Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Lone Star College Bond–Are Taxpayers Being Used?

Are the taxpayers being used in the Lone Star College 2013 Bond Election?

Look at the evidence – then decide for yourself….

First, make a quick list of who benefits financially when the voters pass a $500 million education construction bond for the Lone Star College System (LSCS):
  • Architects
  • Construction companies/contractors
  • Engineers
  • Attorneys
  • Real Estate Companies

Second, take a look at the LSCS web page updating the last bond issue in 2008. Notice  two firms listed who gained financially from the bond were:

1. Joiner Partnership  and
2. Perspectiva

LSCS 2008 bond list

Third, take a close look at two of the expensive 4-color –multifold mailers voters have received concerning the 2013 LSCS Bond Election. Notice two important details:

1. Who is listed on the return address?
2. Who paid for the ad?

AD #1

LSCS citizens for lscs mailer front LSCS citizens for lscs mailer back
The return address: 700  Rockmead Dr Ste 265  just happens to be JOINER PATNERSHIP, the same company listed on the LSCS 2008 bond web page.

And the ad was paid for by Citizens for Lone Star College System whose treasurer is non other than Carl Joiner, the PRESIDENT of JOINER PARTNERSHIP.

AD #2

LSCS citizens to re-elect mailer front LSCS citizens to re-elect mailer back
The return address: 2500 E TC Jester, STE 309 is listed as COLLABORATE ARCHITECTS.

The ad was paid for by Citizens to Re-Elect LSCS Trustees  whose treasurer is Saul Valentin.

But both persons listed as “Founding Principals” in  Collaborate Architects - Saul Valentin and Martin Needle  are also listed as “Executive Vice Presidents” of  PERSPECTIVA, the same company listed on the LSCS 2008 Bond web page.

The photographs of the two men are  not only exactly the same on both sites, but they both have the exact same titles with each company.

And both company websites show the exact same project photo.

But even more interesting is a look at the campaign financial reports filed with LSCS by both PACs on April 11, 2013. They appear to be written by the same person.

LSCS citizens to re-elect finance report 4.11.13 pg 1

Citizens to Re-Elect
LSCS Trustees
Saul Valentin

LSCS citizens for lscs finance report 4.11.13 pg 1

Citizens for Lone Star
College System
Carl A Joiner
Joiner Partnerships

Not only that, page 2 shows both PACs used the same Notary Public on the same day. And it appears to be Saul Valentin’s wife Lisa.

LSCS citizens to re-elect financial report pg 2

Citizens to Re-Elect
LSCS Trustees
Saul Valentin

LSCS citizens for lscs financial report pg 2

Citizens for Lone Star
College System
Carl A Joiner
Joiner Partnerships

Both treasurers of these PACs live OUTSIDE LSCS boundaries. Valentin lives within HCC and Joiner lives in Galveston County.

And when you look at the donations made to the PACs and the incumbent trustees, it certainly appears that this election is NOT about education. It appears to simply be about $500 million in construction contracts.

As of 4/11/13, a total of $87,500 in donations was reported by the two PACs and the three incumbent trustees running for re-election.

$ 65,500 –or about 75% – was donated by persons who could possibly end up financially benefiting from the bond funds.

$ 27,500.00
$ 25,500.00
LSCS Connected-
Education Foundation
$ 12,650.00
$ 12,500.00
#   2,000.00
Real Estate
$   1,350.00
$   6,000.00
In sharp contrast. All other candidates COMBINED reported a total of $ 593.33 in campaign donations. That equals LESS than 1% of the PAC’s and incumbent's funds.

Other interesting reading is the list of persons employed with LCSC that donated to Citizens to Re-Elect LSCS  Trustees PAC.

  • LSC- North Harris President – $ 250
  • LSCS Senior Vice Chancellor – $ 300
  • Husband of LSC Tomball President – $ 500
  • LSCS Foundation Executive Director – $ 1,000
  • LSCS Vice Chancellor – $ 500
  • LSCS President  -  $ 500
  • Special Assistant to the Chancellor/Board Liaison – $ 200

Though perfectly legal, is it very ethical for the Special Assistant to the Chancellor – the person LSCS hires to keep the public informed  about this election -  to publically show sides by donating to the incumbents’ PAC?

Though again perfectly legal, could the reason LSCS does NOT post campaign financial documents online for all to see be because they don’t want the public to know where the money is coming from? Or at least not know until AFTER the election is OVER?

Now that you’ve seen the evidence, what do you think?

Is this LSCS election about EDUCATION or  about CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTS?

All I can say is……

If it looks like a rat……and it smells like a rat……..it just might be a RAT.

You can read the full election financial reports I received via public information requests to LSCS concerning the May 11, 2013 Election below.


Incumbent Trustee Campaigns

Other Trustee Campaigns

Because the opponents couldn’t afford to send multicolored mailings to the voters in LSCS, you can read more from opponents of the this bond election at the links below:


Do your homework. Make up your own mind. And be sure to VOTE on Saturday, May 11, 2013.

Find information about Harris County polling locations to vote on Saturday, May 11, 2013: Here

Colleen Vera


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