Geopolitical means actions like China moving in to annex Tibet, Israel moving in to annex Palestine, the Taliban moving in to replace government control in Afghanistan. All of the strategies used in these modern geopolitical movements come from the playbook of the greatest takeover artists in history.....the Roman Empire. In each case the idea is to move into the area you want to take power incrementally. You first cut off its resources as the world is doing to Iran now making the existing government unable to perform its duties.....increasing public discontent. You then move your people in as NGOs to offer to fill that vacancy making yourself seen as a protector of the people...think Taliban or Hamas. So you become the benefactor, the legal system, and the educator as the existing government is forced to watch as they no longer have the ability to provide. In Tibet, the Chinese imported the Han people to do this, in Israel it is the 'settlers', and in Baltimore it is the affluent class. The strategies are all the same. THE PROBLEM WITH THIS IS THAT NONE OF IT IS DEMOCRATIC, IT DOESN'T WORK IN FIRST WORLD COUNTRIES BECAUSE IT NEGATES THE RULE OF LAW THAT ALREADY EXISTS, AND THE PROCESS NECESSARILY INVOLVES ENRICHING ONE GROUP OVER ANOTHER TO MOVE THE DEVELOPMENT FORWARD. So what we are seeing locally in the US is the use of third world development tactics on first world communities. That is why you see this disregard of Rule of Law and open fraud....it is why your local media simply repeat what the powers say and no longer report what the interests of the people would be......it is why your local development is staffed with NGO people so development goes as planned....and it is why people say it feels like a third world country....don't like that Royal Farms or Wall Mart......don't like that school or rec center closing or that lost playground or charter schools. Blame it on geopolitics! THESE 1% DON'T LOOK AT THE US AS A COUNTRY, THEY ARE SEEING IT AS PERSONAL TERRITORY.
It is important to remember that all this is politics and we still live in a country were, hard as they have made it, we can still vote people out and vote our people into office. THAT IS WHY I HAVE MADE IT MY MANTRA. WE CAN TURN THIS AROUND.
VOTE YOUR INCUMBENT OUT!!!!
COME OUT TO SEE WHO IS REPRESENTING YOUR PUBLIC INTEREST ON THE BOARD OF THIS NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATION.
BALTIMORE DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION
THE NEXT MEETING IS THURSDAY, AUGUST 23 AT 7:30 23 S. Charles St. 17th fl. BE THERE!!!
I ASKED MS WALSH TO PURSUE AN ARTICLE THAT USED MARYLAND AS AN EXAMPLE OF HOW STATES ARE IGNORING THE MUNICIPAL BOND FRAUD AND EXPANDING BOND LEVERAGE AS FAST AS THEY CAN. MARYLAND POLITICIANS ARE LOOKING TO CREATE AS MUCH FRAUD POTENTIAL FOR WALL STREET AS THEY CAN AS THEY DID WITH THE LAST MASSIVE FRAUD. O'MALLEY CONNECTED MUCH OF THE MUNICIPAL BOND MARKET TO COMPLEX FINANCIAL INSTRUMENTS (CODE FOR ILLEGAL/FRAUD) FOR WHICH TAXPAYERS ARE RECEIVING PENNIES ON THE DOLLAR BACK IN SETTLEMENTS FROM ALL BANKS WITH WHICH THEY STILL DO BUSINESS. RAWLINGS-BLAKE HAS CITY BONDS CONNECTED TO MORE OF THE SAME AND THE SCHOOL BOND ISSUE IS ALL THE SAME. THESE POLITICIANS ARE NOT ONLY IGNORING A SYSTEMIC WALL STREET FRAUD, THEY ARE DOUBLING DOWN ON OUR CITY'S BONDS. THIS FAILURE TO ACKNOWLEDGE THE CRIMINAL ELEMENT AND THE BLATANT CONTINUING EXPOSURE AT PUBLIC RISK SHOWS THE PUBLIC DOES NOT CONTROL THEIR OWN GOVERNMENT. IT IS WORKING FOR WALL STREET (1%) INTEREST.
Municipal Bond Rule Mired in Legislative Limbo
By MARY WILLIAMS WALSH Published: August 13, 2012
Financial reform was supposed to help protect local taxpayers from getting burned by municipal bond deals. But a measure that would require municipal bond advisers to put the interests of taxpayers first has been bogged down in a rule-making quagmire in Washington for nearly two years.
What’s more, a House bill, sponsored by Representative Robert J. Dold, Republican of Illinois, would eliminate the measure.
As part of the wide-ranging regulatory changes that followed the financial crisis of 2008, the Dodd-Frank Act included a provision that would make municipal advisers “fiduciaries,” meaning they must show an undivided loyalty to the communities that hire them, putting local residents’ interests ahead of their own.
That’s a much higher standard than the one for the banks that underwrite municipal bonds. The law in that case takes for granted that underwriters are looking out for their own interests in bond deals, and requires only that they deal fairly and not mislead.
Making advisers fiduciaries would be “the first time in the history of the securities laws that issuers of the securities have been protected,” said Robert W. Doty, president of AGFS, a consulting firm in Sacramento. He is a registered municipal adviser and favors the fiduciary mandate. But before that provision can take effect, the law calls for the Securities and Exchange Commission to define “municipal adviser.”
The S.E.C. proposed a definition 20 months ago, but it was swiftly beaten back by the banking, brokerage and engineering industries, among others. Opponents argued that the S.E.C. was overreaching and that they were already regulated and should not be given a new mandate.
In addition to serving as fiduciaries, municipal advisers would have to register with the commission, meet professional standards and allow periodic inspections. As fiduciaries, they would have to speak out when they see something amiss, even if it means going against powerful political forces and financial incentives.
Mr. Dold’s bill, introduced last summer, now has 35 other sponsors from both parties. In addition to ending the fiduciary mandate, it would exclude banks and other financial institutions from being deemed municipal advisers, even though bankers often do advise municipalities. A group of engineers that provide cost-benefit studies for municipal energy projects, typically financed with bonds, has also been calling for its members to be excluded.
“As a small-business owner, I believe that it is important to correct a problem when it becomes apparent,” Mr. Dold, who represents a district north of Chicago, said in announcing his bill. “While the Dodd-Frank Act had good intentions, the broad scope under which it was written brings unintended consequences,” like delays and higher costs. The jockeying over the measure continued as it was reported out of a subcommittee just before the recess in July, and the wrangling is expected to continue in September. Mr. Dold has said the fiduciary mandate could stay in the law if everyone agreed that it applied only to “actual municipal advisers, defined as Congress intended,” but so far there is no such agreement.
The Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board, the municipal bond underwriters’ watchdog, is flexing its muscles after getting a new mandate from Dodd-Frank to keep an eye out for local taxpayers. When it was created 37 years ago, its only mandate was to protect the investors who buy municipal bonds.
In May, the board expanded its existing fair-dealing rule, requiring underwriters to make sure local officials understand the risks of complex bond deals, and to disclose any incentives they may have for supporting certain transactions.
But those changes barely squeaked by the S.E.C., which must approve the rule-making board’s actions. Two of the five commissioners, Daniel M. Gallagher and Troy A. Paredes, issued an unusual dissent, saying the board had not done enough to make sure the benefits of the expanded rules were worth the cost, which could be borne by local taxpayers
The need to protect residents from borrowing debacles is coming increasingly into focus, as fiscal distress mounts in many communities. In some cases, poorly structured bond deals are a big part of the problem.
Jacquelyn Martin/Associated Press Robert Dold, sponsor of a bill that would eliminate the rule.
“What has happened to the taxpayer is just atrocious,” said John Stoffa, the county executive of Northampton County, in rural eastern Pennsylvania, which just paid Bank of America $27 million to get out of a bond-related contract that a previous county government entered in 2004. That’s more than the county’s annual spending on social services to youth, children and families.
But Northampton County got off easy compared to places like Jefferson County, Ala., where imprudent bond deals figured in the biggest municipal bankruptcy in United States history, and Harrisburg, Pa., which is now in receivership.
The bonds in those places, and many others, involved derivatives that were supposed to lower the communities’ borrowing costs. But the financial crisis of 2008, and the low interest rates that followed it, have changed the underlying math, forcing communities to pay more interest than expected over the remaining life of their bonds. In some cases the bonds no longer exist, but the derivative contracts are still running, costing local residents money year after year.
The S.E.C. says no comprehensive data exists on how many municipalities have been caught with such contracts, or how much they are paying.
“This has gotten much worse over the past year,” said Craig Underwood, president of Bond Logistix L.L.C., an advisory firm that works with state and local governments. He said that last year, some of his client communities had been thinking about whether to get out of their derivatives contracts by making a large payment to a bank, the way Northampton County did. But while they hesitated, interest rates fell even lower, and now they can no longer afford the termination fees.
Had there been a fiduciary mandate a decade ago, the riskiest bond deals might not have been struck at all. And on the transactions that did go forward, a qualified municipal adviser might have taken the time to renegotiate better terms and pricing, said Andrew Kalotay, a debt-management specialist now serving on the committee that is helping draft educational requirements for municipal advisers.
“It pains me to see what’s going on,” said Mr. Kalotay.
What often happened instead was this. A trusted banker told local officials they could save money by adding derivatives to their bonds, then recommended other companies to work on the deal for contingency fees. The officials focused on the ostensible savings, without stopping to consider that none of their advisers would be paid unless the deal went through — however unsound or overpriced it might be.
“Without the fiduciary duty, tens of thousands of local governments, hundreds of thousands of local officials, and hundreds of millions of local taxpayers and ratepayers would be at significant risk, as they have been in the past,” said Mr. Doty, the adviser from Sacramento.
WHAT WE SEE BELOW IS THE PLAN THAT DR. ALONZO PUT FORWARD AS A SCHOOL CONSTRUCTION MODEL FOR BALTIMORE. YOU SEE IT IS JUST A COPY OF WHAT WAS DONE IN SOUTH CAROLINA SOME YEARS AGO. WHAT THIS DOES IS COMMIT TAXPAYER MONEY TO A PRIVATE PROJECT FOR 30 YEARS, THIS AS WE SEE A PUSH TO PRIVATIZE PUBLIC EDUCATION. SO, WE WOULD SEE YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF PUBLIC MONEY PAYING FOR PRIVATE INFRASTRUCTURE. THIS WILL BRING HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS TO THE BANKS. MORE IMPORTANTLY, IT TAKES THE PUBLIC'S ABILITY TO CONTROL ITS OWN COMMUNITY SCHOOLS AND THIS IS BEING DONE DELIBERATELY. THIS IS HOW NGOs THE WORLD OVER TRAP LOCAL ECONOMIES AND TAKE AWAY SOVEREIGN CONTROL......IT IS THE SAME ON A LOCAL LEVEL.
I HAVE A BETTER IDEA.......WHAT IF ATTORNEY GENERAL GANSLER SIMPLY WORKED TO GET THE $800 BILLION IN MORTGAGE FRAUD SETTLEMENT MONEY FROM THESE SAME BANKS, BILLIONS TO COME TO MARYLAND ALONE, AND PAY CASH FOR THE PROJECT?
PLEASE TAKE TIME TO READ A BORING SET OF ARTICLES......IT IS CRITICAL TO UNDERSTAND WHAT IS HAPPENING IN BALTIMORE!
Greenville’s Model Could Mean $1 Billion for School Construction in Baltimore Now!
This Campaign calls upon elected officials and decision makers at
the local, state, and federal levels to adopt and act upon a funding
plan to renovate and modernize all public school buildings in
Baltimore City within 8 years.
NOTE THAT TRANSFORM BALTIMORE ARE THE SAME COALITION OF ORGANIZATIONS AS BALTIMORE EDUCATION COALITION. A PARTNERSHIP OF THE PRIVATE NON-PROFITS, CHARTER SCHOOLS, AND JOHNS HOPKINS.
Transform Baltimore - Build Schools. Build Neighborhoods
✦ A Partnership Organization is needed to borrow a large sum
of money up front so that a large scale construction program
can be implemented.
✦ A “63--‐20”corporation, like Greenville’, could be formed to sells
bonds or borrow large amounts of money from a financial institution.
Alternatively, other institutions like the Maryland Health and Higher
Educational Facilities Authority (MHHEFA), could also be used to
borrow money up--‐front.
✦ The size of Baltimore City Public Schools’ annual funding for
improving school facilities will determine how much could be
borrowed for school construction.
✦ The amount that the Partnership Organization can borrow is
also determined by the length of time the loan must be paid back.
✦ The current payback period on government debt is15 years.
Extending the payback period to 30 years will allow for increased
borrowing, just like a home mortgage.
Dedicating Existing Revenue
✦ Baltimore City Public Schools needs a consistent revenue stream
annually to pay back debt, so that bondholders and banks are
confident that the loan will be repaid.
✦ Existing Revenue that is already alloted for school construction
in Balimore City can be used to borrow large sums of money.
✦ Current annual funding for improving city school buildings varies
slightly each year averaging approximately $60 million in total in recent years; $45 million per year from the state and $15 million
from the city.
✦ State and city legislation is needed to ensure that this funding
remains consistent over 30 years.
✦ Like Greenville, Baltimore City Public School’s Partnership
Organization could borrow about $1 billion up front for school
✦The city school system would then use its $60 million in existing
revenue as annual installments, each year to pay back the debt
over a period of 30 years.
THIS IS THE PROJECT ALONZO WANTS TO COPY......
finance & labor PROGRESSIVE PROJECT DELIVERY Innovative Financial Plan Pushes Greenville Schools Ahead Construction program languished until district found nonprofit catalyst 11/13/2006 By E. Michael Powers
The Greenville, S.C., school board struggled for 10 years to find a means to pay for a much-needed construction program that would build or expand 70 different school buildings. Realizing its effort was going nowhere, the board advertised for a construction manager that could offer a creative solution. It found one, locally, when a group of business executives formed their own firm to attack the financial problem and partnered with New York City-based construction manager Faithful + Gould for construction expertise.
Institutional Resources, Greenville, found a way to finance a $1-billion deal, avoid the state’s debt restrictions and provide comprehensive construction management services. The program is on schedule for a 2008 completion, after only 5 years of operation.
Financing was the biggest hurdle for the program because tax rates had tripled recently and South Carolina has a constitutional debt limit for public entities of 8% of holdings, says school board member William Herlong. Institutional Resources won the bid with its financing plan that utilized a third-party holding corporation to circumvent the debt rules.
Financial plan is similar to that of a mortgage agreement with a bank. The nonprofit company, dubbed Building Equity Sooner for Tomorrow (BEST), is classified by the Internal Revenue Service as a 60-23 corporation, which means that it exists and must function solely to support the school district, says Bob Hughes, chairman of Institutional Resources. BEST is run by a board composed of five members, all appointed by the school board. BEST contracted New York City-based UBS to underwrite $999 million in bonds that it issued for construction of new schools, using projected usage figures as collateral.
“We proved that the school district will always need the schools, that the schools would all be completed, and that it would be very unlikely that the [board] would be able to get equal quality schools for a lower payment,” says Hughes. Those factors allowed BEST to receive an excellent bond rating that made its interest rates comparable to what a school district would expect to pay
WHAT WE SAW WITH THE GAMBLING BILL WAS JUST THIS SORT OF CAPTURE OF PUBLIC PARTICIPATION IN THE PROCESS. AS THIS ARTICLE POINTS OUT, A COMMISSION CREATED BY THE GOVERNOR WILL DO THE GOVERNOR'S BIDDING. WHAT YOU DON'T HEAR VERY MUCH IS THAT THIS NEWLY PASSED BILL WILL MOVE GAMBLING ISSUES TO JUST SUCH A COMMISSION....YOU HEARD IT ON PAID ADVERTIZING, BUT NOT ON MAINSTREAM MEDIA. THINK OF THIS BGE ISSUE WITH SERVICE AND RATES......ALL THAT IS HANDLED BY A COMMISSION THAT WORKS FOR INDUSTRY AND NOT PEOPLE......THAT IS WHAT THIS GAMING COMMISSION WILL DO. THESE COMMISSIONS ACT TO CIRCUMVENT THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS.
THIS IS ELIMINATING REPRESENTATIONAL GOVERNMENT!!!
Gambling commission named, special session planned for July
By Pamela Wood | Capital Gazette
Posted: Tuesday, May 22, 2012 9:22 am | Updated: 11:25 am, Wed May 23, 2012.
Get ready, yet another special session of the General Assembly — this one to discuss gambling — is likely coming the week of July 9.
Gov. Martin O’Malley, House Speaker Michael E. Busch, D-Annapolis, and Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr., D-Calvert, appointed an 11-member committee on Monday night to explore gambling expansion in Maryland.
The committee will meet twice in June, with the goal of drafting gambling legislation for a July special session.
The committee — officially called the “Work Group to Consider Gaming Expansion” — is made up of Democrats and O’Malley associates. The members are:
- Chairman John Morton III, a businessman and Naval Academy graduate who heads the Maryland Stadium Authority.
- Matthew Gallagher, O’Malley’s chief of staff.
- Budget Secretary T. Eloise Foster.
- Appointments Secretary Jeanne Hitchcock.
- Joseph Bryce, O’Malley’s chief lobbyist.
- Sen. Edward Kasemeyer, D-Howard.
- Sen. Nathaniel McFadden, D-Baltimore.
- Sen. Richard Madaleno, D-Montgomery.
- Del. Sheila Hixson, D-Montgomery.
- Del. Peter Hammen, D-Baltimore.
- Del. Frank Turner, D-Howard.
- Sen. Douglas J.J. Peters, D-Prince George’s.
- Sen. George Edwards, R-Western Maryland.
- Sen. Rob Garagiola, D-Montgomery.
- Del. Dereck Davis, D-Prince George’s.
- Del. Bob Costa, R-Deale.
- Del. Eric Luedtke, D-Montgomery.
Costa said he wasn’t surprised to see the committee filled mostly with Democrats. That’s always the case in Maryland, he said.
“I’m just happy they did put some Republicans on there,” said Costa, the lone Anne Arundel representative involved with the committee.
Del. Ron George, an Arnold Republican who leads Anne Arundel’s delegates, said the gambling committee is a waste of time, because the governor has packed it with yes men.
“It’s just to put a rubber stamp on what he wants,” George said.
When lawmakers adjourned their regular 90-day General Assembly session in April, they left behind a proposal to expand gambling in the state.
The proposal, pushed by Miller, would have given voters the option this fall of voting on a new casino in Prince George’s County — likely at the National Harbor development — and allowing table games at all of the state’s casinos, including the Maryland Live! slot machine parlor at Arundel Mills that’s scheduled to open on June 6.
George said he doesn’t think there’s support among Anne Arundel’s lawmakers for table games or for allowing another casino in Prince George’s County, which may lure customers away from Arundel Mills.
“We’re going to stab them in the back by cutting into the area they’ll draw from” if a Prince George’s casino is approved, George said.
Maryland Live! developer David Cordish of the Cordish Cos. said last week at a gambling convention that he thinks politicians are approving too many casinos and risk oversaturating the market.
“They think you can have casinos like Starbucks,” Cordish said at the East Coast Gaming Congress on Thursday, according to the Associated Press.
In addition to the soon-to-open Maryland Live! casino, slots are already in operation at Hollywood Casino in Cecil County and at Ocean Downs near Ocean City. Voters have approved slots parlors for Baltimore City and at Rocky Gap in Western Maryland that have not yet opened.
In a statement issued Monday night, O’Malley said the work group’s “expertise and guidance will help us move forward toward consensus on this issue.”
Work group meetings are planned for 10 a.m. on June 12 and 1 p.m. on June 20