Timeline of John Hoff Oklahoma Law License Application and Results

Saturday, September 20, 2008

North Minneapolis Officials, Inspectors, Hawthorne Housing Director & Johnny Northside: Do a Questionable Deal

Johnny Northside is apparently not about to disclose the amount the City of Minneapolis paid for his house, 3016 6th Street North.
This is public information but, both the County and City websites state "No Sale Information On File For This Property."
Johnny confirmed on his blog that, it was NOT an investment property. He had plans to fix it up and LIVE IN IT. But, he owned the house for only four months.

Johnny Northside went on to describe the current condition of the house in the same post. Here is what he had to say about it:
"The house has a deck in the back. The carpet on the floors needs a good cleaning, but it's not nasty. Somebody started rehabbing and quit in mid-job, but managed to move the project along quite a bit."
That hardly sounds like a house that has been boarded up and declared "hazardous" by city inspectors and needing to be bulldozed.

Last month I posted about the same house and directed questions toward John Hoff AKA Johnny Northside. .
Some of the questions were:
How does one go about selling to the City?
What are the requirements?
Who decides which houses will be bought?
Who determines the values?
Did the city approach Johnny?
Did Johnny approach the City?
None of these questions have been answered. Apparently, there is one man who plays a vital role in determining which houses should be bought by the city to be torn down. I think he should be able to answer the above questions.

In an article posted by Minnesota Public Radio on September 11, 2008, titled: "Minneapolis clears vacant, dilapidated homes to curb dangers"
MPR talked with Jeff Skrenes, who is Housing Director with the Hawthorne Neighborhood Council. It was reported that Jeff has "helped the city identify properties for demolition."
NOW it makes more sense. Allow me to summarize the situation and I will close by directing a few questions to Jeff Skrenes.

- The city of Minneapolis wants to buy and demolish 100 homes by years end.
- The new owner of 3016 6th Street North claimed in writing that the house
had recent rehab work done and the carpet didn't even need to be replaced.
- The owner said it was not an investment property and he planned to fix it up
and "live in it!" It was purchased for $8,500.
- After he bought the house and posted the details, Jeff Skrenes posted the
following comment on Johns blog:
"My name is Jeff Skrenes and I am the housing director at Hawthorne Neighborhood Council (formerly HACC). Your blog has me extraordinarily excited - you're doing a lot of the things I'm doing as well in reporting problem properties. Let's meet up sometime and talk about ways we can work together. I look forward to having you in our neighborhood."

- The following quote concerning the rehab needed at 3016 6th St. N, came
from an email written in March 2008 by John Hoff. It was sent to Jim
Watkins. Hoff said,
"I don't have the funds to pay for it, but I was going to apply for grants and also have friends stay there who have fix-up skills but need a place to stay. The city wants fixes, and the city might be willing to bend a lot of rules as long as actual progress is being made. I've heard things."
- In June of 2008, John sent another email to Jim to explain why he had
decided to not post his questions on his blog that Jim submitted about his
house and why Johnny never talked about repairs his house needed.

"I have many friends, including a bunch of new ones in the Hawthorne neighborhood, who are very fond of me. I don't make a habit of not publishing comments but you managed to fall into that special exception. As for my flipping, my land baron deals, my wheeling and dealing, "my house is being sold as part of positive development on the block. When I can discuss all the details, I will, and openly on the blog. Until then, the city is keenly aware of my doings and dealings. I'm on a first name basis with the inspectors. I have no worries and I don't expect to be in prison at any time in the future. Furthermore, when all the details can be revealed...it will be clear"
- To date, no details have been disclosed on Johnnys blog.
- Johnny sold the house in July to the city after reportedly not making any
repairs to the house. John did not live in the house at all.
- Sale price has not been disclosed by the seller, the city or the County Tax
office. Current tax records shows the property value to be $128,000.

I understand that politicians have been known to engage in shady side deals and questionable situations in the past. Members of the Minneapolis City Council have been on a rampage the past two years while pointing dirty fingers at several people, claiming they have committed fraud and that is the reason North Minneapolis is in such bad shape.
This post has detailed how "do-gooder" Johnny Northside got in with the top brass and has done a deal with the city.
Those involved and "in the know" are Johnny, Hawthorn Community Housing Director Jeff Skrenes, city inspectors (according to Johnny) and city officials.

This whole thing just stinks. If dirty fingers are going to be pointed at people, the ones doing the pointing should be prepared and willing to address the public when one of their deals is called into question.

To Mr. Skrenes...
I direct the following questions to you, sir:

Did you play a role in the sale of 3016 6th St. N to the city?

If yes, What was your involvement?

Johnny claimed his house was not that bad, did you feel the house needed to be demolished? Why?

Why is the sale information being withheld?

How is a purchase price determined? What criteria is used?

Did you approach Johnny about selling his house to the city?

Do you have any influence with the inspectors?

Thank you.


Anonymous said...

Do you ever pose any of these questions to people directly, or do you just post them on your Web site?

Are you involved in the Hawthorne Community Council?

Anti-Johnny (Given by Johnny himself) said...

I have asked Johnny Northside many questions on his blog but, he has rejected them rather than post them.
I have asked John Hoff questions in personal emails that he has not answered and I have asked him questions on open forum message boards. When John does not want something to be known, he will not answer. However, I will send this link directly to Jeff Skrenes.

Am I involved in the Hawthorne Community Council? No.
I don't live in Hawthorne. But neither does Johnny Northside so, maybe I will pursue that.