Mayor Makes more Promises Concerning HYPE.

The Mayor met with AAPAC to get that organizations endorsement a good thing in and of its self. Apparently while meeting with the endorsement committee the Mayor promised them that HYPE wouldn’t be paying property taxes starting in 2014. Hearing this Mr. Abdel-Hak ( my husband) didn’t believe what the Mayor said you see in the past the Mayor promised the same thing to HYPE. I looked every where online to see if I could find any news about a settlement between the City and HYPE. Nothing I didn’t recall anything being said at council meetings so he decided to go and ask at council on July 23, 2013.

The answer was this is in litigation and a tax tribunal has been set for January 2014. When ever there is any type of legal action against the city, city officials can not talk about it. That’s what I’ve been told and witnessed at more then one council meeting. Confusing right? Not really if you follow the Mayor and his endless lies it’s just more lip-service.
Any agreement/settlement made by the city, city council approves it. How than is this man making promises he has no authority to? Easy he doesn’t care. Say what he thinks they want to hear get the endorsement if re-elected well who cares what happens after that. By then he’ll have gotten what he wanted and to hell with any promises made during the campaign. There are hundreds of thousands of dollars on the line the very existence of this organizations survival is at stack. It’s a sick and twisted game the mayor is playing and it takes a very cruel and conniving person to play these games.
HYPE is a wonderful organization and a real asset to the City of Dearborn Heights this organization offers so much to the public.

Councilwoman Badalow (candidate for Mayor) all so met with AAPAC endorsement committee I asked her if she was asked about HYPE? Yes, but had to tell them that she was sorry she couldn’t talk about HYPE because it was in litigation.

According to The Arab American News the Mayor did get the endorsement of AAPAC.

Mayor for the City of Dearborn Heights

Dan Paletko

Paletko is currently the mayor of Dearborn Heights. Paletko has a long history of public service. Before winning election to the Michigan House of Representatives, Mayor Paletko was a longtime member of the Dearborn Heights City Council.

Mayor Paletko is retired from Ford Motor Company, where he was a financial manager. He is a certified public accountant and holds degrees from the University of Michigan, University of Detroit and Wayne State University. He has two daughters, Marie and Ann.

The Mayors words carry with them weight promises he makes are promises from a Mayor of a City. I’m not a fan of the Mayor those that come here know this, but even this surprised me. Knowing all that I do of what the man is capable of doing I never thought he could, or would do this it’s a shame.

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31 thoughts on “Mayor Makes more Promises Concerning HYPE.”

  1. Grandma Suzanne says:
    AUGUST 16, 2013 AT 1:15 PM
    Working on AAPAC comment.

    Any news? Are they endorsing for the general election?

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  2. Grandma Suzanne,

    Any news from AAPAC regarding the mayor promises? Any minutes? Are they doing another round of endorsements for the general election?

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  3. I am currently looking into this situation regarding AAPAC and the mayor and have corresponded with one member and am now in the process of corresponding with a person who was actually at that meeting. When I get all my ducks in a row I will post what I found out on this site.

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  4. Councilwoman Horvath,

    “Voila says:
    JULY 30, 2013 AT 6:22 PM

    Dear Marge,

    So what is the penalty for discussing that matter if any?”

    Do you know? or you don’t want to put the mayor on the spot?

    Just answer the question.

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  5. Dearborn heights,

    Any further information from AAPAC regarding this matter? Did they confirm or deny that the mayor promise them that no taxes on HYPE in 2014?

    It’s odd that they endorse him for a primary we don’t have in Dearborn Heights. What that mean to you? Did they miss that or what?

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  6. Dearborn heights,

    Any further information from AAPAC regarding this matter? Did they confirm or deny that the mayor promise them that no taxes on HYPE in 2014?

    It’s odd that they endorse him for a primary we don’t have in Dearborn Heights. What that mean to you? Did they miss that or what?

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  7. Truthtelling, thank you for your excellent research and report. Almost every matter these days involves some sort of litigation, rendering our elected officials useless as it concerns enlightening the citizens as to what is going on.. However; concerned citizens working together and sharing can get to the bottom of these matters. We need to do this more often.

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  8. Hello to all of you,
    I researched this matter and reviewed the HUD/NSP rules and regulation, here is my take:
    Let’s for a moment congratulate HYPE recreation center, and also give credit to the county and city officials who worked so hard to approve this project and allocated NSP funding to build this recreation center.
    If HYPE is a county project as some of you may believe, than no tax issues will exist, county properties and operations are exempt.
    This matter is confusing since the beginning, HYPE organization itself has no financial mean to embark on this huge and complex project.
    For the county to award them NSP funding, HYPE must be treated as a sub-recipient or a developer or both.
    If the county treat them as sub-recipient than the county will be directly responsible to follow up yearly with them and be responsible for reporting on the project for life of the project. And HYPE must follow all NSP/CDBG rules and regulations.
    If the county treats them as developer and according to:
    ” NSP Policy Alert! U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 1 Office of Block Grant Assistance 2012-06 Guidance on the Procurement of Developers and Subrecipients – June 1, 2012 This guidance supplements the NSP Policy Alert “Guidance on Developers, Subrecipients, and Contractors” updated on November 16, 2011 and expands on information from the NSP Policy Alert” Please goggle this site for more information.
    The following is applicable
    “Guidance on NSP-Eligible Acquisition & Rehabilitation Activities” published on December 11, 2009. “The relationship: A grantee entrusts a developer with funds to complete a project. Developers are not providing specific goods or services back to the grantee. Developers must have site control (ownership or lease in some cases) and must plan, obtain permits, and manage the project from start to finish, not just serve as contractors.”
    Therefore the county sold HYPE a portion of the park land. So HYPE will have a control. Wayne County Commission was not required to approve the sale. Lately the land was converted to a long time lease.
    HYPE becomes eligible as a developer after they have site control (ownership) and establishing their ability to plan, obtain permits, and manage the project from start to finish. Therefore they received the NSP funding as a developer. That was the first project of that magnitude for HYPE
    Let’s now come back to the tax issue:
    Please click and read the following:
    http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120720/METRO01/207200367
    By the way the tax issue is a very sample matter, the organization fill out an application and submits the supportive documentations on certain deadlines, similar to homeowner’s applications to establish tax status as homestead. The city will either accept or reject the application and normally ask for additional information to help them make the final decision.
    This recreation center is needed in north Dearborn Heights. Even HYPE is considerate as a county center.
    But why the city didn’t apply to receive NSP from the county to rebuild the Canfield Center?
    The city rushed and spent over $150,000.00 hard tax revenues on a recreation plan to rebuild the Canfield Center in 2009 anticipating funding for “shuffle Ready Projects.
    We still remember Mayor Paletko famous statements that he is working with “OBAMA TEAM”
    It was obvious at that time according to the published regulations that our chance was very slim.
    The city recreation department is capable of operating such center.
    We have a good relation with Wayne County and the county assisted the city with funding other recreational projects
    Our current and previous county commissioner doing a good job representing the interest of Dearborn Heights
    The city is eligible and capable as much as HYPY to tackle such project. (Not taken away from HYPE any capability or ability to administer that project-in fact they are doing good job)
    This project aim at serving the people as a public facility and qualify under that NSP/CDBG provision.
    Since the project objectives are public services in nature and not for profit. Why the city administration missed that opportunity?
    If HYPE end up not paying property taxes than the city taxpayers are financially supporting their activities.
    According to HYPE, they will not be able to stay in operation if they have to pay property taxes.
    What prevents other organizations from following HYPE steps and seek the same treatment from the city if they ended up getting the tax exemption?
    Mayor Paletko stated publicly multiple times that he has no authority over this matter and he is obligated to follow the state guidelines.
    According to Mr. AbdelHak during the council meeting public comments section on July 23, 2013, Mayor Paletko stated to AAPAC during his interview requesting their political endorsement that HYPE will not paying tax in 2014. The statement is not publically verified by AAPAC yet, and the mayor was advised by the city lawyer not to talk about the subject during that meeting. Since the issue is in litigation. (Understandable)
    Why than talk about it with AAPAC. The answer should be very sample Mr. Mayor: I can’t talk about this issue because it’s in litigation.
    Is the mayor statement to AAPAC (If verified) will in any way or shape help/not help HYPE getting the exempt status?
    Those questions are open to answers.
    Reality check: HYPE is in operation and providing needed services

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  9. Councilwoman Horvath, thank you for your statement, being open and honest trumps any “rule” in this matter.

    Tony, as an American Hungarian English grandmother of four very active grandsons who also live in Dearborn Heights I would like to give you a little information on HYPE..

    HYPE (Helping Youth to Progress and Excel) was built with HUD money amounting to about 7 million. HYPE bought the 7 acres of parkland (located in Dearborn Heights) from Wayne County for $1.00 back in 2009. The land HYPE sits on was formerly a site which housed an industry several decades ago that had contaminated the land. $1.00 might seem like a steal but it would have cost the county millions more to have to clean it up before selling it.

    Even though HYPE is exempt from federal income tax and is a registered federal nonprofit, the standards for property tax exemptions are different. An organization has to prove it is a charity and Dearborn Heights said the information provided by HYPE did not support that designation: although Mr. Sayed (founder of HYPE) says he filled out all the necessary forms.

    The unique fusion of athletics and academics is what separates HYPE from the pack. HYPE’s stated mission is “to create and strengthen infrastructures that support the positive development of Wayne County youth.” HYPE conducts training camps, leagues, and tournaments in various sports. It also provides free in-school and after-school social services to youth and their families.

    HYPE aims to help students grow in the classroom before they step foot on a court or athletic turf. Students are not able to play until the child’s daily homework gets started in one of the center’s state-of-the-art classrooms.

    A computer laboratory and library will aid the mental growth, and the center’s goal is to help families grow together. The cost to join, for a family of four, is $60 a month – hardly enough to support this center in its day-to-day operations.

    There are some 500Lb elephants sitting in the room that make HYPE an easy target; however, our children should not have to pay for them by the closing of this center

    (1) First the project was touted by the county economic development department when it was run by Turkia Mullin, whose departure to run Detroit Metro Airport mushroomed into scandal amid revelations of a federal probe into the Ficano administration.

    (2) The Wayne County Commissioners were not even aware that the selling of 7 acres of county parkland for $1.00 was taking place.

    (3) A former county aide was used as a construction consultant.

    (4) Federal officials criticized its use of a consultant whose spouse ran an engineering company that worked on the project.

    (5) HYPE is perceived by many people in Dearborn Heights as a place which only American Arabs and American Africans can use. This of course is untrue as it is open to all.

    I don’t know about the rest of you but any organization that helps our youth “progress and excel” in the difficult world we live in should not only be tax exempt in all areas but should be receiving tax money. This is a good program and our children should not have to pay for any mistakes real or perceived that were made in its formation. I truly believe that Mr. Sayed (founder of HYPE) had and has, only the good of our children in mind. He is to be commended and not punished. If this organization is allowed to fall the ones punished the most would be our children.

    If anyone had any first-hand experiences that might refute what I feel about HYPE, please feel free to post them.

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  10. Yes, we are in litigation with them. We should not discuss anything in public concerning this situation. I’m probably violating some rule just replying to you but oh well the public needs to know.

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  11. The HYPE is another scam and should not be taxed exempt. The property was given to them on taxpayer’s dollars and who even knows who paid to build the place. The HYPE Center is a business and should be treated as one.

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  12. Thank You Councilwoman Horvath, for directing me to the specific section I have copied the section you mentioned below, in case anyone else would be interested in reading it (its not that long).

    Councilwoman Horvath, I appreciate your knowledge on the subject, your vast experience and your diligence in making sure closed sessions are justifiable. Since this is a learning experience for me, would I be correct in saying Exemption (e) prevents the discussion of HYPE outside a closed session of the council?. Thanks for all you do.

    15.268 Closed sessions; permissible purposes.
    Sec. 8. A public body may meet in a closed session only for the following purposes:

    (a) To consider the dismissal, suspension, or disciplining of, or to hear complaints or charges brought against, or to consider a periodic personnel evaluation of, a public officer, employee, staff member, or
    individual agent, if the named person requests a closed hearing. A person requesting a closed hearing may rescind the request at any time, in which case the matter at issue shall be considered after the rescission only in open sessions.

    (b) To consider the dismissal, suspension, or disciplining of a student if the public body is part of the school district, intermediate school district, or institution of higher education that the student is attending, and
    if the student or the student’s parent or guardian requests a closed hearing.

    (c) For strategy and negotiation sessions connected with the negotiation of a collective bargaining agreement if either negotiating party requests a closed hearing.

    (d) To consider the purchase or lease of real property up to the time an option to purchase or lease that real property is obtained.

    (e) To consult with its attorney regarding trial or settlement strategy in connection with specific pending litigation, but only if an open meeting would have a detrimental financial effect on the litigating or settlement
    position of the public body.

    (f) To review and consider the contents of an application for employment or appointment to a public office if the candidate requests that the application remain confidential. However, except as otherwise provided in
    this subdivision, all interviews by a public body for employment or appointment to a public office shall be held in an open meeting pursuant to this act. This subdivision does not apply to a public office described in
    subdivision (j).

    (g) Partisan caucuses of members of the state legislature.

    (h) To consider material exempt from discussion or disclosure by state or federal statute.

    (i) For a compliance conference conducted by the department of commerce under section 16231 of the public health code, Act No. 368 of the Public Acts of 1978, being section 333.16231 of the Michigan
    Compiled Laws, before a complaint is issued (j) In the process of searching for and selecting a president of an institution of higher education established under section 4, 5, or 6 of article VIII of the state constitution of 1963, to review the specific contents of an application, to conduct an interview with a candidate, or to discuss the specific qualifications of a candidate if the particular process of searching for and selecting a president of an institution of higher education meets all
    of the following requirements:

    (i) The search committee in the process, appointed by the governing board, consists of at least 1 student of the institution, 1 faculty member of the institution, 1 administrator of the institution, 1 alumnus of the
    institution, and 1 representative of the general public. The search committee also may include 1 or more members of the governing board of the institution, but the number shall not constitute a quorum of the
    governing board. However, the search committee shall not be constituted in such a way that any 1 of the groups described in this subparagraph constitutes a majority of the search committee.(ii) After the search committee recommends the 5 final candidates, the governing board does not take a vote on a final selection for the president until at least 30 days after the 5 final candidates have been publicly identified by the search committee.
    (iii) The deliberations and vote of the governing board of the institution on selecting the president take place in an open session of the governing board.

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  13. Well first of all you can’t briefly read the act. You have to read the whole thing. Section 15.268 CLOSED SESSIONS; permissible purposes.
    Sec. 8. a public body may meet in a closed session only for the following purposes: (a) to consider the dismissal, suspension or disciplining of, or to hear complaints or charges brought against etc, etc, etc. (b) regards school closed sessions (c) For strategy and negotiation of a collective bargaing agreement
    (d) To consider the purchase or lease of real property up to the time an option to purchase or lease that real prperty may be obtained. (e) To consult with its attorney regarding trial or settlement strategy in connection with specific pending litigation but only if an open meeting would have a detrimental financial effect on the litigating or settlement position of the public body. There are a few more but if you have the act you can read the whole section. For you information I have attended many classes on parlimentary procedure and believe me if I think we are going into closed session and it does not meet one of the criteria of the act I object.

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  14. Councilwoman Horvath, I have briefly looked over The Open Meetings, Act, Public Act No. 267 of 1976. Quoted from the official website: http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/Publications/OpenMtgsFreedom.pdf.

    It states:

    Dear Citizen,
    The ideal of a democratic government is too often thwarted by bureaucratic secrecy and unresponsive officials. Citizens frequently find it difficult to discover what decisions are being made and what facts lie behind those decisions.

    The Open Meetings Act, Public Act No. 267 of 1976, protects your right to know what’s going on in government by opening to full public view the processes by which elected and nonelected officials make decisions on your behalf.This guide to the Freedom of Information Act and the Open Meetings Act is designed to make it easier for citizens to keep track of what their government is doing.

    In addition, The Michigan Freedom of Information Act, Public Act No. 442 of 1976, establishes procedures to ensure every citizen’s right of access to government documents. The Act establishes the right to inspect and receive copies of records of state and local government bodies.

    Would you please point me to the specific section that is reference to what you have said on this subject. Thank You.

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  15. I understand that is the law and I see all of you on the council following that law. When is the Mayor going to follow it? He sure didn’t have a problem breaking it when it was to his advantage to do so.

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  16. When we are in litgation with anyone for any reason the subject can not be discussed in public weather they are citizens of our city or not. Closed sessions consist of discussions on personell matters, land aquisitions, law suites and litigation. That is the law. You can check this information in the Open Meetings Act.

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  17. Grandma

    I changed AACAP to AAPAC hope you don’t mind but it’s (Arab American Political Action Committee.)
    I can only hope that members of AAPAC will come to a council meeting and ask those questions. In the meantime all of us as residents of
    Dearborn Heights should understand very well that the Mayor did not have the authority to say those things to AAPAC or anyone else as evident at the July 23, 2013 council meetings. If the statements made at AAPAC had truth behind them the Mayor would have had no trouble answering the question. The fact of the matter is this not the Mayor nor the Council have the authority to make an organization tax exempt. That’s the way I understand it there’s paper work and a criteria that any organization must meet in-order to obtain that status. That’s what the Tax Tribunal will decide in January not the Mayor sitting with a group of people that he’s trying to get that groups endorsement.

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  18. Thank you Marge for responding but you were not the one I spoke to. Now I am more confused than ever as to who or what to believe.

    Whenever anything is a smidgeon controversial “it can’t be discussed” while the video tape is running and is always either “talk to me after the meeting” or “we will meet later”. So who gets caught in the middle but the concerned citizen. It is no wonder there is so little citizen participation when you are treated like a mushroom (kept in the dark and fed a lot of BS) by our city officials. Our city officials like to use the excuse of confidentiality or its an active litigious matter as a cover for plain old secrecy.

    We are the ones paying the bill yet we don’t know a thing. Confidentiality should only be used when the good name of a person might suffer.

    I would like to propose that in future meetings if the subject matter doesn’t involve someone personally; the cameras are turned off. The people in attendance must show ID that they are indeed citizens of Dearborn Heights (anyone not a citizen is asked to leave the room)and then the topic is discussed. I know these meetings are open to the public; however, those citizens that take the time out to attend the meetings should be kept informed as to what is going on. If our city is involved with something like HYPE we as citizens have the right to know what is going on and not a lot of regurgitated bull spit.

    Seeing that the consensus is that the mayor used the term “property tax” at the AAPAC meeting, I feel that all the members (the more the witnesses the better as you will each be given three minutes) of the AAPAC should attend a council meeting when it is video recorded. They all need to ask the mayor what his basis was for telling the AAPAC that HYPE was not going to have to pay property taxes..

    AAPAC, since this statement was said at your meeting: the ball is in your court to get to the bottom of this or are you just going to blindly support the mayor for re-election without getting to the truth?.

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  19. I don’t know who told you it was about personal property tax. That is not a true statement. That is all I can say on the subject.

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  20. Dear Ms. Farrens, I know the councilperson that told me the HYPE situation was about personal property tax and not property tax sometimes reads this blog. I hope they will respond to this. I was told this personally; it was not a “he said, she said” type of thing. If they do not, I will ask the council at one of their videotaped meetings to please clarify.

    Dear Anonymous, HYPE is an asset to this city and surrounding communities. It helps children by providing them a structured place to study, learn and exercise. There are informational programs for the community and for a small fee it offers gym membership for exercise and workouts. Instead of paying taxes, some of our tax revenue should be given to HYPE.

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  21. This is what the Mayor told the AAPAC endorsement committee when he met with them. When asked at the council meeting all that was said is it’s in litigation and there’s a tax tribunal set for January of 2014. The only one saying they will not be paying taxes is the Mayor from everything said at the last council meeting there’s been no agreement/settlement on anything. It’s the Mayor being the Mayor and doing what he always does mislead a nice way of putting it. Nothing fraudulent about it if they meet the guide lines for it there are many organizations in the city that are tax exempt.

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  22. PLEASE EXPLAIN, AGAIN, WHY: HYPE wouldn’t be paying property taxes starting in 2014.
    THAT SEEMS CROOKED AND/OR FRAUDULENT.

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  23. Dear Grandma Suzanne,
    Your comment does not make sense to me. According to the Arab American Newspaper, HYPE received it’s first property tax bill while still under construction. Personal property tax is not levied on an organzation until it’s furnished and inventory is taken. Who is your Council source? Are they willing to comment to all of us?

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  24. The issue regarding HYPE isn’t on “property tax” (the tax you pay on the land and building itself) but rather on “personal property tax” which is an additional tax a business or organization pays on the stuff inside the building like furniture, computers, etc. I was made aware of this by a council member.

    HYPE doesn’t have to pay property tax, but the city is trying to go after them for personal property tax. HYPE is a good organization but that doesn’t matter to the city administration if there is a way of squeezing money from something; just like with the Zoo and DIA millage.

    The mayor knew the problem was with the personal property tax and not property tax so that is why he made the statement he did..

    However, if he did indeed say “personal property tax” at this meeting he was out of line. The mayor says a lot of things. If his doing was equal to his saying, this city would be in great shape. However, words without action mean absolutely nothing. Sorry to hear the AAPAC agreed to endorse him.

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