Politics Evers files Consolidation Bill March 2, 2009 It’s HB 1431. Read it here . Share this:TwitterFacebookEmailPrintMoreGoogleLinkedInTumblrPinterest Related ConsolidationGreg Evers 4 Comments Anony March 3, 2009 at 11:43 am I alternately shake my head in disbelief, and ROFL when I think of Escambia county and Jacksonville being discussed as though there are comparable. http://www.citytowninfo.com/places/florida/jacksonville When you get down to ‘seasonal and vacation housing’ pause and consider that mos folks, by far, are local residents who pay sales taxes year round. That matters. Hope March 3, 2009 at 7:35 am I hate to be negative but I can’t remember anything good happening to Pensacola politics in a long time. Well, take that back. Maybe the ousting of several good ol boys on the city council. Everytime I think things are going to change they just stay the same. Maybe I just need another cup of coffee to brighten my forecast. Dare I hope for consolidation? Don’t know that I can stand another disappointment. C. J. Lewis March 2, 2009 at 8:41 pm The “divvying up” part was done in the dark “after” Escambia County, City of Pensacola and Town of Century had issued resolutions in support of “a study.” [The Town of Century later withdrew their support.] The bill drafted by Escambia All For One for Representive Evers to submit to the legislature failed to include the agreed upon key provision that the City of Pensacola and Town of Century voters could “opt out” of the new consolidated government. Representative Evers has since corrected that oversight. Representative Evers said on Thursday that he is open to modifying the smorgasbord list of non-governmental groups that want a seat on their own Commission. The bill isn’t final until it’s approved by the legislature. I presume the Commission will be meeting Monday through Friday of each week during July to November to get the “study” and Charter government plan completed in the mandated timeline. Jacksonville’s Local Government Study Commission was given from October 1965 to May 1967 to complete their own Blueprint for Improvement. They completed their plan ahead of schedule in January 1967 but it still took a total of 15 months. My first question before the Commission will be to ask for clarification of Escambia All For One co-founder Scott Remington’s response to a question posed by a member of the Century Council. When asked why consolidated government wasn’t also good for neighboring Santa Rosa County Remington answered, “Because they have too many governments.” Let’s hope that Judge Frank Bell finds in the matter of Keesler v. CMPA, Inc. now before him for a ruling that the public has a “right” to speak to their elected and appointed officials during each phase of the decision-making process. The CMPA Board of Trustees argued before him in this past Tuesday’s hearing that it’s merely a revocable “privilege.” They also argue that the “right to be heard” doesn’t include the “right to speak.” CMPA Legal Counsel Edward Fleming of the law firm McDonald Fleming Moorhead very dismissively derided the public’s desired right to speak as, “A right to vent.” Of course, if the Commission uses the same pretend Sunshine Law procedures as the CMPA Board of Trustees then they may be able to complete their work on schedule with minimal pesky citizen input. Anony March 2, 2009 at 4:12 pm Good grief. Did they all get together in Hilton Head and divvy up the parts to one another? I’ll bet the get-together was called The Conflict Convention.