Occam’s Razor

August 27, 2019 · 0 comments

So who is  William of Occam? Actually Occam (or Ockham) is a town in England where William of Occam was born. William lived from about 1285 to 1349, a philosopher and a Franciscan monk. In the 800-plus years since Friar William laid down his maxim, logicians have turned it into a rule: Occam’s razor simply states that of any given set of explanations for an event occurring, the simplest one is most likely the correct one. How Occam’s Razor Works https://science.howstuffworks.com/innovation/scientific-experiments/occams-razor.htm?

What could be the explanation for dozens and  dozens of change orders being paid before the plans for the new school were even approved? Seneca Middle School plans were approved in September 2006 ( date highlighted on state letter ,and last spreadsheet below in green.),

 

 

 

 

 

Yet the entire year prior to the architectural plans being approved, there are change orders [highlighted in  ***  yellow]such as ‘Excavate foundations deeper,add wood framing to anchor doors, kitchen revisions, 250k for lockers?…’ How could this be? The school is not even approved to be built yet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The last spreadsheet  is from September 2006 ,the month the plans were approved. I called the State of MI today. Plan review bureau, just to double check. No construction  could have been going on before the plans were approved.

Knowing this, here’s what the experts look for in ‘Change Order Abuse’:

 

 

 

 

 

Applying the experts criteria to our change orders= Red Flags:

-Are the “bid alternates” highlighted  in red really that? Did the original bidders actually do the work, with these line items getting paid out without the work really being done?

-Are the same contractors getting the jobs over and over?

-Are the same officials ordering and approving these change orders?

-Are we paying again for items that are already  listed in the original contract?

-Are there multiple changes to  the original contract? 18 changes to a contract?

Minimally, this ‘Change order abuse or chaos’ makes it difficult to track the flow of money. Horrible deal for taxpayers.

Could the explanation for these change orders be complete inept planning and construction project management by the architect/contract manager?  What is the (simplest) explanation?

I’ve been asked on social media sites “So What?… these are from 13 years ago;old news”

It does matter:

1.) Leopards don’t change their spots. If fraudulent change orders  were going on in the past, it still may be going on.

2.) The school district is $900 million dollars in debt after years of financial joyriding. If they default, they will come after the taxpayers and raise our mills. They’ve already done it once.

3. ) There is no Statute of Limitation on fraud.  If anyone involved with these projects, whether private or elected, took even $1 they shouldn’t have, it will matter. Every contractor and elected public official in Macomb County may be under scrutiny right now.

 

 

Coming soon: Marijuana debate

 

 

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