Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Belmont Failure: LAUSD's Risky Scheme

Los Angeles, CA—4/30/04 Scott Wildman, former Chair of the California Joint Legislative Audit Committee whose reveals how the Los Angeles Unified School District evaded environmental laws on commercial developments by promoting the Belmont Learning Center as a “Joint Use” project. “Our report fairly clearly demonstrated that the real goal of the school construction project during that period of time was NOT to build schools. It was to try to generate more money for the District. “There were seven projects like this in LAUSD and none of them—NONE OF THEM have ever generated very much money for the District. And ALL of these project essentially failed.”

The Wildman interview is set to air world-wide on the Internet 24 hours a day, 7 days a week starting on Thursday, June 24, 2004 on the STREAMING page at http://www.fulldisclosure.net The first 30 days the program will be provided to viewers FREE as a public service and thereafter available online in the program catalog. The program will also be featured on and on 40 cable systems throughout California for the next six months.

Wildman told Full Disclosure “you have to realize that school districts were not accustomed to swimming with sharks, with developers, and in many cases developers were able to sell them a bill of goods which actually cost the districts money instead of generating the kind of money they had anticipated.

Full Disclosure host Leslie Dutton has been conducting a series of interviews entitled “BELMONT: The World's Most Expensive High School". Costs to date for the development are $175 million, which was financed in 1997 with non-voter approved, tax-exempt bonds known as Certificates of Participation (COP's). The Los Angeles Unified School Board has already approved an additional $110 million for remediation of environment hazards on the Belmont campus, which was built on top of one thousand closed oil wells and is plagued with methane gas and other toxic substances. On Tuesday, June 22nd the school board approved the project’s environmental impact report, paving the way for the project to be completed.

You can view this program and other Belmont programs at our website at http://www.fulldisclosure.net/via media streaming media. A cable channel guide with airtimes is available on the website.

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