Well, sort of an update. I am still waiting for a reply to what did or did not happen on September 18th at the Mann building.
I am more confused than ever. It is clear that - for whatever reason - the terms of the lease were enforced by the district. I have no idea what is really going on because the terms of the lease are fairly clear.
There was a letter sent to Superintendent Banda on August 1, 2013 from the group, NPARC, the Non-Profit Anti-Racism Coalition, outlining the situation and that they wanted to stay in the Mann building.
In the first paragraph, it is noted that NPARC "is an alliance of mainly human service organizations in King Country who are committed to identifying and dismantling institutional and structural racism." It goes on to name "partners" such as Wellspring Family Services, YMCA, Childhaven" and a couple of others. The letter then launches into a history and explanation of the situation at Mann.
There are no partners or coalition members named at the NPARC website other than Julia Ismael, Keiko Ozeki and Toi Sing Woo.
I was curious about the inclusion of groups like the YMCA and Wellspring. I contacted all of them and, not surprisingly, most are are confused. It seems that they have limited connections to NPARC but are not partners and, despite the linkage of their names in this letter, have no knowledge of it at all. (UPDATE: Wellspring is a paid member of NPARC but had no knowledge of their mention in the letter to the Superintendent.)
There is only one signature to the letter and it is the Chair, Julia Ismael. She asks for an answer by August 9, 2013 and says, "Again, if no satisfactory resolution is reached by August 15th, the expiration date of the current lease, we will initiate our publicity campaign and support more direct actions."
As you will see below, NPARC was never a signed leasee for the building so why they wrote to the Superintendent is unclear.
I can give some more background on the lease/short-term agreement.
- the original lease was with one tenant - Peoples Family Life Center.
- the lease was from October 1, 2010 to June 15, 2013 "inclusive". So the lease was signed, knowing it would end in 2013. The district didn't just pull this out when the capacity management issue became apparent.
- However, on June 15, 2013, there was a "Short Term Revocable Occupancy Agreement" signed. It states, "This is not a lease. This is Short Term Revocable Occupancy Agreement gives Occupant only the right to use the premises for a limited period of time, and is revocable at the will of the Owner." It further states that the Owner can terminate the Agreement within five calendar days notice and can change the locks if the Occupant fails to remove its possessions during this time period. This was with a different group - Seattle Amistad School - which I believe was the original subleasee to the Peoples Family Life Center.
The rent is $100 to be used to pay the utilities. So the Seattle Amistad School - and whoever else is in the building - have been using it since June 15, 2013 for this amount. The security deposit was waived as well. The document states this is because the District will need to be in and out of the building for "capital planning purposes."
It states that the ONLY use for the building is the Seattle Amistad School for K-5 childcare and bilingual education and "for no other purpose without the prior written consent of the Owner."
It states the original agreement with Peoples Family life has been terminated and that the Seattle Amistad School could stay until August 16, 2013.
- the rent for the original lease was $3,334.00 per month with that same amount required as a security deposit
- the building could only be used for "business purpose" - Youth and family education and job training only. (Pretty vague.)
- "it is the intent of the parties that Tenant, as the sole user of the Premises, shall assume all responsibility for the operation and maintenance of the Premises..." So the district went into this agreement, as did the original tenant, with the idea there would be one single tenant in the building.
- Tenant shall comply fully with all Seattle School Board Policies now or hereafter in respect to the Premises and Tenant's activities therein.
- the lease was signed by Jocquelyn L. Duncan, named as Chair and Officer
- the lease also notes that if the Tenant or "allows subcontractors" operate a day care or other child-serving programs (where parents are not present), they have to provide evidence of insurance against child abuse. It also states that if they do have child-serving programs that the staff who have access to children on the Premises have to take the Adult Sexual Misconduct (ASM) training class approved or provided by the district. I have no idea if either thing happened given that there were children being served in the building but I've asked to see documentation of this.
- the lease also clearly stated that the Tenant cannot sublet the premises (or any part of it) without the prior written consent of Landlord in each instance, which may be withheld in Landlord's sole discretion. We know this wasn't done because the district didn't even know all the parties using the building. It also says that any transfer without the landlord's consent, by the sole discretion of the Landlord, be void and "shall constitute a default hereunder which, at the option of the Landlord, shall result in the termination of this Lease..."
- it also states, "Landlord does not by this Lease, in any way or for any purpose, become a partner or joint venturer of Tenant in the conduct of its business or otherwise."
In this statement we see that the district was never in partnership with any of these groups but acting only as Landlord.