Baldwin Park’s numbers game

Business owner Greg Tuttle is at it again.

He spent the last two Baldwin Park City Council meetings accusing developer Robert Bisno of owning the city $286,526.01 in back payments.

“I guess maybe the council needs a little help on reading statements of financials for the city. Bisno left the city with $286,526.01 (in debt) … Did the city know about this? Oh yes they did, way back in May.”

Tuttle claims he has city documents proving that when Bisno pulled out of a proposed downtown redevelopment project last year, he failed to pay the city more than $200,000 in costs related to the project.

City officials were quick to contend the allegations Wednesday night, stating that Bisno actually owes money to a third-party consultant, not the city.

According to City Attorney Joseph Pannone, when the city signed the agreement with Bisno for the plan, it was clear that if money wasn’t received from Bisno, the city did not have to pay consultants involved in the project’s planning.

“The consultants would get paid only when the city gets paid,” Baldwin Park’s Chief Executive Officer Vijay Singhal said. “They have a claim against Bisno, not against the city.”

Singhal went on to say that, “as of today, we have not paid any taxpayer money or any city money in this project. We actually are holding deposits somewhere in the range of $8,000 or $9,000 to cover ay expenses that may come up.”

  • BPer

    Maybe Lozano should sell the property he owns in Mexico. Does he even report this on his State FPPC forms?

  • Anonymous

    Ok so we see what tuttle says, and we see the city’s response, but where’s the third party independent review? Where’s the “investigative” part of the journalism?

    I’m assuming you could go to city hall and read the docs yourself, and then be able to report which one is full of hot air or if the truth is somewhere in between.

    Tuttle is constantly making allegations, and you just report the allegations as is. You provide rebuttal, sure, but how about some independent unbiased analysis?

    Please go watch all the presidents men, and/or read about the watergate scandal and the washington post’s role to understand how you should be doing your job.

  • anonymous

    Under these type of development agreements, don’t most cities require the developer to place funds into an escrow account to cover these type of expenses should the developer bail?

  • investigation

    I just read the third party agreement and also talked to ESA who is owed the money. The CDC of Baldwin park will be held accountable for the remaining balance if Bisno is bankrupt. The agreement which was the worst written document I have ever seen will not protect the city if it goes to court this according to a highly respected attorney specializing in contracts. The CDC was totally responsible to pay all bills and it was up to the CDC to maintain the good faith deposits. There is proof in May of 08 this was not being done but the CDC allowed the process to continue instead of halting the process til funds were paid. The CDC head with his new pay raise allowed the developer to get deeper into debit along with the city managers approval also another person who got a significant pay raise. The city attorney should be fired along with the city manager and CDC manager for allowing this to ever happen to this city. I don’t think the little money you kept from Bisno is even close to what you will need to defend your stupidity in this contract agreement.

  • Anonymous

    And thank you mr. Tuttle for that self serving public announcement.

    My comment was aimed at ms chatila, who, unlike you, is supposed to be an unbiased 3rd party observer.

  • Investigation

    No problem mr bejarano

  • Anonymous

    Um, my last name is about 2 syllables shorter than that, but nice try.

  • BPer

    tuttle, your contention is if the consultants take this to court they will win according to your “highly respected attorney” on contracts. Is he also “highly respected” in bankruptcy? And where in this contract does it say that if Bisno went Bankrupt that the City is held liable? If what you say is true then why isn’t the City being sued? You’d think by now they would be. IF they had a case. Be careful what your trying to pitch tuttle. You may come out looking stupid again as usual.

  • For Your Info

    I don’t think anywhere that tuttle stated officially Bisno is bankrupt but if you read the agreement the city has with ESA the city pays the bills out of the good faith account the city setup not Bisno. If you knew anything about the way lawsuits work the small contractors will sue ESA for their money then ESA will sue the city. This doesn’t happen overnight and also until this week when ESA listened to the city managers little speech ESA was unaware the city has no intention of paying ESA. If Bisno was the sole responsible business to pay ESA why did ESA want or the city want a three way contract to insure payment? I bet it was ESA also didn’t trust Bisno had any money to do this project.

  • We’ll see

    Investigation(tuttle)said that the agreement was the worst written document he had ever seen. We’ll I too got a chance for a professional expert Attorney to take a good look at it and he had a much different take on it. Seems that the city worded the document in such away that it will be very difficult to get to them. Again, the agreement states that when the city gets paid by Bisno the city pays ESA. The ESA agreed to this by signing the agreement. Bisno goes bankrupt.Now what?

  • Attorney

    This attorney must be the out of work and work out of your house attorney Bejarano. Their is nobody on the city attorneys staff smart enough to pull that off. If Bisno name was solely on the contract that would be a different story. In talking to ESA they did not trust Bisno would pay them which is why the city made the payments not Bisno and it is called security by having the city on the contract Vijay is not that clever.I think Bejarano needs to stick to divorces and little civil cases that don’t take much thought. The ESA company is going after the deep pockets of the city since Bisno won’t and can’t pay the city and the city let Bisno get behind in the good faith payments which was the city’s fault. The city had the option at anyone time to stop til the money was paid but because of the pressure from the council to railroad this project through the city is left with the bill. We need to get these losers out of office in November.

  • Forget it

    It’s easy to see what your up to Mr.Wanna be Mayor of B.P. from Pomona. Work your hardest at discrediting the Council Members of B.P. It won’t do you any good. Cause even if you do, we won’t let you or any of your (face)buddies get on to represent us. Your not educated enough,you’re all too anglo,and we won’t let the business people of this town dictate to us the residents who live here what’s right for us. We will not let history repeat itself. You think that because you and your hitler saluding crowd who are at the council meeting every week that you guys run something? The only thing that you, your pasty face crowd with that turncoat she beast cruz run, is your mouth!

  • Forget get’s it

    The people around the city of B.P. mostly say that at the council meetings it’s always the same. A group of unhappy business people(CARA) are always attacking the city council. And most of them don’t even live in this city! What they want to do is get their own people in the city council so they can do what they want. Well, before there were mostly business owners on the city council and they kept this city low income and depressed. And look at the dump we have because of them. Now we have CARA who wants to do the same because they want to keep their taxes down, their rents down, and wages down by keeping this city down. CARA thinks that the people here are dumb and we’re going to believe that they are looking out for us. CARA is just looking out for themselves and we know. it!