Here’s the letter Fitzy wrote to then mayor, Sharon Quirk-Silva:
Naturally, once safely in office this support for looking into possible, maybe someday, perhaps switching to the Sheriff Department at huge cost savings to the taxpayers of Fullerton evaporated like the morning dew on a summer day. Since gaining office Fitzgerald, along with Jan Flory and Doug “Bud” Chaffee have been resolute in their goal that no reform of the Fullerton Police Department take place and that no acknowledgement of any Culture of Corruption could possibly exist.
Some cynics suggested this letter was only meant to call off pro-recall forces; other cynics suggested this was the price Fitzgerald had to pay for Supervisor Shawn Nelson’s endorsement. Probably it was both. Either way the commitment was thinner than the paper it was printed on. And Fitzgerald never mentioned it again.
This valuable piece of manpower pulls in a generous stipend and benefits as a boardmember of the County Water District, and gets $40,000 per year (via a personal contract) as Nelson’s “technical advisor” at the AQMD. Before that he was also getting paid by being a member of the Orange City Council, Redevelopment Agency and all the other regional commissions he could get himself appointed to. Of course all these agencies had meetings that would have directly conflicted with his $120,000 full-time job at the County.
So what is Bilodeau’s real value to anybody? Here’s County political watchdog Shirley Grindle, offering an opinion, as quoted in Voice of OC:
She also said she’s gotten indications that the mind behind Nelson’s fundraising machinations has been his chief of staff, Denis Bilodeau, who was an Orange councilman and serves on the Orange County Water District board.
“I’m about ready to tell Shawn Nelson, about the best thing he could do for his career is get rid of Denis Bilodeau,” Grindle said.
Once in a while news from the County is so pregnant with consequences for us in Fullerton that we here at FFFF feel obliged to share it with the Friends.
In case you weren’t following the weird story: on Good Friday, 2015 3rd District Supervisor Todd “Super Victim” Spitzer got scared of a Christian proselytizer in a Foothill Ranch Wahoos, went out to his car and returned with handcuffs and a loaded pistol. He “hooked up” this poor sap and waited for the deputies to arrive. Of course nothing came of it. Mr. Bible was released from bondage and everybody went his own way.
Pretty weird, in a “dress up like a cop and play” sort of way. I mean, who drives around with handcuffs in his trunk, right?
Unfortunately for Spitzer, news of the bizarre incident was finally leaked to The OC Register who reported on it in August 2015, much to the merriment of the pistol-packin’ supervisor’s numerous detractors. But the story gets better – or worse – depending on your point of view.
Apparently Spitzer couldn’t leave the depiction of himself as a nutcase, alone. Sort of like obsessively picking at a scab. So he enlisted the help of Jean Pasco, the County’s press release writer to write some sort of clarifying/absolving press release. Although this document never saw the light of publication, the Voice of OC got wind of it and did a PRA request for all related docs. Hilariously, the County refused, claiming that unfinished documents don’t constitute “records.” The Voice sued the County for release of the relevant material. The County fought back.
It got worse. Under Spitzer’s guidance County Counsel demanded to depose Voice publisher Norberto Santana, ridiculously suggesting that conversations between him and Spitzer were relevant to the matter. Voice objected to the blatant harassment attempt.
Meantime, the completely unnecessary lawsuit drags on, the costs of which, when the County inevitably fails, will be borne by you and me. And where is our own Supervisor Shawn Nelson during all this? Nowhere to be seen or heard as far as I can tell. Evidently, he, too, believes that we peons are only to know things when he and his pals at the County feel like sharing, and that it is right and proper that we pay the costs of them keeping public information from the public.
The other day a sharp-eyed commenter noticed that OC Supervisor Shawn Nelson is rolling into town on Tuesday to make a “presentation” about his homeless shelter proposal over on State College to the City Council. The County wants to buy a run-down commercial building and put north OC’s homeless in it. They are already in escrow.
As a former liberal myself I am very well-aware of the idea among my former soul-mates that everything is about education, as in: if only these dummies in Fullerton knew the real story there is no way they could possibly oppose our grandiose plan.
All I can say is beware of politicians with big ideas and lots of our money.
Friends, here is a letter sent to Mayor Bruce Whitaker and thoughtfully provided to us from a citizen who live in the Chapman Park neighborhood across the street from the proposed site of a County homeless shelter.
I omit this individual’s name and number to spare them annoying calls from the bureaucrats but it was included in the letter to Whitaker:
Subject:proposed homeless shelter
This is in regards to the proposed homeless shelter to be opened in the old Linder’s Furniture building on State College in Fullerton. I am a long time Fullerton home owner (almost 30 years) and live in the Chapman Park tract directly across State College from the proposed site. I would like to voice my adamant opposition to this project! If the shelter goes in at this site you are opening us up to security and safety issues, property value drops & outright living in fear. We have a park in our tract that will potentially become the hangout for the people of the shelter, all they have to do is walk across State College Blvd and they are at the pedestrian entrance to our housing tract. This park is a little league park full of kids on the weekends, and homeowners including myself walk the park frequently in the mornings and evenings. A great many of the homeowners in this tract are older single women like myself who live alone and the thought of our community/tract being opened up to this kind of influx of homeless and mentally ills is frightening. I have already had my house broken into and robbed in the recent past and what is being proposed will bery likely increase the chance of this happening again. It’s bad enough that our neightborhood has been turned into a parking lot by the students from Cal State Fullerton and the city won’t help us with that issue, now we are going to be asked to have the residents of this shelter desend on us also. I know this seems like the old “not in my backyard” standard but truthfully this is a very disconcerting and potentially dangerous situation for us. It seems like there must be an available building in a more industrial location rather than this one so close to homes, little league fields and schools. And what happens when the over/under pass project reaches State College?
I know my voice probably doesn’t matter and nothing will change as it appears deals have already been made and this is being railroaded through but I hope at the very least that the pedestrian entrance at the corner of State College and Fender will be completely sealed up. And when our houses get broken into or tagged and the mentally ill and homeless accost us at the park I hope you will personally come visit us to see what you have allowed.
A very unhappy Fullerton resident
Hopefully this tax-payer’s voice will matter, although the odds seem against it.
In the wake of the Kelly Thomas murder at the hands of the FPD, two different yet eerily similar tactics emerged for deflecting responsibility away from the cops.
Fullerton’s antique liberal crowd quickly banded together so that society itself could be blamed, not the FPD: the problem was not murderous, corrupt or even incompetent cops. Oh, no. The problem was one of homelessness and the solution was to provide a homeless shelter! Why Kelly would probably even be alive today!
On the other hand, the anonymous cop-protectors keep insisting that the problem lay with poor parenting for Kelly’s death, as if a schizophrenic, 35 year-old man was somehow the responsibility of his parents, and as if that somehow exculpates the six cops who beat him to death and stood around laughing as he died in a pool of his own blood.
Of course both groups relied heavily upon a completely comical whitewash of the FPD Culture of Corruption by paid-for opinion of Michael Gennaco.
The County of Orange’s attempt to cram a permanent homeless shelter in east Fullerton across the street from single-family homes and an elementary school have taught us four things, so far.
First, it is very clear that no Fullerton elected representatives were told anything about this high-handed plan. Second, the County can do it with or without the City’s agreement. Third, nobody at the County gives a damn that they will be paying $3.15 million for a broken down old building that nobody knows the cost to make habitable. Four, the media will never report any of this.
As to the first point, here is a report about a meet and greet event by Fullerton Mayor Bruce Whitaker, who asked the County for a few weeks’ delay so that the City Council could learn just what the County has in store for us. Request denied.
And here is an e-mail we received from some local resident who says he has just started a petition to seek redress:
Hello!I’ve started the petition “Fullerton city council: Stop the County from opening a 24/7 homeless shelter at 301 S St College Bl” and need your help to get it off the ground.Will you take 30 seconds to sign it right now? Here’s the link:
This is a 29,000 square foot building that is located near an elementary school, park and houses. This homeless shelter will make Fullerton the dumping ground for homeless. Crime will increase and spread to the whole area. This deal is being done without much awareness from the public. A life long friend of County Supervisor Nelson stands to make nearly 100k from the deal. This is bad for North OC. This shelter will end up looking like skid row in downtown LA where crime and drug use is rampant. Fullerton is not LA.
You can sign my petition by clicking here.
Well, good luck with that! Apparently the County can do whatever it likes and your County Supervisor isn’t interested in your opinion.
It appears that the good folks down at the County of Orange, allied with the local professional do-gooders are intent on placing a regional homeless shelter at 301 S. State College, in Fullerton.
The only problem is that nobody decided to let the neighbors know; or, even our own City Council, it seems.
The County Board of Supervisors voted 5-0 to proceed with the purchase of the old Linder’s Furniture store for $3,150,000. Yes, you read that right. Fullerton Mayor Bruce Whitaker showed up to the meeting asking for more time so that his City Council could at least be afforded the opportunity to at least get briefed on the matter (gee that would have been nice). Some neighbors showed up, too, but to no avail. They may as well have stayed home.
The project, apparently the brainchild of our own Supervisor Shawn Nelson, is located across the street from a single family neighborhood and an elementary school, too. It’s hard to tell what is motivating Nelson, but judging by comments to the Voice of OC and the Register he seems intent on proving to the housing bureaucrats and Fullerton’s liberals what effective leadership looks like. Unfortunately he forgot that leaders need to build consensus around their ideas, not dictate them from on high.
Anyway, the pictures of the building on the County’s website show a decrepit 45 year-old building that I think is going to have to be completely rebuilt before humans can spend the night in it. Nobody has even begun to calculate those costs, although the County has 150 days to do “due diligence” whatever that may mean. You may count on many times the purchase price before they are done; running the operation will be a non-profit paid for by you and me.
The other four Supervisors are probably snickering at Nelson behind his back. They’ll get credit for their humanitarian propensities. East Fullerton gets the booby prize.
Dear Friends, we received the following e-mail from an unhappy resident of the neighborhood around Chapman Park, across the street from the location the County is proposing to buy for $3.15 million to transform into a permanent homeless shelter.
It always interests me to see that those politicians and bureaucrats who support obnoxious land uses of one kind or another always seem suitably removed, geographically, from any undesirable effects of their decisions.
Take the case of the permanent homeless shelter proposed by the County (and possibly our own City Council – nobody really knows what has been agreed to behind closed doors – with zero input from us) on State College. It would be located across the street from the Chapman Park neighborhood where we live. To the north are two story apartments and an elementary school; right next door and to the rear are other commercial properties. But it is a long, long way from any residence of the decision makers. Surprised? Not me.
We will be told that such facilities need to be built where public transportation exists. Okay. But in the next breath we learn that getting the homeless out of downtown Fullerton is required. How come? That is the very heart of the transportation network in north Orange County. La Palma Park in Anaheim is ground zero for the homeless population of north orange County and is located astride not one but THREE bus lines.
Since the County’s only requirements are that their shelter be on a bus route and away from downtown Fullerton, here’s a thought. Let’s build the shelter next to Hillcrest Park, or near the Brea Dam – near two bus lines – on City owned property that won’t cost anybody a dime. Of course it would be pretty near where Jan Flory and Doug Chaffee live. Or maybe it could be built on some open space in Coyote Hills – near the Euclid bus line and not far from Jennifer Fitzgerald and Shawn Nelson’s homes.
Well they finally did it. Our pathetic county Board of Supervisors finally got rid of their pathetic excuse for a CEO, Tom Mauk. Of course they let him call it a retirement and they gave him $270,000. And it took about nine months after he helped cover up the sordid details of Carlos Bustamante’s sex assaults on female County employees.
Of course the Supervisors should have fired both their HR director and Mauk when news of the 20 page report that detailed the behavior (that has earned Busty a total of 12 felony charges courtesy of the District Attorney) came out. But they didn’t. The sad Supervisor from the Third District, Bill Campbell actually commended Mauk for a job well-done. The female members of the Board, Pat Bates and Janet Nguyen, who should have been most shocked about the whole thing, made no public statements, perhaps hoping the thing would just go away.
It didn’t. And the embarrassment got so bad even Mauk and his allies knew the jig was up – many months later.
Just in case you were wondering who would take the helm of the county ship of state in the time of crisis, scandal, turmoil, and erosion of public trust, the selection by the Board seems underwhelming, the present Finance Director, Robert Franz. He will be Acting CEO until an Interim CEO is chosen until a Permanent CEO can be discovered. It’s government, get it: and a completely dysfunctional one at that. The whole place needs to be cleaned out, and the sooner the better.