Palm Bay: The Petitions.

EDITOR’S NOTE: As we started to work in this post, the more we realized how screwed up what is going on truly is. The initial focus of the post took a turn away from its original destination of “the petitions and the end game is on the agenda” to “what in the Wide Wide World of Sports is a-goin’ on here?”

Tonight at 7:00 PM the City Council of Palm Bay will hold a regular meeting starting at 7:00 PM.

The agenda for the meeting can be found here.

There are two items of interest to us on the agenda and both are related:

11. Consideration of a moratorium on special assessments and placement of language presented by the Citizens of Palm Bay Petition Committee on the ballot for the November 2020 general election. (Mayor Capote)

12. Consideration of the appointment of a Charter Review Commission. (Mayor Capote)

We talked in great length about the petition drive in a post called “A Tale of Two Petitions.”

To re-cap, citizens in Palm Bay wanted to repeal (or revert) an amendment to the City Charter that was passed in 2016. The residents claim that the change was passed due to mis-information from the City and a lack of understanding as to amounts they could be charged for roads and infrastructures in front of their property. The special assessments as approved often ended up taxing people more than the values of their properties in order to build the infrastructure the property owners had been promised for years.

(Because we want to be transparent about this, we supported the idea behind the petition group but felt the wording of the petition and the proposed ballot language was lacking small details. We discussed that here. Our stance on the petition drive was therefore neutral.)

The petition group plowed ahead, got the requisite numbers of signatures to have the issue on the ballot and turned them into the City. The City took the petitions to the Brevard County Supervisor of Elections for signature verification. The petitions were rejected en masse for failure to have a spot for the signer to put in their date of birth and or their voter registration ID number.

Keep Digging.

In response to our post yesterday on Brevard County Commissioner Bryan Lober and his lack of fact checking, his lack of “due diligence,” and his apparent belief that those who exercise their Constitutional rights are acting in a “cowardly” manner, a commenter quoted the famous line from Will Rogers, “when you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.

It is a lesson that is lost on Lober.

After his screed claiming that a citizen would not be able to avail themselves of the County Attorney when it comes to questions on the Sunshine Laws and whether people in the government are following those laws, Maureen Rupe sent this email to County Manager Frank Abbate and “cc’ed” the County Commissioners:

(click image for larger version in a new window.)

In his previous responses to Rupe, Lober had left the door wide open for the confusion and a need for clarification.

Commissioner Bryan Lober: Due Diligence Fail.

In our post yesterday concerning the loathsome comments made by Brevard County Commissioner Bryan Lober, there were several things that struck a chord with us.

Lober claimed he had done his “due diligence” when it came to checking the activities of Maureen Rupe, saying:

Apologies, after the fact, will not be sufficient as my due diligence has revealed that you may have a history of making unreasonable public records requests and you may have a history of complaining about not receiving what you have no lawful right to inspect. (emphasis ours)

(We won’t get into how childish appears to us that a public official would accept an apology (if warranted) from a citizen of Brevard County. That’s a post for another day.)

Later in his email to Rupe, Lober wrote:

I am putting you on notice that I vigorously pursue all lawful remedies against those who publicly defame me and I have no qualms making public examples of those who are imprudent enough to do so. While you are welcome to say what you’d like, I strongly advise you to fact check any disparaging comments you may otherwise consider publishing. (emphasis ours)

Yesterday afternoon, Lober went on FaceBook and accused a person of writing the post:

Commissioner Bryan Lober Should A) Apologize B) Be Censured C) Resign. Pick Two.

Maureen Rupe is probably best described as a citizen volunteer and activist. She serves on many boards including a hospital board in Brevard County. She is also an self-described avowed socialist and we disagree with her on almost everything.

During the County Commission meeting on January 22, 2019 concerning the dissolution of the Children’s Services Council (CSC,) Commissioner Bryan Lober said that he had gotten many emails and phone called that were largely in favor of voting to dissolve the CSC.

Rupe decided to test that theory and made a public records request under Florida Statute 119, also known as the “Sunshine Law” for Lober’s phone records and who was for or against the CSC in those conversations.

Lober responded to the request with this:

Please find below records from my cell that may pertain, even if only in part, to the CSC. The records may well be overly inclusive as I do not recall the nature of each and every call. Again, these are from my cell phone. I will request that [District 2 Administrative Assistant] Kika check the call log, in the office, to see if it is notated which particular calls pertained to the CSC. It is unlikely that all calls pertaining to the CSC were notated as quite a few were in favor of dissolution without any particularly noteworthy or unique commentary.

Rupe responded with an email to County Attorney Eden Bentley:

Someone Has Way Too Much Time On Their Hands.

For some reason this just made us laugh. Someone actually counted the number of missed shots by stormtroopers in the escape sequences from the Death Star in the original Star Wars film, which is Star Wars IV, which is Star Wars “A New Hope.”

We have to admire their tenacity though. We can only imaging huddling over a video screen counting shots, verifying the, “was that one or two?” etc.

Stormtroopers are the intimidating enforcers of the Empire. When Luke Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Han Solo, Chewbacca, R2-D2, and C-3PO came to the Death Star and rescued Princess Leia, these armored soldiers were quickly dispatched to stop their escape. Find out how many times stormtroopers fired blaster shots as the rebels looked to flee the battle station!

Still, watching all of the scenes did remind of all the fun we had watching the original Star Wars in the theater, how good it was, and how it has withstood the test of time.

Democrat Privilege.

Courtesy AF Branco at Comically Incorrect:

Democrats and the mainstream media were willing to throw away “due process” in order to believe all women during the Kavanaugh hearing, but have a much different attitude regarding the Fairfax accusations.

The Democrats have also hoped the allegations of domestic abuse against Minnesota Democrat Representative Keith Ellison would go away, but they are not.

The Democrats have a real issue with their attacks against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh by a woman “must be believed” and then saying in Virginia and Minnesota, “nothing to see here, move along…” and basically accuse the alleged victims of lying without any investigation.

However, to be fair, both parties play the same game. When it is the “other party,” you attack. When it is “your party,” you defend, hide and obfuscate.

Palm Bay: Freudian Slip?

A “Freudian slip” is defined as:

a slip of the tongue that is motivated by and reveals some unconscious aspect of the mind

Wikipedia says:

A Freudian slip, also called parapraxis, is an error in speech, memory, or physical action that occurs due to the interference of an unconscious subdued wish or internal train of thought. The concept is part of classical psychoanalysis. Classical examples involve slips of the tongue, but psychoanalytic theory also embraces misreadings, mishearings, temporary forgettings, and the mislaying and losing of objects.

The reason we are talking about this is that during the comments on the Waste Management contract at the Palm Bay City Council meeting of February 7, 2019, Councilman Santiago makes this statement which can be found on page 5 of our transcript:

Our Controversial Valentine’s Day Stance.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Today is Valentine’s Day.

Each year we trot out a post similar to this and each year, we get slammed for it. So be it.

Today is the day.

The worst holiday known to mankind is here: Valentine’s Day.

It is not that we think the idea of love and romance is a bad thing. We are all for it. (Nice to know, eh?)

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:13 (NIV)

But here’s the thing. Here is why we hate Valentine’s Day so much.

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