Right Message, Wrong Messenger

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The Keynoter/Reporter has an editorial up about the dangers faced by journalists these days.  Greg “the body slammer” Gianforte immediately springs to mind.  The editorial isn’t wrong, but are the folks at the Keynoter/Reporter really the right ones to deliver this message?

Let’s face it, the meek, timid bunnies at the Keynoter are as safe in their cozy, little dens as they can possibly be.  They might take a swipe at low-hanging fruit or pile on somebody who’s already been targeted, but they will never risk ruffling feathers by asking tough questions when it really counts.  I left a comment pretty much saying that.

Funny enough – it looks like they’re up for an award for prettiest website or something.  Nothing wrong with “pretty”, but informative would be great.  Just sayin’.

Unfortunately, the Keynoter/Reporter isn’t even the worst news outlet in the Keys.  That “honor” would go to the Citizen, a publication which passes on lies to the public even after being called on it.  Here’s an item about one of their more blatant deceptions.  (Be warned – you have to scroll past my Trump rant.)  The Citizen is ballsy at least – but not in a good way.

Here’s a really good piece on the topic of sickly Keys media.  It’s at the Blue Paper, of course, the only reliable news outlet in the Keys.

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FKAA Follies – All Talk, No Action

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Why bother with the play acting?

The Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority (FKAA) responded to my public records request.  Their follow-up on the Dean residency issue was underwhelming to say the least.  I’m sure this surprises absolutely no one.  Basically, the FKAA sent the letter and investigative report to the governor…and that’s it.

 

The governor didn’t respond.  Unsurprising.  The letter never asked him to.  So rather than following up or handling the situation themselves, like you might expect from grown adults, the FKAA weakly fell back on an email from Cheri Smith of the Key West Canvassing Board to buttress their self-serving decision to do nothing.  Here is a link to all the documents provided. Continue reading

Posted in Bubba System, FKAA, State government | 2 Comments

Bob Dean: Another Follow-up

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I’ve been circling back to some dormant issues lately.  One of those is Bob Dean’s apparent violation of the Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority’s (FKAA) rules regarding residency requirements.  Simply put, board members are supposed to live in the district which they represent.

For most of us, this is a straight-forward matter.  Where do you get your mail?  Where is your family?  Where do you keep your stuff?  Where does your dog hang out?  Where do you sleep at night?  Not for Mr. Dean.  More on that here. Continue reading

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One Down, Two to Go

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The questions keep piling up.

In this post, I talked about three questions I posed to Monroe County and the Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority (FKAA).

  1.  I asked the FKAA board about the status of Bob Dean’s residency issue.  No response.  I’ll try again.  Only this time I’ll put it in the form of a public records request.
  2. I asked Bob Shillinger to address the issue of the Hickory House sale.  It doesn’t appear to have been advertised in accordance with Florida law.  I’m very curious about that because (a) the taxpayers took a $1 million loss on the sale; and (b) it became part of the controversial Ocean’s Edge development.
  3. I asked Rhonda Haag to send a “sources and uses” report for the canal restoration projects.

Continue reading

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Pay to Play?

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An aerial from 2013 showing cleared areas.

When I looked at donations to Kevin Madok’s campaign for county clerk, I noted that two sizable donations came from landfill companies.  That struck me as odd.  Why would two landfill operations from out-of-town care who wins the election for Monroe County clerk of court?

Fast forward a month or two, and the county is crowing about some huge fines they’ve been allowed to impose on local business owner, Brian Lindback.  They are salivating over the possibility of foreclosing on his property.  It gives me the creeps.  It should give everyone the creeps.  Yesterday it was SUFA.  Today it’s Brian Lindback.  Who will be targeted tomorrow?  You?  Me?  Your sweet old granny? Continue reading

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Lindback: Hassled out of business and property?

New Monroe County Logo2I hear from quite a few people behind the scenes, and an awful lot of them tell me stories about being hassled out of business by Monroe County government or the City of Key West.  It’s hard to verify most of this, but I’m inclined to believe these folks because I know how the county operates.  They’re as sleazy as it gets.  They love bullying people and they love going on the attack.  They’ve already demonstrated that they’re more than happy to crap all over their taxpayers just because they can.  Why not roll over a few business owners, too? Continue reading

Posted in BOCC, Bubba System, Conflict of Interest, Monroe County | 2 Comments

Questions and Follow Ups

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Is this where all the tax money goes?

One of the many things that annoys me about the Board of County County Commissioners (BOCC) and their partner (in crime), the Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority (FKAA), is their tendency to shove things down the memory hole.  So I keep a running list of unresolved issues.  I followed up on two of those things just recently.  I copied members of Keys media.  We’ll see if anything pops up in the newspaper.  I’m especially interested to see what half-baked cover story the Citizen might come up with.  The things they react to and how they spin them are instructive sometimes.  After all, the Citizen more or less functions as the county/FKAA propaganda arm. Continue reading

Posted in BOCC, Bubba System, Canal Restoration, Conflict of Interest, FKAA, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Money for Who?

elections-1527438__480Update:  Here’s another article from the Keynoter/Reporter.  According to this, the money will be split among the entities in accordance with the 2013 interlocal agreement – meaning that the county will not be able to funnel it all to their wasteful and ridiculous canal projects.  KLWTD will supposedly get $3.3 million, which could go toward addressing the funding inequity that the state has historically tried to make worse.  The budget still has to go to the governor.  We’ll see what happens.

It looks like the Keys will be getting $13.3 million from the state.  That’s good I guess.  It’s taken a while, but I’ve finally learned not to get too over-excited.

Unfortunately, state money has a poor track record in the Keys.  When it has come through in the past, its been deployed in a way that only feeds corruption and waste.  Your every day citizen/taxpayer sees little benefit, but well-connected bubbas certainly do.

You can find a bit of history here. Continue reading

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It’s Back to Business for the District

smilies-110650__480Things seem to be moving right along at the Key Largo Wastewater Treatment District, and I couldn’t be happier.

First and most important, the District’s Lead Operator, Jered Primicerio, won an award.  It’s quite an honor, and quite an achievement.

Key Largo Wastewater Treatment District plant operator Jered Primicerio has received the David B. Lee Wastewater Award from the Florida Water and Pollution Control Operator’s Association.

The award has been given annually since 1964 to one plant operator in the state.

Congratulations to Jered Primicerio and the District.

This is a reminder of what the District is supposed to be about.  While the board and the General Manager were getting bogged down in silly minutia, the District’s technical staff were quietly and, very effectively, doing their jobs. Continue reading

Posted in KLWTD | 2 Comments

Rhetoric Vs. Results

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Ahhhh….it’s a “CRISIS!”.  Run.

Uh oh!  Looks like the affordable housing “CRISIS!” is coming straight for your wallet.

With 47 affordable housing deed restrictions set to expire in the next two years, the Monroe County Commission is now discussing how to save workforce housing.

The commission briefly broached the subject when it was talking about signing paperwork to release several properties from their deed restrictions and plans to revisit the issue within the next several months.

“How do we save these restrictions?” County Commissioner Heather Carruthers asked. “Do we have any program to buy back these restrictions? I haven’t seen anything from the Land Authority and nothing from staff. What can we do here?”

The bolding is mine.

First, I think it would be helpful to talk about the difference between a “CRISIS!” and a crisis. Continue reading

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