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Thread: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

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    Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    Sen. Dianne Feinstein

    U.S. Sen. Diane Feinstein’s husband Richard Blum won the first-phase construction contract for California’s high-speed rail.

    The Perini-Zachary-Parsons bid was the lowest received from the five consortia participating in the bidding process, but “low” is a relative term,” the Laer Pearce, author of Crazifornia wrote. ”The firms bid $985,142,530 to build the wildly anticipated first section of high speed rail track that will tie the megopolis of Madera to the global finance center of Fresno. Do the division, and you find that the low bid came in at a mere $35 million per mile.”

    “As this fiasco progress, remember that this $35 million per mile represents the best California can do on the section of track the High on Crack Speed Rail Authority selected to go first because it will be the cheapest,” Pearce said.

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    Re: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    How much does it cost to build a high speed train? Estimates for just 442 Kms of high speed trains come in at 151 billion. Around 342 million per mile. Distance between Fresno & Madera clocks in at 30 miles. Making this cost around 328 million per mile. So his bid was 14 million cheaper taking into consideration $/Mile. Then again, I don't expect you to actually address why it costs this much to build a high speed train, but I do wonder how issuing a cheaper construction cost = corruption.
    I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality. - MLK

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    Re: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    Quote Originally Posted by Hatuey View Post
    How much does it cost to build a high speed train? Estimates for just 442 Kms of high speed trains come in at 151 billion. Around 342 million per mile. Distance between Fresno & Madera clocks in at 30 miles. Making this cost around 328 million per mile. So his bid was 14 million cheaper taking into consideration $/Mile. Then again, I don't expect you to actually address why it costs this much to build a high speed train, but I do wonder how issuing a cheaper construction cost = corruption.
    You don't see a conflict of interest here?

    http://crazifornia.com/2013/04/16/di...gh-speed-rail/

    And that doesn’t include the cost of rolling stock (that’s engines and cars to the normal among us). Nor does it include the cost of electrifying the route. Does it at least include the cost of land acquisition? No, it does not.
    When the Federal Government Embraces a Gangster Corporation

    According to the New York US Attorney’s office: “Following a four-week trial, a federal jury in Brooklyn yesterday (March 9, 2011) found Zohrab B. Marashlian, the former president of Perini Corp.’s Civil Division, an international construction services corporation, guilty of fraud and conspiracy to launder money. The charges arose out of Marashlian’s false representation to New York government agencies that Disadvantaged Business Entities (DBE’s) were performing work in connection with major public works contracts, when, in reality, Marashlian had non-disadvantaged businesses favored by Perini Corp. do the work.” Tutor Perini paid Marashlian $14 million in salary while all this was going on. Two days before Marashlian was to receive a multi-year prison sentence he committed suicide. A fellow employee is currently doing a long prison term for the same case.

    Perini has been caught doing such things over and over again. They are absolutely ridiculous in California projects. … According to the Seattle News some of the Perini headlines read: “In February, Tutor-Saliba and Perini agreed to pay $19 million to settle racketeering and fraud allegations in a San Francisco airport project.” … “The companies are embroiled in an 11 – year legal battle over $16 million in extra costs on a Los Angeles subway job
    Insider Trader, War Profiteer, Chinese Company Invested Dianne Feinstein : Indybay

    Dianne Feinstein has funneled over 1 billion in contracts to her husband Richard Blum's URS ... just one of his companies to which she has funneled money stolen from the people of America. She has also with our money helped him profiteer from bankster foreclosures.
    Metroactive | Metro Newspaper Silicon Valley | News, Events, Movies, Clubs

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    Re: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronson View Post
    You don't see a conflict of interest here?
    I asked you once already: How does cheaper cost construction per mile equal corruption? I looked at your "sources" and here is where I stopped reading:

    She was forced to resign from the military construction
    appropriations subcommittee because of her
    criminal acts but is still head of the intelligence
    committee! though she deliberately falsified
    intelligence and voted, unlike most Democrats,
    to give the unelected Bush authority to rain fire
    and death on Iraq.
    And no, if it was a situation where multiple companies bid and his contract came up as the lowest in construction cost, then it's not a conflict of interest unless you can show that:

    1. The other companies weren't given a fair shot at bidding.
    2. His company wasn't the lowest bidder.

    And more importantly:

    3. He benefited from his connection to Senator Feinstein to get his contract.

    ---------------------

    You can't even prove the last one without a lot of assumption making - but even if you did, you'd still have to show his contract was somehow less enticing the other ones to complete the "conflict of interest" thing.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by Hatuey; 05-01-13 at 03:55 AM.
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    Re: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    Quote Originally Posted by Hatuey View Post
    I asked you once already: How does cheaper cost construction per mile equal corruption? I looked at your "sources" and here is where I stopped reading:
    You have to be kidding me. Clearly you have not read any of the sources provided. His company has a history of FRAUD and RACKTEERING. They overcharged the city of LA by nearly 20 million when they worked on the subway.

    You're just shilling for Feinstein and excusing corruption because she is a liberal democrat. Shameful.

    And no, if it was a situation where multiple companies bid and his contract came up as the lowest in construction cost, then it's not a conflict of interest unless you can show that:

    1. The other companies weren't given a fair shot at bidding.
    2. His company wasn't the lowest bidder.

    And more importantly:

    3. He benefited from his connection to Senator Feinstein to get his contract.

    ---------------------

    You can't even prove the last one without a lot of assumption making - but even if you did, you'd still have to show his contract was somehow less enticing the other ones to complete the "conflict of interest" thing.

    Good luck.
    His connection is he married to her

    Oh and there is this:

    HIGH-SPEED RAIL AGENCY CHANGED BID CRITERIA | UTSanDiego.com

    California’s high-speed rail authority changed its rules for selecting a company to build the first phase of the bullet train in a way that allowed a California bidder to emerge as the lead candidate despite having the lowest technical rating for safety and design quality, a newspaper reported Friday.

    The process was changed without approval from the board that oversees the California High-Speed Rail Authority, the Los Angeles Times reported.

    Under the original criteria, bidders were to be narrowed to the final three based only on the technical evaluation. Then cost would be considered. That process would have eliminated the bid from Tutor Perini-Zachry-Parsons because it had the lowest technical score.

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    Re: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronson View Post
    You have to be kidding me. Clearly you have not read any of the sources provided. His company has a history of FRAUD and RACKTEERING. They overcharged the city of LA by nearly 20 million when they worked on the subway.

    You're just shilling for Feinstein and excusing corruption because she is a liberal democrat. Shameful.
    So you can't tell me how cheaper cost, which can be demonstrated by the cost of similar construction projects, equals corruption. Your red herrings are weird.

    His connection is he married to her
    That doesn't make it a conflict of interest. That makes it a family connection. A conflict of interest would mean he used her to somehow get his contract. Can you show us how he did that?

    According to your source:

    Under the original criteria, bidders were to be narrowed to the final three based only on the technical evaluation. Then cost would be considered. That process would have eliminated the bid from Tutor Perini-Zachry-Parsons because it had the lowest technical score.

    Under the new criteria, all the bids that met the technical criteria were considered, leaving the door open for Tutor Perini.
    So, they allowed anyone who met technical criteria to bid and then cost was considered. Meaning, they basically said that if someone met standards, they could build it and gave it to the guy who built it cheapest. I still don't see your conflict of interest here. Unless Feinstein herself changed the criteria. Meeting "higher criteria", whatever that means would necessarily mean higher cost. Is that what you're advocating? Higher criteria, higher costs and more government spending?

    Here are the other bids:

    Bullet train bid rules altered - Los Angeles Times

    While it offered the lowest price at $985.1 million, the Tutor Perini team's technical score ranked last. Ferrovial and Acciona, two Spanish firms with significant high-speed rail experience, had the highest technical mark but bid almost $1.4 billion.
    In essence what you're saying is that, the contract should have been awarded to "higher technical standards" even if it cost nearly 500 million more dollars to state that is already broke. Very well, but why shouldn't it have been awarded to somebody who not only met technical standards but also offered a cheaper price? That's like saying you wouldn't buy a $5K, perfectly working 10 year old car because there is a $20K, perfectly working 5 year old car right next to it.

    How very liberal of you.
    Last edited by Hatuey; 05-01-13 at 04:43 AM.
    I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality. - MLK

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    Re: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    Quote Originally Posted by Hatuey View Post
    So you can't tell me how cheaper cost, which can be demonstrated by the cost of similar construction projects, equals corruption. Your red herrings are weird.
    High-Speed Rail bidding practice questionable - San Francisco Transportation Policy | Examiner.com

    Engineering contacts say Tutor-Perini is noted for bidding low, targeting program inadequacies and writing change orders as fast as a waitress writing breakfast orders at a truck stop- fast and furious.
    Cheaper cost relative to what? Again, the rules were changed at the last minute so this company could bid without any oversight. Secondly this company has a history of FRAUD, RACKETEERING, and OVERCHARGING. This company has a proven history of high cost overruns. You really going to sit there and claim it was a sensible decision with taxpayer money to alter bidding rules so a corrupt company with a history of rampant overcharging could win the contract? This is a company that has even recently been busted for money laundering in NY.

    That doesn't make it a conflict of interest. That makes it a family connection. A conflict of interest would mean he used her to somehow get his contract. Can you show us how he did that?
    Yea ok I'm sure the fact that the bidding rules were changed at the last minute so the least technically competent company with a history of fraud and racketeering could bid was just a coincidence.

    So, they allowed anyone who met technical criteria to bid and then cost was considered. Meaning, they basically said that if someone met standards, they could build it and gave it to the guy who built it cheapest. I still don't see your conflict of interest here. Unless Feinstein herself changed the criteria. Meeting "higher criteria", whatever that means would necessarily mean higher cost. Is that what you're advocating? Higher criteria, higher costs and more government spending?
    His company wasn't allowed to bid on the project until the rules were changed at the last minute

    Bullet train bid rules altered - Los Angeles Times

    State high-speed rail officials acknowledged Thursday that they changed their rules for selecting a builder for the bullet train's first phase in the Central Valley, a shift that subsequently made it possible for a consortium led by Sylmar-based Tutor Perini to be ranked as the top candidate despite receiving the lowest technical rating.
    What part of a rampant history of FRAUD, CORRUPTION, and RACKETEERING do you not understand? Why award taxpayer dollars to a company that has committed fraud and overcharged taxpayers in the past? Why alter the rules at the last minute to award this company a 1billion dollar contract? I will sig bet you right now this project goes over budget by millions.

    Just because the company bids at a specific price doesn't mean that's what the project is going to cost taxpayers. As was pointed out in the previous post (which you ignored) this same company overcharged the city of LA by millions on a previous contract.

    In essence what you're saying is that, the contract should have been awarded to "higher technical standards" even if it cost nearly 500 million more dollars to state that is already broke. Very well, but why shouldn't it have been awarded to somebody who not only met technical standards but also offered a cheaper price? That's like saying you wouldn't buy a $5K, perfectly working 10 year old car because there is a $20K, perfectly working 5 year old car right next to it.

    How very liberal of you.
    Laughable. The fact that you continue to shill for this obvious cronyism and corruption speaks volumes. This is just par for the course for Feinstein and her corrupt husband.

    EXCLUSIVE: Senator's husband's firm cashes in on crisis - Washington Times

    On the day the new Congress convened this year, Sen. Dianne Feinstein introduced legislation to route $25 billion in taxpayer money to a government agency that had just awarded her husband’s real estate firm a lucrative contract to sell foreclosed properties at compensation rates higher than the industry norms.

    Mrs. Feinstein’s intervention on behalf of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. was unusual: the California Democrat isn’t a member of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs with jurisdiction over FDIC; and the agency is supposed to operate from money it raises from bank-paid insurance payments - not direct federal dollars.
    I'm sure it was just a coincidence

    Uproar Grows as Sen. Feinstein’s Husband Profits from Post Office Privatization | Accuracy.Org

    Army contract for Feinstein's husband / Blum is a director of firm that will get up to $600 million - SFGate

    Don't worry I'm sure it's all just a coincidence

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    Re: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    The other companies. Try and keep up.

    Again, the rules were changed at the last minute so this company could bid without any oversight. Secondly this company has a history of FRAUD, RACKETEERING, and OVERCHARGING. This company has a proven history of high cost overruns. You really going to sit there and claim it was a sensible decision with taxpayer money to alter bidding rules so a corrupt company with a history of rampant overcharging could win the contract? This is a company that has even recently been busted for money laundering in NY.
    Here is their "history" of fraud:

    DOT - The United States and Tutor Perini Corporation Settle Civil Fraud Claims for $9.75 Million | Office of Inspector General

    Benton J. Campbell, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, today announced the settlement of claims that Tutor Perini Corporation, formerly Perini Corporation (“Perini”), a publicly–traded construction services corporation, falsely and fraudulently reported that certain minority and disadvantaged business enterprises (“DBEs”) were performing subcontracted work on federally funded public works contracts with the City and State of New York, when in fact non–DBE subcontractors were performing the work. Pursuant to the settlement, Perini has paid the United States $9,750,000. The settlement does not constitute an admission of liability by Perini.
    But you still haven't answered a single one of my question in your endless parade of blogs. How do they not meet standards? Why shouldn't they be allowed to do the job if they not only meet the standards but are also cheaper? There isn't a single blog from the examiner or whatever other nonsensical airheaded blog that will answer those questions.

    Yea ok I'm sure the fact that the bidding rules were changed at the last minute so the least technically competent company with a history of fraud and racketeering could bid was just a coincidence.
    Smarmy little replies won't get you off the fire. Prove Feinstein helped in changing the rules otherwise you've got nothing like all the other little blogs and backseat journalists you've cited.

    His company wasn't allowed to bid on the project until the rules were changed at the last minute
    As his company was one of 5 companies to be considered AND SUBMIT A BID IN A SEALED ENVELOPE, that is demonstratively false.

    What part of a rampant history of FRAUD, CORRUPTION, and RACKETEERING do you not understand? Why award taxpayer dollars to a company that has committed fraud and overcharged taxpayers in the past? Why alter the rules at the last minute to award this company a 1billion dollar contract? I will sig bet you right now this project goes over budget by millions.

    Just because the company bids at a specific price doesn't mean that's what the project is going to cost taxpayers.
    Actually, that's more than likely what it will cost tax payers considering:

    1. Cost of similar projects.
    2. Project cost overruns.

    Sig bet you? I don't play for sigs. I play money and bragging rights. Here is what I'll bet you though: 1 platinum donation, exile from the forum. I win, you make a platinum donation and leave the forum. I lose, I do the same.

    Now here are the rules to be met in order to win:

    1. You have to prove Feinstein had a role in changing the rules (as that was your original claim).
    2. Project has to cost substantially more than 10% of projected costs (10% is pretty standard in budget overruns). I'd say considering all your false claiming and blog citing that you should show it will run over 50% of projected costs.

    Here is what I will have to meet in order to win.

    1. Show that final project costs are far less than similar competitors (ie. project will have to cost more than 300 million less than the $1.4B bid made by competitors.
    2. Show Tutor-Perini did not have a role in changing the rules.

    As was pointed out in the previous post (which you ignored) this same company overcharged the city of LA by millions on a previous contract.
    I looked up "Tutor-Peririni" overcharged LA, found nothing on the matter other than people giving their opinion. Why is it that it's only in opinions that he "overcharged" anyone?

    Laughable. The fact that you continue to shill for this obvious cronyism and corruption speaks volumes. This is just par for the course for Feinstein and her corrupt husband.

    EXCLUSIVE: Senator's husband's firm cashes in on crisis - Washington Times



    I'm sure it was just a coincidence

    Uproar Grows as Sen. Feinstein’s Husband Profits from Post Office Privatization | Accuracy.Org

    Army contract for Feinstein's husband / Blum is a director of firm that will get up to $600 million - SFGate

    Don't worry I'm sure it's all just a coincidence
    4 posts and you still can't answer:

    Why is it that the best cost per mile and meeting technical standards is considered "corruption"?

    Bronson, you're arguing against your own sources and scrambling for opinions from blogs faster than you answer the original question:

    1. Does this company NOT meet technical standards?
    2. Did this company and any related parties play a role in changing the rules?
    3. How does the ruling body changing the rules to include both cost per mile and safety standards equal corruption?

    You can't answer those simple questions and it seems none of your blogs can either. Maybe you should try using less red font, less blogs and maybe come up with something other than weak assumptions to substantiate your low level bias?
    Last edited by Hatuey; 05-01-13 at 09:39 AM.
    I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality. - MLK

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    Re: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    Quote Originally Posted by Bronson View Post
    Just a coincidence I'm sure.

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    Re: Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s husband wins CA rail contract (985M)

    Quote Originally Posted by Hatuey View Post
    The other companies. Try and keep up.
    Except Blum's company has a history of bidding low and then flooding the project with change orders, causing costs to skyrocket. Do try and keep up.

    Wrong see previous posts. Are you a paid shill?

    But you still haven't answered a single one of my question in your endless parade of blogs. How do they not meet standards? Why shouldn't they be allowed to do the job if they not only meet the standards but are also cheaper? There isn't a single blog from the examiner or whatever other nonsensical airheaded blog that will answer those questions.
    LA Times and WAPO are blogs? Who knew

    Smarmy little replies won't get you off the fire. Prove Feinstein helped in changing the rules otherwise you've got nothing like all the other little blogs and backseat journalists you've cited.
    It's been proven she changed the rules before to funnel her husband's company millions of dollars in the past. I'm sure this time it was just a coincidence or something

    As his company was one of 5 companies to be considered AND SUBMIT A BID IN A SEALED ENVELOPE, that is demonstratively false.
    The rules were altered at the last minute so this company (which has a proven track record of overcharging, committing fraud and other abuses) would qualify. Are you a paid shill?

    Actually, that's more than likely what it will cost tax payers considering:

    1. Cost of similar projects.
    2. Project cost overruns.

    Sig bet you? I don't play for sigs. I play money and bragging rights. Here is what I'll bet you though: 1 platinum donation, exile from the forum. I win, you make a platinum donation and leave the forum. I lose, I do the same.
    DEAL

    Now here are the rules to be met in order to win:

    1. You have to prove Feinstein had a role in changing the rules (as that was your original claim).
    2. Project has to cost substantially more than 10% of projected costs (10% is pretty standard in budget overruns). I'd say considering all your false claiming and blog citing that you should show it will run over 50% of projected costs.

    Here is what I will have to meet in order to win.

    1. Show that final project costs are far less than similar competitors (ie. project will have to cost more than 300 million less than the $1.4B bid made by competitors.
    2. Show Tutor-Perini did not have a role in changing the rules.
    Sorry you don't get to make the rules. It's your contention the rules were altered at the last minute and they won the bid only because they have the lowest bid, despite having the lowest technical qualifications and a history of fraud/overcharging. If this project goes over budget, and it surely will after this company floods the project with change orders, you lose and it will be

    I looked up "Tutor-Peririni" overcharged LA, found nothing on the matter other than people giving their opinion. Why is it that it's only in opinions that he "overcharged" anyone?
    MTA Wins $29 Million From Subway Contractor - Los Angeles Times

    Construction giant Tutor-Saliba Corp. was ordered Wednesday to pay more than $29.5 million for assorted acts of business misconduct related to Los Angeles' long-troubled subway system, a damage award that could hamper the firm's ability to land future public works jobs.

    Although less than the $41 million sought by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the hefty amount awarded by a Los Angeles Superior Court jury is still a bitter disappointment for officials at Tutor-Saliba, one of the largest contractors in the state. The verdict blemishes the reputation of the well-known contractor and could make it more difficult for the company to land contracts for the massive airport, rail and other public projects that are its hallmark.
    4 posts and you still can't answer:

    Why is it that the best cost per mile and meeting technical standards is considered "corruption"?

    Bronson, you're arguing against your own sources and scrambling for opinions from blogs faster than you answer the original question:

    1. Does this company NOT meet technical standards?
    2. Did this company and any related parties play a role in changing the rules?
    3. How does the ruling body changing the rules to include both cost per mile and safety standards equal corruption?

    You can't answer those simple questions and it seems none of your blogs can either. Maybe you should try using less red font, less blogs and maybe come up with something other than weak assumptions to substantiate your low level bias?
    Yea I'm sure Feinstein's husband's company being awarded a billion dollar railway project paid for by taxpayers is just a coincidence or something.

    It's not like she has used her influence in the past to funnel his company millions at taxpayer expense or anything. Oh wait, she has

    News & Culture in CA | Dianne Feinstein resigns

    SEN. Dianne Feinstein has resigned from the Military Construction Appropriations subcommittee. As previously and extensively reviewed in these pages, Feinstein was chairperson and ranking member of MILCON for six years, during which time she had a conflict of interest due to her husband Richard C. Blum's ownership of two major defense contractors, who were awarded billions of dollars for military construction projects approved by Feinstein.
    Changing the rules at the last minute without any oversight for a company with a history of FRAUD and OVERCHARGING is questionable at best. Before the rules were altered this company did not meet the standards necessary to qualify for a bid.

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