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CITIZENS HAVE A REASONABLE EXPECTATION FOR ACCOUNTABILITY

LCPS must be held accountable to justify their documented, yet unexplained preference for certain properties (Wheatland) far from any community, above other properties (Lovettsville) that would offer the future schools a supportive community, central utilities and commercial growth potential and which would comply with the County Comprehensive Plan. The following timeline summary illustrates site pricing inequities and associated context. Dozens of questions requesting clarification of the events described below were raised in a citizen groups audit request (Nov2010), yet the School Board majority voted down further discussion and LCPS refused to respond to any of the questions. Citizens want to know, What is going on??? Specific documented examples of LCPS ongoing exhaustive efforts to advance their scorched earth agenda follow. Date 2002 2005 2006 Event Lovettsville Pricing Harmony opens as LCPS only Intermediate School Lovettsville Miller Farm owner contacts LCPS. LCPS non-responsive January $30,000 x 156 o Millers offer to LCPS acres = $4.65 M o LCPS respond with condemnation threats February: o Millers obtain appraisal and revise their offer o LCPS offer to Abramovitz/Rackam for Wheatland Farm (later acquired by Cangiano) o LCPS offer to Grubb o LCPS draft contract offer to Miller (no transmittal) April o Miller offer to LCPS via signed LCPS contract o LCPS offer to Miller June o Miller Offer to LCPS Wheatland Pricing

$32,900 x 156
acres = $5.1 M

$57,000 x $40,000 $26,923 x 156


acres = $4.2M $31,935 x 156 acres = $4.95M $28,205 x 156 acres = $4.4M $29,677 x 156 acres = $4.6M

99 acres =$5.6M

x 104 acres =$4M

o LCPS offer to Miller $26,000/acre (Adamo references undocumented appraisal) o List of potential HS-3 sites being evaluated include:

Fields Farm Assad Miller Farm/ Lovettsville o Grubb farm proposed to public for ES-25 and MS-10 site o LCPS internal memo show Mayor Walker urging purchase of Wheatland properties, despite Miller farm/Lovettsville Park option availability o LCPS inflates Lovettsville area site access road pricing o LCPS internal memos show staff discussion of litigation between Cangiano and Rackam over Wheatland Farm (see Center for Public Integrity 2009 articles by Dusty Smith)

Date 2007

Event LCPS draft contract to purchase Danner site (in Morrisonville, near Wheatland)

Lovettsville Pricing

Wheatland Pricing

$40,000 x 166
acres =$7M

2008

Western Schools Task Force meets County-Pville HS-3 litigation ongoing Alternate sites/interim solutions to Loudoun Valley crowding discussed. LCPS meeting Lovettsville Elementary HS/MS-10 Park/Miller flip yet no LCPS correspondence with Millers with price offers (presumably $26k/acre still on table) June 21-Jul 3 LCPS 2-week Request for Proposal (RFP) results (owners price undisclosed): Virts Scott Danner Crim LCPS disqualifies RFP response and withholds option from BOS and public CANGIANO DID NOT respond to RFP! County-Pville HS-3 litigation ongoing County-Pville litigation Settled Woodgrove begins construction March: Cangiano/Burgess contracts for Wheatland Farm released to the public April: McDonough Assemblage proposed landowner contracts valid for 1 year acres - $5.87M LCPS continue to push Wheatland and never counter offer for, or initiate studies on, McDonough site. May: Supervisors Vote Down Wheatland Farm June-Oct: LCPS 4-month RFP Nov: LCPS invoiced for Wheatland Hydro Study January: County-Pville litigation settles April: $54,000 x 108 o McDonough Assemblage contracts expire acres - $5.87M o LCPS requests funding to study Britton and Fry Farm sites McDonough Renews 6-month Assemblage and Value undisclosed makes offer to LCPS LCPS non responsive Oct: Cangiano contract for ES-25

2009

$67,000 x 170
acres=$11.4M

$54,000 x 108

2010

Value undisclosed

2011

Nov: Citizen Audit Request Submitted and School Board votes down discussion LCPS continues study of potential MS/HS-10 sites without public input or status report Red text denotes LCPS offers Black text denotes landowner offers

1. LCPS Buys Community Water-Supply Wells for a Developer: LCPS has refused to provide any explanation for, or release public documents which may explain, why citizens paid over $16,000 a for installation of Community Well WLS-16 which is located on a portion of Mr. Cangianos property that was not on the LCPS purchase contract. Available maps and tablesb show other potential wells that exist on Cangiano property which was under the purchase contract, yet no technical justification was provided for EGGIs installation of community water supply well WLS16. PREPARED BY WESTERN LOUDOUN SCHOOLS PAC - NOT AUTHORIZED BY A CANDIDATE page 2

2. LCPS Prefers Paying More for Sites in Wheatland than Lovettsville: The rationale is unclear for LCPS preference for Wheatland area properties over several sites offered in Lovettsville between 2005 and 2010. As summarized in Table 1, examples include higher prices ($67,000/acrec) offered by LCPS for Wheatland property in 2009 while simultaneously refusing lower prices for the McDonough Assemblage Lovettsville properties ($54,000/acre d). Note a second offer made in 2010 by Mr. McDonough for his Lovettsville Assemblage was never disclosed. Similarly, LCPS rejected several offers made by Mr. and Mrs. Miller including $29,677/acree, $30,000/acref and $31,935/acreg while simultaneously offering more for Wheatland properties, including $57,000/acreh and $40,000/acrei. It is noteworthy that all of the Millers asking prices were less than their licensed appraisal value of $32,900/acrej and LCPS has no recordk to substantiate their claim that LCPS appraiser valued the Miller farm at $26,000/acrel 3. LCPS Stalls Evaluation of Lovettsville Alternative: As of November 2009, approximately $84,900 was left unspent from the Wheatland Farm hydrogeologic studya budget. However that funding was not made available to study the McDonough site while the Assemblage contracts were in effect. LCPS waited until the Assemblage contracts expired in April 2010 to request Supervisors for more funds to initiate studies of Lovettsville area sites. The McDonough Assemblage contract was on the table for an entire year (April 2009-April 2010), yet LCPS did not conduct any site studies during that time. Furthermore, LCPS failure to initiate good faith communications with Assemblage landowners to foster favorable relationships during that time effectively damaged relations with Assemblage landowners (see #14 below). 4. LCPS Knowingly Misleads the Public. In May 2008 LCPS staff informed Lovettsville citizensm that the purchase or condemnation of the Moores Lovettsville home on Lutheran Church Road would be needed for Right-of-Way Access to schools at Lovettsville Park. Yet LCPS omitted from their presentation an alternate road alignment suggested by LCPS own consultant n and VDOTo (i.e., via circle at Loudoun Street and 287). It is reasonable to conclude LCPS strategy for publically asserting the likely condemnation of the Moores home successfully removed the Park as a potential site for MS/HS-10, which opened the door for LCPS subsequent contract negotiations for Cangianos Wheatland Farm. 5. LCPS Violates Procurement Policy with Bogus Request For Proposals (RFP): LCPS advertised a RFP for land in western Loudoun in June 2008. The RFP specified responses were due in 2 weeks. The two-week response timeframe was and remains unusually short based on precedent (i.e., it conflicts with other LCPS and Loudoun County RFP response timeframes which typically range from 4 to 8 weeks). After the RFP closed, LCPS staff reported to Supervisorsp and the publicq that the RFP procurement process resulted in four landowner responses: Cangiano, Scott, Danner, and Virts. However, neither Mr. Cangiano nor his representativesr submitted a proposal in response to the RFP; and, the RFP responses submitted for the Hillsboro site contiguous to Hillsboro Elementary was disqualified by LCPSt. Interestingly, future use of a RFP as a site acquisition procurement vehicle was explicitly avoided in LCPS later effort to identify potential sites, i.e., LCPS 2009 Advertisement which provided an unprecedented landowner response timeframe of 4-months. 6. LCPS Misleads School Board Members: In his defensive memo dated June 7, 2010, Dr. Adamo notifies School Board members of the RFP response submitted to LCPS two years before (in July
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7. 8.

9.

10.

11.

2008) for a property contiguous to Hillsboro Elementary. The memo suggests that LCPS staff may not have informed all School Board members of all site proposals offered to LCPS. The memo indicates LCPS intent to wait for the contract offered to expire, and then negotiate directly with the landowner. However through December 16, 2010, LCPS files have no recordr of any correspondence whatsoever with that property owner. The memo goes on to state that the soil on the Hillsboro parcel would not support a school, which directly conflicts with the environmental consultant report u conclusion that the property has 7-8 acres of suitable soil for mass sewage disposal. LCPS Misleads Supervisors: LCPS did not brief Supervisorsp about the Hillsboro site proposal after it was offereds to LCPS in response to the June 2008 RFP. Findings of LCPS Consultant Studies Not Documented: LCPS invoices show Bury+Partners billed $36,500 for due diligence and geotechnical studies at the Hillsboro (Crim) property, but no studies or findings are available or listed in the February 2010 Privilege Log prepared by LCPS attorney. The consultant work product for LCPS expenditure of $36,500 remains a mystery. LCPS Ignores Conflicts-of-Interest: LCPS administrators selected attorney William Chapman to represent Loudoun taxpayers interests during LCPS contract negotiations with Mr. Cangiano in 2009. However, Mr. Chapman had reported a prior business relationship with Mr. Cangiano and has acknowledged the appearance of a conflict of interest. LCPS administrators ignored Mr. Chapmans conflict again by bringing him in during the subsequent negotiation of a 2010 contract with Mr. Cangianov following the initial contract negotiation. Further, LCPS hired EGGI instead of issuing a RFP for competitive procurement of a contractor to perform the hydrogeologic study of Mr. Cangianos Wheatland property. LCPS invoices a show EGGIs hydrogeologic study budget was at least $212,700 (relates to potential procurement violation identified above). EGGI had a clear conflict of interest based on their prior work for Mr. Cangiano at his Wheatland property. The conflict of interest is noteworthy because the 2009 LCPS-Cangiano contract specifically required a favorable hydrogeologic study outcome. LCPS Prefers to Build Their Own Wastewater Treatment Plants: The potential exists for cost recovery of taxpayers investment of several million dollars for school water/wastewater treatment facilities if these facilities are sited in/near Towns. However, offers of land in Hillsboro for ES-25 and near Lovettsville for MS/HS-10 have been repeatedly rejected. For sites with access to central water/wastewater utilities, a precedent exists for LCPS payment of tap and usage fees for utilities. Because the cost of building and operating central utilities is shared with Town residents, it is less expensive for schools to use central utilities than construct and operate the stand-alone private systems LCPS would otherwise need to build, as was proposed in Wheatland. LCPS has no incentive to consider the cost-benefit to taxpayers County-wide for constructing school infrastructure in Towns where investment returns exist, as in the case of the Town of Hillsboro which currently faces serious water supply problems and would benefit from water/wastewater utilities sited in/near the Town to support ES-25. Particularly considering LCPS has already committed over $233,000 for a roundabout to be located at the intersection of Hillsboro Road and Route 9, as recommended in the HS-3 (Woodgrove High School) traffic study. LCPS Unable Access VDOT Sidewalk Grant Funding: VDOT has offered grants under their Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Program. According to their website, in 2009, VDOT funded 16 infrastructure projects, many for sidewalk construction. The list of funded projects state-wide
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12.

13.

14.

15.

since 2007 shows none for Loudoun County. It is not known if LCPS has even submitted any VDOT SRTS grant applications. An earlier FOIA request for LCPS Transportation Plans for several schools revealed such plans have not been prepared or submitted to VDOT. LCPS Refuses Help from Outside Experts: LCPS refused 2009 offers made by subject matter experts in school siting (Tim Torma, USEPA Smart Growth) and land acquisition (Charles Hess, Director Division of Real Estate Services Commonwealth of Virginia) to help LCPS with ongoing school land acquisition challenges. Perceived Bias Against Site Alternative near LCPS Administrators Homes: LCPS did not respond in a timely manner to Mr. and Mrs. Millers letters dated November 2, 2005 and January 4, 2006 sent by their realtor to Mr. Evan Mohler, LCPS Assistant Superintendent. The Miller letters indicated the Millers enthusiastic interest in selling their 156-acre Lovettsville farm for a school and park. Coincidentally the Millers farm, located at the northeast corner of Lovettsville Road and Milltown Road, is situated across the street from Mr. Mohlers farm and approximately -mile from Dr. Adamos home. Prior to their January 2008 letter, Dr. Adamo frequently stated that the Millers were unwilling sellers. LCPS Failure to Positively Engage Landowners with Land In or Adjacent Towns (in Compliance with the County Comprehensive Plan): The Millers had to lobby LCPS to consider their land, twice, before LCPS responded. In his initial responsew, Dr. Adamo references (not once but twice in the same letter) the School Boards authority to condemn property. The Miller-LCPS 2006 negotiations have since been characterized as Its a lot easier to kill a deal than make a deal, which suggest that LCPS had no sincere interest in the Miller property. This conclusion is supported by the iteratively lower counter offers made by LCPS (which were below market rates) and below simultaneous offers made to other landowners (see #2 above). However, the most obvious evidence of their effort to damage relations with the Millers is the fact that, over the following year and a half, LCPS never made any new offers to purchase the Millers property despite LCPS 2007 public presentations of the Millers farm to be used for schools and the alternative of flipping Lovettsville Park to the Miller farm to accommodate schools on the Park. The success of LCPS strategy (damage relations with landowners offering Lovettsville property to advance sites in Wheatland) is demonstrated by the Millers January 2008 letter request to have their property removed from further consideration. Additionally, LCPS list of HS-10 sites provided to the Town of Lovettsville in 2007 included the Hunter property as part of the OBrien Assemblage on 287. Mr. Hunter was angry that LCPS staff had not bothered to extend him the courtesy of contacting him before publicizing his propertyx. LCPS Traffic Assessments Demonstrate Bias Against Lovettsville sites: LCPS lists various improvements for the Schoene/Engle and McDonough Assemblagese without consultation with VDOT staffy to discuss options or possible variances which may be allowed in the Town. The lack of consultation with respect to these properties when there is a precedento established for LCPS meeting with VDOT and Loudoun County Transportation staff is noteworthy. Further, LCPS 2009 public presentationq never included details or estimated costs for presumed traffic and utility improvements for the proposed 3-school Wheatland complex; however, cost estimates of $6.5Md for road improvements alone were prepared and presented for the McDonough Assemblage. While a single road access serves two schools on Fields Farm, LCPS presentation d
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for the McDonough Assemblage indicated two access roads (northern Fry Farm Road and southern Lutheran Church Road) would be required to serve schools on the site. 16. LCPS Pays for Continued Study of Site Rejected by Supervisors: After Supervisors rejected LCPS proposal to site 3 schools at Wheatland Farm, LCPS approveda expenditure of $23,100 for EGGI to prepare the Wheatland Hydrogeologic Study Report. 17. LCPS Requests More Funding from Supervisors When Funding Was Already Available for Studies: As of November 2009, approximately $84,900 was unspent from the Wheatland Farm hydrogeologic studya budget. However that funding was not made available to study the McDonough site while the Assemblage contracts remained in effect for the year between April 2009 - April 2010. LCPS waited until the Assemblage contracts expired in April 2010 before asking Supervisors for more funding to initiate studies of Lovettsville area sites. 18. LCPS and School Board Dismiss Citizen Groups November 2010 Request For Audit of Land Acquisition Department Irregularities. Chairman Stevens misrepresented Board policy in his effort to block Mr. Ohneiser from asking the group spokesperson a clarifying question. Later Board members Ohneiser and Guzman voted to discuss the citizens request; however, all other Board members voted against any further discussion.
a

Urban/Emery and Garrett Groundwater Inc (EGGI) Wheatland invoice, 11Nov 2009 EGGI, Pump Test Plan, Wheatland, 26 April 2009 c 2009 LCPS-Cangiano/Burgess contracts d LCPS presentation, Western Loudoun Schools: Alternate Sites 26 May2009 e Miller final asking price, 9 June 2006 f Miller initial asking price offer, 4 Jan 2006 g LCPS February 2006 contract which was signed by Mr. and Mrs. Miller and notarized on 7 Apr 2006 and submitted to LCPS by their attorney Mr. Moyes h Rackam/Abramovitz letter of intent 13 Feb 2006 i Grubb contract March 2006 and Danner draft contract (circa 2006) j 10 Feb 2006 k February 2010 Privileged Log, Stinger v. LCPS FOIA case l Adamo letter 28 Jun 2006 m LCPS Presentation, Secondary School Sites in Lovettsville 28 May 2008, page 14 n Scott Dunn, Timmons email to Sam Adamo, Lovettsville Bypass Options, 4 March 2006 o Lovettsville/Fields Farm Traffic Meeting 3/20/06 Minutes p Supervisor Briefing Packet, FOIA response by Paul Brown, Loudoun County Capital Budget Manager, 16 Mar2009 q LCPS Presentation, Community Information Meeting, Proposed Western Loudoun School Sites 29 Apr 2009 r February 2010 Privileged Log, Stinger v. LCPS FOIA case s Mark Nelis RFP response email, 3 July 2008 t Wayde Byard, LCPS PIO, email FOIA response, 27 May 2009 u Soils and Environmental Services, Inc. (SES), Hillsboro School site, Soils Report, on-site sewage disposal, 11 Dec2008 v February 2010 Privileged Log, Stinger v. LCPS FOIA case w Sam Adamo, LCPS Director, letter, 27 Jan 2006 x Telephone communication initiated by Mr. Hunter to S. Stinger, 11 Dec 2007 y James Zeller, VDOT email FOIA response, 11 May 2009
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