'Daily NewsMakers with Jeff Lytle' ... Hendel, Collier Community Alliance; Easton, retired IBM executive; Luzinski, ex-White Sox slugger

Heavy hitters on the civic scene and baseball history are in the lineup for this week’s "Naples Daily NewsMakers with Jeff Lytle’’ airing Sunday morning at 10 on ABC7.

Guests are Murray Hendel, chairman of the new Collier Community Alliance, made up of countywide civic leaders to adress major issues; Marvin Easton, a retired IBM executive working on streamlining support duties rather than consolidating fire districts; and Greg Luzinski, the ex-Phillies and White Sox slugger who now lives in Bonita Springs.

Highlights are at naplesnews.com/newsmakers.

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NewsMakers: Marvin Easton

Why streamline fire support duties?

Marvin Easton

Lytle: So the buzz word is now fire district consolidation. But you see it differently. You bring some new ideas to the table.

Easton: Well, we think we do. When you have a first-responder event — a hurricane, a fire, a heart attack or whatever it is — the number of, and the quality of, and the training of, and the availability of the first responders is the critical success factor.

But behind them there’s the office, the backup office to support them, and they have to do the payroll, and they have to do the purchasing, and they have to do the budgeting, etc., and those are all important.

But in this day and age do we need to have nine separate fire departments? We have nine separate fire departments in Collier County. Does each one have to have its own back office? We’re kind of thinking, with technology today, maybe there could be some coordination there, which would end up saving some money, which could then be used in other parts of the budget.

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NewsMakers: Murray Hendel

Chairman of Collier Community Alliance.

Murray Hendel

Lytle: What makes the timing right for forming your Collier Community Alliance?

Hendel: Well, I got together with a couple of the guys and we thought about this.

You know the Chamber of Commerce. They support business.

Lytle: Right.

Hendel: And there are political organizations that support ... you know, represented by political action committees.

We wanted to be an independent group of guys that were citizens. We had no ax to grind other than we wanted to do what was best for Collier County. And we thought about it. And we said, look, why can’t we just form an organization and look at a couple of issues by getting a cross-section of people on our community.

The beauty of the organization is we have people from all over the county. We have Golden Gate. We have Marco Island. We have Pelican Bay. We have Gulf Shore, and if we get a group of people with different opinions, and we can meld them and come up with a conclusion, then I think the Board of County Commissioners — or whomever we present our package to — might look with favor on it.

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NewsMakers: Greg Luzinski

Ex-MLB slugger talks baseball.

Greg Luzinski

Lytle: What do you make of the outcome of the Ryan Braun substance-testing case? Is there still a Major League Baseball drug policy in place? Or does this case just wipe it out?

Luzinski: No, I think there’s ... obviously there’s a drug policy in place.

Lytle: But does it mean anything?

Luzinski: Yeah, that’s hard to say. You know players from my era, you know, they look at this ... the steroid issue and the drug issue, you know, as ... it’s a black eye on baseball. I mean, you got a lot of guys ... (Mark) McGwire and (Sammy) Sosa went at it for one year to actually bring baseball back. They were hitting home runs 60 at a time, you know, and here they are kind of really blackballed — with a little question mark behind their names.

In the (Ryan) Braun case, they waited too long to test, supposedly.

You know, there is a glitch obviously in the system, and they’re going to need to take care of that. Because with the testing that they do today, it’s hard to believe that anybody could get by with enhancement drugs.

© 2012 marconews.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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