By Roger Gitlin – EYE ON DEL NORTE – January 20, 2022
Can the Crescent City Harbor survive yet another self-inflicted and serving-serving scam?
The legacy of the Harbor Commission is a sad, dishonest and unscrupulous saga which brings great shame and disrepute to Del Norte County. New leadership with Harbor president Rick Shepherd, Secretary/ Commissioner Harry Adams and Commissioner Gerhard Weber bring a new level of healthy energy, ethical standards and mutual respect. I wonder aloud if this trio can turn around the years / decades of past Harbor corruption and malfeasance.
Part 1…of a Two Part observation of present day Harbor governance.
The latest foray into disrepute involves a dubious investment banker named Alex Lemus who CEOs a solar company called Renewable Energy Capital Investors. Miami-based Mr. Lemus was the only responder to a Harbor District Request for Proposal (RFP)to explore solar energy options for the District, years back.
Voila! The Project was underway and one can observe the solar panels festooned about the Harbor.
Commissioners Wes White and Brian Stone, who have both served as Harbor presidents bought the slick-talking Lemus hook, line and anchovie. Both of these long-term commissioners were active and engaged with the Lemus camp.
Newly-appointed Harbormaster Tim Petrick is also a bad actor and willing shill, inept and unprepared.
Now it becomes very interesting:
There’s a $288,000+ Solar Lighting Agreement (SLA) payment to the Harbor due now from a now-defunct entity under the aegis of Renewable Energy Capital Investors who apparently is unable to make this payment. Investment Banker Lemus has emphatically stated he will NOT make this quarter-million dollar+ payment.
The Harbor and Investment Banker Lemus are in a Harbor Energy stand-off. Who blinks first? And why wasn’t the Agreement clear and cogent filled with lots of ” what ifs…” Poor oversight.
The two Commissioners who fancied this folly are White and Stone.There are red flags galore waving in the Harbor wind to walk this solar power nonsense back before it becomes a real albatross around Del Norte County. The future of a competent, fair Commission lies with Weber, Adams and Shepherd.
The Dredging issue, with no shortage of face-saving antics from Stone and the insidious agenda to employ Investment Banker Lemus to… “completely redevelop the Harbor” will be shared with you, Thursday…
One thought on “Crescent City Harbor Scam”
Only one bid for the solar project? That reminds me of the sole bid for the Crescent City Sewer plant project. I wonder how many other “Sole Bids” have been received and accepted for all government projects in Del Norte County. Since the same sewer contractors were used by the Crescent City and the Tolowa Tribe, this phenomenon may be far-reaching enough to touch our indigenous Sovereign Nations. Was this simply a matter of poor advertising of bid requests; or was the “Fix” in from the very beginning? Not that any of our hallowed government leaders would ever be involved in graft; but this does raise an eyebrow or two.