Looking at check from Lakeshore Engineering Services to Maestro Associates for $2500 on February 18th 2003. Memo line reads consulting fee. Maestro was run by Bernard Kilpatrick.
At some point, witness talked to Bernard about status of the 2 contracts. After going through various levels to find out why the $5 million and $10 million contracts were moving. Rachmale and witness met with Bernard to find out what was going on. Bernard said he would look into it. He would always call witness back but didn't tell him about status of contracts.
Looking at DWSD Board of Water Commissioners agenda for meeting on April 23rd 2003. Meeting #4. Reads that per recommendation of Awni Qaqish that contract 1387 should go to Lakeshore engineering. Across the top of that paragraph it reads "PULLED". Witness went to the meeting and saw it read "PULLED" across it. took it to mean that it would not be addressed at meeting. This agenda occurred after meeting with Bobby Ferguson where he asked for a cut.
Looking at another document from Victor Mercado to Avinash Rachmale. May 16th 2003. Proposal on CS 1387- 3 weeks after agenda at Water Commissioners Board. First line, DWSD regrets to inform that the project is cancelled. Signed by Victor Mercado. witness says he was shocked and angry because these were significant projects. "No logical reason for it to happen."
Spoke to a Mr. Mehta who had been with Lakeshore, an ex-partner. Mehta recommended that he should go to Bobby Ferguson. "All other avenues had failed so I had nothing to lose by going to Bobby."
Met Ferguson twice on issue- once at Courtyard by Marriott and the other time Southern Fires restaurants. First meeting was with Rachmale, the other witness went alone.
Rachmale and witness wanted to find out why they lost contracts. Bobby said "I don't know why I'm here." Bobby did not suggest what they should do or express concern at their situation. Witness met with Bobby at a second meeting, again same thing, and no answer from Ferguson.
After those 2 meetings with Ferguson, witness met with Derrick Miller, former Kilpatrick aide. Witness's intent was to meet with the former mayor. Hardiman explained his circumstances to miller who said it was Victor Mercado's decision.
Letter from Victor Mercado to Avisnash Rachmale at Lakeshore Engineering on July 28th 2003. Regarding cancellation of contract 1361- the $10 million contract.
"The Detroit Water and Sewerage regrets to announce that contract 1361. The contract task will be performed by existing contract." Signed by Mercado. Contract went to competitor Inland Waters. Witness says he was stunned, disappointed, angry and concerned. "$10 million contract was going to become someone else's."
Later on, witness found out that Ferguson was on Inland Waters team on this contract.
Chutkow asks why are you angry. Witness simply says "$10 million. $5 million."
10:29AM Partner Rachmale was devastated. Asked witness what did they do wrong.
Witness believes at some point that he may have met with the mayor. If he did meet with mayor, most he would have gotten from conversation was "I'm sorry."
Lakeshore began to look at projects on federal end and other city projects.
In 2004, outfalls contracts. Looking at a photograph of outfalls that lead into the Detroit River. The outfalls are connected to the drainage system which is operated by DWSD. This condition was supposed to be fixed by WS 849. Witness on the business development side of the company.
Sounds like Avinash Rachmale is the next witness due to testify.
Teamed with Lanzo Lining, Ferguson Enterprises to submit bid for 849. Team leader on proposal was Lakeshore Engineering which would versee contractors doing work. Lanzo would put lining to cover holes. Ferguson would be assisting on the construction side which he specialized in: excavation, repair.
Hardiman met with Ferguson and Lanzo Lining, Angelo D'Alessandro of LL. Initially, witness had talked to Ferguson who was doing a lot of work in Detroit and he seemed to have a clear understanding of how to get things done. Ferguson seemed to be one of individuals he needed to talk to.
Witness says that after losing $5 million and $10 million contracts and noticing that Bobby didn't lose contracts, Hardiman figured Ferguson was good to have on the team.
Chutkow asks about D'Alessandro's reaction to Ferguson. Defense objects and judge sustains.
Ferguson was on a lot of teams at that point. Hardiman says they got points for Ferguson being a Detroit-based business. Had several meetings with Ferguson and D'Alessandro.
Looking at text message from Hardiman or Ferguson. January 26th 2004
Text reads: "Bobby don't forget to call Victor Mercado."
Witness says he wrote that because Ferguson had a relationship with mayor, Victor, Derrick Miller and Hardiman wanted everyone that Ferguson was on his team. Ferguson had strong relationships that Hardiman didn't have so he thought it would help.