"Let he who is without sin cast the first stone".

Take a deep breath everyone

“Let he who is without sin cast the first stone”.  I would have to keep my hand in my pocket.

Pohlmann2So what is Ted guilty of?
I remember when and why Ted first got involved in Port Orange politics. Over the last few years I have spoken to Ted many, many times. We would speak after every council meeting and I would speak to him on my way to work at least once a week. I know he spoke to other council members also, as he does now. Our conversations were always friendly towards each other although on many issues we disagreed, both locally and nationally. But we also agreed on many issues. I told Ted after the election 2 years ago that he should have been elected. I still believe that. Even at council meetings Ted seems to be respectful. There is much to like about Ted.  But when Ted gets on the computer to communicate some thoughts, he can get abrasive, and others have joined him.
When this website started around two years ago, it became a place for Ted to vent his frustrations at city government. Other citizens jumped on board with their criticisms. Some of the criticism is well deserved. But most comments on this website are not based on facts, they are based on innuendos. That is not fair. I will say what Ted has uncovered is based on facts and demands attention and corrections. Ted is equally critical of all council members. He is demanding accountability at all levels. I applaud his service.
I don’t think the issue with Ted has to do with his activism. For that we can all support him and no one should question his right to demand accountability. I think the issue has to do with some emails he may have sent to councilman and employees in his role as a member of an advisory board. This issue is something that should be clarified. Were they harassing or threatening emails? Was it a sunshine law violation? I don’t know the answer to these questions but If everything is fine and above board, let’s move on.
I do not support the public humiliation that Ted was subjected to last week. I hope there is no additional hearing for his removal. He serves at the pleasure of the council. If they don’t want him to serve anymore then they shouldn’t reappoint him when his term is up.
We can all agree that what has occurred in Port Orange has not been pleasant.  At times it has been embarrassing and wasteful. But we do have many wonderful things to be proud of. I hope we can all take a deep breath and come together to support this great community that we call home.

Bob Pohlmann

29 thoughts on “"Let he who is without sin cast the first stone".

  • August 11, 2014 at 12:00 pm

    Bob, thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.
    “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone”. I understand that you are not religious but nevertheless you can see value in such a biblical saying. I think the supporters of the Catholic Church have used such a passage to avoid accountability for her sexual predatory priests.
    Any way, much of what you write seems sensible. But once again, you disapprove of connecting dots and suspecting that a picture lurks in the background. Unlike the scientific method of discovery, you will not approve of speculation. Suspicion according to you is an ugly human attribute and should have no business being voiced in politics. Like the Clinton supporters who cheered Bill Clinton right into impeachment, the citizens were urged not to speculate or be suspicious unless they had facts. Do you remember that Bob? And when the dress with the semen was found, and after the senate on a tie breaker refused to indict the President, Bill’s supporters took the attitude, “See he was not found guilty, this was all an ugly issue brought up by sex perverts, who had dirty imaginations.”
    Bob, supporters of city government in my opinion are very close to the perspective I have of the Clinton supporters. Do I have to count the number of financial special interest people who spoke before the city council and did not say, they wanted accountability in city government, they wanted the city council to get to the bottom of these issues, the wanted the city manager to put in true reform and accountability, but they did say that they want the citizens to tone down their complaints, stop coming before the city council week after week, and complaining with the attitude they have. You see Bob, something is very wrong in Port Orange Politics. Let me change my previous sentence to “You have eyes but you see not”.
    I at first had thought that Ted should step down as chairman and avoid this whole spectacle, but after considering how special financial interest people came out of the back rooms to silence the critics, I realize that for the sake of transparency, this whole thing with Ted is turning out ok. Except for showing up to support giving a developer $5 million dollars, we have not seen much of these financial special interest people. But now they came out of the woodwork, not to complain about the loss of millions of dollars, or lack of internal real controls, but that some people in the city of Port Orange dare to question the “we are family” crowd.
    This is a very bad situation in Port Orange where some people suspect the city government because of the loss of millions of dollars of at least having a corrupt working ethic. This is a very bad situation when a group of people are not concerned about that but only wants to return to the blissful ignorance days of Parker, Shelley and Mayor Green. I know that you now sit up on your chair when I mention the name Green. So let me further explain how bad things really are in Port Orange. After I had sent an e mail to the city council some years ago, you came to me and I appreciated that and we had a 2 or 3 hour conversation. You disagreed with me that the lack of transparency in the city council should lead to suspicions. You defended Mayor Green and told me that Port Orange politics was not like we knew it up in the North East. Some years later I asked you if Green had asked you to come and hash it out with me, and you said that he did not, so I accept that. But yes, I suspected such. Is that bad?
    In recent e mails to me on two occasions you asked me if I thought Green was doing something illegal. I replied no, I have no facts to say that. Recently on this blog you have asked if Green had done something illegal and I do not know what the responses were to you. And then Green mutters something for the record in the city council, and he had to be told to speak up, and Green jokingly said that he did not want us to hear him, and proceeded to clearly state that he has consulted a Lawyer because some of the things written about him on blogs attack his integrity.
    Pohlmann, financial special interests, all coming forward to silence suspicions and skepticism, but not inquiring about the loss of millions of dollars, lack of controls, and lack of transparency, does not do supporters of Mayor Green and city government any good. I am looking forward to the hearing or trial if you would, because it will become a forum to explain the anger and frustration of not only Ted but others in this city.
    Let me summarize Bob. Since I have seen the support of Mayor Green from people who do not join in demanding accountability and explanations of what has been going wrong, I am convinced that something is terribly wrong in this city when people who confuse accountability with harassment and worry first about the morale of city workers. All this does not help deter my interest in let’s following the dots some more and maybe we will turn up something.
    The dirt hauling issue apparently has been concluded with a satisfactory explanation although there are a few items yet to become clear. But Bob, who has earnestly tried to investigate or find answers to why a million or so dollars are owed to the city taxpayers in regards to hauling city dirt? Someone in city government, or in the special financial interest group? No, the work done to look at the paper work in that dirt issue came from the group which has suspicions and skepticism. If our city managers and city council people had in the past worked up a little more skepticism and suspicion then perhaps the city would not have lost millions of tax payers’ money.
    You can certainly bet that I would not vote for someone to the city council who detests skepticism and suspicions, and accountability. It is clear to me, that supporters of Mayor Green are not strong supporters of accountability, and that is what is wrong in the city of Port Orange. I think this issue will probably be explored in Noftall’s defense in the upcoming hearing.
    “Can’t we all get along”? Only if citizens remain civil about all that has happened? B.S., there is anger to be expressed at the people who have been managing our money and that includes the Mayor and some city council people. And Bob, I now put you on that my list. That is my opinion; you were part of the blissful ignorance group who could not demean yourself to be suspicious or skeptical. And now you continue, which is not only your right but beneficial to all of us, to express opinions which I think can be summed up as, things are bad, but don’t be so hard on Mayor Green and those who have only made honest mistakes. In some of the things that went wrong there were no honesty involved. Need I enumerate?
    Bob, because you can’t be suspicious or skeptical about anything, I am glad you are no longer on the city council. I welcome the new Drew Bastian who is emerging out of his fox hole, Bob Ford and the next council person Scott Stiltner. Now I know why the grand master developer wanted an immediate vote on giving him $5 million dollars of tax payers’ money or he was walking away from his partnership with the city on building a city park. It is advantageous for him to have gotten his policy request form the city manager which his lawyer said was a binding commitment before the new council is voted in.
    And add this to my list. Mayor Green said that he always thought that the master developer should have been a silent partner with the city. That is the way Mayor Green plays his cards as far as I can see.
    Ok, let’s get to what I think you really want to know Bob. Everyone who is stupid enough to say it, and think that Mayor Green has done something illegal, say so on this blog and put your real name to it. Mayor Green, Bob and the special financial interest people seem to be quite concerned about your real opinions.
    Hank will start first. I have no knowledge of Mayor Green having done anything illegal. Bob, does this help your cause?
    Sorry bob, but the issues here are very serious. This blog is not a silly Facebook or teenager CB radio communication. Real issues are here, the kind of issues that are found all over the nation, which you do not seem to appreciate.
    However Bob, please do not stop offering your opinion about this whole mess. I may not agree but I do want to know what city hall supporters are really thinking.
    hank springer

    • August 11, 2014 at 9:05 pm

      Hello Hank. There is clearly something wrong in Port Orange city government. There have been serious breaches in procedures that have cost the city millions. There is an absolute need for over site, there is a need for accountability and transparency. The way the city has been operating is an embarrassment to me as a citizen and a past councilman as it should be an embarrassment to all citizens. I am sure the present situation is a complete embarrassment to the present council. Yet, nothing seems to change. I would ask, as you have, as Ted has, as all the activists have, as all chamber of commerce members have, and as all citizens have. What the hell is going on? Why has it not been changed. So Hank, we all agree it is a mess. The public works issue was an embarrassment and Warren was released. The John Shelly issue with water meters under and over billing, and buy out was an embarrassment and John was released. The public utilities issue with sick leave buyouts was an embarrassment and Roger Smith was released. The new over purchase of water meters was an embarrassment. The list goes on and on. Ted and the activists have been critical of all these debacles as they should. Everyone in Port Orange is shaking their heads. I talk to people all over town who ask me what is going on. This we can all agree on.
      Obviously some past department heads had to go. The recent resignations were needed to move forward. But why did Shannon Lewis leave? Why did Chief Pozzo leave? That is also part of the equation. What happens when the unions control the council. That could happen soon. That is part of the equation. Why did Councilman Ford tell Shannon Lewis he would play nice if she accepted the interim CM position. What made him say that? That is part of the equation. Why do city employees feel so intimidated and fear for their jobs? That is part of the equation.
      I have no proof, nor did I know of any when I was on council, that there is anything shady going on. I know of no deal for Buddy LaCour. Everyone, the city, investors, and developers lost a ton of money down there. I think the city overpaid for the funeral home and the Galbreath properties. I am not aware of any deals for fill dirt. I did not know, nor do I now know of anything illegal going on. When that is proved, if at all, then I will change my opinion. If anybody has any proof, please tell me and I will admit to being naive. If any council member knows of anything illegal I have not heard of it. So I don’t comment irrationally on speculation.
      Now there can be a difference of opinion on city related issues but that is what they are, opinions. For instance, how can Bastion and Ford vote not to give tax breaks to senior citizens and then turn around and give a promoter from Ormond Beach, a for profit promoter, $23,000 worth of fee waivers to throw a pumpkin bash in Port Orange? We, as citizens pay that $23k. That makes no sense to me. Would you be critical of that? I guess we can be critical on what ever we choose. We can choose which council member we can be critical of. Your choice for candidates is not my choice. But that is my opinion.
      So Hank, there are many moving parts in the city operation in Port Orange. There is much more going on then meets the eye. You and the activists are 100% correct. It is a disaster on the city council and in the day to day operation. You have your opinion on what the issues are and I have mine. My opinion is no better than yours, or vice versa. But I will tell you this, while everyone is screaming about this and that, the unions are coming in under the radar and are tring to control the council. No one is even talking about it. You think that’s a good thing? That to me is another disaster in the making. Then you will start to see some special interest groups becoming very powerful.
      So Hank, I do not expect you to see where I am coming from, nor do I expect you to accept my opinions. I try not to jump to conclusions. There are two sides to every issue. Not everything is black and white. And I accept the American way, innocent until proven guilty.
      Bob Pohlmann

    • August 12, 2014 at 7:40 pm

      Hello Hank. I sent you a lengthy reply last evening but I must have hit the wrong reply button. Or maybe it was intentionally deleted.
      One thing we can all agree on is that the issues at city hall are an embarrassment to all citizens. What occurred while I was on council the last year was an embarrassment to me. I would hope that what has occurred the last two years is an embarrassment to the present council. If people want to blame me, as a council member, while I served as a member of council, I will accept part of the blame. I admitted that I should have questioned more. If council is to be blamed for lack of demanding accountability right now, activists cannot just decide who they want to blame. If there is blame to go around it should be directed at Ford and Bastain also. You can’t just blame Green, Burnette, and Kennedy. That is not fair. That is where I feel Ted is correct, he does not pick and choose, he directs his comments at all of them.
      There are many moving parts and pieces to the PO issue. While activists are pointing fingers at some, the unions are quietly gaining more and more influence. What special interest group will these union candidates be beholden to if they are elected? That is part of the current equation. While I agree some resignations were necessary to move forward, I have to ask why did Shannon Lewis resign, why did Chief Pozzo resign? No one is asking why but that is part of the equation. Why did Councilman Ford say publicly that he would play nice and cooperate with Shannon Lewis if she accepted the interim CM position? Why do city hall employees feel so intimidated? That is part of the equation. Some on this blog don’t see the big picture and the direction of the city. Let’s not only look at one issue but rather the city as a whole. As I have said in the past, why did Bastain and Ford vote to deny tax breaks for senior citizens and then turn around and want to waive $23,000 in fees to a for profit organization from Ormond Beach? To have a pumpkin smashing event we should give away 23k? Does that make sense?
      I have always thought that the city over paid for the funeral home and the Galbreath property down at Riverwalk. But everyone lost money down there, the city, developers and other investors. I don’t know of any special deals for anyone. Yes, I support sharing TIF for that project. The developers at the Pavillion are recouping 25 million for infrastructure there also. That is an additional tax.
      Any financial lapses within city government are inexcusable. That is where accountability should begin. I hope the new CM makes some wholesale changes in the budget and recognizes what departments should lose funding and which departments need additional funding.
      Hank, there are many issues going on right now within city operations and on the council. I do not, personally, see a brighter future. We have an opportunity to elect some new candidates. I hope it turns out for the better. I will support my candidate as I know you will yours. Good luck to everyone. It is what it is. Good health to you and your family.
      Bob Pohlmann

      • August 14, 2014 at 12:15 pm

        Bob, I do agree with everything you just commented on.
        I worry about all financial special interest backing. I am alert to ICI backing and union backing. Perhaps we disagree if on the worry scale they both are equal. thanks for your thoughts Bob.

  • August 11, 2014 at 2:37 pm

    You keep bringing up the city has lost millions.
    Can you provide me with a list:
    Name of vendor/company Amount
    and the amount

    • August 11, 2014 at 5:32 pm

      Onlooker 2 how about we start with the millions lost in revenue from the non read meters and the money spent reinstalling faulty new meters that had already been reinstalled??? That’s a good start.Sounds like you actually like money being taken out of our pocket, unless of course you are one of those “inside city hall” ass kissing employees that don’t even live in the city. Why ask Hank to produce information that’s already been uncovered and made available. Don’t you watch council meetings, the news on TV or read the newspapers?????

    • August 11, 2014 at 6:59 pm

      To onlooker 2.
      I hope a preliminary top of the head list will suffice for you. You can find details about these items on the city web site. I won’t be able to get details for you because I am overwhelmed with dealing with opinions about negative issues in the city of Port Orange government, my morale is low, and I don’t have a paid staff to provide such pubic information. But what I may miss on my list I expect our readers will add to my list.
      1. Bill board advertisement bills were not paid for 2 years.
      2. Tow Company did not pay two years’ worth of permit fees before it went out of business.
      3. Daytona Beach Shores was not billed correctly for water services provided to about 900,000? And then there were the operational and arbitration lawyer’s fees in the attempt to fix the problem.
      4. The cost of city workers and the popd in investigating what may have been criminal.
      5. The cost of city workers and police investigating the stealing of vacation time and the not earned reimbursement to city workers for fraudulent claims that the vacation time was not taken.
      6. The lost revenue because water meters were not working properly and city operations did not realize it when the proper revenue money was not being received.
      7. The cost of city workers doing landscape work because the former lawn service which had done satisfactory work for years previously was forced to quit because of what some think was harassment by city administrators. The reason for the private lawn service quitting can be argued. The city says it cost twice as much for city workers to do the job of landscaping than what a private company can do it for. Others say the true figure is 3 times the cost of a private contractor. The former city manager said “What difference does it make?”
      8. Because of previously poorly worded job proposal requirements no private landscaper has yet to be contracted with, and the higher cost means money lost from not having a private contractor.
      9. The timely loss of money not paid to the city because of dirt being removed from city land. It is true that now a bond is in place, and I hope interest will be paid on the money which will finally be paid to the city by this firm, because for all those months, that money could have been in the city’s bank collecting interest.
      10. The expense in searching for new administrators to replace the many who have suddenly left employment with the city. Some blame Ted Noftall, and if so I think it brings out the fear of being caught up in an accountability issue because of the lack of city manager leadership which has not instituted adequate control procedures in city operational matters.
      11. I think it adds up to millions but if you think not I would be interested in your estimate.

    • August 11, 2014 at 8:32 pm

      Do you have a new Golden Corral Buffet Buddy Yet? Where can I obtain some free Jacksonville Jaguar tickets from? Do you know how to design a sewer system that flows upstream against gravity? Is Ted Noftall a real person with a legitimate identity or is he from the constellation Sirius?

      • August 14, 2014 at 12:17 pm

        yes Stacey I would like that allegation that Ted is using a fictitious name resolvled.
        — hank

    • August 13, 2014 at 9:06 pm

      Hi Frieda do you have any preseason Jaguars tickets?

  • August 11, 2014 at 6:46 pm

    Knows all the Dirt
    How did you come up with millions? (It could be)
    It seems the city received some reimbursement from the vendor who sold the city these meters.
    How many meters were not working? 1,000, 2,000?
    How long was this going on?
    I do not work for the city and calling me names doesn’t change what I ask for.
    Please help me prove out these numbers.

    • August 11, 2014 at 9:06 pm

      just to clarify on looker 2, I hank springer did not call you a name. I had heard estimated 2 million dollars but I will accept any number. In any case, what difference does it make? lol It has been costly and I am not assured that proper controls have yet been put in place.

  • August 11, 2014 at 7:03 pm

    I just read a News Journal article dated January 2013 about an independent audit of the water meters. About 3,500 water meters that were under performing or not working and possible costing the city $2,000,000.

    • August 11, 2014 at 8:40 pm

      Believe me that is extremely conservative. Kisela got his ass out of here in the nick of time. He perpetuated a bad replacement program against the advice of many public utility professionals that can be verified if you research city email streams. These are blacklisted individuals. Remember this post and after 50% of the meters have been replaced before the end of this next year and no significant revenues have been realized compared to Daytona Beach’s 10 to 15% increase, will you still be deifying Greg Kisela and Shannon Lewis? They will be long gone and laughing at you fools. You will be trying to forget having empowered them and defecating on the employees that tried to stop this.

      • August 13, 2014 at 9:23 pm

        Yes, Allen Green eulogized him like he was a demigod. Remember this post when the city finances show little or no revenue change after over 15,000 meters or 50% of all meters have been changed out in next years fiscal financial report. Remember at that time that Daytona Beach realized a 15% revenue increase at the conclusion of their meter replacement program.
        When the data shows that we have failed remember that this meter replacement program should be called the Green Parker Hooper Kisela Shelley Saunders meter replacement program. This program was a total rejection of our current public utility technical professionals talent in favor of what Ken Parker Greg Kisela Ken Hooper John Shelley and Wayne Saunders determined all backed by Allen Green.
        Remember this next year when the data bears this out and Kisela is in Destin, Hooper, Shelley, & Parker are retired, Saunders is wherever, and Green has one more year in office. You can then have a short memory and eulogize the rest as Port Orange demogods. Until then just stick your head in the sand like good political ostriches and keep on catching a falling knife.

        • August 13, 2014 at 10:21 pm

          Hey after Parker silenced the public utility technical staff that opposed the premature jump into the current meter replacement program and assembled his meter dream team a couple of years ago wasn’t that team composed of Ken Parker – retired in shame, Roger Smith – forced to resign, John Diamond, forced to resign, Shannon Lewis – clueless & recently conveniently resigning, her children’s godfather Ken Hooper – affiliated with Sensus Meter Company, and John Shelley – forced to resign in shame.
          The same program was continued with no changes by Greg Kisela – resigned and ran for the hills, Wayne Saunders – resigned and ran for the hills, Shannon Lewis – conveniently resigned, Jason Yarborough – forced to resign, and the still remaining interim public utilities director who was in from it’s inception – assigned by Greg Kisela, need we say more?
          Oh wait, who has been the Public Utilities Engineering support? Need we say more? Millions of dollars of tax payers money spent over the last couple of years and zero revenue increase. Need we say more? Large meters installed with improper installation profiles, need we say more?
          All of this temporarily forgotten and unaddressed because of the newest crisis, need we say more? Remember what the great essayist and philosopher George Santayana has said,” Those that do not learn from history are doomed to repeat their mistakes”.
          Thank you Allen Green! Thank you Don Burnette! Thank you Dennis Kennedy! Thank you Ken Parker! Thank you Greg Kisela! Thank you Roger Smith! Thank you Jason Yarborough! Thank you Ken Hooper! Need we say more?

          • August 14, 2014 at 7:19 pm

            I hope they memorialize your post because I think that you are foretelling the future accurately. I think you hit the nail on the head. I suppose next fiscal year after millions of taxpayer dollars have been expended and there are still no revenue increase the mayor can celebrate by taking the council out for some hot wings. Need we say more!

  • August 11, 2014 at 8:06 pm

    Don’t forget money wasted on the reclaimed lakes, reclaimed augmentation ponds and filter at the reclaimed plant. Plus years of payroll wasted on poor managers and other supposed professional employees. Poor project management, Onlooker 2 is not very observant. Selective eyesight. Surprise! Surprise!

    • August 11, 2014 at 10:01 pm

      We can thank Allen Green, Don Burnette, and Dennis Kennedy for this shit, and I fear that on Tuesday night they will not take the advice of the renowned essayist and philosopher George Santayana who said that, “them that do not learn from history are doomed to repeat their mistakes”. Unfortunately the tax payers and citizens of Port Orange will ultimately pay the price. Those three clowns will pat each other on the back with the assent of Bob Pohlmann and never take responsibility.

      • August 12, 2014 at 7:51 pm

        Hello Floki. I can assure you there is no one on council that needs approval or affirmation from me. Most would just hope I will fade away, and that is fine. I am just offering my take on things as they exist today. They are just opinions such as yours. I am following the events like you. Thanks for reading them. Good health to you and your family.
        P.S. Looking forward to season three next year. I believe you are too.
        Bob Pohlmann

        • August 13, 2014 at 8:23 pm

          Hey Bob, I am assuming that Hank has alluded that you may be a secular humanist and a liberal who has opportunistically used a profoundly spiritual teaching in the verse” let him that is without sin cast the first stone” without truly understanding the import of the teaching. If you are a secular humanist and a left wing liberal I certainly understand where you would have a difficult time understanding a transcendent spiritual teaching that can only be approached by higher mind.
          I will share another teaching for your contemplation. Perhaps if you meditate on the following teaching you may have a transcendent epiphany:
          For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;

          • August 14, 2014 at 12:34 pm

            Stacey, I guess Bob will answer you. bob had told me that he is not too keen on religion. Neither am I. For the record I am an agnostic. I once served on the board of the N.E.Florida Humanist Association. I left that board when my conservative social views clashed with Humanist Doctrine. I was told that my views on resolving problems of the poor were non compassionate and were in conflict with at that time the Humanist Manifesto declared in 4 places, of reasoning with compassion. I admitted that I had been trying to avoid that unsettling principle of reasoning. To the best of my ability I try to reason objectively. I suggested that no humanist should be allowed to serve as a jurist in a trial if that humanist believed in reasoning with compassion. I quit the Humanist Organization because I did not agree with its principle of reasoning with compassion. I guess I am just a mean S.O.B. — lol hank

          • August 14, 2014 at 6:21 pm

            That is fine Hank because we are what we are. I am not religious either. I am not an agnostic as yourself though, I am a gnostic.so to speak. Someone that is of the esoteric persuasion that believes in intelligent design and the emanation of everything from The All Encompassing.

  • August 11, 2014 at 10:04 pm

    Exact dollar amount ?
    We don’t know what we don’t know ( and may never know)

  • August 12, 2014 at 10:05 pm

    Some of the numbers of loss and errors are well documented, and some are not so definitively known. However, in the past two years it is clear that the number far exceeds $2,000,000! The water billing fiasco with DBSHRS, Public Utility employees double dipping in their sick and vacation time, failure to collect from the wrecker contract for 29 months, 4,000 faulty water meters, the landscape maintenance mess and failed bids, attorney costs, legal hearings, gets us to $2 mil easy!

    • August 13, 2014 at 4:09 pm

      Thus, when a tax increased is proposed, we need to yell loudly.
      We are paying for their fiscal ignorance.
      Are you listening Don Burnette ?

      • August 14, 2014 at 12:36 pm

        I think that substantially raising taxes will be held off until Green leaves office. Like Kisela, I don’t think we will ever be free from Green’s influence. — hank


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