'Daily NewsMakers with Jeff Lytle' ... National, regional and local issues dominate this week’s TV program

National, regional and local issues dominate this week’s "Naples Daily NewsMakers with Jeff Lytle" program airing on Sunday morning at 10 on ABC7.

U.S. Rep. Trey Radel, R-Fort Myers, is asked what Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann’s retirement means for the tea party, and about U.S. involvement in Syria; Lee County Commission Chairman Cecil Pendergrass discusses what comes next for Lee business recruitment after landing Hertz; and Sam Saad III, Naples City Council member, advocates a "no" vote on council for buying 6.7 acres on the Gordon River.

* Video highlights will be posted Monday at naplesnews.com/newsmakers.


U.S. Rep. Trey Radel

Lytle: Let me ask you about the Medicaid expansion. Florida has said no. Yet credible, significant voices in your district, including Lee Memorial Hospital, are saying: "Wait a minute. Do you really understand, to the Florida Legislature and the governor, do you really understand what you’re doing? We need that money. There are poor people who medical help.’’

Radel: Yes, there are poor people who need medical help. And I think that at the end of the day ... liberals and conservatives, Republicans and Democrats have the same goal in mind. But it’s how we do it. Do we want these decisions to be made thousands of miles away, in Washington, with a one-size-fits-all approach for every state, every community, or should we have more local control?

I believe in local control. I believe in state control.

Lytle: But Washington is where the money is.

Radel: Well, and it’s where it should not be.


Cecil Pendergrass

Lytle: You guys did an 80 percent reduction of impact fees for two years. Are you seeing any payback on that yet?

Pendergrass: Well, we did a reduction across the board back to the ‘04 rates.

Lytle: Any results yet?

Pendergross: Oh yes. Hertz. It was a great saving for that company.

I think that was one of the deciding points, why they decided to come to Lee County, the cost of build-out.


Sam Saad III

Lytle: So, about 25 nice single-family homes over there (on the Gordon River), that’s a better use for this property (than a park)?

Saad: Well, it certainly would be better given the other circumstances. Like I said at the beginning, we have eight and a half acres that are just north of there. Say we aren’t going to build a parking lot. Say we’re going to build the most beautiful park that Naples has ever seen. It’s going to rival Cambier. It’s going to be just like Central Park in New York, which some people want. Well, we already have eight and a half acres. We just moved our recycling site across the river ...

Lytle: At an expense ...

Saad: ... at a $3 million expense, to the airport property. So now we already have eight and a half acres for this gorgeous park that will accommodate the Gordon River Greenway. Why are we going to spend another $3 million to make a 14-acre park?

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