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Palm Coast Wednesday, Jul. 29, 2020 1 week ago

6 letters: On Mayor Holland, Palm Coast politics, and Flagler's dune project

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Two candidates for mayor make their case.
by: Guest Writer

Send letters to [email protected].

Holland’s tax lie is dangerous

Dear Editor:

Milissa Holland participated in FlaglerLive’s candidate interviews and said that keeping taxes low was one of her top priorities. This is nothing new for a politician — it is literally what every single politician is taught to say — but what did catch my eye was this phrase: “I have not raised taxes in my entire term of office,” Holland said.

That is untrue. In fact, it is nowhere near true. In fact, the interviewer challenged her, calling it “categorically inaccurate.” The truth is that by Florida law, Palm Coast taxes have gone up every single year Holland has been in office.

Taxes are a function of the millage rate and property values. Each year, the state of Florida publishes what they call the “rollback rate,” which is the millage rate at which tax revenue would stay level in the face of rising property values. Not only has Holland failed to adopt that rollback rate (which means, by definition, she has raised taxes) but the millage rate itself has also gone up multiple times since she took office, so there is no semantic game — it’s just a lie.

Holland also had a misstatement about Palm Coast’s debt, claiming there is no municipal debt, even though the city carries $170 million in debt. It is true that the general fund has no debt, but to ignore $170 million seems to be either an extreme oversight or yet another lie.

The first budget Holland approved was the FY2018, which had a bottom line of total expenditures at $133.3 million. The most recent budget (FY2020) sits at $187 million. That’s an increase of 40%!

Her entire term as mayor has been tax-and-waste. She cannot pretend to be fiscally responsible now. The city of Palm Coast cannot afford another four years of the same.

Michael Schottey

Palm Coast

Editor’s Note: Schottey is running for Palm Coast mayor.

 

Election Guide is truly a public service

Dear Editor:

First, let me thank the Palm Coast Observer for publishing such a complete and helpful catalog of candidates running for office in Flagler County. Truly a public service.

I’d like to address the mayoral candidates and their listed priorities. Of those that listed priorities (one listed none), three of them fell into the useless aphorisms such as “responsible growth,” “quality of life,” “strengthen local economy.” Only one candidate laid down priorities that a resident could actually relate to and — hallelujah — swales led that list!

In the 17 years I’ve lived in Palm Coast, absolutely nothing has been done on my street to remediate the inadequate drainage. Yet, in that time, my utility bill has increased by 41%. No idea where that revenue has gone, but certainly not into swale fixing. So, Mr. Greene, I hope this isn’t just one of those “campaign promises.”

Shirley Carter

Palm Coast

 

Don’t blame Publix for COVID-19

Dear Editor:

I think Mayor Milissa Holland was way off when she had the nerve to blame Publix for her friend getting COVID-19. You have no proof of this, so don't say it. We come in contact with more people than we realize in a day. Be smart, stay inside, but let's not live in fear of going to Publix because of this case. Please apologize to our local Publix.

Candace Monroe 

Palm Coast

 

Holland makes unsubstantiated claim

Dear Editor:

Last week, in a story published by the Palm Coast Observer, Mayor Milissa Holland attacked one of the largest employers in our city, Publix, with an unsubstantiated claim insinuating that her friend got COVID-19 while at Publix.

There was no evidence whatsoever to support her accusation, yet there she was once again attacking another business in Palm Coast, just like she did to Dollar General. Recently released emails from the mayor make it crystal clear to all that the only business Ms. Holland is friendly to is her private employer, Coastal Cloud.

As our local businesses struggle to recover from COVID-19, the last thing we need is Holland making unverifiable accusations damaging the reputation of a fine upstanding business like Publix.

Alan Lowe

Palm Coast

Editor’s Note: Lowe is a candidate for mayor of Palm Coast. Also, Holland stated during the July 16 City Council meeting that when the friend tested positive, “They asked her where she had been, especially in the last three days, because to test that high you’d have to actually come in contact with someone that would have transmitted it in that time period. The only place she had been, with her children in the last three days, was Publix. And she got it at Publix, and her two children tested positive.” Holland said she’d been to Publix herself over the weekend, and only noticed one person not wearing a mask. “There was tremendous compliance with this, so thank you to our residents,” she said.

 

Vote out the mayor and City Council

Dear Editor:

What's going on at City Hall? Why is everybody leaving or getting fired? The mayor has lost control of the city! The lies, cover ups, and the city employees’ morale is at an all-time low. We must hold the mayor responsible.

Her biggest accomplishment, as our mayor, is a dog park, which took too long and cost too much to finish! Her lack of leadership has hurt our city! Investigations into her ethics are overwhelming. She's just way in over her head. There's no light at the end of this tunnel.

The new city manager rubber-stamps everything she wants. Some council members do the same. The voice of reason has retired, due to health issues. He will be missed!

Now they look to stack the deck with another rubber-stamper! This administration is corrupt to the core! I call on the mayor to resign! The hole she has dug is impossible for her to climb out of!

Wake up, Palm Coasters. Let’s start fresh. Vote them out before they bankrupt the city. They have already cost us taxpayers $430,000 in severance packages, thanks to our mayor, and a toxic City Hall!

Dennis C. Rathsam

Palm Coast

 

Use eminent domain for dune project

Dear Editor:

I saw the devastating pictures of the dune area along State Road A1A in your paper on July 16, and I was baffled that the owners would not let the Army Corps of Engineers replace the washed-away dunes in front of their property.

Now I am rarely fond of eminent domain, but steps should be taken. I suggest attorneys contact the property owners’ insurance companies and relate the details to them. They might be inclined to put a little pressure on their clients!

(As I understand it, giving permission to renew the dunes does not alter ownership of the property.)

Carol Propper

Palm Coast

Send letters to [email protected].

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