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Private Developer Deception cancels Broadcast by KPOO Radio

by Scott Madison/Letter from CAC (The Redevelopment Agency)
A Private Developers deception cancels the Broadcast of a scheduled Community Benefits Workshop by KPOO 89.5 FM San Francisco Radio Station. This was a Public Noticed Meeting by the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency
This letter was written to Roy Willis and Larry Florin of Lennar Communities by Scott Madison, chairman of the Mayor’s Hunters Point Shipyard Citizens Advisory Committee on Oct. 4. It is printed here exactly as it was written.

Dear Sirs:

A matter arose at the September 29 CAC Executive Committee meeting that we believe requires an explanation. As we understand it, an employee of your contractor, Singer Associates, acting on instructions from Lennar/BVHP, caused radio station KPOO to cancel its scheduled broadcast of the September 18 Community Benefits Workshop.

The circumstances described below were confirmed for the Executive Committee by the Agency staff member involved in the matter, by the supervisor of the Singer employee who made the telephone calls to KPOO, and by a CAC member’s recorded interview with the KPOO station manager who received the calls from Singer and who spoke with Agency staff. I also personally spoke with the Agency staff member and the KPOO station manager to confirm details.

According to those individuals, the Singer employee telephoned KPOO late on the afternoon of 9/17 and told the station manager that the 9/18 meeting had been canceled. The station manager, having cleared a six-hour block of programming to broadcast the meeting, was distressed by the short notice of the cancellation and called the Agency staffer. In that conversation, the Agency staffer learned that the Singer employee had called KPOO to say that the meeting was canceled. The Agency staffer told KPOO that the meeting was not canceled, and immediately contacted Singer Associates to follow up on the matter. The Agency staffer spoke with the Singer employee who had made the call to KPOO, who denied telling KPOO that the meeting was canceled. The employee was advised to call KPOO to correct the mistake, and after some discussion, the Agency staffer believed that the situation was resolved and that the meeting would be broadcast as planned. Instead, when the Singer employee called KPOO once again, the station manager was told that the meeting would take place, but the broadcast was canceled.

This incident has a distinctly foul odor about it, and is as puzzling as it is outrageous. We urge you in the strongest possible terms to come before the CAC at its October 18 meeting to address, at minimum, the following specific questions:

l The supervisor of the Singer employee who made the calls to KPOO represented that the directive originated with Lennar/BVHP. Who in the Lennar/BVHP organization issued those instructions?

l KPOO broadcasts of CAC and other Redevelopment Agency meetings are arranged and paid for by the Agency. On what presumed authority did Lennar/BVHP rely when ordering Singer Associates to cancel the broadcast?

l What is the explanation for the Singer employee’s blatant disregard of the Agency staff member’s advice to inform KPOO that the meeting was not canceled and that the broadcast should go forward as planned?

l What purpose was served by Lennar/BVHP canceling the broadcast of the workshop?

l What steps will be taken by Lennar/BVHP to insure that there will be no future interference in the public process?

You may expect that CAC members and the public will have additional questions and comments regarding the incident. Our organization makes every effort to conduct its business in an open manner that is accessible to the public. The unwarranted assumption of authority on the part of Lennar/BVHP, the apparently intentional deception on the part of Singer Associates, and the denial of the public’s right to be a party to our proceedings casts a pall upon our process and your relationship with our committee and the community. We look forward to exploring this matter with you October 18.

Scott Madison, Chairman, Mayor’s Hunters Point Shipyard Citizens Advisory Committee

Copies of this letter were sent to Supervisor Sophie Maxwell, Redevelopment Agency Executive Director Marcia Rosen and Deputy City Attorneys Michael Cohen and Venessa Henlon.

Members of the Hunters Point Shipyard CAC are Scott Madison, chair, Dorris Vincent, vice chair, Diana Oertel, secretary, Saul Bloom, Sy-Allen Browning, Maurice Campbell, Tony Dominski, Kenneth Green, Karlene (Nita) Hines, Linda Hope, Rev. Calvin Jones, Ron Jones, Robert Legallet, Marcia LeWinter, Shirley Moore, Frank O’Neill, Alma Robinson, Willa Sims (Emeritus) and Derek Toliver. Call the CAC at (415) 822-4622.
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