FIRST ON 3 UPDATE: Festival Latino pays bill for county parks

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- It looks like a popular Wilmington festival will happen next month after all.

New Hanover County Parks Director Jim McDaniel says this morning Lucy Vasquez, Director of Amigos Internacional, paid the more than $2,000 the group owed for use of county parks. Earlier this week we learned the county had given Vasquez a deadline of 4 p.m. Friday to pay the $1,000 she owed for using Hugh MacRae Park for last year's festival and $1,255 to use Ogden Park this year. If she missed the deadline, the county planned to turn the reservation over to another group that wants to use Ogden Park Nov. 12.

With the debt now paid, one issue still remains. Vasquez sent out news releases promoting the event yesterday, including a hot air balloon. The problem is New Hanover County's Risk Management Department has told her that it does not allow hot air balloons on county property, McDaniel said.

Vasquez has not yet returned our call for comment.

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Hey, I just did a search on the IRS site to see if this not for profit organization described as "Amigos Internacional" really exists. This organization is NOT listed...

What is happening here is that our county is allowing a commercial venture to use Ogden Park at a deep discount.

Go to www.irs.gov and click the tab "charities" and do a search in Publication 78 and try to find "Amigos Internacional"...

It ain't there JUAN and Ms. Vasquez....

You have a great scam running... Maybe WWAY will help to either A) Get you to pay your taxes on this racket you are running or B) SHUT YOU DOWN.

They are listed as "Amigos International".

I checked Guidestar under "Amigos International" and did find a charitable organization registered under that name... Interestingly, the entity name shown on the filed documents is "Amigos Internacional"...

The organization was formed in 2000, the filings (Forms 990) are professionally prepared (only last 3 years available on free Guidestar account) and have been timely filed. The organization has a large and diversified board of directors.

Well, 9000, this spelling variation in the organization's name led me to an incorrect conclusion about Amigos' nature.

The festival could get some free help I bet. Our tax dollars at work. Wonder if ICE would check IDs on the festival attendees? Can't let any felons prevent people from having a good time. Free help means paying park fees!

Come on people, their are hundreds and hundreds of $ owed by many wealthy people in New Hanover in taxes, it's public record and you pay attention to $1000 owed from a non-profit organization?
Come on be for real and focus your attention on the real issue here instead of the only Latino organization in your area that is trying to educate the community.

Unpaid taxes are a whole different ball game. Taxpayers put up their homes as collateral. If they don't pay their tax bill, the County takes their homes away. I doubt any collateral was put up for possible non-payment of the festival's bill.

No matter how you choose to look at this situation, the sponsors were cheating and trying to get something for nothing. They knew the rules up front about payment, and they choose to be dishonest.

If the purpose of the festival was to "educate the community" about Latinos, it has only taught them that Latinos are dishonest liars who try to milk the system and get out of paying a legitimate debt... and then try to cover it up with excuses by using the race card.

So...the county got the 2 grand from the previous years. Did the festival pay up front for this year? Or will we be reading the same story next year about unpaid bills?

The same rules should apply for ALL users of the park system.

From the story: "Earlier this week we learned the county had given Vasquez a deadline of 4 p.m. Friday to pay the $1,000 she owed for using Hugh MacRae Park for last year's festival and $1,255 to use Ogden Park this year."

You are correct and thanks for kindly straightening me out guesty. I misread read the article.

If it was not for Grand Olde and HIS Marines then this may not even be possible? I guess we can blame you for this, it is all because of you buttercup!

Instead of trying to blame someone who has served our country and given up his own freedom for a time so that we could enjoy ours, you should put the blame squarely where it belongs...on the Latino sponsors. It was THEIR decision to not pay the bill and try to get something for nothing. Their word is useless.

Thanks to us we will see all of you Americans at the festival!!! Common and Grand Olde maybe you guys can ride together and enjoy the culture that is here to stay!!!!!!!!

You should thank Americans, is your manager after all not an American? Did he not give you the day off to attend this festival? Hardees can be rather busy sometimes, I am sure he will be glad to have you back when it is all over. Oh and on a personal note, I am still not able to understand your broken english at the drive through. But keep trying, you will get it.

You won't be seeing this American there, Jose...uh, Juan.

Even though my viewpoints are sometimes very different from Common and Grand Olde, I would much rather go out with them, have a beer, and shoot some pool, than experience your kind of "culture".

You must have a low opinion of people if you think they’re your equals.

I will not say all but some (of you Americans) will be upset that the park will be in use and y'all can't go and do the illegal activity that always goes on at the city parks!!! Glory glory!!! You hear me grand olde buttercup? Maybe you can leave your nursing home and join us at the party!!!!! C-ya there grand olde cupcake!!!!

Now who got old Juanita riled up? I missed this story. At forty four I am not yet in a nursing home, not 2 far, but not yet. How do you know about the illegal activity in the park? Been spending the weekends there have ya? Just remember Jaunita...

We don't care if you lick windows, take the special bus or occasionally pee on yourself..
You just hang in there sunshine, you're friggin special.

Juan,

The "charity" you are supporting is not listed in IRS Publication 78 as a qualifying organization, nor is it to be found on the Guidestar database...

Are you and Ms. Vasquez running a commercial racket?????

So, Juan... I am a white American 55 year old male who likes to visit Ogden Park. I like to barbecue there, walk my dog there and appreciate what AMERICAN and NEW HANOVER COUNTY taxpayers spend to keep this acrage up for my and my family's enjoyment...

Juan, your obnoxious posts have accomplished something I'd never have imagined; you made me consider and understand how "Grand Old Party" and "Commonsense" think... YOU have turned me to be sympathetic to them.

I have no problem with Mexican culture. The problem lies with the gutter culture that the likes of you have brought to my country.

Go home, Juan. American citizens need the jobs that you are usurping. Mexico is a great place and you should be benefitting from it and enjoying the fruits of your efforts!

Thanks for your helping to get the community interested. This was the largest and most well attended festival yet! We appreciate all people like you did and said to peak the public's interest.

When you post comments like this, you aren't helping your cause. You make your whole race look bad.

YOU WON'T SEE THIS OLD GEEZER THERE HONEYBUN. PAY YOUR BILLS LIKE I DO. WHEN THEY ARE DUE.

This festival isn't going to "educate" anyone about Latinos, except that they are as dishonest as the day is long.

By not paying their bill for over a year, they have proven themselves to be untrustworthly and dishonest. They should have been made to pay interest.

20, I wouldn't go as far as to say all Latinos are untrustworthy. I will say without reservation that there is a problem with the woman running this show and her charity "Amigos Internacional" though.

This "charity" is not listed by the IRS as a qualified organization. It is not found on Guidestar, nor is it found to be registered in the State of NC.

This is a racket!

I was speaking about the sponsors of the festival, but didn't make that point clear. To clarify, the sponsors are giving people the impression that Latinos are untrustworthy by not paying their bill and not keeping their word.

Thanks for helping me to clarify my statement.

What was the original amount of the bill? Why was it allowed to languish so long? Was interest charged, or is the sad fact that since the bill was SUPPOSED to be paid in advance, there is no provision in the contract for paying interest on a past due amount.

What action is being taken by the county against the civil servant who failed in his duties by not collecting the fee before the event?

Is ANYBODY held responsible or accountable in this county? Ever?

I hope the festival will have many immigration officials in attendance, too. Would be a great opportunity.

with that sentiment.

If Bev was thinking, she'd add some state law enforcement volunteers to help inspect identifications & round up those who are not here legally. That would certainly help with the state budget.

target rich environment for I.C.E.

Is Everybody ready?!?

All together Now!

This IS the way to fight back! Will you join in?

Notify ICE and tell them that (Juan) wants ICE to be present at the Festival Latino, at New Hanover County Ogden Park and to bring lots of armed vehicles to check ID's, visas.

Homeland Security should be notified to check terrorist check lists and drug kingpin check lists. They are here living amongst us and we are sooo Politically Correct, that we get mad at a jerk who eggs us Americans on, but not at the drug smugglers who transporting it into America disquised as a HARD WORKING blue collar Latina.

Let's wise up!!!

Should make FOX News!

Headlines on Hannity:

Wilmington Residents TIRED of JOB SHARING with Illegals Fight BACK!

Wilmington Residents did not like Lucy Vasquez getting a FREE RIDE on PARK FEES for Latino Festival because EVERYONE ELSE had to pay the COUNTY on TIME, IN FULL, NO EXTENSIONS.

AMERICA, LAND THAT WE LOVE!!! Let's keep it for those who are law-abiding>

I don't take my comment back at all! Only reason she paid the bills is due to the local attention it's gotten from being in the news! Also if the non-profit organization was well organized & managed it should not have happened! Maybe they need to look into someone else taking care of the books and running the "non-profit" program.

Also had they advertised for the Hot Air Balloon, the manager should have read the rules and regulations of the state parks.

As for the comment posted earlier, no I will not and I don't think anyone should take their comments back that were made! Truth hurts and you know they only paid because it was on TV and the negative feed back they got. So now they are trying to make themselves look good by paying. Well next pay you bills on time. Also make this be a learning lesson to the park to not let any organization have an event without paying the full amount owed! So long run lesson learned for both parties!