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Venice Update

News of Venice, CA and Marina del Rey CA

Safran to Refurbish Building for $900K Plus Per Unit on VA Property

By Ryan Thompson, a concerned citizen

Yesterday morning, Curbed LA reported Los Angeles City Council unanimously voted to provide an additional $24,300,000 in homeless housing bonds to “repurpose a building (207) on the Veterans Affairs campus in West Los Angeles for housing for veterans.” As reported, the completed would provide 59 units of permanent supportive housing for homeless and chronically homeless senior Veterans.”

https://la.curbed.com/2019/10/24/20927147/west-la-veterans-affairs-homeless-housing

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1yda2BlYLzDd-PUyLSp1dgfQcCU4M5UG_/view?usp=sharing

The article refers to the West Los Angeles Veterans Collective as the developers of the project. The article reports that, according to that Collective, the project previously received $8,200,000 in LA City Measure HHH Bonds and $5,750,000 in funds from LA County. Total funding for the Project to date purportedly finance 70% of its total budget.

If the foregoing amounts, units and total funding status are accurate, the developer’s budget is $54,642,857.14, or a $926,150.12 per unit cost. This is the cost to remodel an existing building owned by the Federal Government that is legally mandated to house disabled Veterans?

The Greater Los Angeles VA has an annual operating budget well over a billion dollars.

Although the article reports, or at least infers the West Los Angeles Veterans Collective is the developer of the project; at the very least, it’s not the developer receiving the funds.

That developer is VA Building 207 LP, a company formed by Thomas Safran of Thomas Safran Associates in March 2019.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1plKqRiTnkiKIvAE9-llidgjoDmA8yPcM/view?usp=sharing

Records of the Veterans and Community Oversight and Engagement Board indicate Century Housing Corporation may no longer be involved with the project, if not also U.S. Vets.

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1REGPnaI4ODlLwGaaDvd_RLyzyW0842Cl?usp=sharing

The entire process of LA taxpayers awarding Safran the $24,300,000 was swift. Weeks before the Motion appeared before the L.A. City Council, there was supposedly a public hearing on 09.23.19 whereat said meeting was closed at 9:30 am because no member of the public appeared. When the Motion was entered before the Council on 10.15.19, it was unanimously approved.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1HLDp5pqeowMQPWf9dB1KzXVDIArLIAoQ/view?usp=sharing

https://cityclerk.lacity.org/lacityclerkconnect/index.cfm?fa=ccfi.viewrecord&cfnumber=19-1245

Many members of City Council, including CD11 US Representative Ted Lieu, are good friends with Thomas Safran, as we can see from this photo taken before Safran was “vetted” as a WLA VA developer.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1yda2BlYLzDd-PUyLSp1dgfQcCU4M5UG_/view?usp=sharing

https://bhcourier.com/2016/01/24/brentwood-celebrates-the-centennial10-with-elected-officials-honoring-tom-safran/

Most importantly, of great concern is the fact that, other than for mentioning the VA Secretary’s job title; there is no mention of the word “Veteran” anywhere in the Motion whatsoever.

Amid nearly eight months of diligent research, I am still unable to locate, nor convince a private or public official involved with the Project to provide me any documents or statements confirming: a) how Thomas Safran was vetted for the project, b) any specific plans and/or designs the project budget is based upon, c) any substantial project budget, d) nor any proof, evidence or official statement that the project will house disabled Veterans.

Purportedly, the Building 207 project will get started a year from now.

As it stands, West Los Angeles VA Officer Meghan S. Flanz, who is in charge of the failing and corrupt Draft Master Plan effort – believes Thomas Safran may have a 75-year, tax free and rent free lease of the Projects underlying, Federal Taxpayer land….

Stop the crimes

Comments (6)

  1. […] to Ryan Thompson, writing for VeniceUpdate.com, the developer’s budget for this rehab project is $54.6 million, which equates to a per unit cost […]

  2. reta

    The Larry O’Connor show on kABC about the 900K.

    http://www.kabc.com/larryoconnor/
    Click October 28 show.

  3. Nick Antonicello

    Safran makes millions and fill Bonin’s campaign coffers with fat checks! Pay for play at it’s nauseating worse! How much money has Bonin received from this developer to date?

  4. Patricia

    The Safran issue seems like something Joel Grover would like to explore. Joel.Grover@nbcuni.com

  5. Robert Rosebrock

    Fellow Veterans and Friends of Veterans:

    Thanks to Ryan Thompson for exposing more of the biggest land-fraud scandal in American history perpetrated at the Los Angeles VA … as it just got BIGGER!

    This revelation confirms it’s way past time for a Federal Grand Jury Investigation to indict, prosecute and convict a host of big-name fat-cat elitists who have intentionally and maliciously defrauded thousands-upon-thousands of disabled Veterans of their benefits — the National Home for Disabled Veterans.

    President Trump had better clean up this massive crime spree posthaste, or he’s going to face serious backlash from a multitude of Veterans in 2020.

  6. You have a point Nicholas, yet remember about 50% of the homeless in Brentwood are disabled Veterans. The reason why, is because an octopus of purported “Veterans charities” secretly lobby to privatize the West Los Angeles VA so developers can build a mixed-use downtown Brentwood on the 400 acre property behind those disabled homeless Veterans backs that won’t let them in. I say secretly, because they don’t report a penny of the lobbying on their form 990 tax returns – which is a Federal crime…

    https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1n7I8uz9obcwJ_5KSTjESWyURV60xKyY0

    https://projects.propublica.org/represent/lobbying/300929049

    https://projects.propublica.org/represent/lobbying/300929585

    https://projects.propublica.org/represent/lobbying/300932722

    … It’s a complex matter worth catching uo on. Here’s a good place to start…

    https://drive.google.com/a/nhdvs.net/file/d/1uvBdaNa3ghad4BKpApUQ6wkKpbi493zZ/view?usp=drivesdk

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