menu bar

Valley of Lakes RICO Class Action against PNCBANK, et al.
ripped edge: exhibits

April 21,1993

Mr. James M. Sysko
Office of Attorney General
Bureau of Consumer Protection
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
Scranton RegionaL Office
214 Samter8 Building
101 Penn Aveizue
Scranton PA 15503-2025

Re: Frank Cedrone C.B.G. Limited
    File No. E93-0652

Dear Mr. Sysko:

In response to Mr. Cedrone's letter dated April 6, 1993, it is apparent
to him most everything I've stated is false.    

I will go into further detail as to my position and the events that
led up to my current situation in the Valley of Lakes.

I had been looking for at least a year to purchase a summer home in     
Pennsylvania. I had been to numerous real estates, and developments
from the Delaware Water Gap to Hazleton. John LaForte a real estate
agent from Cambas Realty had shown me properties and developments
in and around the area. I didn't see anything I liked, and as we
were leaving each other for the day, John had mentioned the Valley
of Lakes in Hazleton. He suggested we go look, and see if we liked      
the place.

We liked what we saw, and was taken on a tour by C.B.G. sales personnel.

When we went back to C.B.G.'s offices and talked prices, we thought 
the prices were too high.  We were asked how we found out about the 
place and explained that John LaForte refered us.  We were told by the
sales personnel that if we purchased land from someone other than the 
developer, we would not be entitled to a 50% discount on the skiing 
in the Valley of Lakes.

We contacted John and told him to look for some properties, for sale 
by private owners.  He found a few listings, and we purchased the 
property we are living on now. We held the property for about a year,
coming up on the weekends to use the lake and the pool.  After that year 
we decided to build.

We spoke to a few builders, Harris Homes, McCarthy Builders, and 
Maso Bldrs.  We explained where we wanted to build, in the Valley of 
Lakes.  We picked out a few models, and the builders would get back 
to us with a price after they had contacted C.B.G. and find out what 
the procedure for building homes in the Valley were.  We recieved the 
same response from all the builders.  They did not want to get involved 
in home construction in the Valley of Lakes, because they would have 
to raise the price of their homes an additional 8%.  An 8% commision 
paid to C.B.G. Limited.

It wasn't that they couldn't meet C.B.G. so called strict compliances 
with building and safety codes as Mr. Cedrone would have you believe 


In Mr. Cedrones he makes reference to the B.O.C.A. code, up to a few 
months ago, Mr. Cedrone didn't know what the letters stood for, and 
neither does the builder who built my house. I have an electric wall 
heater on the inside wall of my master bedroom, and when I questioned 
why was it there, wasn't it supposed to be on an outside wall, I was 
told it was there according to B.O.C.A. code.  The term B.O.C.A. was 
used when it was convenient for C.B.G. or the builder.

John LaForte did not reccomend my builder.  I had a certain budget I 
had to work with, and I was told that the builder I used could do it 
for the price I had in mind.  I was considering another "Preffered 
Builder" in mind also, but I was told by C.B.G. sales personnel that 
this builder was much more expensive.  I later met this builder 
socially and he asked why I didn't let him build my house.  I told him 
what the C.B.G. sales personnel had told me, that he was much more 
expensive.  This builder stated to me that he was never asked to price 
out the house.  He further stated he could have met the price I paid 
and I would have received better quality materials.  Why wasn't he 
given the opportunity to price out my house?

The first use of preffered builders case Mr. Cedrone refers to is proof 
positive of my statement..The property owner mentioned refused to 
pay the 8% commision to build his home.  The builder did not promptly
go bankrupt, but was held up on the construction due to being held 
up on approval of permits, architectural design, and B.O.C.A. code 
descrepencies.  During the construction there was vandalism, and it 
wasn't until the property owner retained a lawyer that his house was 
completed.  The other two cases I have no knowledge of.

C.B.G. does add an additional 8% to every home in here, and I have it 
in writing as commision on the builders stationery.
The builders have an option, add the 8% commision or you don't build.

Only one sales person helped me when I needed it.  I have been having 
water problems in my basement, and I couldn't get the builder to do 
anything about it.  This sales person made sure the builder showed up 
at the house made sure he dug up the side of my house where they found 
water in the cement block.  They added more stone to that side of the 
house, which did not solve the problem.  Sometime later the Builder 
installed a sump pump, and to this day, I still get water in the 
basement when it rains.  This is a "Preffered Builder", and the extent 
of the sales management teams help.

I would gladly have made selections from the availible catalogues,
if there were any.  Every aspect of the building of my home, from doors 
to appliances to brick colors, tile, wood stoves had to be picked ouy
at the suppliers.  It usually is the sale personnel together with the 
builder who assists the homeowner in this procedure.  If thats the way 
it is tell me, but don't charge me for it and then tell me what am I 
complaining about.

Mr. Cedrone seems to have overlooked the complaint I had about the 
$1,000 dollar dumpster fee.  Again I was charged for something I didn't 
receive.  This was mandatory according to C.B.G. covenants and restrictions, 
no home shall be constructed unless there is an on site dumpster 
during all phases of construction.  There was never a dumpster at any 
time during construction of my home at my home.  As I've stated before 
if you check wtth the D.E.R., they will confirm they found dumpsites 
with building materials in them.


Property values are down cosiderably, not up, people can't sell them 
for what they paid for them.  Property taxes are up and there's no 
relief in sight.

As I write, I remember more details, like the the computer we had 
to purchase (mandatory) because it was going to be hooked up to a 
central computer, to make reservations, banking, etc: This cost me 
and every homeowner in here $1400.00.  When Mr. Cedrone reads this, 
his statement will be "that was a proposal not a promise." 
Mr. Cedrone sold this place with these incentives, and when they 
didn't work out for whatever reason i.e.: The economy, Desert Storm, 
Mr. Cedrons falls back on "it was a proposal not a promise."

At this time I want to make it perfectly clear, that I don't have any 
personal dislikes for Mr. Cedrcne, just for his business practices.

Although I have been branded as a "troublemaker" by Mr. Cedrone 
writing letters is not my idea of a good time.  I just can't believe 
what's been going on.

To answer Mr. Cedrone's question why wait three years to complain.
I bad always hoped to see the light at the end of the tunnel, maybe
Mr. Cedrone would do what he said he would, and make this Pennsylvania's
Premier Community.

Now that the chapter eleven bankruptcy is upon the Valley,it really 
appears to be over.  I believe that Mr. Cedrone should be held 
accountable to every property owner and homeowner.

Mr. Sysko I also have a complaint into the P.U.C. and the consumer 
advocates offices because of no water service and constant low water 
pressure.  A total of sixteen persons signed the complaint.  To date 
no decisions have been made, except that if there is any funding 
found that a complete evaluation of the water system will be done. 
What happened to the monies collected from the sewer and water fees? 
Why wasn't the money used to correct problems, and do preventive 

In closing, I have a couple of questions!

How can a bank loan so much money to a corporation or individual; 
without knowing if this person or corporation is remaining current 
outstanding bills?

How can a bank give a mortgage to homeowners when their property has
no road and in some cases are not hooked up to a sewer system but 
a make shift holding tank, that overflows on occasion?

How could C.B.G. incur so much debt?  There are 50 Fifty pages of 
unsecured creditors.

There is an unsecured creditors committee, the people on the committee 
are the people who are owed the most.  Why hasn't this committee met 
to decide anything?

How come the third lake didn't go in?  This would have made my property 
worth more, and given the people who pay taxes for lakefront property 
a lakefront.



Why wasn't the maintenance money we paid for last year used to open
the swimming pool (the only amenity) we have?  It was open during the
last bankruptcy the Valley of Lakes went through. 
And I don't believe it was because a handful of individuals did not
pay their maintenance fees!                                               

I hope this letter allows you to further understand my concerns.

Why has no legal action been taken?  Doesn't this warrant some sort 
of investigation?

                                        Thank you; 
                                        George Morris             

Valley of Lakes RICO Class Action against PNCBANK, et al.

Home | Court Decisions | News Articles | RICO Complaint | Exhibits