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Some folks consider Bahaia grass as a weed because if you don't keep it mowed you will soon see long seeded sprouts that will, when the wind blows, will spread to places where you (or your neighbors) do not wish it. I will wait until I know something more about the proposal but at this point I am very skeptical.
I would appreciate it if one of you is aware of a factual study (not opinion) regarding the financial impact of undocumented workers and inform me of where I can access such. At this point all I know for sure is that without immigration this country would not be what it is today. Chuck Kiester
Islandeye amd MarcoWoman: On the few occasions I comment on these stories my primary intent is to inform residents of the facts as I know them. Each councilor appoints one member to the code board with affirmation by a vote of the full council. When I tried to replace my representative the council voted me down. I was disappointed in her participation in the boards' effort to adjourn the meeting w/o hearing the cases before it. Chuck Kiester
Unfortunately, the staff writer of this article left out a few facts---that being the fact that this is now the second time the code board tried to circumvent its duty, the first time by trying to adjourn the meeting before hearing the cases brought before it and the second time where they in fact did cancel the meeting because of insufficient number of violations to review. In both situations it is my understanding that those being charged with violations either had lawyers available to attend the meetings or, in the first case, they were actually in attendance. In the second case of the canceled meeting the property owner in one of the cases was ready to fly down from wherever in order to be available at the meeting. In this case, city staff was able to contact the individual in time to cancel his/her airline reservation. As all of you know, however, keeping lawyers on retainer and canceling airline reservations at the last minute costs money---in addition to the costs of city staff (including attorney) preparing for the meetings including the advertisement thereof. You can verify my comments by viewing emails at city hall. Chuck Kiester
When a local government puts out an RFP they should ensure that the lowest bidder has had some experience in constructing ramps---and perhaps the county did in this case. However, I have seen simalar results in my career in north Florida where I nearly lost a trailer due to the inadequate design of a brand-new boat ramp on privately-owned land---it fell into a hole at the end of the ramp and I was told later that it was boaters who caused the 'hole' when they fired up their engines to back off their trailers. Whatever the reason, the county should extend the ramp and, although I understand its trying to save a few dollars here and there, it would have been cheaper to do it in the first place. Chuck Kiester
To Whom It May Concern: I think that most of you know that I am stingy to a fault with spending city money---only Ted Forcht was better at saving money---knowing him I'd bet he voted for me 7 times during the last election to ensure my re-election for 4 more years. The purpose of this blog is to inform those of who have legitiment questions about the above-referenced action by the city manager to spend money to rearrange city hall to the convenience of citizens and staff that the money was probably taken from the nearly $60,000 a year benefits which are not included in our current city manager's contract at his request as he has benefits from his previous career(s). Chuck Kiester
Bill, what a wonderful story and thank you Eagle for printing it. It is absolutely amazing how people with disabilities through hard work and encouragement and support from friends and relatives can achieve unbelieveble skills. I would like to have been on that boat even as a fly on the wall to witness the obvious camaderie among passengers and crew. Chuck Kiester
Frank Recker is correct about the need to build back up the reserves which our previous two councils (of which I was part) squandered away on (in my opinion) nice-to-have projects. I voted for a number of these projects when matching grants were required, especially the DOT grants for bike paths and sidewalks which provides for an $8 to $1 (local) match. Criticize if you wish but I'll take that matching ratio any time I can get it. Chuck Kiester
ajm3s - I disagree. I thought Mr. Barbush's comments to be well-thought out and elegant in his presentation. I wish I had that inate public speaking quality. He, like the author of this letter, is obviously a gentleman and a scholar. Oops! I just reread your comment above and now believe you were actually complimenting him so I take back my first comment. Chuck Kiester
Island Eye: Exactly what I had in mind; while we do need to address the problem, we do not need to solve it overnight. Chuck Kiester
Way to go, Keith! Your contributions to Marco sponsored by Iberia Bank are much appreciated by our residents. Chuck Kiester
Gentlemen and Ladies, please allow me to share my experiences with non-degreed city managers in north central Florida. With the exception of Gainesville (over 200,000) not one of the 32 other cities in the 11-county region, several larger than Marco, employed a so-called professional city manager---most were locals with smarts and natural ability or retired military officers, all of whom were very professional in carrying out their duties. That is why I was so shocked after running into "professional" city managers on Marco after I moved here in 2002 (Moss, Shoemaker and Thompson) whose only goals seemed to be to retain a majority vote on city council and watch each others' backs. When I moved to Marco and noted the fact that the city had not only a professional manager AND a Community Development Director with two professional Planners (where a somewhat larger city (Perry 16,000) did not only have a full-time degreed city planner (much less 2) nor a degreed city manager, that I began to wonder what was different about Marco which required such excessive needs. I concluded 2 things, one that Marco was new to cityhood and needed all the help it could get and turned to the professionals and secondly that because the city was newly created those who served on city council had no background (plan board and other committees), in city governance which left a vacuum for someone like Moss to dictate the agenda. Needless to say, I have concluded that non-degreed city managers, especially those who have a sense of ethics and not being that dependent on retaining their jobs for small cities such as Marco to be best. Chuck Kiester
Gams! Don't think that I've heard or use of that word describing women's legs since I read all of the Donald Lam/Bertha Cool series authored by A.A. Fair AKA Earl S. Gardner (Perry Mason series among many others). Now I know that there are indeed those younger than me (Don & Chris) who actually remember and use the term which, as a young man brought up much better images (which I shall not repeat here) then anything else I have seen on TV. I guess I'm a reader person as opposed to a video person. I still and will always remember the radio shows and books where they released your thinking and imagination. I am not trying to denigrate our current communication system (TV, vidio games, comuputers), but to encourage all parents to introduce all communications/educational avenues to their children instead of taking the easy road of letting the marketplace establish their education and values. Chuck Kiester
George, good idea. Sometimes one lives to closely to problem issues so thank you for the suggestion. Chuck Kiester
Thank you Mr. Martin and Mr. Coombs for your courageous action and caring. I just hope you are following me should something similar happen along our dangerous highways. Mr. Editor: does the newspaper have some kind of annual award for these type of deeds? Doesn't have to be money but perhaps a special section of the newspaper to acknowledge our good Samaritans. Chuck Kiester
Dear fellow bloggers: As many politicians would say, I agree with all of my good friends. First, I agree with those who believe it should be the primary responsibility of the parents to ensure the safety of their children regardless their location. But none of us are infallible and accidents will happen so the parents should not be condemned---they will have suffered enough with the loss of their child and will probably blame themselves for the rest of their lives for their mistake. My heart goes out to them. I feel very lucky to still be living after 69 years during which I could have lost my life on more occasions than I wish to list. On the other hand, I have mixed feelings about the lawsuit. First, my own inclination is to not support lawsuits of any kind, especially those whose primary purpose may repeat may be designed to enrich the family of the victim. Nonetheless, a message needs to get through to those who rent their homes on a part- or long-term basis that they need to ensure their rental properties include all of the safeguards for young children that they would place in their home should they be living there with small children. This was one of the reasons for my support of the rental housing ordinance. Chuck Kiester
As a point of information to those who may have missed the city council meeting at which the action took place. I will skip over the positives for having a committee this large as they have already been well-stated. I will also not address those of you who have questioned the legality of having a committee larger than 7 members except to point out that we previously had a ad hoc rental housing committee of 12, and currently have a utility committee of only 5. Perhaps the ordinance limitations do not apply to "ad hoc" committees. What I do wish to address is the primary purpose of the ad hoc CRA committee from my point of view which is simply to develop a recommendation to the city council listing the pros/cons as to whether the city should move forward with a CRA at this time, if ever. This large committee is not repeat not the official committee developed pursuant to state statutes which, at this time after first reading of the ordinance creating the CRA is the 7-member city council. Given the number of concerns by some of our residents and knowing that the establishment of the CRA will only work with the support of the community, especially of those who have residences or have businesses within the proposed boundary. It is far from a done deal. If the decision is made to go forward, the plan board must be included as an integral part of its operations or, perhaps, as the officially designated CRA board of 7 members. While I believe that certain decisions must ultimately be made by the city council, I have no desire to be intimately involved in day-to-day operations of such an entity. Chuck Kiester
There is short-medium-long-term consequenses here...all of which are apparently being overlooked regarding the computers. I must say that one computer in the hands of a youngster is worth more and far more cheaper than a thousand of books---all of which are probably on-line anyway. Nonetheless, my point here is that computer skills however obtained will not only be absolutely required for jobs in the future but are even now being required for an increasing number of trades and professions. Chuck Kiester
MarcoIslander. I think you may be on to something. First of all, one has to be a bit of a masochist if not, indeed, absolutely crazy to even run for city council. Can't speak for the other councilors but I need all the help I can get. . . I even was crazy enough to run for re-election (only under threat from my wife who said that you will run for re-election or else you will have to go out and get a real job). I love reading these blogs first thing in the morning especially if they include a certain amount of tongue-in-cheek statements. I just wish Ed had a sense of humor. In a more serious vein, the blogs provide me with a perspective I cannot achieve elsewhere regarding the pros and cons of any given issue facing our city so I thank you for your interest in our island, even though we all have differing views. Chuck Kiester
ajm3s. 394-1612 leave message and I'll get back as I leaving for a meeting in Ft. Myers in just a few minutes. A letter of interest to Laura Litzan will do. I guess I know how old you are. Chuck
Hooray for the good Samaritons who stepped forward regardless of possible consequences of their actions. Also hooray for our city's fire/rescue team with whom I have every confidence should I ever need help. Chuck Kiester
AMJ3S,Thank you very much for your constructive comments. I surmise from your comments that you would be a perfect candidate for a spot on the CRA committee. You evidently have more experience with CRAs than I as I have none, even given my long professional career so I need all the help and advice I can get. I would like for us to get together for coffee sometime soon whether you submit a resume or not for a position on the committee if you are so willing. Assuming you saw or simply read about the results of city council meeting Monday evening, I was pleased with the outcome. Chuck Kiester
Good article, Ken. I can recommend the walking tour to one and all. It is fascinating. Chuck Kiester
I have had some of their specials before and the description above made me salivate for more. The prices seem more than fair especially given the price of fresh seafood in today's market---and the wine sounds like a bargain as well. I haven't been eating out much lately as I am trying to lose weight but you have to treat yourself to a gourmet dinner once in a while. Perhaps they could put me on a gourmet seafood/beef diet??? I admit, I am a hedonist at heart so dieting is like a torture to me. More important than my losing weight is that we, the residents of Marco Island, need to support our local businesses. Chuck Kiester, Marco Island City Councilor.
Coucourouz. I believe one would call it "tongue firmly planted in cheek" humor.
Well, I think that they should be hanged, strangled, drowned and poisoned. If they can live through all of that, then they will have earned a seat on city council. Chuck Kiester
Gentlemen and Ladies, give Mr. Grover a chance to prove that the Chamber can be something other than a tool for the power brokers. I have met him on only a few occasions but it seems to me that he really wants to bring this island together and I will do whatever needs to be done to help him achieve this goal. Instead of complaining about past actions of the Chamber, we should welcome a new breath of life in the Chamber by encouraging him to break this cycle of them against us mentality that has been the dominate force in the past by both sides. We need to do the same if we are ever to temper if not in fact solve this problem. Chuck Kiester
Congratulations, Vip. Count the city in---we must get past these economic daldrums. Chuck Kiester
Ditto and congrats to the leadership and staff for all of their accomplishments. Chuck Kiester
Jack, I cannot let your LTE rest without a response. First and foremost, it was Mr. Magel and I who negotiated a settlement with the city attorney in an effort to reduce his fees. Secondly, it was you personally who came up to thank me after the vote for agreeing to place the proposed amendments on the ballot "to allow the voting public to decide the issues" when I had serious reservations about the ballot language. While I and all city councilors have been advised by our city attorney to refrain from commenting in favor or against any of the proposed amendments, I will advise all voters to read the fine print (and not just the statement on the ballot)in making your individual decisions. Chuck Kiester
Shadow, you are absolutely correct about city codes not allowing the type of landscaping which I believe Councilor Waldack is supporting. I applaud Merton on his/her conversion and would be interested in what he/she did that was allowable under Marco City codes. A small step in this direction will soon be coming up for city council consideration, i.e., compacted shell or rock driveways at which time I (if Wayne doesn't beat me to the punch and I hope he does given his commitment to the environment) will open up an overall discussion on the topic of xeroscaping. Given today's technology, surely the private sector can come up with something that is more pleasing to the eye. Chuck Kiester
A message to all bloggers above and on other sites, including Ed Issler. You folks have a nice holiday break. Relax, enjoy your children and grandchildren or family friends during this time of peace. Chuck Kiester
Sharkfloss, et al, Well, Mr. Issler at least got one fact straight (at least according to those that know me, I am indeed a "character"---good or bad depending on one's perspective). As far as the rest of his charges, other than the fact that I unintentional lost emails on my computer 3 plus years ago and was convicted of a non-criminal infraction as charged, he is wrong on all other counts. For example, as a computer illiterate I called Butch Neylon about ways I could retrieve the automatically deleted emails. His response was that it could be done but it would be very expensive. At the same time I received a summons from the Sheriff's office so I let them undertake the expense of retrieving the emails which they subsequently were able to do---so they are on record for anyone who wishes to review them. Personally, while I found it embarassing to be convicted of "unintentionally" losing emails, I also found it amusing at the responses of this release that the accusers of foul deeds found nothing they expected and were chagrined. I will stop at this point except for one final point: I have in my possesion a letter from a (now former) attorney for Alachua County (Gainesville, FL) who stated that I am the most altruistic person he had ever met and, quite frankly, that is how I operate. Otherwise, I could not live with myself. Chuck Kiester
Dear Mr. Issler. Thank you for shoring up my base and bringing in new converts to my cause. I have received several requests for yard signs on major streets, contributions to my campaign fund and many comments of support because of your LTE above. People are smarter than you think and are able to discern the difference between us. Chuck Kiester
Dear Kosherdeli, I happen to agree with you about the pollution of candidate signs including my own. Thank goodness they are only allowed for a relative short period of time and if we don't get them down by end of January, we (the candidates) will also be subject to fines. I resisted my supporters about having yard signs and other campaign materials as I wished to run simply on my record. Chuck Kiester
Dear Jerry and Mary Helen, I doubt there are but a few people on the island who haven't run across the Master's family. They are everywhere, serving on boards and committees as well as being in the support group of so many of the good things that occur on the island. Simply stated, they are two of the finest citizens of our community. Chuck Kiester
Couldn't agree with shadow more. Chuck Kiester
Nice article and timely as well given the Thanksgiving holiday. These folks put it all on the line when they take on the responsibility and expense of adopting homeless children. My hat's off to them. They are what makes America so great. Chuck Kiester
Rob, as much as it pains me to agree with Ed Issler, having served with you for nearly 4 years I know that your votes were not for sale to any faction as payback for the election or otherwise. As I have stated publicly and privately many times, it was my fault for not explaining better the purpose of my first motion to put the STRP back on the table for discussion which you thought was a motion to end it before it began. As I have stated publicly, you in my opinion are the best chairman of the council during my nearly 4 years. I am personally sorry that you have decided not to run for re-election. You will be missed. Chuck Kiester
Semper_Fidelis: Thanks for your comment. Chuck Kiester
Ed Issler, et al: I have finally reached my limit. I normally try to state facts and positions in replying to blogs but the following will not be considered 'politically correct.' Ed Issler, you are lower than an AH as the latter at least has a function. I will also remind or inform you that the good judge himself who you and others like to quote was reprimanded by a three-judge court of appeals for the same reason that he charged me---purposely violating state statutes. But, as we all know, he was and probably still is a part of thesyndicate/machine.Listen to liberator and drop the issue. If not, at least agree to meet me behind the barn where we can settle this issue as I have much to teach you. Chuck Kiester
kosherdeli: You ask a good question re police enforcement or lack thereof. I based my comment Thursday evening on the simple fact that I have not received any emails or phone calls regarding the issuing of warnings and tickets which may not necessarily be the result of the enforcement agencies backing off. I do know that the police department reported at a recent city council meeting that people have apparently gotten the message and they are finding much fewer violations. I can't agree with you more about cars blocking the sidewalk. We live near the Island's school complex so I am particularly sensitive to this issue. Part of the problem is the number of vacant lots which force all of us to step out onto the street so one of my goals is to somehow find money to have the city to construct sidewalks on vacant lots with placing a lien on the properties for the cost of doing so. Chuck Kiester
Finally, out comes the information that many of us sought knowing that leaks in the old sewer pipes is/has been the largest source of water contamination (except for stormwater runoff) and a problem that should have been addressed long before the city enacted the STRP. I commend Mr. Bradshaw for his article. Unfortunately, proceeding with the STRP and the resulting necessity of enlarging the sewer plant given the state of disrepair of the plant and collection system has put the city of Marco in the red; ergo, higher water/sewer rate increases. Chuck Kiester
Congratulations, Bob, regarding your appointment as President of the EDC. I know, another bald-headed planner involving themselves in Marco and Collier County community affairs, but at least he, along with our city's two urban planners, adds a little class to those representing our profession (in my case, former profession).
Good for CJ's for hosting the flu shots. Chuck Kiester
See. Three out of four are either from or have ties to Ohio. All good, hardworking people. Go Buckeyes! Chuck Kiester
Mr. Petricca. I feel I must remind you that as a councilor I tried to do away with the 5% electric franshise fee at last year's budget meetings on the basis that it was not being used for its intended purpose---and, I intend to do the same at this year's budget meetings. Keep up the good work---the citizens of Marco and their representatives on city council need you and others like you who are willing to serve on committees and "tell it as you see it" at city council meetings. Chuck Kiester
Ed Issler, Thank you for what I consider to be my best endorsement for reelection yet. Chuck Kiester
First, I would like to thank all of you for responding to my comments, especially those of you who have acknowledged my contributions to the city. Quite frankly, I was hurt by those of you who lumped me in with those both on and off city council as having responsibility for our current mess (due to my inability to convince other council members to support my positions). I certainly have raised the need to slow down our spending on capital projects (including the so-called "Green Building" advocated by our public works director). My objections have not just been limited to the STRP. As to my ability, or lack thereof, to convince my fellow councilors to adopt my positions, it is difficult if not impossible to lead when they, like me, have adhered to their platforms on which they were elected and THEY ARE THE MAJORITY. I would try a filibuster if I thought that would do any good. I still think the STRP was a mistake for more reasons than I have room to elaborate here. Chuck Kiester
Shadow, I understand from where you are coming. I admit, I am not the most eloquent person in the world, but as many people have told me (even those who did not originally vote for me), I do my homework and make very reasoned arguments for my view and position on all issues, regardless of politics. Finally, I take it that you are unaware that I had the votes to revisit the decision on the STRP which had been initiated by the previous council, but one former councilor did a 180 from his previous vote against the STRP when he saw that the pro-STRP side was going to lose should he vote in favor of my motion. In summary, I did not need the vote of one of our three new councilors at that time should this former councilor have held true to his previous vote---now that's politics. Chuck Kiester
Shadow, not sure where you've been over the past 3 1/2 years, but please do not associate me with that crowd as I have opposed the STRP since its inception. I'm sure that you, if you care to investigate the facts, will find plenty of witnesses to that fact. Chuck Kiester
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