By Donna Westfall – October 19, 2017 – When we’re wrong, we apologize. And, we made a mistake. The mistake was misspelling Aadam Trask’s name. How do I know this. Because he stopped me in Fisherman’s Restaurant to complain about misspelling his name. I didn’t know him from Adam, so I asked him, “Who are you?” He wouldn’t tell me. He just wanted to continue complaining.
Here’s what he complained about: Charles Slert’s 3 part article about the Point of Honor Veteran’s Memorial Monument pointing out some of Aadam Trask’s shortcomings as project manager.
It didn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out I was talking with Aadam Trask. And I did try to make it clear to him that he had every right to respond.
In follow-up to our short conversation peppered with the f-word and other unkindly things about me and Crescent City Times, I sent Aadam Trask the following questions via email requesting a response by 5 pm, Friday the 13th of October.
Here are the seven questions:
1. Are you getting paid to work as Project Manager? If yes, how much and when did it start?
2. Do you have drawing(s) of the “new,” or “revised”, or “re-designed” Point of Honor, Veterans Memorial Monument?
3. Do you have a timeline of events so that the public can be made aware as to a completion date? If yes, can I see it?
4. Do you have a Project Budget showing total costs with breakdowns by phase for my review?
5. Have any grants been secured for the original Slert Design, or for the revised design? If yes, when were they obtained, who provided the grant $, and how much?
6. I understand there was an agreement – “Architects/Engineer/Owner Agreement” spelling out the roles and responsibilities that was approved on March 27, 2017 by a 5-2 vote. Where is a copy of that agreement and can I see it?
7. Do you have any idea when the project will be completed with;
(a) building permits,
(b) by phase,
(c) approval by the Calif. Coastal Commission?
Aadam Trask did not respond to any of the questions. Guess they want to keep this a secret for the time being.
I did see meeting minutes wherein he tried resigning as project manager on February 22, 2017, but Kelly Schellong moved to decline Aadam’s resignation and the motion was seconded by Jeremy Herber and passed.
As recently as 7 days ago, I received a copy of Kelly Schellong’s email to committee members:
“Hi all, I have been told that Roger and Bob have been discussing the project and it’s status at their morning meetings that Donna Westfall attends? I also saw that Bob congratulated Donna Westfall on Facebook for her accurate ‘reporting’on her website, to include the Point of Honor (which actually was just printing Charles letter). I’m interested to hear from Roger the details of what has been discussed and the perception he believes is out there from these discussions. I know we had as a committee agreed to keep the changes confidential until we could go through the maneuvering with the coastal commission and working with Senator McGuire but now that Charles is working with Donna (which is funny to me knowing the history), I’d like to have an update so I can accurately inform people when I’m asked. Thank you!”
To which I sent Kelly Schellong the following e-mail:
#1) When publishing articles in www.crescentcitytimes.com
, I read everything first. I don’t have to agree with them. Those 3 part articles were by Charles Slert. And, quite frankly, I was not aware of what was going on.
#2) When I met Aadam Trask at Fisherman’s Restaurant Wednesday morning, he refused to identify himself to me although he had plenty of denigrating things to say about me and our news source, Crescent City Times. Despite his demeanor, I told him he had every right to respond and as a matter-of-fact I had questions for him. See my email to him attached.
#3) Yes, of course I remember the disrespectful way my fellow council members treated me during the ’08 – ’12 years I was on the City Council complaining of what looked like corruption on the WWTP job…. you and Charles included. See #4.
#4) I usually don’t hold a grudge as compared to some of the other small-minded people I’ve encountered in this town.
#5) At the ground breaking ceremony a few months ago, I asked you questions concerning the financials of the Point of Honor – which you didn’t seem to know very much about. Matter-of-fact, you couldn’t even give me contact info to Harlan Zeigler.
#6) I asked those questions of you because after so many years I couldn’t understand why it was taking so long to get the job done.
#7) I meet quite often at the Town Hall Meetings held at 6 am at Fisherman’s restaurant. Sup. Bob Berkowitz is there nearly 99% of the time. Sup. Roger Gitlin is there less often. We discuss a whole range of subjects. I don’t see where either of them have had much to say about the Point of Honor other than to parrot my sentiments – which is, why isn’t it done yet?
#8) I’m wondering if you, or anyone involved with the Point of Honor is informing all those who have contributed money that there may be a design change. Don’t you think that people are entitled to know what it’s going to look like if the committee is making changes? Sorta sounds like a bait and switch and I know that’s not the intention of the committee.
#9) I believe all involved would like to see this accomplished with the least amount of controversy and a huge effort to just get the thing done.
#10) Like it or not, this is news worthy. So, Kelly, if you would like to contribute any information that would enhance the discussion, I would welcome it and publish it. This goes for all members of the committee.
Now, getting back to our apology to Aadam Trask – Aadam with two “A’s,” we sincerely apologize for misspelling your name. It won’t happen again.