I’ve seen some poorly choreographed political theater in my day – but the recent farcical skit produced by our elected officials on the Volusia County Council is another brazen assault on our collective intelligence.
This time, their tired Kabuki involved “revisiting” impact fees.
Last week, the now up-for-reelection Councilwoman Deb Denys took center stage and delivered her lines like an aging doyenne, desperately trying to redeem her dismal history of gross disservice to her fed-up constituents.
According to Deb’s well-rehearsed script – she crowed that it might be a good idea for the council to review our stale impact fees in the face of mega-developments growing like tumors along the spine of east Volusia – projects that everyone agrees will ultimately cripple our wholly inadequate transportation infrastructure.
In doing so, her fellow actors in this Theater of the Absurd knew that allowing her the spotlight might give ol’ Deb some much-needed credibility among that segment of her constituency that still haven’t pegged her for the bald face liar she is.
Don’t take my word for it – watch the video circulating on social media taken during her last campaign when Deb passionately promised us she would never vote to remove beach driving from the strand behind the languishing Desert Inn/Westin/Hard Rock project.
During the discussion, in a wholly orchestrated moment, our doddering fool of a County Chair, Ed Kelley, whined like a demented grandmother that forcing developers to help alleviate the burden these gargantuan projects have on existing infrastructure might drive up the cost of homes – or prove a “hindrance” to the creation of more commercial warehouse jobs.
Yep. Old Ed is all about “fairness” when the business interests of his buddies are at stake.
In actively poo-pooing the idea of raising impact fees, the Right Reverend Fred Lowrey suggested (with a straight face) that, “Letting a sleeping dog lie in this case might be the best situation.”
Trust me. That narcoleptic cur known as legitimate impact fees for infrastructure improvements was euthanized 15-years ago.
But, exactly which situation are you talking about, Fast Freddie?
The one where you and your cronies approved massive residential and commercial development from Farmton to the Flagler County line without the first consideration of its detrimental, and irreversible, effects on our sensitive environment and infrastructure?
Or, is it the one in which your uber-wealthy pals at the Volusia CEO Business Alliance are figuring how to best shove a half-cent sales tax down the collective throats of your constituents to pay for the very same environmental and transportation impacts that should rightfully be borne by those who benefit most?
Speaking of sleeping dogs, our own elected Rip Van Winkle – “Sleepy” Pat Patterson – naturally agrees with his goofy colleagues.
It seems whenever the prospect of holding his campaign contributors financially accountable, Pat magically grows a social conscience and openly frets about how reasonable impact fees might price new homes out of the reach of “families.”
(If you believe Pat Patterson gives a Tinker’s damn about your family, see a doctor – now.)
Sleepy Pat even went so far as to suggest that anyone who bases their support for the sales tax increase on how our elected officials address impact fees are comparing apples and oranges.
According to Pat, even equating the two is “getting way out of line.”
My God. These sycophantic slugs are all the same.
Then, yet another highly compensated junior county attorney took the stage and suggested that the formula for calculating impact fees is simply too complicated for us hapless dupes to possibly understand.
Folks, in its current form, the Volusia County Council will never – under any circumstances – ask their handlers to pay their fair share for anything.
That’s not the way it works in the Dinneen administration.
Those whom the Daytona Beach News-Journal has described as our “Rich and Powerful” do not lavish hundreds of thousands of green dollars into the campaign accounts of the anointed ones so they can be bothered with pesky impact fees.
In their world, loyalty goes one way – to the highest bidder.
Especially when these shadowy players are comfortable that they can coerce every man, woman and child in Volusia County to cover the ever-increasing burden with a shameless, money grabbing sales tax hike.
Let’s face it – these incumbent whores are bought-and-paid-for – and one need only review the current campaign finance reports of certain 2018 County Council candidates to see who is compromised – and who is not.
It’s now crystal clear – the burden is ours. Alone.