4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

How Darbeau's hide was nailed

Ex-U-T reporter and Faulconer aide got big bucks from Port District

Tony Manolatos and Wayne Darbeau
Tony Manolatos and Wayne Darbeau

The story broke May 19 on U-T San Diego’s website: "Port CEO seeks tenant work for son," read the headline. "Darbeau asks for help from those he holds sway over."

On its face, the paper — owned by GOP real estate magnate and bayside hotel developer Douglas Manchester, who is fighting a legal war against the California Coastal Commission to build a massive commercial development on the old Navy Broadway office complex — had nailed a sizable bureaucratic hide to the wall.

"CEO Wayne Darbeau, 61, asked Sharon Bernie-Cloward, president of the San Diego Port Tenants Association, for help contacting port tenants about the job, according to emails obtained by U-T Watchdog," said the account.

Three days later, on May 22, the U-T ran a follow-up, reporting that "Pasha Automotive Services — one of the port’s largest tenants — was asked by Port CEO Wayne Darbeau to employ his son in 2012, and the company did so, letting him work as a warehouse inventory clerk from June to August, according to Darbeau and his son’s resume."

Though Darbeau denied he had extended favors to Pasha and withdrew his request for a summer job for his son, the paper was not yet done.

Enter Tony Manolatos, former U-T reporter, one-time city-council staffer and mayoral campaign aide to Kevin Faulconer, GOP Lincoln Club spokesman, and campaign consultant.

On June 10, Manolatos and Port District attorney Thomas Russell quietly signed a contract for Manolatos "to provide strategic communications services to [Russell] and the Board of Port Commissioners."

The document, released by the port after a request under the California public records act, set the consultant's hourly fee at $175, plus expenses, including "wire service fees, large-volume (more than 25 at a time) photocopying, clipping service, travel outside San Diego County, parking, overnight mail delivery and courier services, which shall be billed at actual cost….

"The maximum payable to consultant under this agreement shall be $20,000 unless amended to increase this amount," the contract says. "This agreement shall be effective as of June 10, 2014 and shall terminate on December 31, 2014 unless extended by amendment."

Though the document itself offers no specifics regarding the consultant's duties, Manolatos confirmed in a telephone interview that he had been retained to assist with media requests regarding port records and information on Darbeau.

His services were required, he said, because the port's public relations and clerical staff reported to Darbeau, creating a purported conflict of interest.

According to a July 1 invoice, Manolatos logged 36.5 hours during June, billing the port $6387. The port redacted descriptions of his activities before it released the document.

Ashly McGlone

However, an August 1 unredacted Manolatos invoice that the port subsequently said had been mistakenly divulged shows that the consultant had repeated contact with U-T reporter Ashly McGlone and also communicated with U-T editorial writers.

"June 10, 1 hour, Emails, calls with Ashly, [and] Bob [Nelson]," says one entry. "July 11, 3.5 hours, Review documents, Emails with Port Staff, finalize replies for Ashly, send replies," says another.

On July 14, Manolatos spent two hours, on "Emails, phone calls with Ashly, Port Clerk, port staff and Bob," according to the invoice.

Two days later, on July 16, an hour was billed to "Monitor and review news coverage. Talk to Bob, U-T editorial department, Ashly."

Manolatos spent a total of 13.5 hours on "document review" through the middle of July, according to the August invoice. The consultant billed the port for 40.5 hours, valued at $7087.50.

Meanwhile, the U-T had sharpened its focus, including a June 20 piece reporting that, based on "a new letter obtained by the U-T," Darbeau "eased contract requirements for waterfront tenant Pasha Automotive after the company employed Darbeau’s son for a summer job."

Darbeau was fired by the port commission on July 25. Manolatos spent an additional 13.5 hours prepping for a “News Conference and Special Board Meeting” for that event, the invoice says.

"At the end of the paid leave, Darbeau — whose annual base salary is $267,800 — will receive an additional six months of severance pay," the U-T reported, not noting the Manolatos fees. “The port will also cover $10,000 of his legal fees from an internal review of his conduct."

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Urban adventuring in Oakland

There's always something new to explore in SF's vibrant sister city.
Next Article

Urban adventuring in Oakland

There's always something new to explore in SF's vibrant sister city.
Tony Manolatos and Wayne Darbeau
Tony Manolatos and Wayne Darbeau

The story broke May 19 on U-T San Diego’s website: "Port CEO seeks tenant work for son," read the headline. "Darbeau asks for help from those he holds sway over."

On its face, the paper — owned by GOP real estate magnate and bayside hotel developer Douglas Manchester, who is fighting a legal war against the California Coastal Commission to build a massive commercial development on the old Navy Broadway office complex — had nailed a sizable bureaucratic hide to the wall.

"CEO Wayne Darbeau, 61, asked Sharon Bernie-Cloward, president of the San Diego Port Tenants Association, for help contacting port tenants about the job, according to emails obtained by U-T Watchdog," said the account.

Three days later, on May 22, the U-T ran a follow-up, reporting that "Pasha Automotive Services — one of the port’s largest tenants — was asked by Port CEO Wayne Darbeau to employ his son in 2012, and the company did so, letting him work as a warehouse inventory clerk from June to August, according to Darbeau and his son’s resume."

Though Darbeau denied he had extended favors to Pasha and withdrew his request for a summer job for his son, the paper was not yet done.

Enter Tony Manolatos, former U-T reporter, one-time city-council staffer and mayoral campaign aide to Kevin Faulconer, GOP Lincoln Club spokesman, and campaign consultant.

On June 10, Manolatos and Port District attorney Thomas Russell quietly signed a contract for Manolatos "to provide strategic communications services to [Russell] and the Board of Port Commissioners."

The document, released by the port after a request under the California public records act, set the consultant's hourly fee at $175, plus expenses, including "wire service fees, large-volume (more than 25 at a time) photocopying, clipping service, travel outside San Diego County, parking, overnight mail delivery and courier services, which shall be billed at actual cost….

"The maximum payable to consultant under this agreement shall be $20,000 unless amended to increase this amount," the contract says. "This agreement shall be effective as of June 10, 2014 and shall terminate on December 31, 2014 unless extended by amendment."

Though the document itself offers no specifics regarding the consultant's duties, Manolatos confirmed in a telephone interview that he had been retained to assist with media requests regarding port records and information on Darbeau.

His services were required, he said, because the port's public relations and clerical staff reported to Darbeau, creating a purported conflict of interest.

According to a July 1 invoice, Manolatos logged 36.5 hours during June, billing the port $6387. The port redacted descriptions of his activities before it released the document.

Ashly McGlone

However, an August 1 unredacted Manolatos invoice that the port subsequently said had been mistakenly divulged shows that the consultant had repeated contact with U-T reporter Ashly McGlone and also communicated with U-T editorial writers.

"June 10, 1 hour, Emails, calls with Ashly, [and] Bob [Nelson]," says one entry. "July 11, 3.5 hours, Review documents, Emails with Port Staff, finalize replies for Ashly, send replies," says another.

On July 14, Manolatos spent two hours, on "Emails, phone calls with Ashly, Port Clerk, port staff and Bob," according to the invoice.

Two days later, on July 16, an hour was billed to "Monitor and review news coverage. Talk to Bob, U-T editorial department, Ashly."

Manolatos spent a total of 13.5 hours on "document review" through the middle of July, according to the August invoice. The consultant billed the port for 40.5 hours, valued at $7087.50.

Meanwhile, the U-T had sharpened its focus, including a June 20 piece reporting that, based on "a new letter obtained by the U-T," Darbeau "eased contract requirements for waterfront tenant Pasha Automotive after the company employed Darbeau’s son for a summer job."

Darbeau was fired by the port commission on July 25. Manolatos spent an additional 13.5 hours prepping for a “News Conference and Special Board Meeting” for that event, the invoice says.

"At the end of the paid leave, Darbeau — whose annual base salary is $267,800 — will receive an additional six months of severance pay," the U-T reported, not noting the Manolatos fees. “The port will also cover $10,000 of his legal fees from an internal review of his conduct."

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

In the thick of it with Edward Elgar

Mainly Mozart grants a musical wish
Next Article

Urban adventuring in Oakland

There's always something new to explore in SF's vibrant sister city.
Comments
7

Seems to this outside observer that no "implying" is necessary: someone had to be the go-between, so why not former U-T staffer and hustler Tony Manolatos who certainly is sitting in the catbird seat, contacts-wise. As for his price, maybe he will raise his fee -- or maybe he is working at discounted "family" rates.

Sept. 5, 2014

Why did someone need to be the go-between, exactly?

Sept. 5, 2014

Six months of severance pay for Darbeau? $133,900? How can that possibly be justified? Why did the Port Board approve that? Are they still paying for his health insurance?

Sept. 5, 2014

Because we don't get to vote on fat cat salaries but the well-to-do want us to vote on a low wage no/low benefit workers wages.

Sept. 6, 2014

"Greed is good." --Gordon Gekko

Sept. 6, 2014

Friday morning 8 am, September 24, 2010 we had a meeting at Port of San Diego with then-Port CEO Charles Wurster and Vice President of Administration Wayne Darbeau. We verbally agreed to a course of action for solutions to our outstanding 2006 Seismic concerns. Both Port Executives agreed to ask our State Geologist John Parrish for help and assistance in adherence to the State Seismic Hazard Mapping Act as it relates to active faulting on public Port Tidelands subject to liquefaction. And recommendations for public utilities prone to soil deformation. Later that afternoon then-Port CEO Wurster resigned.

http://www.portofsandiego.org/about-us/general-press-releases/2262-charles-d-wurster-announces-resignation-as-presidentceo-of-the-board-of-port-commissioners.html

On October 5, 2010, 11 days after the abrupt resignation after our verbal agreement, Wayne Darbeau became the interim, then final President/CEO of the Port agency. He did all he could to hide evidence of active faulting on Port tidelands from the State Geologist, Port Commissioners, Public, etc. The Port is still in collusion with the City, CCDC, Airport Authority, and local judges.

http://www.portofsandiego.org/about-us/general-press-releases/2271-senior-executive-named-interim-presidentceo-of-port-of-san-diego.html

Good riddance. Hopefully someone with ethics or a clue at the Port will asked the State Geologist to step in and give the San Diego region, including Coastal Commission staff, guidance on the ignored standard of care. All government agencies ignore their responsibility to confirm or deny active faulting under liquefiable soils on public State Lands. Including the Airport, North Embarcadero Visionary Plan (NEVP), Navy Broadway Complex (NBC), Old Police Headquarters, original Convention Center basement that leaks, Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal (TAMT), and the Point Loma Fault near Nimitz.

http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-hollywood-20140822-story.html

Sept. 6, 2014

We can only marvel that the Mill, aka UTSan Diego, chose to out this scandal. Actually it wasn't all that big a scandal, as they go here and in most big cities. His indiscretion was very small town in nature. So, why the expose?

The usual apologists will say it was racism, pure and simple. I'm not among them, but the involvement of the Mill is, shall we say, unusual.

Sept. 8, 2014

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close