FRESNO, CA –The aftermath continues for Housing Authority board commissioner, Terra Brusseau, who is getting obliterated by her own words, so it seems, every time she makes a statement: Brusseau, who serves on the 14-member Fresno Housing Authority board, made discriminatory remarks, during a March 26 board meeting during the discussion of a 60-unit housing project to be located at Willow and Alluvial avenues in Clovis, CA.
Her comments landed her in the April 16, 2019 article of The Fresno Bee, Housing commissioner asked to resign after Clovis diversity comments seen as “racist.”
Brusseau, who labeled her comments as “concerns,” not understanding their discriminatory nature, upset many people of color throughout Fresno County, who have asked her to resign from her appointed commissioner seat.
Community leaders from the black pastoral community met with Brusseau about the concerns, asking her to step down.
However, the saga continues: On Tuesday night, April 23, at the Fresno Housing Authority Board Meeting, Brusseau boldly made a statement to the public that she met with the community leaders and had their full support to continue serving on the Housing Authority Board of Commissioners; of course, this couldn’t be furthest from the truth, according to ONME News’ investigative research, (see Fresno Bee video of April 23 statement here.)
Westside Church of God Pastor Paul Binion who was one of those leader who met with Brusseau, was disturbed to hear her blatant false remarks and recounts a different story with his colleagues who were also there with him: Pastor DJ Criner and Pastor B.T. Lewis.
“There were tears from her [Ms. Brusseau], and we prayed with her and for her, but still, we asked her politely to resign,” explained Pastor Binion.
Pastor Binion and colleagues were so taken back by the false remarks, that they met with Mayor Lee Brand Wednesday morning about the mayoral appointed seat—Mayor Brand was not willing to ask her to resign.
“Anyone who is in that seat is supposed to represent all people; Ms. Brusseau clearly cannot represent all people, said Binion. “We asked Mayor Brand to ask her to step down from the Fresno Housing Authority Board. He doesn’t see this issue the same way as we do.”
"She blatantly lied," said Pastor DJ Criner, "we did not support her continuing as a board commissioner on the Housing Authority Board. We asked her to resign face to face."
The irony of Brusseau’s lately-made racist comments
What’s ironic about Brusseau’s comments made during the March 26 Fresno Housing Authority board meeting where she opposed the new development in Clovis because of her “concerns” about the residents and the location, is that the commissioners had many prior discussions about this Clovis project at previous board meetings, according to the previous minutes in 2018 and the beginning minutes from 2019 (see images below in slide show.) Mayor Lee Brand's appointment of Brusseau was approved by the City Council April 19, 2018; she therefore had other opportunities to oppose the development many months before the March 26 board meeting.
Not only does Brusseau not live in Clovis, CA, but Clovis Mayor Drew Bessinger made it clear that her comments do not reflect Clovis residents’ sentiments.
“Commissioner Brusseau does not live in Clovis, does not operate a business in Clovis, and her comments do not reflect our community values of diversity and inclusivity,” said Mayor Bessinger in a public statement.
“The City of Clovis does not oppose this project and believes that our community is strongest when there is a diverse choice of housing types and pricing-levels spread throughout all parts (of) the city. We welcome all those who wish to call Clovis home, to take advantage of our schools, community safety and all things which come with The Clovis Way of Life,” said Bessinger.
The public statement also includes comments regarding representation at the Fresno Housing Authority.
“The City of Clovis has no representation on the Fresno Housing Council,” said the statement. “Any comments made by anyone in that group do not represent the position of the City of Clovis, its Council or its residents.”
The statements also welcomed affordable developments in Clovis, stating that they have numerous parcels zoned to allow high-density affordable housing without the need for Council action.
“These parcels, which include the project that was addressed by Commissioner Brusseau, are zoned in a manner that allows high-density, affordable housing byright, meaning that no Council action is necessary to construct the project, only administrative actions such as issuing building permits.”
Brusseau’s assisted beginnings
Brusseau, 44, a mother of three, and an entrepreneur, started her business, Central Valley Group, sometime in 2013; her fictitious business name was filed March 16, 2013 using her home address as a starting point.
Although only in business six years, Brusseau purports an impressive resume with over 20 years’ experience in event planning, fundraising, and other campaign management roles, according to her company resume Fresno Housing Authority application submission. However, her LinkedIn profile reveals her only work experience was for Congressman David Valadao from September 2011 to November 2012 as a political consultant.
Luckily Brusseau has been privileged to get help from a few powerful friends; her entrance into the political business through former US House of Representatives Congressman David Valadao’s campaign proved to be fruitful to establish her company, Central Valley Group. And with the help of current Mayor Lee Brand, Brusseau will most likely be a part of Mayor Brand’s 2020 re-election campaign. In fact, Brusseau’s ties are so close to Mayor Brand, she even uses Fresno City Hall as her business address, according to her website, (see pictures below). These are possibly more reasons Mayor Brand is not willing to enforce her resignation.
How Brusseau’s misconduct could hurt the local Republican Party
Very much into politics herself according to her Twitter account, Brusseau is not only passionate about it, but has also serviced high profile conservatives from the Valley, such as Congressman Valadao and Mayor Brand, according to her company website. Others include: Lisa Smittcamp, Nathan Magsig and Buddy Mendes. She is also affiliated with the conservative group, The Lincoln Club of Fresno County.
It is possible that people will relate Brusseau’s blatant lies in the recount of events to those of President Donald Trump; ironically she posted a photo on her Facebook of her dining with President Trump, very pleased about the encounter. This of course poses a threat to the Republican Party who has been dodging such discriminatory behavior from members of its party, including the uncontrollable Twitter rhetoric from President Trump.