Fix Our Harbors

San Mateo County Harbor District

The Half Moon Bay fishing, boating and surfing community would like facilities modernized at Pillar Point Harbor. It's time to fix crumbling infurtructure, chronic water pollution, dangerous working conditions on Johnson Pier, unsafe docks, inadequate public restrooms, outdated visitor serving facilities, poor wifi connectivity and compromised trail access.

Robert Bernardo & Will Holsinger skip board meeting for campaign fundraisers

Harbor candidates choose campaigning over duties of office

Half Moon Bay Review - Editorial by Clay Lambert

The San Mateo County Harbor Commission scheduled a meeting on Sept. 17, but three members — all currently candidates for re-election — had other priorities. Consequently, there was no quorum. Voters learned more about candidate priorities from their absence than they ever would have from their presence at the meeting that night.

Jim Tucker was attending services for a friend who died and says he told staff he couldn’t make it. That is certainly understandable.

Instead of attending the commission meeting on the evening of Sept. 17, Robert Bernardo was at the Oyster Point Yacht Club for a gathering that was ostensibly meant to “celebrate the anniversary of the McAteer-Petris Act,” credited with stopping the fill of the San Francisco Bay. The announcement of the event praises Bernardo at least as much as any worthwhile legislation and, whatever the intent, Bernardo acknowledges that he used it to raise money for his own campaign.

When questioned later, he said he had hoped to make both the meeting and the fundraiser, and he acknowledged that attending to the fundraiser — instead of the office he hopes to win with that money — was not his finest decision.

“I was trying to do too many things,” he said.

Will Holsinger said that personal commitments “took me out of the county that day.” That’s strange because he appears in a photo taken that night and posted on Daly City Councilman Ray Buenaventura’s Twitter account. In the photo, Holsinger seems to be having a whale of a time, yucking it up at Buenaventura’s campaign kickoff event instead of attending the Harbor Commission meeting.

Will Holsinger standing next to the "Gone With The Wind" poster. 

Just down the street at the Municipal Services Building in South San Francisco, the commission was to have discussed the soon-to-be-vacant general manager’s position behind closed doors. Staff was prepared to present a special rate for visiting boaters at Oyster Point Marina. Ironically, the commission was going to discuss canceling meetings in December and January.

Forget duty, it would seem to be common courtesy for commissioners with other priorities to tell colleagues Pietro Parravano and Sabrina Brennan they needn’t make the trip from the coast to South San Francisco. Fortunately or unfortunately, you needn’t worry about the district’s contracted attorney, Steven Miller. He plans to submit an invoice for his time, compounding the waste of tax dollars that night. (Reached on Thursday, Miller declined to say how much he would bill the district.)

What are voters to make of candidates who value the money used to attain office more than the duties of the office itself? What is the message from sitting elected officials who don’t bother telling their colleagues, let alone the public, when they have other commitments on meeting nights? What are they saying when they rack up campaign dollars even as they waste yours on staff and consultants called to meetings that don’t take place?

You will decide in November.

What's up with Peter Grenell's Bank Club?

It appears that Peter Grenell authorized the Harbor District web designer Georgia Wright to do work (web design and brochure design) for the California Maritime Infrastructure
Bank and Authority (CMIB/A).  During the Aug. 6th board meeting Grenell stated that Ms. Wright's company Market Web Consulting had never invoiced CMIB/A or been paid by CMIB/A.  He also said that Market Web Consulting had worked for the CMIB/A for about 8 or 9 years.

It appears that the San Mate County Harbor District may have been paying Market Web Consulting for CMIB/A work/billable hours.  Peter Grenell may have authorized spending Harbor District funds on the CMIB/A website and marketing materials.  Georgia Wright may have been told to bill the Harbor District for her time/work for the CMIB/A and told not to include the CMIB/A billable hours as a line item on Market Web Consulting invoices to the SMCHD.  Its possible that Ms. Wright lumped her CMIB/A hours in with her Harbor District hours and invoiced the Harbor District for both.

It's unusual that Peter Grenell invited Brian Foss, CMIB/A Board Member and past President and David Hull, CMIB/A Executive Director to be on the Harbor District committee to interview candidates for the Harbormaster position.  

At Aug. 6, 2014 Harbor District meeting Peter Grenell said that for about 9 years the Harbor District web design consulting firm Web Market Consulting had also been providing web design for the CMIB/A.  Read the Web Market Consulting Invoice.

During the same meeting Commissioner Brennan asked Peter Grenell if Web Market Consulting was paid to design and update the CMIB/A website. Peter Grenell said, "Number one, they don't get paid, they've never invoiced for their services. So there's no money changing hands. Number two, It seemed a matter of convenience to have Web Market Consulting pickup the rather minimal website needs of CMIA, that's how that happened." 

Commissioner Brennan asked if any SMC Harbor District staff, employees or consultants have engaged in any CMIB/A activities?   Peter Grenell said, "No."  2:10:12

Commissioner Brennan asked if any SMC Harbor District employees of Harbor Commissioners have attended any CMIB/A events or meetings?  2:10:42  

Peter Grenell said, "Harbormaster Scott Grindy attended the Northern California seminar, a one day thing in San Francisco."

Questions

  • Who was on the interview committee when Scott Grindy was interviewed by Harbor District?  Read the PRA email below. 
  • The email indicates that Brian Foss, CMIB/A Board Member and past President and David Hull, CMIB/A Executive Director may have been on the interview committee or in some way involved with the interview process. 
  • Were any Harbor Commissioners on the interview committee?
  • Did the SMCHD pay Web Market Consulting for any work for the CMIB/A?

CMIB/A Website Emails

Grenell's Email About Harbor District Interview Committee

Pietro Parravano was removed from the Roots of Change Stewardship Council in 2011

We're delighted to learn that Pietro Parravano was removed from the Roots of Change Stewardship Council in 2011. It's good to know that the citizen initiative to broaden awareness about this crooked commissioner is successful.

Michael Dimock, President of Roots of Change tweeted the correction below on June 26, 2014. 

Scott Grindy's creepy video surveillance of hillside residences

El Granada residents should beware of inappropriate use of "Homeland Security" video surveillance by Harbormaster Scott Grindy.

Everett port ends golf ball surveillance

Friday, May 22, 2009 at 3:41pm

EVERETT, Wash. —

When golf balls began pelting the Port of Everett's shipping terminal, security officers trained their anti-terrorism cameras on the nearby hillside neighbors, hoping to catch the mystery duffers.

But after residents complained of being spied on, port officials turned the surveillance cameras around. Nevertheless, the barrage of balls has ended.

Scott-Grindy-Harbormaster-Harbor-Master-Port-District-San-Mateo-County-Camera

"In hindsight, we realize the golf balls are a public safety issue, not a threat to the terminals in terms of somebody breaking in," port security director Scott Grindy told The Herald of Everett. "Aiming at the hillside probably wasn't an appropriate use."

Police reports were filed and the video cameras were trained on Rucker Hill after dozens of golf balls landed on the port property in recent weeks, which Grindy said endangered workers and equipment.

The cameras, obtained with some of the more than $2.3 million in federal Homeland Security money for the port, never spotted any balls being hit, and the effort will not be resumed, Grindy told The Associated Press on Friday.

"We've decided to keep our cameras on our perimeter and security fence," he said.

Residents who learned about the surveillance from an article published by The Herald newspaper on May 16 were upset they were being watched.

"If they have the ability to tape my house, there should be a written policy to determine who can see these tapes and how they are used," Dave Miller, whose bedroom window faces the port, told the Everett paper.

Charlene Rawson, chairwoman of the Port Gardner Neighborhood Association, which includes Rucker Hill and the port's terminals, arranged a meeting with port Executive Director John Mohr.

"We had a nice conversation about it," said Rawson, who initially said she believed the port's actions violated people's privacy. "The port said they don't have the cameras pointed at any particular house."

There's no way for the public to determine exactly what the cameras recorded. Port officials said they cannot share video footage because of Homeland Security rules, not can they disclose the location of cameras or answer whether they can pan or zoom.

Grindy said port officials are now working on a surveillance policy.

The only reported damage from the wayward balls was a broken window in a vacant pickup truck two weeks ago. But Grindy said near misses were reported by crews on Amtrak passenger trains, Sounder commuter rail and Burlington Northern Santa Fe freight trains.

Golfers apparently were practicing at the top of the hill in an area where the port terminals, railroad tracks and a public footpath cannot be seen, he said.

"I think the whole issue is that an avid golfer is not realizing that there's all this stuff below," he said.

Port Officials Use DHS Anti-Terror Cameras to Stop Golf Ball Bombardment

FoxNews.com published this article about Harbormaster Scott Grindy's overreaction to golf balls.

May 16, 2009  -  Associated Press

EVERETT, Wash. –  Golf balls are bombarding the Port of Everett and anti-terrorism cameras are being trained on a residential neighborhood to hunt down the source.

Port officials believe someone on Rucker Hill is whacking golf balls down the hill onto port property, endangering dozens of workers and millions of dollars worth of equipment and cargo.

"We're trying to use any means possible to stop it, aside from posting somebody in the field of fire all day and night," said Ed Madura, a port security official.

The port says the flying golf balls constitute a threat to personal safety. Pointing video surveillance cameras toward the likely source is an appropriate use of the equipment, port officials say.

In the eyes of at least one resident in the Rucker Hill neighborhood southwest of downtown, swiveling the cameras from the fence line to the neighborhood is an invasion of privacy.

"Hitting golf balls is a problem, but if they turn their cameras up on the neighborhood and spy on us, that's a bigger problem," said David Mascarenas, a neighborhood watchdog who has for years fought the port to improve the community's access to public land.

The cameras were paid for, along with fencing and other security equipment, with $2.3 million in grants from the Department of Homeland Security following the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

Before the attacks, the Everett port had open terminals and only minimal security. People who live in the surrounding neighborhoods often would walk down and drop crab pots off piers that are now blocked by tall cyclone fences topped with razor wire.

Golf balls have been raining on the port's Pacific Terminal for several months. However, a police report wasn't filed until this week when 18 golf balls over the span of two days were found near stacks of shipping containers. One ball even bounced into a piece of equipment waiting to be shipped to Alaska.

"It's been going on for a while, but it's been getting a lot worse the last couple of days," port spokeswoman Lisa Lefeber said.

Dock superintendent Bob Porter has been shagging balls from the Rucker Hill golfer for months. He keeps a box of them in his office near Pier 1.

"We have to put a stop to it," Porter said.

No injuries have been reported, although an errant golf ball is believed to have broken the driver's-side window of a longshoreman's pickup truck, which was parked in a secure area.

Lefeber said as many as 100 people may be working at the port on any given day. And while most activity happens during the day, people work at the port all hours.

John Nostrom lives near a grassy overlook on Warren Avenue. On two instances, in recent years, he has seen young men pull up to the spot, haul out their drivers, then tee off. The spot is a little more than 200 yards from the place where balls are being found.

"They don't hang out too long," he said.

A good golfer could drive a ball at speeds of up to 165 mph, said Rex Fullerton, general manager at Legion Memorial Golf Course in north Everett.

At that speed, golf balls can seriously injure someone.

"It's obviously a dangerous thing for somebody to just hit a golf ball into an area where it flies over people," Fullerton said. "Of course, we'd encourage them to hit golf balls at our golf course."

If someone is caught, any criminal charges that might be filed would depend on the circumstances, said Sgt. Robert Goetz with the Everett Police Department.

It isn't clear who is driving golf balls onto port land or why. Is it someone practicing their chip shot or a person with a chip on their shoulder?

Steve Ritchie, a dispatcher with The International Longshore and Warehouse Union, Local 32, said he wouldn't be surprised if it was all a malicious act by a disgruntled Rucker Hill resident.

The neighborhood, named for the prominent Rucker family, which built a hilltop mansion there in the early 1900s, boasts some of the city's best views of Port Gardner, the Olympic Mountains and Cascade Range.

There have long been tensions between the neighborhood and the port over noise from container ships that are sometimes unloaded in the middle of the night, glare from floodlights and exhaust from idling vessels.

"There's a lot of people out on Rucker Hill that want the longshoremen more or less shut down," Ritchie said.

Scott Grindy is "Big Brother"

Owen Lei / KING 5 News - August 15, 2009

Link to VIDEO

EVERETT, Wash. - Rucker Hill gives you one of the oldest and most scenic views of the Everett waterfront, but it's not a personal driving range, said officials from the Port of Everett.

The port has filed a police report against whoever is hitting golf balls -- 30 to 50 of them over the past few months, almost 20 in the past two days alone - down towards shipping containers below.

So far, no one has been injured, said post communications administrator Lisa Lefeber, but a golf ball did damage one longshoreman's truck.

Neighbors we spoke with say they don't know who the mystery golfer is, but what he or she is doing is not a smart idea.

"We have disagreements with the port," said homeowner David Mascarenas. "But we would never do that, to injure anybody, particularly any of our longshoremen."

"A golf ball flying that far and hitting somebody down at the port would certainly be a deadly affair," said neighbor Win Miller. "And something needs to be done."

The problem is, these homeowners don't like what's being done either.

Port security is invoking a privilege granted originally for anti-terrorist reasons after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, said Lefeber. When faced with a potential threat, they can point the port's normally-fixed surveillance cameras to look for the source of the threat. In this case, that means up towards the homes.

"They don't have the right to spy on us, they don't have the right to do any of that without telling us," said Mascarenas, who added that the port has since informed them of their intentions. " Giving up my rights for a bunch of containers? It's not right."

Port officials say they're only moving the cameras after a golf ball incident happens, and after 24 hours, they're repositioning the cameras to point back towards the terminal. They add that they understand the residents' concerns, and that they have no plans to do anything with archived footage that is irrelevant to the case.

Everett police say they are investigating the incidents. Depending on the severity of the damage, charges could range from Malicious Mischief to Reckless Endangerment to Assault, though nothing that severe has happened yet, said Sergeant Robert Goetz.

Adds Mascarenas: "Hey whoever's doing it, please stop! Go out to a driving range somewhere."

Will Holsinger is the man on the tarmac tossing grenades

Commissioner Will Holsinger's verbal attacks on women and bullying of women must stop.  Vote him out of office in November 2014. 

Daily Post . July 10, 2014

          Click to see fullscreen newspaper clipping.

Daily Post article published on July 10, 2014

Grand Jury gives Harbor Commission a shellacking

The Civil Grand Jury ripped into the San Mateo County Harbor Commission in a new report titled, "What is the Price of Dysfunction?" The report was released to the public on July 9, 2014.

The report says, "It is impossible for the Grand Jury to ignore the negative public comments that the District’s general manager frequently receives. He is most often the public face of the Harbor District. However, it should be noted that the general manager serves at the pleasure of the Harbor Commission with whom final oversight resides."

Will Holsinger Bullies Women

Commissioner Holsinger's 2014 campaign website neglects to mention that he bullies women. 

Will Holsinger:  Twice Appointed, Never Elected

The board of Harbor Commissioners appointed Will Holsinger twice, once in 2012 following the death of Commissioner Sally Campbell, and a second time in 2013 following the death of Commissioner Leo Padreddii.

Appointed in 2012 & 2013

Two Time Loser

Will Holsinger lost two Harbor District elections, the first was Nov. 2, 2004 and the second was Nov. 6, 2012.

2004 Election Results

2012 Election Results

Make your voice heard: Thursday, July 10 at 6:30pm Oceano Hotel

 
 

Lisa Wise Consulting is facilitating the Pillar Point Harbor planning workshop.

Participate:

  • Thursday, July 10th - 6:30pm 
  • Oceano Hotel, Princeton by-the-sea
  • Thursday, July 10, 2014 - 6:30pm

Ladies and Gentleman we give you President Pietro Parravano

At the June 18, 2014 Harbor District meeting Pietro Parravano was elected president of the board of Harbor Commissioners.

Jean Savaree severs ties with Harbor Commissioner Will Holsinger

Click this image to watch the video.

Click this image to watch the video.

In June 2014, Jean B. Savaree, attorney with Aaronson, Dickerson, Cohn & Lanzone, ended a 25 year engagement with the San Mateo County Harbor District.

In March 2014, Jean Savaree informed the board of Harbor Commissioners that her firm would not renew its contract with the District. The announcement followed a heated meeting where Commissioner Will Holsinger accused Savaree of "poor legal scholarship" and disagreed with her findings. Read about the "research" Will Holsinger disagreed with and his repeated harassment of the only woman member of the Harbor Commission. 

Aaronson, Dickerson, Cohn & Lanzone first engaged to serve as Harbor District legal counsel with the appointment of Kenneth M. Dickerson in 1989, and he was succeeded by Marc L. Zafferano in 1998, and by Jean B. Savaree in 2011.

William-Holsinger-harbor-commissioner-bully-Jim-Tucker-Robert-Bernardo

We confront bullying and aggression head on.  Harbor Commissioner William Holsinger has crossed the line too many times.  The unacceptable bullying must stop now.

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