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Lynda Berger, Grand Forks, Published October 03 2012

Letter: Public record, personal experience expose Berg’s role with company

Why is Rick Berg denying any association with Goldmark Property Management? He denies having any “involvement” with the rental and property management part of Goldmark for decades. That is simply not true.

I worked for the Grand Forks Housing Authority for 20 years administering low-income housing assistance programs. Our clients were low-income people whose rent was subsidized by the federal government’s programs. Many of our clients rented from Goldmark Property Management, which agreed to follow the government limits on how much rent it could charge. In 2001 some low-income tenants complained about Goldmark charging them extra, on top of the regular monthly rent, for things like using garages, a parking space or the basement.

The Housing Authority started an investigation into Goldmark Property Management’s practices. Goldmark Property Management claimed ignorance of the fact that Section 8 housing contracts forbid charging assisted tenants extra for things that other unassisted tenants get as a standard part of their rent, although it was clearly stated in the contract.

In response, Berg, with his attorney Greg Thompson, drove up from Fargo to meet with me over these rental property problems. I sat with them and discussed face to face how these actions were in violation of the federal contracts Goldmark Property Management Inc. signed. Goldmark Property Management dragged out resolving the issues throughout 2002.

At the end of negotiating with the city, Thompson, Goldmark Property Management’s attorney, requested that all of these dealings be kept “confidential.” The city attorney explained that because of North Dakota’s Open Records law, these are matters of public record.

Why would Berg come to Grand Forks to discuss Goldmark Property Management concerns if he has “never had any involvement with Goldmark Property Management”? Many people have dealt personally with Berg about problems renting with Goldmark Property Management. Is this Berg’s idea of honesty and the North Dakota way? He is not the kind of person I want representing North Dakota in the Senate.