Candidate Guest Commentary Reply

Editors note: All seven candidates for the Vero Beach City Council were invited to submit guest columns to InsideVero.  Candidates Brian Heady, Jay Kramer, Randy Old and Jack Shupe accepted our invitation.  Their columns, which appear below, will also be published in the print edition of InsideVero to be out Oct. 30. More…

FPL enters City Council election fray with $9,000 contribution to local PAC 4

Promising 30% savings on electric bills, corporate money funding misleading campaign to elect Howle, Turner, Wilson
Though the current rate differential between Vero Electric and FPL is 17 percent, the latest political mailer paid for by the Alliance for Better Florida Communities claimed a "30% savings" would result from a sale to FPL.

Though the current rate differential between Vero Electric and FPL is 20 percent, the latest political mailer paid for by the Alliance for Better Florida Communities claims a “30% savings” would result from a sale to FPL. Accounting for a franchise fee, the rate differential would be 15 percent. It is also misleading to claim Vero Beach has, “some of the highest electric rates in the sate of Florida.” In truth, Vero Electric’s rates are will below the average of investor owned utility, and close to the statewide average for municipal utilities.

Alliance post card 2

Alliance Post Card 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MARK SCHUMANN

Do date, Florida Power and Light has of the $18,000 raised by a political group supporting Harry Howle, III, Pilar Turner and Charlie Wilson.

To date, Florida Power and Light has given half of the $18,000 raised by a political group supporting Harry Howle, III, Pilar Turner and Charlie Wilson.

After investing some $125,000 in the spring of 2013 to persuade Vero Beach voters to sell their electric system, and after spending more than $40,000 last fall in a failed effort to re-elect Tracy Carroll, Florida Power & Light has now given half of the $18,000 raised by an electioneering communications organization supporting Harry Howle, III, Pilar Turner and Charlie Wilson.

The group, Alliance For Better Florida Communities, paid for an earlier post card urging voters to support Howle and Turner.  Their latest mailer, though, includes Wilson. More…

The anatomy of a Charlie Wilson lie Reply

COMMENTARY

MARK SCHUMANN

truth squad

Vero Beach City Council candidate, Charlie Wilson, is a master at telling half truths and lies.  For example, he continues to claim I once “called a Christian group a hate group.”  Wilson’s claim is simply not true, and he knows it.

In covering the 2013 controversy caused when then Mayor Craig Fletcher and then Vice Mayor Tracy Carroll refused to sign a proclamation recognizing “Humanist Week,” InsideVero reported that local humanists had previously objected to another group’s sponsorship of Christian Heritage Week.  The humanists were opposed to the American Family Association’s involvement in Christian Heritage Week, they said, because the group had been identified by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a hate group.

Wilson, ever the twister of the truth, ignores the fact that there was no way to fully and fairly report the background of the story without explaining the reason one group gave for objecting to another. More…

82% of Wilson’s campaign cash given by out-of-city contributors 2

All Aboard Florida communications consultant contributed to Wilson’s campaign

MARK SCHUMANN

Charlie Wilson

Charlie Wilson

Among the several Vero Beach city council candidates drawing heavily on out-of-city contributors, Charlie Wilson leads the way.  According to Wilson’s latest financial report filed with the City Clerk’s office, from Oct. 4 through Oct. 17 Wilson received 92 percent of his campaign cash from outside the city.

To date, Wilson has raised $5,000 in cash, $4,120 of it from individual and business contributors with addresses outside Vero Beach, including a contribution from a Tallahassee-based communications consultant working for All Aboard Florida.

The Alliance for Better Florida Communities, an electioneering communication organization based in Vero Beach and formed in Sept. of this year, is supporting Wilson has one of its three endorsees.  To date, the group has received $9,000 from Florida Power & Light.  Much of the group’s remaining contributions came from citrus growers and citrus packing companies.  The George E Warren Corporation gave the political group $5,000. More…

Baseball championship and Jake Owen concert this weekend at Historic Dodgertown Reply

NEWS RELEASE

Dodgertown LogoHistoric Dodgertown and Indian River County feature a full lineup this weekend, as they are set to host both the Baseball Youth Fall Championship youth baseball tournament and the eighth annual Jake Owen Benefit Concert.

The Baseball Youth Fall Championship, sponsored by Treasure Coast Sports Commission, will include more than 50 teams, separated into 10U, 11U, 12U, 13U and 14U age divisions. Games will be held at Historic Dodgertown, Vero Beach High School, and North and South County regional parks. More…

A lot of monkey business going on Reply

BEA GARDNER

This is the  Headline I just read in the IRNA Newsletter

AAF Impacts Threaten Entire Community, IRNA takes active role

 “Earlier this year the IRNA brought together a Train Impact Coalition (TIC) to help a vulnerable community fight the potential impact of expanded freight service along with high speed passenger trains proposed by the powerful All Aboard Florida and her parent company, Fortress.” MORE…

Charlie Wilson posts more misinformation on his Facebook page 3

MARK SCHUMANN

Charlie Wilson

Charlie Wilson

Vero Beach City Council candidate, Charlie Wilson, was at it again today posting false accusations and misinformation on his Facebook page.

Wilson continues to attack Dian George, the Vero Beach resident who took him to court in 2009 for failing to meet residency requirements for city council candidates.  As a result of George’s lawsuit, Wilson was removed from office.

More recently, George filed a complaint with the Florida Elections Commission, charging that Wilson again failed to meet the residency requirements for city council candidates.  As late as last week, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement was still investigating the facts surrounding George’s complaint that Wilson may have committed voter fraud by changing the address with the Supervisor of Elections’ office before he was legally residing at his 18th Avenue address.  The fact are not clear, but Wilson signed a six month lease on a $500-a-month apartment on an 18th Avenue and moved into the apartment near the deadline to be met in order to qualify as a city council candidate.   More…

Changing of the guard at IRSC’s Mueller Center Reply

MILT THOMAS

David Sullivan

David Sullivan

Casey Lunceford

Casey Lunceford

Dr. David Sullivan, who has served as provost at the Indian River State College Mueller Center in Vero Beach, has retired after 18 years at the helm. Anyone who lived here 18 years ago is familiar with the monumental growth that has occurred on that campus. Sullivan has had his hand in virtually all that growth and every other change in that period of time. “When I came here, people wanted to know why we put this campus in the middle of nowhere. Now it is the heart of everything.” More…

District Two County Commissioner race: Where the candidates stand 1

MILT THOMAS

Althea McKenzie

Althea McKenzie

 Joe Flescher

Joe Flescher

This is the only contest involving a seat on the Board of County Commissioners. The two candidates are incumbent Joe Flescher and challenger Althea McKenzie. They were both asked for their positions on the key issues facing voters countywide and in the district, which encompasses primarily northern Indian River County.

1. Oslo Road Boat Ramp (this issue was taken off the table at the October 21 County Commission meeting, where a decision was postponed for three to five years. McKenzie was interviewed before that date but Flescher’s position was unclear until the actual vote) More…

Obituaries: October 23, 2014 Reply

JEFF BARTON, who retired from the Indian River Clerk of Court in 2012, passed away on Saturday, October 18, 2014. Jeff began his career teaching college and working in the banking industry and moved to Indian River County in 1970 from Palm Beach County. Jeff served on the City of Vero Beach Council from December 1980 until March 1984, ARC board from August 1991 until August 1999 (including Chairman from 1998-1999), American Cancer Society Board from October 1999 until present, Florida Association of Court Clerks Service Corporation Board from November 1993 until June 2006 (including Vice Chairman and Chairman positions), Clerk of Court Operations Corporation as Secretary and Treasurer from July 2006 through June 2008, Florida Local Government Investment Trust as Vice Chairman and Chairman from September 2005 through September 2011, Florida League of Cities Insurance Fund Trustee from 1981 to 1983. More…

Vero’s legacy is in your hands on November 4 1

COMMENTARY

MILT THOMAS

Crestlawn Cemetery

Crestlawn Cemetery

When is a park more than a play area and an expanse of grass? When is a cemetery the legacy of a community?

There are questions Vero Beach voters will be asking themselves when they go to the polls November 4 or sooner. The ordinance in question will protect the city’s landmark properties from the whims of a three-person majority on City Council. Chief among the properties that would be protected under City Charter is Crestlawn Cemetery. This is only on the ballot because of an effort by two City Councilmen to put it up for sale this past year. The election of one more like-minded candidate could spell the end to one of Vero Beach’s treasured legacies, where many of the pioneer families who made our community what it is today are buried, and it would be lost strictly for the sake of profit. More…

Beachside parking issue addressed by City Council 2

Stricter enforcement to begin Nov. 8

MILT THOMAS

In a rare 2-2 vote, Vero Beach City Council has let stand the decision a year ago allowing Mulligan’s Beach House restaurant at Sexton Plaza to add 28 outdoor seats without additional parking spaces. Since its initial approval, the move has sparked complaints from other beachside businesses. A three-vote majority is necessary to overturn the previous ruling but Councilwoman Pilar Turner left the meeting before the vote was taken. Council members Kramer and Graves supported allowing the additional parking decision to stand. Winger and Fletcher opposed. More…

Vote is not just a four-letter word 2

Vote 2COMMENTARY

MILT THOMAS

Somewhere between the youngest and oldest generation of registered voters is a serious misunderstanding of what it means to vote. The oldest generation probably fought in a war where our very survival as a nation was at stake. Sacrifice meant giving up your life so future generations could live in freedom rather than tyranny. They probably also lived through some part of the Great Depression where up to 25 percent of Americans were out of work. Sacrifice then meant not paying your rent so you could afford to feed your family another day. More…

Commission postpones Oslo Road boat ramp 3-5 years 3

Commission votes to postpone work on Oslo Road Boat Ramp 3-5 years

Commission votes to postpone work on Oslo Road Boat Ramp 3-5 years

MILT THOMAS

The Indian River County Commission voted 3-2 to postpone enhancements to the Oslo Road Boat Ramp for three to five years much to the delight of the nearly packed house. The motion to postpone it had been forwarded by Commissioner Solari at the last meeting but discussion postponed until today. Commissioners Flescher and Zorc joined Solari in voting to postpone, Commissioners O’Bryan and Davis opposed it. Davis suggested taking out the asphalt road from the project as the only change needed. O’Bryan cited a number of references before concluding that “the benefits greatly outweigh the disadvantages.”

Earlier, during a final public input, citizen Gail Norris asked, “Why postpone it. It should be laid to rest permanently.”

Commissioner Solari said by delaying it three to five years would effectively kill it, but added that we should know much more about the lagoon and its problems by then to better evaluate the damage if any.

Commissioner Flescher had kept his position quiet until today’s meeting and was the first to speak in favor of the delay.

Charlie Wilson wrong on campaign sign law 4

COMMENTARY

Anybody But Charlie

Turn Off Turner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MARK SCHUMANN

Though Charlie Wilson’s Facebook rantings hardly make for the top news story of the day, perhaps readers should be aware of his antics. After all, Wilson is a candidate for the Vero Beach City Council and he does aspire to “serve” as Mayor of Vero Beach.

This weekend, Wilson criticized InsideVero for not reporting what he claimed was a certain campaign violation.  That Wilson could make such a claim without first checking the facts could explain why he is no longer in the news business. More…

It isn’t “just a movie” 2

COMMENTARY

MILT THOMAS

Last Saturday my wife and I decided to go see a movie, Gone Girl, with Ben Affleck, which spent two weeks as the number one movie in the land, a fairly good barometer of audience approval. We like to go to the movies, usually, to suspend disbelief for a few hours, become involved in the story on the screen and forget everything else going on in our lives.

Somehow, there are always reminders of real life though. A patron didn’t turn off his cellphone as he should, or you can hear rain on the theater roof, or someone starts gasping loudly for air several rows behind you. That’s what happened last Saturday night. People around him started shouting to turn up the lights. Someone called 911. A policeman appeared and said the man wasn’t breathing, so he moved him to the floor and began chest compressions. The lights went up, the movie stopped as the real life drama went on. Patrons were asked to leave, since by now the few people in the theater were standing in shocked silence witnessing attempts to save his life. More…