There is a honey catches more flies than vinnegar, and other mystical ponderations post today at goodmorningbirimingham.com.
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From the duplicate bridge column in The Key West Citizen today:
Robert Frost, a winner of four Pulitzer Prizes for poetry [as well as Key West's poet laureate] said, “Two roads diverged in a wood and I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.”
Meanwhile, from an amigo
on the state bill headed through the Florida Legislature, which would see to it that Key West does not get any land taxes from the developers of Peary Court, vetted in yesterday’s Pearl Harbor lookout, the second and later comings, Florida Keys blackboard jungle lame duckdom and Key West Peary Courtdom post:
Dearest Sloan. RE: SB 531
To say the fix is in would be putting it nicely. I suppose a $500,000 “commitment to the Florida Republican Party would go a long way to get a bill passed to save a foreign corporation $80 million in back taxes and go on for 50 years, or more. But the truth of the matter is 1. The Corporation is required under federal law to pay the taxes, 2. they are now receiving and have been since Oct 2007 ,the tax money from the federal government and not turning it over to the certain citys, counties, school districts That is embezzling Federal Funds… most places this is a Felony!!! (False Claims Act) So the Media regurgitates the Corporate golbidi gook and doesn’t ask for blood. Why not get the Federal Government on the record with the facts…… enough of the lies from the private sector.. Any other private companies in the property rental business going to get a wavier on taxes for renting to Military? No… It’s just a BIG Lie….. Sincerely, Nicholas Anderson Key West, Florida 33040
From Nashville J, on yesterday’s post.
I would do exactly what Michael Kinneer is doing. Mark Porter, pulled the pin on the gernade and Michael Kinneer has reset the timer and pitched it back across the fence.
“I am reluctant to leave the district short-handed at such an important stage in our planning for 2013-14.”
Sorry Mark, but it makes no difference what YOU want at this point since M Kinneer has made official notification of his 30 day notice. Not sure whether the other two will do the same or not but Porter’s plan of the three of them getting the important work done before their contracts are not renewed is looking iffy. They all three might very likely fall “sick” between now and the time that the audit finding can be responded to later in the month – I understand that the flu has been very bad this year.
On a different front, State Rep. Holly Raschein, would have done well to have reviewed the bill, talked to the city and county and citizens comments BEFORE voting for it. Would the bill have passed the committee IF any of them had actually talked to people involved in it? Of course she may very well have talked to the Mayor Craig Cates and he told her that the City supported the bill and did not want the 11 million dollars [in taxes].
I wrote back:
yep, yep, and yep, but I’m getting redundant, repeating myself, repeating myself; maybe Mayor Cates and Holly had that talk, but Mayor Cates’ thinking and utterances are getting seriously bizarre, and I wuz thinking of scrapbooking his more memorables for a rainy day – you interested in being that archivist?
Well, as you know, I only get what I read at your blogs on the days I get to read it (which is most days but I do miss a coupe days a week it seems) – so not sure that I know all the dumbshit that he says . Therefore, not sure I am the one to be an archivist for such a important list.
It would actually be fun, if one had time, to archive the Mayor, School Board and all the public figures as to quotes and such and be able to “FEED THEM THEIR OWN WORDS” when the occasion called for it. YOU appear to do that in your head – not sure how – but you remember it and sometimes appear to be the only one who does.
What would you save from today for such an archive???
I sent back this part of the article in the Key West Citizen yesterday:
Only Mayor Craig Cates dissented, saying he wasn’t certain Tuesday if the resolution represented the majority opinion of Key West residents.
“I agree they should be paying taxes, but the thing about it is, if we weren’t the city that was going to benefit from those taxes, would we feel the same way?” Cates asked rhetorically.
Cates is a dickhead but the sheeple will probably elect the dumbass again.
I have to admit, Craig has an appealing smile and a nice face. Yet I found myself thinking yesterday, that maybe he ain’t all he appears on the surface to be.
Excerpt from a letter to the editor in The Key West Citizen today, lamenting not having term limits for the US Congress:
If we are to solve modern problems, we need new thinking — thinking that breaks with things of the past and most certainly with things that didn’t work. We are not going to get new thinking on any problem until we replace those who are locked into the past.
I think the same rationale applies to state and local offices.
I still have maybe 200 RE-ELECT NO ONE bumper stickers, which a north Georgia amigo gave to me in 2006.
Speaking of upheavals, in The Key West Citizen today:
City attorney advises ‘cone of silence’
BY GWEN FILOSA Citizen Staff firstname.lastname@example.org
City officials and staff may become legally barred from speaking to prospective contractors and others actively competing for city of Key West bids.
The new ordinance, dubbed the “cone of silence,” would come from the city commissioners themselves and prevent a vendor lobbying for a paycheck outside of the public arena.
Raised by City Attorney Shawn Smith, the measure would protect elected officials and city staff from allegations of conflict of interest by simply prohibiting anyone who is bidding on a contract to personally, privately lobby a commissioner or an employee at City Hall.
“My idea is to bring a heightened sense of transparency and integrity to the process,” said Smith. “Given the amount of contracts, I anticipate there will be a great deal of lobbying for each one of you and staff members as well.”
Smith said, “A ‘cone of silence’ would prohibit communication with commission and staff members from the time you release a [solicitation for bids] until the commission action is final.”
Lobbying could still take place at public meetings, said Smith, who advised the seven commissioners at their Tuesday meeting that he would return with a specific proposed resolution.
I imagine that ordinance, if passed, would make Key West’s elected officials lives interesting; and, I imagine the ordinance would be honored mostly in the breach.
What? The city is going to tap the city commissioners and the mayor’s cell phones, and hack into their personal email accounts?
The city is going to have city police spy on city commissioners and the mayor when they are not at city hall?
The city commissioners and the mayor are going to stop attending public functions, parties, grand openings, the Bottle Cap Lounge Friday evening fund raisers?
The city commissioners and mayor are going to stop talking to friends, who have friends, who have items coming before the City Commission?
Smith brought up the idea in light of Key West’s $100 million in contracts for building projects about to come online.
“I would welcome it,” said City Commissioner Jimmy Weekley. “Particularly with the number of projects we have coming before us over the next few years.”
Broward County has had a “cone of silence” law on the books since 2001, under the “lobbying activities” section of the municipal code.
A vendor found guilty of violating it faces fines. Three violations can lead to a vendor’s “debarment” from bidding on projects.
The “cone of silence” typically begins from the moment a vendor submits a bid and doesn’t expire until the bid is awarded.
“I want to make sure this doesn’t keep us from talking to our constituents,” said Commissioner Tony Yaniz, who added he has spoken to the city attorney about such an ordinance. “We’re a small community; we see people on the street.”
Smith said the measure is meant to prohibit people who have a financial stake in a project from chatting up commissioners behind closed doors or otherwise off the record.
Constituents should always have access to commissioners, Smith said.
“It would attempt to remove any influence from people who have a stake in the outcome,” Smith said.
Smith didn’t give a timeline Tuesday, but said he would craft the ordinances for the commission’s review.
Such a new ordinance might look good, but enforcement would be virtually impossible. Might as well pass an ordinance outlawing hurricanes, and another ordinance outlawing booze on Duval Street.
Why not pass an ordinance saying, city commissioners and the mayor, and members of the city planning board and city advisory committees, can not participate in the discussion of, or vote on, any item in which they, or any of their relatives, have a financial interest.
Such as, Commissioner Mark Rossi doesn’t get to discuss or vote on anything that has to do with lower Duval Street, since he has businesses on lower Duval Street.
Such as, Commissioner Rossi doesn’t get to discuss or vote on anything having to do with cruise ships, since cruise ship passengers patronize his pub and strip joint on Duval Street.
Likewise, Commissoner Weekley doesn’t get to discuss or vote on anything having to do with cruise ships, since cruise ship passengers patronize his family’s grocery store, Faustos.
Such as, Mayor Cates doesn’t get to discuss or vote on anything that might generate real estate commissions for Realtors, such as Peary Court, since his wife is a Realtor.
That ordinance would need no policing outside of city government meetings, because it would only apply to those meetings.
Meanwhile, why doesn’t Shawn Smith do something about the RICO operation his Assistant City Attorney Ronald Ramsingh heads up at the Key West Tree Commission, also known in Key West as the Tree Nazis,
members of which are appointed by the mayor upon advice of the city commissioner, and then they serve at the leisure of the mayor and the city commissioners.