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No Bid Contracts WPB


This story began in 2010 with Mayor Lois Frankel’s 2nd. term as Mayor of WPB, and continues 9 years later.

Let’s start with the City Commission meeting held on 9/9/2019 with item #11 on the agenda.

#11 Resolution No. 290-19 approving a Security Services Agreement with Professional Security Corporation to provide security services for all City facilities and roving services in Northwood.

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA APPROVING A SECURITY SERVICES AGREEMENT WITH PROFESSIONAL SECURITY CORPORATION TO PROVIDE SECURITY SERVICES FOR CITY FACILITIES AND ROVING SECURITY IN NORTHWOOD; WAIVING THE PROCUREMENT ORDINANCES approval for contracts in excess of $50,000 that have not been competitively selected. Section 66-94 of the Procurement Code requires Commission The waiver of the procurement code requirements are necessary to avoid confusion and gaps in responsibility resulting from different security firms serving the downtown street environment.

The City wishes to engage the firm to provide security for the following City facilities, and roving security services in Northwood: City Center, including City Hall, Photographic Museum building, City Plaza -Mandel Public Library -City Parking Garages, including City Center Garage, Clematis Garage, Banyan Garage, Evernia Garage, Sapodilla Garage. -City Municipal Complex -Water Treatment Plant -East Central Region Water Reclamation Facility (Wastewater Plant) Currie Park -City Parks and Youth Empowerment Centers.

What this is all about is making the contract a no bid contract. In other words no other company will be considered, and the contract will be awarded to PSC for 3 years with a possible 2 year extension.

The vote was unanimous and if you have the courage you can view the meeting below.

https://vimeo.com/channels/781232

Below is the contract, and here are the highlights.

for the first year of this Agreement shall be One Million Five Hundred Eighty-Three Thousand Seven Hundred Fifty-Nine and 10/100 Dollars ($1,583,759.10).

$1,583,759.10 x 3 years= $4,751,277.30
Additional 2 years =        $3,167,518.20
5 year total  $7,918,795.50     Do you really believe this figure will not increase ?

“The term of the engagement under the Agreement shall commence on October 1, 2019 and shall continue for a term of three (3) years, subject to renewal or termination as provided in this Agreement.
5.2 Renewal. This Agreement may be renewed upon the mutual agreement of City and Contractor for an additional two (2) year term upon the same terms and conditions.”    Read PSC contract below.

PSC Security Services 2019

How much does a Police Officer earn in West Palm Beach?  Not enough when you consider how dangerous it is to work in this and other cities.
There goes the fire fund tax money. No new fire trucks and next year it will be the same. Fire Dept. has equipment that needs to be replaced so we must raise the fire fee again.

Here’s where it began.

Posted May 8, 2010      This was during Mayor Lois Frankel 2nd. term. If she had done this in her first term she wouldn’t have seen a second, like Mayor Muoio turning WPB into Copenhagen also her 2nd term. I shudder to think what James will do if re-elected.

“West Palm Beach hires private security for waterfront after denying police raises.”

“When city commissioners on Monday voted to spend $72,000 for a private firm to guard the waterfront, they did so just minutes after denying raises to police.

To the Palm Beach County Police Benevolent Association, the decision to take money from the city’s strained general fund to pay rent-a-guards to walk the docks for a year was a slap in the face to officers who have been protesting the elimination of step raises this year and what they believe is city misspending.

IPC “is here to work with the city, the mayor and the chief,” said Perez-Borroto, who goes by Willie Perez.

Penque said city cops on duty downtown can handle any security breach at the docks, but DDA director Melissa Wohlust argues that dock guards have different responsibilities from police officers.

On top of monitoring for problems, Wohlust said, IPC guards already stationed downtown take newsletters to businesses, hand out umbrellas to people on Clematis Street and give directions. At the waterfront, the IPC guards will greet visitors and help them tie up their boats.

IPC has handled CityPlace security for years but has been gaining work beyond Clematis Street and the waterfront.

Although security guards cannot arrest criminals, their presence deters crime supporters say.

On April 29, Perez – escorting Frankel through the SunFest protest – admits he spat at and lightly head-butted protester Jim Whalen (the same protester who the next day was involved in an argument with Frankel’s son, Ben Lubin, which led to Lubin’s arrest).

Frankel praises Perez for “dedicating his life to the revitalization of downtown West Palm Beach and the Northwood Area” and for “running a very professional organization.”

Perez’s beef with police goes back to 1993 when he was fired as a Miami police officer for filing six false police reports. He admitted to the accusations at the time, saying he hadn’t properly filled out the forms, but he was never charged.

IPC’s waterfront contract was approved by a 3-1 vote of the city commission. Commissioner Kimberly Mitchell was the lone dissenter and Commissioner Jeri Muoio recused herself because her son-in-law works for IPC.”

You have read the highlights I wanted to point out to readers.  Read the entire story below.

https://www.palmbeachpost.com/article/20100508/NEWS/812034511

 

1/2016 (BULLDOG)   I would recommend subscribing to Bulldog, they are on top of everything.

“Congresswoman Lois Frankel’s endorsement of a private security guard firm whose owner poured $11,000 into her campaign after her support helped him land a sweet, no-bid government contract appears to have run afoul of House ethics rules prohibiting business endorsements.

Ethics principles restrict how members of Congress may interact with commercial enterprises.

“Members and staff must avoid becoming too closely affiliated with any commercial entity, in order to avoid any appearance that they are accruing benefits by virtue of improper influence exerted from their position in Congress, or are dispensing special favors,” the House Ethics Manual says.

As FloridaBulldog.org  reported last month, however, records and interviews show that Rep. Frankel was actively involved last year in pushing a company called Professional Security Consultants (PSC) for the lucrative job of providing a team of unarmed “security ambassadors” to the Fort Lauderdale Downtown Development Authority (DDA) to enhance safety with foot and bicycle patrols in places like Riverwalk.

DDA minutes show that Democrat Frankel introduced the company to DDA officials, and later met with a DDA delegation about the matter.

The DDA soon hired PSC without seeking competitive bids. PSC’s contract continues this year with the program’s budget doubled to $200,000 with help from the city.

According to DDA board chairman Michael Weymouth, “Lois spoke highly of the work they had done for the West Palm Beach DDA when she was mayor.”

The company also featured Frankel’s official photograph and endorsement of PSC and its regional boss, Willie Perez, in a PowerPoint marketing pitch to the DDA’s board of directors before its unanimous June 12, 2014 vote to hire PSC without seeking competitive bids.

Frankel herself wrote a “To Whom It May Concern” letter of recommendation for Perez under letterhead that identifies her as “Representative Lois J. Frankel Member of Congress.”

“It was with his guidance and the use of his Security Ambassadors that West Palm Beach saw two important neighborhoods, our downtown and Northwood Village business district, transform from dangerous places to friendly and safe venues,” says Frankel’s Dec. 26, 2013 letter.

Frankel’s letter does not mention PSC by name. Still, the company used it less than a month later as part of its successful competitive bid package to Pompano Beach’s Northwest Community Redevelopment Agency for a  $300,000-a-year contract  to operate a security ambassadors program there. The contract is for three years, according to CRA records.

CRA director Nguyen Tran said he has never spoken to Frankel and does not recall her being actively involved in events leading up to the contract.

Frankel, whose coastal district stretches south to include downtown Fort Lauderdale, declined to be interviewed.

“She loves Willie, obviously. She recommended him to the Fort Lauderdale DDA because of what he did when she was mayor,” of West Palm Beach, said Lyons. “They called the West Palm Beach DDA who connected them with Willie.

A page from PSC’s PowerPoint marketing presentation to the Fort Lauderdale DDA in June 2014. Rep. Frankel’s office said Monday the congresswoman “had no idea” PSC was using her image or statements to market itself.

DDA executive director Chris Wren said in an interview that the owner of a local security firm inquired about submitting a proposal before PSC was hired, but was told the job would not be bid. Wren said, too, that the board rejected his recommendation that bids be obtained.

The contract with PSC was signed Sept. 30, 2014. Federal records show that one month earlier, PSC founder and owner Moshe Alon, of California, made two donations totaling $4,500 to Lois J. Frankel for Congress. Since then the former Israeli secret service agent and bodyguard for the late Hollywood star Elizabeth Taylor gave another $6,400 to Frankel’s campaign in seven contributions – the latest last September.

According to the Code of Ethics for Government Service, House members may help constituents obtain information regarding government contracts and deal with government regulations, but cannot “discriminate unfairly by the dispensing of special favors or privileges to anyone, whether for remuneration or not.”

House rules say members must also “avoid becoming too closely affiliated” with businesses to avoid any appearance of impropriety.

The Fort Lauderdale DDA’s security guard contract isn’t the first government contract involving PSC regional boss Perez to raise questions of favoritism by Rep. Frankel.

In 2010, the Palm Beach Post reported about police union anger toward IPC International, the security guard company where Perez was then regional manager, after city commissioners hired it to guard the city’s waterfront. The paper also reported that Perez was periodically serving “as Mayor Lois Frankel’s bodyguard.”

In an editorial several days later, the paper expressed concern about a “perception of favoritism from Mayor Frankel’s relationship with the security company’s regional manager.

“Mayor Frankel denies that Willie Perez gives her free bodyguard services, accompanying her to events downtown. Instead, she says, he is accompanying her on weekly inspection tours,” the editorial said. “Still the mayor gushes over Mr. Perez’s company, Chicago-based IPC International, and he keeps getting city contracts…to patrol downtown, city hall, the Northwood Business District, Broadway and now the waterfront.”

Universal Protective Service acquired IPC in 2013, and Perez soon went to work for PSC, bringing at least some of those government contracts with him.”

Read the entire story below.

https://www.floridabulldog.org/2016/01/11964/

Keith James actions, in my opinion shows total lack of respect for our Police Department by awarding a contract to PSC.  Does he have any intention of replacing the 25 officers who are retiring? If I have a problem I call the police not a security guard who has no arrest powers, but can hand out umbrella’s, give directions and tie a boat to the dock.

Along with promoting city staff and costing taxpayers over a million dollars for 6 employees he has hired a man for $125,000.00/ year to serve as  “Dignitary Protection”. Mr. Key’s recently accompanied James to Columbia, SC and that trip cost taxpayers over $1,800.00 dollars for a couple of day’s. Why does James do this?  Actually anyone can do it if your drunk with power and have taxpayers money on hand.

Commissioner’s you need to start doing a little investigation on item’s you pass, and forget what “Staff Recommends”.  Staff wants what the Mayor wants or they can update their resume. Hopefully you are aware James can’t fire you, but residents can and will.

See the expense report below.

Gregory A Key July 31 – August 03, 2019 (Columbia, Sc.

One picture is worth a thousand words, and I have the picture, but unable to upload due to message “Sorry this file type is not permitted for security reasons.” I will describe it and if you want to view it e-mail me and I will forward it to you. 5 people standing, Keith James, woman may be his wife, Willie Perez, Tom Dorrita, and Joe Ianno. It was a Campaign Fundraiser for Keith James for Mayor. The best part of the picture the PSC logo. No wonder I can’t upload it for this story.

One final thought. I wonder if PSC founder and owner Moshe Alon contributed to Keith James campaign fund as he did for Lois Frankel?