Thursday, January 14, 2010

Standard-Examiner: Godfrey Seeks Business In China

Does Boss Godfrey think the Chinese are going to bring high paying jobs to Ogden?

By Biker Babe

Mayor Godfrey is off to China:
Godfrey seeks business in China
Godfrey: "O, you didn't get the memo? - I left today (Wednesday) to find businesses to come to Ogden. "

Chair Gochner: "I hope his trip is productive" [because all of his others have done nothing but cost us money]... after she read the email that he'd gone to China.

Does Boss Godfrey think the Chinese are going to bring high paying jobs to Ogden? Are these the scratch & dent & lead & cadmium & baby formula poison people he needs to fill up the eminent domain blight in the downtown?

Big question here: Do WE THE CITIZENS OF OGDEN want them? Who told him to go there? Who advised him on this? With folks quitting the Community & Economic Development Department right & left, is the typing staff qualified to offer such advice?

js

29 comments:

Moo Shoo Pork said...

Hell if I want to buy cheap Chinese made crap, I go to Wal-Mart.

The only problem, is that I have to go home and shower again, wasting water.

I attended Peter Corroon's announcement in Salt Lake on Tuesday. I was particularly impressed in his comments about nurturing our own local businesses rather than spending tax dollars to entice outside big businesses to come to our state. I thought, wow, direct opposite of our own hometown Mayor who likes to line the pockets of the big boys, ruining the business of the locals who haven’t had handouts and incentives.

I am disappointed that our little Mayor is off vacationing around the world looking for ways to save the totaly screwed up mess that he has created.

I hope he finds a high adventure fireworks manufacturer to relocate to Ogden's Washington Boulevard, it could be a great replacement for the outdoor companies heading to Layton.

Danny said...

The city council deserves some blame for sending Godfrey to China for what we all know is really a free vacation.

Year after year, they give him our money to waste on these things. They need to exert far greater control over Godfrey's spending than they do.

Curmudgeon said...

Hmmmmm.... Now how would I have headlined this story?

Republican Mayor Seeks ChiCom Business For Ogden -- Red State Mayor Seeks Deal With Red Chinese --- Utah Eagle Forum To Demand Godfrey Recall?

[Sorry. Couldn't resist...]

Fireman Joe said...

$2000 for a six day international vacation? Mr. Mayor your lips are moving again.

what will it cost us said...

I agree that the City Coucil doesn't have a clue where the mayor shuffles money around to fund his pet projects. They enable him to raise water/sewer rates yet how much revenue does the city actually bring in. If the tax shortfall from the state is over $1M less tax than same time frame last year how will they make up the difference.

An independent audit starting with those services that bring in revenue and how it is used should be first for the new council. I don't think they can rely on just trust me the figues are correct from the administration.

I also understand the police department is under orders to bring in more revenue via tickets and violations. The city started a scam to make every fender bender require a police action, if you don't wait around after exchanging insurance information you are fined. So minor fender benders have to wait around for a patrol car to show up. I guess that is a way to generate income while gangs and drive bys don't generate any money to police.

Jennifer Neil said...

First it's high adventure outdoors quality business ... then it's scratch & dent ... then it's a little gov't $$$ to spruce up the buildings .... then it's eminent domain ... now it's off to China to lure {{what}} to Ogden downtown ... something is rotten in the [city of Ogden] ... and I don't think Heaven is directing this one, Horatio.

TLJ

blackrulon said...

It would have been smart to consult with the city council prior to departing on the trip. Common goals and solicting input on objectives would have gone a long way to ease tensions with the city council. What types of business are we trying to bring to Ogden? What will it cost in way of busness and tax incentives? How will we be able to determine if the trip was a success? Who will he meet with? These would have been nice to learn before departing on a surprise trip.

Jennifer Neil said...

BR - exactly right! communication and transparency! He can in no way blame this one on the council ... he did not communicate, would not disclose and kept it a secret until he was already booked, locked and loaded.

TLJ

fines and fees are we, welcome to Ogden said...

Comment moved to front page

ozboy said...

"He is going to China to see what types of retail goods are available for some of the space we have," or so sayeth McConkie - the mojo's mouth piece.

Well, what a lame ass excuse for a free vacation! "Moo Shoo Pork" - in the above comment - said it all. Hell, if the dumb little pecker head wanted to know what kind of cheap junk Chiner had to offer he could have taken his little tax payer sponsored vacation at the nearest WallMart!

So our very own biz genius is two losses for two foreign vacations so far. This one will most likely take the loser's record to 3 and O. Every thing the moron touches turns to crap, why would this boondoggle be any different?

More proof that idiocy reigns on nine!

Curmudgeon said...

Black Rulon:

You nailed it.

Interesting that the SE made the mayor's quick and un-announced departure a key element of the story. Recall, this is the SE that bought into Hizzonah's fairy tale about his office being always open, his willingness, nay eagerness to communicate with the Council leadership, and how whatever failures to communicate occurred could and should be laid at the door of Council Chairwoman Wicks.

So now we have a new Council Chair. A new beginning. A chance for Hizzonah to establish the good rapport he and the SE editors assured us he has long longed to establish. And what happens? An email to the new Council chair on the day he heads out.

Wonder if the SE will do an editorial on this. If it does, I trust this time it will not drink the Godfrey Administration Kool Aid as it did last time, and find a way to place the blame on Ms. Gochnour. I trust this time we won't be reading something like this: "The Council's new Chair had the opportunity to visit the Mayor any time in the previous week to inquire if, perchance, Hizzonah intended to flee the country on the public's money any time soon. But she choose not to, leaving a disappointed Mayor to reach out at the last minute via email to communicate with her instead."

I hope, too, this time, the SE news editors will open their little pocket calendars and mark on them six months from today "do story on business, if any, Mayor brought back from China." Not betting on it, though. We shall see.

Amy Wicks said...

The Mayor met with the Council on Tuesday evening for our regularly scheduled council/mayor monthly discussion. That would have been a perfect opportunity to discuss upcoming projects or important events.

Not a word about the trip to China was uttered.

So much for open communication.

Curmudgeon said...

Councilwoman Wicks:

So, you admit you had a chance Tuesday to ask him if he planned to skip the country on the public's dime anytime soon, and you didn't! Hah! At last the truth comes out!

[grin]

Biker Babe said...

I'm wondering if it might be prudent and conducive to opening the communication process by asking the mayor a simple yes/no question about: upcoming trips, business ventures, contracts being drawn up, etc ... every time he's in a meeting, or crosses paths with one or more (preferably at least two) council members ... a yes/no answer may prompt more dialogue but at least you have the yes or the no ... and make sure someone makes note of it.

js,

BB

Colonel Jessup said...

It is all the council fault for not asking him, if he was going anywhere.
they were suppose to ask you know.
if they didn't ask, then they didn't communicate.

Curmudgeon said...

Hmmmm... I wonder if Col Jessup is angling for a spot on the SE editorial board? [grin]

Travel agent said...

Once a year the City Council has the opportunity to attend the League of Cities convention (usually held in a far away city). Cook usually attends and many of the Council.

I wonder if they communicate their intentions, in advance, to the Mayor of his staff so they can be "transparent" and receive his input on what to discuss at that convention.

Granted, the LOC convention ain't China, but isn't the principal (sp?) the same thing?

Biker Babe said...

Travel agent:
you didn't give an instance where the city council or Mr. Cook actually neglected to inform the mayor of a League of Cities meeting ... speculation based on? What if? Here we have the entire room full of people at the monthly council/mayor monthly discussion witnessing not a peep about a trip to China the very next day

js (just sayin'),

BB

Curmudgeon said...

TA:

That convention is an annual event, much publicized to city administrations well in advance. To liken it to Hizzonah deciding to flee the country with no notice on the public's dime for an [alleged] week-long business scouting trip to Red China seems a stretch to me.

The Council is a part time, not a full time, governing body. Under the Mayor/Council form of government in Utah, the Mayor is the city's CEO and full-time administrator. While the Mayor has, and should have, a travel budget for things like business development trips, etc., the question people are raising here is: did he have some obligation to inform the Council of his plans to be out of town [and across an ocean] for a week. Seems to me, common sense and common courtesy to Council members both suggest that the did.

Biker Babe said...

Curm,

didn't I just say that?

js,
BB

[grin]

curious 1 said...

Will he be hiking the Appalachian Trail while he is gone?

disgusted said...

Two comments in the SE article just blew me away.

First, that the mayor apparently is now saying that he now has another business plan for downtown Ogden, that of “a world market” business concept for Washington Blvd. Is this Godfrey’s admission of failure on his “high adventure capital” business concept? Surely the city is not going to throw away the high adventure concept along with all of the money the city has spent to this point and start over? He can not logically think that the two concepts can co-exist in such a small area. This conflict of concepts leads me to doubt his people’s explanation for his trip.

Second, that he’s going to China to see what types of retail goods are available for some of the space we have. Is the city now going to go into the retail business? This explanation is inconsistent with the duties of the mayor of Ogden and just shows how out of touch he is with his actual responsibilities. Is anyone out there really buying this garbage?

Call it what you want but the fact is this is just another boondoggle on Ogden City resident’s money. Only one question left to ask, did he take his wife and are we paying for her too? I can assure you that if she accompanied him on this trip that there is very little if any business getting done. The Chinese businessmen are all about business and real business isn’t what happens when you have your wife in tow.

This guy is a piece of work.

Travel agent said...

BB-
I wasn't aware that there's a "monthly council/mayor monthly discussion" session. I believe there's a weekly Leadership/Mayor meeting (usually Thursday around noon) and there are "work sessions" prior to Council Meetings, but a "monthly council/mayor discussion" session? When did that start?

Curm, I wasn't "likening" the LOC conference to Godfrey's China trip. I was assimilating that neither Cook or the Council will tell the Mayor when they go away on trips to the Mayor not telling the Council or its Director where or when he goes on a trip. No big deal here, except for the fact that it probably would be nice for each body to share with the other as to City business trips.

And it's well within the pervue of each branch of City Government to do it this way, even though it would be better for both to inform the other....and the public.

But you and everyone else knows that ain't about to happen....even though it should.

No surprise; just more fodder to post about. Ho-humm. Maybe MG will bring back a kite making business.

Biker Babe said...

Travel Agent:

Councilwoman Wicks mentioned the monthly Council/Mayor discussion session in her above post ... she might have more information about the scheduling and history of such events, since she's been there.

js,

BB

get er' done said...

didn't Godfrey get beat up while in Europe the last time he was there? I will try to find the article and post it.

Travel agent said...

Yeah, the WCF blog took him to task on that one. Wasn't Petersen involved to some degree? Didn't MG go over there to take a gander at the gondolas (REAL gondolas that ferry skiers from those quaint alpine villiages to the mountain tops)? Never could figure out how anyone thought that this flatland monstrosity, that was to "link" Downtown to the East Bench and then to the West facing ski resort, could in any way resemble the REAL DEAL one finds in Europe.

It's good that this idea has found the back burner.

It does seem, however, that no matter how much beating the WCF dishes out, MG still seems to get elected. One of these times, we'll have to find a REAL opponent and give the guy a run for his money.

What will it cost us said...

Who else went along with him on this trip, paid or unpaid? For any public funds I was responsable for a detailed report on my trip to quantify my spending of said funds.

The Chinese are looking at real estate where they can turn a profit or show return on investment. With Real Estate being down in Ogden and Utah a simple google search will give them the real data, not some pipe dream from a bad politician trying to get them to invest.

They will do some research and see how the mayor has alienated the Hof Festival, Sister City status, not working with the City Council, cutting funds for Union Station and historical buildings.

Biker Babe said...

If the Chinese want ROI for real estate, they need some schooling on keeping apartment high-rises upright !

They just keep showing the world what they can do when they put their shoulder to the wheel and get to work, don't they?

Wonder if the Mayor was apartment-hunting on his trip ...

js,
BB

AWM said...

Not sure what "retail product" the mayor could bring over here from China that isn't already available through a major big box store. Much like the fact he couldn't find somebody for the river project not connected to Gadi, I find it hard to believe that he couldn't find something "Made in the USA" to bring here. Americans are some of the most patriotic people on the planet, that is, until they are forced to chose between patriotism and the dollar in their wallet. We brought it on ourselves...even our mayors are now going to China on bended knee. Hope he gets some good pictures of the wall though.

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