MDHA DEVELOPMENT CORP: A PRIMER
In 2000, the Miami-Dade County Commission unanimously voted to create the private, nonprofit MDHA Development Corp. to finance and build a 100-unit apartment complex for the elderly. The group quickly grew into one of the busiest developers in the county. Today, most of its projects are behind schedule or dead. Here's who was involved:
The group's first president and executive director, who ran the nonprofit while leading the Miami-Dade Housing Agency. As the Housing Agency director, he funneled the nonprofit millions of dollars. He resigned from the nonprofit and the Housing Agency in 2004 but signed on to become the nonprofit's $5,500-a-month consultant. He later became a partner in a spinoff company with the team providing assisted-living services in the nonprofit's new building for the elderly.
Longtime official at the Housing Agency and an original member of the nonprofit's board. Brewster resigned from the nonprofit in 2004. He replaced Rodriguez as head of the Housing Agency, and in 2005, asked the nonprofit to return $1 million of the county's money, loaned for affordable housing that has never been built. The nonprofit refused.
Longtime board member and current chairman of the nonprofit. Duffie is a developer involved in county building projects. His wife, Emma Duffie, until recently was in charge of the Housing Agency's land program. Earlier this year, the nonprofit awarded a $13.5 million project to Red Rock Global, Alben Duffie's business partner on a Miami Parking Authority project.
Maria de Pedro-Gonzalez:
Nonprofit executive director since January 2004. While the nonprofit's building projects were behind schedule, de Pedro-Gonzalez in 2005 was paid a $120,000-a-year annual salary plus $150 a month as an "executive benefit." She was an administrator at the Housing Agency under Rodriguez before moving to the nonprofit.
Local attorney whose companies have received almost $1.6 million from the Housing Agency for projects that have never been built. In 2004, the nonprofit paid $750,000 to form a partnership with Rivero on another building project that has never materialized. The following year, Rivero, as chairman of the Miami Parking Authority, voted to award a parking garage contract to Alben Duffie's for-profit development group.
County commissioner who voted in favor of creating the nonprofit and later sponsored a resolution directing $3 million to one of the nonprofit's building projects. Rolle's social service agency, the James E. Scott Community Association, received the no-bid food service contract at the nonprofit's new building for the elderly.
Barbara Jordan: As an assistant county manager, Jordan sat on the nonprofit's original board. She resigned in 2003. Now a county commissioner, Jordan calls the nonprofit's track record "dismal."