Saturday, May 30, 2009

Rumors Erupt Around the Encinitas Chamber of Commerce


Prior to the Encinitas Chamber of Commerce rewriting their contract with the city, which was then approved (3-2), it was rumored that the Chamber was not manning the visitor center. TCN then reported, "According to city officials, the chamber violated the contract in several ways without giving notice to the council."

Recently, talk of multiple resignations on their Board of Directors has widened. It wasn't long ago that Gary Tucker resigned as the CEO of the Chamber. He had these parting words:

I do not have confidence in the current Executive Committee and it's newly appointed Treasurer to guide the Chamber through these challenging times. I am concerned with the Executive Committee's refusal to follow the By-Laws that govern the operation of our organization. Continued failure to do so could lead to the loss of our 501 ( c ) ( 6) IRS Non Profit status. After attempting for the past six months to impress upon the Executive Committee the seriousness of the declining Revenue from Renewing Members, Sponsors, and Events, I have seen no plan or any significant efforts to address this crucial matter.

Total Expenses were below Budget for 2007 and 2008. Labor and Operating Expenses have been reduced to the lowest possible level without sacrificing the quality of our Chamber and Visitor Center Operations. The last major Expense to be addressed is Rent, which can be reduced only by renegotiating the current lease or by moving to a more affordable location.

A couple days ago this email was sent to the city and city council. It has been circulating since then:

Letter to City Council from Keith Shillington:

Date: May 27, 2009 3:41:29 PM PDT
Subject: Visitors Center; Chamber of Commerce

Dear Madam Mayor, Councilpersons,

I had planned to join you this evening to make a public comment, and was just reminded of a previous engagement to attend live theatre. (Not that City Council meetings don't qualify as live theatre...)

Of note, on behalf of the people of the City of Encinitas, I wanted to advise that the City would be served by requesting a detailed accounting from the Chamber of Commerce to ensure that Visitor Center funds are being correctly appropriated to the assigned contractual tasks.

This morning I resigned my seat on the Chambers Board of Directors for a combination of reasons, many personal associated with the shocking loss we all suffered on Valentines day.

I don't [emphasis added] believe there to be any malfeasance or fiscal misappropriation, I do believe there to be some rather serious lacks of prudence and recordkeeping. The visitors center is important to
the business community of Encinitas, and needs to operate on a regular schedule with an informed staff. I truely hope that we, as a city, are able to accomplish this small feat.

If there is a mechanism to put words into the public comment without being physically present, here are the words I would ask to so be put:

--------quote
Good eveing Madam Mayor, Councilpersons,

On behalf of the people of the City of Encinitas, I advise that the City would be served by requesting a detailed accounting from the Chamber of Commerce to ensure that Visitor Center funds are being correctly appropriated to the assigned contractual tasks. I do not believe there to be any malfeasance or fiscal misappropriation, I do believe there to be some rather serious lacks of prudence and recordkeeping. The visitors center is important to the business community of Encinitas, and needs to operate on a regular schedule with an informed staff. I truely hope that we, as a city, are able to accomplish this small feat.

Thank you, and good evening.
--------endquote

There is a lot of maneuvering happening at the Chamber and motivations are cloudy. Given that taxpayer dollars are involved, I'd like to see the Chamber and the City address this issue. If the issue is substantiated, we should identify who is actually responsible and not let the wrong people be thrown under the bus.

36 comments:

  1. One thing for certain, were there is Mike Andrea...asshole.....there is corruption. that jackass should move to Vista.

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  2. Gary, Bob and Keith gone from the ECOC.....

    Sounds like the current board is working to make the ECOC a much better organization.

    Hail that, we need improvement with out all the drama queens.

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  3. I'm a business owner. Seriously, what good is a chamber of commerce? Why do we pay for this?

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  4. Leucadia tax payerMay 31, 2009 8:31 AM

    They are supposed to focus on bettering the business envirnment for all businesses within Encinitas.


    Whats funny is the ECOC is way off base with Mike Andreaashole who trys to sway the chamber too support his twisted sense of entitlement. Gary Fucker and Mike Andreasshole are focused on keeping the businesses environment in Leucadia the worst it could be. They are ass backwards with their thinking.

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  5. The chamber is used by the good old boy network. That is what it is good for.

    Need help with a Christmas parade? Call Andreen and Tucker and they'll run the political cover. Need help rezoning agricultural land to houses? Call Andreen and Tucker and they will help out and use the Chamber resources to do it. Need to send out fluff pieces on certain candidates? Call Andreen and Tucker they will help. Need to punish Leucadia for refusing a redevelopment agency? Call Andreen and Tucker.

    They will help if you keep them feed with taxpayer dollars. Oink Oink.

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  6. These two clowns, Tucker/Andreen, have managed in the past two years to blow up (very telling picture collage Kevin) one of the longest standing organizations in Encinitas. They padded their own pockets, Gary's salary jumped from 50k to 90k and Mike bilked the system all he could, while Rome burned. Near the end when Rome was crumbling, and after a failed coup attempt to oust the president, Gary walked.

    I feel sorry for the landlord who was doing a good civic minded thing by giving the chamber a reduced rent and now is getting hosed because of these two.

    Now, there is a email floating around that Mike, who bleeds the blood of the chamber because he loves it so much, has decided on his own alternative path to try to get the Executive Directors position.

    That's right folks, you heard it on this blog first. While the other several dozen candidates have gone through the application and interview process in hopes of being the next Chamber CEO, our true chamber champion Mike A, has decided on using threats and extortion has his path to the perch.

    Mike loves the chamber! he is professional (he reminds of that several times in the email, and he will start the New El Camino Real Chamber on June 1st and take the chambers newsletter, email list, and sundowners with him (he is delusional enough to think these are his possessions)to the new ECRC.

    Of course all this will go away if the Chamber Board of Directors agree to name Mike the new Executive Director of the Chamber by June 1st.

    I kid you not!!!!!



    hosing the city and the landlord, Bullying the board with threats and extortion, and disregarding the several dozen applicants who are competing for th job.

    I suppose that's one way to run a business.

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  7. Not to add to the pile but ok,

    I have heard this. Is it true that one of them cheats on his wife and the other just had his house foreclosed on?

    I think character is an important trait and the Chamber should seek that out when hiring a new E.D.

    J.P. have you thought of applying?

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  8. The Chamber's day is over - gone the way of VHS players. The US Chamber of Commerce is one of the most corrupt organizations in the nation - it is time to walk away from this at all levels. There are other ways to serve businesses directly without this historically tainted good ole' boys network.

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  9. I pity anyone who would take on the job of CEO.

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  10. If the ECOC was smart, the would part ways with Mike A. He is a little twurp and poison to anything he contacts. why would ECOC want anything associated with Mike A?

    Let him go to ECCOC, they will be a huge failure just like Mike A.

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  11. I think that Keith's letter should be considered by Council.

    Hey, it's easy to personalize this with ad hominem attacks behind the cover of anonymity. Why don't you post your name? Because you wouldn't want people calling you the names you are calling others? Your name calling and character assassination is a reflection on your own character, not those you target to attack.

    The books promptly need to be investigated, as Keith suggests:

    "a detailed accounting from the Chamber of Commerce to ensure that Visitor Center funds are being correctly appropriated to the assigned contractual tasks. I do not believe there to be any malfeasance or fiscal misappropriation, I do believe there to be some rather serious lacks of prudence and recordkeeping."

    When one focuses on rumors, here, and political infighting, then we will never get to the bottom of the questions raised.

    All of the candidates for Director should be considered. I feel that the City of Encinitas might be better off not subsidizing DEMA, the CHAMBER of Commerce, and Leucaida North 101 Association. Why are taxpayer funds used to enrich businesses over residents?

    There is a program in Lincoln, Nebraska, I know, where taxpayer funds are used, as matching grants, to help homeonwers improve their neighborhoods, for the benefit of the entire community.

    These could be similar to the facade grant program we had before. But it does feel like a few small businesses owners feel a huge sense of entitlement, yes like an "old boys" network. . .

    Why is it okay for Peder Norby to "pad his pocket" at taxpayer expense as 101 Czar, and Mike Andreen is continually demonized here?

    My face to face experience with Mike has been cordial. I know that he was friends with Bob Nanninga; Bob had a wide diversity of friends.

    Rhetoric and hyperbole do nothing to investigate the facts.

    Mike Andreen is welcome to start another chamber. If they cannot be supported by the business community, then they should not rely on the City, now in a squeeze for ever increasing operating expenses, to foot their relocation bills, to a place that is not as affordable as the one that they left.

    The previous Visitor's Center, in the old Smart & Final Center, had easy freeway access, egress, and no parking problems. We spent nearly $100,000 of the General Fund to move the Chamber, and we subsidize its rent every year. And the previous volunteers wanted to "stay put." Now we hear they were "let go?" That shows poor management, to me, when the volunteers are not appreciated and honored.

    Hey, no one is subsidizing my house payments, or my property tax, or my ever increasing water and sewer taxes . . . Power corrupts. By its City subsidies and political "connections," probably with developers as well as Council candidates, the Chamber apparently was becoming lax in its internal accounting and its noticing to the City.

    Perhaps the Chamber was acting like the INDEPENDENT agency that it could and should be, answering only to visitors, business owners and to the law relevant to accounting practices required by tax free organizations. Also, any tax free entity should be accountable to the volunteers that do the real work, in this case serving by encouraging visitors to enjoy our fine community.

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  12. What's up with Keith turning on the chamber? I thought he was on the same page with Gary and Mike.

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  13. Who says that Keith has turned on Mike. This might be part of "operation andreen". Mission- take control of the chamber.

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  14. Thanks, Maggie and your minion for your venomous attacks and comments. I really expected more of you.

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  15. Lynn and Mike birds of a feather....

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  16. Still posting your anonymous slams?

    You want to demonize anyone who recognizes that most residents and many or most businesses do not favor five roundabouts and narrowing all the lanes on Historic North Hwy. 101, cutting down to only one lane, northbound.

    That unwanted alternative would put more traffic on Vulcan and Neptune. It would encroach on some businesses. It would give a few longtime commercial property owners more parking at the expense of all the taxpayers.

    We know what your agenda is. That you are too cowardly to post your name only reflects on your own lack of courage and integrity.

    I said, very clearly, that I do NOT feel that the City should subsidize businesses through DEMA, the Chamber, or through the North 101 "Mainstreet" Association, now headed up by Charlie Marvin.

    Marvin and his buddy Morgan Mallory now HATE Mike Andreen, because he got, and publicized, through Encinitas First, a count on the surveys we took at City Hall, at the last workshop, where over 60% of those filling out the questionnaires did NOT favor five roundabouts in two miles and only one lane going northbound on Old Hwy. 101 through Leucadia.

    Also, Mike Andreen, through the Chamber has pointed out that Sub Palace and Leucadia Glass owners have now collected over 1000 signatures against roundabouts and the plan to take away one lane to increase parking for a few, who bought knowing the parking limitations, and paid less, accordingly.

    We do want a walkable Leucadia, and the sidewalks are a good start. More of the money going to consultants should go directly to planting the median and restoring, preserving and maintaining the canopy.

    I felt like the Chamber was better off where it was. After the move, apparently, the rent went up, and the volunteers were "let go" and replaced.

    However, I would like everyone to feel welcome to post on this blog, not just those with a pro roundabout agenda.

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  17. Lynn,

    I have read all the previous post on this chamber blow up issue and did not find the roundabout mentioned once either pro or con.

    It's twisted logic to link your opposition to the roundabouts and the fratricide going on at chamber.

    save it for an upcoming streetscape topic.

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  18. Lynn
    You do not seem to have read the petition of what has been going on, but that does not stop your erronious rants.

    from the past, still true

    The same issues that were identified many years ago have been identified by the hundreds of individuals who have gotten involved with the public input on our Streetscape.
    We have been waiting too many years for the improvements we deserve.
    Don't let the biased, misleading and untrue information spread by petitions, a couple of individuals and the Encinitas Chamber of Commerce slow or stop the process of polishing our gem and creating a safe, business and pedestrian friendly environment that we and our decedents can enjoy and be proud of.

    Dear Chamber of Commerce of Encinitas.

    Mike Andreen is making the entire Chamber look very unsupportive to the improvements along N.Hwy 101.
    His comments are filled with untruth and bias statements.
    He depicts the desires of the community to improve the unsafe
    unpedistrian friendly and to create a better business environment as an affront to downtown. Would downtown be safe and prosperous if cars whizzed by the bossiness at 50mph? If there were no sidewalks? Your Chamber representative says the Streetscape is driven by a few property owners. Again, Not True.
    He states the Chamber saved the day.
    Not True. The Chamber was invited six months ago to have input in the planning. The Chamber choose to not get involved at that time and did not even respond to the invitation. And now, with out appearing to know the facts and what caring community have been offering, seems to want to kill the improvements needed along
    N.Hyw 101.
    Hey, Encinitas Chamber Members, do you all want to stop the improvement plans for our area?
    If this is what you feel, then I and others will do what we can to publicize the fallacious comments the E Chamber is offering through your representatives and your unsupportive business stance.
    You are being justly defined as the Chamber of Anti-Commerce because of your false, bias, mean spirited statements by YOUR REPRESENTATIVE Mike Andreen.
    I will be forwarding all your representative's comments on this blog and in your publications and see what the the press, the public and the city feels about what roll the E Chamber is playing to unjustly impede positive progress.
    November 15, 2008 8:36 AM

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  19. Mike A and Lynn - Bad for Encinitas.

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  20. I just have a few questions. I do know it to be true, but am really puzzled as to why the Chamber did not involve themselves in the first two streetscape workshops. I also can't figure out why they have nothing to do with the coming Beach Cruiser bus, that the Cardiff COC, North 101 Association, and DEMA have sponsored. Is the coast out of the Encinitas Chamber's scope sometimes? Can Lynn or any ECOC board members let us know? Thanks.

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  21. Love the picture it says it all.

    What a shame for the chamber. I hope a stronger and more community oriented, pro business as opposed to pro politics Chamber emerges.

    last poster I agree. The activities I can think of and I am missing a few I am sure, are:

    beach bus
    artwalk
    poetry slams
    clean and green
    farmers market
    leucadia nights
    classic cars on 101
    5ks and and bike races
    taste of mainstreet
    street fairs and parades
    surf contest
    historic preservation, boathouses
    dog days in cardiff events
    environment day at cottonwood creek environmental day in Cardiff
    environmental film festival
    art walks
    art banners and auction
    kringel mingle

    all happening along the coast.
    none sponsored by the old chamber.

    Encinitas is rich in activities and events.

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  22. This is where your tax money goes,
    to bickering politicos!


    (it rhymes)

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  23. For once Lynn changed my mind.

    I am no longer for legalizing Marijuana.

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  24. 9:36
    That was very funny

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  25. "There is a program in Lincoln, Nebraska, I know, where taxpayer funds are used, as matching grants, to help homeonwers improve their neighborhoods, for the benefit of the entire community."

    Lets start a program to collect some money and buy Lynn's home and raze it to build a pocket park. We could then buy her a nice pad in Vista and a one way bus ticket.

    That program would be a huge improvement for Leucadia. Her and Mike could be neighbors if the program is a success.

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  26. What is it with you guys and Lynn? She is One person and has the right, as we all do, to post on this blog as long as J.P. let's us. (Oh the power J.P.!) It is sad, when we are all attempting to do what is right for our amazing City, to keep trashing Lynn. Can't you just let it go? If you don't like her posts, don't read them, and please say something that will help this mess the State and City have found themselves in. Thank you.

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  27. Lynn has the right to not read the posts that explain that she should think first then type.

    Lynn also has the right to stay on topic.

    Lynn also has the right to not say that she is the voice of Leucadia.

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  28. Dr. Lorri-

    Catch a clue. Lynn reaps what she sowes.

    she promotes misinformation all the time and lies constantly.

    Why should we cut her any slack. Is she special? I should rephrase that, Is she special in a sense that she needs special protection against free speach?

    In my opinion, Lynn is bad for Enginitas and Leucadia.

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  29. Dr. Lorri-

    Catch a clue. Lynn reaps what she sowes.

    she promotes misinformation all the time and lies constantly.

    Why should we cut her any slack. Is she special? I should rephrase that, Is she special in a sense that she needs special protection against free speach?

    In my opinion, Lynn is bad for Enginitas and Leucadia.

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  30. Lynn has a right to say that one side of the railroad tracks is "ugly", but will she tell us which side she meant? No.

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  31. Dear Dr. Lorri-

    You don't see other people get slammed like Lynn, because Lynn throws BS out and repeats her points with no new information over and over again.

    Anyone that posts can and will have others comment on their posts. Thats what makes a blog a Blog.

    Have a good one, Dr. Lorri

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  32. So Lynn
    You are not in favor of safe bike lanes, restoring the tree canopy on the east side, slowing the speed and increasing the traffic flow or creating parking oppertunities for all businesses and visitors.

    If you feel that these issues ares important, what is your plan for the streetscape and how will it deal with these issues that have been identified by those who cared enough to go to the workshops?
    The petition, you so frequently refer to, states all the trees will be cut down, Leucadia Blvd will end at the tracks, beach access will be blocked and private property will be take by the city, among other untruths. And this is what the anti chamber backed and invited those on the chamber email list to try to halt the progress with their misinformation invitation. The polling results you refer to at the last workshop were influenced by 160 people who had not attended any workshops and were told thing like the above and that this plan would, impede poeple from going downtown".
    Those who have informed themselves of the issues,gone to the workshops and digested the options are far more supportive of the solutions that have been thoughtfully offered.
    The petition and the chambers misinformation efforts slowed the process and cost the city,(us), a lot of money, time and energy.
    Please explain your alternative solution to accomplish the goals that the public has identified.

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  33. 5:17
    Lynn may not answer your questions. But I believe all your points are sound.

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  34. Dear Lynn-

    Right about now would be a really good time for an apology to Encinitas and especially Leucadia for misrepresenting yourself as a “voice for Leucadia”. You are clearly not our voice.

    Peace out,

    Leucadia Home Owner

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  35. Enough of the Vista stuff. You make it out that Vista is a bad place. Just becuase we have darker skin here does not mean its a bad place. Being that I have been around both sides It seems you are not seeing the other sides but sticking to your own little words. As to why the Chamber is not doing events on the coast or sponsered the bus. The groups on the coast have it wrapped up. Why step on their feet and compete with those gruops. As for this whole page it is clear it is slightly if not fully on the view of those on the coast. There has always been a divided city with all the groups at each others throuts. And I thought when Bob, Keith, Maggie and a few others came into thier various places that was all stoping but I see that it has not. If anything it got more brutal. Maybe its becuase we all are older now. When I was a part of the stuff there it was nice to see the gruops mixing and letting each do there own thing. I was happy to be a part of all the groups. But not now I would not support any of them. They all only want thier own agendas and everyone that opposes them must be evil. I have seen some on here that are original thinkers, but most are robots repeating what the others have said in sound bites. I would encourage them to really see how all of this will effect them personally and not what the vocal minority is saying. By the way yes I do think something fishy was up with Gary and the Chamber. But they always seemed to have some problems there at the chamber. Maybe they need to have the same members on the board longer like the other groups do. Maybe even have a rep from each on the board. On that note with all these complaints does anyone have a real solution to the differances or is everyone stuck on wanting what they want and will not budge. And no going to Vista or half way is not a solution.

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  36. 2:13-

    Sleep more, post less.

    You make no sense.

    ReplyDelete

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