Dianne Feinstein
Senator Dianne Feinstein

New "Byrne Report" proves Senator Feinstein's husband in bed with Station Casinos

Investigative Reporter Peter Byrne has discovered the ongoing financial relationship between Richard Blum & Station Casinos!
News from Sonoma County & Around the Nation June 18,2010


Richard Blum, Station Casinos, Colony Capital & UC Regents Business Dealings

An explosive report from investigative reporter Peter Byrne has revealed an on-going financial relationship between Senator Feinstein's husband Richard Blum, Station Casinos and Colony Capital involving millions of dollars of University of California money.

In "Investor's Club: How the UC Regents Spin Public Funds into Private Profit" found on Spot.us , Byrne examines the financial dealings of University of California Regent Richard Blum including his direct link to Station Casinos, the company that is trying to build a Class III casino in the small University town of Rohnert Park, CA in partnership with the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria.

Byrne reveals that Richard Blum's real estate firm, CB Richard Ellis, of which Blum is the Chairman of the Board, touts itself as the ""the leading global casino real estate advisor.".

In his study of the Station Casinos connection, Bryne reports

"Study No. 3: Colony Capital
Since 2007, UC has invested millions of dollars with Colony Capital, a Los Angeles private investment firm. One of Colony Capital's principal partners is Richard Nanula, a longtime trustee of the University of California, Santa Barbara. One of Colony's business partners is Mr. Blum. The intersection of financial interests between UC, Colony Capital, and Mr. Blum is revealed through the workings of the leveraged buyout deals of Fairmont Raffles Holdings International in Toronto and Station Casinos in Las Vegas...

"Station Casinos
Las Vegas, Nevada
The Players:
� The Fertitta family operates and partially owns Station Casinos, one of the largest casino chains in Nevada. Until three years ago, it was a publicly traded company.
� Real estate firm CB Richard Ellis bills itself as "the leading global casino real estate advisor."
The Blum Connection: Mr. Blum is the chairman of the board and a controlling shareholder of CB Richard Ellis. He is a member of the board of directors of the hotel chain Fairmont Raffles Holdings International, owned by Colony Capital. He is also an investor in a Colony Capital acquisition fund.
The Deal: In 2007, Colony Capital partnered with the Fertitta family in a $5.7 billion leveraged buyout (taking the public company private). Colony partly financed the deal with Colony Capital VIII. U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission records show that as the deal was being negotiated, Station Casinos hired CB Richard Ellis to evaluate the Fertitta-Colony offering to Station Casino's public shareholders. CB Richard Ellis was charged with determining if the offering was fairly priced. Mr. Blum's firm told Station Casino shareholders that the deal was a solid investment.
UC's Investment: While Mr. Blum served on the regents' investment committee, UC invested $16.6 million in the Colony Capital fund (Colony Capital VIII) which bought Station Casinos in a deal that was partly overseen by CB Richard Ellis, a company Regent Blum controls. The deal benefited Colony Capital, a firm to which Mr. Blum is deeply connected through investments and a board directorship.
Fallout: Not long after it was privatized, Station Casinos declared bankruptcy due to the combined effects of the recession and the $1.6 billion operating debt that its new owners had imposed on the company via the buyout. Former shareholders of Station Casinos claimed that the deal was not in their best interest, as CB Richard Ellis had claimed. The Colony Capital fund that financed the Station Casinos buyout (Colony Capital VIII) has lost more than half its value due to the soured deal, enraging institutional investors. As of December 2009, the value of UC's investment in Colony Capital VIII had decreased by $6.3 million."

In addition to the Station Casinos information, Bryne outlines a number of questionable deals directed by UC Regent Blum.
More info....

Most of remember that Senator Feinstein has been MIA for the most part on the Rohnert Park casino, even while taking direct action on the San Pablo casino.

A cursory review of Senator Feinstein's Senate Public Disclosure Financial Report filed in May, 2007 reveals that the Senator owned "$205,001 - $500,000" of common stock in CB Richard Ellis, the most recent Blum-controlled company to do business with Station Casinos, Inc..

STC101 has learned that Blum's business relationship with Station Casinos goes back to at least 2001-2002. By the time the Graton Rancheria project came along in 2003, Blum-controlled Perini Construction had already made millions from Station Casinos projects, including Station Casinos' first California tribal casino, Thunder Valley.

According information, some of which was developed by STC101 and some of which was received from a third party and verified by STC101, Perini made in excess of $1 billion from Station Casinos building projects.

Here's the time-line for some of Richard Blum's business dealings with Station Casinos:

(?) 2002: Perini begins construction on Station Casinos' Green Valley Ranch Station in Henderson NV.

October 2002: Perini begins construction begins on Thunder Valley tribal casino financed, developed and to be managed by Station Casinos Inc. of Las Vegas.

April 2003: Graton announces plans to open a casino in partnership with Station Casinos

February 2004: Station Casinos Inc. awards Perini Building Co. a $63 million construction contract to expand Green Valley Ranch Station

April 2004: Perini awarded multi-million dollar contract on Station Casinos' deluxe Red Rock Resort.

October 2005: Blum divests himself of Perini interests due to controversy surrounding charges of nepotism and favoritism on federal and state levels.

(?) 2007: According to Peter Byrne, Blum's "CB Richard Ellis" contracts with Station Casinos to do land valuations for Rohnert Park properties and other CA properties for the deal that took Station Casinos private.

With Senator Boxer's son Doug's involvement in the original casino plan near Sears Point and Senator Feinstein's husband making millions from Station Casinos contracts, what chance do their Sonoma County constituents have for fair representation in the U.S. Senate on the matter of the the Graton Rancheria casino?

More Reading:

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