My father used to tell me intentions are masked in decisions politicians make, including power plays. I read what the author of “Letter to the Editor” titled “Take a look at Winter Haven Study,” of February 27, 2012 has to say about the thought of establishing an Economic Development Corporation to promote economic development in Lake Wales. I agree the idea is novel.
I also agree with the author to use the utmost care and study such matter to the fullest extent. It is about time these matters are studied, not shot-gunned as in the past. We have suffered enough and have, at present, a lot of economic problems because of precipitous actions taken by previous commissions.
Truth has it past situations have been sprung on us, without minimal study, without taking into consideration the effect decisions by the commissioners have in the local population, and we have wound-up with unused, isolated, totally inaccessible structures costing us money. We should learn from those bad experiences.
We should know we are living in a real world, real things, at times, come to us with hard experiences. Let us start with the reality Lake Wales Chamber of Commerce initiated the proposal to join Lake Wales in the institution of an Economic Development Council. The Lake Wales Chamber of Commerce is a private entity.
In the proposal, the Chamber also proposes a job description for an Executive Director/Economic Development Professional, meaning the “Economic Development position, now in place, in Lake Wales must be abolished.
Lake Wales must contribute $100,000, from the general fund, to start this process. In the proposed “Memorandum of Understanding” supporting the proposed Economic Development Council I read in “Article 3- Records and Meetings” the following: “The EDC may, at its discretion, conduct meetings other than its regular meetings in private. City facilities shall not be used for any private meetings of the EDC.”
I ask the simple question: Is this action a direct violation to the Florida’s Sunshine Laws? I think that further studies should be made before $100,000 fly out of our general fund.
Manuel V. CrespoLake Wales