“Pay for Play” was lead by Cedrick Thomas.

Chaz StevensPolitics

1037-460-Bribe

We obtained this complaint filed with the Palm Beach County Office of Inspector General.

[cleeng_content id="846480519" description="Why stop now? It's just getting interesting!" price="0.99" referral="0.10"]TO: PBCO INSPECTOR GENERAL
DATE:  FEBRUARY 1, 2012

SUBJECT: City of Riviera Beach Award to WM $30M contract in response to RFP 246-09 violates the City’s Procurement Code 2412, and RFP 246-09 advertised for solid waste and recycling.

Dear PBCO Inspector General Sheryl Steckler,

The City of Riviera Beach Attorney Pamala Ryan on March 28, 2011 in an Internal MEMO, warns the elected body of the criminal and un-ethical dangers of Waste Management’s kick-backs; which were disguised as Community Benefits; masquerading as a slush fund for the Council individual discretionary use, in exchange for the $30 M contract executed February 2, 2011.

The legal and ethical Problems: WM did not offer any Community Benefits in its sealed response to RFP 246-09. The kick- backs violated F.S. 287.012 (22) 2006. The Community Benefits were negotiated in the City Council meeting between Council Cedrick Thomas and WM Butch Carter on February 2, 2011.

Council Thomas was not authorized by any City Procurement Resolution to negotiate Community Benefits on behalf of the City’s taxpayers or elected officials. The only persons authorized to negotiate for RFP 246-09 was the City’s Purchasing Director, Attorney, City Manager, Finance Director, Assistant City Managers, and Public Works Director.

The negotiations violates RFP F.S. 287.012 (22) (2006), because Florida law does not permit a contractor to revise its proposal after the initial submission. It is in this manner that an RFP under Florida law is very different from an RFP under federal law.

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WM in the sealed response to RFP 246-09 did not offer Community Benefits in  March 2010. The violation that occurred on February 2, 2011 of F.S. 287.012 (22) 2006 is forever memorialized on DVD and in the minutes.

Florida law allows government to use an RFP when it first determines in writing that it is not practicable for the agency to specifically define the scope of work for the contractual service is required, and when the agency is requesting that a responsible contractor propose contractual services to meet the specifications of the solicitation document. F.S.287.012 (22) (2006).

The RFP must include the criteria, but need not be limited to price to be used in determining the acceptability of proposals, and the government must indicate the relative importance of price and other evaluation criteria. F. S. 287.057(2) (a) (2006).

The government must award the contract to the responsible and responsive vendor, whose proposal is determined in writing to be the most advantageous, taking into consideration the price and the other criteria set forth in the request for proposals.

On May 2010 the City determined that Waste Pro USA sealed response to RFP 246-09 was the best value overall to provide Waste Collection for the 10,000 homes of primarily low income and minority residents.

The contract file shall contain documentation supporting the basis on which the award is made F. S. 287.057(2) (b) (2006). The City’s file only contains information as to why Waste Pro met the overall criteria. There is no documentation supporting WM, therefore the City has violated the Statute requirements.

(b) The agency shall evaluate and rank responsive replies against all evaluation criteria set forth in the invitation to negotiate and shall select, based on the ranking, one or more vendors with which to commence negotiations. After negotiations are conducted, the agency shall award the contract to the responsible and responsive vendor that the agency determines will provide the best value to the state. F. S. 287.057(2) (b) (2006). Waste Pro was determined to meet the Statute requirements. The City failed to negotiate; therefore they violated the Statute requirements.

The contract file must contain a short plain statement, which explains the basis for vendor selection and that sets forth the vendor’s deliverables and price, pursuant to the contract; with a written explanation of how these deliverables and price provide the best value to the governmental agency. F. S. 287.057(2) (b) (2006).

The City file only contains short plain statements that supports why Waste Pro met the Statute requirements. There is no documentation supporting WM, therefore the City has violated the Statute requirements for F.S. 287.

On February 2, 2011 the execution of the contract with WM violated F. S. 285. 057 (2) (b) 2006, because in May 2010 the City’s evaluation committee led by City Manager Ruth Jones, Purchasing Director Ben Guy, Former Finance Director Jeffery Williams, Former Public Works Director Vincent Akhimie, Assistant Public Works Brynt Johnson, Director Former Assistant City Manager Gloria Shuttlesworth, and Former Assistant City Manager Paul White; determined that the responsible and responsive vendor, taking into consideration  price and other requirements was Waste Pro USA ranked first; and not WM ranked last.

The City of Riviera Beach Council is defined in F.S. 287.012, which requires the elected body to adhere to the Legislative Intent of Procurement F.S. 287.001:

The Legislature recognizes that fair and open competition is a basic tenet of public procurement; that such competition reduces the appearance and opportunity for favoritism, and inspires public confidence that contracts are awarded equitably and economically; and that there is documentation of the acts taken, and effective monitoring mechanisms are important means of curbing any improprieties in establishing public confidence in the process, by which commodities and contractual services are procured.

It is essential to the effective and ethical procurement of commodities and contractual services, that a system of uniform procedures are utilized by governmental agencies in managing and procuring commodities and contractual services; that detailed justification of agency decisions in the procurement of commodities and contractual services be maintained; and that adherence by the agency and the vendor to specific ethical considerations be required.

On February 2, 2010 the elected body, City Attorney, City Manager, Assistant City Managers, Finance Director, Public Works Director and Purchasing Director, conspired with WM Butch Carter to violate the Procurement Legislative Intent of F.S. 287.011.

The City Attorney Pamala Ryan the author of the internal MEMO sent to the Mayor, City Council, City Manager, Purchasing Director, Finance Director and Public Works Director exposes their conspicuously offensive violations of F. S. 287.001, F.S. 287.011 and F. S. 287.057(2)(b) (2006).

The following are the pertinent explosive points that would be exposed in a Federal Civil Lawsuit, and possibly lead to criminal indictments of elected officials:

1. The Council executed with WM a five (5) year contract with an optional five (5) years on February 2, 2011. The contract execution violated RFP 246-09, Procurement Resolution 168-09, City Procurement Ordinance 2412, F.S. 287.057, F.S. 286.011, F. S. 287.011, F.S. 287.012 (22) (2006), and F. S. 287.057(2) (b) (2006).

2. The elected body, City Attorney, City Manager, Finance Director, Purchasing Director, Assistant City Managers and Interim Public Works Director are conspiring with WM to cover up the kickbacks.

City Atty. Ryan recommended on March 28, 2011 that the elected body alters WM’s contract executed on February 2, 2011.

3. The City Attorney’s recommended alteration reference Community Benefits disguised as Council’s discretionary “slush fund” was not offered in WM’s response to RFP 246-09 in March 2010. The addition of Community Benefits to WM response on February 2, 2011, violates RFP F.S. 287.012 (22) (2006).

4. The alteration is necessary to legitimize the “Pay for Play” kickbacks. However, the executed contract as of February 2, 2011 cannot be altered to redefine the terms of Community Benefits, as memorialized on February 2, 2011 on DVD and in the City’s minutes.

5. On February 2, 2011 in the City Council meeting, City Councilman Cedrick Thomas stated on the record that he was not prepared to approve WM’s $30 M contract, unless they agreed to contribute money annually to each elected official for their slush funds for unmonitored distribution. The “Pay for Play” negotiations are forever memorialized on DVD and the City Council minutes.

6. All of the legal responders to RFP 246-09 were present when the “Pay for Play” negotiations took place with WM on February 2, 2011 in the City Council meeting. The meeting is documented on DVD by the City’s clerk Carrie Ward; and is evidence of the Council members’ self-incriminating comments, which violated their own, approved Procurement Resolution 168-09, Procurement Ordinance 2412 and F.S. 287.057.

7. WM’s general manager Butch Carter stated on the public record on February 2, 2011 that he was authorized to do whatever it takes to get the contract executed. The “Pay for Play” negotiations lead by Councilman Cedrick Thomas increased Community Benefits from $0 to $90,000 annually.

The Community Benefits aka slush fund was not in WM’s response to RFP 246-09 and violates F.S. 287.057, F.S. 286.011, F. S. 287.011, F.S. 287.012 (22) (2006), and F. S. 287.057(2)(b) (2006).

8. In the negotiation phase of an RFP under Florida and Federal laws, the award must still be based on the ranking of the offerors in the RFP criteria. WM made no offering of Community Benefits in their response to RFP 246-09, and they ranked last based on the eight (8) categories outlined in the RFP criteria.

9. In the negotiation phase of an RFP under Florida and Federal laws, the award must still be based on the ranking of the offerors in the RFP criteria. Waste Pro M made offering of Community Benefits in their response to RFP 246-09, and they ranked first based on the eight (8) categories outlined in the RFP criteria. However, the elected body denied them their rightful ranking to negotiation per Florida Procurement RFP Statute 287.057.

10. Waste Pro’s legal sealed response to RFP 246-09 in March 2010 included Community Benefits: fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000) to the City’s Scholarship Fund, fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000) to the City’s academic John F. Kennedy Summer School Program, ten thousand dollars ($10,000) to R. J. Hendley Education Center, and twenty thousand dollars ($20,000) to the Youth Recreation Association Scholarship Fund. Waste Pro’s annual Community Benefits commitment was $60,000, as stated in their response to RFP 246-09 in March 2010.

All of the non-profit programs Waste Pro USA identified for Community Benefits have a long history of more than fifteen (15) years serving minority, low-income and educationally challenged children in the City of Riviera Beach.

11. Waste Pro’s Community Benefits offerings are permanently etched in their sealed response to RFP 246-09 March 2010, in the City’s Procurement records, Clerk records, Attorney records, City Manager records, Finance Director records, Public Works records, purchasing website, and the Palm Beach Post Newspaper May 2010, which is the major newspaper in Palm Beach County, Fl, also carried the advertised legal notice for RFP 246-09 for the City of Riviera Beach.

12. Waste Pro’s Community Benefits in their sealed response to RFP 246-09 in March 2010 was $30,000 less than, WM’s “Pay for Play” Community Benefits, negotiated on the public record on February 2, 2011; nearly a full year later after the sealed responses for RFP 264-09 were accepted by the City. A benefit that WM never etched in their response in March 2010 to the City’s RFP 246-09.

13. City Atty. Pamala Ryan in March 2011, one (1) year later after four (4) contractors responded to RFP 246-09 in March 2010, allegedly reviewed with Palm Beach County Ethics Commission, the Community Benefits illegally negotiated with WM on February 2, 2011 by Council Cedrick Thomas on behalf of the elected body.

14. Pamala Ryan is a licensed attorney in the State of Florida, and the City of Riviera Beach chief municipality attorney for ten (10) years. Atty. Ryan with forethought, purposefully did not seek the review of Palm Beach County Inspector General, before the elected body violated RFP 246-09, Procurement Resolution 168-09,  F.S. 287.057, F.S. 286.011, F. S. 287.011, F.S. 287.012 (22) (2006), and F. S. 287.057(2)(b) (2006), by executing a contract with WM on February 2, 2011.

15. Atty. Ryan is required to provide legal oversight on all contracts on the Council agenda; authored by the City’s department directors for a majority vote by the elected officials.

16.  Atty. Ryan was fully aware that the voters of Riviera Beach on November 2, 2010 election, cast their constitutional votes forcing the City of Riviera Beach elected officials to abide by rules and laws, outlined by Palm Beach County Inspector General. The voters spoke two (2) full months, before the elected body executed the illegal contract with WM on February 2, 2011.

16a. Palm Beach County Inspector General has legal oversight over Riviera Beach procurement and contracts as of November 3, 2010, not the Ethics Commission. The Inspector General was established by Palm Beach County Board of Commissioners through Ordinance 97-105.

17. Atty. Ryan alleged contact with Director Allan Johnson Palm Beach County Ethics Commission, established by Palm Beach County Board of Commissioners through Ordinance 97-105; is a masked attempt to un-break Florida laws already broken on February 2, 2011, and not governed by the Ethics Commission.

17a. One (1) month, twenty-six (26) days after Atty. Ryan sat silent, and allowed the elected body to execute an illegal contract with WM that included Community Benefits; which violated F.S. 287.057, F.S. 286.011, F. S. 287.011, F.S. 287.012 (22) (2006), and F. S. 287.057(2)(b) (2006).

18. Atty. Ryan allegedly was told by the Ethics Commission Executive Director Alan Johnson that Palm Beach County State Attorney convened a “Grand Jury” in 2007 that determined that “slush funds” were illegal and unethical.

19. The Palm Beach County Grand Jury in 2007 ruled, that the use of “slush funds”  should be terminated, and a mechanism is put in place to ensure any distribution was equitably dispensed throughout the entire municipality, and not at the sole discretion of the elected officials.

20. The Palm Beach County “Grand Jury” ruled in 2007 that giving thousands of dollars to elected officials especially before an election to do as he/she pleases creates a process that eliminates oversight and politicized the manner of the funding.

21. WM’s $30 M five (5) years contract was approved on February 2, 2011 by Council Lowe, Thomas and Brooks, which constitute a majority vote per the City’s Charter; and a mere (36) days after their favorable vote for WM, the majority Council names were on Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections Ballot for reelection on March 8, 2011.

22. The following are the legal reasons why Waste Pro was ranked number one (1) by the City of Riviera Beach Review Committee for RFP 246-09, and was deemed the best overall value for the taxpayers in their sealed response to RFP 246-09 and Procurement Resolution 168-09.

22a. WM in their sealed response to RFP 246-09 did not address the City’s local preference hiring Ordinance, used for the first time in the City’s largest contractual award, valued at $30 M over five (5) years. WM ranked last in this category.

22b. Waste Pro in their sealed response to 246-09 did address the City’s local preference hiring Ordinance, used for the first time in the City’s largest contractual award, valued at $30 M over five (5) years. Waste Pro offered the following:

1. Ten (10) CDL Drivers with three (3) years’ experience. 2. Eight (8) Helpers who will be trained to perform the work on the rear of the truck.  3. Two (2) Customer Service Representatives with one (1) year experience. A total of twenty (20) new jobs to stimulate the local economy and reduced the City’s high employment rate.

22c. WM in their sealed response to RFP 246-09 did not address the increase in the annual franchise fee. WM offered the same annual rate of $1.4 M they paid the City for the last ten (10) years. WM ranked last in this category.

22d. Waste Pro did address in their seal response the increase in the annual franchise in their sealed response to RFP 246-09, and offered the following: An annual increase of $120,000, which raised the City‘s franchise fee from $1.4 M to $1.52 M, representing an additional $600,000 in revenue to the City’s general operating fund over the five (5) years contract period.

22e. WM in their sealed response to RFP 246-09 offered the City a mere 10% for local minority subcontracting. The City’s local minority subcontracting Ordinance goal is a minimum of 15%. WM ranked last in this category.

22f. Waste Pro in their sealed response to RFP 246-09 committed to reinvest fifty one (51%) of their contractual dollars earned from the City into local and minority subcontracting. The reinvestment represented fourteen million dollars ($14 M) over five (5) years to the majority low-income taxpayers in Riviera Beach.

23. Atty. Ryan participated in the essential negotiations in October 2010 with WM illegal contract extension, which violated F.S. 287.057 (13), F.S. 286.011, F.S. 501.204 and 501. 2077 Deceptive Trade Practices against Senior and Handicapped Citizens, and the terms and conditions of WM’s contract executed October 2006 (referencing contract extension, which prohibited any rate increases).

24. Atty. Ryan provided the legal oversight for WM’s contract executed by the Elected body in October 2006 for its final contract option for five (5) years. Atty. Ryan had first-hand knowledge that WM could not increase the residential rate in a contract extension per the terms of the contract from October 2006-September 2010.

25. Atty. Ryan’s signature on a contract agenda item on October 6, 2010, in her capacity as the chief municipal attorney, represents to the taxpayers that the public interest has been legally protected as prescribed in legislative laws in the State of Florida.

26. Atty. Ryan’s signature on WM’s illegal contract extension on October 6, 2010 is evidence that she is a willing participant in the conspiracy with WM and the elected body.

27. In May 2010 City Manager Ruth Jones and Purchasing Director Benjamin Guy formally recommended that the Council by majority vote approve Waste Pro USA to proceed to negotiate a five (5) year contract valued at $30 M.

28. Atty. Ryan’s signature on a contract agenda item, in her capacity as the chief municipal attorney, represents to the taxpayers that the public interest has been legally protected as prescribed in legislative laws in the State of Florida.

29. Atty. Ryan’s signature on WM’s illegal contract extension on October 6, 2010 is evidence that she is a willing participant in the conspiracy with WM, elected body and key level executive staffers.

30.  Atty. Ryan was fully aware that the voters of Riviera Beach on November 2, 2010 election, cast their constitutional votes forcing the City of Riviera Beach elected officials to abide by rules and laws outlined by Palm Beach County Inspector General and Ethics Commission.

31. Purchasing Director Benjamin Guy has been the City’s chief procurer for ten (10) years, and is required to review all procurement contracts to ensure they meet the City of Riviera Beach legal requirements for Procurement Ordinance 2412 and F.S. 287.057.

32. WM’s contract executed by the elected body in October 2006 was reviewed by Purchasing Director Benjamin Guy. His signature on the contract agenda item, in his capacity as the chief municipal procurer, represented to the taxpayers that the public interest had been legally protected as prescribed in legislative procurement laws in the State of Florida and the City of Riviera Beach for optional five (5) years contracts.

33. Purchasing Director Guy’s signature on WM’s illegal contract extension agenda item on October 6, 2010 is evidence that he is a willing participant in the conspiracy with WM, elected body and key level executive staffers.

34. Purchasing Director Guy failed in his chief procurement capacity to inform the taxpayers that F.S. 287.057 (13) does not permit an elected body to authorize a contract extension beyond six (6) months, and does not allow WM to increase the residential rate during any length of a contract extension, including month to month.

35. Purchasing Director Benjamin Guy failed in his chief procurement capacity to inform the taxpayers, of WM’s declaration that the City’s residential customers PAGE 9 WM & City of Riviera Beach Slush Fund would receive a residential rate increase, unless the elected body authorize a one (1) year contract extension was not true.

36. Purchasing Director Guy’s omission is evidence of him conspiring with WM and the elected body to violate 501.204 and 501. 2077 Deceptive Trade Practices against Senior and Handicapped Citizens, and the terms and conditions of WM’s contract executed October 2006 (referencing contract extension, which prohibited residential rate increases).

37. The City’s elected body and key executive level staffers conspired with WM to violate all of the above Florida Statutes governing RFP 246-09, by not negotiating with Waste Pro USA ranked number one (1) in 2010 and 2011, before awarding a $30 M contract with the last ranked responder WM on February 2, 2011.

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Chaz Stevens

Chaz Stevens

Professional Troublemaker
Father of the world-famous Pabst Blue Ribbon Festivus Pole, Chaz’s antics are sure to entertain, educate, and irritate. Chaz has been appeared on The Colbert Report, The Daily Show, Fox News, and hundreds of national media outlets, and several international newspapers.
Chaz Stevens

@TweetsByMAOS

According to John Stewart, I am the General Patton of the War on Xmas. Father, Pabst Blue Ribbon Festivus Pole. Professional troublemaker.
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Chaz Stevens
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