$800 Grand, Sex Extortion, Pit Bull Attacks: No Red Flags Seen at City Hall.

Categories: Schutze

cash_drawer2.jpg
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The old HUD cash drawer: If you don't hurry up and grab some, some other less deserving person will steal it.

Late yesterday, just before finally answering my days-old question about it, the city manager sent a memo to the City Council characterizing $800,000 repaid to U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development as a kind of technical accounting error and no big deal.

Most of it involves money stolen by city employees from a fund intended to help recently released felons with HIV -- about the most helpless, friendless, lost, vulnerable wretches on the face of the Earth. One city employee sentenced to 15 years in prison for it a couple days ago was using the money to set up a love-nest for a woman from whom he was extorting sex. Another one, the person in charge of the program, indicted but not yet tried, was using the money to give an apartment to her relative who was in trouble for setting a pit bull on a person.

The memo from City Manager A.C. Gonzalez is below. You can read it for yourself. I just know too much about how outrageous this really is. For example, another 67 grand the city had to turn back to HUD was money that went to the South Dallas Fair Park Inner City Development Corp. That's the entity run by former City Council member Diane Ragsdale that has been a central player in a saga I have been telling you about for years -- the car wash on MLK in South Dallas that the mayor wants to run out of business so Ragsdale or somebody else can have the property.


So basically you've got the city acting under color of official right to stiff-arm this guy who makes his money by working and doing business. You've got Ragsdale's outfit waiting in the wings, funded with free money from HUD. And even at that the louses can't keep their hands out of the cookie jar long enough to avoid having to give the cookies back.

And then you get this supercilious memo from the city manager saying, between the lines, there's going to be some crap in the Dallas Observer tomorrow about some money we had to give back, but don't sweat it, because the feds are suckers and we can get all the money back from them anyway.

Oh, don't worry that our employee was just sentenced to 15 years for stealing money and extorting sex. That's not a red flag. Don't worry that the person over the whole program has been indicted. Don't worry that we had to fire the whole staff and suspend the whole program. No big deal. HUD's a sucker. We can get them to give the money back after the headlines die down.

Let me remind you why we know one syllable or whisper about any of this. We only know about it because an anonymous commenter here on Unfair Park, pretty obviously a City Hall insider, blew the whistle a couple weeks ago. The commenter, calling him or herself "bigbexardaddy," reported that gendarmes from the HUD Office of the Inspector General are at City Hall delving deep into "all programs" involving HUD money and that "hundreds of thousands [have been] ordered repaid so far."

All of this is happening pursuant to another saga we have talked about here a lot, the "Lockey and MacKenzie" complaint against the city, in which two developers successfully persuaded HUD that Dallas has been misappropriating hundreds of millions of dollars and practicing deliberate racial segregation in violation of federal law. That one hasn't even yet fully hit the fan in terms of a settlement, but bigbexardaddy put us on to an interesting aspect of it; what he was really telling us was that HUD, when it began to looking into Lockey and MacKenzie, stumbled on sleaze and corruption all over the map where the city has been dishing out HUD money.

Gonzalez's memo makes it look as if the city had to pay back HUD $625,814 in the sex extortion and pit-bull attack matter only as sort of a technicality, because, you know, the sex-extorter and his boss, the pit-bull lady, had sort of handled the files, and you never know. Really it was the city that led the investigation some of the time more than HUD. So that all sounds really good, right?

In the Diane Ragsdale People's Ministry of Property Seizure matter, Gonzalez tells the council, "City Staff strongly disagreed with HUD's finding on this item. However, funds were repaid to settle the disagreement and close the matter."

Oh, "city staff" disagreed with HUD about it? Oh, I see. City staff disagreed. Now, did that include the sex extorter? Was he consulted? How about Ms. Pit Bull? No, I guess they were just involved in stealing HUD money from people who get out of prison with HIV. Probably a whole different type of "city staff," a much higher class of folk were involved in deciding HUD was wrong about the Ragsdale money.

Another key point here: bigbexarddaay only told us that hundreds of thousands had been repaid. We only found out it was true and how much it was exactly because City Council member Philip Kingston saw bigbexardaddy's comment and fired off a memo to "city staff" asking about it.

First of all, what does it tell us that the damn City Council has to depend on random comments from bigbexarddaddy to find out this stuff in the first place? Secondly, when "city staff" did respond to Kingston and did tell him it was true they were having to pay back over $800 thousand, they never said why.

So this week I spend all my time asking why. Typically, right before I get my answer, the official cover story goes out in a memo to the council and to The Dallas Morning News, and the News has a piece inside the paper this morning with the official version.

Did I mention the theatrical summer camp for poor kids? Isn't that a great thing to do? Doesn't it tug at your heart strings? Fifty-eight grand paid back on that one. Appears the funds were not spent on a theatrical summer camp for poor kids. You know what: I am literally afraid to ask what they did spend it on. I see myself going down there with a baseball bat and getting chucked in the brig longer than the sex extorter.

Try this on for size as a story in the private sector. You're the CEO. You call down to the COO. "Hey, did we have to pay back the feds $800,000 this year? Oh. But why did we have to give it back? They were using it to extort sex. Well what did our division head do about it? Indicted? Oh. Don't worry about it? You say if we wait long enough we can get all the money back and do it all over again? Oh. Would you please come directly to my office right now and bring all of your personal possessions with you in a box."

But not at City Hall. At City Hall, everything is going according to plan and there is nothing for you to worry your silly heads about. No red flags here, everything coming up roses.

As for HUD and its role, years ago there was a guy the city fired from the city auditor's office, an accountant who was canned basically for being too honest. I talked to him after he left. One thing he said to me has always stuck in my head. He said in public accounting if you put money in a drawer and then announce to everyone that you are never ever going to count that drawer, you must enter those funds into the books as "already stolen." Because that's where it goes. And that seems to be how the HUD money at City Hall works.

Thank you, bigbexardaddy. Thank you, Philip Kingston. It's always better for us to know the truth. I guess.

Council Memo - 14.07.23 - HUD Repayments by Schutze




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114 comments
bellkell
bellkell

Too many government employees worldwide use their positions to line their pockets. Monies don't get distributed correctly and causes extreme poverty. Mexico is a good example. The news is flowing today. http://ow.ly/zBQB0

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

Game Over


Staff wins

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

Any comment on Perry’s statement on Monday that more than 203,000 criminal aliens have been booked at Texas county jails for committing more than 640,000 crimes since 2008, more than 3,000 of the crimes were homicides and nearly 8,000 were sexual assaults?

casiepierce
casiepierce

Speaking of red flags, I sure hope that bigbexardaddy isn't walking his (or her, could be a her) department at 1500 Marilla yelling, "LOOK AT WHAT THAT STUPID SCHUTZE WROTE ABOUT TODAY!?!?"

WaitWhat
WaitWhat

So did Ragsdale have to return the $67,000 to the city, or did we pay it for her?

longballin
longballin

Isnt it interesting that Dallas Morning News only covers this stuff when it seems like they need the story to distance themselves from City Hall? 


You didn't see anything!?!?!?!


And even then when forced to cover, they carry the water for City Hall! 

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

Holy Crap, I just found out Jim Shutze has a tweeter account

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

But Jim "internal controls have been improved to prevent reoccurrence". This type of behavior will not happen again!

Wait, on second thought, does that really mean there are new "controls" that have been implemented to make certain the people responsible won't get caught when they do it next time? No "reoccurrence" of having to come back and clean the story?

Keep up the good work Councilman Kingston and you Jim. And thank you bigbexardaddy for having the balls to talk about this malfeasance.

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

HUD probably didn’t know Dallas is run by Democrats and for the benefit of Democrats until they stuck their nose in it.  Now it’s like policing the border.

Their heart’s just not in it.

Besides.  The only Democrats that are willing to ask questions are the new ones.  The old guard damn sure doesn’t want “Staff” answering any questions about where the money went.  Questions such as, WHO has been pushing “staff” to fill out those pesky forms to get the free money, and WHO got “hired” to hire the illegal aliens to perform the labor for the kind of wages only they would put up with.  Then WHO are the “facilitators” applicants hired to guide the paperwork across the “staff” desks in a timely manner.  FFCs (Faceless Former Staff), of course.  Or maybe a radio station disk jockey (The Crooner) would need to set up an LLC to procure a bunch of un-needed junk and flip it to the facilitators who channel it across the correct staff desk in a language only they speak.  I’m surprised HUD hasn’t unknowingly funded a second language school run for this purpose.

In summation, I would recommend you drop a dime on these fools at the state Attorney General’s office but he’s a Republican and that would be racism, so you’re stuck with HUD, and HUD don’t care.

Mr. Rock, meet Mr. Hard Place.

Am I being too sarcastic?

Nope!

What do you think we have to put up with when, God forbid, we have to go and get a permit or a license to operation in our fair city?

It’s a third world country.

In Mexico they call it La Mordita – The Bite.

Here we call it paying for access.

mcdallas
mcdallas

Two bets:


1) bigbexardaddy will be terminated soon.  I HOPE this doesn't happen, but if insiders know who it is, it's probably guaranteed

2) We learn more sordid details about this as further rocks are turned over


Anyone wanna give me a line on these?

CitzenKim
CitzenKim

You have this wonderful City government, and then Jim claims that everyone who lives in the suburbs are there because they are racists.

maxim2
maxim2

Nice diversionary tactic homey! Tea party has taught you well!

maxim2
maxim2

This needs to be answered!

James080
James080

@longballin 

TOM BENNING @ DMN didn't write a story about a scandal, he issued a press release in the DMN on behalf of AC Gonzalez. He questioned nothing he was told. this is not journalism, it's brown nosing.

maxim2
maxim2

Rudy Rudy Rudy.........

Or, Rudy-tootie-fresh-n-fruity........

lloydbonafidekorea
lloydbonafidekorea

@mavdog


Old A.C. needs to learn to use his spell checker. There is no word reoccurrence.  The correct word is recurrence.

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

@holmantx

Your narrative suggests there is only one party, Democrats, who have been found guilty of corruption.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Congrats on taking a seedy story and twisting it to suit your partisan viewpoint. Dishonesty at its finest.

longballin
longballin

@holmantx


As the other poster stated, this is why HUD needs to be shut down if they aren't going to prosecute misappropriation of their funds.


Everyone issuing funds has the absolute right to dictate the terms of their funds, just ask any investor in America!

longballin
longballin

@CitzenKim I disagree with your point, but still have to give you that one. Everyone should want far away from this City Hall. 

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

@mavdog

Politifact is a Left Wing org.  Read what the Texas Department of Public Safety says, not what a couple of New Yorkers say they said:

http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/administration/crime_records/pages/secureCommStatsTx.htm

This is how bad Politifact is.  They gave Perry a "pants on fire"  It's a red badge of courage coming from those fools.

University of Minnesota political science professor Eric Ostermeier did an analysis of 511 selected PolitiFact stories issued from January 2010 through January 2011. Republican officeholders were considered by Politifact to have made substantially more "false" or "pants on fire" statements than their Democratic counterparts. Of 98 statements PolitiFact judged "false" or "pants on fire" from partisan political figures, 74 came from Republicans (76 percent) compared to 22 from Democrats (22 percent) during the selected period reviewed. Ostermeier concluded "By levying 23 Pants on Fire ratings to Republicans over the past year compared to just 4 to Democrats, it appears the sport of choice is game hunting - and the game is elephants."

Bryan White's PolitiFactBias blog states that the national PolitiFact operation has issued 119 Pants on Fire ratings for Republican or conservative claims, and only 13 for liberal or Democratic claims."

The DPS stats are outrageous and you should be ashamed for playing politics with such horrifying numbers.


wcvemail
wcvemail

@maxim2

You know the answer. We paid it for her. She's still on the eligibility list for future funds, too.

longballin
longballin

@James080 @longballin


And I understand the release was sent to Rudy Bush first, so he must have handed it off, for obvious reasons! Good ole Rudy........

86753099
86753099

How bout "bush bush in the George Bush"

BTW: is Rudy related to George W? It would make sense!

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

@mavdog

It's a one party town.  Even the mayor was recently emboldened to come out.

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

@longballin

That would require effective administration from the top down by the President's agencies.  Leadership.  Holding people accountable.  Putting the right people in as agency heads.  Oversight.  

Do you see any of that across the entire spectrum of the federal government right now?

CitzenKim
CitzenKim

@longballin @CitzenKim I'm exaggerating about Jim, but yes part of my desire to live in Plano is that that my city property taxes are going to competent, non-crook city employees.

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

@holmantx

"Politifact is a left wing org"

It's coming from the Austin American Statesman doofus.

Proving the adage if you can't argue the facts, attack the source...

"Read what the Department of Public Safety says"

Yeah, the DPS information is reviewed in the discussion of how accurate Perry's statement was. They even used the pretty graphic from the DPS data. It' there in all it's glory.

Did you not read it or just not grasp it?

longballin
longballin

@James080 Just thinking about it, AC should give Rudy a 200k salary, per year, to permanently work at City Hall as their media/PR guy. That is the least City Hall owes Rudy for his fine work for them.

primi_timpano
primi_timpano topcommenter

This is a relatively recent occurrence. Was solid Republican not long ago.

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

@mavdog I would throw your question right back at you.  Did you read holman's link at all.  It is the link to the source, not a link to agenda driven media reporting for either side.

From your link, the 'discussion' involved taking the DPS reported homicides of '11 and '12 and extrapolating that over the 6 year period.  You don't have to do that, DPS UCR stats are given from 99 to '12.  So one can get actual numbers from 2008-2012 (7,596) and average and add another ~2000 for 13-14 (to account for a downward trend from year to year) and get about 9,500 homicides from 2008-2014.  This would lower the 'alien homicides' to 32%, instead of the alarmist 46% they claim Perry was indicating.

So, yes, your linked article did what it wanted with the facts.  It did not present them in a straightforward and honest manner.

(taking the last two years of a declining trend to formulate the average for a six-year period, isn't even an honest attempt at being obtuse.  The Statesman and politifact are banking on the laziness or stupidity of their readers and not being back-checked.)

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

@mavdog Politifact just "partnered" with the Austin-American statesman for the very purpose you now try to foist upon us.  To get away from the stench by hiding under the most Left Wing newspaper in the state.

Moron.

So once again, and it's not a trick question Big Shot:

Any comment on Perry’s statement on Monday that more than 203,000 criminal aliens have been booked at Texas county jails for committing more than 640,000 crimes since 2008, more than 3,000 of the crimes were homicides and nearly 8,000 were sexual assaults?

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

@primi_timpano

In a weak mayor form, staff buys off the council with federal money.  Staff runs this town.  The elected side isn't going to correct or even illuminate anything since they politically benefit from it.  Staff is in no mood to change their ways since HUD will go away after staff throws a little money at them.  Then it's back to business as usual.

Everyone's happy.

The only thing everyone fears is the FBI.

casiepierce
casiepierce

@RTGolden1 @CitzenKim @longballin What Golden said. Exactly! I've long held that the "problem" in Dallas corruption isn't that it's corrupt any more than, oh say, any other Top 10 city, it's that our crooks keep getting caught doing the dumbest things, like handing over cash in brown paper bags in a church parking lot.

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

@RTGolden

Only one "discussion" used an averaging of the data from 2011 & 2012 to reach their conclusion.

The questions are numerous on the repeating of this data. For one, the phrase used by DPS is "alien", not differentiating between an illegal resident or a legal resident. Second, the data does not spell out where the person "booked" is accused of a crime, could be Texas or any other state. Third, the "booking" was done in the timeframe of 2008-2012 but the year of the actual alleged crime is not limited to those years.

Perry is using unsupported data as a tool to enrage the public against aliens living in the US, suggesting they are responsible for half of the homicides committed during that 6 year timeframe. It is irresponsible for the Governor to act in this manner.

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

@holmantx

"The most left wing newspaper in the state"

Ah yes, attack the source.

Any comments on the conclusions detailed in the review of Perry's remarks by the Austin American Statesman?

No, you are just going to continue to attack the source? Don't have the capability to understand their rationale? Their reasons that were stated in the review? Why the numbers don't add up? That Perry was "playing politics with such horrifying numbers"?

Doofus.

Brings to mind a favorite Texas adage that seems to fit you, "All hat and no cattle". Or maybe "One taco short of an enchilada plate".

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

@mavdog And those disputing it are identifying what they claim to be errors without doing the legwork to provide accurate numbers. six o' one, half dozen o' the other.  Both sides are full of shit.

holmantx
holmantx topcommenter

@mavdog

Put a little salt and pepper on the DPS report.  Then eat it.  

You're the one who needs interpreters to read a simple report with outrageous numbers that requires no massaging for digestion.

go wash yer face.

86753099
86753099

Holmantx - why aren't you on some right wing Fox News blog with like minded individuals? Instead your obssessively here. Go figure.

mavdog
mavdog topcommenter

@holmantx

Oh, what an insightful and intelligent response Holman! Clearly you read the review....or maybe not?

This claim is unsupported by the presentation he relied on, which indicates that since 2008 in Texas, more than 200,000 arrested immigrants -- foreign nationals living here with or without legal permission -- had among them accumulated 3,070 homicide charges (not convictions) in their lives. Put another way, for this declaration to hold water, one would have to assume illegal immigrants committed nearly half of the state’s homicides since 2008; we found no such data.

Chew on that for awhile...

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@86753099

Diversity of opinion is threatening the collective!

longballin
longballin

@TheRuddSki


Not threatened at all by intelligent opposing opinion, but thats the problem. Yours is just extreme right wing psychobabble which gets very old and has no chance of winning over anyone here. 


BTW: Nice how you and Holmey thread jacked here to go back to Perry and border issues, which is not nearly as interesting as the subject of this article. So either get back to the subject of the article or go elsewhere. 


Theres got to be some extreme right wing tea bagger blog somewhere for your type! 

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

@longballin As I've shown below, the 'extreme right wing' positions taken by holman and rudd on this board are only the natural balance to the extreme left wing positions thrown against them.

It is up to the rational middle to find the truth in all the mud.

TheRuddSki
TheRuddSki topcommenter

@longballin

Shorter version: You are stupid, everyone hates you, get out of here.

Shut up, he explained

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