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Blashka Tower swap is approved by all

August 27, 2013

UPDATE: As was almost assured, the three entities involved in the city’s major property swap — considered by some as a foolish or even worse — was approved on Tuesday.
The deal between the Harlingen City Commission, the Harlingen Economic Development Bord and the Harlingen Community Investment Board would have been an unanimous decision except for one HCIB member.
That would be Joe Rubio, who said the deal was not to improve the quality of life, nor job creation.
THE REAL DEAL WILL HAVE MORE ON THIS WEDNESDAY.
Meantime, here is the Monday column concering this –Jerry Deal
THE REAL DEAL
By JERRY DEAL
In what some local people, including those who are involved in financial affairs, plus others — including this writer — believe to be a really bad investment for the city, is expected to be finalized Tuesday, in a meeting that begins at City Hall at 11 a.m.
That would be the property swap that involves the Harlingen Community Investment Board, the Harlingen Economic Development Board and the city of Harlingen.
All three boards will be present at the City Hall session.
In case you have been out of the city or hiding under a rock, it goes like this:
In a $300,000 deal, the Harlingen Community Improvement Board pays the Economic Development Board for property at 710 N. Commerce.
The EDC then swaps to the HCIB the Blaschka Tower and adjacent property. No money involved, but?
In reality, the city will be owners of that fantastic white elephant.
The Blaschka owner makes out while the taxpayers lose.
The N. Commerce building is valued at nearly $600,000 by the Cameron County Tax Appraisal District, while the tower and adjacent property is valued at less than $100,000.
I believe that everyone down the line will be sorry about this transaction. The only thing is when it is realized what a bad deal it was, those that consummated it will probably be long gone.
HCIB member Joe Rubio has said that if it is completed he will start a movement against it.

52 Responses to Blashka Tower swap is approved by all

  1. john jay R. on August 27, 2013 at 1:01 am

    UNF*&%ING BELIEVEABLE!!

    • Paige Turner on August 27, 2013 at 10:01 am

      It’s called a long-term investment by pro-growth visionaries. The naysayers will be eating their words in 10 years or less.

      • john jay R. on August 27, 2013 at 3:55 pm

        You REALLY NEED TO PROVIDE(ball park figure) HOW MUCH MONEY THIS “INVESTMENT” MONEY PIT IS GOING TO TAKE JUST TO BRING IT UP TO CODE. IT DOES NOT TAKE MUCH THINKING TO REALIZE IT IS NOT AN IVESTEMENT AT ALL.

        Paige,all you need to do is analyze the FACTS. No BS,No spin,No propaganda from your clique’. Rubio and Benton have provided more than enough proof to show why this is a bad deal and idea. NOW IT’S YOUR TURN. BUST OUT THE FACTS AS TO WHY THIS IS AN INVESTEMENT?

        • john jay R. on August 27, 2013 at 4:31 pm

          Here Paige,some homework for you to debunk if you can.

          Is this statement true?

          James on August 13, 2013 at 7:34 am

          The pilings supporting the Blaschka Towers are creosote treated wood poles.

          How long will it be before the foundation gives away and the building
          falls over and goes “BOOM”.

          • Red Barchetta on August 27, 2013 at 9:29 pm

            Those pilings and that structure will more than outlive babies born today.

          • smalltownboy on August 27, 2013 at 11:17 pm

            Creosote treated wood used for pilings usually lasts from 20 to 40 years. If this building has those types of pilings, then it should have gone “BOOM” long time ago. hmmmm, maybe they aren’t wood pilings?

          • john jay R. on August 28, 2013 at 12:00 am

            Red Barchetta on August 27, 2013 at 9:29 pm

            Those pilings and that structure will more than outlive babies born today.

            Really? How old is the structure? How old? Please inform us? How many years did it take to build it back then? Please Red,please inform us.

            Check this out,

            http://www.gulfcoasttreated.com/creosote-treated-wood

            Then scroll down to,

            Why choose creosote treated wood?

            and read this,

            “Long-lasting, from 20 to 75 years depending on specific use”

            If indeed it is this type of treated wood holding it up,wouldn’t(no pun intended)you have to say that it is about time for it’s purpose to be outlived?

            Some of those who control your clique’ are about that old as well and are getting ready to croak. Why am I disrespectful you might ask? Because these people have never had any respect for the taxpayers of Harlingen and their God will have the ultimate Judgement for them. Remember you can not buy your way into Heaven especially after you have gained your wealth in unjust ways.

            Anywayzzz getting off subject.

            The building is in extremely bad shape and you would have to be blind not to see this. Futhermore the pilings if creosote are toxic as well along with the insulation if it is indeed asbestos. Shall I go on little Red Sports Car?

            I anticipate your answer on the age of the building.

  2. The Real Dennis on August 27, 2013 at 8:19 am

    It is so funny that the story line wound up on page 2 of the Valley Morning Late. I don’t know why Chris Boswell and City Hall hide these things in executive session? What Chris wants, Chris gets. We have a very good puppet commission who cannot use their common sense when it comes to taxpayer money. Lets just see what circle gets the “gifts” when the time comes to clean that “rat-hole” up?

  3. erlkonig on August 27, 2013 at 9:19 am

    It seems to me that the city just wants to get Blashka Tower saleable. The public bathroom part may just be a workaround to make it work on paper, legal public use jargon. Improving the property is actually in the city’s best interest with the minimalist of improvements, windows, power washing and any other improvements to make the property attractive to sell. I don’t think the city wants to keep the tower, it is not the city’s job to be a landlord for tenants. If there is interest in the downtown area, then “breaking even” at least is good if it entices a developer to come and invest in the property, especially if someone is willing to develop lofts. That could mean high property taxes for the city. Afterall Blashka Tower wasn’t going to improve itself.

    • john jay R. on August 27, 2013 at 4:01 pm

      It’s a money pit,there is no feasible reason to throw money in it. It will be in the millions just to bring it up to code. Have you ever been inside it Erlkonig?

      I don’t know what it takes to make people realize because they sure as Hell must be blind. Benton and Rubio have made more than an argument for this supposed “deal” proving it is a no winner. And they are not just doing this with opinion,they are providing facts as to why this is a shit deal for the taxpayers of Harlingen.

      • Red Barchetta on August 27, 2013 at 9:35 pm

        John (whiner crybaby) Jay, you sure have an enormously difficult time understanding the difference between opinion and fact. Here’s a quick guide: When you, Joe Rubio and Kenneth Benton blog it is opinion. Most everything p

        • Red Barchetta on August 27, 2013 at 9:38 pm

          (Cont’d from above. Inadvertently hit the post button): most everything posted on this site is opinion.

          • john jay R. on August 27, 2013 at 11:41 pm

            “everything posted on this site is opinion.”

            Coming from you of course. I just can not find an instance were you presented fact to back up your Bullshit propaganda there little red sports car.

            And you still have not presented ANY FACT to rebut what I,Rubio or Benton have stated.

            Call it what you want but being critical with questioning for open and fair city government that actually thinks about what it is doing to it’s taxpayers is not whining.

            It’s the American way to dissent you Fascist.

  4. Meathook Mcnulty on August 27, 2013 at 3:53 pm

    the city will use city taxpayers money to fix up the building and get rid of the asbestos contamination, new windows, elevator, power wash outside, new bathrooms of 1st floor, etc. it cost jo wagner over 1 million to get the asbestos out of the reese building, no wonder she wanted all the freebies from the city council and the taxpayers footed her wims. then after several million is sunk into the white elephant you will see the sweetheart deal for the sale of the blaska tower to an old guard insider and the money under the table will flow. And you the city taxpayers will pay for the whole deal. Thanks fat ass!

  5. john jay R. on August 27, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    “Afterall Blashka Tower wasn’t going to improve itself”

    You bring up an excellent point. So is it not the owner of the buildings responsibility to bring it up to code or demolish it?

    It’s funny how this owner has not been up to code in how many decades? But the majority of Harlingen’s citizens and business owners are hounded and forced to comply. That right there shows preferential treatment to which is a shining reason for Harlingen residents and business owners to be up in arms over this Bullshit deal.

    Just another fiasco to put in the book of the most backwards ass city in the Valley and probably the State.

    • john jay R. on August 27, 2013 at 5:13 pm

      Talk about hearing it from the Bull’s ass.

      “The time has come for the city to clean that building up and take responsibility for it,”

      Yes,folks ONLY IN HARLINGEN where the chosen few escape code enforcement and are rewarded with outlandish “deals”. Nothing like being an eyesore to your city and doing nothing about the exterior for years only to be rewarded at the taxpayer’s expense. F*%#ING AMAZING!!

      Just had to see it again because I can not believe my eyes, “The time has come for the city to clean that building up and take responsibility for it,”

      More Bullshit here: http://www.valleymorningstar.com/news/local_news/article_cf784bda-0ecb-11e3-8d0a-0019bb30f31a.html

    • erlkonig on August 28, 2013 at 1:31 pm

      Yeah, but Blashka is iconic in the sense that it is the city’s tallest building and was built before the Great Depression. It has historical significance and adds character to downtown, especially if it’s brought back to life. “Fred’s Garage” on say Morgan Blvd has no significant value in terms of being iconic or historic. Special case? Yes. I don’t think there is any special favoritism for the owner. You have an argument if preferential treatment is given to contractors, without thorough and transparent bidding, who will remodel the building with city money.

      • john jay on August 28, 2013 at 3:21 pm

        Still don’t understand why others are hit by code enforcement and others are given special treatment. I just don’t know? I wonder if being in that clique’ has anything to do with it?

        • Red Barchetta on August 28, 2013 at 9:18 pm

          John Jay, you continue to amaze me with your inability to grasp and understand so many things. Bless your heart!

          • john jay R. on August 28, 2013 at 11:18 pm

            Spoken from the leader of the “insert foot in mouth” club.

            Do I really have to crucify yet again?

  6. erlkonig on August 28, 2013 at 7:59 am

    Where does HCIB get its funding from? Federal and state grants or is it like the Downtown improvement district where it’s members property taxes go to it’s expenses? If it’s either, then I don’t see how Harlingen taxpayers are on the hook for money. The Harlingen EDC will get reimbursed, which is from what I understand, Harlingen taxpayer money. So if other grants or “member fees” pay for Blashka to get saleable which in the end could provide property taxes from tenants to the city and relieve it of blight, then it is a good thing. If the city comes in and does a million and can get it sold to a developer than that’s a drop in the bucket of what would probably cost $20 million to develope and make “rentable” everything from building lofts, appartments, a boutique hotel, restaurant or small shops. That would definetly be worth the money as property tax revenue would eventually make up for the city’s initial investment. Anything close to a newly remodeled and operable Blashka with lofts or boutique hotel is worth a heck of a lot more in terms of property value than an abondoned and ugly Blashka worth $90,000. By the way, it’d probably cost a few million to demolish too.

    • john jay on August 28, 2013 at 3:19 pm

      Benton said it best Erlkonig and expalined why it is a money pit.

  7. The Real Dennis on August 28, 2013 at 4:03 pm

    Hey Jerry, as usual the Valley Morning Late did not ask questions as to why the cost is now at $1.5 Million to renovate that building? I hear a lady was in front of the Mayor’s face trying to find out what happened and at the same time complaining about who lied to the taxpayers of Harlingen?

  8. john jay R. on August 28, 2013 at 7:52 pm

    $1.5 Million just to start and I assure you folks,that is just the tip of the iceberg.

    I wonder how the drainage problems around town will look the next time we get a good rain. HMMMMMMMM?????

    • yigal elohev on August 29, 2013 at 8:32 am

      I’ve seen several comment on this aspect before, so I will just address it here.

      According to today’s online edition of the Valley Morning Star, the city won’t be renovating the building. Instead, the Harlingen Community Improvement Board will spend about $300,000 to “clean the exterior and replace the windows, potentially placing restrooms on the ground floor while marketing the building to potential developers.” Meaning, a developer will purchase the building and use their own money for any renovations/improvements.

      Learn to read. You’d be surprised how handy a command of basic literacy skills can be.

      • john jay on August 29, 2013 at 12:53 pm

        Whatever dude,scroll down,read and PAY ATTENTION TO THE FULL ARTICLE.

        The only way I can see a private investor wasting time on this is to use it as a tax write off. As in a waste of money period.

        Here in case you missed it,this is IN the article you mention,

        ““We didn’t have a whole lot of money,” Garza said Wednesday of the money that would be required to upgrade the tower. “Once I saw the numbers, it didn’t make sense to try to even do it, because we didn’t have that kind of money,” said Garza, indicating that some estimates showed it would take millions to completely upgrade the tower.”

        Work on your comprehension skills smartass.

      • erlkonig on August 29, 2013 at 1:17 pm

        Exactly. There is no point to renovating the whole building. It is impossible to discern what a developer would want. You could put in floors, but the developer could decide they don’t want those floor you put in. All the city has to do is a “make ready” or make it sellable. Which includes bringing up the building to code if it isn’t, cleaning it out and making sure the plumbing, electrical, foundation, etc will pass. That’s it.

      • Paige Turner on August 29, 2013 at 1:45 pm

        @ Yigal: Jumping to erroneous conclusions with very few facts is what anonymous blogging (i.e. “John Jay”) is all about.

        • john jay R. on August 29, 2013 at 6:55 pm

          Paige,yigal,erlkoning what have I been SAYING ALL ALONG?

          It’s a MONEY PIT and I would think that CEO Raudel Garza knows what he is talking about.

        • john jay R. on August 29, 2013 at 6:59 pm

          You guys REALLY NEED TO PAY ATTENTION. What have I been saying all along? It’s a God Damn MONEY PIT.

          Are you guys saying that CEO Raudel Garza does not know what he is talking about?

          • john jay R. on August 29, 2013 at 7:18 pm

            Sorry about the double post,I had received a duplicate messge window after selecting the post comment box and thought the first one did not post.

  9. Red Barchetta on August 28, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    For all of you that oppose this progressive, pro-growth initiative when you incessantly complain about Harlingen lagging behind other “progressive and growing” RGV cities just shows how hypocritical and full of crap you are. This is a calculated risk and the city does not have plans to own this building for long. Know all the facts before you open your pie hole and opine about things you really know little or nothing about.

    • john jay R. on August 28, 2013 at 11:24 pm

      Wow,what an informative statement. Sounds like a person pushing a ponze scheme and to add to it,coming from a commenter that regularly posts without any substantial FACTS to back up their claims.

      All one has to do is read the conflicts of interest that Rubio has filed to SEE WHO IS MAKING PROGRESS HERE IN HARLINGEN. And it sure as Hell ain’t’ the community as a whole that is benefitting.

      So keep pushing your Bullshit Propaganda there little red because you will have to answer for all the lies you spew in the afterlife. That is something you should take to heart you supposed Christian.

  10. john jay on August 29, 2013 at 5:08 am

    “Know all the facts before you open your pie hole and opine about things you really know little or nothing about.” You know,your something else Red. You never cease to amaze me.

    You know what little red sports car,I will let the proof speak for itself.

    http://www.valleymorningstar.com/news/local_news/article_2d45309c-1062-11e3-8bc4-0019bb30f31a.html

    “We didn’t have a whole lot of money,” Garza said Wednesday of the money that would be required to upgrade the tower. “Once I saw the numbers, it didn’t make sense to try to even do it, because we didn’t have that kind of money,” said Garza, indicating that some estimates showed it would take millions to completely upgrade the tower.”

    I rest my case folks.

  11. The Real Dennis on August 29, 2013 at 8:37 am

    @Red Barchetta, wrong my friend! When you HAVE selective growth and only a certain number of individuals get the funds, that is not pro-growth, that’s prejudice against the other individuals who own businesses that would like to have a hand-out to maintain or grow their business. The other problem is the hidden numbers that come out after the fact which gives the suspicion of sneaky dealings. Look, Blaschka made a killing with buying buildings and houses and some dilapidated. He did while working with the City of Harlingen and had the insider information on these places. In Wall Street, this is insider trading just like all those who bought land where the road leading to the next causeway will be built in time. All this insider info for financial gain only enhances the suspicion of sneaky deals like these! I am for pro-growth but where it will actually benefit the City of Harlingen and not benefit the selected pockets of a few!

  12. Paige Turner on August 29, 2013 at 9:14 am

    A most excellent explanation by Mayor Boswell on why this is a good idea can be found in today’s VMS on page A4. Perhaps john jay can post the link so everyone can read it.

    • john jay on August 29, 2013 at 12:55 pm

      Again,for those who do not read full articles,

      An excellent reason not to “INVEST” in this MONEY PIT.

      “We didn’t have a whole lot of money,” Garza said Wednesday of the money that would be required to upgrade the tower. “Once I saw the numbers, it didn’t make sense to try to even do it, because we didn’t have that kind of money,” said Garza, indicating that some estimates showed it would take millions to completely upgrade the tower.”

    • The Real Dennis on August 30, 2013 at 2:41 pm

      Its amazing how Valley Morning Late bows to the powers to be in Harlingen? They post a BS editorial by Chris Boswell to try and sell us on why we need Blaschka Towers? Yet, others who submit editorials have to wait after the fact to get it printed. This is the same Chris Boswell who sold us the BS on the red heads building and Bass Pro. Chris Boswell has no problem trying to push this BS because its TAXPAYER MONEY that he is using to pursue his dream of a renovated Harlingen. Now, I wonder if Raudel Garza will have a job since he admitted that there is not enough money for this place?

  13. erlkonig on August 29, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    There is no point to renovating the whole building. It is impossible to discern what a developer would want. You could put in floors, but the developer could decide they don’t want those floor you put in. All the city has to do is a “make ready” or make it sellable. Which includes bringing up the building to code if it isn’t, cleaning it out and making sure the plumbing, electrical, foundation, etc will pass. That’s it.

    • john jay R. on August 29, 2013 at 7:02 pm

      “All the city has to do is a “make ready” or make it sellable. Which includes bringing up the building to code if it isn’t, cleaning it out and making sure the plumbing, electrical, foundation, etc will pass. That’s it.”

      Thank you for pointing this out.

      Honestly,how much money do you think it will cost just,JUST to bring it up to code?

      And in case you missed it,the building has been out of code for decades. Why the sudden interest in it all of a sudden?

  14. Paige Turner on August 29, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    (In case you missed it in today’s VMS, I took the liberty to copy and paste this message from Mayor Boswell, so that everyone can understand what is really going on.)

    Why Restoring the McKelvey Building is Important
    by Mayor Chris Boswell

    Improving the appearance of the community and enhancing economic vitality have been among my top goals since becoming mayor of Harlingen six years ago.
    Most citizens have supported these initiatives, and the city commissions with which I have served repeatedly have endorsed and devoted resources toward these ends.

    Restoring the nine story McKelvey Building to its historic role as a premiere business address in Harlingen is critical to both of those efforts. This restoration was identified as a goal in the Harlingen 100 Plan adopted by the City Commission in 2008.

    Since that time, city staff, elected officials, and members of the business community have worked hard – many on a volunteer basis – to create the unique opportunity where we now can acquire the property and begin restoration. Since its construction in 1927, the building on the southwest corner of Jackson and “A” streets has been the tallest in Harlingen. It was the tallest building in the entire Rio Grande Valley for more than 50 years.

    For decades, the building was the premiere office address for Valley doctors, dentists, lawyers and other professionals. Real estate and insurance companies had offices there, as did accountants and architects.

    Prior to the 1933 hurricane, KRGV-Radio the principal radio station between San Antonio and Mexico City broadcasted from a spacious studio on the top floor. Later photos show the call letters KGBS and KGBT on top of the building.

    The 38,000-square-foot structure first was called the Baxter Building. It was
    renamed the Rio Grande National Life Insurance Building in 1929. In the
    1960s it became known as the McKelvey Building, and more recently, Blaschka Tower. I prefer to call it the McKelvey Building, which is inscribed in the terrazzo in the lobby.

    Why is this building important? The McKelvey Building is the only building
    in Harlingen eligible for listing on the National Register of historic properties deemed worthy of preservation. The National Register is maintained
    by The National Park Service.

    “The building is an important local landmark, and reveals much about the pre-Depression aspirations for both the City of Harlingen and the developer,” said Greg Smith, National Register coordinator for the Texas Historical Commission. “The building would make an excellent candidate for rehabilitation, taking advantage of federal tax credits.”

    Great cities throughout this county and around the world work hard to protect and preserve their historic resources for future generations. Yet in
    Harlingen, many of the two-, three-, and five story buildings that epitomized
    the city’s dominant role as a center for business and industry gradually
    disappeared. And with them, one might argue, went some of our pride in the past, our confidence in the present and our optimism about the future.

    It is not only important but essential that we work to protect and preserve
    the few unique and iconic structures like the McKelvey Building that remain, and with it, rekindle the confidence and pride that are so vital to realizing the many successes of which we are capable.

    The City does not intend to own the McKelvey Building long-term. Rather, after acquisition, the City intends to package and market it – along with the one-story building at 203 W. Jackson – to outside parties who will redevelop the property in accordance with plans and goals set forth in our new Comprehensive Plan and Downtown Master Plan, which are now in development.

    This is in line with the “Twelve Steps to Revitalization” set forth in a 2005 Brookings Institution white paper on Downtown Revitalization.

    The City’s interest in acquiring these properties is to speed up the revitalization process. We may need to do some exterior and internal enhancements to make the property more attractive to a developer. But, as good stewards of the public trust, we want to minimize the amount of public
    funds invested in this property before it is returned to the tax rolls.

    Bringing this tarnished treasure back to life will bring new energy and new
    jobs to Harlingen and spur additional private investment in our Downtown. The McKelvey Building restoration is not a goal in and of itself. It is a vital component of our continued efforts to beautify and enhance our community, which goes hand-in-hand with true economic development. Making Harlingen an attractive place to live and raise our families also
    makes it more appealing to newcomers and investors.

    I commend the Harlingen Community Improvement Board, the Development Corporation of Harlingen, and the Harlingen City Commission for their leadership in acquiring this important property and the cooperative spirit in which they acted Tuesday. We can begin now to turn our biggest eyesore back into an asset.

    • john jay R. on August 29, 2013 at 7:15 pm

      You can dress up a pile of feces and spray perfume on it but you know what? It’s still stool.

      The mayor and his cronies can spew out all the propaganda they want but it is not going to change the FACT that this is a money pit period.

      Where was the mayor years ago when this eyesore was still an eyesore when he was on the city commission? Why the sudden interest? Crony support anyone?

      Why is it that those who VIOLATE CODE ENFORCEMENT can be served a lien if the property is not brought up to code but others are not forced to comply? WHY IS THAT?

      Why is this article being ignored?

      Official questions legality of Blaschka building swap plan
      http://www.valleymorningstar.com/news/local_news/article_2d45309c-1062-11e3-8bc4-0019bb30f31a.html

      One has to wonder why folks are harassed by code enforcement but some are given preferential treatment. Is there a form of favoritism here in Harlingen? NAH,not here in Ol’ Harlingen. Nothing of the sort,right?

      As usual something stinks to High Heaven in city government and politics.

      Oh,that’s right,it’s that dressed up piece of stool.

    • Red Barchetta on August 29, 2013 at 9:20 pm

      Well, there you go, a no-nonsense, sensible approach and explanation. We should all feel better now … At least those of us with half a brain and no political bullshit! Thanks Mayor Boswell and all involved. Good job!

    • Kenneth J. Benton on August 30, 2013 at 12:15 pm

      Ok, wrong way to go about it in my opinion, but let’s get it done right, cost effectively and with integrity for a change.

    • Fustrated Harlingenite on September 3, 2013 at 5:43 pm

      Biggest BS editorial by our elected mayor, Chris Boswell.

  15. john jay R. on August 29, 2013 at 7:45 pm

    Had to question some of this BS propaganda.

    “The City’s interest in acquiring these properties is to speed up the revitalization process. We may need to do some exterior and internal enhancements to make the property more attractive to a developer. But, as good stewards of the public trust, we want to minimize the amount of public
    funds invested in this property before it is returned to the tax rolls.”

    Is it me or have we seen this same song and dance before? What was it? Oh,that’s it. BP shop and we all know that is doing EXTREMELY WELL.

    “But, as good stewards of the public trust,” do I really have to go into how false this is?

    There is nothing public about anything this guy gets his hands on,it’s all about him and his cronies. As for TRUST,this clique’ of supposed Christians will have their day before GOD.

    “Bringing this tarnished treasure back to life will bring new energy and new
    jobs to Harlingen and spur additional private investment in our Downtown.”

    Just like the reese,those condos are just flying off into investors hands like hotcakes. People are just lining up to eat em’ up.

    Look people,if this guy REALLY WANTED TO HELP THE PUBLIC than why no effort to attract industry and manufacturing which would provide good paying jobs? Why such an emphasis on retail and ventures to profit special interest?

    Why did he not fight tooth and nail for the medical school to be set up here no matter what?

    Those of you with a Soul and who actually care where they will be going in the afterlife need to start standing up and spreading the word on how corrupted this town is. Knowing what is going on and not doing anything about it,is just as bad as participating in the SIN itself.

  16. Joe Rubio on August 30, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    Goober was very deceptive in this deal to the boards and the commission.$300,000 for the land swap ,about $480,000 for the facade,and now he adds a total amount of $1.5 million for the entire deal. The public notice was at $300,000 . The little La Plazita whores reside in this building with a bunch code enforcement violations. Goober can put up his own $1.5 million dollars and can assure himself that he can make a profit from his investments. Have his bank buy the building.

    • john jay on September 4, 2013 at 4:22 pm

      Excellent points and an idea that should be enforced upon the lying sack.

  17. john jay on September 4, 2013 at 4:26 pm

    Where are all the Goober supporters now? No rebuttal guys?

    Red Barchetta,Paige Turner,smalltownboy,yigal elohev and the other cheerleaders?

    Figures.

  18. mof on September 5, 2013 at 12:18 am

    New to getting informed about local politics….better late than never,…. I have attached a recent email which I sent to Commissioner Ulhorn along with his response…

    Recent Letter to city commissioner Ulhorn and response:

    >>>>>Response from Ulhorn
    Dear xxxxxxx:

    Thank your for contacting me with your concerns regarding the City of Harlingen’s involvement in the Blaschka Tower project. I have been contacted by many citizens who are opposed to the City’s involvement and have also been contacted by about an equal number who are in favor of the project. As an elected representative of the citizens of District 2, and all the citizens of Harlingen, I must ultimately do what I believe is in the best interest of the community.

    I appreciate your taking the time to contact me with your opinion on this issue. Although we may have different opinions about this specific project, I know that we both want to do what is best for Harlingen.

    Sincerely,

    Tudor G. Uhlhorn, Commissioner District 2
    City of Harlingen
    118 East Tyler Avenue
    Harlingen, Texas 78550

    Sent from my iPad

    On Sep 2, 2013, at 10:36 AM, xxxxxxxxxwrote:

    > Greetings Mr. Tuhlorn,
    >
    >
    > First, I would like to mention that I believe that Harlingen is a great town to live in. My father came here from Mexico in the 60′s and through my great grand fathers contacts, was able to obtain employment
    > with the City of Harlingen. He worked for the city of Harlingen for over 25 years, starting out in parks and recreation department and finishing out with the building and maintenance department. He had many opportunities to move out of this town
    > but he never did, believing in establishing his roots in one place. His work ethic is one that is hard to follow, but we have tried. He always believed in plan B. Always have a plan B. He is not a major real estate investor, but he has built a few rental properties in Harlingen which are his “plan B”, providing income for himself, and setting an example for me and siblings that a man with no education, with hard work and persistence can make something of himself.
    >
    > Now you are wondering why this long intro to the topic of Blaska Towers. I believe that opportunity is there for the taking when one sees it, But not at the expense of someone else. I remember hearing stories of the Blaska Towers. The story I heard was that the building was found unfit for occupancy a few years ago by the building inspector xxxxxx . Building was condemned ? and then later on was purchased by this inspectorxxxxxxx who had since retired. Is this true. and if it is , why did this purchaser not fix up the building in the first place. The question at hand is that the City of Harlingen is going to “foot the bill” for not only the “boot” that is deficit in this exchange, but at the same time we are going to foot the bill for the upgrade and maintenance of this building. I can only imagine the cost of bringing this building up to today’s code.
    >
    > I would like to know what business plan is in place that gives direction on how the City of Harlingen is going to benefit from this transaction. If Blaska towers is such a great investment, why hasn’t the private owner” Blaska” been approached by our local banks and offered investment loans for remodeling etc.
    >
    > This is my first letter to the a public official, and since you are the representing commissioner for my district, I am voicing my concern on this issue. Please pardon my ignorance on some the topics brought up, but as I read the newspaper and talk to some of my neighbors, who do attend the commissioner’s meetings, I get the feeling that some of those elected are not listening to their constituents.
    >
    > Thank you again and hope to hear from you. I thank you for taking on a duty as a public servant for the City of Harlingen.
    >
    > xxxxxxxxxxxx
    > Citizen of Harlingen Texas
    > Harlingen, Texas

    • john jay on September 5, 2013 at 7:10 pm

      WOW! What a great response and so informative with the answers to all your questions. I would not expect anything more from any of the commissioners.

      Just goes to show how much of a JOKE this guy really is.
      The only people that are for this BAD DEAL are the ones who are going to benefit from it and as usual the special interest here in Harlingen are the status quo.

      What a shame and a sham.

      To bad we don’t have a decent DA to go after all the crooked ass people here in Harlingen. It would be so nice to see these people behind bars.

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