Posts Tagged ‘apartments’

Jesus Tap-Dancing Christ: More Money Laundering Found in Ed Lee Campaign – Meet CitiApartments’ “Eviction Goon”

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

[UPDATE: Senator Leland Yee is on the case this AM - he's doing a presser involving this latest allegation. (I guess it's too late to call this an October Surprise, and frankly, it's not all that surprising neither. Let's call it a November Expectation. Brace yourself for more.) Oh, and Leland is onto some Chinatown voting sting operation as well.

And there's this: "Statement from Chiu Campaign on Money Laundering Allegations - SAN FRANCISCO (November 2, 2011): Addisu Demissie, spokesman for the David Chiu for Mayor campaign, released the following statement about a San Francisco Chronicle report of potential money laundering by supporters of Mayor Ed Lee:

"This is now the fourth allegation of illegal conduct by Mayor Lee's supporters, and it should be investigated fully by the District Attorney and appropriate authorities,” Demissie said. “With six days to go before Election Day, it will be up to the voters to decide whether this kind of bullying, pay-to-play politics is what they want to see at City Hall for the next 4 years. David is going to spend the last 6 days of this race talking about why he represents a new generation of leadership for San Francisco that will stand tough against the special interests and shake things up at City Hall."

Paid for by David Chiu for Mayor 2011, P.O. Box 641541, San Francisco, CA 94164, FPPC##1337108]

Well, it looks like early-rising City Attorney Dennis Jose Herrera is the first one out of the gates to follow up on today’s piece from San Francisco Chronicle Staff Writers John Coté and Heather Knight.

Testify, DJH:

“Too many of Ed Lee’s supporters act as though they’re above the law — on money laundering, on ballot tampering, and more – and Ed Lee isn’t strong enough to stop it.

Amen.

Earlier this year, Ed Lee was picked unanimously to be an Interim Mayor. He wasn’t picked to be a Reformer. He’ll never be a Reformer.

In Ed Lee’s world, the notorious Willie Brown Administration deserves an A+, Rose Pak is not a cancer on Chinatown, and corner-cutting PG&E (“KABOOM!“) is simply “a great local corporation” and a “great company that gets it.”

Oh well.

Is Ed Lee Breaking Bad? Has the City Family corrupted him? Or has he corrupted the City Family? A little of both?

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All the deets:

“Herrera calls on FPPC to join D.A. in investigating new Ed Lee campaign money laundering charge - CitiApartments’ former eviction goon led reimbursement-for-donation scheme, suggesting political payback for City Attorney’s 2006 tenant-protection lawsuit

SAN FRANCISCO (Nov. 2, 2011) — City Attorney Dennis Herrera this morning called on the state Fair Political Practices Commission to join District Attorney George Gascón in reviewing new allegations reported in today’s San Francisco Chronicle that Ed Lee’s mayoral campaign received donations that appear to have been illegally laundered to skirt San Francisco $500 per donor contribution maximum.[1] Andrew Hawkins, a property services manager whose harrowing tenant intimidation tactics were central to Herrera’s lawsuit five years ago against the Lembi Group landlords’ once high-rolling CitiApartments empire, promised reimbursements to at least sixteen employees in exchange for maximum contributions to Ed Lee’s mayoral campaign at an Oct. 18, 2011 fundraiser, according to the Chronicle.

It is the second major allegation of campaign money laundering to benefit Ed Lee’s campaign. The first, involving GO Lorrie’s airport shuttle, is the subject of separate investigations by Gascón’s office and the FPPC, the state commission responsible to investigate and impose penalties for violations of the California Political Reform Act. Such schemes have been prosecuted as felonies in California for conspiring to evade campaign contribution limits, and for making campaign contributions under false names.

I think San Franciscans have now seen enough,” said City Attorney Dennis Herrera. “Too many of Ed Lee’s supporters act as though they’re above the law — on money laundering, on ballot tampering, and more — and Ed Lee isn’t strong enough to stop it. If this is how they behave before an election, just imagine how they’ll behave after the election, if Ed Lee wins. This scheme is clearly a bid for political payback by CitiApartments henchmen for my litigation to protect tenants five years ago. It is patently illegal, and I call on the FPPC to join the District Attorney in investigating.”

Hawkins is listed in Ed Lee’s campaign disclosures as the owner of Archway Property Services. As the one-time head of CitiApartments’ “tenant relocation program,” the gun-carrying Hawkins is reported to have coerced more than 2,500 tenants out of their rent-controlled units, and once boasted in civil court testimony, “I run people out of their apartments for a living. It’s what I do.

Several recipients of Hawkins’ email invitation to an Oct. 18 event on Russian Hill made contributions to Ed Lee’s campaign on the same date. All contributed the maximum $500.

Herrera sued the CitiApartments residential rental property behemoth in Aug. 2006 for an array of unlawful business and tenant harassment practices, which sought to dispossess long-term residents of their rent-controlled apartments. The coerced vacancies freed the company to make often-unpermitted renovations to units, and then re-rent them to new tenants at dramatically increased market rates. The illegal business model enabled CitiApartments, Skyline Realty and other entities under the sway of real estate family patriarch Frank Lembi to aggressively outbid competitors for residential properties throughout San Francisco for several years — before lawsuits and a sharp economic downturn forced the aspiring empire into bankruptcies, foreclosures and receiverships.

A 2009 San Francisco Magazine feature story on the Lembi real estate empire[2] described Andrew Hawkins as “a burly former nightclub bouncer who headed up CitiApartments’ relocation program.” Hawkins reportedly led teams as large as 14 full-time employees, according to the report, and the company estimated that “Hawkins relocated more than 2,500 tenants.” An earlier exposé in 2006 by the San Francisco Bay Guardian[3] cited civil court testimony in which Hawkins boasted to one tenant’s family member, “I run people out of their apartments for a living. It’s what I do.”

# # #

SOURCES:
[1] Source: “Ed Lee donors face money-laundering allegations” by John Coté and Heather Knight, San Francisco Chronicle, Nov. 2, 2011, http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/11/02/MNKJ1LOMB7.DTL
[2] Source: “War of values” by Danelle Morton, San Francisco Magazine, Nov. 19, 2009, http://www.modernluxury.com/san-francisco/story/war-of-values
[3] Source: “The Scumlords: Part One of a Three-Part Series” by G.W. Schulz, San Francisco Bay Guardian, March 8, 2006, http://www.sfbg.com/40/23/news_skyline.html

What’s Up With Battery Caulfield Road in the Presidio – Have the Feds Closed It Yet? A Premature Road Sign

Thursday, August 11th, 2011

Well here’s what the 15th Avenue Entrance to the Presido looks like these days.

See that? It’s for bikes only now – cars need to use 14th Avenue: 

Click to expand

Which is as expected, fine.

But what’s up with this new sign with the garbage bag over it?

This is right outside of the Presidio Landmark Apartments* on infamous Battery Caulfield Road

I was bold enough to take a peek under the garbage bag. It said something like “Road Closed 110 Feet.”

Oh noes!

I haven’t heard of any conflict yet, so assume that this sign is not currently operational.

Speaking of which, here’s part of the actual Battery Caulfield, AFAIK – it was a Nike Missile base, your know, for the Russian Bear Bombers and whatnot. They stored the Nikes horizontal and then would open the pod bay doors to fire. And you can see the flat top of Mount Sutro in the background – that’s where the fire control base was for the SAMs of the Presidio, back in the day:

Anyway, wazzup with BC Road closing? I gots to know.

*Speaking of which, just look – cars in the parking lot. Personally, I wouldn’t pay four figures a year just to park in the West Bay, but that’s how they do it these days. Anyway, my point is that, unlike last year, there are people actually living in the Presidio Landmark. It took a while, and the looky-lou’s were pissed off that they had to apply for an appointment just to check things out, but the joint probably doesn’t feel like the hotel from The Shining anymore.

Apartment Complex Bike Room Showdown: ParkMerced vs. Presidio Landmark – One is Heaven, One is Hell

Friday, August 5th, 2011

(IMO, poorly-rated ParkMerced (The Mistake By The Lake) should be razed to the ground and replaced with more normal and higher density housing, and that’s pretty much what’s going to happen, sooner or later, so that’s good.)

Don’t get me started about the basements of the high-rise apartments at ParkMerced, and the people living down there (granted, this was a few years back) on mattresses and stealing electricity, and stealing your panties (just panties, thank you, nothing else) from the driers, and stealing bikes, bike parts, etc.*

Storing your bikes in the catacombs of PM, well that’s like crossing the river Styx and entering Bicycle Hell, or at least that’s my impression. As stated, IMO, the buildings of ParkMerced, well, They Should All Be Destroyed.

But what’s this, there’s a dedicated Bike Room at the Presidio Landmark Apartments and here’s what it looks like ?

OMG, it’s Bicycle Heaven!

AHL – click to expand

(Put this setup in the basement of Park Merced and then the Park handtools would be gone in an hour and the expensive tool chest would be on craigslist the next day.)

So this is where your money goes, on stuff like this, when you pay rent at the PLA.

Hurray!

*Uh, Legal, can we get a an approved stamp, you know, on possible defamation issues?

YES, “APPROVED.” LEGAL.

kthx.

Appears as if Trinity Plaza wants Gay People to Move On Up to Eighth and Market

Thursday, June 9th, 2011

Exhibit A:

Click to expand

Exhibit B:

You see that? “Renting with PRIDE – 415 861-3333″

Well it _is_ June that would explain that.

Hey, what about that new building back there? How’s that working out?

 

A 20-Percent Reduction in Asking Prices at the Presidio Landmark Apartment Building? Rentals Now Listed in the Craigslist

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

Here’s what I asked for back in September, when the cheapest unit at the new Presidio Landmark apartments was $2200 (plus $150 parking fee), IIRC:

“No doubt the Presidio Landmark apartments are Mega Turbo Double Awesome, but if they’ve only rented out 2% of the units after two months of trying, then perhaps a reduction in asking prices might be called for? Just asking.”

And here’s what we have in November:

$1800 Pristine Junior One Bedroom (laurel hts / presidio) [Or see below if this link has been taken down by now.]

I’m thinking that’s about a 20% reduction in asking prices, so that seems to be a good start.

I mean if you, unlike me, value “full service amenities you would find at the Four Seasons, the Ritz, or the St. Regis” then this could be the Middle Richmond District / Presidio home for you.

The hot tub in the eastern courtyard:

Click to expand

Or get a full one-bedroom for $1875.

All the deets:


Green living at its finest! Presidio Landmark is a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certified project. The project takes a step forward in environmentally friendly design and operation.

Located in Presidio National Park you have direct access to amazing outdoor spaces, trails, and ocean vistas. Whether your hiking, biking or just laying about, this location has something for all who enjoy nature and serenity. You also have easy access to Marin and Downtown San Francisco as well as the 101 and 280 freeways. Take the PresidiGo, a private shuttle bus that can take you to various locations around the city, way better than MUNI.

In addition to being environmentally friendly and convenient this project features full service amenities you would find at the Four Seasons, the Ritz, or the St. Regis.
~ Concierge
~ Jacuzzi
~ Massage room
~ Fitness room
~ Yoga and Pilates room
~ Bike storage and shop (you can do your own bike maintenance)
~ Guest room availability
~ Courtyard with fire pit

This junior one bedroom features hardwood flooring and carpet. Brand new finishes anoint the entire unit. Radiant environmentally friendly heating is used in lieu of electric heaters. Its Green!

Multiple configurations are available.

Call, email or even text me (please add you name, and what you are texting about) to schedule a tour.
Alex Kaufman (415)699-5900

Location - Wedemeyer at 15th Ave , San Francisco, CA 94129

Rent: $1,800 Utils. Included: None
Bed / Bath: 0/1 Lease Term: 1 Year
Unit Type: Apartment Kitchen Type: Gourmet
Pets: N Stove: Electric
View: Park Flooring: Hardwood & Carpet
Outside Area: Patio Fireplace: No
Window Coverings: Blinds Laundry: In Unit
Parking: Yes Parking Fee: $150
Unit Amenities: Concierge, Spa, Fitness Center, Bike Shop & More!

The Outer Sunset is a ” San Francisco Secret?” Well, Just Look at the Signs – Brightening Up the Central Sunset, Officially

Wednesday, October 13th, 2010

In the spirit of “I’M PULLING FOR SPRINGFIELD” come these signs in the Central Sunset on Irving Street. See?

Banners Welcome Shoppers. To help draw attention to the bustling commercial corridor on Irving Street, the Outer Sunset Merchant and Professional Association has hung colorful banners along major intersections on Irving, between 19th and 25th avenues. The banners, promoting the “San Francisco secret,” say “welcome” in English and Chinese.”

I’ll tell you, 27th Avenue is more outer than 19th, but the whole lot of these streets are in the Middle Sunset, AFAIAC:

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Now, which is the “biggest San Francisco secret” of the “Outer Sunset?” 

Is it the grow houses or the cat houses?

Or maybe it’s all those illegal in-law (or, more correctly, outlaw) housing units…?

Resolved: The Presidio Landmark Apartments Should Lower Rents by 20 Percent. Anyway, Big Green Party Tomorrow

Friday, September 24th, 2010

No doubt the Presidio Landmark apartments are Mega Turbo Double Awesome, but if they’ve only rented out 2% of the units after two months of trying, then perhaps a reduction in asking prices might be called for? Just asking.

Nay, demanding.

You don’t want the Landmark to turn into the Overlook, right?

So many empty hallways…

Anyway, as promised, there’s a big party tomorrow up in that whole Public Health Service District (PHSD) just north of Lake Street. All the deets are below.

(Now, don’t even think about trying to drive your fly hoopty onto the grounds of the PHSD for the big shingdig. Again, deets below.)

“FROM MARINE HOSPITAL TO PRESIDIO’S 1ST GREEN NEIGHBORHOOD – OPEN HOUSE CELEBRATES RE-BIRTH OF PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE DISTRICT

Presidio of San Francisco (September 23, 2010) – The Presidio’s historic Public Health Service District (PHSD),established more than a century ago to provide care to mariners from around the world, has been rehabilitated as a welcoming new gateway to the Presidio. It now features residences, cultural and educational organizations and public trails that link the Presidio’s natural, historic and recreational attractions. The Presidio Trust, along with its development partner Forest City, is celebrating the re-birth of this corner of the park with a “Green” Grand Opening Saturday, September 25 from 11am to 4pm.

Visitors to the open house will be among the first to visit the Presidio’s first green neighborhoodand explore places long hidden from public view.  They will have the opportunity to take self-guided tours of newly rehabilitated buildings and landscapes around the district; explore an EcoVillage showcasing sustainable ideas and products; enjoy local food, art, and live music; and participate in kid-friendly activities courtesy of the Presidio YMCA. 

It goes on and on, see you after the jump

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Presidio Update: Battery Caulfield Road Shutdown Meeting to be Held in Early October

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

Now you have even more time to email snail mail in your comments about the closure of Battery Caulfield Road in the Presidio.

Soon, you might not be welcome to test drive your new Lambo on Battery Caulfield. Oh well:

Click to expand

The latest skivvy:

The Presidio Trust is considering two approaches to limit vehicular use of a portion of Battery Caulfield Road:

 1) limitation of vehicular use during weekday peak AM and PM hours, 7 to 9 am and 5 to 7 pm, as well as on weekends (Alternative 1); or

2) limitation of vehicular use at all times (Alternative 2).

The proposed limitation on vehicular use is intended to reduce cut-through traffic to maintain public health and safety, to protect environmental values, to protect natural resources, and to avoid conflict among visitor uses.

By restricting the use of Battery Caulfield Road, the Trust also intends to reduce the amount of traffic through the 14th and 15th Avenue gates.

The Trust invites comments on both of these proposed limits of public use. Send comments to: John Fa, The Presidio Trust, 34 Graham Street, P.O. Box 29052, San Francisco, CA 94129-0052, or via email to: batterycaulfield@presidiotrust.gov.

Please make sure your comments have your name and contact information. Comments must be received no later than October 15, 2010. All written comments submitted to the Trust will be considered, and this proposed use limit may be modified accordingly. The final decision of the Trust will be published in the Federal Register.

To view a copy of the Federal Register Notice click here.

The Trust will be scheduling a meeting the first week of October. Information on the meeting will be disseminated as soon as details are confirmed.”

Mark Your Calendars: Public Health Service District Green Grand Opening in the Presidio September 25th

Monday, August 30th, 2010

You (but not your car) are invited to the “Green” Grand Opening of the Presidio’s Public Health Service District on Saturday, September 25th, 2010.  This joint will occur in and around the Presidio Landmark, which is just north of Lake and 15th Avenue.

Check it:

An Open House Celebrating the Public Health Service District

Saturday, September 25
11 am to 4 pm

The Public Health Service District – site of the park’s largest historic building – has been revitalized as a “green” neighborhood where people live, work, and enjoy the outdoors. Be among the first to explore and enjoy this historic area long closed to the public.

Learn more about the Public Health Service District.

As it looked just a couple years ago:

Click to expand

See you there!

Questions? (415) 561-5418

  • Tour the historic former hospital (now Presidio Landmark housing), nurses’ quarters, and surgeon’s houses, and learn how they have been sustainably transformed into contemporary homes and workplaces
  • San Francisco food carts and music
  • EcoVillage showcasing sustainable ideas and non-profit organizations
  • Lobos Creek Scenic Overlook and Anza Historic Trail
  • Fun for kids provided by the Presidio Community YMCA
  • Presentations by staff who worked on the projects
  • Tenant open houses
  • Sustainable Prizes, giveaways and more

 Getting to the event:

Downlad a map with driving and transit directions

The Public Health Service District is located in the southern Presidio, inside the 14th and 15th Avenue Gates, just west of Mountain Lake. There is NO EVENT PARKING within the Public Health Service District, but free parking is available on the Main Post. Please read the transportation options below.

1) Drive to the Main Post and Take the Free Event Shuttle to the Open House
Drive to the Presidio’s Main Post and park at the south end of the Main Parade Ground (near Presidio Bowling Center). Parking is free. Special shuttles will pick you up from this point and take you to the events at the Public Health Service District. Free shuttle service runs on a continuous loop every 15 minutes between the Main Post and the Public Health Service District from 10:30 am to 4:30 pm.

2) MUNI
The closest MUNI routes to the event site are the Geary and California lines, and the MUNI 28. After getting off the bus, walk to the Public Health Service District. Enter at either the 14th Avenue or 15th Avenue Gate.

3) Bike
Bicycle to the event and enjoy free bike valet parking. Enter at either the 14th Avenue or 15th Avenue Gate. For a map of bicycle trails at the Presidio Trust, click here.

Tell the Presidio How You Feel About Battery Caulfield Road Shutting Down – Deadline Sept 1.

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

Well you have the entire month of August to snail mail in your opinion about the Presidio Trust shutting down Battery Caulfield Road. Deets below, initial reactions here.

(And hey, speaking of that whole area, there’ll be a tour and update meeting at the new Presidio Landmark apartments starting at 6:30 PM tonight, Monday, August 2nd. Get the deets over at the Richmond District Blog.)

El mappo:

Click to expand.

Basically, you’re going to need to use the tunnel, or 25th Ave, or Washington. The Presidio Trust doesn’t want you driving past the old hospital just to “cut through.” The short version:

“The Presidio Trust is considering two approaches to limit vehicular use of a portion of Battery Caulfield Road: 1) limitation of vehicular use during weekday peak AM and PM hours, 7 to 9 am and 5 to 7 pm, as well as on weekends (Alternative 1); or 2) limitation of vehicular use at all times (Alternative 2). The proposed limitation on vehicular use is intended to reduce cut-through traffic to maintain public health and safety, to protect environmental values, to protect natural resources, and to avoid conflict among visitor uses. By restricting the use of Battery Caulfield Road, the Trust also intends to reduce the amount of traffic through the 14th and 15th Avenue gates.

The Trust invites comments on both of these proposed limits of public use. Send comments to: Planning Department, Presidio Trust, 34 Graham Street, P.O. Box 29052, San Francisco, CA 94129-0052. Comments must be received no later than September 1, 2010. All written comments submitted to the Trust will be considered, and this proposed use limit may be modified accordingly. A subsequent Federal Register notice will provide a response to comments, identify the decision, and give 30-day notice of implementation. We will email this second notice to you as well. The final decision of the Trust will be published in the Federal Register.

The gritty nitty:

(Oh, by the way, don’t be surprised to learn that your license plate might somehow get recorded when you make your cut-through trips through the park. That’s one of the ways they keep track of you.)

So that’s it. The full monty, after the jump.

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