First, I take a deep breath, count to ten and try to temper my remarks.
Following my comment is a report of findings by Mike Gardiner. You know, the bad citizen , shark, who you have yet to defend.
For a moment, put aside the issue of management ineptness and consider another distressing fact. The city councils have either been an ally of inefficient management which smacks of operational corruption, or has been snowed or denied the facts. To further make me angry, this present city council, with the exception of Bob Ford, makes little effort to be really upset about all these revelations. With the exception of Bob Ford, the city council members sit there, wringgin their hands and for the record state that they are disturbed about all of this, and then retire back to watching the grass grow on dunlawton ave. My mood is to run for city council, get on the council, and shake all of your lazy asses up. But, I am too old. When the FD asked me to run for city council I did not know, how bad things were, nor was at a point of picking up a pitch fork, as I am now.
Why must we learn these facts from “bad citizens” and “sharks”, as a former city council man recently and present mayor named them?
I can’t wait for the next city council meeting and to zero in with a magnifying glass on your conduct in the next city council meeting and meetings to come. With the exception of Bob Ford, you guys are part of the problem, and I am fed up with you pansy elected officials.
Sorry, I am getting carried away. It is dawning on me that although I do not have the stamina to do a good job as councilman, I do have the guts to show up at city council meetings and give the city council and mayor hell for 3 minutes. And when that mayor gets abrupt and short with me, I will bring my three minutes to a climate that the situation deserves. Undignified, morally corrupt, elitist arrogance, non committal, and more if I at this time can calm down.
Don Burnette: Expect and demand more from your Mayor and city manger. Call them on not delivering the steps of real reform, like the activists are doing when they appear before the mayor to “make his day”.
Drew Bastian: Show us that you expect and demand more from our Mayor and city manger. Don’t just sit there looking like you are waiting for a fire department issue to come up before you but start acting like a city councilman now representing the citizens of Port Orange.
Dennis Kennedy: It is good that you are leaving.
If you can rebut all the negative specifics which are being revealed, week after week by our good citizens activists, do so. Change the perspective if you can. Otherwise, get with it, do your job, or step aside. You can be replaced by Scott Stiltner, Ted Noftall, Mike Gardiner, Dianne Gardiner, Newton White, and Mark Schaefer.
On another issue. It seems to me, that a renewed look at what the citizens’ advisory budget/finance board should be doing is necessary. If you decide to abandon such a fact finding committee, you will live with that mistake.
On another issue. The deliberations and discussions that have been held and will be held regarding giving 10 million dollars to a developer who may not even build the unwanted condos in his riverwalk park, are dramatic compared to the time spent turning down the citizens requests to financially help out seniors over the age of 65, who have owned their homes for 20 years or more in Port Orange and are in danger of losing their homes to foreclosure by heartless, sometimes criminal banks. Thank you Don Burnette and Dennis Kennedy for voting to spend pennies supporting seniors compared to Lacour’s park’s request for 10 million dollars. Bob Pohlmann, thank you for voting no to giving LaCour money for the purchase of the Lohmann funeral home, at a price more than twice its worth.
See, I don’t forget, and I remind everyone. Our web sites and blogs plant seeds of skepticism which flower with each new negative , distressing revelations about Port Orange City Government. No, I should change that. Many skepticism have been replaced with negative facts. Have you noticed that. And you city council people are standing on the farm we the citizens own. Think about it.
A few of us first noticed the Halifax Paving issue after reading about it on the agenda for the June 30th “mini-meeting” (a much shortened 15-minute special meeting of the Port Orange City Council). The Halifax agenda item was billed as an Amendment to a previous Agreement but read much more like a Restitution Agreement than a simple modification of anything existing. Turns out Halifax owes the City a lot of money and/or a lot of fill dirt, perhaps over a million dollars worth, and the City has known about it for years. Our initial simple questions as to how a million dollars can go unpaid or 7,000 loads of dirt can go missing quickly changed to “what’s been going on out there for almost a decade?” The project involves two huge man-made reclaimed water lakes (75 acres and 100 acres) located west and slightly south of the County landfill but it’s hard to find out much about them.
I’ve been able to find some stuff on the City’s website as far back as the 2005 link that you reference and have requested info from the City on what happened prior to that (starting probably in 2003 or 2004?). From what R. Woodman wrote earlier today his first-hand knowledge goes back much farther than that. At any rate, I’ve attached the links I’ve been able to find and there may be more out there that I haven’t been able to find yet. Please look them over (AND ANYONE ELSE WHO READS THIS BLOG!) and let me know what you think. My impression is that somewhere in the 2008 to 2010 range things went south on the reclaimed lakes project since it seemed to pretty much drop from public view. That of course doesn’t mean that nothing was happening, only that we don’t have an easily accessible record of it. What has transpired recently–special meetings with no public comment and special meetings between the City Manager, City Attorney and Contractor, again with no public comment–could have been going on from 2008 to now and we would never have known about it.
We’ll try to ask some relevant questions at the July 17, 2014 meeting this Thursday but don’t really expect any answers. The only way answers will be forthcoming is if the Council demands them and so far they seem content to pretend nothing is wrong. Halifax Paving Change Orders/Extensions, etc. to Fill Dirt Contract https://www.port-orange.org/documents/meetings/regular/2005-05-03/05032005commentary.htm#Item#14 https://www.port-orange.org/documents/meetings/regular/2007-11-13/11132007commentary.htm#Item#06 https://www.port-orange.org/documents/meetings/regular/2008-12-02/12022008commentary.htm#Item#13 https://www.port-orange.org/documents/meetings/regular/2013-12-10/commentary.htm#item25 https://www.port-orange.org/documents/meetings/special/2014-06-30/agenda.htm https://www.port-orange.org/documents/meetings/special/2014-07-17/agenda.htm