Today's Equipment Leasing Headlines
Archives---April 3, 2002
Broker/Funder/Industry Lists | Features (writer's columns)
You May have Missed---
######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release” and was not written by Leasing News nor information verified, but from the source noted. When an article is signed by the writer, it is considered a “by line.” It reflects the opinion and research of the writer.
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Archives---April 3, 2002
Finance executive Michael A. Price has paid $442,661 in restitution and penalties after he pleaded guilty last July to attempting to evade about $280,000 in state taxes on a 73-foot yacht, the Washington State Department of Revenue said.
T&W Leasing was one of the first to use securitization, went public, and was basically very successful until it moved out of the small ticket marketplace. Both Mike and Tom remained in real estate, but did leases with other partners, Leasing News was told. After the bankruptcy, only one officer was left holding the bag, it is reported, and he went to jail. In May, 2006 Paul B. Luke, CPA, 50, of Omaha, Nebraska, was sentenced to one year in prison, three years of supervised release and $1.2 million in restitution. According to records in U.S. District Court in Tacoma, Luke created a fraudulent lease agreement in order to draw more than $1 million from a line of credit T&W had with Bank of America. The money was used to pay T&W's officers, a partners car leases, and it was the $1.2 million loan default with BofA that pushed the company into bankruptcy.
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"On or about February 15, 2010, Leasing News published two defamatory pieces. The first report alleged unconfirmed ‘ethical violations’ by ACS (Ability Capital Solutions) and MBC (Matrix Capital Corporation) in relation to EarthArtist Mountain Studio-Campus LLC, (Seneca, South Carolina) a company that attempted to pledge fraudulent collateral for a loan with ACS."(1)
(The second report ran prior due to receiving the response from Mr. Casteleyn, Jr.) (2)
April 3, 2015, fom Mike Lentine, of EarthArtist Mountain Studio-Campus LLC:
Hasn't Spoken to an Equipment Leasing Company Since"I cannot say very much about Mr. Acosta and his company.
"I don't recall mention of fraudulent collateral. We stated early on in our dealing with Ability that we would not pledge our real property. After sending in the $5,000 deposit, we seldom heard back from them.
The complaint was brought to Leasing News on October 27, 2009, where the broker involved emailed to Leasing News: "Brian (Acosta) has not refunded a dime to customer, and has told him he will have to wait until the end of Jan. He was also told that if he insists on his $ sooner, he won’t see any of it."
This complaint went on for over three months. In fact the complaint was not posted until February 10, 2010, and was well documented with 9 notes and five footnotes. (3) For over three months, there was a National Association of Equipment Leasing Broker (NAELB) complaint, many emails between NAELB legal counsel Joseph Bonanno, Esq., Brian Acosta, Leasing News, Michael Lentine, and others. The NAELB case was halted when Brian Acosta’s attorney Mark M. Scott of Buchalter Nemer filed a suit on February 9, 2010, against “EarthArtist Mountain Studio-Campus, LLC, Michael Lentine, and DOEs 1 through 20, inclusive, Defendants,” as NAELB policy is not to consider a complaint during a lawsuit.
During this over three month period, there was no mention in any of the emails, any of the discussions, letters, NAELB complaint documents sent by Brian Acosta, regarding fraudulent collateral. Most importantly, in the lawsuit filed by Acosta's attorney Mark M. Scott of Buchalter Nemer, there was no mention regarding an attempt by Earth Artist Mountain Studio-Campus, LLC, or Michael Lentine, to pledge fraudulent collateral (4). The claim of fraudulent collateral never came up.
In addition, Blue Star Capital and its affiliates were not licensed as a "broker" or "finance lender" in the State of California. They were not operating legally, which was published in the original complaint. This would also apply to other complaints published until the date of their license:
((Please Click on Bulletin Board to learn more information))
New Hires---Promotions in the Leasing Industry
Larry J. Kamin was hired as Account Executive, North Mill Capital. He was hired by Sovereign Business Capital, September, 2005, and in January 2010, named Workout Officer, for Sovereign Santander. Prior, he was Vice President, Business Alliance Capital Group (January, 1999-August, 2005). Education: The City University of New York, Brooklyn College. BS, Accounting (1976 – 1980).
Leasing Industry Help Wanted
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Escrow Company Loses to Bank
Case Again Underscores Necessity of Companies Using Wire Transfers to Have Adequate Security, Usually a Dual Control System. Failure to Heed Bank’s Warnings Cost Escrow Company $440,000, Plus the Bank’s Attorney Fees
By Tom McCurnin
Choice Escrow and Land Title, LLC v. BancorpSouth Bank, 2014 WL 2598764 (8th Cir. 2014).
“I remind myself every morning: Nothing I say this day will teach me anything. So if I'm going to learn, I must do it by listening.”
Some people just don’t listen. In today’s case, an escrow company was more concerned about employee’s schedules than listening to the Bank that handled its wire transfers. The failure to listen cost the escrow company $440,000, plus the Bank’s attorney fees, a net turnaround of $600,000. The facts follow.
Choice Escrow is a Springfield Missouri land and title company, handling both title policies and escrow services. Obviously, most of the funds it handles are processed through wire transfers. Choice Escrow banked with Mississippi based BankSouth since 2009.
Consistent with the Bank’s policies, BankSouth offered Choice Escrow wire services based on its “dual control” security system, whereby the customer could only wire transfer funds out when two people logged into the Bank’s internet site. Choice Escrow refused that security system due to the fact that two employees might not be present each time a wire was needed.
Ever vigilant, the Bank required Choice Escrow to sign a memo which stated that Choice was warned to have a dual control security system, and declined. The memo further stated that the Bank cannot protect customers that do not utilize a dual control system. The underlying wire transfer agreement had the following indemnification language:
“As long as BancorpSouth has performed as provided in Section 8 above, the Customer shall indemnify and hold BancorpSouth harmless from any and all claims, damages, losses, liabilities, and costs and expenses, including reasonable attorney's fees, which relate in any manner to the Services performed under this Agreement.”
The Bank wasn’t done trying to save Choice Escrow from itself. The Bank received a warning from the Fed that fraudsters were attacking companies like Choice Escrow with emails with a Trojan Horse attachment which was a keystroking logger. One of the Bank’s Directors again contacted Choice, explained the scam and pleaded with Choice to install a dollar limit to every wire and dual control. Choice Escrow refused:
“Actually I don't think that would be a good procedure for us-lots of times Paige is here by herself and that would be really tough unless we all shared pass words.”
Sometime after this exchange, a Choice employee fell prey to a phishing attack and contracted a computer keystroke logging virus which gave an unknown third party access to the employee's username and password. $440,000 was wired out of the account to an unknown third party.
Choice sued, claiming that the security procedure used by BankSouth was commercially unreasonable, claiming that the security procedure must include a process whereby a banker manually reviews every payment order submitted to the bank to ensure that no irregularities exist-what Choice calls “transactional analysis.”
BancorpSouth's management testified that the Bank conducts tens of thousands of wire transfers daily on behalf of its roughly 400,000 checking account customers and that reviewing each one of these transactions would be impracticable.
The Court found that the Bank was not required, under the various agreements and the facts, that a bank was required to perform a “transactional analysis” for every wire transfer.
The Court further found that the Bank’s dual control security procedure, offered and declined by Choice Escrow, was commercially reasonable and used by many banks as an effective security procedure. Although Choice stated that having two senior employees present at the same time would be inconvenient, Choice misunderstood the nature of dual control. Dual control allows one employee to create a pending payment order in the morning, and a second employee may come into the office in the afternoon and confirm the pending payment order.
Therefore, the Court affirmed the trial court’s granting of BankSouth’s motion for summary judgment—the Bank won, Choice Escrow lost, and lost big, $440,000 worth. It couldn’t get much worse.
But it did. The Bank’s wire transfer agreement contained an indemnity clause which required the customer to indemnity the Bank in the event the Bank complied with the agreed upon security procedure. Although the trial court refused to enforce the indemnity, the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals did, making Choice Escrow liable for a wad of the Bank’s costs (over $92,000) and attorney fees.
What are the lessons here for equipment lessors?
• First, the Lessor obviously uses wires to pay vendors. Make sure your company uses an up to date security procedure, either dual control, or a physical component, such as a USB dongle.
• Second, listen to the Bank. If it recommends a security system, your company would be well served to take notice.
• Third, I have not seen the indemnity provision of BankSouth being used by other banks, and it certainly came as a surprise to me that it existed and the Bank won on that issue. It should be noted that costs alone, excluding attorney fees totaled over $92,000, so Choice Escrow is on the hook for almost $600,000! Perhaps someone should have read that clause before filing suit. That type of clause may dis-incentivize bank customers from suing the Bank, unless the customer has a really good case.
The bottom line to this case is to listen—listen to the Bank that handles your accounts. Perhaps like Larry King, you might learn something.
Choice Escrow Case
Tom McCurnin is a partner at Barton, Klugman & Oetting
Previous Tom McCurnin Articles:
“Evergreen Clause”—The Danger of Automatic Renewal
The inclusion of automatic renewal (or “evergreen”) clauses in true leases has been a fairly common practice from time immemorial. It is included in most company leasing contracts, whether "fair market value," 10%options, or even $1.00 (Yes, companies will continue payments if not notified and there have been several cases where the residual is $1.00)
There is no question that these clauses provide important protections to the lessor to obtain their residual. If the lessee has no intent to renew, the lessor has in interest in knowing it before the end of the term so that he can start planning for remarketing or some other disposition of the equipment.
However, the question of whether a lessee should be reminded by the lessor of the notice deadline in plenty of time for the lessee to react is an entirely different question. These states have statutes requiring commercial equipment lessors to provide a written notice – a fair warning – before the notice deadline date arrives:
This is an unofficial list:
Most of the abuses occur in the small-ticket world. Larger lessees often overlook the notification clause in the contract or do not have “tickler” systems to remind them. Consider the corner dry-cleaner. He signs up for a five year lease in 2014. Does he mark it 90 days before the expiration in his computer calendar for 2019, or more important, did he overlook this as the residual is 10% or a $1.00. And the more apt question is: What possible interest does a lessor have in not voluntarily reminding its customer of the notice deadline – unless it’s to create a chance that the lessee will slip up and get trapped in a renewal it does not want?
Companies who utilize Evergreen Clauses
These companies use language in their lease documents regarding purchase options to confuse, perhaps to deceive, resulting in an automatic continuation for an additional twelve months of payments. Often they win transactions with lower monthly payments as the lessee does not carefully read and prepare for the end-of-lease notification requirement (many are on ACH payments).
Several have continuation of payments and the requirement of replacing the equipment for a new lease. Leasing News has had complaints involving companies who invoke the twelve months on a $1.00 purchase option, as well as on an Equipment Finance Agreements.
Several have appeared in Leasing News "Complaints" Bulletin Board:
Additionally, Tom McCurnin has written often about Evergreen Clause court cases involving these companies.
Two of the companies on this list do a lot of copier leasing, where it is reported manufacturers are now getting a piece of auto-renewals and as well as insisting that they be in the lease as a condition of the business. Leasing News has heard from a very reliable source that some copier manufacturers also give dealers 4-5 months’ notice of a discontinued model and agree to sell it to the dealer at 40% of list price, on the condition that the captive finance division not receive the business. Also buried in the contract on one is a one month rental return fee including an inspection fee at the location specified by lessor and at lessee’s return expense (often not the local dealer who supplied the copier).
Advice for Broker or Lessor
ACC Capital, Midvale, Utah
ACC Capital, Midvale, Utah---This company is no longer in business, although its portfolio is being wound down, according to its owner Loni Lowder; the receivables are being collected by creditors. Lowder today is an employee, manager, Stalwart Contract Finance, Salt Lake City, Utah. All Evergreen Clause complaints have not been satisfied, but were when the company was active.
De Lage Landen, Wayne, Pennsylvania -- $34,560 in lease payments were collected illegally, although the lease contract had an Evergreen clause that if the lessee did not notify in 90 days before expiration, the payments would continue. It appears this went on for almost three years. The purchase option was 10%.
What makes it even more shameless is a collection agency was involved after payments stopped, but wait, it gets worse: the lessee has settled with the funder and the funder's collection agency, but the lessor, who sold the lease to the funder, De Lage Landen (DLL,) remains in the suit as being party, or “in collusion,” with the Evergreen clause collection matter. The fact is the lessor was not directly involved in the collection of payments or received any remuneration, as well as the suit continues, now solely against the lessor.
IFC Credit, Morton Grove, Illinois---This company is in bankruptcy, appeared many times in the Leasing News Bulletin Board prior to filing bankruptcy, but engaged in Evergreen Clauses, and unfortunately a recent example is a complaint to the trustee, stemming from M&T Bank lease assignment expiring and notify the lessee that they did not notify about the residual, which was a $1.00. This has happened many times with other banks who have taken over the IFC Credit Corporation portfolio. Calls and letters to the trustee and attorneys have gone unanswered.
Jules and Associates, Los Angeles, California--- Jules and Associates, Los Angeles, California---A repeat customer, who notified Jules and Associates on a lease, but was not before the 180 day expiration, so Jules and Associates instead of the 1% due for the residual ($2,308.79) charged six more payments or $40,463.94, and if 1% is not paid in this time, they will be subject to another three months.
LEAF Financial Group, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania---It appears this company is in a more wind down phase, moving its operation of LEAF Commercial Credit with basically the same management. There have been complaints about the Evergreen Clause, including one this year for an Equipment Finance Agreement!
Marlin Business Leasing, Mount Laurel, New Jersey---The actual SEC filings state the profit earned from Evergreen Clause, primarily from copier leases. Bulletin Board Complaints have been received about this practice in addition to the SEC financial statement filings. (9) Marlin Response to posting.
When the company was bought and became Pacific Western Equipment Finance (a division of Pacific Western Bank) he maintained the same position. It was noted his old company was still on the list, and a request of his "master lease" was made.
"Our docs are the same as when we were with Marquette. Because we’re public now, it is very difficult to get documents released."
I asked him if he could send to a broker wanting to do business with him, "Sorry, can’t forward to you or your brokerage."
A search of PACER, a national index for U.S. district, bankruptcy and appellate courts brought up a number of Marquette cases, and the first one hit pay dirt: Merchants & Farmers Bank, a Mississippi Corporation versus Marquette Equipment Finance and Applied Financial. It was a similar case and while "dismissed with prejudice" (6), it had the arguments regarding the purchase option and a copy of the complete contract with a similar PPR as with Mazuma Capital:
"(g) Lessee's Options at End of Initial Period. At the end of the Initial Period of any Lease, Lessee shall, provided at least one-hundred-eighty (180) days prior written notice is received by Lessor from Lessee via certified mail, do one of the following: (1) purchase the Property for a price to be determined by Lessor and Lessee, (2) extend the Lease for twelve (12) additional months at the rate specified on the respective Schedule, or (3) return the Property to Lessor at Lessee's expense to a destination within the continental United States specified by Lessor and terminate the Schedule; provided, however, that for option (3) to apply, all accrued but unpaid late charges, interest, taxes, penalties, and any and all other sums due and owing under the Schedule must first be paid in full, the provisions of Sections 6(c) and (d) and 7(c) hereof must be specifically complied with, and Lessee must enter into a new Schedule with Lessor to lease Property which replaces the Property listed on the old Schedule. With respect to options (1) and (3), each party shall have the right in its absolute and sole discretion to accept or reject any terms of purchase or of any new Schedule, as applicable. In the event Lessor and Lessee have not agreed to either option (1) or (3) by the end of the Initial Period or if Lessee fails to give written notice of its option via certified mail at least one-hundred-eighty (180) days prior to the termination of the Initial Period, then option (2) shall apply at the end of the Initial Period. At the end of the extension period provided for in option (2) above, the Lease shall continue in effect at the rate specified in the respective Schedule for successive periods of six (6) months each subject to termination at the end of any such successive six-month renewal period by either Lessor or Lessee giving to the other party at least ninety (90) days prior written notice of termination."
The first option is to purchase the equipment for a price to be determined by Lessor and Lessee and requires a certified letter 180 days prior. This sounds like a fair market purchase option, but the “price to be determined” language means that the Lessor can set any price it wants. This option is illusory in my opinion.
The second option is to continue the lease for an additional 12 months, the “Evergreen” period. No notice of this provision is given to the lessee either in advance of signing or prior to exercising this option. Republic Bank purchases these 12 month extensions in advance of their exercise. How would the bank know that the lessee is going to exercise this option, unless everyone knows it is the only practical option for the lessee to exercise? Republic Bank President Boyd Lindquist confirmed in a telephone call that he “buys” these extensions from Mazuma and has for quite some time.
The third option is to return the equipment, but the clause is draped with the condition that the lessee has to re-lease identical equipment for a similar term. It also has 180 day certified letter requirement, and applies to the second option of 12 months, but also has the clause of an automatic six month option. So what is the point of exercising this option? At the end of this re-lease, there would be the same three identical options, so the lessee would be required to re-lease and re-lease. It’s just like Groundhog Day.
Leasing News is working on obtaining information on other companies so named to add to the list, including follow-up on the master lease for Pacific Western Equipment Finance. If you have a copy, please send and will keep your name “off the record.”
((7) See for Copy of Filing, including contract.)
Mazuma Capital Corp, Draper, Utah Several routie "end of lease agreements, as alleged in Unified Container and Anderson Dairy (1) "8. The basic scheme involves the inclusion of a purchase, renewal, return (“PRR”) provision in the lease. The lessor assures the customer they will be able to purchase the equipment at the end of the initial term in the lease for a reasonable or nominal price. Often, the lessor promises the equipment can be purchased at a fixed percentage of the total amount financed. However, at the end of the initial lease term, the lessor refuses to honor the agreed upon purchase price or negotiate in good faith regarding a purchase price, but instead, insists the lease automatically renews for an additional term (usually twelve months).
9. The inclusion of the purchase and return options in the lease are entirely illusory and intended only to give the customer the false impression that it can exercise any of the three options at the end of the initial lease term, when in fact, the lessor will only allow an automatic renewal at the end of the initial lease term.) There are other exhibits. This case was settled "out of court."
H. Jared Belnap, past President & CEO, Mazuma Capital Corp., takes exception on beingon the Evergreen list. His full letter and Leasing News Response is at (5).
Onset Financial, South Jordan, Utah --- Onset contract, which contained:
((8) See for Copy of Onset Contract with PPR purchase option.
Dorran Sampson, then Vice-President/Broker Relations, Marquette Equipment Finance, now Vice President Broker Relations Pacific Western Equipment Finance told Leasing News when the company was bought and became Pacific Western Equipment Finance (a division of Pacific Western Bank) they maintained the same position as Marquette.
"Our docs are the same as when we were with Marquette. Because we’re public now, it is very difficult to get documents released."
I asked him if he could send to a broker wanting to do business with him, "Sorry, can’t forward to you or your brokerage.
Leasing News has obtained a copy of a Pacific Western Equipment Finance agreement, and confirms the same procedures as their former company Marquette utilized:
“14. LESSEE’S OPTIONS AT END OF INITIAL PERIOD.
At the end of the Initial Period of any Lease, Lessee shall, provided at least one-hundred-eighty (180) days prior written notice is received by Lessor from Lessee via certified mail, do one of the following: (1) purchase the Property for a price to be determined by Lessor and Lessee, (2) extend the Lease for twelve (12) additional months at the rate specified on the respective Schedule, or (3) return the Property to Lessor at Lessee’s expense to a destination within the continental United States specified by Lessor and terminate the Schedule; provided, however, that for option (3) to apply, all accrued but unpaid late charges, interest, taxes, penalties, and any and all other sums due and owing under the Schedule must first be paid in full, the provisions of Sections 6(c) and (d) and 7(c) hereof must be specifically complied with, and Lessee must enter into a new Schedule with Lessor to lease Property which replaces the Property listed on the old Schedule. With respect to options (1) and (3), each party shall have the right in its absolute and sole discretion to accept or reject any terms of purchase or of any new Schedule, as applicable. IN THE EVENT LESSOR AND LESSEE HAVE NOT AGREED TO EITHER OPTION (1) OR (3) BY THE END OF THE INITIAL PERIOD OR IF LESSEE FAILS TO GIVE WRITTEN NOTICE OF ITS OPTION VIA CERTIFIED MAIL AT LEAST ONE-HUNDRED-EIGHTY (180) DAYS PRIOR TO THE TERMINATION OF THE INITIAL PERIOD, THEN OPTION (2) SHALL APPLY AT THE END OF THE INITIAL PERIOD. At the end of the extension period provided for in option (2) above, the Lease shall continue in effect at the rate specified in the respective Schedule for successive periods of six (6) months each subject to termination at the end of any such successive six (6) month renewal period by either Lessor or Lessee giving to the other party at least thirty (30) days prior written notice of termination” (10) (Also see Marquette listing)
They are legal in all states, except four states require advance notification be given to the lessee regarding termination of the lease and its residual (Four states: New York Rhode Island, Texas, Illinois (In Illinois, Consumer law, but may affect commercial, especially a proprietorship, partnership or personal guarantee)"
“22. Mazuma Capital is associated with Republic Bank and obtains financing for its leases containing PRR provisions from Republic Bank.
23. Like what took place at Amplicon, Inc., the PRR scheme utilized by Matrix, Applied Financial, LLC, Mazuma Capital, Tetra Financial Group, LLC and others has begun to be exposed through litigation and negative press. See Deseret News (2) articles attached hereto as Exhibits B (2) and C. (3)”
Here is a case where New York courts threw out the Evergreen Clause as not legal in New York, even though venue appears to be Utah. (4))
(1) 36 main pdf
(2) Deseret News
(3) Exhibit C
(4) Salon Management case
(6) Order to Dismiss with Prejudice
(7) Copy of filing, including contract
(8) Copy of Onset Contract with PPR purchase option
Companies who notify lessee in advance of lease expiration
(Leasing News provides this ad as a trade for investigative
Companies who notify lessee in advance of lease expiration
These companies do not use language to confuse, perhaps to deceive, with the result an automatic continuation for an additional twelve months of payments. They do not invoke the twelve months on a $1.00 purchase option or an Equipment Finance Agreement.
In its editorial of June 30, 2011, Leasing News recommends that the equipment lessor send a certified letter with return receipt; however, at this time, the acceptance of the word of the president of the company will be accepted until proven otherwise. http://leasingnews.org/archives/Jun2011/6_30.htm#editorial
Leasing Conferences 2015
Funding Source Exhibitors as of March 3, 2015
For more information about this event, you may contact Lesley Sterling at (202)238-3435
The Women in Leasing LinkedIn Group is hosting an April luncheon at the Signature Room in Chicago, Illinois, on Tuesday, April 21st from 1:00 pm – 3:30 pm. The lunch is being hosted by Shari Lipski with ECS Financial Services.
If you are attending the 2015 ELFA National Funding Conference, the Signature Room is a 10 minute cab ride from the hotel and is located on the 95th floor of the John Hancock Building.
If you would like to attend, please RSVP by April 14th to Shari Lipski at 847.897.1711 or via email SLipski@ECSFinancial.com
Talking Stick Resort
Scottsdale’s newest resort destination offers something for everyone, including Vegas-style gaming and entertainment, a relaxing spa treatment, world-class cuisine, and that famous Arizona sun.
The 2015 NVLA Golf Outing will take place on Wednesday, April 22 at 11:30 a.m. This year’s event will be conveniently held at Talking Stick Golf Club, which is located on the grounds of Talking Stick Resort. Designed by Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw, Talking Stick Golf Club has been recognized as a top public golf course in Arizona by Golfweek magazine.
Cost of the event is $95.00 per player, which includes green fee and cart. Rental clubs are available at the club for an additional fee.
If you’re interested in participating in this year’s outing, please contact Rick Damush (Miller Ford) at 609-261-6842 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The NVLA Conference presents vehicle leasing industry partners with a unique opportunity to make and solidify relationships with independent lessors.
NVLA is pleased to offer exhibit tables for member and non-member companies at affordable rates. Each exhibit table package includes a 3’ x 6’ skirted table, complimentary conference registration, and listing on the NVLA website and conference program.
List of Attendees as of March 20, 2015
Hope you paid attention when we suggested bringing your swimsuit to the 2015 NAELB Conference. You should also bring hiking boots.
Even if neither of those activities are 'your thing' Phoenix and the Arizona Grand Resort offer plenty to see and do. Join NAELB April 30-May 2 for great education; networking with current and potential business partners; and these 'must see and do' recommendations from three local NAELB members:
Is culture your thing? NAELB Member Rick Wilbur recommends Taliesin West - Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation; the Musical Instrument Museum; and the Heard Museum - which is dedicated to the various native cultures of the Southwest and Central America. If you're more of an outdoors person, Rick says there is plenty of golf; hiking at Camelback Mountain; hot air balloon rides; or Open Jeep Tours.
Erin McCarthy suggests you check out the Desert Botanical Gardens, the Phoenix Zoo or the South Mountain Preserve if you like outdoor activities. For those who prefer to stay inside, Erin recommends the Phoenix Art Museum, one of the largest museums in the Southwest with more than 18,000 works on display.
If you like good restaurants, Dan Munman suggests Flemings Steakhouse and Z'Tejas, which are near the Arizona Grand Resort; or visit Rustlers Roost, which is right at the Hotel. For thrill seekers, Dan recommends one of the "great kart tracks in America, Octane Raceway in Scottsdale, which gives you the Ultimate Adrenaline Rush!"
The Public Sector Finance Forum is a joint venture of the Association for Governmental Leasing and Financing and the Equipment Leasing Finance Association. The 2015 Forum will be held at the Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel in Denver, CO on May 6 through May 8, 2015.
8th China Leasing Summit 2015
The event is strongly supported by leading companies
The China Leasing Summit is based on over 10 years’ of research into the Chinese leasing industry and will provide an effective platform on which attendees can familiarize themselves with the current status of the market and the latest policies and regulations in order to gain a better understanding of China’s leasing market, thereby optimizing their development strategies. Furthermore, speakers from the government, as well as from the leading leasing companies, will share their invaluable experiences and opinions on the state of China’s leasing industry.
For more information, please go here:
2015 Eastern Regional Meeting
2015 Western Regional Meeting
The amount of oil being shipped by rail
US railroads now carry 33.7 million barrels of oil a month across the country. This is a 50-fold increase in the amount of crude being shipped by rail (CBR) from the 630,000 barrels in January 2010. Previously, most crude produced in the United States was moved by pipeline from Cushing, Oklahoma.
The increase in crude by rail is great for the industry — it can get the massive amounts of crude now being produced where it needs to go using infrastructure that already exists.
But it has its downsides. The ramp-up of crude-carrying trains has exposed the dangers of crude-carrying train derailments. They existed before, but there wasn't enough being shipped for it to pose a big risk.
Reuters' John Kemp explains the problem this poses for the railroads and the oil industry:
“Negotiations between the railroads, oil producers, refiners and the U.S. government about new crude-by-rail regulations and tank car safety standards boil down to the question of how to balance the safety imperative of withdrawing older and less secure tank cars as soon as possible against the commercial imperative of keeping them in service for longer to maintain tank car availability and keep the oil flowing.”
The problem is that the risks are real, but minute for any one shipment. And the rewards are easy to calculate.
April Fools Jokes
Many people were fooled, and others thought it was for real.
It has been a traditional since 2002 when a News Edition falls on
Here is the first one, from April 1, 2002---Definitely Dated, but many
Special April Fool’s Edition
Kit Menkin’s Leasing News
William Gates Buys GE Capital and CIT
William Gates Buys GE Capital and CIT
William Gates buys GE Capital, CIT and the State of New Hampshire for undisclosed dollar amount. To call the new company CITGE. The logo will be a Snauzer with a large dog collar with medal with GE on it. Curt Lynse has been hired to train the dog and run the company.
Gates announced he is moving Microsoft to Portland, Oregon, as he likes the climate better than Seattle. He added it was time that companies came to Oregon, rather than left. It is reported that he is negotiating the purchase of the City of Portland.
Gazelle Leasing—Tom Depping Returns
Tom Depping starts Gazelle Leasing, selling his tobacco farm and
GoodRodi Financial—East to West Coast
Ken Goodman and Bob Rodi have joined their operations together, with Goodman to run the West Coast Operation and Rodi the East Coast Operation. Rodi claims he did not form a family trust and charitable trust “Police Retirement Fund of Baltimore” to protect his assets and has full confidence in the new operation. It is reported they will be using Ken’s old computers on the West Coast. They are so old, they operate by “gas.”
Mike Fleming Retires
Reaching 64, Mike Fleming takes early retirement from the Equipment Leasing Association. He has moved to Wyoming, where he plans to drive his Hummer freely, tired of being restricted in Virginia and Washington, DC, due to its size. He also plans to take up snowboarding and ball room dancing.
The new organization will be called the United Equipment Leasing Association and Do We Have to Include Brokers. New membership fees have funders at $295, service providers $125, and brokers doing business under $1 million, $1500, and for each million dollar of volume, another $500 yearly dues, until $10 million, when they receive a $1,000 rebate and free registrations at all conferences.
Dr. Ray Williams was chosen to replace Fleming.
Newell Runs Away with Britney Spears
In a very private wedding, Jerry Newell and Britney Spears were married in Fairfax, California. The ex-vice-president of Bank of the West Leasing said they met when his department was considering a lease of new recording studio equipment.
“We just hit it off, “he said. “ We both like to have fun.”
Investment Tax Credit Tax Law Signed
President George W. Bush signed into law the 15% investment tax credit and 50% first year depreciation initiative for lessors “...to stimulate the equipment leasing industry. “ The proposal was headed by CITGE president Curt Lynse who visited the White House often, and along with the combined income and assets of both GE Capital and Microsoft, got the president’s ear. He even got to bring his Snauzer with him, who also stayed overnight in the Woodrow Wilson room.
New releases brings bittersweet comedy ("While We're Young") and an acclaimed documentary ("Seymour: An Introduction"), while an Oscar-winning biopic ("The Imitation Game"), a haunting real-life drama ("Wild") and an intense masterpiece ("Cries and Whispers") come to DVD.
While We're Young (A24): Generational clashes and artistic struggles are the subjects of the newest bittersweet comedy by Noah Baumbach ("Frances Ha"), who once again displays his gift for balancing humor and bitterness. The story focuses on Josh (Ben Stiller) and Cornelia (Naomi Watts), a married New York couple who find themselves scrambling to ward off the lulls of middle age. They begin to hang out with Jamie (Adam Driver) and Darby (Amanda Seyfried), two disarming twentysomethings who encourage them to get involved in more carefree, youthful activities. When Josh and Jamie begin collaborating on a documentary, however, the lines between friendship and pretense quickly begin to blur. Often resembling a vintage Woody Allen movie, Baumbach's portrait of aging hipsters is an engaging combo of laughter and neuroses.
Seymour: An Introduction (Sundance Selects): Fresh off his Oscar-nominated performance in Richard Linkater’s "Boyhood," Ethan Hawke steps behind the camera to direct this acclaimed documentary about an exceptional man. Seymour Bernstein is a virtuoso pianist who has for decades dedicated himself to teaching younger people and enriching their lives with music. Now pushing 90, he reflects back on his various students, on his personal connections, and on the serenity and curiosity that continues to push him onward. Featuring insightful interviews, humorous anecdotes and inspiring musical recitals, Hawke's film is a celebration of a man's remarkable passion that sometimes plays like a gentle, real-life response to last year's harrowing drama "Whiplash."
The Imitation Game (Anchor Bay): A mix of biopic and spy thriller, this portrait of famous British mathematician Alan Turing won Best Adapted Screenplay at this year's Oscars. Benedict Cumberbatch gives an acclaimed performance as Turing, whose withdrawn but brilliant mind became invaluable at the height of World War II, when complex German codes needed to be cracked. As part of a top-secret group of young scientists, he uses his skills to try decipher enigmas and change the tide of history. While celebrated by the authorities for his work, he's also persecuted for his private life. Directed by Morten Tyldum and with an impressive supporting cast that includes Keira Knightley and Mark Strong, this is an elegantly mounted character study that shines a light on one of the period's most fascinating figures.
Wild (Fox): Just as Matthew McConaughey won an Oscar under Jean-Marc Vallée's direction in last year's "Dallas Buyers Club," Reese Witherspoon received some of her best reviews for the Canadian filmmaker's latest drama, where she delivers her most committed performance in years. Witherspoon stars as Cheryl, a woman determined to starn a new phase in her life by hiking alone through 1,100 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail. In between her friendly and less-than-friendly encounters, flashbacks reveal the personal backstory of this determined character, including her relationship with her mother (Laura Dern). A plot synopsis may sound uneventful, but the movie transforms her trip through visuals that reflect the heroine's resolve as well as her inner turmoil. Anchored by Witherspoon's brave turn, this is a moving, haunting journey.
Cries and Whispers (Criterion): Specializing in rigorous and intense dramas, Swedish director Ingmar Bergman created shattering works. This is 1972 masterpiece, being re-released in a pristine digital restoration by Criterion, is no exception. Taking place in an isolated cottage in the late 1800s, the film follows the emotional flares ignited when a family gathers for a severely ailing woman named Agnes (Harriet Andersson). Her sisters Karin (Ingrid Thulin) and Maria (Liv Ullman) come to support her, but, as flashbacks reveal, their own lives are overflowing with turmoil. Can redemption be reached, or will their suppressed feelings keep the siblings apart? Featuring a cast of flawless performances and strikingly expressive, Oscar-winning cinematography, Bergman's profoundly personal film is not easily forgotten. With subtitles.
Labrador Retriever Mix
Shelter Staff made the following comments about this animal:
"Hi, my name is GYPSY and I would love to meet you. I am a Spayed Female Labrador Retriever mix. The shelter staff thinks I am about 9 years old. I have been at the shelter since Mar 26, 2015."
For more information about this animal, call:
Humane Society for Tacoma & Pierce County
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This Day in American History
1783 - Birthday of Washington Irving at New York, NY. American author, attorney and one-time US Minister to Spain. Creator of “Rip Van Winkle” and “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”, he was also the author of many historical and biographical works, including “A History of the Life and Voyages of Christopher Columbus” and “The Life of Washington”. Died at Tarrytown, NY, Nov 28, 1859.
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