Official ethics forms show Hallandale Beach Mayor Keith London received income from the same construction company involved in the ethical misconduct investigation of former Commissioner Anthony Sanders. On August 9, 2017, the Broward County Office Of The Inspector General (OIG) released its findings of its investigation into “allegations that Hallandale Beach City Commissioner and Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) Director Anthony Sanders failed to disclose payments, that Palms Community Action Coalition, Inc. (PCAC) an organization which he voted to receive thousands of dollars in City and developer funding, made to him and his his son.” The Broward OIG had been investigating improper payments from the Hallandale Beach CRA since at least 2013.
In its final report, the OIG found, “Commissioner Sanders engaged in a pattern of misconduct that violated Florida ethics law, the Hallandale Beach City Charter, and the Broward Code of Ethics For Elected Officials.” The Broward OIG gave a list of projects Sanders voted on which benefitted PCAC. One company was Lanzo Construction of Deerfield Beach.
According to the report, Sanders approved a $768,515 payment to Lanzo Construction for a drainage project on November 18, 2013. Lanzo partnered with Calvin Girodano on this project.
A Calvin Giordano senior Vice President told the OIG that, “Lanzo arranged for PCAC to be the ‘community benefit plan’ partner.” The OIG report shows on May 1, 2013 , Lanzo Construction paid $25,000 to PCAC.
Two days after the Broward OIG report was released, Commissioner Anthony Sanders resigned.
MAYOR LONDON RECEIVED INCOME FROM LANZO CONSTRUCTION
An August 2, 2017 letter from then- Commissioner Keith London was included in the OIG report. Referring to items approved by Sanders, London wrote, “You will see my voting record and I felt this was important to include because the vast majority of time, my vote was no.” He continued, “I would appreciate if you include this information as part of your report moving forward. I request you note within the report that not all members of the City Commission\CRA Board Of Directors voted for the mentioned projects.”
London was not mentioned elsewhere in the OIG report. So why did he feel the need to write the letter?
Was it because of the September 2010 post on his website, KeithLondon.com, touting his approval of a $925,000 payment to Lanzo Construction for emergency repair and rehabilitation of sewers?
Not mentioned in his letter to the OIG, was London’s income derived from Lanzo Construction.
Under secondary sources of income on his 2015 Ethics Disclosure Form 1, Keith London listed Lanzo Construction. The form was signed and submitted by London in August 2016.
No further information regarding the type of work or payment was listed.
On May 6, 2015 Keith London voted to approve an $800,000 payment to Lanzo Construction for additional work done on the N.E. 14th Avenue drainage project. According to staff documents, Lanzo initially requested a $1,867.466 payment but staff negotiated it down to the $800,000 payment.
According to the meeting minutes, London never mentioned any business ties to Lanzo Construction.
LANZO HISTORY OF HIRING ELECTED OFFICIALS
Lanzo Construction has no problem hiring Broward elected officials.
In June 2006, Bob Norman uncovered Lanzo Construction paid an engineering firm owned by Deerfield Beach Mayor Al Capellini. Lanzo Construction had been accused of illegally dumping materials in a Deerfield Beach lake.
Norman exposed a complex tale showing how Capellini wielded influence to push through a Lanzo project along the lake:
At the workshop, Capellini explained the Lanzo project to his fellow commissioners — who, along with the rest of Deerfield, still didn’t know he was employed by the developer. The mayor mentioned that Lanzo had obtained all the required permits, including the one from the county that he’d apparently helped the company obtain. He touted the project, saying Lanzo had a right to fill the lake.
And he did it all in his role as mayor, not as a Lanzo engineer.
Capellini would be charged by the Broward State Attorney for misconduct involving another matter. He was removed from office, but Broward Judge dismissed the charges before a jury got the case.
Why did Lanzo Construction get into business with Keith London? He is not an engineer. Does London have experience in the sewer repair industry?
As REDBROWARD reported two weeks ago, Mayor Keith London has no problem working for developers. Campaign records show Keith London, Inc., a company owned by Keith London, received thousands of dollars in consulting fees from political action committees funded by Miami-Dade “mega developers.”
In 2015, developer Sandor Sher spent $70 million buying a large parcel of land in North Miami Beach. Laws in Miami Beach stated voters needed to approve Sher’s massive project. The Miami Herald reported that Sher created the “A Better North Beach” political committee to push his massive development project.
In October 2015, campaign records show A Better North Beach paid Keith London, Inc. $10,000 for consulting services.
Two years later, another political committee pushing development in Miami-Dade hired Keith London, Inc.
Campaign records show the “Building A Stronger Beach” committee paid Keith London, Inc twice in November 2017.
On November 3, 2017, Keith London, Inc. received a $456 payment for “parking, supplies and shipping.” One the same date, Keith London, Inc. received a $7,500 payment for “campaign consulting.”
According to April 2016 campaign treasurer reports, Vice Mayor Michele Lazarow, a staunch ally of London, received $3,000 from the Village At Gulfstream Park, Gulfstream Park and Orchid Concessions. In October 2016 , Michele Lazarow recorded large contributions from out of state gaming interests such as Xpress Bet, Oregon Racing, Amtote of Maryland, and Monarch Content Management.
Just days before the November election, Michele Lazarow received maximum contributions of $1,000 from political committees created by lobbyist Evan Ross, another staunch supporter of Keith London.
On October 31, Lazarow received a $1,000 contribution from each of the following committees: Good Government, Public Service, and Progressive Principles.
Lazarow also received $1,000 each from the Ethics Matter political committee. This committee was funded by gambling interests.
In a telephone interview with REDBROWARD, Claudia Penas of CBV LLC said her company gave $5,000 to the “Good Government” Committee to help London.
When asked why they gave to Good Government, Penas said, “For Keith London’s campaign.” Penas became apprehensive when asked who requested the contribution. REDBROWARD asked if Keith London made the request.
“My attorney told us to make the contribution,” Penas said.
When asked for the name of her attorney, Penas said she did not feel comfortable discussing on the phone. She requested REDBROWARD come to her office before hanging up the phone.
Keith London wants Hallandale Beach voters to elect him mayor later this year. Don’t voters deserve to know about his work for engineering firms and developers?
REDBROWARD asked Mayor Keith London for comment. He has not responded.