Ordinance 2975. Why were the Ordinance requirements not followed? If the requirements were followed why was that information not supplied with all of the extraneous information I received about city requirements for the event? What is city policy these days? If elements of Ordinance 2975 are being waived upon whose authority is it being done?

I guess I will file one more Public Information Request asking Councilmembers Aldama and Chavira to obtain information from Barrio Breakthru about expenses covered by their donation of $5,000 of taxpayer money. I will also ask for any and all licenses and proof of insurance on file for this event provided to the city by Barrio Breakthru. Will let you know what response I obtain.

© Joyce Clark, 2016

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

PLEASE CHECK OUT THE “WHAT’S SAMMY BEEN DOING” VIDEO HIGHLIGHTING GLENDALE COUNCILMEMBER SAMMY CHAVIRA’S ACTIVITIES IN THE YUCCA DISTRICT. IT IS TO THE LEFT OF THIS COLUMN.

It has been 18 years and 153 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

As I reported in my blog, City hall damage, sometime during the weekend of the Cinco De Mayo festival, one of the “B” meetings rooms was damaged. Estimates of the damage range from $30,000 to $50,000. On Tuesday, May 17, 2016, at the end of the city council workshop, City Manager Kevin Phelps gave his report. Here is the link beginning at 42:09 minutes: http://glendaleaz.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=2&clip_id=2443&meta_id=39243 .

If you cannot access the link here is what City Manager Phelps said, “I apologize. I forgot to just notify you of one thing in my City Manager’s Report. If you’re OK. Recently, maybe you’re aware of, we did have some damage done here at the building and we received a couple of inquiries to our office. Basically, there’s an ongoing investigation. The Police Department is working on it. We believe we’ll have it resolved as to the issues. I think they’ve identified who potentially created the damage. We’ll then look at our options. Currently the damage will be covered under our insurance if we’re not able to get restitution from the people who caused the damage. But we’ll report back to you as soon as we get more detail. But it is an ongoing investigation. We feel like we will get, we’ve reviewed tape and we believe we can resolve the situation.”

The City Manager corroborated several facts: 1. Damage was done to City Hall. Although he did not indicate the dollar value of the damage or when it occurred. 2. The Glendale Police Department has an ongoing investigation.  3. There is a tape of the criminal damage being committed and they have identified who caused the damage. 4. The city will be seeking restitution from those who caused the damage. If the person(s) do not have insurance, city insurance will cover the damage.

This incident raises many questions about city policies for special events. Ordinance 2591, a city law, lists various requirements for sponsors of special events such as the Cinco De Mayo Festival.  As you may recall, this event was co sponsored by Barrio Breakthru Productions, an unregistered entity with the Arizona Corporation Commission. However Breakthru Community Church is a registered entity. Who was responsible and filed the application with the city? Breakthru Productions or Breakthru Community Church? If it was the church did the city violate federal law requiring the separation of church and state?

As you can see from direct quotes from Ordinance 2591 insurance and bonding was required. Were these requirements waived? By whom? And on whose authority?

  • “Sec. 29.2-26. – Code compliance; additional application requirements. To ensure that the public health, welfare and safety are protected, applicants shall comply with all city plumbing and electrical code requirements; provide for public safety personnel and resources (police, fire and emergency medical), sanitation and sewage disposal facilities, and indemnification and insurance. If the event will be held during hours of darkness, the applicant shall comply with lighting standards prescribed in this city code for streets and public property.
  • “Sec. 29.2-27. – Indemnification agreement.                                                                           (a)“At the time of application, the applicant shall enter into an indemnification agreement with the city under which the applicant assumes full responsibility and liability for and indemnifies, defends and holds the city harmless against:                                                                               (1) “All liability, claims for damages, and suits for or by reason of any injury to any person, including death, and damage to any property for every cause in any way connected with the holding of the large special event, including the preparation, set-up, holding and closeout; and
    (2) “All expenses incurred by the city for public safety, sanitation and transportation personnel and resources required to preserve public order and protect public health, safety and welfare, together with any other expenses or costs that may be incurred by the city as a result of the large special event. The applicant shall indemnify the city against all charges, expenses and costs, including the city’s legal department services incurred on account of or by reason of any such injuries, damages, liability, claims, suits or losses and all damages growing out of the same.
  • “Sec. 29.2-28. – Insurance.                                                                 (a) “The applicant shall deliver to the city manager, within fifteen (15) calendar days of the submission of a completed application or within two (2) calendar days of the event, whichever occurs first, proof of insurance in the amounts and types of coverage as determined by city manager regulation. All issuers of insurance shall be authorized to do business within the State of Arizona and carry an A.M. Best Company, Inc., FSR rating of at least B++. Minimum coverage shall include, but not be limited to: commercial general liability; automobile liability; and liquor and aircraft coverage as the type of event may necessitate. The city may also require special coverage that would protect against liabilities in case of the provision of activities involving child care. All such insurance shall be endorsed to provide for a waiver of underwriter’s rights of subrogation in favor of the city. Prior to commencing any work on the event, certificates of insurance approved by the city’s division of risk management demonstrating the maintenance of the required insurance shall be furnished to the city. The certificates shall provide that no material alteration or cancellation, including expiration and non-renewal, shall be effective until fifteen (15) business days after receipt of written notice by the city. If one or more cranes or similar heavy equipment pieces are used for any activity associated with the large special event, the proof of insurance will clearly demonstrate that the general liability coverage includes coverage for such equipment and has no limitation specific to use of the equipment. If fireworks displays or pyrotechnic displays are included in the large special event, the proof of insurance will clearly demonstrate that general liability coverage is provided to include coverage for such display(s) with no limitation specific to the display(s). Such evidence must be provided by the organization(s) responsible for such display(s). The failure by the applicant to provide or the failure of the city to demand an insurance certificate as required in this section shall not relieve the applicant’s obligation to provide the required insurance.                        (b) “All coverages are to be provided on a “per occurrence” form. If coverage is only available on a “claims made” form, the insured shall agree to maintain extended reporting coverage for a minimum of two (2) years past the expiration of the annual policy term.                                        (c) “The coverage(s) required under this section shall survive and not be terminated, reduced or otherwise limited by any expiration or termination of particular policies for insurance coverages.                                       (d) “All coverages shall be primary and non-contributory with respect to all other available sources. Where the city is named as an additional insured, it shall be by endorsement and not solely as a listed party on the certificate of insurance. The city shall be an additional insured to the full limits of coverage purchased by the applicant even if those limits are in excess of the minimums required by this section.                                  (e) “Federal, state and local government agencies may submit a statement of self-insurance or proof of eligibility for sovereign immunity allowed by the applicable state or federal statute. Such statement will be acceptable in place of insurance requirements defined herein.                             (Ord. No. 2591, § 3, 10-9-07)
  • “Sec. 29.2-29. – Surety bonds and payment for city resources.               (a) “The applicant shall deliver to the city within fifteen (15) calendar days after the submission of a completed application or within two (2) calendar days of the event, whichever occurs first, surety by a cash bond, payment and performance bond, or a continuing letter of credit in an amount equal to the costs of providing public safety, sanitation and transportation personnel and resources at the event. The surety shall be released if no claims are made against it no later than fifteen (15) business days from the last date of the large special event. Such surety shall be conditioned upon the applicant faithfully observing, fulfilling and performing all obligations under the application, contract and provisions of this chapter, and shall be in a form approved by the city’s legal department according to the standards set forth in this section. The purpose of such surety is to insulate the city from financial loss due to the large special event. Cash bonds shall be deposited into a non-interest bearing account designated for such deposits by the city.                                                               (b) “In addition to the requirements above, the applicant shall pay the city by cash, cashier’s check, certified check, wire transfer or money order within fifteen (15) calendar days after the submission of a completed application or within two (2) calendar days prior to the event, whichever occurs first, fifty percent (50%) of the total costs for city resources as listed in paragraph (a) above. The balance due shall be paid to the city in the same manner by no later than thirty (30) calendar days following the conclusion of the event. If the applicant is unable to obtain surety as required above, then the applicant must pay in advance by cash, cashier’s check, wire transfer, certified check or money order within ten (10) calendar days of submission of a completed application, the total costs for city resources as listed in paragraph (a) above.                                     (c) “The city may seek recovery of the costs listed in paragraph (a) above for large special events conducted without a permit.                              (d) “If the event a large special event is cancelled due to a state of emergency declared by the Governor or the Mayor of the city, the city, at the applicant’s request, shall refund to the applicant all deposits paid hereunder to the extent the costs have not already been incurred by the city, and shall release the net remaining surety posted as soon as practicable.
    (e) “Costs for city resources shall be determined by the city pursuant to city manager regulation.                                                                  (Ord. No. 2591, § 3, 10-9-07)” My apology for the terrible formatting of the Ordinance.

This incident of criminal damage to city hall during the time period of a special event demands a full, investigation and a publicly issued report by the City Manager to city council. The elephant in the room is this: did Councilmembers Jamie Aldama and Sammy Chavira, each of whom donated $2,500 of their council budgeted funds (taxpayer money), create an atmosphere of tacit, unspoken influence on staff? Did their contributions to the Cinco De Mayo Festival cause pressure to be placed on staff to waive many legal requirements of Ordinance 2591? The public deserves a full explanation after having $5,000 spent by councilmembers to support this event.

© Joyce Clark, 2016

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

CHECK OUT THE VIDEO ABOUT SAMMY CHAVIRA’S TRAVEL EXPENSES PAID FOR BY TAXPAYERS. IT IS TO THE LEFT OF THIS COLUMN.

It has been 18 years and 149 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

The following is from reliable sources and some of the assertions have been Barrio Breakthrucorroborated. Recently the City of Glendale co-sponsored the Cinco De Mayo Festival in downtown Glendale with Barrio Breakthru Productions (the listed principal is Yvonne Nunez). Someone, during the course of the weekend festival, had access to the “B” meeting rooms in City Hall presumably for the purpose of allowing various participants to use the “B” rooms in preparation for their participation in the festival.

If it is city policy to allow participants in city sponsored events the use of its meeting rooms then it is time to revisit this policy? Does the city require supervision? By whom? Is the policy for use of city rooms posted anywhere? What is wrong with using the city hall restrooms rather than its meeting rooms? Does the city require some kind of insurance by event producers to cover this type of situation?

It is alleged that some of the participants who had been allowed entry into city hall committed approximately $30,000 worth of damage to property, computers, accessories, etc., in one of the meeting rooms, clearly city property. The large dollar value of the damage probably meets the classification of “criminal damage.” The “B” meeting room in question at city hall is currently locked and apparently no one is allowed access to that room. This action seems to verify that something untoward happened in that room.

It appears the Glendale Police Department took a complaint and it was discovered that the participants who had caused the damage are on video.

Now for the sixty-four dollar question, er… make that the $30,000 question…will the city (City Manager Kevin Phelps) file criminal damage charges against the perpetrators? It appears someone had access to city hall meeting rooms and allowed participants to use them freely without any seeming oversight of the activities occurring in those rooms. Who had access that weekend? Why was there no supervision? Those who participated in the alleged acts of criminal damage should be held responsible and restitution should be required.

Will the city file a criminal damage complaint? It should, otherwise; once again, the taxpayers of Glendale will pick up the tab to repair the damage. It’s a matter of accountability.

Will the Glendale Police Department use the video to identify the perpetrators and cite them for criminal damage?

Will the City Attorney’s Office prosecute and seek reimbursement for the damage caused? The citizens of Glendale hope so.

Public knowledge about this alleged criminal damage has been buried. No, that’s not quite right. It hasn’t so much been buried as it has not been acknowledged by anyone. Many city hall employees know that the incident occurred and some have seen the damage but no one is talking.

On another note, Barrio Breakthru Ministries had been holding church services on aBarrio Breakthru Ministries city property. It is a clear violation of federal law related to the separation of church and state. I mentioned this situation in a previous blog. Barrio Breakthru Ministries is now holding its Sunday services at Landmark School (one of the schools within the Glendale Elementary District).

© Joyce Clark, 2016

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

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