Daily Archives: July 1, 2012

A cautionary note for buyers in unfinished condominium projects

Photo selected by Greenwich Association of Realtors

While the Havemeyer Lane development has recovered from its original sponsor’s failure and now seems to be prospering, other projects around town seem still to be vulnerable, including that one on Sound View Drive. Here’s what happened to some Pennsylvania unit owners when their developer went bust.

Teresa Fusco thought she had done everything that she needed to do to sail comfortably into her golden years. She owned a condominium unit in Reading, Pa., with an appraised valued of $101,000, and she had a rainy-day fund in case her health failed.

So she was shocked when earlier this year she suddenly found herself with no home and a wrecked credit score after a company that bought most of the condo complex sold her unit for less than half of what she thought it was worth. To make matters worse, Fusco (pictured left) is still on the hook for the $71,000 mortgage on the property that she no longer owns
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Saving their little yellow brothers from evil

Where’s Waldo in Chinatown? or “Spot the Chink!”

“Thousands” gather in San Francisco’s Los Angeles’ Chinatown to protest opening of a Wal-Mart grocery store.

While some might think that local residents were capable of deciding for themselves whether they wanted cheap food, the usual cast of activists knows better.

Many said they were there to protest construction of Wal-Mart’s 33,000-square-foot store in an existing apartment building at Cesar Chavez and Grand avenues, while others came to decry what they said were Wal-Mart’s low wages and union-busting attempts.

“I’m especially concerned about Chinatown because it’s a historical-cultural center,” said Matt Southgate, 40, who drove up from Santa Ana to join the rally. “I’m concerned about all unique communities being homogenized,” he said.

For John Wong, a professor at East Los Angeles College, the thought of a Wal-Mart in Chinatown was disturbing.

[As a token Chinaman recruited from outside the community and a noted community college instructor] “To have corporate food come in to Chinatown, it’s just kind of gross,” Wong said. He also decried the “conditions of the workers, the corporate food, and the whole impact Wal-Mart will have on the surrounding community.”

“We hope to send a message that they can’t come in here without consideration of the local people,” Wong said. “Hopefully this demonstration and others will stop them.”A march and rally were scheduled to start at Los Angeles State Park at 11 a.m. and conclude with speeches against the retail giant under the dragon gates on Broadway at Cesar Chavez. Singer-songwriter Ben Harper, “Rage Against the Machine” guitarist Tom Morello, civil rights activist Dolores Huerta and U.S. Rep. Judy Chu (D-El Monte) were among those expected to take part.

“This would just ruin my children’s lives”, fretted Marin County activist Theresa Loveless who had paused in her shopping to observe the demonstration. “We bring them down on Saturdays so they can see learn of this city’s cultural heritage. To see those tiny old men in pigtails selling snow peas and tofu, well that’s just priceless. Take them away and you’re depriving my children of their opportunity to experience multi-culturalism!”

Asked if the Mexican woman ushering Ms. Lawless’s children into the family’s Pinzgauer behind her belonged to a union, Lawless looked startled: “Maria? Why would she need a union? Why, she’s practically family!”

And she drove away.

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Australian pol shows Obama how it’s done

Selling access, one contributor at a time

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