Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Chaz Stevens ask Allen West to Attend a "Root Beer Social", in Deerfield Beach, but Maybe He Should Be Asking for a "Tea Party"

This morning I woke up and checked the blogosphere and what did I see, but Chaz Stevens wants a "Root Beer Social" with Allen West to discuss the DBHA and other possibly criminal issues here in Deerfield Beach.  I read about this in the New Times with Matt Hendley (I never thought I would long for the days of Bob Norman's reporting), which you can read here.

Now, if you've been keeping up with my blog then you know about this 2011 Homeland Security OIG FEMA Audit and the fact the City is trying to keep it under wraps.  Bill Ganz, even went so far as to say 

"When you go back, when people try and draw lines and compare this (2011 OIG FEMA Audit and investigation) with the HUD investigation (2010 OIG HUD Audit), which the City had to pay money back. When that first started (about May 2010) and that came forward there was not alot of, ummmm, information out there on it because it was too preliminary (We knew when it started, when it concluded, and what the recommendation was, unlike the OIG FEMA Audit). When it was very clear where it was going (Sept 29, 2010 with the publication of the OIG Audit report with it's recommendations to HUD), when we got the final ruling (Feb 2011) That's when the information became public and then at that point we had to pay the money back theeeee, ummm, 300,000.00 plus that we had to pay back. Ummm, I don't think this (the lack of information released to the public about the FEMA audit) is a way to try and hide anything, considering it was done the same, to several different cities instead of it just being selecting us (the City of Deerfield Beach) for malfeasance. To me it was not a matter of trying to sweep this under the rug. I agree that the more information that you get out there, you can "KILL" alot of this speculation early, so I appreciate you guys (Hugh Dunkley and Sophie Henderson) doing the work and coming in and talking about this now. It sounds to me that this is very preliminary, there's a long way to go before we have final answers and from what I understand the majority of the price tag of things that are being questioned have been dismissed and approved..."

(The Above was quoted from Deerfield Beach City Commission Meeting October 4, 2011 starting at 54:42-56:06)
Mr. Hendley is this news?  Do you think last year on September 29, 2010 the OIG completed their audit and investigation into the City of Deerfield Beach Community Development Department and made their recommendation that the City of Deerfield Beach should pay back about $400,000.00 to HUD.  In Feb of 2011 HUD agreed with the OIG and the City became liable to repaying back the HUD funds, which an agreement was reached so those funds would actually stay in the City.  

Now April 12, 2011 the OIG completed their audit and investigation into the City of Deerfield Beach, the objective of which was to determine if the City of Deerfield Beach accounted for and expended Federal Emergency Management Agency Funds totalling 13.9 million dollars in accordance with Federal and FEMA guidelines.  The OIG made their recommendation to FEMA that the City of Deerfield Beach submitted charges that were ineligible and should payback to FEMA almost $4 million dollars. 

(If you haven't read or heard about the report you can read about here.) 

Now, this is news to everyone because your blog, Chaz's blog, all the news media in town did not and have not covered this.  Yet, your publication covered basically the same story for the OIG HUD audit in Oct 2010, even though the situation was not concluded until Feb 2011.  Why the “selective” reporting? Why is should this “public” report be shrouded in such secrecy.  What else is being hidden shrouded from the public?
Does your publication not consider this bit of information news?  Do you think the “public” should not be aware of this potential $$$3.9 million dollar payback to FEMA?
 Because no matter the outcome of this Homeland Security OIG FEMA Audit DA-11-13, where the investigators have recommended that the City of Deerfield Beach pay $3.9 million dollars in Federal funding they received back to FEMA that potentially could affect all residents of Deerfield Beach, the residents and citizens deserve and have the right to know of this “NEWS”.

So for the City Manager, Burgess Hanson, to insist that nothing be reported about this and no information be given out about this until its conclusion and the City has found a way to "spin" the information should be considered a direct violation of the "Freedom of Information Act" and Florida's “Sunshine Law”.   For your publication to assist him and the City of Deerfield Beach Commissioners and staff with hiding this from the public (as many of the publications are aware and it was recently discussed at the City Commission Meeting Oct 4 to "quell rumors") Is unconscionable and makes me question the journalistic integrity of all of these so-called journalist in and about Deerfield Beach that are paid to report the news and keep the residents and readers informed of news.

Well, this story is news and yet you are pandering to Chaz Stevens about a request for "root beer social", PA-LEASSSSSSE!!!

The mere fact that Allen West is was so concerned about nepotism, bid rigging and other and yet has said and did nothing about the facts derived from this cleverly hidden FEMA audit is beyond me.  Or the fact that the Deerfield Beach City Mayor made several "Conflict of Interest” votes related to benefits, retirement benefits and other concerning the now "SOLD" Deerfield Beach Fire Department that directly gave her husband and son a "Special financial gain" is downright suspicious.  
The mere fact that none of this information is given any weight, investigation, or news coverage by yours and many of the other publications, supposedly serving our fair Hamlet of Deerfield Beach, brings up many implications in my mind and seems very suspicious as well.

What do you guys think? 
Do you agree with the City Commissioners and City Staff that this should not be available for public inspection and open to the public for discussion?

The Homeland Security OIG have completed their audit and made their final recommendation to FEMA on April 12, 2011; however, the final determination by FEMA as to whether the City of Deerfield Beach will have to payback the entire amount indicated in the OIG's final recommendation report from April 12, 2011 has not been made, as of yet. 

So, if the final report by the OIG has been issued and we are just waiting for the determination by FEMA then how could Bill Ganz state that this is preliminary and we have a long way to go.  Looks to me that we are in the same place we were back in Sept 2010-Feb 2011, so why is the City insisting on keeping this report and it's findings under wraps.

Maybe at this "Root BeeSocial" Chaz will ask Good Ol' Allen to investigate and ask for an audit of the entire City of Deerfield Beach and hold all those responsible for wasting taxpayer's dollars accountable and responsible, but hey then that might turn it into a "Tea Party".  

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