The most expensive contract in the history of Mazatlan by direct award is for 400.8 million pesos to Azteca Lighting.
The municipal government of Mazatlán, Luis Guillermo Chemist Benítez Torres, SUPERO! to all previous administrations in incapacity, inefficiency, opacity and corruption.
In 2015, PAN member Carlos E Felton González presented the debt plan to the council to replace 30 thousand sodium vapor lamps with LED lamps with a credit of 353 million 087 thousand 512.85 pesos -233 million pesos more than the real price!-, at a unit cost of 16,000 pesos each when the estimated market price was 3,400 pesos – also providing 18 percent of the federal participations of the municipality for 10 years as a guarantee for the indebtedness -, the Mazatlecos did not hesitate to qualify the operation as the machination of the biggest fraud in the history of this port.
But incredibly, only 7 years later, Benítez Torres, the current mayor who presumes his friendship with López Obrador, would far exceed the PANista with a direct award contract of 400 million 864 thousand 204.47 pesos to the local company Azteca Lighting SA de CVlocal businessman Alonso Puerto to replace only 2,139 lamps with an exorbitant cost per lamp of $187,407.29 pesos, without considering additional installation costs, when specialist companies such as Leotek of Algona, Iowa, quote them at $230 per unit, about $4 thousand 666.70 pesos at the current exchange rate.
In both operations, that of Felton and Benítez, the sinister presence of Loar Susek López Tirado appears, pointed out on more than one occasion as allegedly responsible for corruption.
The Mazatlan 4T surpassed all previous administrations in incapacity, inefficiency, opacity and corruption.
Alonso Puerto, originally from the Isla de la Piedra, has obviously been a highly favored supplier by the current municipal administration, which has awarded him million-dollar contracts by direct award, under the questionable argument of having the exclusive design patent for LED lamps with UFO technology ( Unidentified Flying Object).
On March 2, 2020, Puerto sent a statement to display the “License Agreement for the Use of Registered Trademarks” that it granted on January 2, 2020, to AZTECA LIGHTING, SA DE CV, in its capacity as “Licensee” of the following brands:
- Trademarks registered before the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property number 2026444, 1921398, 2026445, 2005517 that protect various electrical products; lighting services, marketing of products related to lighting and public lighting; Installation, repair, maintenance of lighting and lighting systems, valid until March 15, 2028.
The municipal government fraudulently supported the direct award in the display of these registered trademarks and partial industrial design patent number 55822, which is about to expire on November 29, 2022, so the contracting process was streamlined to avoid setbacks.
According to the minutes of the Acquisitions Committee, 2,139 sodium lamps will be replaced by LED lamps in some neighborhoods of the port, which rules out that they will be the 30,000 lamps that Felton intended to replace in 2015 and whose overprice was publicly denounced by the then councilors Esperanza Kasuga Osaka and Humberto Becerra Batista.
According to the documents obtained by the Mazatlán Citizen Comptroller through Transparency, the municipal government will make two equal payments in April and September 2022 of $60 million 129 thousand 630.67 pesos. The remaining $280 million 604 thousand 943.12 pesos will be paid as follows: first payment: $13 million 394 thousand 791.00 pesos without a specific date, but conditional on the delivery of 800 lamps; second payment: $133 million 605 thousand 076.05 pesos in the month of April 023, conditional on the delivery of another 800 lamps; and the third payment of $133 million 605 thousand 076.05 pesos in the month of April 2024, conditional on the delivery of 539 lamps.
On Tuesday, June 26, 2020, the then Solicitor Elsa Bojórquez Mascareño denounced the approval -with her vote against and also from the councilor of the PT Rodolfo Cardona- of the Committee of Acquisitions, Leases and Services of the municipal government to acquire “118 led lights that will be installed in the remodeled Rafael Buelna avenue with a total investment of 21 million 900 thousand pesos”, at a rate of 185 thousand 593 pesos each, according to act 117/2020 held by P23.
At the end of August 2020, the Superior Audit Office of the State of Sinaloa began an investigation into the acquisition of these 118 lights. To date they have not published the results of the audit, much less applied sanctions.
The direct award of the contract went to the local company Azteca Lighting SA de CV ., to install “118 super luminaires for exteriors, 20 years warranty, 3000K; 118 “hot dip galvanized, 10 meter” poles; “118 base and vertical register with IP67 junction box for fuses, cables and electronics”; and “236 class CC in-line fuse holders for public lighting”.
Comparative research from the P23 portal reveals that with this budget of 21.9 million pesos, 18,250 wired lamps could be purchased that cost between 1,044 and 1,300 pesos each, or acquire 4,294 solar lamps, the most expensive on the market, at 5,100 pesos each. /or.
At the request of the P23 portal, the company Corporativo Constructor Mexiquense SA DE CV -which participated in the rigged Felton tender-, quoted luminaires with the same technical specifications at 20 thousand pesos each, which includes a 12m circular conical pole, hot-dip galvanized , Philips brand Led luminaire of 400 watts, 8,000 lumens and installation and control accessories: $20,000.00 pesos per unit, almost 10 times less than the direct award of Azteca Lighting. P23 asked businessman Alonso Puerto for an explanation about the enormous difference between his proposal and similar world-class products, such as Philips, but he apologized for health reasons.
The story that comes back
In 2015, Felton González’s project to replace 30,000 luminaires amounted to 16,000 pesos per lamp, which was outrageous because other prices offered them at 200 dollars each (at an exchange rate of 17 pesos per dollar). That is, the real unit cost was 3,400 pesos (21.25 percent of the price defended by the then municipal president).
Comparing the quote of the government of the Chemist Benítez with that of Felton González -which inflated the budget by 233 million pesos, each lamp costs the extraordinary amount of 185 thousand 593 pesos, 11.5 times more expensive than the PAN project -16 thousand pesos- and 54 times more expensive than the real market price: 3,400 pesos. So far there is no explanation from the provider or the municipal authority.
7 years ago, with the complicity of the majority of the aldermen -as is the case today-, PAN President Carlos Eduardo Felton González pushed to the limit of folly.
the project to replace 30,000 sodium vapor lamps with LED (Light Emitting Diode) lights at a cost 3 times higher than the supplier’s price.
In that Cabildo session of June 16, 2015, the councilors approved by majority and in a hurry (fast track) the 10-year public debt for 353 million 087 thousand 512 pesos with 85 cents to replace 30 thousand sodium vapor lamps of the public lighting by LED lights, going beyond the guidelines of the National Project for Energy Efficiency in Municipal Public Lighting and the National Commission for the Efficient Use of Energy (CONUEE). But it was not a smooth session, since the mayor had to resort to Public Security and Civil Protection to prevent the entry of dozens of citizens who opposed the fraud and settlers who demanded public services such as water and drainage.
According to the Municipal Guide for Converting to LED Street Lighting, published on the website www.leotek.com, the Algona, Iowa-based company Leotek then established a unit cost per lamp -exactly the same as the one described in the public tender- of 230 dollars per unit (3 thousand 673 pesos at the Bank of Mexico exchange rate of July 21, 2015) and not 11 thousand 762 of the proposal of the winner Specialized Equipment and Products SA DE CV, substantially reducing the economic proposal to 120 million pesos (including installation cost) and not the 353.1 million pesos that President Felton González could never explain, nor did he present the financial cost for 10 years of indebtedness.
Same modus operandi
Without being considered in the Municipal Development Plan, the Council’s Finance Commission, presided over by the then PAN councilor Loar Susek López Tirado – now ominously embedded in the Benítez Torres government – presented a first opinion to the plenary on June 1 from 2015which was later modified by two others to correct deficiencies of the previous ones and approve the contract to the company Servicios y Equipos Especializados SA DE CV, with headquarters in Mexico City, in which full authorization is granted to the municipal government of Mazatlán to contract the replacement of 30,000 lamps, of the 31,070 total that exist in the rural and urban areas of the municipality, despite the fact that “75 percent work perfectly, 15 percent have some deficiencies and only 10 percent are in poor condition or do not work”, according to a study contracted by the municipal government itself in April before the company Servicios y Proyectos Eléctrico Baja S. de RL, from Tijuana, Baja California.
According to the document published on July 6, 2015, the LED lights “will generate savings of up to 60 percent in electricity consumption for annual public lighting, which in 2014 was 78,958,000 pesos. That is to say, the cheerful projection considered a saving of 47 million 375 thousand pesos per year” which however “is not a guarantee of payment because it cannot be conditioned to future administrations”.
233 million to distribute
The councilors gave the president, secretary, treasurer and solicitor trustee a wide berth to enter into a contract for up to 353 million 087 thousand 512.85 pesos, which did not include interest, expenses, fees and commissions of the financial lease for up to 10 years “and whose amortization It will be in monthly payments. Likewise, they authorized that “18 percent of their present and future participations in branch 28 that correspond to the Municipality in federal income be assigned as a fiduciary guarantee.” They pawned the municipality!
The then local deputy for the PRD Imelda Castro, today a senator of the republic for Morena, went up to the podium to discover the machination of fraud by intentionally keeping the popular neighborhoods in the dark:
“(…) I invite you, I challenge you, all those who are listening to us, to investigate so far this triennium, of this government, how many lamps have been placed in the communities and they will find that none; the communities of that municipality are practically in the dark because the president since he arrived brought the LED lamp project. And in Congress we are not here to fulfill whims or endorse private businesses for the municipalities (…)”.
It transpired among deputies of the time that Felton González offered 1 million pesos to each deputy for their vote. He could do it, because if he distributed 40 million he still had about 180 million more left over. His proposal was frozen.
The question arises in 2022: why did the municipal government not take advantage of the benefits of the Collaboration Agreement for the execution of the National Energy Efficiency Project for Municipal Public Lighting? ( https://www.gob.mx/conuee/acciones-y-programas/estados-y-municipios-proyecto-nacional-de-estitución-energetica-en-alumbrado-publico-municipal ) and directly awarded a contract for more of 400 million pesos to the Azteca Lighting company, which curiously was an advisor to the councilors who opposed the business of PAN member Carlos Felton and today is a large company suspiciously benefited by the municipal administration of the 4T.