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Sunday, July 09, 2017

City of Salisbury Goes Corporate Raider?

By Thornton Crowe

"If you're not inside, you're outside..." -- Gordon Gekko

Sounds about right doesn't it, especially when you look at the massive undervalued real estate the City has let go to drinking buddies over the last decade or so. $5K and a cocktail can buy you a nice chunk of property in Downtown Salisbury as we saw with the sale of the Feldman's building -- hence, making our corrupt little hamlet and an even more sketchier place to be. 

At around the time of the old Firehouse sale, a quieter building sale occurred, involving another $5K firesale nearby. As you will see from SDAT record, this building was also purchased by Devreco, LLC in 2013 from the Wicomico 91 AF & AM Lodge (the former Freemasons' headquarters). 

Mind you, this office building is estimated at $133.6K value, sporting 3,024 sq. feet. right across the street from the government buildings. (Just a bit too obvious!) It leads one to wonder, given its close proximity to the courthouses, didn't some enterprising attorney pick this $5K gem up and rent out space to his/her legal eagle friends?  

It really does beg the questions of how one goes about scoring one of these sweet deals and does everyone have the same luxury of buying high dollar real estate in Salisbury at bargain basement pricing?

Getting back to the firehouse fire sale...

From many discussions with Salisbury News editor, Joe Albero, it seems the City is rather selective about whom they offer these blue light flash sale pricing. For example, he put in a bid to purchase the old Firehouse, which stood vacant for well over two years, for $200K+ and the offer was flatly rejected. Yet, the City opted to sell it for well under his offer ($85K). A nice price considering this is yet another historic structure built in 1920, sporting 7,680 sq. ft. 



The explanation given to Albero for said rejection was, it was to be used for entertainment/art purposes. Hmm, didn't I hear something recently about the Daily Times moving in once Headquarters Live closes? So much for that dandy entertainment clause unless you consider fake news pimping some form of pulp fiction entertainment.

Both were bought by Devreco, LLC so it would seem this outfit has a special enough relationship to warrant these basement acquisitions where virtually all others potential buyers are locked out for one reason or another. Word to the wise: If you're looking for free market, folks, downtown is not a good venue of choice because both properties, like Feldman's, could've commanded much more than received - even as former (or current) asbestos jungles and mold death traps.

"It's a zero-sum game: somebody wins, somebody loses..." -- Gordon Gekko
 So just whose losing on this real estate heist by the City?

You can just bet you do, of course! Salisbury's City government has chosen to sell you down the unswimmable river for less than even a song. And for what? All because they drink with these future buyers? Just being a fellow barstool warmers hardly constitutes a thorough explanation of this fodder, but what other could it be?

"Money is never made or spent, it's merely transferred -- and that's the reality behind the illusion..." -- Gordon Gekko
Could there be there's a deeper plot afoot with these cheap pricing gimmicks? Why hasn't voters demanded answers from the former Mayor and City Council members (present and former)? Does local government still hold some backroom interest in these properties that's kept off-the-books and out of public sight?

This holds all the trademarks of some quasi-Gekko insider trading while citizens are taking big smash mouth hits, covering negative margin calls while the City sits back, smelling like a rose in spite of the putrid stench of corruption.

As pro corporate raiders, government types are always grossly inept and way too obvious. The art of subterfuge is simply lost on them! Therefore, maybe they should spend less time trying to be Gordon Gekko and start spending more time serving the people who elected them!

35 comments:

Anonymous said...

Demand answers? Because we always get some cock and bull story just like Joe Albero got when they wouldn't sell him the firehouse. That was just and out and out lie but because they didn't like Joe and what he could have accomplished, they told him a lie and just plain would not sell him the building for much more money. Your first quote by Gordon Gekko is absolutely correct, If you're not inside, you're outside. I live in Salisbury, but truthfully I would not want to be inside with this bunch of crooks. Do I like what they are doing to Salisbury?? A great big No, but who, just who, can stop them? It is not just city government. It's county also. John Cannon has no more business sitting as President of that council than I do. Yet, who voted him as President, the rest of the council. You pat me on my back, I'll pat you on you back kind of system going on around here and the stuff needs to stop. Drinking buddies for sure. Too bad they all can't get drunk and fall into the crappy river!!

Anonymous said...

These local yocals are too much. They think they're so sophisticated and they end up look like morons when they do stupid crap like this. It is obvious and it makes us look like a bunch of amateurs. What are they planning to do with that building across from the courthouse? Another empty downtown store front?

JoeAlbero said...

Interesting how Barrie Tilghman and her Husband are now partners in the old Parker Place building on the Plaza. A run down building with a leaking roof, yet no one from the City ever inspects it for structural damage or mold.

Simply stroll down the Plaza and stand in front of numerous buildings like Vernon Powell and take a good sniff. You'll smell the overwhelming odor of mold like there's no tomorrow. Heck, you can see the mold growing off the exterior of the building. WMDT stinks to high heaven too.

If I were a guessing man I'd say that the good ol' boys are laughing all the way to the bank. They want this area depressed. They want to pick up properties for literally chump change in the hope that when and if our federal government funds and finances downtown construction and the property values go up, they'll hit a home run and move to Florida.

Until you get a decent Mayor and Council in office, nothing is going to change. On that note, have a great Sunday.

Anonymous said...

At least section 8 in that building will be right across the street because that crowd is always in and out of court trying to collect child support from deadbeat parents. This gives me easier access to the system they already jack on a daily basis.

Anonymous said...

Joe you're right the WMDT building is horrible. Surprised the people working there aren't habitually sick from the mold. It has a horrible smell and you can smell it from outside. You wouldn't catch me dead in that mold infested building. When will WMDT be required to clean up and reno that building? Looks like Day's too interested in jacking up rent 250% around Salisbury then actually do something about things that demand immediate attention!

Anonymous said...

Everyone scamming off everyone else. Its a vicious cycle for sure.

Anonymous said...

Yes , keep chipping at this rock Mr. Crow , it will crumble as I've said before. The government in Salisbury is NOT for the people or by the people . It is for the politics at hand and needs to be taken apart . I've seen this going on for years and it's sickening . There are some nice properties in the town for sale , having said that I cannot bring myself to purchase any of them with the present crooked political environment . We have a good chance of change with Trump in charge at the top , with people like Albero and Crowe working at this level maybe they can meet in the middle . Another good post as usual! Wayne

Anonymous said...

Why doesn't Jake take that $38 grand he just gave his buddy Tilghman and decontaminate the MDT building? Why would there need to be a raise for the city attorney? Today is day 2 of the illegal budget in enforcement.

Beezer said...

The SBYnews readers have read this before - and I will say it again. The Mayoral election was the People's to lose. And in retrospect - the People lost BIG TIME! I've known Joe Albero for a long time and I can honestly say this, if Joe had been Mayor, Salisbury would now have been transformed on the national map and renown for its economic prosperity. Knowing his energy level he would have transformed Salisbury to an thriving economic metropolis - unlike anything you could possibly imagine. Instead, you now have sheriff sales, set-up financial real estate arrangements (cherry-picked), crime, rape, thief, and one of the lowest net per capita incomes in the entire state.

On a positive note - Salisbury now has an authenticate news source (SBYnews) - unlike times past whereby all the news was fabricated or FAKE.

Anonymous said...

Why aren't codes enforced for the buildings downtown? Why doesn't someone in the City sue? Thankfully, I don't live in Salisbury. It seems the City is bringing down the County. Why isn't the County putting more pressure on the City to do better?

Anonymous said...

The 8 years of the obama administration have brain washed the young , I didn't think it would have the same effect on the older ones . Having said that , I wonder how old Jake Day is , maybe 25 , so he too has been brain washed.

JoeAlbero said...

Beezer, that is very kind of you to say.

If I had been elected there is no doubt in my mind things would be much different today. Mind you, I would have been dealing with a 100% Liberal Council, so it would have been very difficult to get them to put my plans on the agenda and it would have been 4 miserable years of exposing my ideas to the public and the public going nuts watching a council shut them down, one after the other.

Ladies & Gentlemen, this is how they control everything. We once had a great Council with Debbie, Terry and Tim. You need to run for office and get these bums out. Take back your City or watch it continue to crumble for you and excel for them.

Anonymous said...

In the late 70's and 80's, the city of Baltimore did a project like this in the blighted areas in south Baltimore. They condemned properties and gave them away for a dollar if the buyers promised to rehab them. I'm not sure if Day and Co are trying to do the same, since it was so tremendously successful in SoBo

Anonymous said...

The population in the bury is comprised of their leaders and mostly Serfs ( the low class social class ) who must love the leaders. They keep electing these social directors who make their life miserable , why?

Thornton Crowe said...

ANON 9:34AM:
First, if you recall the Baltimore project accurately, those were residential rowhouses NOT commercial buildings. Furthermore, owners of those $1 rowhouses were required to spend an additional $100K (min) within a two-year period (big money then) to rehab, working within a quasi-HOA guideline for their historic preservation. Additionally, they had to be owner-occupied, not rentals open to the general public. How do I know this? I looked into buying a couple with the hopes of merging them.

Conversely, commercial space has a whole different dynamic than residential doesn't. As any commercial realtor will tell you, these dynamics tend to be more stringent and cost prohibitive for the average weekend fixer-upper Home Depot warrior. In some cases, there's also is a guaranteed occupancy on finished projects with set deadlines in place for said occupancy to begin; apparently, these two properties appear to have - as well as the Feldman's building.

Second, you're giving Day & Company way too much credit where it's unwarranted. Day didn't broker those sales, Ireton did. Note: Day wasn't mayor until November 2015. Both sales occurred in September/December 2013. Additionally, it can be a way to churn property (like stock) for large returns - at the taxpayers' expense in the end.

Of course, we won't know anything until someone has the guts to come forth and spill the beans on the inner-workings of the deal. Assuredly, I shant be holding my breath for that to happen in the near future - especially without a court order involved in it somehow.

Anonymous said...

Salisburians aren't that sophisticated to understand half of what the Wall Street movie meant. Even the Eddie Murphy comedy Trading Places would leave them completely mystified because they don't know how money or the market works.

Sorry Crowe, you're talking way above all their pay grades - including the morons at city hall and the slumlords elites. This is just how they run the numbers without any background. You should've used a more understandable film like Dumb and Dumber so they could relate. PJM

Anonymous said...

Going to enforce a fence ordinance but allow slumlords and good ole boys to do as they please,sure is one corrupt town.

Anonymous said...

It is a good thing you didn't buy, TC, they were a bloodbath on depreciation once O'Malley screwed Baltimore up royally. One of my cousins bought one and had it redone really nice but ended up selling for way under expected value because his area turned bad during his run as Mayor.

Anonymous said...

Jake is too busy counting chain-linked fencing within the city limits to be worried about being some corporate crusher. He doesn't have the brains to do that. The man can't even price out a construction project properly e.g. Main Street tear-up. He's plum for the picking for anyone who's remotely shrewd enough to exploit his naivete. He'd be too easy to be interesting for anyone with real knowledge of how to work complicated deals. smh

Anonymous said...

From all I've seen about the city administration, I'm glad I'm on the outside. Who has time for all this BS? Those people are criminals begging the Attorney General to come in arrest them.

Anonymous said...

CNN is the worse news outlet , however they did get one thing right when they said that the voters are stupid , Salisbury and Wicomico county included.

Anonymous said...

Are the Freemasons still meeting in the downtown lodge that was sold?

Anonymous said...

If you watch HGTV you would see everybody ends up spending over budget on construction projects or renovations. You just never know what expenses you will run into when you cannot see what needs to be done beforehand. Nobody was aware of how contaminated that soil was until they started digging. Anyway engineers came up with the plan. Mr Day don't have the expertise to do engineers work so it makes no sense to blame him

Anonymous said...

250
Good question.
The so-called "Good Ole Boys" are Masons.
They meet in private and make decisions away from prying eyes.
Everything is done hush hush and that is why everybody scratches their head and wonder what just happened.
Wake up folks.
It is like this in every town in America.
The local Masons run the town and the elections.
That is the way the world works.

Anonymous said...

2:58, Is your best argument really "if you watch HGTV you would see"???? This is the mentality that is running this town?? Get real!! I deal with RFPs, bids, and government contracts all the time. There is always a clause built in to darn near every single one that has penalities for the winning bid for not finishing on time and caps as to what (if anything) they will pay above and beyond the bid price. You are crazy if you think there's any logical explanation as to why this project is an ongoing disasters.

Anonymous said...

Thornton, you've more than scratched the surface. You're getting close! Keep digging.

Anonymous said...

Shouldn't they have had the soil tested as part of determining the scope of the project? Knowing that there was a gas station there once should have required this. They will call it a learning experience.

I Threw Up My Lemonade When I Saw This On Your Blog! said...

The line from Wall Street that also fits this town is when Bud asks Gordon why he's wrecking Blue Star and his answer is: "Because it's wreckable." That fits Salisbury to a T. No doubt Day & Co. are trying their damnedest to wreck Salisbury. Could it be there's an ulterior motive like maybe trying to get governmental grant money once the town goes south enough. All his buddies could then parachute out with that money, dump the properties and head to Florida. They can wash their hands and show a profit. How can you not show a profit if you let the government buy back at a subprime but well over $5,000. Bam profit. It would make sense.

Anonymous said...

I would look in to who really owns devreco . My money says Jake day is an owner.

Anonymous said...

9:12
The county is too busy bringing down the county to worry about the city. One is no better than the other.
Both are being run by a bunch of inept good ole boys without a clue.

Anonymous said...

I believe Devreco is owned by a relative of Palmer Gillis or Gilkerson. That's what I was told from a secretary at the Gillis office.

Anonymous said...

Who ever said we aren't smart enough to get the Wall Street and GG references is obviously a snob...
"I don't throw darts at a board. I bet on sure things. Read Sun-tzu, The Art of War. Every battle is won before it is ever fought."

Anonymous said...

More of the good ole boys talk?

Yep. That's what they are. Good Ole Boys.
Nothing serious or scary here.
Just good ole boys.
Nothing nefarious about B1Ask1.
El Diablo my friends.
Hook 'em Longhorns.

Anonymous said...

i have watched the good ole boy network get preferential treatment on sales of property.You have gilkerson gilliss and John cannon and they have more that work together to ge property dirt cheap also if a building downtown needs work ,the bids most like go to Gilkerson.

Anonymous said...

You people are so full of hate and envy you cannot see straight or even come close to getting the facts correct.