SAVE THE DATE/TIME
Friday, 2/27/09 @ 3:30pm on WSAR 1480am
In the interest of TRUTH, I ask you to tune in on Friday, 2/27/09 @ 3:30pm on WSAR 1480am when I will be a guest of Mike Herren's Talk Show. Some of you know me well and others hardly at all. I want you to know me better. As I consider my political future and as I recognize that my possible candidacy for higher office is perceived by some to be a threat to the status quo, I want to assure you that I am willing and able to move forward and do what I can to change the political climate of our City to allow it to move in a direction that will be better for all who live, work and visit here.
Mike Herren announced on Wednesday that he had "Breaking News" which turned out to be that he "uncovered" "public information" that exposes my "hypocrisy" concerning 64 Durfee Street, The Durfee College of Technology Building, which is in the process of being sold to Peabody Properties for a development that most, if not all, of us opposed. The short of it is that Mike Herren has discovered that I own residential property which houses people and some of these people are "subsidized". I have stated that three (3) of my twenty-seven (27) Downtown (Pine and Purchase Street) apartments [approximately ten percent (10%)] have Section 8 certificates. Mike claims I have many more people with "subsidies". Moreover, Mike claims that because I received CDA loans and grants to reconstruct/rehabilitate/restore two (2) of my houses (286-292 Pine Street and 214-216 Purchase Street) that these loans constitute "subsidized tenancies".
This is the beginning of what will be continuing attacks on my character and integrity to assure I will not be a candidate for higher office. It is an attempt to silence my advocacy for the kind of development that will create a better Downtown and Lower Highlands neighborhood. My properties provide decent and affordable housing for people of varying income levels, integrated into the neighborhood rather than "warehoused" in a single building.
The facts are simple. Since 1979, I have purchased five (5) properties and I have spent a whole lot of money buying and reconstructing these properties to improve the character and integrity of a neighborhood that was on the verge of both physical and social decay. Earlier this decade, I spent approximately one million dollars ($1,000,000) to buy and reconstruct two (2) of my houses, creating nine (9) units, three (3) of which are handicapped-accessible and all of which are de-leaded and asbestos-free. Also, I was required to provide a sprinkler system, a fire-prevention requirement of the building and fire codes for multi-family houses of four (4) or more units (286-292 Pine Street is a six (6) unit building). Approximately six hundred thousand dollars ($600,000) was a CDA low-interest (3 or 4%) loan with a small grant [approx. seventy-five thousand dollars ($75,000)] for creating handicapped-accessible housing and de-leading the units. This money is available to any property owner who can demonstrate that the investment will enhance the neighborhood in which the property is located. The balance, approximately four hundred thousand dollars ($400,000.00), came from other personal sources, mostly equity accounts from my other properties.
Clearly, this million dollar investment is significant for a six-family house and a three-family house; however, I chose to undertake this for several reasons including my desire to "bring back" these houses from the verge of decay and to protect the investment I had made in my other houses that are abutters to and surround these two (2) houses. Assuredly, if I sold these two (2) houses I doubt that I would recoup my purchase price and reconstruction investment at this time. However, I know that I share with other investors of historical properties the desire and the satisfaction of "saving" a piece of history and the hope that someday there will be a return on the investment.
If you want more information, please feel free to question me. If you do listen to the program and are inclined to call (the "talk show" number is 508-673-1480) and your participation is appreciated.
Mike Herren is presenting the effort we put into the 64 Durfee Street issue as a means to attack personally The Fiolas, Alan Amaral, John Almeida, Nick Christ, Dave Raymondo and the integrity of the "power structure" of Fall River. My focus is to develop a new "power structure" that is both democratic and visionary.
Finally, while I understand that some of you feel that the WSAR talk shows should be ignored, I know that all forms of media and other forms of outreach must be used in order to advance support from the public for both causes and candidacies.