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Las Vegas Real Estate Blog

Your Las Vegas real estate information source. The latest news, new construction, scandals, additions to the strip and other Las Vegas and related information.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Graft in sin city

In the local news, this was a brief blip on the radar screen. A "real estate consultant" (aka fixer), Donald Davidson, received a two year sentence in federal prison for attempted bribery.

In addition, Davidson, received a fine of $50,000 and will serve three years after prison on supervised release. His sentence was lighter than the recommendation, in part due to his age (72) and letters seeking leniency from Shelley Berkley (Rep. D) and Federal Public Defender Franny Forsman, who wrote in as a "private citizen". Both pointed out his charitable work, family ties and age....which equals up to what exactly? So why he should get off lightly because he is old? Seems to me that he has probably been doing this for a while. A senior citizen doesn't just get up one day and decide he is going to try to bribe a city councilman that day.

Ulitmately Davidson was convicted in July of 2007 on one charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and five charges of wire fraud for attempted bribery of Michael McDonald in 2002. Mr. McDonald was a Las Vegas city councilman at that time.

According to McDonald, he refused Davidson's money. Mr. McDonald was never charged in the case. However, another former county official did testify against him. Erin Kenny, caught in the G-sting scandal, testified that Davidson paid her three grand a month and she voted in favor of a neighborhood casino, plus additional monies after she pushed through a zoning change allowing a pharmacy to be built. Davidson's jury deadlocked on 18 charges relating to charges of bribery of former County Commissioner Kenny. It begs the question as to who else may have been approached by Davidson in the past.

The Wire

Prosecutors had a wiretap recording of Davidson alluding to bribing others for a zoning change. Yet, he received a two year sentence. Of course, if he would have been working in the white house he probably would have just received a pardon.. I guess on this one, Nevadans are going to have to accept whatever justice we can get. Davidson will be turned over to federal authorities by March 28.

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Saturday, January 26, 2008

Monte Carlo Fire

Yesterday I had put up a post about the fire on the strip. At the time, details were a bit sketchy, but at around 11 am, a fire broke out on the roof of the Monte Carlo casino (3770 Las Vegas Blvd. S). The fire spread from the roof to a couple of floors down. The hotel was evacuated and guests are being given alternate accommodations at other MGM properties. Guests not situated or had reservations at the Monte Carlo are urged to call 888-395-0776.

According to the firefighters on the scene, it was a three alarm blaze that was extinguished around 12:15 or so. 120 firefighters from Henderson, Las Vegas and Clark County responded to the exterior fire. No one was seriously injured.

Kudos to MGM for announcing that that all Monte Carlo employees will be paid, plus receive health, welfare benefits and tip replacement. Employees can call 702-693-7005 for more information. There is no official word yet on the cause of the fire.

The strip and and surrounding streets have been re-opened as well. Construction continues on neighboring CityCenter.

Compared to past fires on the strip, the property damage was minor. Still, the Monte Carlo is looking at millions in lost revenue, repairs and wage compensation. I doubt the blaze will make anyone cancel their trip to Las Vegas, but it certainly doesn't help your property to be all over the news because of a fire, especially when its a high rise. I'll post more information as it becomes available.

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Saturday, January 12, 2008

Accident at CityCenter

Yesterday four construction workers were injured when a steel rebar wall fell over. The accident occured around 1 p.m. Friday afternoon (1-11). The 25 foot tall, 150 foot wall was located in the main hotel tower. All four workers were taken to the hospital to be treated for non-life threatening injuries.

CityCenter employes roughly 5,000 workers and construction is still underway. Its due to open late next year.


Accident at Palms Place
Another accident at Fontainebleau


Thursday, January 10, 2008

Obama Town Meeting

The RJ has an article in today's paper stating that Barack Obama is scheduled to meet with the culinary union and there will be a town hall meeting at Del Sol high school. I received a call from Obama campaign staff and received some clarification. According to his staff, the meeting is open to the public, no tickets are required.

The town hall meeting starts at 5 pm at Del Sol high school, located at 3100 E Patrick Lane, Las Vegas, NV 89120 (between Pecos and Eastern). Map

For more information, call 253-2008.

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Saturday, January 05, 2008

2007 most popular posts

This is up a little late, but you know how things go at the end of the year. Several of the blogs I read have put up year in review type posts, or a list of the most popular posts according to their readers for the prior year, so I thought it was a good idea and I would do the same. So here is top 10 list of the most popular posts for 2007.

1. Las Vegas to get a FTZ This post pulled the most traffic for last year and quite a few citations. The Union Park development is going full speed ahead.

2. Las Vegas Foreclosures This was post was a no-brainer to make the list, given the state of market across the country. Investors and bargain hunters have been coming out of the wood work hunting for deals.

3. O J Simpson Surprisingly this post didn't make it to number one, but then again there was a ton of media competition. O J will be going back to court this April.

4. Verge Lofts This is the latest entry into the green condo/loft market. Located in downtown Las Vegas, the project broke ground last month and Verge is reporting about 70% or so of the units have been sold.

5. Chester the Molester The predator was brought to the attention of Nye county authorities due to a video tape, showing him molesting a child. A police officer in Henderson making a routine traffic stop caught Styles. He also was listed on America's Most Wanted.

6. Commercial Real Estate in Lake Las Vegas With nothing but the gleeful reporting on local media about the doom and gloom of the real estate market, it was easy to see why this post drew so much attention. Commercial real estate has been going strong in Lake Las Vegas with some properties selling for over listing price.

7. Las Vegas is going Green The topic of going Green and green products is still red hot and with the continued rising prices of fossil fuels, saving energy and money will be a topic that is talked about for years to come.

8. Murano condo fire Murano was a condo community in Silverado Ranch. While under construction, a fire broke out threatening nearby businesses and destroying the community.

9. Another Las Vegas convention While I was at the convention center, I ran into David Caruso. He is starting his own internet media company.

10. Another Vegas Landmark Gone This was the first demolition of the year. The casualty this time was the Stardust. Sadly a piece of history destroyed (the Frontier needed to go). Members of the Rat pack, Elvis and others played there back in the day. Don Rickles closed down the main show room with its last performance.


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