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 Jim Larsen, Ortonville Property Partners, & the $5 Mil Bond

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Lady Hawk
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PostSubject: Jim Larsen, Ortonville Property Partners, & the $5 Mil Bond   Thu Apr 16, 2009 2:18 pm

What ever happened to the $5 Million dollar bond request made by Mr. Jim Larsen to the Ortonville City Council on November 19, 2007. money

http://www.ortonville.net/Minutes/2008_minutes/2007_11_19.htm

Jim Larsen made the request and "City Attorney Craig Ash stated this is an unorthodox request and would test the limits of the definition of a “public purpose” requirement for city expenditures. The City Administrator was directed to consult with a financial consultant and/or bond attorney for guidance regarding this matter. Once information is gathered, a public meeting regarding this request will be scheduled."

On December 3, 2007 City Attorney Craig Ash advised the City to get a $10,000 deposit from Jim Larsen for good faith and the matter was tabled to seek more information from the League of MN Cities and Briggs & Morgan.

http://www.ortonville.net/Minutes/2007_minutes/2007_12_03.htm

A workshop meeting was held on December 17, 2007 in which Dean Dovolis of DJR Architects, Inc. stated that the proposed development plan of James Larsen of Ortonville Property Partners could bring $50,000,000 to the region. Mayor Johnson stated goal is to have no liability to the city. Some council members pointed out that Mr. Larson of Ortonville Property Partners has 16 properties with delinquent taxes in the amount of $27,000.

Mayor Johnson stated the city would re-write the document so the City had no risk. Mayor Johnson also admitted at this meeting that he was Mr. Jim Larsen's "accountant and he has no financial interest in the proposed project. City Administrator Lang offered to look into this matter with City Attorney Ash."

http://www.ortonville.net/Minutes/2007_minutes/2007_12_17_special.htm

An hour later the Ortonville City Council met in regular session and again discussed the matter. Mayor Johnson supported accepting the $5,000 fee (deposit) from Mr. Larsen of Ortonville Property Partners to determine the legality and /or the safety of providing the bond to Ortonville Property Partners. Clerk-Administrator Lang reported an agreement to look into the matter further could be drawn up and the money would go into a separate fund where the expenditures could be tracked. Mayor Johnson asked for a second to his motion. There being no second, the motion died.

http://www.ortonville.net/Minutes/2007_minutes/2007_12_17.htm


The last entry in the Ortonville City Council Meeting Minutes that I could find on this subject is on January 7, 2008 when Mr. Jim Larsens Attorney told Mr. Jim Larsen's Accountant that there is no conflict of interest in the Mayor participating in the disucssion regarding the possible issuance of a letter of credit.

CITY ATTORNEY REPORTS& RECOMMENDATIONS:

3.c. Update: Ortonville Property Partners Letter of Credit-Conflict of Interest Concerns
Attorney Ash stated in his legal findings since Mayor Johnson had no financial interest and did not stand to gain anything by the City issuing a letter of credit to Ortonville Property Partners that there is no conflict of interest in the Mayor participating in the discussion regarding the possible issuance of a letter of credit.

http://www.ortonville.net/Minutes/2008_minutes/2008_01_07.htm

The question is did the motion die or didn't it? Detective

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Our citizens may be deceived for awhile, and have been deceived;
but as long as the presses can be protected,
we may trust to them for light.
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nascargirl
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PostSubject: Vote   Thu Apr 16, 2009 7:00 pm

I remember that discussion and never heard anymore about it in the minutes. I see by the newspaper that he has numerous outstanding mortgages, and it makes one wonder if they had decided to go forward that the city still wouldn't have a liability?

If you happen to find any additional information - inquiring minds would be interested.

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LittleDeb
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PostSubject: Bond Request   Sat Apr 25, 2009 12:53 pm

When I first read about this, I thought, if the city had $5 million to give away, why don't they help the businesses and people here first?
How can it not be a conflict of interest when the mayor is this person's accountant? Maybe I'm thinking wrong, but if the city decides to give this person this money and the mayor is his accountant, wouldn't the accountant have a share of this money because this person would be paying the accountant to manage this money?
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PostSubject: Why did Char Grossman retire?   Wed Apr 29, 2009 4:26 am

It is interesting to note that Mr. Jim Larsen attended the City Council meeting the first time Mr. David Lang was present as the new City Clerk/Administrator.

Is there a timeline we can see? Detective

Monday, December 18, 2007
We have Mayor Blair Johnson, announce that the City Council will go into executive session for the purpose of the City Clerks job review. Upon coming out of that session we have Mayor Blair Johnson, Mr. Jim Larsen's accountant, announce that they need to post an opening of the city Clerk-Administrator position. Minutes - Grossman

Monday March 26, 2007
We have the City Council offer the job to a Mr. Greg LaFond. Who evidantly turned down the offer. Minutes - LaFond

Wednesday April 4, 2007
The position is then offered to a Mr. David Lang. Who accepts the position. Minutes - Lang

Monday, May 7, 2007 Mr. Jim Larsen attends the first meeting that Mr. Lang is present, as the new City Clerk-Administrator, and during the portion of the meeting under Citizens to be Heard, Mr. Jim Larsen distributed a 3 page handout on the benefits of housing revitalization in the Ortonville community. Minutes - Larsen

It is also interesting to note that, in Mr. Lang's first meeting he immediately starts spending money by asking the council to "shift dollar amounts" so that they can buy computer updates and equipment to the tune of $10,000

At this same meeting Mr. Lang also recommends to the City Council to hire Char Grossman parttime. That is very generous of Mr. Lang to "recommend" hiring the woman who's job he took.

Add to this timeline the above posts .

November 19, 2007 Mr. Jim Larsen made a request to the city for a $5 Million Dollar Bond.

December 3, 2007 City Attorney Craig Ash, Mr. Jim Larsen's attorney, asks to get a $10,000 deposit from Mr. Larsen.
Note also that at this meeting the EDA unanimously approved that Mr. David Lang be made Executive Director of the EDA and City Clerk-Administrator David Lang was given a pay raise .

December 17, 2007 Mayor Blair Johnson says goal is to have no liability to the city.
The Ortonville City Council votes in Mr. David Lang as the new EDA Executive Director..

January 7, 2008 Mr. Larsen's attorney told Mr. Larson's accountant that he did not have a conflict of interest.

Mr. David Lang has stated that the most intelligent person he knows in this area is Mr. Jim Larsen. Mr. Lang has stated that when he wants to have an intelligent conversation he enjoys visiting with Mr. Larsen. I wonder if Mr. Blair Johnson or Mr. Craig Ash has ever joined them in an intelligent conversation?

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Our citizens may be deceived for awhile, and have been deceived;
but as long as the presses can be protected,
we may trust to them for light.
- Thomas Jefferson
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