Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Apparently no interest in a third-party buyer for Laurelwood

Following up on yesterday's post pertaining to Laurelwood housing contract supplements, NOPE's secondary request for documentation (i.e. bids, discussions, email) from the Dept. of Navy pertaining to whether the Navy considered a third-party buyout of Laurelwood came up empty.

NOPE was concerned that the cash-strapped DoN could circumvent its withdrawn Laurelwood EIS and get an outside party (i.e. another privately-held military housing player, like Balfour-Beatty, which operates other housing developments at NWS Earle) to fund the buyout in exchange for the 300 homes, and repurpose them for other uses. That evidently is not the case, if our FOIA findings are legit.

Again, NOPE will remain active in this case until Laurelwood is bought out and the homes demolished.

Monday, August 16, 2010

New FOIA Documents from Navy on Laurelwood housing contract

Following up on our June 4, 2010 posting, NOPE late last week received copies of the most recent accessible (via Freedom of Information Act) supplements to the Laurelwood housing lease at NWS Earle.

Supplemental Agreements (SA) 65 through 71, from February 2008 through October 2009, at first glance, were run-of-the-mill changes to the 1990 privatized housing agreement between the Department of Navy and Laurelwood Homes, LLC, that pale in comparison to the controversial SA 43 that bolstered NOPE's case against civilian housing at Earle. Nonetheless, here is what we gleaned from the "new" documents:
  • SA 65 (February 2008): Perhaps the most interesting of the latest lot, appears to put to rest the "award fee payments" to Laurelwood Homes, LLC, which as we chronicled generally amounted to bonuses up to $15k semiannually, to reflect the Navy's satisfaction with upkeep of the homes.
  • SA 66 (April 2008): Amended the annual rent payment to Laurelwood Homes, LLC, to $3.59 million, reflecting the Consumer Price Index annual adjustment in the maintenance rent.
  • SA 69 (May 2009): Amended the annual rent payment to Laurelwood Homes, LLC, to $3.63 million, again reflecting an inflationary increase as specified in the original contract.
The aforementioned documents appear to validate our business case analysis through the May 1, 2010, expiration of the military use phase of the 52-year Laurelwood housing lease, but in the event the parties fail to reach a buyout agreement by the September 30 "whisper date," NOPE will request further documentation from the DoN (via FOIA) to see whether the DoN paid more rent money to Laurelwood at the start of the "outlease," or the time during which the houses sat idle ahead of proposed, and now scrapped, civilian occupancy of the Laurelwood houses.