Campaign 2010

Jun 17, 2009

As Inland Empire Faces Tough Economy, Representative Ken Calvert Making Money from Shady Land Deal

Congratulations, Representative Ken Calvert!


While unemployment in Riverside County hovers around 12 percent, the Inland Empire continues to be shaken by the housing crisis and the price of gas has risen for the 50th day in a row, Ken Calvert's poised to make some money.


With a vote yesterday to change the zoning on a property Calvert acquired in a shady land deal, the way has been cleared for Calvert and his partners to build their planned storage facility.  According to press reports, the value of the land has likely now risen.


"Now, even though his constituents in the Inland Empire are facing tough times, Ken Calvert's poised to benefit financially from the land he got in a shady deal that avoided a competitive bidding process," said Andy Stone, Western Regional Press Secretary for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.  "Can Ken Calvert be trusted to put the interests of his constituents ahead of his own financial gain?"


Calvert says he was a silent partner in the $1.2 million deal to acquire a plot of land near new residential construction to build self-storage units.


But a grand jury found that the Jurupa Community Services District sold the property to Calvert and his partners without first offering it to other public agencies, as required by law.  That means Calvert and his partners were able to buy a plot of land, close to the freeway, in a booming real estate market - with no competitive bidding.


And the lawsuit goes even a step further calling the land sale "actual fraud, corruption and actual malice" and alleges that the land was sold to Calvert - who had previously supported federal legislation benefiting the Jurupa Community Services District - and his partners as a way to "further curry political favor, relations and influence."