GEOrgia Knew Part Two


Am I the only one who notices these things?

In an AZ Republic article from Thursday, Sept 22, 2011, by Lisa Halverstadt in the Valley & State section, Lisa reports that “former Arizona lawmaker John Kaites and Chicago sports magnate Jerry Reinsdorf are again looking to purchase the Phoenix Coyotes”.

John Kaites?  He’s the guy who runs GEO’s lobbying firm Public Policy Partners.  He’s also the same guy who was trying to contact Georgia around June 20 to tell her he wanted to find out for his client, GEO, if Goodyear was, “interested” in the prison.  In fact Romina wrote in this email to John Fischbach GEOrgia knew smiley face email  that Romina had already spoken to Georgia about the Kaites phone call and told Georgia why Kaites was calling.

Lisa also reported in the same article that, “Tony Tavares is also part of the (Reinsdorf) group…according to David Leibowitz, the group’s spokesman”.

David Leibowitz?  When I called GEO a few weeks ago to prepare my posts on the prison, nobody from GEO ever called me back.  Instead, David Leibowitz of Leibowitz Solo called me back instead.  He basically said to me, who the f__ are you? Send me info on who you are and then I’ll decide if I’ll talk to you for GEO.  He never called me back.

In a July 27 email from Kristen Boilini (you remember Kristen, she’s the lobbyist who GY invited to Georgia’s public meeting to speak for GEO) to GY’s Romina Khananisho, (here is the email PIO to PIO email0001) Kristen tells Romina that Kristen’s associate Dianne (McCallister, Government Relations Specialist at Kaites’ PPP lobbying firm) wants to set a meeting with Goodyear’s Nora Fascinelli in order to prepare Nora for media calls once the prison expansion hearings schedule gets out and she wants to bring along none other than…. David Liebowitz, the same David Liebowitz who is Kaites’ spokesman and partner in the Coyotes with Reinsdorf.

Kristen goes on to tell Romina in the same email  PIO to PIO email0001 that David Liebowitz, “speaks PIO”.  I think that means that Kristen is telling Romina that David knows how to twist words around for governments and politicians like other Public Information Officers (PIO) like GY’s Nora Fascinelli so that an unwitting public is handled properly and does not make any mischief for those same politicians.

So let’s see if I have this straight. John Kaites;

  1. a former Arizona state legislator, and now member of a big time Phoenix law firm and who runs PPP lobbying firm who represents GEO
  2. who, according to the Phoenix Business Journal (PBJ) is Jerry Reinsdorf’s “right hand man”
  3. and who also according to PBJ was introduced to Reinsdorf by none other than John McCain,
    (here you go, I’m not making this stuff up; http://www.rhkl-law.com/News%20ArticlesJPK.html )
  4.  calls Georgia back in June to find out if GY is interested in the prison.

Now Georgia wants us all to believe that;

  1. she never spoke to high roller Kaites
  2. Romina did not tell her exactly why high roller Kaites was calling
  3. Georgia has no idea what Kaites’ lobbying firm Public Policy Partners does or what they were calling GY staffer Romina about
  4. and according to Georgia’s recent, gap ridden explanation to constituents, nothing important happened regarding the prison from March 28 (when G was sworn in) until July 11 when council went on break.

Oh puleeze.

But let’s take it one more step.  Georgia and the rest of GY city council want us to believe that Georgia never mentioned any of this to any of them?  That she failed to mention to anyone that Kaites, a big time Arizona lawyer, a former state representative, a Reinsdorf and McCain confidante, had called to gauge GY’s interest in the prison expansion and, oh by the way, it could be worth nearly $14 mil in new tax revenue to GY?

What would you think if you were on city council and Georgia and Fischbach kept that kind of information to themselves about high rollers like Kaites calling?  I think I’d be pretty well miffed.

And I’d be really miffed when the entire scenario is blown by some one-man blogger shop doing an FOIA request and embarassing them all.  If that was the case wouldn’t you expect at least one of the GY city council members to publicly tell constituents that the blame is on Georgia for not telling them?

Have you heard of any GY council members saying that?

Well if they’re not saying that to constituents now then it is for only one of two reasons that I can think of.  Either;

  1. all of GY city council was well aware of the whole thing and Georgia and/or Fischbach did tell them all about Kaites or,
  2. they are such a tightly knit, covering-each-others’-butts group that they just keep each others’ secrets pretty well.

Pretty scary for you Mr. and Mrs. Taxpayer, eh?

And finally, when exactly do you think GY found out from Westcor that Westcor was going to delay the mall again?  Wally just revealed it to us this week but I’ll bet Fischbach and council might have known for at least a few months.  Can you imagine the temptation of $14 million in new taxes from GEO right when you’ve just found out Westcor is going to delay again? And can you imagine the city angst when they knew that SOB howardsgoodyearblog would be gloating all over the place when the mall was delayed again because he had correctly called the GY-Westcor announcement of imminent groundbreaking which just happened to be published a few weeks before the election in 2011 a political stunt?

C’mon Georgia and council, which is it?  Fill in the big gaps in Georgia’s latest email explanation to constituents and confirm or deny Wally’s recent protestations about howardsgoodyearblog not believing her story about her lunch meeting in August with Romina, Sheri, and Georgia.  Why are you guys all covering for each other?  If Georgia didn’t tell anyone, why aren’t any of you offended by that because she hung all of you out to dry in public by not telling anyone about what was going on. Why won’t any of you call her on it?

There is an election coming sooner or later in all your futures, you know.

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13 Responses

  1. Howard, Outstanding public service and investigative work! We’re paying close attention but you are connecting even more dots.

  2. Any word on when the decision is to be made regarding the prison?

  3. Do we have to wait for yet, another election? Really, Politically Motivated? Review comments of Mayor Lord’s Video Clip 9/12/2011 after a resident of GY comments on the prison fiasco.

    How out of touch is GY City Council? That the only reason that anyone would take 3 minutes in the Firing Line of City Council on a Monday evening on their own time and expense is all about Political Motivation? Really? What is the motivation, last I checked there is no election scheduled for several years from now. So what is the motivation?

    What does it take to enact a recall of council? Can we the citizens of Goodyear continue with 2-4 more years of this, the last 3 have not been all that stellar, and all of the chickens (or cows, yes cows made the council agenda on the 12th, think PRIORITIES people) are coming home to roost.

    What do you think?

  4. Maybe Fischbach and council can negotiate with Chicago sports magnate Jerry Reinsdorf through the trail of people you listed above, along with GEO through Leibowitz of course to fix….

    The mall issue, the prision issue, the ballpark issue, why settle for only $14M when we have over $300M in opportunities to take care of.

    Think big you could have a trifecta

  5. I like you, your style, your research and where the heck were you when I was digging up the goodies on Goodyear? Keep pushin’… hopefully you’ll get more attention from the voters before the city sinks into bankruptcy court. And yes, I’ll bet with you on the fact that they probably knew about the mall BEFORE the prison expansion proposal… what a great revenue source to save our butts is what they were ALL thinking.

  6. Great investigative blog. Let me take a minute to approach the subject from a different perspective. Though I will soon respond to your and Gary’s earlier blog on the treatment he received from the council during the council meeting a couple weeks ago, I think you may have uncovered a very important side issue with potentially disconcerting results for Goodyear.
    John Kaites and I crossed paths several times in past most notably as opponents seeking funds from the AZ Sports and Tourism Authority (AZSTA). John is always well-groomed, smart, great conversationalist, professional. In brief, John is a sharp guy. Also shrewd and totally committed to the wishes and objectives of his clients, most notably Jerry Reinsdorf. Jerry brought his White Sox and the Dodgers to Glendale. At the same time, we brought the Cleveland Indians (later the Cincinnati Reds as well) to Goodyear. The problem was both cities were simultaneously seeking funding from the AZSTA. It was believed at the time that STA could only support one baseball complex. It got down and dirty as the two cities’ leadership went head to head. John and Jerry carried the load for Glendale. Their political clout far exceeded ours. It reminded me of David vs. Goliath. John and Jerry were quite outspoken in their denunciation of Goodyear and we carried on a very adverse relationship for several months. In the end, both succeeded. We got what we needed and wanted, they got what they needed, but probably less than they wanted. This is not the time to discuss the positives and negatives of baseball in Goodyear (though we need to do such at a later time), but it is the time to suggest that our Goodyear citizens need to be on their toes. Kaites and Reinsdorf are not small players. They will make mincemeat out of amateurs. Be aware of two areas of concern. One, Howard’sgoodyearblog is way ahead and out front on the prison issue and John’s involvement. You got that one. Secondly, however is Westgate. Reinsdorf is heavily invested in Westgate and may soon spend millions more. It is imperative for Reinsdorf to save Westgate. A couple years ago, I became convinced that Goodyear’s future was inextricably tied to Westgate. We had to be prepared to compete with Glendale’s Westgate or we would be a distant second fiddle forever. In the last couple years. both cities have floundered, Glendale through external challenges, Goodyear through internal challenges. Be assured the resurgence of Reinsdorf SHOULD BE cause for concern. He and Kaites are not to be taken for granted. They will do whatever is necessary to raise Glendale’s Westgate out of the ashes. Are we able to do everything necessary to compete? Not with this group.

  7. Alert! You have to get your Phoenix friends to vote for Stanton. Gullett is tied to CCA/private prison corporations.

    AZ Fact Check – Wes Gullett – false
    http://www.azcentral.com/news/election/azelections/azfactcheck/fact-summary.php?candidate_id=192

  8. CCA/Florence: High-profile death “Pitchman’s death in Florence cell stuns foes, friends”
    http://www.azcentral.com/community/phoenix/articles/2011/10/02/20111002phoenix-lapre-dies-prison.html

  9. CNBC PRESENTS “BILLIONS BEHIND BARS: INSIDE AMERICA’S PRISON INDUSTRY” – CNBC
    http://www.cnbc.com/id/44706333/

    “CNBC profiles the town of Hardin, Montana, which accepted an appealing sales pitch to build a private prison that was supposed to bring jobs and much-needed revenue. Completed in 2007, Two Rivers Detention Center sits fully stocked but has never housed a single prisoner, leaving the desperate town of Hardin even worse off. Meanwhile, the prison developer and its hand-picked construction company were paid nearly 20 million dollars for their work.”

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