The Sherbeck Stadium Swindle

Fullerton College is going to ruin the nearby neighborhoods when they build the boondoggle that will be Sherbeck Stadium and they are going to use the fact that you residents didn’t yell at them as the very reason for building an unnecessary Stadium when there is already a High School stadium literally within walking distance of the College in a town with another already under-utilized stadium at C.S.U.F..

If you don’t want Fullerton College to go ahead with their plans you need to write a letter to them to tell them why you’re against it. You have until tomorrow, 03 December 2016, to get your letter postmarked & in the mail or they will ignore you and you’ll have nobody to blame but yourself for sitting out on this issue.

I don’t even live in the neighborhood and I’m writing a letter on behalf of a friend of mine who does live in that neighborhood. Because I’m a friend and it affects both his and Fullerton’s future. That’s why I’m here in the first place.

(more…)

The Sound of Silence

I would have done it even cheaper...
I would have done it even cheaper…

Not much has come out of Fullerton Junior College lately on the case of cop-turned-security guard Dino Skokos who handed out an unwarranted beat down on an undernourished FJC student in October.

A writer for The Hornet named Madalyn Amato,  reports that although an “independent investigator” has been engaged, nothing else has been forthcoming. The fact that the investigator, a law firm called Currier & Hudson, solely specializes in acting as defense counsel for government agencies, should send out appropriate warning bells. See where this is going?

In the aftermath of outrage, the bureaucratic playbook is being executed as expected.

First, ignore any criminality on the part of the district employee and announce an independent investigation, with the goal of diverting responsibility, or even better, procrastinating ’til everybody’s forgotten about the incident.

Naturally, the independent investigator is really just a carefully selected government defense pettifogger, hired to relieve the agency of as much liability as possible and absorb any leftover PR issues. Of course, hiring a law firm comes with desirable effects, such as the benefit of attorney client privilege. See, it’s easier to control an investigation if the investigator can’t actually reveal any findings detrimental to the institution.

The cleanup is underway
The cleanup is underway

And now we wait. The employee takes a paid vacation, the real police fail to deliver a criminal investigation, and NOCCCD eventually pays out a quiet settlement to the victim who will make a deal in a civil courtroom. Nothing to see here.

Close enough...
Close enough…

And now let’s let Fullerton Junior College President Greg Schulz take us home via The Hornet article:

President Greg Schulz promised the college’s full dedication in reaching a conclusion regarding the incident.

Do Not Trust the Trustees

On Thursday, November 17, the North Orange County Community College District held an the Environmental Impact Report scoping session for the Measure J funded improvements to Fullerton College.

As  you know from our previous report on this matter, the proposed improvements include a football field (estimated during the presentation to cost $4 million to build, so consider that a low floor to the likely final cost) but does not include improvements to the Veteran’s Center. When this discrepancy was addressed, Fullerton College President Greg Schultz gave the following explanation:

  1. We have to understand that the NOCCCD cannot do everything it would like to do with Measure J funds, so they have not been able to make the improvements to the Veteran’s Center at this time;
  2. The stadium will be funded through other funds, not Measure J money and he promises to not use Measure J money to build the stadium.

Let’s take these two responses one at a time, shall we?

First, the characterizing of the veteran’s center as just one of many improvements that the NOCCCD would like to perform is extremely dishonest. Let’s re-wind the clock again to back when NOCCCD sought voter approval for their $574 million construction bond:

(more…)

Don’t Kneel to Fullerton College’s Football Stadium Demands

So who’s up for a proposed construction project that could “substantially degrade the existing visual character or quality of the site and its surroundings” and could “create a new source of substantial light or glare would adversely affect day or nighttime views in the area” according to the Environmental Impact Report?

Doesn’t sound appealing? Well, you may want to attend the scoping session on Thursday, November 17, 2016, at 6 pm, at the Fullerton College Student Center, Rooms 224, 226 and 228 (don’t ask – I’ll be wandering around campus myself) and let them know.

I should note that this little boondoggle is not the City’s doing, for once. For this we can thank the North Orange County Community College District and their Board of Trustees. The Master Plan Initial Study, which discussed the Environmental Impacts on Section 6.3, can be found here: )

fc-map

Pictured: Sherbeck Field. Not pictured: Rooms 224-228. Also not pictured: The football stadium that already exists across the street.

Some time ago, the NOCCCD Board of Trustees were considering the idea of building a football stadium on campus, thus sparing their football team the humiliation of playing football at <gasp> a high school stadium – and one that’s less than 100 yards away from the campus proper, to boot. Residents of the Princeton Circle neighborhood objected, and the plans for a football stadium appeared, to the residents at least, to be scrapped. Now the trustees are looking to add 4,500 stadium seats and field lighting that could remain on until 10 pm. In addition, while I have not independently verified this, nearby residents contend that the proposed lighting would consist of six 100 foot tall LED towers, which if true would cause a significant amount of light pollution.

(more…)

Molly’s Problem

 

Nothing intelligent was forthcoming...
Nothing intelligent was forthcoming…

Could be trouble’s a-brewin’ for our old acquaintance, North OC Community College District trustee Molly McClanahan.

Now, in case you’re not familiar with the life and times of McClanahan, here’s a primer: rightfully recalled from the Fullerton City Council in 1994 for imposing a stupid and unnecessary utility tax (at the behest of the public employee unions), she was tossed a little political plum as an appointee to the NOCCCD. There she has been a reliable cheerleader for a bloated, overpaid and incompetent administration for over 20 years.

A few years back we followed the tale of the magical football stadium at FJC, an embarrassment on so many levels that I won’t recount them, just give you Loyal Friends the link.

Seven years have passed and apparently the football practice facility is still slated to become a completely unnecessary game day venue – given the fact of the FHS stadium a few hundred yards away and the CSUF stadium less than two miles away. looks like some of the neighbors are still as unhappy about this as ever. In fact, somebody has started a website dedicated to pressuring McClanahan to act on behalf of her constituents instead of her district bureaucrats, with the promise of a recall. Since they linked to the old post of ours, I felt compelled to return the favor.

Now Molly may have a problem, maybe. Recalling anybody is hard, especially in a big JC district that nobody even thinks much about. Yet the NOCCCD has seven much smaller individual districts. I don’t know for sure, but I’m supposing the individual trustee districts have about 70,000 people, so gathering signatures would not be impossible. But would anybody off the hill behind the campus even care?

Unfortunately, the website isn’t real clear on what how McClanahan is supposed to do anything at this point. Maybe the proprietor of that blog will stop by and give us some more information. One thing is certain, though. Whoever is behind this is pretty pissed off. The hostility comes through loud and clear; and tellingly, there is a pointed reference to McClanahan’s illegal gift-taking from a bond peddler and the consequent FPPC fine.

CSUF Giving Up on “University Heights” Fiasco?

Those birds won’t be coming home to roost. Not if CSUF can help it.

A few years ago Cal State Fullerton decided to get into the housing business for its employees. Why public employees should get any sort of preferential treatment for housing is beyond me, but that’s the society in which we live.

Anyway, the whole thing turned out to be a massive disaster, but not an embarrassment, of course, for such things are not permitted in the lofty ether of educratic circles. FFFF posted about it here, and here.

Recap: the university made a deal with the Elks for land up on Elk Hill and sold a bond to build a bunch of cookie-cutter tract duplexes that were to be sold to professors and administrators, and such like, and subsidized by you and me. The only problem was that an underlying deed restriction required sale to others in the same category, an encumbrance that turned out to be a lot more than a mere nuisance, especially when real estate prices were plummeting all over the place.

The university also had the responsibility to make monthly payments to the Elks for their land, which were to passed on to lucky buyers: a sort of Mello-Roos arrangement, if you will.

The eggheads never made it to Egghead Hill

But nobody was buying. So the university opened up residence to any government workers. Still no sales. Finally they just started renting them out to anybody with a cleaning deposit and first month’s rent. Could it get worse?

Looks like it could. Persistent rumors suggest that CSUF wants out of the University heights disaster altogether by completely removing the deed restriction and just selling them off – individually or as a group – no doubt at fire sale prices. They obviously need the cash.

The losses on the original deal would be quietly swept under the rug – no doubt with diminishing fund balances bailing out the catastrophe.

And what for? According to an acquaintance at Western Law School, CSUF wants to buy their facility for $20,000,000, give or take, and metastasize across State College.

It’s pretty clear to me that the CSUF appetite for real-estate wheeling and dealing is insatiable, even as the CSU system teeters on the financial brink. It’s also clear that nobody is going to be held accountable for the University Heights quagmire. F. “Dick” Jones, the City mastermind, is recalled; his buddy, former City manager Chris is fatly pensioned off; Bill Dickerson, the CSUF architect of the fiasco is retired, too. CSUF President, the dopey Milton Gordon? You guessed it. Gone, as well.

Would it be asking too much for our State Assemblyman Chris Norby to demand an inquiry on what unfolded up on Elk Hill?

 

Troy ASB Election Rigged: Whistleblower Takes Fall

A recent Register feature story “ASB Election Rigged” raises a lot of troubling questions.

Bottom Line: The advisor who rigged this year’s ASB election (and possibly those of earlier years—no way to know) remains on staff. The student who proved the wrongdoing—Jacob Bigham–was suspended, stripped of the Vice Presidency he legitimately won and banned from future ASB participation.

High school hero

Huh?

Since accessing the advisor’s database was the only way to prove fraud, why is he punished? Without his vigilance, how many future ASB elections would be rigged without anyone knowing?

If the whole purpose of student elections is to inculcate democratic values, what message does this send to students?

If an ASB advisor does not trust the electoral judgment of Troy High School students —ranked consistently among the nation’s highest performing—at what other schools are such elections routinely overruled without anyone knowing?

Is the sanctity of student elections protected by law? While the State Education Code is vague, the Elections Code is very specific in defining “election fraud” as applying it to “all elections.” No distinction is made. Just last spring, an arrest was made in a case of election in a student election at Cal State San Marcos.

The unilateral, secretive, intentional nullification of an election is as fundamental abuse of power as can be committed against democratic values. And exposing such an abuse is as high a service as a citizen can perform. Thank you, Jacob Bigham. You are one true Troy Warrior.

Beechwood Teacher Beats Rap. So Far.

Remember that strange episode up at Beechwood School a couple of months ago when parents were called in for a really scary meeting and not really told anything? Some teacher did something. Somewhere. Somehow. FSD Superintendent Mitch Hovey was just double-talking hard.

Now the OC Register is reporting that the still unnamed teacher’s offense – having “inappropriate” materials on his computer at school – does not rise to the level of a crime. At least that’s what Acting Chief Dan Hughes reported after an FPD investigation was submitted to our hard-working DA (okay, no snickering). Says Hughes:

“The investigation discovered potentially inappropriate photographs and videos on a school computer assigned to the teacher. But I am pleased to report that in this case, there is no evidence to suggest any Beechwood students were victims of a crime.”

Well, that’s good news, although what the guy had on his computer that caused all the hubbub remains shrouded in secrecy.

But according to the article Mr. Teacher isn’t out of the Beechwoods yet, and remains on “administrative” (presumably paid) leave while the Fullerton School District pursues its own investigation.

Jeez, Fullerton must be the public employee investigation capital of the Western World.

 

Fullerton High Vice Principal Shuttled Off Campus

The OC Register is reporting that FUHS Vice Principal Joe Abell has been removed from campus and is cooling his heels at District HQ, presumably until the furor dies down about his yanking a student off stage at a school-sponsored “Mr. Fullerton” contest.

Apparently the boy,  Kearian Giertz, 17, wandered off the FUHS Indian reservation and made unscripted comments about hoping to find and legally wed the (male) light of his life.

As always, thought of the Friends are welcome. Please try your best to be mature.

 

Gay Kid Hauled Off Stage at FHS

According to Tracy Woods of the Voice of OC(EA), here, a bit of a dust up is occurring at Fullerton High School over a student constestant who was yanked offstage during something called a “Mr. Fullerton” competition by Assistant Principal, Joe Abell. The kid’s offense? Apparently he told the audience that he hoped he could find Mr. Right, and that he hoped in ten years gay marriage would be legal in California. From the Voice of OC(EA):

According the the district’s statement, “an Assistant Principal removed a male student from the stage during the Mr. Fullerton competition for making what the Assistant Principal believed to be a statement that was off script and not pre-approved.”

It’s good to know that the justification for this errant behavior was that a student had deviated from a script pre-approved by one of our esteemed educrats. We wouldn’t want anybody being able to think on his feet, now would we?

FHSD Superintendant George Giokaris has sent out a letter of apology for the inappropriate behavior of Mr. Abell, given that the kid broke no school rules. That’s great, but the damage has been done. Meanwhile, I congratulate the unnamed kid for standing up for his Constitutional rights.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zB7UuXCk_p4