Has outgoing Broward Mayor Ken Keechl tacitly admitted that he defrauded his own election campaign out of thousands of dollars?
Keechl and Adcock put the Wilton Manors bungalow on the market two months ago, apparently in advance of that campaign account -- which was stuffed with about $600,000 from lobbyists and other special interests -- running dry.
The price, according to MLS listings, was recently reduced to $419,999 for the 1,200-square-foot home turned office. That's about $35,000 less than what they paid for it in 2006.
Apparently they're willing to take the loss rather than risk the rental market at this time. But here's where it gets really interesting: Keechl and Adcock are also trying to rent the building. And it appears they've been playing an elaborate game with their asking prices to coincide with helping themselves to thousands of dollars extra in campaign largess.
Inside, see what they are asking for rent -- and you be the judge as to whether it effectively amounts to a confession to stealing from the campaign.
The price Keechl and Adcock are now asking per month: $2,400, according to the official MLS listing.
That is, of course, $700 less per month than they were paying themselves.
Wilton Manors realtor Joe Montrose confirms -- backed up by official records you can see below -- that Keechl and Adcock dropped the rent price on official listings to $2,400 on October 23, just nine days before the election.
There's more. In February 2009, prior to naming the property the campaign headquarters, Adcock and Keechl had the property on the market for $2,400 a month. On March 7, 2009, they mysteriously raised the listing price to $3,100 -- though there was no change in the market (unless it was downward).
The very next day, March 8, 2009, Keechl's campaign cut Adcock the first rent check for $3,100.
There seems to be a pattern here. When there is no campaign to pay the rent, the place is worth $2,400. When the campaign coffers are full of cash and there's a race on, the place is miraculously worth $3,100, a fat 29 percent bump upward.
With those changes in listings, it seems that Keechl and Adcock are admitting that they were paying themselves bloated rent from the campaign. Understand that the mayor has been paying the $3,100 a month on the bungalow since March 2009. If the $2,400 he has the place listed for now and prior is the true market value, that means he and Adcock pocketed some $13,300 in excessive rent payments from the campaign.
Remember that on this blog there was posted a lot of evidence to indicate that the rent Keechl was paying from his campaign was too damned high and that he was making an obscene profit from his political supporters' generosity. Now we appear to have gotten confirmation that we were right from an unlikely place -- the mayor and his partner themselves.
Below is the MLS history on the property -- at 612 NE 26th Street in Wilton Manors -- that you can see for yourself. Notice there were numerous changes in the rental value.
Property History View
ML# Status Price Date Agent Broker DOM
F1094028 A $ 419,999 10/24/10 519203 KWRP01
F1094049 A $ 2,400 10/23/10 519203 KWRP01
F1094049 A $ 2,800 09/30/10 519203 KWRP01
F1094028 A $ 449,000 09/15/10 519203 KWRP01
F1094049 A $ 3,100 09/07/10 519203 KWRP01
F1094028 A $ 449,000 09/07/10 519203 KWRP01
F980101 X $ 3,100 07/11/09 519203 REMX01
F980088 X $ 409,000 06/11/09 519203 REMX01
F980101 W $ 3,100 03/10/09 519203 REMX01
F980101 A $ 3,100 03/07/09 519203 REMX01
F980101 A $ 2,400 02/27/09 519203 REMX01
F980101 A $ 2,600 02/24/09 519203 REMX01
F980088 A $ 409,000 02/24/09 519203 REMX01
F980088 A $ 429,000 02/10/09 519203 REMX01
F980088 A $ 489,000 01/20/09 519203 REMX01
F980101 A $ 2,800 01/11/09 519203 REMX01
F980088 A $ 529,000 01/11/09 519203 REMX01
F786266 X $ 2,200 04/25/07 519203 REMX01
F786266 A $ 2,200 12/19/06 519203 REMX01
F786266 A $ 1,900 11/25/06 519203 REMX01
F716795 CS $ 455,000 04/28/06 519203 REMX01 8
F716795 PS $ 525,000 03/31/06 3072732 BWIP03 8
F716795 A $ 525,000 03/23/06 3072732 BWIP03