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Opinion
Palm Coast Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2018 10 months ago

Why these Palm Coast readers oppose Jon Netts, Dennis McDonald, Joe Mullins

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Meanwhile, readers support John Fischer for School Board and Greg Hansen for County Commission.
by: Guest Writer

Jon Netts already had his chance

Dear Editor:

Jon Netts is asking the voters of Palm Coast for yet another opportunity to represent us on the City Council. I can think of many reasons to keep Jon Netts retired.

1) As mayor, he was the leader with sticking us with the much-hated red light cameras which sent hundreds of thousands of dollars out of our pockets (and our city) to entities out of the area and state.

2) After the citizens rejected funds for a new City Hall, Mr. Netts led the charge to ignore our wishes and got it built anyway. Just think what we could be using that money for now, such as a new Public Works facility.

3) The need for a new Public Works facility has been known to some in local government for years, yet it only became an “emergency” after the city sent millions of a new City Hall and Community Center.

4) Under Mr. Netts’ leadership, the city gave Centex a sweetheart deal to takeover a neglected Palm Harbor Golf Course, while allowing Centex to keep the rights to build 200+ condos on golf course land. We were promised that if we put a load of money into the golf course, it would then pay for itself and be a big plus for the community. Instead, the taxpayers continue to be stuck with bills for the golf course every year with no end in sight.

5) The city tennis center was another facility built by taxpayers with the promise that it would fund its own operations. Again the taxpayers are stuck. Meanwhile there was (and still is) a once beautiful tennis facility near the Palm Harbor Golf Course that could be renovated.

6) Palm Coast has the worst traffic management in the Volusia/Flagler area. In fact, this may be the single worst feature of our city. Under Mr. Netts’ leadership, this problem continued to be neglected, possibly to increase the booty the city got from the hated red light camera scheme.

7) The Holland Park renovation took much longer and more money to complete while Mr. Netts was mayor.

I could go on by why, oh why, would the good citizens of Palm Coast possibly want this gentlemen back on the City Council?

Mike McGuire

Palm Coast

 

Dennis McDonald’s history of ‘negativity’

Dear Editor:

I was amused to read your reasoning for Greg Hansen over Dennis McDonald for County Commission. While I agree that Mr. Hansen is the better man for the job, I quite frankly don’t feel your statement that Mr. McDonald “has been a negative voice in the community for years” goes quite far enough.

Dennis McDonald’s history of “frivolous lawsuits” and attempts to sue both the city of Palm Coast and Flagler County should have been mentioned, although I realize it would have taken up quite a bit of space.

The short version includes two suits for falling on city property. The pending suit was filed three months after an appeals court ordered Mr. McDonald to pay $60,000 in fees due to another suit filed by McDonald against the county about ethics complaints. The court found that not only were these complaints frivolous, but malicious as well.

In another lawsuit deemed frivolous by the court, Mr. McDonald sued the city over tree removal from a site for the Island Walk shopping center. A judge declared that not only was the suit without merit, but also that Mr. McDonald and his attorney should have known better. Each were ordered to pay legal fees along with interest, which the attorney did. Mr. McDonald, however, objected. He eventually paid the fees, but the total cost to the city was $26,268 due to the extended cost incurred by the city for legal fees due to his objection. The city recovered about $14,000.

Mr. Hansen’s good qualities would be as lengthy if not more so than Mr. McDonald’s faults to list. I have been politically involved, behind the scenes, since moving here. I know what kind of man and what kind of county commissioner Greg is, and it’s all good news!

Every race is important. The way to good government is to start at the local level.

James Thomas

Palm Coast

 

Endorsement of Joe Mullins is troubling

Dear Editor:

Besides being the guy with the most campaign signs and the most money to finance his District 4 County Commission campaign, Joe Mullins is well known as having a questionable past.

The Palm Coast Observer has previously referred to him as a “problematic candidate.” The Observer and FlaglerLive have detailed a sordid history of deception, cover-ups, questionable business activities, apparent campaign finance violations and even a credible revenge porn claim. His business has also been sued in Georgia, accused of engineering a large-dollar ticket-scalping scheme involving a Masters golf tournament event.

He also has acknowledged previously possessing driver’s licenses from different states apparently to establish residency where it suited his needs. It now appears that Mr. Mullins is playing the residency game again.

Keep in mind that Mullins has declared a net worth of over $31 million. About two months before he filed his financial disclosure forms as a candidate for District 4, he purchased a 1,236-square-foot older house in Bunnell for $130,000. This is the house he will have to claim as his residence to qualify as commissioner in that district if elected.

Do we really believe Joe Mullins, with his huge net worth, huge income and being accustomed to penthouse living intends this small, modest Bunnell house to be his new residence?

Given what we know about him, it’s perplexing that the Observer would endorse Mullins. But, it is clear that character was not a consideration in that decision.

Robert Gordon

Palm Coast

Editor's Note: Joe Mullins responded to the residency challenge this way in an email to the Palm Coast Observer: "My residence is at my Bunnell house. Bunnell is a gem in our community, so much history and I intend to give District 4 representation that they have never seen before."

A man of faith and values, John Fischer listens

Dear Editor:

In a time when the moral compass of all politicians seems to be questioned, John Fischer is a man above reproach! His dedication to the children of this community and the school system that educates them is unparalleled.

He is a man of exceptional values and faith. He does something many of our political leaders have forgotten to do: listen!

I have been honored to know John for over six years. I have worked closely with him in the Knights of Columbus. The Energizer Bunny would need three battery changes if he followed John around in a single day.

When you go to the polls this time, please vote for John, because truth, honor and a wonderful mentor will be back on the side of our children and a beacon for our school system.

Kevin J. Ryan

Palm Coast

 

Fischer is more than just a nice guy

Dear Editor:

In the letters of endorsement that the paper has received regarding John Fischer, none have mentioned any of his accomplishments. He’s been called a good man, and, although this is certainly true, that by itself is not a reason to elect someone.

Fischer is not just a nice guy; he is a fiscal conservative who managed to save the district thousands of dollars by suggesting that the district eliminate unnecessary Blackberry devices for administrators and by creating satellite bus parking areas instead of having all the buses return to one central location, both of which the board approved.

Fischer has also been able to make tough decisions. He determined that although potentially risky, moving the district to being self-insured would be the best way to go and in the end, it proved to be the right decision. He was also responsible for the institution of the Employee Assistance Program which has helped many staff members over the years.

Yes, Fischer is a nice guy. But beyond that, he’s a man who’s always looking for creative ways to save money for the district. He will know what the students and staff need because he will be in the buildings on a constant basis seeking out their opinions and listening to their concerns. He will do his due diligence and do what’s best for the students. That’s why you should vote for John Fischer.

Kim Gridley

Flagler Beach

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