Showing posts with label Main Street. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Main Street. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Gloucester, VA Public Library Debate Over Leasing's High Costs

Public libraries are a key element in promoting literacy and intellect, building a community and providing free and open access to a vast amount of information the public would otherwise face challenge and expense in obtaining. Gloucestercurrently has two public libraries where the community may access only a small portion of information actually available. The quantity of information contained in public libraries is highly dependent on local community financial investment. Upon glancing at the amount of money Gloucester annually invests in our public libraries, it is evident their importance to the community is realized by our elected leaders. Unfortunately upon a closer look at how the money is actually spent it becomes clearly evident the taxpayers are getting very little return on their investment. In fact, we are throwing away several million dollars to lease library spaces instead of owning them.
This year the Board of Supervisors (BOS) budgeted $996,982 to operate our two public libraries. $577,630 is for salaries and benefits and $253,226 for rent, leaving only $166,126 for library operations. The larger of our two libraries is located in the MainStreet Center and owned by the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust (GMSPT). Rental of this 24,000 square foot library space initially began in 2004 for a period of 10 years, with four five year renewal options for up to a total of 30 years. The BOS renewed the lease for five more years in 2013 which became effective in 2014. This year we will pay the GMSPT approximately $190,000 in lease associated payments to rent the library and among other things, to pay 23% of the property tax charged on the entire Main Street Center. Our second library, located in the York River Crossing Shopping Center, is rented to Gloucester under a similar lease agreement. This year the People will pay approximately $63,000 in lease associated payments for this 3,916 square ft. library space.
Should Gloucester continue leasing the Main Street library for the full 30 years, the taxpayers will have paid the GMSPT close to $6 million in rent. A new 24,000 square foot library constructed at $2.50 per square ft. would cost the taxpayers approximately $6 million and would convert the annual rent obligation from $190,000, to an annual library capital improvement fund contribution of approximately $50,000; rendering an eventual annual savings of at least $140,000. Similar, but smaller scale results could also be realized by constructing a second library instead of continuing to rent. Over the years Gloucester’s administration and elected leaders have made some deals and decisions that have proven to be contrary to the long term financial interests of the overall community. Just think, if the earlier decision makers had truly acted in the community’s best interest, they would have built a new library and the benefits and savings of such would be enjoyed financially stress free today. Unfortunately, we now appear to be locked into a carefully designed financial cycle that will be very hard to break without a significant cash windfall, as we currently cannot afford to rent and build a new library at the same time. The current BOS has an obligation to address this issue and initiate a process that will result in construction of the larger of two new libraries within the next six years, with construction of a satellite branch beginning not far behind. Hopefully the current BOS becomes the Board that did what was best for the entire Gloucester community; otherwise we will just keep paying more for library rent than for information quantity and quality.
Kenneth E. Hogge, Sr.

Friday, October 10, 2014

GMSA and GMSPT Have Created GRLF Revolving Loan Fund, Watch Your Investment Disappear?

The folks who run the Gloucester Main Street Association and the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust have developed a new way to get at potential business investors money.  It's called the GLFR, or Gloucester Revolving Loan Fund.  All hail BAAL for that.  These folks want you to invest in the dead area of Gloucester Main street.  A place with minimal parking at best, where the sidewalks barely meet residential standards, never mind commercial standards and there are areas considered potentially dangerous to pedestrians as the slopes on the sidewalks do not meet specs based on our research.  

  This is an area that has a lot of new business turnover as most people can not make a go of it here.  One must ask why.  Simple, no parking and no chance of ever attracting an anchor business.  An anchor business is pretty much a large retailer that has the capability of attracting large amounts of traffic into it's store and all the other stores in the area will hopefully benefit from the extra traffic in the area by offering complimentary goods and or services not carried by the anchor store.

  Not to take anything away from the well established businesses on Main Street, there are some wonderful shops there if you do not mind the lack of parking and poor pedestrian walkways throughout the area.  But look at what has been built in the area over the past decade and you will see that the only thing that might prove viable is senior service providers and if the population does go up with seniors, then maybe one candy store can make it in this environment.  I would not bank on anything else.  

  What also tickles our funny bone about the statements coming out of the Main Street Preservation Trust is their commitment to preserving main street.  Take a look at the present structures around the area and explain to us where preservation exists.  Look at the rents for the area and they are way to high for such poor traffic.  Most of the businesses that went out of business all complained of no customers or not enough customers to support the business.  

  So you want to go broke trying to make money on Main Street?  There are much better options and at better prices in other areas of the county where you are more likely to get traffic into your business.  If you listen to the hype these folks want to sell you, it all sounds rosy.  Your best bet is to walk the entire Main street area for one day and talk to present business owners and actually pay attention to everything you see.  You may save yourself a fortune and much heart ache.  Just be careful around these folks who want to give you such nice loans, they can sell ice to an Eskimo and water to fish.  And they can make everything very easy and handle all the paper work for you.  Just don't miss any payments even after you have gone belly up and have nothing left.  Isn't that just great news?

Link to all the wonderful news.  All hail BAAL!  And you even get to bow before the great BAAL when entering their office at their wonderful BAAL shopping center on Main Street.  Where our public library is as well.  That's just so special how they thought of all these wonderful ideas ahead of time.  Just remember, anyone after your money is going to be very helpful and offer more than you ever expected, that is until all your money is gone.  Then you get to see they are not sheep.  And you thought they were as gentle as lambs?

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Decoding The Gloucester Main Street Shopping Center Symbols

In the picture above, we see the Main Street Office.  This is located at the Gloucester Main Street Shopping Center.  Where the Gloucester Main Street Library is located.  Just above the Main Street Office name on the building is a round circle with a cross in the middle of a white background.  What does it mean?  Well we asked the folks who own the shopping center, specifically, Jenny Crittenden, who is the executive director.  The answer we got back was that the design means nothing and is not associated with anything.  Well to us that means one of two issues.  One, she is possibly lying.  Two, she really has no idea.

  In all fairness, we do not think she was lying to us.  It is our opinion that she really does not know what the symbols used throughout the shopping center and by the Gloucester Main Street Association mean.  So what does that emblem mean?  Well so far we have compiled 6 pages of facts as to the meaning of this symbol.  The main clues is to realize that Gloucester, and specifically, Main Street, has a very large and old history of Masonry.  One of the oldest lodges in the nation is found right on Main Street.  Lodge number 7 to be exact.

  Symbols have meaning in a town like this.  We are going to give you the Masonic meaning of the symbol as well as other meanings.  We will leave it all up to you as to whether or not you think the symbol or design has any meaning at all.  In Freemasonry, it is the symbol of Baal.


 A Hebrew or Canaanitish name, signifying lord.  The phoenicians or Sidonians who went to Judea to build Solomon's Temple carried with them the mysteries of Baal represented by the sun, and many of the decorations of the temple referred to his system of worship.  The sun was a significant symbol of the Tyrian architects, and also of the Druids, as it is now of the Masonic Brotherhood.

(Baal:  Meaning in Masonic lore from; "A Dictionary of Freemasonry, by Robert Macoy.  Gramercy Books, Publication Date; Unknown").

Other names and histories of the above symbol is the sun wheel and the solar wheel.  Just about all representing the sun.  It is used in Celtic, Pagan, Hedonist, Satanic, Luciferian, Wiccan, Catholic and other occult as well as religious theories and thoughts.

Isn't it striking how this above picture taken from a site on the Internet that shows the cross of Baal is so similar to the symbol used at the Gloucester Main Street Shopping center?

Now let's look at what is above the cross of Ball at the Main Street Shopping Center Main Office.  Well that looks like a pyramid or capstone.  And then there are the pyramid light fixtures.  But hey, it's just a design coincidence, right?  The Masonic order does not use Egyptian symbols now do they?  Nah, they are just loaded with it at every level and we would have to write a book here to to show you all of it.  So let's just say it reeks of Masonic symbols.

The main sign at the Gloucester Main Street Center or Shopping Center.  Oh, look, a little lamppost in the center of a circle.  What could that mean?  It could very well be illumination.  Let's study illumination for a moment shall we?

  What is illumination?  False Light?  Let's look at this concept for a moment.

Spiritual or intellectual enlightenment.
synonyms: enlightenment, insight, understanding,awareness;
learning, education, edification
"it was an era of great illumination"

Now here is a very serious secret that you will need to read very carefully and closely.  Illumination only comes from the dark.  You can only be enlightened from the dark.  It is very limited light.  In the dark, when illumination occurs, it is only able to take place in a small field.  

  Again, pay very close attention here.  Hold off on your illumination and wait for the light of day.  The light of day paints a much larger picture that you just can not get from illumination.  Under illumination, the darkness still persists around it.  In the light of day, there is no darkness.

Here is an example;  It is interesting to note that when Christianity was introduced to Rome, the Roman empire crumbled.  (Illumination).  The phrase just given is correct.  However, let's now put that same information before the light of day.

Rome was already in a major state of decay when Christianity was being introduced.  The Pagan's of the period fought the Christians tooth and nail in every area of thought.  As the Pagan's prevailed, Rome crumbled before them.  
(Light of day information).  

Illumination often leads those who seek information to the wrong conclusions.  It's not that the information was incorrect, it was just highly limited.  You just didn't get the full story.  

Under illumination, you get a limited picture of the entire scope of things.  Here is what is coming at you let's say.

Now here is the same picture, only with the full light of day.  Here is what is really coming at you.  That is a very different view, but both are correct.  It's the same picture.  Just one is illuminated and the other is the light of day. 

So the next time someone seeks to illuminate you, you can thank them for the information, but hold off on it and wait to see what the light of day says about that information.  Illumination is a very crafty fellow.

Now, the owners of the Main Street Center here in Gloucester are the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust.  Let's look at a few more of their symbols.

Above is a screenshot from their main website and we use this under fair use laws of the United States for this news story.  Look to the left hand side of their name.  A pretty 5 patterned emblem.  Does it have any meaning?  Nah, it can't.  Besides, it's just to cute.  Let's look a little closer anyway.

Oh look.  It's a pentagram.  A 5 pointed star in a circle.  Invisible at first glance.   But it just has to be a coincidence.  

Oh wait, there is still more.  Inside that yellow circle is an 8 pointed star.  The 8 pointed star by the way is perfectly designed inside that area and made as two square boxes put together.  Under certain mystery schools, this is the symbol of the goddess Venus.  The goddess of Love.  How magical.  So we have the goddess of love in the center of a pentagram.  Now that really is magical.  

  In an area steeped in Masonic tradition, to tell us that these design elements have no meaning and are just design creations, one has to be pretty far out on another planet to buy that.  But hey, it's still possible.  There sure seems to be a lot of coincidences here now don't ya think?

  To be as fair as possible, most people in the Masonic order are on lower levels of the order.  Most can not nor will not progress to the top levels as their own faiths and or belief systems just will not allow them to.   They are never told that they are being blocked for these reasons either.  It is the ones at or near the very top of the order that you really need to question what they are up to as they seek to illuminate so many.

Gloucester County Library at the Gloucester Main Street Center.  Become illuminated.  

Enhanced by Zemanta

Monday, January 27, 2014

Gloucester, VA Main Street Ice Hazards, January, 2014

A week after our first major snowfall, we went for a walk through the Gloucester, Main Street District and were shocked to find that many of the sidewalks were never cleared from snow and ice from the winter storm we had a week ago.  The sidewalks throughout the business district were not only a disgrace, they were down and outright dangerous to walk over.  Above you can see a series of pictures we took of area conditions.

  Several major shockers we found were one site that did not clear ice and snow from their sidewalks was one of the Insurance companies, Prudential and Blue Cross Blue Shield rep office on Main Street and the other big one was out in front of the Cook Foundation at the old Coke building.  The Cook foundation is a part of the Gloucester Main Street Association and the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust along with Attorney Hicks in the same building.

  Both the Gloucester Main Street Association and the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust are always trying to promote Gloucester Main Street and here they are not even taking care of such basics as cleaning their own sidewalks.  That is a disgrace.

  What was even worse.  We ran into several contractors measuring the sidewalks and streets as the State and Federal Government are putting money into paving the Main Street come this spring or summer.  Their own take on the area sidewalks?  Too narrow, littered with lightposts in the walkway, the pitch in some area were above grade making walking for anyone with a handicap, potentially very dangerous and they questioned the clearances for wheelchairs.  (We did tell them that we measured these last year and they barely passed). We did not even have to point these issues out to them in the least.  They already saw it.

  In Washington, DC shop owners had 24 hours from the time of snowfall to clear the sidewalks in front of their businesses or get fined.  Is it the policy of the county to just let shoppers fall and get hurt and just sue the businesses as an overall policy.  What a great public relations effect that will have.  People want businesses to come to the Main Street District but don't worry, you won't have to work to get customers, none will come with this kind of nonsense.  

Enhanced by Zemanta

Gloucester, VA Animal Control Costs Still At About $600.00 Per Incarcerated Doggie

On January 6th, 2014 we did a  story on the outrageous costs we are paying here in the county for Animal Control and how it is costing us about $600.00 per doggie or kitty caught, which takes about two days per animal, and compared that to how one can call an ambulance to save a life at an average cost of about $400.00.

The above is an internal link to that story here on this site.

Here are the latest figures from the county as reported in the Gloucester Mathews Gazette Journal.  We have to get the information from them because the Animal Control department seems incapable of keeping it's own figures up to date on their web page.  The last entry they have is from 2011.

  The month of December, 2013, calls were down from last year, 237 for 2013 compared to 300 the year before.  43 lost dogs were reported, 41 general inquiries, 37 residents responding to correspondence, 35 stray dogs 13 cruelty cases, (May have been filed against one owner of anywhere from 1 to 6 animals), and 11 cat cases.  What these numbers say?  Nothing other than the secretary answered some phone calls and letters in between filing...... her nails.  It says nothing about how many calls Animal Control officers responded to.  Gee, was this by design?

  The only definitive information that was in the story was that Animal Control officers racked up a hefty 67.5 hours of overtime for the month by going out after hours during the week and calls on the weekend.  This we can only imagine that a good bit of it is above their monthly budgeted payroll plan.  We have to assume that there is some money held in the budget for OT for nights and weekend calls.

  This department is already obviously heavily bloated with way too much personnel that has shown over and over again to not even be capable of following it's own ordinances they are supposed to enforce.  The latest is Animal Control Officer Jeff Stihlman driving down Main Street while playing with his cell phone.  Was he texting?  This was early this morning, January 27th, 2014.  If the county is not looking to cut this department substantially, then we have a serious suggestion for at least ensuring that there will by no further OT expenses.

  There are 3 full time Animal Control officers and one part time Animal Control officer along with one full time secretary.  Why are these people all working a first shift, Monday through Friday if there are calls being answered during the weekday evenings and also on weekends?  Why not run multiple shifts and also incorporate a weekend shift?  This gets rid of the potential for the ridiculous overtime these folks like to rack up.  Put the keystone cops, err.....Animal Control officers to work in a much improved working environment for serving the county if we are going to keep this bloated expense to the taxpayers.  $600.00 per doggie caught and incarcerated?  Really?  The county can't do better than that?

  $400.00 to save a life but $600.00 to put a doggie in doggie jail and it takes two days per doggie?    $600.00 per animal handled for November, 2013 and about the same for December, 2013.  $600.00.  Can anyone think of anything better to do with $600.00?  How much food would that put on your table?  How much gas would that buy?  For some, $600.00 pays their mortgage.  $600.00 would pay a good amount of bills that keep piling up.  How much dog food would $600.00 buy?  How much cat food would $600.00 buy?  Come on folks, these people are costing us all a small fortune and for what?  We do not need these bloated costs and no human lives are being saved?
Enhanced by Zemanta

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust Assets Located

Digging through public records we have the information regarding the real estate listed on the 2011 tax forms of the Main Street Gloucester Preservation Trust also known as the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust.  The following is what we have dug up from public records.

  This is the majority of the property we believe to be under the Trust.  So what we see is that the Trust receives payments from Gloucester County under a lease agreement for space used by the public library.  Your tax dollars funding a part of the secret shadow government infiltrating Gloucester county government.  Gloucester County pays out about 20 thousand dollars a month for leased space in both locations in the county as found on the county's own yearly budget information.  The Main Street location being much larger of the two, we are sure that the majority of the lease payments under the 20 thousand goes to the GMSPT, a non profit, Trust,  fraternity according to their own records.

The library shopping center on Main Street
Map#          Last Name        First Name     RPC    Land Value   Improvements   Value
32A2(9)-1A GREGORY YVONNE          33565  $500.00            $0.00         $104,500.00
32A2(9)-2A GREGORY YVONNE          41228 $1,023,200    $255,100       $1,278,300
32A2(9)-2A THE MAIN ST. TRUST        41227      00             $1,201,500    $1,201,500
32A2(9)-3A GREGORY YVONNE          41229 $10,600          $0.00             $10,600

Map              Last Name        First Name     RPC    Land Value   Improvements   Value
32A2(9)-2A GREGORY YVONNE            41228 $1,023,200    $255,100       $1,278,300
32A2(9)-2A THE MAIN ST. TRUST          41227     00             $1,201,500    $1,201,500
32A2(9)-3A GREGORY YVONNE            41229  $10,600          $0.00             $10,600
32A2(1)BK A-3A THE MAIN ST. TRUST 42949  $58,500          $0.00              $58,500
32A2(1)BK A-3G THE MAIN ST TRUST 13876   $760,600      $2,459,000      $3,219,600
32A2(1)BK A-3J THE MAIN ST TRUST   42950    $22,000         $0.00            $22,000
32A2(12)-1 THE MAIN STREET TRUST  35133   $1,800            $0.00              $1,800
 -Map 32A2(9)-2A is the parking lot area of the library, health dept., etc.
-Map 32A2(1)BK A-3A is a corner lot located in proximity to the grass area between Main Street and the library
-Map 32A2(1)BK A-3G is the property the buildings sits on. The property is much larger than the building.
-Map 32A2(1)BK A-3J is a property behind the meeting place building
-Map 32A2(12)-1 is a very narrow property between Map 32A2(1)BK A-3A and Main Street.

The above numbers would seem to agree with yesterday's posting information and tax returns information.  The link on yesterday's post shows 2012 figures but no tax returns.  The above figures are right in line with 2012's information.

  So the income for the trust, from what we can gather, comes in the form of lease payments from the ownership of the property known as the Gloucester Main Street Shopping Center.  This is the same property that they depreciated over 1.7 million dollars on for 2011 as seen in their tax form filing.  How they did that we have no idea.  How they get away with not following what other business owners must now follow thanks to the GMSPT involvement with the county is also highly questionable.  How is it that they have not been forced to tear up their parking lot to put in flower beds?  

  Also, according to the 2011 tax form from the Main Street Gloucester Preservation Trust, they did not pay out any grant money to any businesses.  So where did the money come from that the local paper keeps reporting that the GMSPT has awarded?  State or Federal funds that the GMSPT brokered on behalf of those local businesses and take credit for?  We don't know and there is no way to tell.  The 2011 tax form left it blank where the GMSPT or the MSGPT is supposed to show grants held and then paid out.

  Does anyone find this suspicious?  And we want these people promoting Gloucester why?  Are they pocketing fees for brokering services and farming those jobs to themselves through their own businesses not shown to be in connection with them?  Legal fees to Ingles law firm maybe?  Again, we do not know.  We can only ask the questions based on what we see.  According to the GMSPT website, they seem to be brokering commercial real estate.  We have no problem with them brokering real estate unless of course they are collecting extra fees and sending business to certain buddies of the GMSPT and they are the only ones who can handle the business.  Even then it may be okay as long as they are not purposely playing interested parties and milking extra fees from them.  But again, there is where questions come into play.  Are certain people using the GMSPT as a front for other activities?  As a non profit Trust fraternity that has no other source of income other than real estate lease payments, it looks very strange at best.

  And why does a Gloucester County Board of Supervisor need to sit on the Board of this organization?  Again, based on what we see, there is no real reason for that.  And we must continue to ask, why is this Trust Fraternity so interested in making plans that affect taxpayers and businesses within the county?  They are not a charitable corporation like others in other areas are.  So again, this makes no sense.  You have to ask a lot of questions based on the public information of this and it's sister organizations, The Gloucester Main Street Association, supported in part by the GMSPT, and the Cook Foundation.  The folks who brought us the Beehives that polluted the county landscape then the landfills.

  Anyone know how that Beehive deal worked?  We found out.  Here was the deal as it was explained to us.  You had to buy the Beehive and decorate it yourself  at your expense.  You then had to give it back to the Cook Foundation once it was decorated.  If you wanted it back, you had to pay for it again.  No joke.  They pulled that off and had those Beehives everywhere for a year.  But hey, it was for charity.  Who's benefit is the question however.  You can still buy the Beehive posters at the county Welcome Center located in the historic Courthouse Circle, if you are so inclined though.  A reminder of those fun times and the landfill deposits.  

This is an inverted image of one of those Beehives mentioned above.  They were about 4 feet tall if memory serves correctly.  There were hundreds of them around the county and now there are hundreds of them in the local landfill still waiting to decay.  How green was that move?   
Enhanced by Zemanta