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Today a body was pulled out of a house on 7 Woodland Street in Worcester:
This building used to be owned by a shady Worcester non-profit known as the Henry Willis Center, which had been wasting and stealing over $11 million a year from the taxpayers before the state ended that cash cow. It was purchased by SMOC for $2.2 million shortly thereafter, and this is where our story begins.
In early 2016 we published this blog about the Southern Middlesex Opportunity Council (SMOC), an organization that exists to help people in peril. At least that’s what they say they do. In reality they are a multimillion dollar, taxpayer funded organization that does great damage to the community they claim to be helping out.
SMOC is one of the largest non-profits in the state. In fiscal year ending June 30, 2015 they took in over $91 million, $67 million of which came from taxpayer funded grants, as well as over $4 million in private contributions. They paid their staff salaries of over $26 million. The rest went to what it was actually intended to go towards:
Grants come in from all sorts of allegedly underfunded state agencies, including DCF, DTA, Medicare, Medicaid, HUD, the VA, and pretty much every available form of bureaucracy that exists. They also get donations from banks, mid-size and large businesses, unions, and religious institutions.
Their executive director James Cuddy made over $300,000 that year.
The Metrowest Daily News did a story about his compensation in 2010:
Jim Cuddy, who as the executive director of the South Middlesex Opportunity Council is about as polarizing a figure in town as one will find, will, like last year, make a salary of $260,000 in 2010. Cuddy will also earn benefit contributions of $22,655. That figure includes his health, dental, and life insurance policies, his retirement contribution, and a car allowance, SMOC spokeswoman Jane Lane said on Thursday.
Cuddy’s salary was also $260,000 in fiscal 2009, according to SMOC board meeting minutes obtained by the Daily News. While Cuddy does not have a written contract, Lane said the SMOC board has not taken any vote to change that amount for the current fiscal year. Cuddy referred all comment about his salary and compensation to Lane. SMOC’s most recent filing from with the state’s Attorney General’s Office is from fiscal 2008 and indicates Cuddy made $296,244 that year. He was owed retroactive pay that year, said Lane, explaining why he made more that year compared to his current salary.
Yea he’s been raking in the taxpayer cash for years now. Why is any public servant making a salary like this? Is $150,000 a year not enough to live on? If you’re working for a non-profit that helps people in peril, shouldn’t your motivations be virtuous instead of monetary?
So what do they spend that $91 million on besides Jimmy’s $300K salary? Well, here’s a list of services they claim to provide on their website. A lot of the stuff on there looks good on paper. It’s like a liberal’s wet dream of talking points, which is probably why it’s so easy for them to get grants and donations from wealthy business owners. After all, they have to donate to someone, and these all look as good as anything on paper:
State Senator Jamie Eldridge is heavily involved with SMOC:
Because SMOC is right up his alley. It pretends to care about poor people, just like him. He lives in Acton, and of course there are no SMOC houses there. So as usual, he’s all about taking your taxpayer money, and throwing junkies into your town, just not his. And since the State Legislature is largely responsible for directing grants to organizations like SMOC, he makes sure the gravy train keeps flowing.
And I’m sure there’s some good work that SMOC does. But the fact of the matter is it’s a bloated bureaucracy that pays out exorbitant six figure salaries to people who only work 35 hours a week. This is from their 2011 tax filings:
Keep in mind, this is 2011 dollars. But as you can see, there are six people right there only working 35 hours a week, and the lowest salary in the bunch is over $120,000. Most of this is paid for by the taxpayers.
They also throw money at their family members too with hookup part time gigs:
James Cyrus Cuddy is from Wellesley, one of the wealthiest towns in Massachusetts.
He’s obviously a big fan of Dad’s taxpayer funded nepotism.
Cyrus isn’t the only one making out though. SMOC spends more taxpayer money when they contract window companies, law offices, insulation companies, and construction companies.
No word on how they determine which companies they contract with, or if they shop around for the lowest price. Which they should since it’s taxpayer money.
According to their most recent tax filing they took in $73 million in revenue a year. As usual, Jim Cuddy took his cut, as did 6 others making six figure salaries:
Charles Gagnon works a hefty 35 hours a week and collects a salary over over $185,000 a year. Part of what he does is find old Victorian homes in dumpy communities, works with the local government, and gets the government grants to convert them into homes for “recovering” drug addicts. They don’t open these in Holden or Shrewsbury though. They open them in shitholes like Worcester and Spencer. Here’s Charlie Gagnon showing off a new house SMOC bought and renovated in Spencer to State Rep Peter Durant during Charlie’s 35 hour work week:
Hey there Charlie, wanna share a twin bed? pic.twitter.com/dGX9YNpcTf
— Party Waren Kebber (@WebbDawgTG) May 23, 2018
Because apparently people are less likely to notice a house full of unsupervised junkies in Spencer. Kind of blends right in. But I’m sure the taxpayers of Spencer are thrilled about what this is doing to their already depleting property values.
Back in 2016 we toured one of these SMOC house on Dayton Street in Worcester with a really cool turtle rider who has battled substance abuse for years, but is clean now and living a healthy and productive life. Originally from New Bedford, he was a black belt in karate before he became addicted to drugs. He spent time on the streets before finally deciding that it was time to get clean. He has been drug free for ten years now.
It looks nice on the outside….
And they allegedly have rules that are enforced in order to live in the house…
Be peaceful and don’t interfere with anyone else’s right to peace. Keep the house clean including common areas. No drugs or other illegal activities. Stuff like that. But none of these rules were actually enforced:
The problem of course is that SMOC just randomly throws addicts into these rooming homes without any sort of supervision, or requirements to go to rehab. No prior counseling, drug and alcohol treatment, or mental health evaluations. Nothing. They literally just throw junkies into every room possible and then never deal with them again. Then they give themselves a pat on the back for fixing homelessness. Social Justice Warrior merit badges for everyone! What could possibly go wrong?
SMOC makes money from the state off of every person they assign. Empty rooms are bad for business. But what they end up doing is putting the most vulnerable people in the same house together so they can continue smoking crack and shooting up heroin without any fear or consequences. Oh yea, and the heat is free, so it’s a lot better than getting high on the streets!!
According to our turtle riding friend, everyone in the house does drugs and there’s no supervision whatsoever. One tenant smears feces all over his door and the hallway:
There was a woman living in one of the rooms who had a crackhead boyfriend, who was specifically banned from the house. Yet the two of them regularly got high in her room and he has been living there for six months.
Our turtle rider friend has called the Board of Health several times, and whenever he did SMOC went into coverup mode, trying to clean up the disgusting, vermin infested rooms people smoke crack and exchange love juices in:
Oh, and Jim Cuddy allows these recovering addicts to drink alcohol, as long as it’s in their rooms:
James T. Cuddy, SMOC executive director, said in May that residents of the Duxbury Road lodging (other SMOC house) house would be free to drink alcohol in their rooms.
Not like he checks up on any of them anyway. They’re just paychecks to him.
The turtle rider was the only person in the house who was employed. When we visited at 11 AM on a Friday there were tenants coming and going, heading down to Main South to look for drugs. No one was looking for a job. Yet this is the very thing SMOC says they do for addicts in their tax filings:
“Advocacy program – provide individuals with access to resources that enable them to become financially self-sufficient and economically independent.”
This is just a flat out lie. No one in these homes is provided with resources to become self-sufficient. They literally just fill rooms up with junkies, collect grant checks from the government, and then let them do their thing. And as you can see in Woodland Street today, they die there.
Why would they open up a SMOC house on Woodland Street? It’s in the heart of Main South. They couldn’t possibly make it any easier for these vulnerable, drug addicted junkboxes to have access to drugs.
Another house SMOC ran in Worceter was on Queen Street. The same place a dead body was remained in one of their boarding rooms for two weeks before anyone noticed it in 2015.
Police respond to these SMOC houses at alarming rates. Here’s the first of many pages of police logs our turtle rider provided us with:
Neighbors from the Woodland Street house tell us that the cops and ambulances are there all the time. But Jim Cuddy doesn’t care as he collects his checks. These aren’t really people to him. They’re paychecks. But he pretends to care about them so empty suit politicians like Jamie Eldridge keep throwing money at him as his non-profit lies about their reason for existing on tax returns.