SAN ANTONIO -- At $15 to $20 a square foot, San Antonio office space is at a premium these days. So, did a local government agency give away office space to the controversial TriHM Foundation?
The foundation hinted that at least $40 million would be on its way to help with some of AACOG programs for the disabled.
The money was expected this month. If it gets the money it will be the first time we’ve ever heard of anyone receiving an actual grant from TriHM.
“Everything’s completed. It just needs furniture, computers and stuff like that," said Pamela Howard, former TriHM Foundation HR director.
The 12-spacious rooms, including a board room, lobby, and a kitchenette-employee break room are all done-up in the TriHM Foundation’s color scheme, ready for move in, courtesy of the Alamo Area Council of Governments.
“After you have a conversation with her, you’re just as pumped up and excited about this as she is,” Howard said.
Former TriHM Foundation employees say the government agency is being taken for a ride by Jackqueline Cooper and her foundation. They say the foundation is using AACOG for its space, and an address to call home.
“Of course, we didn’t have any furniture yet. So, in the meantime we were officing in one of the police academy classrooms," said Howard.
AACOG Director Dean Danos says his was one of dozens of agencies that went through the lengthy process to apply for grant money with TriHM.
“We’ll be glad to be neighborly,” said Danos.
But AACOG then went the extra mile, expecting to sublease portions of its third floor to the foundation.
“The agreement to rent the space was subject to them applying funds for us first," Danos explained. "So we have not received any funds; so we have not really rented it with them.”
The build-out is complete, but TriHM hasn’t been seen here in weeks.
AACOG admits it may end up re-purposing all 2,400 square feet.
“We’re supposed to find out here in December, I was told. So, this is December, and I’m waiting," Danos said.
AACOG says the space was paid for through grant money, and no taxpayer money was wasted on the office space. They're just out the cost of the paint job.