Fargo based Kaler-Doeling, PLLP set to uncover decade of lies?

by Timothy Charles Holmseth

All eyes are on Kaler-Doeling.

The East Grand Forks City Council voted Tuesday to bring the Fargo-based law firm to assist in the City’s efforts to recover payments from a large economic development loan that has gone unpaid for more than a decade.

The Council voted to hire Brad Sinclair, an attorney at Kaler Doeling, PLLP.

Attorney Brian Sinclair

Attorney Brian Sinclair

City Administrator David Murphy said the idea was brought to him by a couple of City Council members.

Attorney Sinclair will be picking up where EGF City Attorney Ronald Galstad left off on the EDHA loan investigation.

Galstad presented a basic timeline of events to the EDHA Board at May 27 meeting.
However – a close analysis of Galstad’s entire synopsis actually created new questions regarding what was occurring behind the scenes from 1999-2014.

It is widely hoped Attorney Sinclair will find answers to the following questions derived from Galstad’s May 27, 2014 narrative to the EDHA Board.

QUESTIONS

Statement: “In 2003 – June of 2003 – just prior to that in 2002 – Mr. Stauss, through Boardwalk Enterprises, LLP had received a, basically a tax delinquency notice, and it appears there must have been some discussion with Mr. Richter at that time,” Ronald Galstad said.

Analysis: Ronald Galstad did not elaborate on how he knew about the tax delinquency notice that Dan Stauss received. However – he knew Stauss received it, and said “it appears there must have been some discussion with Mr. Richter at that time”.

(Q) When and how did Ronald Galstad learn that Dan Stauss received a tax delinquency notice?

(Q) What did Roanld Galstad see or observe that caused him to say it “appears” there was “discussion” between Dan Stauss and Jim Richter?

* * * * *

Statement: “On June 3 of 2003 I sent a letter to Mr. Stauss amongst Gary Sander – the City Administrator – Mr. Richter – the Administrative Committee, because there was a project going on, on the Boardwalk – a paver project – and for some reason the Opp Construction hadn’t been paid a portion of that bill going to Boardwalk Enterprises so I asked that it be resolved or should we set up a meeting? … I tried to resolve it – it went to all the – it went to everybody that was the head of either the department – the City – or the engineering firm or the, uhhh, it appeared that it should have been resolved. But it looks like in that June date – that’s what triggered this discussion”.

Analysis: It is known Dan Stauss received a tax delinquency notice in 2002. It is also known Ronald Galstad sent a letter to a host of involved Parties in June of 2003.

(Q) What was Ronald Galstad doing in regards to the Boardwalk Enterprises loan between 2002 (when Dan Stauss received the tax delinquency notice) and June of 2003?

* * * * *

Statement: “I’ve also started trying to go through all the minutes of the Economic Development and Housing Authority – at this point I don’t see any other references to that loan – okay – on June 3 of 2003 I sent a letter to Mr. Stauss amongst Gary Sander – the City Administrator – Mr. Richter – the Administrative Committee, because there was a project going on, on the Boardwalk – a paver project – and for some reason the Opp Construction hadn’t been paid a portion of that bill going to Boardwalk Enterprises so I asked that it be resolved or should we set up a meeting? … I tried to resolve it – it went to all the – it went to everybody that was the head of either the department – the City – or the engineering firm or the, uhhh, it appeared that it should have been resolved. But it looks like in that June date – that’s what triggered this discussion”.

Analysis: Ronald Galstad does not state who contacted him about the paving project dispute. He does not state who brought that to his attention. His omission is suspicious. Nonetheless, the situation he attempts to solve would require him viewing the Developer’s Agreement.

(Q) Who contacted Ronald Galstad about the paving project dispute?

* * * * *

Statement: “In April of 2006 there was tax delinquencies that were going on because the building went into tax foreclosure – there was notices by the Polk County that went to Boardwalk Enterprises and Mr. Richter got involved at that time again and indicated there was a mistake in communication between the City and Mr. Stauss and the reason the taxes had not been paid in that five year time frame – there was actually a meeting in May of 2006 where Mr. Richter went in on behalf of the City and Mr. Stauss to the Polk County commission and requested the penalty and taxes be forgiven based upon the miscommunication. It appears from a newspaper article as well as the Minutes that the Polk County Commission at that time granted that request. There was a letter from the Auditor not too long after that the taxes that were owed were about $71,859.30,” Galstad said.

Analysis: Dan Stauss, Jim Richter, and Ronald Galstad all knew about the tax issue in 2002.

(Q) Why didn’t Ronald Galstad take measures to correct the problem?

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