torrance_daily_breeze_20091025_A16 by sgvnonline

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DAILYBREEZE.COM

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2009

Advertorial-Paid Advertisement The following is a continuation account as told by the Board of Governors of the Scottsdale Townhouses Association.

The Carson Sheriff Department and City Clerk Involvement Since elections have been held and primarily overseen by an independent management company for the last 9 years, the statement made by Marco Caal that Balque doesn’t let people vote as not only false, but ignorant. Again, this is another example of Caal’s attempt to further his and Woody Rowell’s agenda by making inaccurate statements and unsupported accusations.

But hearing from a “legal” Board representative wasn’t enough for Kawagoe to abstain from her involvement. On the day of the election, Kawagoe received a phone call from Stanley Feldsott, of Feldsott & Lee Law, Scottsdale’s legal counsel. Feldsott informed Kawagoe that the election she was supporting and participating in was in fact “illegal.” After speaking with Feldsott, Balque phoned Kawagoe to re-affirm what Feldsott discussed with her. Kawagoe stated, “I don’t know what the group was planning for that evening, but I’m going anyway.” Balque told Kawagoe that if she or anyone attempts to enter the Association’s office they would be escorted off the premises. Kawagoe did not inquire of the legal Board as to the nature and validity of the improperly called meeting. In fact, no inquiries were made of the Association from anyone of authority at City Hall. As far as the Scottsdale Board of Governors is concerned, it was obvious as to the subjective position taken by several city officials. They clearly selected the constituents they wanted to support! “The investigator told Balque’s tenant that It was made very clear to Rowell, the City of Carson officials, and the Association members that the current Board was not obligated to open the club house for the illegal election. As such, they did not. However, upon arrival of a selected group of Carson Sheriff deputies, one of which escorted Kawagoe, argued that the Board members had to open the clubhouse to host this illegal election. The officer further stated that ‘if it’s the City’s business, it’s our business.” In fact, one Sheriff Deputy commanded that the Board members comply and threatened to haul the Association’s staff off to jail. Upon receiving this information Balque engaged in an extremely heated discussion with the same deputy. Balque simply stated that some of the officers were clearly out of line and out of their jurisdiction, this was a civil matter and the Board would not be coerced to comply because city officials were involved. Balque and the Board maintained that if the City has no right to enter private property, the Carson Sheriff had no right to ignore the civil code and force the Association to comply; the Board would not allow unlawful entry into the Association clubhouse. As requested by the Board, Edison Security audaciously held the line. Fortunately, other Carson Sheriff Deputies, less biased, arrived at the scene and assisted in diffusing the situation.

“The HUD agency has approved hundreds of units for safe occupancy for more than 20 years, under worse structural and environmental conditions, but now they have a problem. Why now are HUD investigators on the prowl? Did the City of Carson use its political power to solicit HUD investigators?”

The illegal election supported by the City of Carson’s Clerk, Helen Kawagoe, called by Rowell and Caal’s faction resulted in a big showdown between – not Balque’s security company as reported in The Daily Breeze – but the Scottsdale Townhouse Association’s armed security officers and some of the Carson Sheriff deputies. As stated above, it was an illegal election, which means that the Association is not obligated to make the clubhouse available. However, when Balque informed Helen Kawagoe that she was participating in an illegal election, Kawagoe stated that she was “told” to do it by Jerry Groomes, City of Carson Manager. If Ms. Kawagoe was told this by the City Manager, it is certainly troubling that the City Manager would give a directive where absolutely no authority exists for the City to tell an independent association when or how to hold elections.

he understood that her landlord was the person causing all the problems cited in the newspaper and wanted to make sure she didn’t have any issues with Balque. This tenant was surprised by the visit, but was more so alarmed by the accusations made against Balque as if she was the responsible party for all the structural problems.”

Subsequently, a tow truck arrived with a locksmith and informed the security officers that there was a court order to force open the Association’s doors, evict everyone, and change the locks. Another faction member, allegedly summoned the locksmith. No court document of any sort was ever furnished. The faction’s intentions were to take over the Association illegally. How absurd! How does the action of safeguarding the Association’s office against an illegal election, an obvious attempt to seize the premises unlawfully and illegally change the locks, equate to an act of intimidation? What makes this act outrageous is that city officials, staff, and specific sheriff deputies were involved. Of course they’ll deny it – especially the politicians.

“In the year 2001, a City of Carson employee invited Balque to a secret meeting, unbeknownst to Balque, to request her to submit her resignation to the Board. This occurred after Balque challenged the way Scottsdale’s appointed manager was managing operations.”

This bold attempt is just another example of why the Association has security guarding the office from unlawful entry. As indicated to the Association members in previous correspondences, the security guards assigned to the Association’s office are there to protect staff and homeowners while they transact business. Contrary to recent articles by Maddaus and faction fliers circulated within the community, the Association’s office has been open for business. The only difference is that it’s by appointment primarily. However, for work orders and emergencies, homeowners may call in and have their concerns addressed. Any common area emergency is addressed as soon as possible. For many years interested parties relied upon intimidation against the Association. So far, the appointment base operation is working out very well and staff and homeowners have shown much appreciation for the new schedule. These events lead right into the rumors surrounding the Boys & Girls Club short-lived occupancy. Balque was a main supporter for allowing the Boys & Girls Club to provide services to the Scottsdale community. Board members Jorge Miranda, Bent Andersen, Flavia Andersen, and selected staff were also very much involved in the planning stage of implementing this fine program.

Balque took off many days from her job in order to meet and confer with Dela Walters, Site Manager and Kim Richards, Director, Boys & Girls Club, and her staff to ensure the success of the program. Because of Dela Walters and Balque efforts such as knocking on doors and distributing information about the club, they enlightened the residents for the program, The Kaboom project with Kool Aid as the sponsor had just been completed; the Scottsdale community and several “Shortly after the appointment, the abuother volunteers came together to build an excellent playground for the children. Yaci Logan, also a Boys & Girls club emsive behavior by management began and ployee, significantly contributed to the success of the program. Similarly to Balque, Logan grew up in the gated community and understood the cultural dynamics; as such, she was able to mitigate some of the differences amongst the youth. Months was displayed towards the predominant prior, the Scottsdale Boys & Girls Club hosted the first basketball tournament. Balque, a former City of Carson and High Hispanic Scottsdale staff and subcontracSchool Basketball Official and her sister, a former WNBA and Women’s NCAA Official graciously officiated all of the games tors; the Board was outraged and Balque that Saturday afternoon. There were many other sparkling moments for the club. Subsequently, the Boys & Girls Club, unilaterally, shut down for several months due to a burglary. Afterward, the faction evolved and began causing friction within the demanded answers.” community. The Association was warned by a staff member of the Boys & Girls Club that there would be attempts to break into the building in hopes of taking over the affairs of the Association and their planned entry would be during the Boys & Girls Club days of operation. After careful consideration for the safety of the children, Boys & Girls Club employees and Association’s staff, the Board voted to close the club indefinitely. Several Boys & Girls Club employees had family members involved with the faction; there was no assured way of preventing mayhem other than to close the club. Sure, there were other concerns such as the rising cost the Association was incurring in maintaining the building and some challenges with the on-site supervision, but Balque and Richards were working on a plan of action to remedy those problems. Nevertheless, the faction was the main contributing factor that convinced the Board to act accordingly. The Daily Breeze Articles In the first article published in the Daily Breeze, “Fight for Power,” Maddaus referred to, an attorney hired by a group of homeowners. On the day of that election, for some reason, an attorney thought he was going to litigate his way through the electoral process. The group he represented refused to follow appropriate voting procedures; they resorted to a mob behavior. The Association security asked the attorney to please leave the premises. He refused to comply. Shortly after, security escorted the attorney off the premises. Purportedly, many of the proxies were fraudulent. Perhaps that’s why the idea of “checking in” didn’t appeal to them. To date, the faction members have launched their second character assassination campaign. In their pursuit of gaining proxy support for the next election, they’ve created yet another farce in accusing “When Jerry Groomes, City Manager, was Balque of buying up homes in Scottsdale using Association money. They have recruited renters also to harass Balque’s informed of these questionable acts of his tenant; on several occasions, they’ve requested Balque’s tenant to sign a document in support of their movement - that is, subordinate, he supported the employee to oust Balque and the Board. This fiasco could easily become a 500-page editorial, but due to time restraints this article attempts to cover as much as possible, so that all would know the truth about the political abuse and harassment the Scottsdale Townhouses Association has received for more than 20 years. Accordingly, this next section will most certainly refute the false statements, gross inaccuracies and in some cases, absurd inferences made with regards to the City of Carson alleged attempts to save the Scottsdale Association Estates, but as reported by the Daily Breeze, hindered, due to Balque’s continued success in keeping the City of Carson from pouring millions of dollars into the community. Please understand that when the City of Carson is referenced, this does not refer to City employees collectively. There are many excellent city employees throughout most of the departments, many of which who either mentored Balque, grew up with, or have worked with the Board and mean no harm towards Scottsdale. Please do not take offense when references and statements are made regarding other city employees and officials, your co-workers, and perhaps superiors – these statements are not directed towards you.

and found absolutely nothing wrong with her behavior. Are there other possible reasons the City of Carson despises Balque and would like to see her removed from the Board? Sure. Let’s dig deeper.”

“Congresswoman Juanita McDonald, now deceased, published in her newsletter that the Scottsdale community was slated to receive $10 million in funding from Fannie Mae for renovation. Shortly after this press release, Balque was approached by a Mayor (who was council member at this time), (Mayor #3) where he strongly suggested that the Association hire or recommend for hire a specific security company to trim the common area palm trees and In recent years, Council Member Mike Gipson frequently expressed his support and complimented the Board on several perhaps provide painting services – you know occasions for the common area improvements. Council Member Elito Santarina also met with the Board on several occasions. He displayed support in the direction Balque and the current Board was leading the Association; he ac- all that good stuff the Board wanted to hear.”
It’s very interesting as well as unfortunate that none of those Council Members and Planning and Redevelopment personnel that sat over lunch numerous times with Balque and the Board discussing possible ways the City could help over the last 10 years, had an ounce of courage to come forth and set the record straight. Balque and the current Board pleaded with the City for financial assistance endlessly, but to no avail. The primary reason as reported repeatedly by City of Carson representatives was, “because you are a private community, we are unable to assist you in any significant capacity, particularly financially.” Meetings have been documented, written correspondences between the parties, and emails are available to support these events. Should anyone like to verify the validity of Balque’s involvement, copies of video recordings and meeting minutes of Balque’s efforts in petitioning help alongside representatives from Dianne Feinstein’s office and other government agencies should be available from the City’s archives. During the last 10 years, Balque and other Board members, on several occasions took leave from work countless times to meet with Council members, Mayors and City staff – both past and present. knowledged their efforts in accomplishing so much during such a difficult time. The Board was most appreciative of the interest Santarina took in the community. Council Member Gipson, Mayor Jim Dear, and the Planning and Redevelopment staff attended an in-service at the Scottsdale Townhouses complex where a four-hour PowerPoint production and site walk through the complex was arranged. During the presentation, the Board clearly demonstrated the disrepair, crime statistics, social and political problems, the overall severity of the Association’s financial state of affairs, and of course many of the great accomplishments made to date. Financial data was made available to all parties. Specific pictures that were shown clearly illustrated the condition of the common area. The pictures also showed the in-house maintenance working on mainline plumbing and other projects. It wasn’t until Captain Rogers of the Carson Sheriff Department assigned a COPS Team program to the Scottsdale community, did code enforcement begin to address those issues. This is so because the Association staff and Board members made several phone calls regarding every imaginable condition that existed, but as usual it fell on deaf ears. There was no evidence of anything significant resulting from previous efforts. In fact, during a phone conversation, a code enforcement manager told Balque that the reason code enforcement and other departments within the city did not service the Scottsdale community was due to “political reasons.” What do political reasons have to do with servicing a citizenry that “Shortly after the Board refusal to get involved were also paying their share of county and city taxes? So often, ad nauseum, the Association was told that because it is private property, the Sheriff’s Department was limited to what they can do. And to a diminutive extent, that’s true. in these highly questionable business offers, However, this Board expected, at the very least, adequate policing addressing loitering as commonly done at the singlethe talk of the $10 million ceased. Despite the dwelling homes, timely responses to hazardous code violations such as full kitchens, auto mechanic and paint shops Board’s numerous inquiries, to date, no one constructed in garages for business, illegal room additions where some homes occupied more than 15 tenants. Thanks Sergeant Gama and the COPS violations as from the City can say what happened to the $10 to Lieutenant Bolin,other offenses were addressed. team and others such as Deputy Shives, many of theseBoard hosted well as a sundry of As a result of the Carson Deputy Sheriffs efforts, the million slated for the Scottsdale community.” an appreciation dinner for the officers. However, after the COPS program ended, the days of old returned; that is, the Scottsdale community became the stepchild once again. On the bright side, there seems to be sunlight at the end of the tunnel. Just recently, and to much surprise, Balque received a phone call from a Deputy Sheriff; the deputy called to inform Balque that they were sending a squad car immediately to address the disturbance of the peace situation at the Scottsdale location.
PAID FOR BY SCOTTSDALE ASSOCIATION 23400 South Avalon Bl, Carson, CA 90745 4 of 5


								
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