Wow. It’s sort of weird. I spend a few months in eastern Nevada and when I get back it seems like nothing has changed. It was way back in February that Joe did a recap on the doings of Pam Keller – and what a recap it was. We had over 130 comments, most from some pathetic Keller apologist calling him/herself 4th SD Observer.
And today I learned from a pretty reliable source that last night the Fullerton School Board renewed the Keller/Collaborative contract. You remember, the contract that permits Keller to be an FSD employee while in actuality she goes gallavanting around Fullerton, latte cup in hand, hobnobbing with other professional do-gooders, and taking credit for real philanthropy performed by others.
Anyway, I gather that the vote was 3-2, with Bev Berryman and Lynn Thornley, to their credit, dissenting. As usual Ed Royce liberals Hilda Sugarman and Ellen Ballard voted yes; and of course our old friend Minard Duncan had to go along, too. That figures. He has popped up here occasionally to inform us of how hard Pam works.
So what ever happened to the Fullerton Collaborative? You remember… Pam Keller’s non-profit with the curiously convoluted contract with the Fullerton School District that provides payment to herself , all of those nice government benefits but none of that pesky accountability.
Keller is attempting to renew her contract with the school district at the board meeting tomorrow night. The contract allows her to work as a private organization with little oversight while still collecting all the pension and benefits of a school teacher.
Anyone who takes issue with the school district acting as a financial conduit for the shenanigans of a well-connected liberal activist should show up and be heard. If you’d like to review the myriad of conflicts and liabilities that this arrangement provides, start with the Pam Keller Recap and continue to the Fullerton Collaborative archives.
The meeting is Tuesday, July 20th at 5:30PM at the district board room. The Collaborative giveaway is listed as item 2c on the agenda. Plenty of our Friends will be there!
For the past six weeks I have been visiting the Fullerton Collaborative website periodically to determine when, if ever, the Collabricorns were actually going to put any activities on their calendar. It was a complete blank. For the whole year. And that was interesting because the blurb above the calendar ever so earnestly solicited public participation in the many upcoming Collaborative events.
I couldn’t figure it out. The Collaborative has a well-remunerated Executive Director, Pam Keller, and surely that type of administrative chore would fall under her job responsibilities. Having no calendar of events didn’t look too good. Was Keller just too darn busy? Too lazy? Does the Collaborative really not care much about public participation? Or was there just really not much going on?
Now we may never know. On my visit to the website – www.fullertoncollaborative.org – yesterday, I was immediately shuffled off the the Collaborative’s “Facebook” page. Now that looks pretty bush league for a non-profit to suddenly take its website offline.
Will it be back? I sure hope so because I want to keep the dark calendar meter running – 35 days and counting.
Some man/woman calling him/herself 4th SD Observer started giving me and this blog a rasher o’ crap on a Pam Keller post yesterday; you know, we’re conspiratorialist wackos, yadda, yadda, yadda. This technique is common in blog circles: you try to color your political opponents as paranoid, nutsy, weird, tin foil-hatted, cross-dressing Nazis – whatever. And of course their objective is not only to marginalize you, but to divert attention from your point.
In response I was inspired to do a Pam Keller recap.
And just so my “true colors” are not seen to be in anyway unclear, here they are: Pam Keller is a hypocritical, shallow, self-serving, irresponsible public servant (and employee) whose manifest conflicts of interest make her unable to serve her constituents honestly, and who seems to be incapable of demanding accountability on the part of herself or her underlings.
There! I feel ever so much better! A veritable catharsis.
Now let’s take a peek at some of the Keller record; and I’ll keep it short(er) by just looking at stuff that has been written about her on what “admin” likes to call “our humble blog.”
Here are some items for your consideration:
1. When she ran for office in 2006 Keller promised that Fullerton residents would dictate the direction of development in town. And yet within two years Keller had voted to approve the gargantuan, staff/developer driven Amerige Court and Jefferson Commons monstrosities that involved huge get-rich-quick entitlements for their sponsors and that would stick the rest of us with the environmental impacts. Only the recession intervened.
2. When she ran for office for in 2006 Keller promised not to take money from developers. Instead she solicited developer’s contributions to her Collaborative, revenue that supported her employment. And the developers were proposing the Jefferson Commons and Amerige Court projects. Hypocrisy? Much?
3. In August of 2007, not even in office a year, Keller joined the now infamous Steve Sheldon (Jefferson Commons) $1000 per person drinkies-boat-ride-dinner fundraiser for Sharon Quirk. Also on board were the Pelican/Laing hucksters greasing the axles of their Amerige Court investment. Did Pam pay her way, or was it a gift from an importuning developer? Too easy. No prize for answering correctly.
4. Even though St. Jude’s Medical Center is a member and contributor to the Fullerton Collaborative of which Keller is the Executive director, Keller, as a city councilmember voted in December 2007 to approve their development entitlements for its massive project west of Harbor Boulevard. Conflict? Much?
5. In August and September of 2008 Keller supported keeping the public in the dark about the fact that she and her council colleagues were negotiating a retroactive pension spike for City employees. She publicly castigated Shawn Nelson for disclosing the fact that the topic was being deliberately concealed from the public.
6. In October 2008 Keller spent over $1200 in public funds for bills run up at a fancy hotel while attending a League of Cities conference in Long Beach – about 25 miles from her house.
7. In June 2009 Keller enlisted members of the OCCCO to publicly promote the fraudulent Redevelopment expansion. They sure owed her a favor since her Collaborative had funneled over $25,000 their way in 2007 for “community organizing.”
8. In June/July 2009 Keller voted for the bogus Redevelopment expansion with its evident failure to indicate any blight. The findings were a lie. Of course the expansion area had been redrawn to exclude a property Keller owns so she could vote on it. How’s that for fancy footwork?
9. Also in June 2009 Keller supported the relocation of a McDonald’s franchise about 150 feet to the corner across the street from Fullerton High – to tune of 6 million bucks. The childhood obesity issue was embarrassing since one of the Collaborative’s mission is to fight it, not facilitate it. Keller only backtracked when it became clear that the jig was up. Later that summer she proclaimed herself a “fiscal conservative.”
10. In July Keller proposed a City of Fullerton blog – without any bloggers, of course. In other words a City propaganda vehicle that would disseminate filtered information and necessarily involve city employees in censoring the unpleasantries often associated with participatory democracy on the internet.
11. In August and September 2009 our investigation into the Fullerton Collaborative and its doings discovered that the vast majority of Fullerton Collaborative expenses went to pay for Keller herself; that her hapless fellow boardmembers were woefully ignorant of her both her fund raising sources and her activities; and furthermore, that since she was considered an FSD teacher and public employee, she got to maintain her benefits thereof, but was cut loose from any District supervision to pursue her dream of philanthropy and self-promotion.
12. In October 2009 as a city council person she voted to postpone debt payments to the City from…her employer, the Fullerton School District. Sharing smiles with her boss who was sitting in the front row.
13. In December she voted to approve the fiasco-in-the-making Richman housing project scam – another staff/developer driven monstrosity (see #1, above) that even fails to address Fullerton’s most pressing housing needs (if you happen to be persuaded by such SCAG priorities).
14. In January 2010 it became apparent that for $50,000+ you can’t even hire an Executive Director that will take the time to update her organization’s on-line calendar events. Move along folks, nothing to see here!
15. In February 2010 we learned that even though Keller is a treated as teacher (for her own benefit) not only is she freed from the drudgery of the classroom, but she has apparently failed to account for her time away from FSD on political junkets, etc., as all teachers are required to do. Of course this means the accrual of unused sick/personal day time. It turns out that some real teachers resent it. How odd. Naturally FSD is clueless. Naughty!
Oh, well. That’s enough for now. No doubt more dubious Keller behavior will surface in the coming months, and as it does we will surely share it with you; and just as surely Keller’s Posse of Political Whatevers will make looking the other way into a full time job.
As a salaried teacher, Pam Keller is required to turn in a form to her boss whenever she is absent from work at the Fullerton School District. But unlike every other teacher, Pam has no boss and doesn’t answer to anybody, even the Superintendent.
Since we know that Pam was out for a dozen-or-so days over the last few years attending various civic events relating to her councilperson duties, we decided to ask the school district to produce those absence forms that Pam turned in.
The response from Assistant Superintendent Mark Douglas was nothing but a big pile of mush. He claims that the district looked for the forms, although he never acknowledges that he couldn’t find them. But he didn’t send them to us, so it’s reasonable to assume that Pam never turned them in.
Notice how Douglas tries to pass the buck along to the Fullerton Collaborative, as if a private organization is responsible for enforcing the school district’s rules on it’s own teachers. He never bothers to explain how Pam’s 60% employment is relevant or why Pam’s relationship with the Collaborative would give her a special exemption from the rules.
So now we know that Pam did not use her sick/personal days while she was out. She got paid even though she wasn’t at work and her sick time continues to accrue indefinitely. Teachers have been known to build up an entire year of sick time before they quit, leaving taxpayers on the hook for salary, pension and benefits for days never worked.
Some day, long after the Collaborative’s relationship with the school district is gone, Pam Keller will retire as a teacher. She will cash out all of those unused sick days at the expense of the taxpayer. We end up paying twice for all of her silly junkets, and the celebration of unaccountability continues.
Update: Ten days ago I posted this piece about the Fullerton Collaborative’s empty on-line calendar. I opined that maybe it was the executive director’s job to keep it updated, and archly suggested that maybe there wouldn’t be that much on it anyway. We received the usual irrelevant and hardly coherent comment-blather from Collaborative member Minard Duncan informing us all about the wonderful work Keller does.
Well, the calendar is still empty for all of 2010! Apparently Minard didn’t bother to let Keller know that the on-line public has no immediate information about what the Collaborative is up to; or, if he did, Keller decided that she was too busy to catch us up on what she’s planning for 2010. C’mon, Pam. You can’t be that busy!
The Fullerton Collaborative’s website calendar page declares ever so earnestly:
There are so many ways to get involved in our community. During the next few months there will be many fundraisers and community events to benefit local non-profit organizations and educational institutions.
And yet a perusal of the monthly calendars shows nothing. Blank. A completely clean slate, clean for all of 2010, in fact. Check it out if don’t believe me.
Now maybe I’m sort of funny this way, but I figure if you’ve got an executive director whom you are paying over $50K (for a part-time job) that individual ought to be able to at least take a few moments out of her busy day to fill in some of the blanks on the calendar. I mean, that’s Pam Keller’s job isn’t it?
Of course if Keller actually does get around to filling out the calendar, then fellow collaborators and even the public may find out how little fifty-thou buys you nowadays, executive director-wise.
As this blog noticed last year, Keller is not a Collaborative employee, but a Fullerton School District employee contracted to work for the Collaborative – where her job entails raising money from members and donors to pay the FSD for her dubious services. Sweet gig. No boss, no oversight, not even much paperwork.
Maybe in 2010 she can get around to filling in the Collaborative calendar.
Earlier today a Friend tipped us off to this self-serving video produced by OCCCO (Orange County Congregation Community Organization) touting its alleged accomplishments. The whole thing is really embarrassing. Trying to take credit for Anaheim’s “$100,000,000” housing policy is just laughable.
But when this group of group of lefty do-gooders bragged about their successful petition to the Fullerton City Council for west Fullerton to be included in the fraudulent Redevelopment expansion, some of us in the editorial room got pissed off. Cut to the 7:30 mark of the youtube clip to avoid a lot of uber-mind-numbing drivel.
First, we have already demonstrated the not too coincidental elevation of some woman called Lee Chalker to the Board of Directors of the Fullerton Collaborative with her sudden interest in Redevelopment issues, here; could any reasonable human being believe that Chalker and her OCCCO pals weren’t persuaded by Collaborative Executive Director and City Council woman Keller to go to public meetings and pimp something they knew absolutely nothing about? They got $26,000 bucks a couple of years ago for “community organizing” from Keller so maybe they figured they owed her, quid pro quo.
But to take credit for their stoogery in a fraudulent political act as an accomplishment not only suggests a complete lack of real accomplishment, but it also suggests a moral bankruptcy, too. Either that or a really low level of intelligence.
We’ve burned quite a few pixels explaining how Pam Keller’s is using her non-profit, The Fullerton Collaborative, as a vehicle to peddle influence, fund political activists, and profit Keller herself through excessively convoluted financial relationships.
But some of our loyal Friends still don’t get it.
That’s admittedly understandable, since the entire contraption is remarkably complicated. But to help everyone wrap his or her cerebral cortex around the many conflicts of interest, we present this valuable flow chart to demonstrate where The Fullerton Collaborative’s money comes from and where it goes. Naturally the nexus of the whole tangled web is Pam Keller. And that’s the big problem.
Enjoy following the arrows. After perusing this chart there really is no excuse for not being concerned about the manifest conflicts of interests on the part of our City Council woman Pam Keller.
I just came across this youtube clip from last summer. It is about our congresswoman Loretta Sanchez and her performance at some sort of “prayer vigil” organized last August, ostensibly to supplicate the Good Lord for the provision of universal health care.
As you can see, Loretta’s not real interested in praying, or even in keeping her big bazoo shut, but rather in the worst kind of political self-promotion. But Ms. Motormouth and her relationship with the Almighty is not the main topic here.
Instead I direct your attention to the promoters of this alleged “prayer vigil,” the Orange County Congregational Community Organization, known as OCCCO. Sound vaguely familiar? Last summer some of its members popped up out of the blue at a city council meeting to speak in favor of the proposed Redevelopment expansion. FFFF subsequently discovered that Pam Keller’s “Fullerton Collaborative” had bestowed $26,000 on the OCCCO for “community organizing.” Fullerton Harpoon wrote about this stuff here. The blog has already noted that Collaborative director (and Fullerton City Councilwoman) Pam Keller is a paid employee of the Fullerton School District.
You can see by the video that despite the presence of a somebody who looks likes he’s got a mitre on his head (A bishop?) these folks are really all about politics, too.
Apparently some folks in Fullerton such as Sharon Kennedy see nothing wrong with this happy intertwine of religion and the politics of cash, the laundering of government funds that ultimately find their way into overt political causes, and finally with the obvious attempt by Pam Keller to use the tangled network to help promote fraudulent and misguided “economic development” policy by the City. Actually these people seem to like the web.
I don’t like it, and neither should you. There is an insidious process going on here and it ain’t good.
Like any good American, I am a staunch advocate for “TURNS”. And as Fullerton’s #1 Freedom Fighter, Sharon Kennedy points out; Pam Keller may not get hers as Mayor. Being moved nearly to tears by this development, I went straight to work statistically verifying this horrible state of affairs. Specifically, that women are not as likely to be given their TURN as Mayor as the men! What salacious form of woman-hating is this? So in support of Sharon and Pam, I ran the numbers…
Dating back to Mayor Charles Chapman in 1902, 44% of Fullerton’s Male City Council Members have had their turn as Mayor. And, only 75% of our Female Council Members have had their turn. So, clearly, discrimination is rampa….what? Let me double check these figures:
35 male mayors/80 male council members = 44%.
6 female mayors/ 8 female council members = 75%
Ummm….well, let me check the numbers just since the first female council member Frances Wood (pause to bow head) was elected in 1970:
13 male mayors/17male council members = 77%
6 female mayors/ 8 female council members = 75%
I KNEW IT!!! Discrimination IS rampant in Fullerton!
But wait… dialing the Observer…
“Sharon, CT here. We have a problem. If the Fullerton School District’s Collaborative Director gets elected Mayor that will mean that 88% of Fullerton’s female council members will have been elected as Mayor and only 77% of men…
…what’s that?….NO, that’s only since 1970 when there HAVE been women on the council.
What? Bury it??? Yeah…yeah….that’s what we should do. People will just forget that we ever brought it up. God you’re brilliant Sharon!”