City Council meeting minutes 12-18-06: "Jim Gerber expressed concern that he conducted research on the Windego Park Society (WPS) and went to several charity databases trying to find information on the Society. He went to a charity review board and five different websites and was not able to find any information regarding the WPS. He questioned if the Society is a private society or a true nonprofit organization."
This concern was not answered. Comments from the inbox reflect that issue. "If it is not properly constituted, what happens to the tax deductible status of donations?" "What happens to the business or individual donating to a bogus group and then finds themselves in trouble with the IRS?" "Do they have a right to seek recourse from the city? The city basically accepted WPS as a legitimate entity with which to enter into a lease agreement, lending credibility.
Other comments being sent in: What has this cost the city staff, city manager, Carl Anderson and Phil Rice in credibility to ignore basic sound concerns by citizens? Does this set the standard now for other things brought forward. Will we now just ignore financials, credibility of applicants and just "give things a shot"? The natives get nervous when common sense seems to be abandoned by leadership. We wonder what else is whacked?
Many agreed with Jim Gerber's letter to the editor: If this is done: WPS is not the best, most credible, qualified or experienced to do it. Also there is a calling for a professional evaluation of this city owned property, which has been blocked by Bjorn and his salesman. Is there a better use for the property? Better sites for an amphitheater? (End of Harrison and Library area have been suggested -both having none of the access, parking, noise liabilities.)
The lack of credibility of WPS in regards to financial accountability does not bode well for ongoing public contributions and commitments. The high ratio of expenses to money raised ($20,000 to raise $25,000 with a balance of $5,000) is a huge red flag.
The perception in the community of Windego as a Skogquist family non-profit is extremely problematic. Especially as the boys seem to be unemployed or under-employed. (mother Barb Thurston is a postal worker).
Credibility: "Mr. Erik Skogquist stated the Society has been successful as of right now without really having a project." What about the three year past due historic rescue schoolhouse sitting unfinished in St. Francis with WPS on the weathered sign? Is Erik Skogquist , president of WPS, ignorant of this seemingly abandoned project?