Monday, March 15, 2010

Place Your Bets: Did Parks Commissioner, Pandora Nash-Karner, Suffer a Memory Blackout, OR, is Supervisor, Bruce Gibson, Lying to Me?

TO: Pandora Nash-Karner, SLO County Parks Commissioner, 2nd District
DATE: 3/15/10

Dear Commissioner Nash-Karner,

The reason I'm writing you today, is because I was hoping that you could help settle a bet between me, and SLO County Supervisor, Bruce Gibson. (Well, technically, it's not really a "bet," but, I thought "settling a bet" sounded cool, and since I'll be publishing this e-mail on my blog, and because the subject of this e-mail is kinda-sorta "bet-like," we'll just go with that metaphor... for now.)

And to make this story even juicier, ONLY you can settle this bet. Think about that. Out of the 6-7 billion people on this planet, only ONE person can settle this bet. You.

So, here's the deal:

On the recording of the 1/28/10 Parks Commission meeting (that I obtained a copy of through a public records request), I can hear Parks Department staff tell your board that Supervisor Gibson recently requested that Parks staff withdraw an application for some $5 million in Proposition 84 funding for a park project that you are proposing at the Tri-W site, in Los Osos.

Also on the recording, you appear to be very surprised to hear that information. You say things like, "I had no idea," and, "What were the reasons Bruce gave (for withdrawing the application)," and "I didn't realize we had sent this (request)."

Furthermore, judging from your reaction to the news that the Prop 84 funding was being yanked, that project -- the Tri-W park project -- seems EXTREMELY important to you.

Now, I've since contacted Supervisor Gibson, asking him why he didn't notify you -- his own appointment to the Parks Commission -- about his request to withdraw the application for the Prop 84 funding for your Tri-W park project, BEFORE that 1/28/10 meeting.

Here's where it gets weird(er):

He's told me that he actually DID make you aware of his request before that meeting. He, and SLO County Parks Director, Curtis Black (who answered my questions to Supervisor Gibson on Gibson's "behalf"), indicate that, perhaps, due to your workload, you simply don't remember him informing you on the Prop 84/Tri-W subject.

In a recent e-mail to me, Curtis Black writes, "Supervisor Gibson shared the Tri-W and Prop 84 information with Commissioner Nash-Karner prior to the 1/28/2010 PRC meeting," and, "I do not know why she did not recall the information that evening but it is understandable to me considering the demands that are placed on her time."

Here's where you come in, Commissioner Nash-Karner. Here's where you -- and ONLY you -- can settle our little "bet."

Who's right?

Is Supervisor Gibson right, in that he made you aware of that information BEFORE the 1/28/10 meeting, and you then suffered a complete memory blackout at that meeting?

OR...

Am I right, in that, based on the fact that you said things like, "What were the reasons Bruce gave (for withdrawing the application)," and, "I had no idea," at that meeting, that he DIDN'T make you aware of the Tri-W/Prop 84 information before the meeting, and, therefore, he's now lying to me when he says that he did?

So, who's right?

Did you suffer a complete memory blackout on a subject that is very, very important to you, OR, is Supervisor Gibson lying to me?

Which one?

Finally, one more quick question, please...

Los Osos CSD president, Marshall Ochylski, recently made it official that he will be challenging Supervisor Gibson for 2nd District Supervisor this election year. If memory serves, you, as a former LOCSD Director yourself, supported Mr. Ochylski in 2008 as a candidate for the LOCSD Board of Directors. And, as I've shown numerous times on my blog, you also publicly endorsed, and financially supported, Bruce Gibson when he was running for Supervisor in 2006.

Here's my question: Will you also be publicly endorsing, and financially supporting, Supervisor Gibson this election year?

As always, much thanks,
Ron

P.S. I noticed that the Parks Department's slogan is "delivering excellence to every customer." That reminds me... I was told that there's an architectural drawing of the proposed Tri-W park. Please consider this e-mail a Public Records Act request for a copy of that drawing. Thanks again.

- - -

IF she responds, I'll post it.

###

[11 weeks down... 41 to go.]

2 Comments:

  • [Note: As long as I'm at it, I just came across the agenda for the Supes meeting tomorrow, and HAD to send this e-mail, and I wanted to post it, too, but not on top of the excellent one I just posted... so, I'll just post it here in the comments section.]

    Dear County Supervisors, and Counsel,

    I know, I know... I'M the bad guy for bringing things like this up, but, this is just outrageous.

    On your 3/16/10 agenda, Item A-4 involves SLO County government, the SLO Botanical Garden, and a "landscaping renovation project," and as I have repeatedly shown -- in both e-mails to ALL Supervisors, and in multiple blog posts -- over the past couple of months:

    - - -
    Supervisor Bruce Gibson's appointment to the SLO County Parks Commission, Pandora Nash-Karner, also sits on the Board of Directors for the San Luis Obispo Botanical Garden -- a facility that leases County-owned land, is discussed at Parks Commission meetings, and is also planning a "$20 million" expansion, and, according to their executive director, the one proposal they've received to design the project is from the SWA Group, where Nash-Karner's husband, Gary Karner, is a "Managing Principal and Senior Project Manager for 27 years and is currently retained by SWA," according to his bio.
    - - -

    Let me guess, SLO County Parks Commissioner, and SLO Botanical Garden Director, Pandora Nash-Karner -- whose husband is "currently retained" by a landscaping firm -- was instrumental in the development of the "landscaping renovation project," discussed in A-4, where there's no mention whatsoever of Nash-Karner's Parks Commission/SLO Botanical Garden connection.

    At the end of Item A-4, it reads, "Approved as to Form and Legal Effect. Warren. R. Jensen."

    Really? Are you sure about that, Warren? Are you sure there's no Political Reform Act violations there?

    Because, I gotta tell ya, I WILL be adding A-4 to my existing complaint that I've filed with the FPPC involving this:

    - - -
    Supervisor Bruce Gibson's appointment to the SLO County Parks Commission, Pandora Nash-Karner, also sits on the Board of Directors for the San Luis Obispo Botanical Garden -- a facility that leases County-owned land, is discussed at Parks Commission meetings, and is also planning a "$20 million" expansion, and, according to their executive director, the one proposal they've received to design the project is from the SWA Group, where Nash-Karner's husband, Gary Karner, is a "Managing Principal and Senior Project Manager for 27 years and is currently retained by SWA," according to his bio.
    - - -

    In full disclosure, because, I'm, like, a really, really nice guy: If I didn't find Nash-Karner's story so absolutely fascinating, I'd be demanding that she be removed from office, immediately. However, I've set some journalism goals for myself this year, and her continued involvement with local government is CRUCIAL to me achieving those goals, so, I'm NOT going to demand that she be removed from office, for the sake of my story. Her in office makes my story excellent.

    Thanks, AGAIN, for your time,
    Ron

    By Blogger Ron, at 12:43 PM, March 15, 2010  

  • By Blogger any, at 5:12 AM, March 17, 2010  

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