Thursday, March 10, 2011

Mosca Backed PUSD Board of Ed Candidate Tom Selinske Forced Into April 19 Run Off

When does an endorsement of a candidate actually hurt the person it was supposed to help? We might very well have just seen one of those very instances. Sometimes it would just be better for a candidate if his benefactor had the good sense to express his support in a far more effective way, by saying nothing.

In the only PUSD Board of Education election race forced into a runoff Tuesday, Mosca backed incumbent candidate Tom Silenski failed to receive 50% of the vote and must now go head to head with Sean Baggett. Sean is a teacher, which means he is someone who has actual real time education experience.

Tom Silenski is a current Board Member whose time of service has included perhaps some of the darkest days the Pasadena Unified School District has ever seen, with even more layoffs announced this week. By sending this contest into overtime have the voters stated here that they are not too keen about rewarding systemic failure?

Also worth considering. Current Sierra Madre Mayor Joe Mosca supports encumbering CRA money for redevelopment projects like the Old Church rather than allowing Governor Brown to use those funds to help allay some of the financial hardships being faced by public schools in this state. Something that calls into question the Mayor's real commitment to public education.

Please be sure to get out and vote in this very important runoff election on April 19.

Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency Full Time Salaries

The Daily Breeze is reporting today that the City Of Los Angeles City Council has voted 12 to 2 to encumber $930 million in CRA funds in order to keep them from going to the state when the State Legislature in Sacramento votes to abolish redevelopment agencies.

A spokesman for Jerry Brown responded this way:

"It's a shame that at a time when school districts are laying off teachers or increasing class size that cities like Los Angeles are trying to keep money behind a wall and not allow it to be used for vital programs."

We saw a similar encumbering process here in Sierra Madre Tuesday night. One of the projects identified for this purpose, turning the Old Church into low income housing, being a particularly notorious example.

But in Los Angeles it isn't just redevelopment projects that absorb so much of the tax payer's dollar, it is also the cost of administering the spending of all that money. Out of the $930 million identified by the Los Angeles City Council this week for encumbering, $25 million of that goes for salaries.

Here is how the Top 10 LA-CRA salaries break down:

1) Chief Executive Officer -- $223,256.00
2) Chief Operating Officer -- $198,504.00
3) Regional Administrator II -- $186,355.20
4) Regional Administrator II -- $186,355.20
5) Regional Administrator II -- $176,640.00
6) Chief Financial Officer -- $171,912.00
7) Deputy Chief of Operations for Housing Policy -- $168,492.00
8) Regional Administrator II -- $167,316.00
9) Deputy Chief of Operations - Administrative Svcs -- $163,980.00
10) Director of Human Resources -- $160,296.00

The list of jobs detailed on this Jan 1, 2011 report I am citing goes on for a full 5 pages. This particular CRA is obviously an immense operation and is as heavily staffed as any corporate home office might be.

Here are some of the other salaries which, by private sector standards, are quite generous.

Administrative Assistant (16 positions) -- $76,548.00
Graphic Designer -- $76,164.00
Administrative Secretary -- $73,111.56
Storekeeper -- $67,632.00
Assistant Maintenance Mechanic -- $64,044.00
Receptionist -- $56,928.00

The City of Los Angeles, by the way, is currently facing the consequences of $1 billion dollars in debt over the next two years. Something it is having a very difficult time dealing with. Is there any wonder why?

The entire LA-CRA salary report can be accessed by clicking here.


  1. Public School TeacherMarch 10, 2011 at 6:35 AM

    There are the numbers folks and it is down to the barbed wire. What more do we need to get everyone out to vote against joe this time. If ever schools were to suffer and society was going to crash, this is the lowest time in history. The red flag is waving. How much stronger of a message do we all need.

    We must write a massage campaign to support Jerry Brown's Education first and CRA last, and keep Sierra Madre free of ALL CRA development monies. Picket CC, newpapers, Sacramento,etc.

    It is obvious education never made any impact on the G4 but we cannot allow this to happen to any future generations.

    Furlough days, schools closing. If you don't like teens hanging out now at Kersting Ct you will like it less when there are less school days and they are hanging more often there and the mall and there is more teen crime. It is going to get real dirty real quick.

    The tattler knows.

  2. Joe pays happy lip service to public education, but when it gets to crunch time he votes BIA redevelopment all the way. He knows where his bread is buttered.

  3. Chief Black KetleMarch 10, 2011 at 6:57 AM

    It's not news to any of us who have had to suffer the regime of Mosca-Buchanan-Moran. Given a chance they will take the school lunches right out of the mouths of the students so as to feed their self aggrandizing, petty and infantile motives. These tax dollars should go straight back into the school system because, let us not forget, that these children will be watering the graves of these pathetic tin pot politicians.

  4. Philosopher's Stone in ReverseMarch 10, 2011 at 7:49 AM

    Am I noticing a pattern here? The LA Community College District mismanages 6 (SIX) Billion, The LA CRA is trying to palm another Billion--a Billion here a Billion there and there you have the 26 Billion dollar deficit in California that is supposed to end life as we know it.

    From Mosca to Jerry Brown, irresponsible, marginal personalities are taking the wealth of the average citizen and turning it into crushing debt.

    Waste, mismanagement, childish "green" ideas--the whole state, including the schools, is starting to look like Ratzo Rizzo's vision of the City of Bell: suckers to exploit.

  5. First of all, when you have a diagnosis of Alzheimer's then the suffered is "forgive everything." Nothing they do is intentional, they have no control over the digression of their otherwise useful life and normal behavior. I do not like the way in which Nancy Walsh was conscripted to run against the candidates that I KNOW would have been far more intelligent and purposeful for the benefit of Sierra Madre but I do not approve of the scurrilous attack and comments of a 'phoney' diagnosis.

  6. Politicians converted to Bio FuelMarch 10, 2011 at 8:03 AM

    I believe that all cities that try to transfer funds this way are shooting themselves in the foot or cloven hoof. I suggust that real criminal investigations will start to recover the fraudulently spent monies, just like Rizzo and Bell they will go way back must certainly to the Doyle and Leung years. Those initial 18 cities audits just showed a teeny tip of a huge
    iceberg of bottom feeding fraudsters, and certainly won't be the last audits. I would imagine the results will be used to train more auditors and investigators. Criminal and civil prosecutions will result in seizures of land, buildings and bank accounts, jail time, for some. Probably all kinds of whistleblowers are in contact with Browns office now. So be it.

  7. Clean house at the PUSD. Start with Silenske.

  8. Public School Teacher at 6:45

    You make the strongest case I've heard yet.
    Thank you for your post.

    PS: Private message to my Tattler friends;
    Old Kentucky wants to thank all my wonderful friends these past few difficult days for my family. You know who you are. Thank You!

  9. You cannot be for education AND keeping the CRA money that would be used for schools in the hands of redevelopers. It is either one or the other.

  10. A Barrel of MonkeysMarch 10, 2011 at 8:24 AM

    Would you tear down your house before you had a plan for rebuilding? Apparently that's what PUSD did on Canon. They couldn't wait for a plan to start spending money, and they certainly couldn't have continued their excellence in education in older buildings.

    January 28, 2011: UPDATE to Sierra Madre School Site / Construction
    To Our Neighbors:
    Sierra Madre Upper Campus
    After updating the Project status with the Architect, I am able to provide the following information:
     Structural drawings have been sent to Sacramento and are still in review with DSA
     Fire Life Safety has been received back with minor comments and will be handled locally as over the
    counter back checks
     Our A&E team continue to refine the final finishes to provide the best scenario for a durable and long
    lasting building
    We continue to track with the team’s goal to be complete with DSA by March. In the interim, we will begin to
    discuss the delivery vehicle for the project. It is still the District’s plan to commence new construction this
    coming summer, 2011.

  11. I think you are going to need to call Mayor Mosca and explain that to him, 8:23. I doubt he understands it.

  12. How to use empty jargon to keep the taxpayers confused.

    "We continue to track with the team’s goal to be complete with DSA by March. In the interim, we will begin to discuss the delivery vehicle for the project."

    I got your delivery vehicle right here.

  13. They think they're bigshots when they spend our money. What if we didn't give them any? They wouldn't be such bigshots then, right?

  14. Do these bureaucrats think they are fooling anyone?

    Yes. They know they are fooling most of us, most of the time.

  15. The blog mod took down the comment to which I referred in my "do not do this" blog earlier so those comments will not make any sense to later readers. You could take down mine, too.

    However, here is what a family member observed at the CC meeting last Tues. It is Joe that makes Nancy look awkward, as much as anything else, when he pops up with his round-robbin approach to calling on others for comments. Unless they ask to speak on the topic at hand, they may not have something to say just for the sake of saying something. When you do not have something to say maybe you are not paying the same kind of attention as you would when you are chopping at the bit to make a point or really add to the discussion.

    I know when I want to say something it is because I have something to say, not like the Mayor who is filling up the air space as if his every word mattered...thank you...perfect.

  16. Thank you Moderator for taking down the Alzheimer's reference made earlier today. I have wrestled with it all morning. It was clearly unkind and malicious. Tattlers are bettern than that.

    And thank you "do not do this" for doing the right thing.

  17. Ok big shot with the tear down before you have the plan question--ever heard of the critical path and how easily it can get mucked up?

    If they are as delayed as you said, it is a crying shame that the kids could have had a full year in the old school site instead of this extra year in the portables with the empty place where the new school buildings will be.

    If there is a mess at hand the last things the kids need it to think that their community is laughing at their school--laughing at them, their parents, their teachers--don't insult children because the adults get it wrong.

  18. Joe's method of enlisting input from his fellow council members is very much like your sweet Kindergarden teacher would do it . . . eeeeveryyybody gets to have their say. Come on Johnney, Nancy, MaryAnn you too, Joshua come on, join in.

    Gag a maggot. This is why these CC meetings are insufferable as well as the incompetence (that is another post).

  19. Not counting the vote by mail, approx. 300 Sierra Madre citizens came out to vote in Tuesday's election. A majority of those voters were Sr. Citizens who vote in every election. Can we see a trend here? It seems a vast majority of Sierra Madrians don't care who represents them in government.

  20. Guess that shows just how much interest the little kiddie's parents have in their education... or just how few Sierra Madre kids go to public schools... or that a sizable number of voters vote by mail...

  21. PUSD Booster: " . . . the kids could have had a full year in the old school site . . . ." Exactly. Officials should think before they speak, think before they act, and not waste the people's money.

    Come on, do you really think the "children" read the Tattler and feel embarrassed. That is a new level of emo.

  22. Mayor shuts down Tattler Blog. Cites Emotional Distress. "The truth hurts, and you are being mean, and I have to make you go away." Film at 11.

  23. How can he shut down the Tattler? It has pretty much survived everything they threw at it in the past.

  24. The trolls are working very hard to get bad comments on here. Just like they did during the election. They can't deal with the issues being raised on this blog, so they're trying to plant crap.

  25. It was a joke. Jeez.

  26. Miss the Cumquat much, 12:38?

  27. LA's CRA with 216 positions, gobbling up $25M just for salaries... and there are more than 400 more agencies in the state.

    It makes you wonder just how much of that $5B in redevelopment money is spent just on supporting staff.

    When you couple the massive monies spent on gov't overhead.. with the rampant misuse of funds... with the dubious mission statement...
    CRA's have got to go.

  28. Jerry Brown will go down as one of the greatest governor's this state has ever had if he kills off the CRA. It will go down as a defining moment in California history.

  29. True confession: I was motivated to vote once I saw Mosca's endorsement. Of course, I was motivated to vote against anyone who associated him or her self with our disgrace of a mayor. That was the impetus. Then I read the candidates statements, perused the mailers (Selinske spent a bunch of buckage on his mailers) and voted for the experienced teacher Baggett. So there ya go Joe.

  30. I've been noticing more troll activity for the last week....

  31. Maybe Tom Silenske will have a media blitz to explain where he stands on the CRA issue.

  32. Trolling is a sign of weakness. It means that you cannot discuss the issues, so you have to tell lies. Of course, you also have to consider the source.

  33. Trolls are an unfortunate fact of blogs. Best to spot them as early as you can and move on.

    Nothing kills a post like no response.

  34. 4th day in a row we have been over 1,000 hits. If this was a business then
    business would be good.

  35. One of the very best remarks made at last Tuesday's city council was from MacGillvray, late in the meeting. Attorney Levin was explaining the dodge game, the spin that will allow cities to continue to use and abuse CRA funds for the oh-so-fluid "blight", and MacGillvray said "So that's the tactic."
    Her observation was meet with sputtering, primarily from Buchanan I think, maybe Mosca, that it was the real truth or the correct thing or some such poppycock, and MacGillvray stuck to her guns and said "Yes, the tactic."
    Nice exposure of the shenanigan approach.

  36. Lying about the reasons for the water rate hike was a tactic, too. Look
    at how that one is working out for the Pinocchio Council.

  37. The Downtown Investment Club members in Sierra Madre were successful in the last election through trickery and very intentional distortion of the truth. Trolling comes quite naturally to them. That's how they work.

  38. ex Mosca campaignerMarch 10, 2011 at 3:17 PM

    Many of the residents in this town know that Mosca will say anything.

    His walk and talk are separated by a chasm.

  39. There is an article up on Patchy's Playhouse about the Mayor Walk. The picture shows about 4 people.

  40. We have city leaders who try to figure out ways to deceive us and the state.

  41. LA and the CRA with top paying patronage positions make it understandable when the LA Times refered to the grinning Mayor Villagarosa as "slobbering all over himself" over the Boys from AEG and the NFL and their Downtown CRA Stadium Project. 25M in salaries what a deal!
    Maybe AEG will send Phillip Anschutz and the NFL Roger Goodell to LA Unified to tuter or is that tooter the kids.

  42. You can tell when Joe is lying. He gets a very serious
    look on his face and he crosses his arms.

  43. At those leadership academies John and Joe attended that's what they teach. Feeding BS to the tax payers.

  44. Thanks for that explanation 11:05. I'm late on the thread today and was puzzled about your first post. Got it, and couldn't agree more. Joe is being a pretend leader when he drags comments from people whether they want to give them or not, and also his silly little incantation with the votes. I noticed he dropped the "And I vote" tag line, but it'll be nice to get back to an adult running the meetings.

  45. Henderson and MillerMarch 10, 2011 at 3:26 PM

    3:18, that must mean it was standing room only and fabulously successful.

  46. Remember that when you look at those salaries, calculate health benefits and retirement benefits that far outstrip the majority of what is now going on in the private sector.

  47. Barrel of monkeys, there was a time when that cart before the horse project was a guarded whisper in PUSD. When the PUSD administrator came before the council to ask for the city to vote for Measure Whatever, and Don Watts was on the council, he questioned the administrator about possible expansion plans for that site. The administrator gave assurances that there were no such plans. Don obviously didn't believe him, and the administrator got into a snit and asked Don, "Why, would you like us to expand there?"
    There were monkeys in that barrel for sure.

  48. We are keenly aware of the perpetuation of fraud under the guise of blight that has taken place here in Sierra Madre.
    But remember Levin's pronouncement: the city has IMMUNITY for its zoning and planning decisions.
    And since it seems that the laws can be contorted any way a lawyer wants to contort them, even the worst offenders might skip out free.
    However. The city does not have immunity for fouling up a Prop 218 process and lying to its residents.

  49. Lest you folks forgot that this blog is not an open forum, it is moderated, views posted upon review and approval by moderator, so it is censored and comments can be approved and left off to support the moderators point of view, which I tend to agree with 95% of the time, this is his forum, he controls everything that is seen and is also by default responsible for every comment posted, cuz he's the when accusations are made that the trolls are active on any given day it is the moderator...editor..censor..that is responsible for and I as the end consumer of this blog do not see everything that is submitted nor will we's his blog he can do with it as he wishes,and I'm sure he does's his right. 50/50 chance this gets posted...I will know if it doesn't and you won't and you will know if it does, proving my point......cheers!!!

  50. 7:24, a troll can slip through. It's not always obvious at first. As time goes on, you can tell by the whirlpool effect the comment has, and the way it derails discussion from the point at hand.
    Plus the Dirts are not above pretending to be one of us and then engaging in slander.
    In fact it's a tried and true method for them.
    I am a great admirer of the moderator's work, but I don't think he's omniscient.

  51. Public School Teacher arrives home 7pmMarch 10, 2011 at 7:51 PM

    12.5 Billion in cuts in education.

    Can any of you even count that high?
    Can you compare that to any other cost?
    Why a football stadium?
    Why anything to build?
    Health costs have gone UP, and furlough will cut salaries, and we have a superior education!

    I tell my students that education comes FIRST. But, how can I be believed when these cuts are real and California is still the worst in the nation, and education is under valued.

    I love my students and I buy most supplies. Do not blame my unions. That is cheap and sleazy.
    Thanks John for listing the LA-CRA breakdown. Where is their contribution? Where is the contribution of the Koch brothers and other millionaires/billionaires?

    Who prepared all of us for the FUTURE? Somewhere a teacher influenced our lives.

    No other profession works with this great number of people and takes their paper work home, and people work home.

    Visit a classroom today and feel the connection.

  52. I make one every pay day....TAXES!!!!