Hey Florida House of Representatives Holly Raschein and Governor Rick Scott – Please help us, we’re falling, in really deep deep doo doo! Thanks, your lower Florida Keys

Holly Raschein 2Rick Scott

Holly Raschein, left, Governor Scott, right

lower Florida Keys

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yellow brick roadwild queen conch

From gettheleadout@______.com yesterday:

Hi Sloan, Just wanted to say Thank You for all your help on the grinder pump shit. You are appreciated! Paula

I replied, sent it, reread it, found two typos, resent it corrected with this note:

I saw a couple of typo flubs in my first swipe, please use this one below, if you pass it along. Thanks

pelican pooping

Hi, Paula, am glad to do what I can, even if the angels give me the dickens sometimes when I ain’t got it figured out just to their liking when I turn in at night, thinking I have it all figured out, or maybe hoping.

I feel it’s really important that Governor Scott be made aware of what is going on down here in this state-designated area of critical concern under state mandate to be sewered to reduce human waste pollution as much as possible. Based on all I’ve read and heard, gravity easily is the most efficient sewer system to produce the best environmental result, and grinder pump systems are the least efficient, perhaps overall not even as good as onsite septic systems, which are to be replaced along with cess pits. Governor Scott has released a lot of money to the Keys for them to be sewered correctly. I do not believe he intended for that money to directly or indirectly subsidize Florida Keys local governments installing environmentally inferior general sewer systems.


Just as troubling, Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority knows gravity is environmentally superior to grinder systems, and easier to maintain, and cheaper in the long haul. Yet knowing that, FKAA went along with that it knew was an inferior general sewer system in all respects. So, are the people running FKAA idots? Are they fools? Are they on the take? As I wrote today, what FKAA is doing, at the County Commission’s bidding, simply does not pass the smell test, and when something does not pass the smell test, something fishy is going on.

fishy smell

Governor Scott may say, so what? But he may say, why in the hell wasn’t I told about this before I saw on FOX News this morning how the Cudjoe regional sewer system failed miserably following Hurricane I Told You So. Governor Scott appointed the FKAA Board  members, who serve at his leisure. He gets credit for whatever they do, for better or worse. Our own State Representative Holly Raschein, from Key Largo, ought to camping on Governor Scott’s front yard about this. But is she? I don’t know. Is anyone keeping Governor Scott in this loop? I don’t know. I don’t have his ear, I’m just a raving lunatic. Somebody needs to make sure Governor Scott is aware of what FKAA and the County Commission are doing in this state-designated area of critical concern.


jumping tarpontailing permit

pelican divingOspreyBahia Honda

Bahia Honda 2

Feel free to share this diatribe with others, including Holly Raschein, whom I know somewhat, and FKAA and Monroe County officials.



Paula wrote:

Not to worry, I too am dyslexic, typos make us more human : )

I wrote:

I, too, am dyslexic, which must express God’s humor, since God made me into a writer 🙂

Paula wrote:

Someone did write Scott. Seems all you get is a lame response from his secretary. I have found this to be the case when fighting the refuge, all you get is a who gives a shit reply from all of them. The only office that was somewhat helpful was Ileana’s.

> Subject: RE: Cudjoe Key Wastewater
> Date: Fri, 15 Nov 2013 13:32:26 -0500
> From: Rick.Scott@eog.myflorida.com
> To: itsnoteasy@hotmail.com
> CC: sunburst@eog.myflorida.com
> Dear Ms. Marburger:
> Thank you for contacting Governor Rick Scott. The Governor appreciates your concerns and asked me to respond on his behalf.
> Although we appreciate your concerns, the Governor’s ability to intervene in local government issues is limited. Our government is structured on the principle that communities can best assess the needs of their residents. Voters elect their county officials to manage local government business. Those dissatisfied with the performance of local officials can always make their views known directly to those officials. Your best source of assistance with your concerns is contacting your county commissioners.
> Thank you again for taking the time to contact Governor Scott. We are sorry we could not be of further assistance. Please know this is due to a lack of jurisdiction, not a lack of concern. Governor Scott hopes your concerns can be resolved to your satisfaction.
> Sincerely,
> Kelly Pacchioli
> Office of Citizen Services
> Executive Office of the Governor

I wrote:

I mean someone who has Governor Scott’s ear already, someone he knows.

I also meant, literally, Holly Raschein should be camped on Governor Scott’s front yard about this.

Mother Nature

Paula then copied me with this below, copied to many lower Keys recipients:

Banks, Sloan suggested we start knocking on the door of Holly Raschein. I copied her my letter to the commissioners and sent her a note see below. If everyone that wrote a letter would please copy and paste it in her contact info (below) we may get her to help us or if you could just write a quick note to her, the more the better. Please
forward to group.


Dear Holly, We really need your help here in Monroe county. The letter below is one of many sent to our county commissioners here in Monroe county. It is regarding their decision to put the lower keys on a grinder pump sewer system instead of the much more reliable gravity sewer. The community is in great distress over this poor decision and is presently seeking an attorney to fight the commissioners who refuse to listen and put our tax money towards it’s intended purpose, a practical and good working gravity sewer. Please read the letter below and visit our website www.dumpthepumps.com. Holly, Please help us.

Thank you, Paula Cannon


I live on Big Pine Key and received notice we are going to go on a Grinder Pump instead of the Gravity System. We attended the FKAA meeting but to our surprise, none of you were present, nor were you present at the North region meeting at the Vinyard. It was clear from the crowds reaction that the vast marjority did not want to be on grinder pumps and anger escalated because part of Port Pine Heights was switched to gravity while all other areas were not. The Florida Keys are unique in many ways from other locations where Grinder Pumps are used. This must be taken into consideration.

As you know, all of the keys and their waterways are areas of critical concern and most of Big Pine Key is a Federal Refuge. This is why the sewer plan was put in place to begin with, to treat sewage so that it would stop polluting our fragile islands and leach into waters, degrading our reefs, sea life and water quality. Nobody is disputing this. What we do take issue with is this completely short sighted plan to install hundreds of Grinder Pumps that will likely escalate these environmntal problems rather then correct them. Why remove septic tanks then switch to a system that will do just as much damage and cost everyone far more. Gravity is the only long term solution, grinder pumps are a temporary patch with long term implications that will continue to cost everyone money.

Grinder pumps have been a miserable failure in other parts of Florida where they backed up onto the land, waterways as well as homes during hurricanes and ultimately had to be replaced with a better system such as gravity or vacuum. We are at a far greater risk of that happening here and impacts will greatly outweigh those of the mainland due to our unique geography. We are on fragile islands at sea level, on rock and surrounded by water. Pipes break and leak and are not detectable on grinder pump systems and when we have another storm surge and the power is out for weeks, raw sewage will float right into the sea, from every direction. This is basically what happens now, with septic tanks. So why I ask you, would you choose to put so many neighborhoods on grinder pumps rather then gravity or even a vacuum system? The maintenance at so many hundreds of individual sites alone will be impractical if not impossible for the small FKAA staff. I can understand using a grinder pump when there is one home miles out from a neighborhood or a driveway several hundred feet long, then yes, it is appropriate, but we are talking about developed neighborhoods which are just like Port Pine Heights, that you chose to put on an inferior system, when we should ALL be on gravity.

Aside from the main and most important Environmental reason, there are far more reasons why these grinder pumps won’t work in the Keys.

*A great majority of residents are seasonal, grinder pumps fail more frequently when not in use for long periods, what will this cost the tax payers and homeowners? Will our sewer bills keep going up as these pumps constantly fail?

*Many homes are rented both short and long term, there is no way to control who will flush what.

*Children flush everything, do we now need childproof bathrooms?

*Many lock their gates for security reasons while away. How will FKAA get into the many locked gates when the grinder pump alarms start going off and the owners are up north or their electric gate won’t open due to a power outage?

*We had no power for three weeks during Wilma but we could still flush with a bucket of water, try that with a grinder pump and you will need rubber boots. Fill your bathtub so you have water during a hurricane? Not anymore, drain it and it’s a backup right into your tub and shower! Insurance won’t pay for damages or cleanup.

*We were told at the meeting FKAA would send out trucks with generators in the event of a long term outage! LOL! This is not possible and you and FKAA know it. There is not enough staff or trucks to come close to addressing so many hundreds of grinder pumps during a power outage, this is pure insanity!

*Then there is the issue of having to pay an electrician to put in 220 so I can install “county equipment” on my property and lose use of 100 sq. foot minimum not counting the trench length, where I can no longer have trees. Who will ultimately pay for maintenance, repairs etc. long term? We were told FKAA would, is that what the folks in Key Largo were told too? Will this all fall on the proud new grinder pump owners in the future after the warranty expires or will it show up on everyones sewer bill?

The list goes on.

You keep telling us grinder pumps are a good system that you fully support, but much evidence to the contrary raises too many questions to be ignored and makes me wonder how you came to that conclusion.

Just what is good about them? Money seems to be at the forefront as always, yet their seems to be plenty of it from the recent list of projects and purchases that you all have approved and put ahead of what should be priority number one, a valid GRAVITY SEWER STSTEM to protect our environment, waters and reefs so tourists will actually still have reason to come.

FKAA said they support Gravity in the Keys but need YOU to approve the funding which we have all been paying in taxes for many years. Our money is in your hands and it should be used for the number one priority issue in the Keys, a Gravity Sewer System to insure future land, water and reef quality.

This is the whole point of a sewer project!

I ask that you please choose Gravity Systems for ALL neighborhoods. It is by far, the best and only choice for the people and our Florida Keys.

Paula Cannon

I wrote to Paula and copied it to Banks:

thumbs up

Hi, Paula –

A good start. No guarantee it will have any effect, but this is something Holly should be all over. I heard Holly at a number of forums when she ran to get the House seat Ron Saunders was having to vacate due to term limits. She was adamant that she was a Florida Keys person, she lived on Key Largo, and she would ever look after people in the Keys up in Tallahassee. She needs to be educated, if she has not already been educated. Different people in the lower Keys should follow your lead, Paula, by sending Holly something compelling, as you did today. Governor Scott has no say so over how the County Commission spends the 1 percent sales tax, but he has a great deal of say so giving the Florida Keys more money for sewering the Keys and other projects dear to the County Commissioners’ hearts. It might help for Holly to be apprised of the permit violations DEP issued, as that involves Tallahassee and Governor Scott directly. Besides having authority over FKAA’s Board of Directors, he has authority over the Florida Department of Environmental Protection through which the Cudjoe regional sewer system must be approved and permitted.

The Feds surely have interest in this situation, especially on Big Pine Key.


Other Christ-mas news from the anti-grinder pump camp:

3. Send out an email to all the people on the list that www.DumpThePumps.com is the website and encourage them to share it with their neighbors and friends.  In addition, the Facebook page is up.  Rather than sending everything to you, Banks, people need to be asked to please POST all their letters-to and responses-from the BOCC on Facebook. Website is http://www.facebook.com/DumpThePumps . They’ll need to share it with their Facebook friends and talk the site up to everyone they can.

FYI: Saturday’s Keynoter.  


Banks, Found this online. See Neugent quoted below, full article on link at the bottom. Wonder why he is in love with grinder pumps now???

County Mayor George Neugent said he is concerned that the plans developed by the Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority include too many grinder pumps and rely too much on low-pressure technology.

“I understand using a low-pressure system in the remote areas, but Cudjoe Gardens, Sugarloaf and Summerland are not remote areas,” Neugent said. “You are going to have neighborhoods in which one side of the street is going to be using one type of technology and the other side is going to be using another type of technology.”



Banks Prevatt sent out yesterday:

This was rumored last week, but now, it looks like this is for real — a special meeting of the BOCC for Jan 31.  It appears the sewer issues that were scheduled for the 16th may now be delayed until the 31.
I received this today and am not sure of the implications except more grinder lines and grinders will go in the ground before this meeting.
100+ blind copies

To: Bgprevatt@__________
Sent: 12/23/2013 10:20:51 A.M. Eastern Standard Time
Subj: FW: BOCC Special Meeting


From: Vitia Fernandez [mailto:vfernandez@monroe-clerk.com]
Sent: Monday, December 23, 2013 9:56 AM
To: Andy Newman; Beverly Traeger; Bill Becker; BP LK) Mark Phelps (Free Press MK (marathon@keysnews.com); David Goodhue; Ezra Marcus; Jason Koler; Josh Gore (jgore@keysnews.com); KW Citizen Photos (photos@keysnews.com); Larry Kahn (lkahn@keynoter.com); legals@keysnews.com; Mak Howell (solareshill@keysnews.com); Richard Lopez; Richard Tamborrino; Ryan McCarthy (rmccarthy@keynoter.com); Steve Estes (bigpinenews@aol.com); Tamara Lamarche; Tim O’Hara (tohara@keysnews.com)
Cc: Kathy Peters; Shillinger-Bob (Shillinger-Bob@MonroeCounty-FL.Gov); Cyr-Connie@monroecounty-fl.gov; Gastesi-Roman@monroecounty-fl.gov; Belle Desantis; Carol Shreck (Schreck-Carol@monroecounty-fl.gov); Pam Johnson; Terri Colonna
Subject: BOCC Special Meeting

Please see the attached memorandum from our County Mayor, Sylvia J. Murphy calling a Special Meeting of the Board of County Commissioners on January 31st, 2014 beginning at 9:00am in the BOCC Meeting Room located at the Harvey Government Center, 1100 Truman Avenue, Key West, FL.  The purpose of the Special Meeting will be:

1.     Discussion and direction regarding County funding for conversion from low pressure collection systems (aka grinder pumps) to gravity collection systems for any additional areas of the Cudjoe Regional Wastewater collection system.

2.     A Public Hearing to consider a Resolution transmitting to the State Land Planning Agency an Ordinance by the Monroe County Board of County Commissioners amending Policy 101.2.6 of the Monroe County Comprehensive Plan to extend the transient ROGO allocation moratorium from May 1, 2014 to May 1, 2022 to coincide with the adoption of the next round of EAR-related comprehensive plan amendments.

3.     Any item on the January 16, 2014 regular BOCC meeting agenda which the County Commission decides to defer until the January 31, 2014 special meeting.

Thank you,

Happy Holidays!!!

Vitia Fernandez

Executive Administrative Aide to the

Clerk of Circuit Court & Comptroller

500 Whitehead Street

Key West FL 33040

(305) 295-3130


Banks Prevatt also sent out:

 This is the most valuable and telling graph I have seen ranking the different sewage systems.  It appears If they want to give us Grinders, It would, actually be better overall to keep the septic’s.  Study conducted by Engineers for Cape Coral, FL
A relative ranking table has been prepared to compare the various alternatives as follows:
                          Comparative Rankings of Alternatives
Alternative                 Cost        Environment       Reliability        Permitting         Homeowner
Gravity                          4                  1                         1                       1                           1
Vacuum                        2                  3                         4                       1                           2
Small Diam.                 3                  2                         3                       6                           3
LP – Grinder                6                  5                         6                       1                           6
LP – STEP                   5                 4                          5                       1                           3
On-Site (Septic)           1                 6                         1                        5                           5


Note: 1 = Best Rank and 6 = Worst Rank


This also sailed in, replying to the poem in the Gravity and Justice For All … Lower Florida Keys Shitgrinder Rebellion article in this week’s issue of www.thebluepaper.com:

Damn it. There is always some kind shit when it comes to Bubbaism, don't ya know. 

Here I sit with shit a grindin
when most of are just findin 
Shit doesn't run up hill
Shit doesn't grind up hill 
But shit doesn't stand still
People will not stand still 
To see if shit is standing still

pelican pooping

There is a different post today at www.goodmorningkeywest.com, which you should be able to see by clicking on that link today, and by clicking on this link at anytime:

Hey Key West’s Fantasy Fest! You surely cannot believe that Jesus would approve of public nudity, do you? And other southernmost Christ-mas cheer 🙂

Sloan at Coco's

Sloan Bashinsky




About Sloan

That's what this website is about, also goodmorningkeywest.com and goodmorningbirmingham.com. If you can't get a publisher to take on your wacky musing, you do it yourself.
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