Enrollment continues to decline at HCC
Here is the data for Spring Enrollment at HCC
New appointment is a former HCC employee
Liela Feldman, here
HCC Trustee Chris Oliver has not lost his magic, he still knows how to make money disappear
7.15.2011 Campaign Report (CFR)
11.10.2011 Amended CFR
I have done a little math, in July 2011, Chris Oliver had $10,500 on hand, based on the numbers he provided for the October 10 and 31 CFRs he should have had a total of 38,575 (rounded). Chris Oliver spent $39,447 during the same period. He indicates that he had $3,040 on hand (based on amended CFR in November).
I am baffled maybe someone can help me out as Chris Oliver just seems to be pulling numbers out a hat and placing them on the CFR. If you look at the 1.17.201 campaign report he shows a loan outstanding in the July 2012 CFR the loan disappears as does money maintained and no explanation as to how it disappeared.
If one looks at the 1.17.2012 CFR he has 3 pages of contributions but indicates that he raised $54,500 it does not even come close, The amount reported in the CFR by Chris Oliver was $7,500. Chris Oliver has two pages of expenditures for a total of $9,784 he lists $51, 352 in expenditures.
HCC Trustee Chris Oliver has not lost his ability to make money disappear, this is a case for the FBI to investigate. Have one person that will be taking the information to them.
Theories as to what is happening with the Chris Oliver's campaign reports are welcome. firstname.lastname@example.org
Have called some people and they may be filing complaints as to the reports, anyone want to guess how much the penalties will be. They have to be paid out of pocket as campaign contributions cannot be used.
To Chris Oliver, you should be pissed as hell at HCC some of the information HCC provided should have been redacted. I did not bother to redact as I am not paid to do that besides the reports are online and no redaction. hint some of you (trustees) have your personal phone numbers available to the public
Open letter to HCC, the other reports have the same problem. I suggest you send them to Inside redacted as I will not do the work for you nor will I correct mistakes of your making on my dime.
Here is an excel file (pdf) of the numbers that I came up with for Trustee Chris Oliver.
Mary Spangler's contract here.
Art Tyler's contract here.
From the Rumor Department - from an email that was sent to Inside
I am hearing about a trip going to India. Several HCC employees will make the trip. The India trip is to set up India-HCC community college. The ridicules number of, up to, 200 campuses. XXXX is one of the persons picked by Dr. Tyler to make the trip. XXXX may be scheduled to make 4 other trips beside the one to India, next month. She is scheduled to go to Austin to lobby for more money. XXXX is also scheduled to go to New Jersey for some creativity school.
YYYY, HCC employee, stated it appears that Dr. Art Tyler is losing some of his power, and YYYY is not happy about that.
Ethic or the lack thereof at HCC
Houston Community College has serious ethical problems when it comes to some administrators and Board Trustees.
Response to Chronicle editorial by a reader of Inside
Houston Chronicle Duped by HCC
The Houston Chronicle was duped into believing that “HCC had cleaned up its ethical act”. The Houston Chronicle and HCC voters were also duped into believing HCC was “busting at the seams” and the college needed a $425 million bond issue for new buildings. The enrollment at HCC has declined 15.3% over the last two years (from 56,592 to 47,928 according to the Texas Association of Community Colleges and the HCC CAFR).
The HCC board, under Chairman Richard Schechter, committed to “doing things the right way”. Commitments are cheap; ethical actions are priceless. The Houston Chronicle 1/27/13 editorial “HCC concerns” raised three concerns with HCC.
Since the first of the year with the appointment of Ms. Garcia, the board has finally started moving in the right direction. I personally applaud her leadership and I believe she will continue to serve the taxpayers and students of the district. The appointment of a replacement for Mr. Schechter is before the board. There are enough educators and lawyers on the board. We need an ethical, principled person with business experience or a CPA to fill the void. Keep the direction of the board moving upward and positive.
The Chronicle needs to do some serious investigative reporting into HCC. I have a file cabinet full of statistics, facts, and open records requests that can be substantiated that I would be willing to share. Writing editorials without facts, making insinuations, telling half truths and only hearing one side of an issue leads to bad journalism. Please join me and others in shining the light of truth on HCC and help them become an institution of higher education that we can all be proud of. "Dave Wilson"
The Houston Chronicle Rewrites History
One has to wonder if the Houston Chronicle is anti Hispanic. The Houston Chronicle today came out with an op-ed piece that is almost completely false as to the facts it states. Here is the article. The same Chronicle that rakes Herlinda Garcia over the coals has endorsed Herlinda Garcia three times, including the last time she ran for the position. The Chronicle has a history of discriminating against minorities in particular Spanish surname individuals. Read the headline on this Chronicle. article. Why is it that if two Spanish surname individuals promote different candidates they are vying to be the "Boss". It connotes images of the mafia. The Chronicle does not do that to any other racial or ethnic group. To the Houston Chronicle editorial staff "Mexicans" are less than others.
I want to point out that it was Carroll Robinson that proposed ethic reform and that it was Richard Schechter that attempted to kill or weaken ethic reform as proposed by Carroll Robinson. This how the Houston Chronicle is attempting to rewrite history "It was under the Houston attorney's (Schechter) strong and progressive leadership as board chair that much-needed reforms were initially negotiated and put in place".
This statement "Does his leaving signify a shift in power on the board that might lead some members to believe they can move away from commitments to transparency and arm's length, especially in the area of assigning contracts?"is extremely bias as the Houston Chronicle editorial staff assumes that the Whites have ethics and minorities don't? Let me point out again it was Carroll Robinson that proposed ethic reform, Carroll Robinson is Black.
I did some thinking as to how that editorial slamming Herlinda Garcia may have come about and I keep coming back to Bruce Austin. Bruce Austin is the only Board Trustee that was a trustee when that happened. Bruce would have the institutional memory to have recalled that there were some problems regarding Cy-Fair and that Herlinda Garcia had taken a strong stand and unlike Bruce Austin does speak out and is not afraid to stand up for her constituents. The editorial board at the Chronicle are not smart enough, or motivated enough to have done research going back over 10 years.
Who tried to kill ethic reform, watch the video below
Richard Schechter had been a Trustee at HCC for over six years, the last year he was Board Chair. Six years to do something about the lack of ethics at HCC and now when Trustee Robinson gets enough vote over the objections of Richard Schechter to get the item on the Agenda he works behind the scenes to kill it.
enrollment amd tuition compared to surrounding community colleges
HCC -7.1% - tuition and fees in district $814
Lone Star + 14.3% - tuition and fees in district $800
San Jacinto -0.8% - tuition and fees in district $656
Wharton +5.9% - tuition and fees in district $1,032
What happened with Chevron is peanuts compared to what may be happening now
Chris Oliver at the time that the Chevron contract was approved he was on the payroll of Ft. Bend Mechanical. The following people knew or should have known that Chris Oliver was on Ft. Bend Payroll at the time; Rene Byas, Jarvis Hollingsworth, Art Tyler, Mary Spangler. Not only did Chris Oliver advocate and vote for Ft. Bend Mechanical, Chris Oliver sent an email to Art Tyler telling him that Ft. Bend Mechanical be one of the contractors with Chevron Energy Solutions. Ask your self why was Chris Oliver never censored?
What happened with Chevron is small potatoes compared to what may be occurring now. Companies are jocking for project manager at this time. The profit from this one contract is outrageous at the movement HCC is considering and proceeding with the one project manager concept, see below (the wording is in blue).
The Chevron contract was presented to numerous agencies, local, state, and federal. I have no idea if they are investigating or not with the exception of the DA, they came out and said that the statute of limitations had run. That is bull when we presented the file to them it was less than two years. My opinion is that some people in the DAs' office are compromised, solely my opinion as I have not been able to find anything to prove it. Channel 13 was preparing to run the story when according to reliable sources they were threaten with a lawsuit. We know that soon thereafter Wayne chose to retire. We have and will continue to monitor certain people to see what they do in the future.
Response to the lies on the op ed piece by Bruce Austin
Here is the link to the op ed piece in the Chronicle as posted by Bruce Austin.
Mr. Austin how can you commit to keep doing what you are doing now. Are you blind, did you notice that when Mary Spangler came in that HCC was larger than Lone Star, it is now about half the size. Are you Blind Mr. Austin?
When Mary Spangler first came in tuition and fees were almost the lowest in the area, HCC is now the highest. Are you Blind Mr. Austin.
Here is Dave Wilson's response to Bruce Austin's Op Ed in the Chronicle.
HCC Open your eyes to what is happening
HISD wants to partner with Lone Star Community College, the question is why and what is HCC doing to stop it?
Several sources tell me that enrollment this Spring semester continues its spiral down, what is HCC doing to address it? I hear that students are leaving in droves, going to San Jacinto and Lone Star.
HCC may cease to exist if the "Trustees" don't open their eyes to what is occurring.
Let me phrase it this way Trustees your golden goose will cease to exist as there will be no HCC trustees. No more easy money, you money may have to work for it.
Bruce Austin from the past
"Officials with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development complained in November that they couldn't reconcile expenses or find out how some grant money was being handled by the office, which is run by Bruce Austin." Here is the link. Question is, can old dog learn new tricks?
I don't get the Saturday paper and have been informed that there was op-ed piece by Bruce Austin that was very flattering of the Spangler administration. I hope to get a copy soon so I can read it and maybe respond to what may be outright falsehoods. I don't know how many people would have read that op piece but I do know how many hits Inside gets, quarter of a million this past year.
Bruce let us see you start doing something about transparency, post the CFRs online. Post the disclosures online, by law they are suppose to be there. You know what has been going on Bruce don't act like it has been good, do the right thing.
Bruce is CEO "Austitron". Not sure what that is, will spend some time looking it up later. Was mabe it was just chance that a day after the op piece that HCC had a full page ad in the Chronicle? Tell me Bruce how many potential students do you think would have been looking at the front section of the Chronicle? How much do you think that ad cost? I think that may be a good open records request.
My, my Chris has been busy creating companies, I remember when his suits were torn and always asking for help, my, my being trustee has been good for him.
One Company here.
Another Company here.
Chris Oliver tweets, here.
According to County records Chris married in 2003 and has one house under his wife's name so he does not show up on the appraisal records. Chris still votes from his parents house. Chris there will be people on you like wet toilet paper.
Ms. Byas this is a request
Please post the campaign reports for the trustees as was promised to the community. The July 2012 reports have not been posted and the January reports are soon due. Ms. Byas this used be your department, please don't make me start doing open records requests as I don't know when to stop.
New leader at Top
Renee Byas was chosen as the acting Chancellor, have no idea if that is good or not, will give her a few weeks to see how she does. There are two really bad apples left on the Board, Neeta Sane and Chris Oliver (my opinion there may be a third). I will soon start looking into their businesses to see if we can see departures a la Schechter. Will stick with them like wet toilet paper until they see the light or go else where to do their business.
Why did she start a Management Company? What does she know about helping Businesses? I have no idea if there is a disclosure on file as HCC is either no longer posting them or she failed to file one. I guess the transparency did not last long, well the ethics bill did not last very long. HCC is the interest of Transparency should require all top administrators and trustees to list all their holding (at least major holding). In cases like this, HCC should require that all clients be listed to prevent the perception that it is but a cover to get paid for pushing for clients. Her company would be something I would consider doing to make money off the bonds and keep the public in the dark.
My gut feeling is that they want to keep Art there as he knows how to spread wealth and there is 495 million dollars of wealth to be spread. Art just did not understand that he could pick and choose who to make richer or rich, such is my gut feeling.
You are Welcome Ms. Byas
The deal was researched before the meeting? How do I know that, the hits to Inside almost 200 hits yesterday on information on Ms. Byas.
Chris you better look over your shoulder
15,000 hits on Chris over the last few months, I think you have people interested in you Chris. Will soon start putting new stuff up.
emails like the one below have kept me going, let us pray that HCC will finally rise from the pit
"God bless you for your dedication and determination in exposing the dark underworld that has been running/ruining HCC and destroying and eliminating employees who tried to expose and report the wrong doing and corruption."
Over 2 years ago I was invited to a meeting of employees that had been terminated or feared for their jobs simply for bringing mismanagement to light. They did not know how to proceed, I gave them some advice and saw after a short time that they could not or were unable to implement a way to defend themselves. I took it upon myself to create this web site and have spend thousands of hours researching the administration, requesting records which is like pulling teeth, and creating this web site. As knowledge is the best way to fight organizations like the one that has harmed HCC. I knew it was going to be a long fight and nasty at times. One has to be like a bull dog, grab on and don't let go. That lesson was learned from "Call of the Wild". I will see how things go today.
By the way I am hard on the media in particular the Chronicle (low price whores) as they catered to to the whims of the HCC administration for pieces of silver. They printed articles that destroyed reputations without researching simply accepting as facts the garbage that HCC gave them. They placed Schechter on a silver platter, while they destroyed the reputations of Yolanda Navarro Flores, Gloria Walker, Abel and Diana Davila. The Chronicle is no better than the magazines that print conspiracy theories.
I told a TV reporter who wanted to meet with me that will never happen as your organization does not go after the really big boys (Chevron). I was right. Another investigative reporter chose to retire rather, rather than change (He was about to run the Chevron story).
We have a worthless media that is good for weather and traffic reports, occasional chases, and sports. America we have gone downhill in regards to our first amendment right (of which newspapers were suppose to be the voice of the people).
Inside has had over 3,000 hits in the last two days, thank you.
Rumors are rumors I have no way of knowing if they are true but they are out there.
1. Mary Spangler submitted her resignation.
2. Cunningham submitted his resignation, numerous sources of this rumor since he is still there who knows. But, one can resign and remain for a time.
Opinions are solely mine and no one else.
1. Why I stated that the agenda item is the beginning of the process of the removal of Art Tyler. Art Tyler came in after the selection of Mary Spangler at her request. With the appointment of an interim Chancellor logic would dictate that Art Tyler is history. It is common knowledge that Tyler was soliciting support for Chancellor. There would have been no need for a committee if that were going happen.
2. The voting to accept the resignation of Richard Schechter is pure nonsense if a lawyer informed the board that voting is a requirement that lawyer should be immediately dismissed for informing them of such nonsense. I want to point out that I have a law degree and have been licensed to practice since 1983. If the requirement that votes to accept had to be cast than why didn't the Board vote to accept Perez resignation? If votes were required to accept a resignation in theory the Board could refuse to accept the resignation until an election by law was required. If that occurred the area represented by the Trustee would be without representation. It is nonsense what the Trustees at HCC are doing and could set a bad precedent. If the resignation was conditional on the Board accepting than it would not be a resignation but rather a desire that they beg the person to stay. If that is the case than the Board would be better off without someone that is so lacking in self esteem that they have to be babied.
Removal of Art Tyler and resignation of Richard Schechter
Here is a link of the Board Meeting on the 17th two items are of special interest the removal of Art Tyler and the acceptance of the resignation of Richard Schechter.
This comment is for two HCCS Trustees
There is nothing to fear but fear itself. Two of you live in fear because the administration and one trustee have threaten to expose you. We know most of what they know and you have nothing to fear. They are blackmailing you and that in itself is illegal. If you want to continue being a person who lives in fear, who may have trouble with your conscious than continue to stand there while they throw you scraps from the table. Because that is what you have chosen to be, mongrels that eat scraps that eat scrabs that your masters throw at you.
By the way I am one of the best read blogs in Houston, others may get awards from the whore, the Chronicle, but those blogs come in second. By the end of January I will have had a quarter of a million hits. We hope to expand to other governmental agencies as the media, DA, FBI, and other agencies seem to have turned into the three monkeys, see no corruption, hear no corruption, speak no corruption. Some of the media would rather fire people than to allow them to expose the corruption, except when it involves the little players like going after constables that raise money to help the community they represent.
I removed the links from the months as it identifies some of the persons visiting, suffice to say that Newspapers from up North have been visiting.
Below is an email that I received today, based on the information provided I went back to look at the December Board Meeting. Mr Transparency (aka Richard Schechter) sure was pushing for a company.
From: Concerned Taxpayer <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 3 Jan 2013 11:47:36 -0500
Subject: More Questionable dealings and allegations of in inappropriate acts.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Members of the Board of Trustees, Greater Houston Partnership, Members of the Foundation Board, Foundation Board of Directors, Foundation Donors, Texas Watchdog, Insidehccs.com, Public Media and Law Enforcement Agencies,
First of all we want to thank you for your continued support and feedback, and the tremendous amount of inside information you have sent us since we have started these emails. Your inside information is helping us to continue to discover inappropriate behavior by HCC Administration and some of the Board Members. Nevertheless we will continue our effort to distribute this information as it becomes available to us, and let the public and the Board members make their own judgment. Here is our first report in the New Year and all of the following allegations that the board should look into seriously:
We have been told that Chancellor Spangler has had some serious health issues recently, and she is on leave. We want to take a moment to say a prayer for her health, and wish her well and hope she recovers. Although it would not make a difference anyway, if she is there or not, since she has not participated in the management for HCC for the last couple of years. Nonetheless we wish her well anyway.
APPOINTMENT OF NEW TRUSTEE FOR DISTRICT III
Just like many other folks, We are watching the actions of the Board and Administration; it seems like the board is finally starting to try to do their job, and take a stand without the Administration fully dictating their policy, agenda, and decisions. The Board appears to be trying to take control rather than being puppets of the Administration. However some of the Board members continue to appear to be manipulated like puppets. Now, the choice of the new replacement Board member (for the current Chair Mary Ann Perez's soon to be vacant seat) will be an even more important one. It has been alleged that the current Chair, Trustee Schechter, and Administration have picked their replacement already; Ms. Adriana Tamez. We have been told that allegedly ESPA principal Karun aka "The Chancellor" has been 'Driving Miss Adrianna' around (like driving Miss Daisy) and showing her around, all the while trying to rally and get support for her appointment, allegedly so he can have his new replacement minion on the board to replace Mary Ann Perez; His beloved friend, compadre, and future business partner.
The Board of Trustees needs to make the right and independent choice and not just rubber stamping Mary Ann Perez's choice. We know Ms. Tamez is not the choice of the Community and is only the choice of the Perez, Karun, Trustee Schechter and Administration. One cannot help but to think that Ms. Tamez may already be allegedly tainted. What is she doing already driving around with a college Vendor, a vendor who is pursuing $420 Million dollars in Business with HCC? Is this how she will conduct herself in the future? Is Karun AKA "The Chancellor" responsible for vetting the candidates before they are put on the Board? This conduct causes many questions. It is alleged that according to the Harris County Tax records that Ms. Tamez appears to have multiple addresses, including one that is not in the District III. It is interesting that she is not claiming a homestead on either one of these addresses. It makes you wonder if Ms. Tamez is even living at any of those addresses? Or maybe Ms. Tamez simply is not smart enough to take advantage of the Homestead exemption tax reduction. (Which makes it scary to think she will be watching over the Community's money.) Interestingly, the only address that is in the district III is her parents address. Her address is 14 Greenway Plaza Building B Unit 18, 77046. Irrespectively, of where she lives, we ask that the Board keep in mind that Ms. Tamez is only Mary Ann Perez's choice, and that the Board needs to make the decision and not let themselves be run over by the Administration and they should consider all candidates in a fair and transparent process, and make the best choice.
What is Mr. Transparency hiding today and his abuse of power, legal misrepresentation, and conflict of interest?
Trustee Schechter continues to act like he is Mr. Transparency, yet he has never explained how he can support and continue to voting on items that he has a conflict on.
Furthermore, the other Trustees must question his role on the Board. He continues to allegedly treat the other trustees like they are second class citizens and not as smart as him. Why is that? Because he went to law school? It seems like he allegedly spends a lot of time giving unsolicited legal opinions and getting the Board Counsel and Administration Counsel to endorse and support his legal opinions like puppets, rather than performing his duties as a Trustee, and it is not his place to make a legal argument to manipulate the process. Trustee Schechter, the people did not elect you to be the board Attorney, (Well it was not much of an election last time since no one ran against you, but next time it will be different.) they elected you to be a Trustee, stop throwing your weight around and contradicting yourself constantly. There are other smart lawyers on the board, and they stick to their duties as trustee and not playing legal eagle as you do. I wonder what the State Bar would think about his allegedly rendering legal advice to the Board of Trustees members in his attempts to manipulate the board with what the "Law" is.
Abuse of Donors Money and Foundation inappropriate act
Which brings us to our next important item, The Surprise Special Meeting and Agenda item II part B. Why the "Special Meeting?" What could be hiding in a simple "Memorandum of Understanding Between HCC and HCC Foundation Regarding Acceptance of Gift for Early College and STEM Facilities. "
Why should we be "Surprised" that the Meeting on January 4, 2013 is really disguising moving one hundred fifty million dollars ($150,000,000) of the money that was donated by a donors to a fund which will be spent without going through the formal procurement processes.
This Memorandum is not normal for HCC and is not in accordance with what the "Law" is regarding procurement in the State of Texas. Anyone who knows even a little about this deal, knows that this is another masterpiece and a conspiracy that allegedly Trustee Schechter has orchestrated to award this one hundred fifty million dollars ($150,000,000) contract to his long term friend and buddies with Satterfield Pontikes Construction. Allegedly there are meetings that have taken place between Trustee Schechter and Satterfield Pontikes. There are documents and evidence to prove this which we will be forwarding to the District Attorney Office soon.
Sadly, the Board of trustees need to keep in mind that this is not the first time this has happened with the Foundation money and the Foundation should not be used as a channel to route money to contractors and launder money to favored members of the Board and or the foundation directly. The donors who give money to the foundation, they give the money on behalf of HCC and for the benefit of students and ultimately the taxpayers. If the oversight and control is taken away (or given away) from the Trustees there is potential for abuse; this fund will be abused and again it will result in both HCC and the foundation losing credibility with future donors and the trust of taxpayers. Many higher education institutions have large donors who contribute to the institution and their foundations, and when it comes to spending those funds they do not bypass or short cut the state procurement requirements, fair practices, and transparency. This seems like it is Chevron and Qatar all over again except this time, Ladies and Gentlemen, and Trustees, it is under your watch, and your responsibility, and it cannot be blamed on your predecessors. This is like asking you to do another off balance sheet transaction like Enron. We believe that you know what is the right thing to do.
Additionally, Trustee Schechter is also allegedly tied into at least 2 more Construction Companies. Allegedly, as shown by this "Special Meeting," he is working behind the scenes to funnel some of the foundations money to these companies without going through the proper procurement procedures, as has been alleged with ESPA and other Contractors. We will have more information for you on these topics in our next email.
Art Tyler's adding to his secret companies
The Deputy Chancellor is acting like the bond money is his money, and there have been numerous allegations of secret companies being formed to funnel these monies to favored companies and individuals. On October 16, 2012, Vice Chancellor Art Tyler and his wife formed a development company to do business in the State of Texas in the name Leslie Development Group, LLC. It is our understanding that HCC prohibits full time executive level administration to conduct other businesses without disclosures. In fact there have been issues raised in the past about this kind of activity by Mr. Tyler. What is the purpose of this Development Company? Will it be performing on contracts affiliated with HCC? How much of Tyler's time is spent on this company while he is on the Full-time Huge Salary with the College? What other resources or affiliates are involved with this company? How could he have time to be involved with any other business ventures when there is so much to do at HCC that is not getting done? Just a quick research online shows allegedly this company could be tied in to another company of Tyler's and Spanglers that caused controversy before. By the way Dr. Tyler, where are we with the status of Qatar and the Chevron contracts that you and Trustee Schechter were shepherding before, what is the status of this contract? What is the financial status of this contract? Everyone knows that the Chevron contract has been a big loser and the return on investment has not been there as was promised. Board of Trustee and the Chairperson of the audit committee should ask for a complete independent review of the contract, the financial status and the return on the investment. The result of this review should be posted on the website for the public rather than being swept under the rug as has occurred in the past.
Allegedly, Trustee Schechter knows about this Leslie Development Company and Mr. Transparency has chose not to question or discuss this at all with the Community. Makes you wonder why, huh?
Other irregularities and violations of public trust
We also are researching other vendors and contracts in the college. For Example the procurement of the Board's Legal Advisers Bracewell and Giuliani. When was the last time their procurement was performed? How was it procured? Who processed it, and how were they selected? Our understanding is that there is millions of dollars that has been funneled through this law firm without questioning them. Additionally as long as administration keeps paying the bills without question they will continue to support members of the Board rather than their fiduciary duty which is to represent the Board and in the end result the taxpayers. It would seem natural than that Bracewell Guiliani is one of the biggest contributors to the Board of Trustees PACs.
Consider the Board Bylaws:
The Board Counsel should be independent of the administration, however pursuant Article E Section 4 of the HCC Board Bylaws, the Board counsel is recommended by the Chancellor. So how could they be independent when the actual hiring is done by then Administration. Moreover under 4 c and 4e, they are also required to perform legal services for the Chancellor.
The General Counsel duties as listed in the Bylaws have them provide legal advice and counsel to the Administration. Recently the General Counsel and Administration have claimed that the procurement department is reporting to the General Counsel. Which truly, as you will see, the General Counsel cannot perform their duties and supervise procurement. Anyone with basic legal knowledge will know that there are conflicts within conflicts within conflict with regard to the General Counsel and the Board Counsel. The Board should consider seeking an independent law firm to review all of these relationships and request a decision to be rendered by the Attorney General.
Consider what happens when Procurement reports to the Legal Department. If there is a problem in the procurement department who investigates except for the Legal Department. Another example of the fox watching the henhouse. The Legal Department is supposed to be the unbiased investigator, and now there are no checks and balances. As an example as is stated in the Larry Veselka and Tim Byrd interview on July 15,2010 Renee Byass, HCC General Counsel stated that she felt pressured from Dr. Tyler regarding the Chevron contract., and she was told to get the deal done ASAP. We all know the Chevron had ties from California with Art Tyler and Chancellor Spangler; and that is how they were awarded the contract. And to add more conflicts within the conflicts, for the board counsel, it seems like they are confused as to who their client is, and it seems like they continue to support the administration instead of the board, because who pays the millions of dollars is the administration who pays their fees, and continues to renew their contract, if there is even a contract, and where the Chancellor is the one who approves hiring them. Since the Procurement Department reports to the Administration Legal Counsel, the Administration is selecting who the Counsel will be for the Board. Hello, you do not have to be a genius to figure that this does not pass the smell test. If you support the idea that the board should automatically approve administration decisions, then the Board would never be selecting their own counsel.
We would like to ask all you Trustees a question, which one of you were asked involved or had input in the selection and contract negotiation of your own counsel When was the last time you approved the budget, rates, or a contract for them? Or was this another sweetheart deal that Schechter and his legal friends put together. Now the legal department should be conflicted out of any review of Procurement because their findings will be directly related to their subordinates, and their own supervision. Again, it looks like the fox is watching the henhouse. What would be their incentive to bring forward any of their own misconduct, or other potential issues? To make themselves look bad? Did it ever occur to you why no other college or university has a procurement department report to in house counsel? That would be like having internal affairs of the police department reporting to the departments they are investigating.
Board Members we truly believe that the majority of you have the best interests of the taxpayers at heart and you are trying very hard to do a good job. However, it appears that the administration continues to try with the help of some of your colleagues to manipulate the process , which overshadows the good job that the rest of you are trying to do.
New Enrollment Status
Given the significant decrease in the enrollment numbers the Board and the Trustees should take another look at the spending of Bond Dollars on new buildings and additional facilities if the enrollment is going to continue to declining. Of course administration blamed the HCC 7% enrollment drop due to the better economy which is the defense you would expect. But how can you explain that at the same time, in the same economy, and the same area of the country, the enrollment for Lonestar college increased by 4 percentage, that leaves an 11 percentage gap between HCC and Lonestar. Maybe HCC Administration needs an overhaul rather than blaming the better economy.
Coming Soon, More information regarding other Trustee Schechter's, and other Art Tyler's questionable business dealings and other allegations, HCC violations of the Open Meetings Act and Freedom of information.
Please call your Trustee and Voice your concern, Look forward to seeing you at the special meeting January 4th, 2013
From the rumor mill
Rumors are that the President of Southeast College has been reaching out to the faculty senate for support for the position of Chancellor.
How to waste money the HCC way
Buy electronic citation machines so they can track citations, they don't write enough tickets to waste money as such, a joke, here.
Pay for web campaign services, another joke as one of the main goals is to increase enrollment, they already have a company that makes over a million a year and enrollment has gone down for three semesters in a row, here.
Give 30% to a collection agency for harassing students into paying back for the outrageous tuition and fees, here. Only government can get away with such outrageous collection fees, they take care of their campaign givers, here. No secret as to who will get it they take care of their friends.
Richard Schechter's daughter does not list ESPA as a client or former client, here.
Mr. Transparency (Richard Schechter)
I have a question is your daughter on the payroll of ESPA, either directly or indirectly?
You once launched an investigation that cost the taxpayers nearly a million dollars using one of your friends as the investigator (He got paid a lot of money). The investigation was based on less information that is being provided on the emails that are being circulated.
Mr. Transparency is your daughter involved with ESPA? You have not to this date to my knowledge publicly denied what is on the email. Why is that?
Mary Ann Perez
Rumor is that the replacement will be hand picked by Mary Ann Perez, will it be a puppet?
Here is the latest Ms. Perez's campaign report as a state representative candidate.
I would have the HCC campaign reports but Ms. Perez either has not filed any 2012 campaign reports or HCC is leaving her campaign reports out from the online reports (All the other trustees do have 2012 reports online). That does not surprise me as Houston Community College reeks of corruption throughout the system. Even employees are rewarded for playing and ignoring what they see. When they don't they are threaten, fired, or like JJ evidence fabricated to get an indictment (based on my research on what happened to JJ).
Ms. Perez, have you publicly denied what is on the email?
I do not claim that anything that is on the email is true but it was circulated publicly and sent to the trustees, I post it so that others may see as it has already been made public.
To whomever is sending the emails you waste your time with the Chronicle as they are nothing but a low price whore that has already been bought and paid for by HCC taxpayers monies.
Some one has been busy sending emails
Below is a very lengthy email that was sent to Inside HCCS. I understand that some HCC Trustees believe that is I that am behind the email, nope, not my style. I would have photos of Trustees coming out of meeting or apartments.
My gut feeling on the email is that someone is trying to get a piece of the action and if they do get contracts their concern for corruption disappears, my two cents on the email. To be more specific once they get a cut of the Program Manager they will leave it alone as their bank account will make them happy with the status quo.
For those employees that want to contact Board Trustees, trust no one.
I am curious about something that the email states that "ESPA is manipulating the Board", how does one manipulate? I guess that means that some Trustees are willing to accept something in return for their vote. I know of only one Trustee that could be manipulated as she is asleep and does not know it.
I am only printing the email as it has been made public and was sent to the trustees. I have no proof that what is on the email is true for all I know it may all be rumors. A rumor that is believable is better than the truth, my quote.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Members of the Board of Trustees, Greater Houston
Partnership, Public Media and Law Enforcement Agencies.
it seems like we do two steps backward for every step forward. At the
last meeting, all the Board members agreed that all the comparable programs in
the Houston Metropolitan Area have multiple Program Managers.
The HCC Staff presenting for approving a $300 Million dollar first run
of the bond said they thought dividing the work between multiple Program
Managers was a good idea, in fact they said that Multiple Program
Managers should be considered as part of the justification and support
behind increasing the amount of the Bond funding that
they were asking to have approved. The discussion around the table
was that at least three Program Managers would be needed and maybe as
many as five for the whole program.
Now, what more proof is needed? We already know that every member was agreeing with the staff's advice and the fact that multiple Program Managers are the only logical option. So anyone who reverses their decision without some really good evidence is obviously part of a conspiracy to manipulate the system. There is nothing worse than someone who has so little integrity as to agree to perform in a professional manner and then to sneak behind closed doors and try to go back on their word. If this is true, then what we have is a bunch of pretenders who are trying to misrepresent that there is a fair process being setup, when they have in fact rigged the whole process to make an award to ESPA. Are you still doubting that this process is being misused? Compare this quote from a Lieutenant Governors PEER Expenditure report to the State of Mississippi, regarding public (Construction Program Management) CPM contracts,
Benefits of using of a CPM contractor may be compromised by weaknesses in public entities’ CPM contracts. PEER found that many local entities lack criteria and standards for using CPM contracts and have deficiencies in their contracting process. Also, because the state has not established regulatory requirements for governing who is qualified to provide CPM services, public entities have no assurance that CPM providers meet minimum competency requirements. Such factors reduce assurance of the protection of the public interest. http://www.peer.state.ms.us/reports/rpt395.pdf.
Look how bad the result have been in some places using the current standards and criteria? How much more than industry standards do we have to pay before we wake up? Come on Trustees Do the right thing. See the attached Top 50 Program Management Firms from ENR.http://enr.construction.com/toplists/ProgramManagers/001-050.asp Where is ESPA on this list? What benefit is there in lowering our standards?
In regards to this statement [Chief Cunningham: “Nobody ever looked because they were this little tiny community college that didn’t matter. Now they’re one of the biggest colleges in the (expletive) nation, and everybody and their brother is looking up your skirt and guess what? You ain’t got no panties on.”
It is not the college that has no panties it is the taxpayers, the students, and some employees, they have been fucking them for years and don't even know it. One ex employee JJ was royaly fucked by HCC, I am convinced that they fabricated evidence to get the DA to indict him on a bogus charge.(one some times has to use strong words)
Trustee Flores, attempted to tell the Board that the administration was not on the up and up and they spent millions attempting to get her indicted. The problem was that she had done no wrong.
Hell I have been deposed, and followed, they will spend millions to try to cover what they are doing at HCC. They and their friends are getting rich and when media attempts to expose them they start paying them off not to report, by buying millions in commercials. While the student enrollment continues to go down.
Employees and students beware, here
by Jeremy Rogalski/Investigative Reporter
Posted on December 3, 2012 at 10:29 PM
Updated yesterday at 11:07 PM
HOUSTON—Despite renovations under way at Houston Community College, another side of HCC is falling apart if you ask insider Anil Ninan.
“HCC’s roof is leaking, HCC’s doors and windows are open, even the foundation’s cracked,” said Ninan.
Ninan was hired as the college system’s Chief Information Security Officer two years ago.
He’s now blowing the whistle on HCC.
“You wouldn’t live in a house that is in that bad of shape,” Ninan said.
He’s not talking about a physical house, but rather the school’s computer network that houses students’ personal information like social security numbers and birthdates, which Ninan claims is dangerously unsecure and exposed.
I-Team: “Has the system been hacked?”
Ninan: “Yes sir.”
I-Team: “How many times?”
Ninan: “Multiple times.”
A computer network audit done by the Gartner company in May 2011 called the college system’s risk level “very high.” It cited an “inability to deliver the appropriate level of security and privacy protection.” The report also highlighted an “inability to comply with a variety of industry, state, and federal regulations.”
Ninan said the gaps were leaving students’ sensitive information ripe for the taking.
“That’s crazy! I didn’t know that,” said student Giancarlo Licitra.
“Identity theft,” added student Maria Rodriguez.
“Actually, I’ve had it happen before,” said student Sirron Kyles.
Kyles said he once had his passport stolen, and knows the hassle of identity theft.
I-Team: “A huge headache?”
Kyles: “Headache?! I’m still going through it.”
So his message to HCC?
But there may be just one problem.
“They want to shove everything under the rug,” Ninan said.
Ninan said when he first told warned HCC’s top brass about the problems two years ago, bosses told him ‘don’t find any more problems.’
Worse yet, Ninan claimed HCC’s Chief of Police Greg Cunningham called him in.
“He told me that if I find any more problems at HCC, I’ll be fired and I will face the consequences,” Ninan said.
Stunned, Ninan began recording his meetings with the chief, including one in which Ninan brought up those state and federal computer security regulations he claimed HCC was ignoring.
“These guys have been ignoring that (expletive) since Christ
was a corporal,” Cunningham is heard saying on the tape recorder.
Chief Cunningham: “Nobody ever looked because they were this little tiny community college that didn’t matter. Now they’re one of the biggest colleges in the (expletive) nation, and everybody and their brother is looking up your skirt and guess what? You ain’t got no panties on.”
The I-Team asked Ninan what he was thinking when he heard that from the chief.
“That’s when I realized how corrupt HCC actually is,” Ninan said.
Chief Cunningham dodged our questions, but an HCC spokesman is talking about his comments.
“We at HCC hold ourselves to a higher standard and that kind of language and my apologies to the public if they have to hear that,” said Chief Communications Officer Dan Arguijo.
As for the computer security concerns, like the Garner company audit:
I-Team: “It sounds like the door was wide open from this report.”
Arguijo: “The report points out issues that we have addressed, we are addressing and we continue to address.”
And what about HCC’s board? At least one trustee said it’s critical they get their house in order.
“We’ve got to go to the next step and follow up and make sure that, not only the door is locked, but the deadbolt is turned and we turn on the alarm,” said HCC Trustee Carroll Robinson.
Spokesman Arguijo meanwhile, insists HCC has never been hacked, but does acknowledge an e-mail privacy error in September. The social security numbers of about 2000 employees were accidentally e-mailed to a non-employee.
Arguijo called the incident human error, and not a network breach.
Happy a happy Thanksgiving
It is never to late to warn you that we have given out your social security and employment information, two months?
Pdf of letter sent to employees, here.
2n email...11.19.2012 from Concerned Taxpayer
Thank you for your humongous support and feedback. The amount of emails that we have received has been overwhelming. We are overwhelmed with your responses and additional information that you have sent us. We are still sorting through all those responses. We will review and update everyone. We want to especially thank the faculty and staff who are providing us additional information such as those referenced above, which by doing so, they have taken a great risk of retaliation from the Board and the upper administration. After all, it is not a secret that a member of the Board, The Vice Chancellor allegedly worked for the intelligence community and they know how to retaliate just like they retaliated against one of the senior staff recently.
I have been hearing rumors of millions of dollars of kickbacks based on what is on the email. The FBI the DA, Channel 13, 11, 2, and the Chronicle are failing the community. HCC needs to be investigated but everyone seems to be on the take. State Agencies have been forwarded information of the corruption but they seem to lack interest and/or desire to conduct an investigation. State Senators were asked to request an audit, they refused. The Trustees are the problem as they are lining their pockets with silver, execptions of course but they are exceptions.
I can not vouch for the email, but for the part about the Program Manager being the same one for about 7 years, about the Chevron contract, and one not mentioned the contract for insurance, that one was left out for some reason. At one time ESPA was owned by El Franco Lee and was sold, to the present owner. Not sure if they are still paying for the company or it was a one time payment. If they are still paying than Bruce Austin has a conflict and has failed to file a disclosure.
If I had to guess as to the author or authors of the email, I would guess that there are venders that are unhappy that they will not get a chance to bid on the process.
I have been informed that the email has been sent to all the media and that it will or has been sent to all elected State and Senate Representatives. The fight did not end at the ballot box but just got bigger as we work to stop the corruption at HCC.
From: Concerned Taxpayer <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 17 Nov 2012 20:53:22 -0500
To: <email@example.com>; <Ericka.firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: New HCC Scandal
This email has been sent to thousands, please help by forwarding this to anyone you feel may share the same concern or would like to have this information. Please also come to the meeting November 17, 1 PM, this Monday at HCC.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Members of the Board of Trustees, and Community of Houston,
We would like to bring your attention to an urgent matter that we feel requires immediate attention and planning in order to maximize the benefits of the expenditure of the bonds that have just received approvals by the taxpayers. This letter is just the first of many wherein we are asking that a lot more questions get asked before the Trustees approve a new round of alleged non-competitively priced Program Management.
We are extremely concerned because the HCC Administration is proposing to have only one Program Manager to manage all Construction and the $425 Million Dollar Bond Management. This is a very unusual process considering that in comparison HISD hired a minimum of 5 Program Managers to manage their $700 Million Dollar Bond Program, which allowed the creation of additional competition, diversity, and fair business practices. We are confused by HCC Administration's conflicting positions. First, at one moment, Administration claims not to have the expertise in-house to determine what is the best way to run the bond program. And in the next moment, Administration is claiming that they know what is the best structure, and therefore they are recommending a proposed structure of single sourcing one Program Manager for the whole Bond, and creating additional multiple layers of Additional Management. Approximately 15-20% of the total bond, more than $100 Million dollars will be wasted on unnecessary extraordinary soft costs that will not benefit the HCC System, the students, nor the community.
With the amount of money that HCC has spent on program management, HCC could easily develop their own program management team and save money which could be used to improve HCC's infrastructure. In the alternative HCC could leverage this amount of Volume for even more competitive fees with multiple Program Managers instead of relying on one Program manager who may have incentives to overinflate the budgets for greater fees. Additional Program Managers allow for alternatives if one Program Manager does not perform as well as expected.
In fact, HCC has been paying 7 to 10 percent of the total project to the program manager. This means 10 percent of the planning fees, 10 percent of the Architectural and Engineering Fee, 10 percent of the Total Construction Fees, 10 percent of the Furniture, Fixtures, and Equipment, 10 percent of the Technology, etc... For the same services many of the institutions are only paying 2-2.5 percent of only the Construction fees. Thus the percentage that HCC has paid for Program management, in the past, sometimes was double and even triple the average costs of the industry. As HCC begins a new selection process for the expenditure of the Bonds, Bond Management, Program Management and Construction Management, we have serious concerns that process needs to be watched to minimize the potential for abuse and overpayment.
Because of this history, we know why there is a large potential for abuse in a Program Manager Contract. ESPA Corp, and the fees they have charged, these have led to the numerous allegations of improper conduct surrounding the award of their Program Manager contracts.
As most of us know, it has been repeatedly alleged that ESPA has managed to keep the contract with HCC without going through the competitive process. Time and again, for more than 7 years, ESPA Corp has been awarded the Program management contract and received over $30 Million dollars in fees without going through a formal competitive and fair selection process. It is not a secret that this company is connected to one of the State Representatives and was previously owned by one of the Harris County Commissioners. Furthermore, the ESPA principal is also known to have extremely close relationships with the current Chairperson, the Vice Chancellor/ Chief Operating Officer, and several of the board members.
One of the more recent allegations is that ESPA just bought a residence in Midtown for the Chairperson, who was recently elected to the house of representatives. This may explain why some of the committee and Board are pushing so much to get this new Bond Management Program awarded to ESPA before the Chair leaves office in early January 2013. Considering that the new Bond program will be administered by a new Chair, considering that by HCC's own admission this is supposed to be a 4 year contract, why not take a few extra days, to allow a professional and fair process. Maybe there are alternative motives?
We think that it is only prudent for the Board of Trustees as Stewarts of the Public's money to re-evaluate the process and make a decision to use a selection process that focuses on the best practices which can easily be defended in the public eye. A fair process could counter the alleged word on the streets that HCC and the Board will go through the motions of a competitive process and direct the contract award to ESPA, by manipulating the RFP and selection committee, again circumventing the proper practices in the same method of operation as was done for Qatar and Chevron Corporation Projects.
As another example of how the old process has increased the costs for HCC, per the HCC webpage, ESPA was awarded the project for San Jacinto Renovation for $3,000,000 in Fees. Keep in mind that the total project is only $31 Million dollars and HCC is spending over $3 Million, more than 10 percent just for Program Management. Yet, the webpage shows ESPA has already been paid $3,500,000, this is $500,000 more than their original contract. How could this happen when the project is less than 10% complete? Maybe it is a clerical error? Maybe there are more questionable activities occurring? Compare the fact that as Program Manager, ESPA has input or influence over who is selected to perform the contract, and on this San Jacinto project, where their fee has grown by $500,000, they selected Skanska. Compare also that Skanska and ESPA share the same lobbyist. ESPA was instrumental in Skanska getting this contract. This is just one of several conflicts of interest which have been alleged to occur with ESPA. In fact ESPA is also on the Architectural Team. How can a firm be both the Program Manager and on the Architectural Team selecting contract awards? Is the Fox watching the Hen House?
At the recent Board Meeting despite HCC Staff Purchasing Director recommendation, The Board and the Administration insisted to get a RFP out during Christmas Holidays in order to expedite the process and award the contract on or before the 5th of January 2013. This would be before the Chair who is supporting ESPA leaves office. The Procurement Director represented to the Board that he recommends against the process due to the fact that there would be insufficient Staff and time to prepare the RFP and review all of the responses given the fact that there is a lot of Staff time off for the Holidays. At this time the Vice Chancellor or Chief Operating Officer volunteered to cancel his vacation and assist with the selection process. (how funny) Naturally, he has already made his selection. The chair of the Finance Committee irresponsibly directed the Chancellor to hire some Temporaries to come and evaluate the proposals. Obviously, you cannot have Temps come on and evaluate a Large Bond Project with $425 Million dollars for a 4 year duration.(What would be the qualifications of these folks, what would they care if money was wasted?) The procurement director further stated that this would not be fair to the Vendors due to the short response time and the Holiday Season. At this point, the Finance chair, Richard Schechter said he did not care if these folks were Christians, Muslim, Jewish, or Buddhists if they want to do business with HCC they should skip the Holidays, and work on the response. How insensitive is that Dick? What is the rush? The community already knows who you want to get the contract, who you are pushing it for. Next he said that most of them already have their response prepared. We disagree, we feel that the only person who has had access in preparing the RFP is ESPA. All of this together clearly gives ESPA an unfair advantage over the rest. Mr Schechter could not be influenced by the fact that his daughter is consulting for ESPA. Maybe they want to repeat the scandal the resigned commissioner Jerry Eversole caused before, oh wait Mr. Eversole is also working for ESPA.
The Program Management Community is recommending to us that the best management practice for HCC would be to consider and develop a non-bias process including but not limited to expanding and enlarging the selection committee say between 7 and 9 'qualified' people, who are required to follow the selection criteria published in advance, with specific scoring criteria which is also followed. Moreover, considering the Volume of work which HCC has available, opening the contract up to more participants would ensure more competition. Another consideration is that these programs need the boards oversight. The Board should have a process to have input on the RFP and the weights that will be applied to each factor, such as price range and budget, to make sure that the process is set up correctly. This process should be set up so that the Board can monitor who is on the selection committees and make sure that none are being unduly influenced or otherwise tainted.
Another possible long term choice available to HCC, is to have the design teams self perform or follow the example of University of Texas, Texas A&M, and University of Houston. These Universities spend this amount of money every year. They do not have contract program managers. Consider what a budget of $50 Million dollars could do, and the type of staff you could hire to run this program? At a certain point the volume of projects reaches the point that alot of money could be saved by self performing. Think of all the facilities that could be upgraded or built if just 10% of this money was saved from the program management budget.
As a final example, please revisit the price HCC is paying in relation to the standard industry and the average Program Manager fees from the top 50 firms from ENR. Their standard competitive fee is generally between 2 and 3 percent based on the construction fees of the project.(The bigger the project the lower this fee can get) In fact, for some projects a flat fee is paid instead of a percent, that way there is no incentive for the Program Manager to inflate the budget.
Please review this information and call your Trustee, or Trustee representatives and ask them what their answers are to these questions:
1. The Administration claims that they do not have the expertise to manage this large of a program. Did the Administration seek feedback from the board or the Program Management Community?
2. How did the administration develop the proposed plan to seek only one program manager and 3 construction managers?
3. Did the Board influence the decision of the Administration in any manner?
4. Did the Administration look at any of the successful Bond Programs around the Country and how they were managed?
5. Did the Administration let the Board know what the average costs of these services are at each level? If not, how could the Board vote on this?
6. Did the Administration seek input from the board or other outside experts for input on developing the RFP Process;
7. Did ESPA provide feedback on this RFP process?
8. Did ESPA influence the decision of the Administration in any manner?
9. Did the Administration advise the Board that by making a short fuse on the turnaround for the RFP that this would give an extreme advantage to the incumbent Program Manager and disadvantage to all others?
10. Did the Administration receive any input on the design of the RFP?
11. Did any of the Board Members receive any calls from ESPA pushing for just one Program Manager?
a. We know of at least 5 Board Members who have acknowledged receiving calls from ESPA to try to influence them to support limiting the RFP to one Program Manager because ESPA feel like they already have the contract wrapped up and in the bag.
12. Has the Board provided any input on how the selection process should be done?
13. Has the Board provided any input on how many people will be on the selection committee and their qualifications?
14. Has the Board provided any input on how many people will be on the scoring process?
15. Will all the detailed scores be shared with the Board Members?
16. How will the Administration determine what is a fair price to pay for these services?
17. Has the Board considered an open forum for other program managers to provide feedback for the process?
18. Is ESPA the only one who has provided feedback?
19. What is the responsibilities and duties of the Program Manager?
20. What is the responsibilities and duties of the Construction Manager?
21. What is the responsibilities and duties of the Project Manager?
22. What is the responsibilities and duties of the Architect?
23. What is the responsibilities and duties of the Engineer?
24. In what areas do one or two of these groups have overlapping responsibilities?
25. Come on Ladies and Gentlemen, the ink for the Articles on the RHJ and the Fort Bend Mechanical Scandal is not even dry yet. Is that the position you want to put yourself and Houston Community College in again?
Please forward this to anyone you fell may share the same concern.
We elected you and put our faith in you to be representing the taxpayer and not to be rolled over by the influence of the Chancellors, Vice Chancellors, and Vendors like ESPA.
Please do the right thing.
Khou and polls, Channel 11 has a poll that was conducted before early voting started. The poll suggests that the Democrats will carry Harris county by a small percentage, that is probably true based on the data they have. The bonds and metro, however, are another story. The problem with the projections is that nearly 70% of the people did not respond to the questions. Stein has made similar projections in the past where there is insufficient data to determine the probability of the question. Stein used to be a decent poll taker but I am not sure what has occurred recently. He made the same type of projects during the Mayor's race and he was off by nearly 10 points, that is unacceptable when doing polls. He would have a better chance of predicting a winner by tossing a coin.
The interesting part of the poll is Metro as the poll has the NO vote at nearly 70%, if that is correct there will a lot of cities hurting when they lose the Metro money.
My prediction based on informal polling is that the bonds will fail (some exceptions on the City) and the NO vote on Metro will win (by a very small margin). Why I predict that the bonds will fail; The reason that all the bonds are up this year is that it is a Presidential election year and there is much higher minority voter turnout. Bonds pass with the minority communities supporting them (caveat; the minority politicians normally do quite well financially themselves). The extremely high turnout and long ballot will be working against the bond proponents. About 70% of the voters are voting straight party and not voting on the bonds. People are waiting in line and most people will not stand there and read the bonds while they have people waiting and they may have already spent an hour waiting themselves. Not a scientific poll but I believe I have a better chance of being correct than Stein.
Here is the data on the polls.
Me thinks the politicians and the people that run the City and live of the public trough got too greedy. They should have prevented all the entities from placing bonds on the ballot and concentrated on educating the public on the Metro vote.
Why is HCC paying the Foundation? And How Much?
"In consideration for Foundation services including but not limited to fund-raising for the benefit of the College, the College will provide the Foundation with fair and reasonable compensation including in-kind services and payment for services. The amount of compensation will be negotiated on an annual basis in conjunction with the College budget process and prior to the beginning of the ensuing fiscal year."
HCC seems to be creative in ways to spend taxpayers monies. Richard Schechter signed the contract. This is would be similar to forming shell corporations to hide transactions. He who pays gets to dictate, contrary to anything the contract may say. Richard Schechter, Mr. Transparency, what does HCC have to hide?
Here is the contract, page 3 number 6. How much are they raising and how much are we paying them. Why is HCC paying? Stop the corruption at HCC.
Stop the corruption, Vote no on the HCC bonds. All HCC employees who care about HCC should be working toward sending the California Mafia away.
Polls and Bonds
Early is September the bond promoters all those contractors, lawyers, and companies that live of the public trough paid some people that used to be trust worthy to put out a poll that showed that the bonds had strong approval. The scums, that did the poll, did as they were told and came back that the bonds would pass and that they had 69% approval (from registered voters). Registered voters are not the people that are polled, likely voters are polled. What the pigs that live off taxpayers were doing and are doing is trying to influence the mind set of voters. The bonds will fail, the lack of new polls prove the point. If the bonds were enjoying strong support they would be announcing it. The poll takers, however, do have a reputation that they want to maintain so they have to be careful if they want to keep that reputation.
How Wasteful is HCC? Below is how much they spent treating themselves to first class trips and hotels, one event.
$150,000 is how much the taxpayers paid for the Administration and Board to travel for one event, it is our money they are wasting! This is only part of that trip, HCC spent in excess of $200,000 of our hard earned money. We don't even know if they ever got reimbursed as I could never get them provide proof of reimbursement. Reimbursement was not in the contract they had with the Qatar government. The part that is black out has the names of minor children as some employees and administrators took their families with them on the trip. HCC (Us) paid for their trip.
Stop the Waste, Stop the Corruption, Vote No on the HCC Bonds.
Is HCC using taxpayers money to promote the bonds?
My son received a mailer from HCC promoting the bonds, "With the funding from the bond referendum, HCC will be able to build a new medical center..."
HCC seems to be targeting the mailers, that is a no no!
Carroll Robinson continues the lies "HCC is currently educating 75,000 students" Not true!
Coleman building added the O'Quinn building which was pushed as walking distance from Coleman, it is not within walking distance, but the building is sitting there empty and can be used by Coleman students.
Community College of Qatar, how successful were the first two years?
"The Community College of Qatar has awarded the first Houston Community College diplomas to eight students. The eight diploma recipients are all members of CCQ’s first graduating class. A college statement said all 11 members of CCQ’s first graduating class are now attending various universities in Qatar and in the United States including Qatar University, Carnegie Mellon University-Qatar and Woodbury University in Los Angeles, California. While congratulating students, CCQ’s acting president,..." HCC spent millions of dollars to graduate 8 students.
VOTE NO HCC BONDS
HCC Trustee Yolanda Navarro Flores - Against HCC Bond Proposal
From the minutes of HCC
Mr. Schechter made the following statement regarding the proposed bond program:
"HCC Board and administration have always been fiscally responsible and noted that the college is bursting at the seams and may be unable to meet the demands of students and businesses."
Below is Richard Schechter's idea of being fiscally responsible, need to mention that three of Schechter friends received millions of dollars in contracts from HCC. Mary and Art Tyler have no qualms about spending ten of thousands of our taxpayers dollars on trips for themselves. Below is the invoice for $35,000 for just one trip for two people. They spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on one trip. Board Members traveling first class, administrators traveling first class and all of them staying in first class hotels. First Class travel by the administration and Board Members. I want to mention that Mary Perez is running for State Representative, I normally support Democrats but she is not the right person for that position. Do not support her.
VOTE NO ON THE HCC BONDS - STOP THE CORRUPTION AND WASTE
Re-circulated Promise or how to pay twice for the same thing, the HCC way
Reason for Bond election: The decision for the bond referendum is based ....exceeding capacity ....Since 2007, the college has grown by 40%, and is currently operating at 92% capacity. As enrollment continues to increase with the area’s population growth, HCC must grow and expand to meet the expected demand. The college needs additional buildings to keep up with that growth. Most of HCC’s facilities are either near capacity or have exceeded capacity. Source is HCC, here. The reason that HCC uses 2007 as a starting point is because enrollment is not increasing it is decreasing, it decreased by about 10% from last year. Source, Texas Association of Community Colleges, here.
The Truth: In 2012 the head count for students is 47,928 - In 2007 the head count for students was 36,786 = a 30% increase, there has been an increase but since then several campuses have been added; in the East Side Campus two additional buildings were added; Stafford campus had an additional building added, 120,000 square feet- source here; The Alief campus has been added, source here; A new Northline campus was built doubling the capacity for students. The O'Quinn building, also, came online which is part of the Coleman campus, so why do they need to buy another building? A total of 16 new building have been built since 2007, source, here, I won't vouch for this source.
All of the new buildings were built with bond monies from 2007 - the increase for enrollment has been taken care with the 2007 bonds. HCC is lying about the need for new buildings? I maintain the books have been cooked and if the bonds fails HCC may fail to meet its debt obligations. STOP CORRUPTION, VOTE NO ON THE HCC BONDS.
Question, are the HCC trustees dumb or are they crooked? I vote for crooked, well at least the six of them who voted to support the bonds.
October 3, 2012
Chevron Energy Solutions - The Chevron Contract
The most outrageous conduct (in all probability illegal) by the Administration and other top level officials occurred in the solicitation and award of the Energy Contract to Chevron Energy Solutions. The top people stated to Veselka and provided proof of their activities to Veselka of the conduct that occurred before and after the awarding of the contract. The top people involved were;
Before the Energy Contract which cost the taxpayers nearly $20 million, the above people met and discussed which minority vendors were to be used in the contract.
Ask yourself how would they know before the bid went out for bidding who was going to get the contract? How could they be so sure? They knew because the entire bidding contract awarding at HCC has been rigged. It was and may still be a common practice to award contracts to certain people. I have documented it during the last two years and is available here at this web site.
STOP THE CORRUPTION AT HOUSTON COMMUNITY COLLEGE - VOTE NO ON THE HOUSTON COMMUNITY COLLEGE (HCC) BONDS.
Circulate this web site to your friends, neighbors, and other concerned taxpayers, stop the madness.
October 2, 2012
A friend of mine who went to the HCC finance committee with another old friend for the Property Rights days informed me that HCC is considering borrowing up to $125 million (commercial paper) because rates are low. Those people that we vote for Trustees are suppose to make sure that we the voters (taxpayers) are not taken advantage of by the Educational Bureaucracy. The "Trustees" are failing they get an F. They want to borrow money to spend because interest is low, that is a stupid reason. HCC does not need more money they need honest Trustees and an honest Administration. Get rid of the corruption by voting NO on the HCC Bonds. Tell your neighbors, tell your friends, spread the word to vote No on the HCC bonds.
The reason (my opinion) for the need to borrow is that HCC is almost out of money and may not be able to meet its' obligations. I maintain that money is missing and there is a great need to cover it up quick. If the bonds fail I expect that there may be some people that could go to jail and I sure hope that the Trustees that have been implicit will be there next to them wearing pink undies.
First class trips to Qatar via Paris by Mary Spangler and Art Tyler, taxpayer financed.
First class trips to France and Qatar by an HCC employees for herself and her family, courtesy of HCC taxpayers, one of the trips was supposedly reimbursed by the Qatar government.
Trips to India by another employee to solicit foreign campuses a la Qatar, Cook was the employee.
Thousands of dollars on food and drinks for Mary Spangler and Art Tyler, courtesy of HCC taxpayers.
Hundreds of thousands of dollars on limousines for Mary Spangler and her escorts.
Employees running businesses out of HCC with the permission of the Chancellor Mary Spangler.
Trustees going to Vendors and soliciting jobs for themselves, Chris Oliver per Veselka Report.
Minority vendors pre-selected before the main bids goes out for bidding (Means that they knew who they were going to give the contract to), The Chevron Contract.
Moving vendors up on the list for selection, those vendors provided jobs and money to numerous trustees, Ft. Bend Mechanical - was done twice.
All of the above and much more has been documented by Inside HCCS.
STOP THE CORRUPTION, VOTE NO on the HCC BONDS.
They paid a lot of money - 10 times what the owner said it was worth- that is a lot of SHIT, Westheimer Property.
This Group is working against the bonds, they need help.
Passage of the Bonds will result in $10,000s increase on small businesses, stop the madness. Vote No
The Lies Never Cease - Say No to the HCC (Houston Community College) Bonds
Busting at the Seams - they scream, the board, the news letters, the administration - lies, lies, and more lies.
Houston Community College Dirty Little Secret
Noticed all the Ads?
Have you all noticed that HCC is all of a sudden spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on advertisement? If you haven't do so. It is part of circumventing state law of using taxpayers monies to promote bonds or annexation. Is it legal yes. Is it ethical, no! There is nothing ethical about the administration or Board of the Houston Community College. Vote NO on the HCC bonds.
Alief opposition To HCC Bonds
The proposed allocation for westside construction does not sit well with some groups in Alief, which was annexed by HCC's taxing district four years ago.
The Alief ISD board of trustees and the Alief Super Neighborhood Council passed resolutions opposing the bond proposal, saying HCC has failed to complete projects promised under the annexation agreement. The groups said the $10 million allocated for the Alief campus in the bond proposal is insufficient.
Not yet finished
Only one floor of a four-story Hayes Road building on the Alief campus has been completed. That building, which is used by the Alief ISD Early College High School, also lacks a library and science labs, according to Sarah Winkler, an Alief school trustee.
"I don't see how that (the westside campus) should be a priority compared to existing facilities that should be finished," said Winkler, who noted that the first Early College class may graduate next year without having had access to a library or science labs. "We've never had campuses without a library. That's just not acceptable to me." Houston Comical, here.
July 19th 2012
The Board voted to place the bonds for a vote, even Carroll Robinson who once claimed that he would not support a bond proposal that raised taxes is on the HCC needs more money train. HCC needs more money like Warren Buffet needs more money. HCC needs new leadership that will not waste millions of dollars buying property at three time market value while they let it sit there, the Westheimer Property and the John O' queen Property. Qatar is a disaster and reports indicate that HCC is at best is breaking even but accounts suggest that they are losing money there. HCC and its' Board members have a history of corruption, Veselka interviews, Chevron Energy Contract, HCC money used for personal items (Qatar). Employees having contractual dealings with HCC at taxpayer's expense. HCC is the most corrupt institution in Houston.
HCC employees who feel that it is time for a change need to work against the Bonds. The administration cannot survive without additional money being pumped in. Once new leadership emerges hopefully all the corruption will come to light and people will go to jail for their part.
HCC counselors what happened to the deal with Perez, you got shafted and you deserve it.
Stop the HCC bonds.
I told you folks that it ain' t happening (counselors), I keep the site up not because of the employees because they deserve what they fight for (not much). It is the taxpayers that need to know how much corruption and ineptitude exists at Houston Community College. Stop the Bonds and get rid of the corruption at HCC.
The Chronicle and Richard Schechter
For six years Richard Schechter has set on the Board of the Houston Community College, the last year as Board Chair. Carroll Robinson is on his first year and immediately started working to clean up the image that Schechter and the rest of the clowns had allowed HCC deteriorate into, one of corruption and graft with a mediocre educational product. Carroll Robinson had to work to gather sufficient signatures to get an ethics item on the agenda. He had to get sufficient signatures from other Trustees to place on the Agenda as the present chair Mary Ann Perez would not place it on the agenda. Richard Schechter working with Perez and the administration did not want the item on the agenda. When that failed, Schechter immediately went into a mode of sending the item to a committee. In Schechter's tirade against Robinson, Schechter failed to mention that his daughter had a contract with a major HCC vendor. The Chronicle, however, makes him out to be facilitator and advocate for ethics reform, here. The Chronicle has become a little whore that has sold its journalistic integrity for a few pieces of silver by way of Yaffe/Deutser, in this case. The Chronicle has every right to praise Robinson but it should not give credit where non is due.
Off Course the Foundation is no different than HCC - A recent request cc: Little Dwayne at 13 - Not I
The letter below was sent to the HCC Foundation (by two individuals, not associated with Inside HCCS) , this was done after the Foundation had thrown all kind of obstacles in the way to prevent providing information as to how it was using funds for the minority male initiatives. For the record that is one of the things that Yaffe/Deutser is suppose to do as part of the $1.5 million annual contract it has with HCC. Have they succeeded? NO! STOP THE CORRUPTION AT HCC! Work to stop the HCC bonds. Remember Yaffe/Deutser in particular Deutser is a friend of HCC Trustee Richard Schechter.
Richard Schechter's Daughter has or had a contract with ESPA, an HCC vendor
No wonder that Richard Schechter all of a sudden seemed to think that campaign contributions were the boogeyman and fought to keep the ethics agenda item from getting to a vote. It was only a year ago when he seemed to go berserk with hate toward a Latina. Richard Schechter believed that the Latina's son had a contract with an HCC vendor. Her son did not have a contract with any vendor that did business with HCC but Richard Schechter's daughter sure does. What else is Richard Schechter hiding? Here is the proof of his daughter's contract with ESPA. Here is a little history on ESPA, notice the names and how much they give to the HCC Trustees. ESPA probably gets more work from HCC than any other vendor. The campaign reports for the Trustees can be found here.
Richard Schechter on Carroll Robinson or is it for Richard Schechter's daughter?
Chris Oliver has a Tamper Tantrum
Watch the very short video clip below and see how Chris Oliver gets up, kinda throws his chair around and walks out of the meeting, stating in a very loud voice "Call me when you want to have a meeting". What precipitated his actions? Chris Oliver had just been denied his little toy, a three (3) million dollar facility at a campus in his district. It is common knowledge that Chris can often be found playing golf. HCC is going to build him a driving range and a putting range for his own personal use ( I guess the students will be allowed there also?). Don't be surprised to find that Art Tyler out there with him as they are golfing buddies, Trustee Bruce Austin's interview. The rest of the Board later backed down (and gave Chris his little toy) after they agreed that they could all get little toys for their districts. We don't want the babies to go around pouting, do we? Counselors didn't they cut your salary by about 20%? Stand up work against the Bonds.