The City of Albuquerque is left holding the bag again, thanks to the irresponsible actions of the City’s Nuisance Abatement Team. The team has several APD officers assigned to it as well as a few inspectors. The team was being overseen by Pete Dinelli who is an attorney and former City Councilor. According to the Journal report (see here), “A federal judge's ruling that the city has engaged in overzealous enforcement of its nuisance abatement ordinance — resulting in the eviction of some residents without a hearing beforehand.”
The City’s Nuisance Abatement Ordinance was one of the items that former Mayor Marty Chavez prided himself with.
According to the Journal, “U.S. District Judge James O. Browning found the city had failed to show sufficient evidence about whether the code violations in the challenged cases demonstrated an immediate danger to the lives and safety of the occupants — enough to turn people out of their homes without a warrant.”
According to the former City Attorney and now COA of Albuquerque, Rob Perry stated, "Really, what the problem is, oversight and supervision of this unit at the senior management levels was atrocious. ‘That's what permitted this to occur.’" Clearly Pete Dinelli was the Public Safety Director at the time and Ray Schultz was the Chief of Police. Dinelli is gone but Schultz is still here and costing the tax payers big bucks.
Interesting enough, “Perry defended the work of police and code enforcement officers, and said the high-profile evictions that generated headlines and TV coverage weren't necessarily sound policy. ‘Here's the reality: (They) weren't lawyers, but you know what? The former public safety director was, and the former mayor was. And they have to take a certain responsibility for the policies they implemented,’" he said.
Perry spoke condescending about Dinelli and Chavez, but not a word about one of the “Good Ol’ Boys” like Schultz, who is considered part of the City’s “senior management.” Why is Perry willing to shove Dinelli and Chavez under the bus and let Chief Schultz skate by on this one too? You will have to decide that question on your own.
Now Darren White is the Public Safety Director. It looks like the City of Albuquerque “jumped from the pan into the fire.” Way to go Berry.
The Suit was filed by Joe and Shannon Kennedy on behalf of Kevin Lowery and others, a class that they estimate includes roughly 200 individuals or families. The Eye is sure that the Kennedy's will be expecting a huge settlement which has become common when dealing with anything Schultz has his hand in.
The Eye On Albuquerque reported on the abatement team back in July of 2009. The Eye stated in the story, “If we are going to have a nuisance abatement unit, it better have strict procedures and be monitored closely for potential abuse (see here).” But apparently the City did not adhere to our warning then either.
Quote of the Day
Does this sound familiar? This is right from the dictionary and seems to describe Albuquerque, Berry and Schultz. Fascism (f ash ,izem) noun An authoritarian right wing system of government and/or social organization. (in general use) extreme right wing, authoritarian, chauvinistic and/or intolerant views or practices. Fascism tends to include a belief in the supremacy of one group over another, national, ethnic, especially social strata or monetarily; a contempt for democracy, an insistence on obedience to a powerful leader, and a strong demagogic approach. Compliments of one of our Eyes