(Victorville)—The expert quoted in the Sunday business story ran by The Los Angeles Times badmouthing Victorville denied in a phone interview ever making negative comments to the reporter responsible for this story, High Desert Daily has learned exclusively.
In an interview, housing economist Gerld -Ulf Krueger of HousingEcon.com said he did not know he was going to be quoted in The Times story until reached by High Desert Daily making him aware of the comments attributed to him. “I was flabbergasted,” he said. “The last time I spoke to that reporter was on July 20th and I do not ever recall saying this to the reporter.”
Ulf reffered to the quote attributed to him in which he states that “Nobody wants to go to Victorville.”
The economist also said that he has sent an e-mail to Los Angeles Times reporter Alana Semuels in which he disputes ever making a negative statement directed to Victorville.
Ulf admits making a comment about Victorville, among other areas, being a victim of the housing distress overhang. “But I never made the comment that nobody wants to come to Victorville.”
To back his claim Ulf contacted local leaders in an e-mail with the following statement.
“I just e-mailed The LA Times. The LA Times writer contacted me a few months ago (in July, but not recently). I don’t recall having said anything derogatory about Victorville. I am sorry I got quoted like this, especially since I recently gave a speech about the Inland Empire at the UCLA-CMC Inland Empire Forecast Conference, which some people thought was actually kind of optimistic.”
LA Times Business Editor John Corrigan said he spoke to the reporter and “We stand behind the story, the story is accurate.”Corrigan did not want to make any other comments.
After learning about the new developments of Tuesday, Victorville Mayor Ryan McEachron said he expects The LA Times to retract the comments made about Victorville in the Sunday story. “If the economist never made that statement, then I expect The LA Times to print a retraction, nothing less.”
The Mayor also said Victorville has reached out to the reporter and has invited her to come up to the area to see for herself the development of the city and area. “The potential loss of jobs we can experience with such an article is huge. There are big repercussions that can affect us I am not happy at all with this,” McEachron added.
Stay tuned to High Desert Daily for more information in this developing story.