The NBEDZ: An "estimate" wrapped in a "calculation" based on a "projection"
In a letter to the editor in FL Toady [sic] on May 21st, titled, "Commissioner should apologize for walkout" maureen the rupester wrote in part:
"Trudie Infantini walked away from her duty... complaining she was being picked on by Commissioners Robin Fisher and Chuck Nelson.The only thing rupester forgot was: "Paid Political Advertisement. Paid for and approved by maureen the rupester and Florida Toady." (Little aside: If rupester wants to complain about Comm. Infantini, let's put rupester and Infantini in a room together and give them the exact same monitored -- so no one cheats -- math test and see who comes out ahead and understands the number better. Any bets on who would get the better score? Hint: she doesn't speak with a British accent! Then we'll see if rupester gets why Infantini walked out.)
rupester has her own way of handling difficulties when it comes to someone saying something unflattering about her. I remember a certain PSJ4T meeting in which things unflattering to the PSJ4T people were said and they called the Brevard County Sheriff's office on the people saying the unflattering things. Then there are the seven threatened law suits she has thrown at me. Not to mention the pooper paper crud she writes about those who disagree with her (a la William Powell, the Port St. John Civic League, Pete Costello, etc., etc., etc.) I have been the beneficiary of many of her tirades including one that an attorney contacted me about, saying that I may have cause for legal action against rupester. He contacted me: without my asking him, without me knowing beforehand it would happen. He was that aware of the wrong rupester had done me.
So what right has rupester to complain about Infantini? rupester is a hypocrite-extraordinnaire, as always.
Comm. Infantini's walkout came after Chair chuckles nelson said that he'd like to send Comm. Infantini's calculations to a college to see if they would approve of her calculations and she said for him to do so. The Chair was low to say that, but he did. Ol' chuckles scores! Then, as if pre-arranged, andy anderson asked if there was another CPA that they could hear from. And robin fisher piled on with "a real CPA". A war on women happening in the BOCC! Where are the feminazis defending Comm. Infantini? Why didn't rupester stand up and say something about that old-fashioned pile on? Where were the Wrongies standing up for her? Where was Comm. Bolin-Lewis? Why did she not stand up for her the other female on the Board? Or is it all RINOs and the Wrongie together -- definitely leaving Infantini out of their clique? I think we all know the answer there.
rupester apparently forgets one thing: For a Commissioner to denigrate another Commissioner's education and expertise - even though the commenting Commissioner's education is less than the one who is being denigrated - is not just wrong, it's far beneath what a Commissioner should be doing WHILE IN THE MIDDLE OF A MEETING OF THE BOCC. Master's Degreed CPA Infantini and Commissioner Infantini are one in the same person and she understands money matters a LOT better than a Public Relations major who played football for a certain amount of time in his life (college football did well; drafted by the Miami Dolphins but "0 Season" is listed on his NFL professional profile: played for two teams in the USFL the Arizona Wranglers [1983 stats: 4 sacks] no stats for either team in 1984, and the Chicago Blitz [no stats] and no stats for 1985: great professional record!).
That "real" CPA that fisher, anderson and chuckles nelson wanted up there, Stan Retz? His qualifications for being a "real" CPA? He graduated with a Bachelor's Degree - compared to Infantini's Master's Degree - in "accountancy". He's definitely more qualified than MASTER'S DEGREE Infantini. Yep. Sure. Anyone who can go to school for four years is SO MUCH MORE qualified than someone who went to school and studied accounting for six years. Absolutely. Oh. Another thing? Stanley E. Retz is robin fisher's business partner: proof via the Florida Division of Corporations. Yeah. He's not biased, is he? No wonder fisher wanted him up there.
By the way, Retz did NOT dispute Infantini's calculations he just followed his partner's lead and made fun of her. A personal attack: great argument and great math: three against one. Takes a Bachelor's Degree to get that, huh? Retz admitted that he was there to support the fact that the board already existed and he was ON the NBEDZ (a fisher appointee, no doubt). He made two statements regarding Infantini's assertions: that the lunch analogy got kind of confused at the end there and it sounded like that lunch was going to wind up costing $62.50 and that he didn't know where she got her numbers. Wow! Talk about a refutation of Infantini's assertions! If ever I heard a brilliant mind at work, that was it. It seems to me that Commissioners chuckles nelson and fisher and those they trust are easily confused: Bachelor's Degree and all. Do we know where the NBEDZ got its numbers, since, as one commenter stated, they won't release a fiscal statement about the whole thing? No. So the same can be said about him!
Retz said things like: "these are dollars that have not been raised yet." And "invest it and get a return many, many times over"? How can he or anyone know for certain? He made these statements but yet "we don't know" was also part of his answers.
Also, the "real" CPA said that there is no one who can say how much the property "will go up or go down". When this "real" CPA talked about tangible property he said that he wasn't there for the whole last meeting in which the tangible tax was added because he had to leave early because his wife was in the hospital, so he couldn't comment on that. Well, lah-ti-dah! How on earth can he be called up to refute Infantini when - in his own admission -- he doesn't know what the heck he's talking about? Then he says that the projections he and the committee put forth about new construction that he "doesn't know if anyone can say what the appreciation of value is going to be between 2029 and 2030 so it's all a calculated estimate and a projection. We don't know..."
Notice the 2:20 time frame in the video, in which the words "calculated", "estimate", "projection" are said. So what is the "return on investment" going to be that they are promising "will benefit all of us" (Retz)? How can there be a definite return when there are only "projections" if there is no guarantee?
When Infantini brought up the fact that the wording was changed and procedure was not followed, that should have put a brake on the whole issue until procedure could be done, if the BOCC under chuckles' leadership had been following the rules. It was not.
When Infantini said that the wording was changed to include "tangible" property, she pointed out that it changed the whole base of the taxes for the NBEDZ. Tangible property is property you can touch that is not real estate. For example, computers are tangible property, as are chairs, desks, vehicles, carpets, lights, air conditioning units, etc. What happens to the tangible property after you purchase it? What happens to your new car the moment you drive it off of the car lot? Right: the value decreases immediately. As you use it over the years the value goes down. So how can that help the tax base for the NBEDZ? How? You tell me. Infantini was right, the change in the wording from strictly "real" property to include "tangible" property made a difference!
When others got up in support of the NBEDZ, and said things like "real money" and "no one can say" why was the plan approved at all? If no one can say because they are not using "real money" but speculating what the future will bring, why was the plan approved? The "real" CPA said that there was going to be "a return on investment of five to one". Oh? A return on investment of "five to one"? Considering the fact that they are speculating how can they say that? Where is the written guarantee? Where is there anyone who can say that this particular Development Zone is going to do ANYTHING WHATSOEVER to help us thirty years down the road? Can they say for certain that the NBEDZ will actually draw ANY new businesses to the area? Are they going to guarantee that they will be helping the existing businesses enough to be able to stay in business over the next thirty years? No. No guarantees, no for sure benefits. Just higher taxes. Sweet.
Then there's the fact that the issue was railroaded via chuckles nelson and fisher. Railroading does not become them. They ignored the Robert's Rules of Order and denied discussion! There is supposed to be discussion! Chair chuckles ignored Robert's Rules, listened to fisher's commands, "Call the question!" and railroaded the plan into approval. What a crock! This is not the way things are supposed to happen in a public meeting. Then to have fisher denigrate Comm. Infantini's higher education than he has, than his business partner, the "real" CPA has (Bachelor's Degree compared to Comm. Infantini's Master's Degree), is beyond the pale. I completely support and understand Comm. Infantini's walk-out. I think she did it to make a point and that point was effectively made.
There was a gentleman named Martin "Marty" Adams from Rockledge who spoke and said that he is a business broker and consultant to small businesses and that he had investigated just about every study published on Economic Development Zones and there are a lot and "they don't work." "The main reason they don't work is because they don't create customers." According to Mr. Adams, California is taking steps to do away with EDZs. I looked it up and found that Gov. Brown is considering it, "The governor's budget proposal did not mince words regarding Enterprise Zones. Cutting the program would, according to the proposed budget, save $381 million in 2010-11 and $581 million in 2011-12. But beyond that saving, the budget implies that it would also be getting rid of a program that has been ineffectual and even mildly detrimental to the state's economy." The draft budget states that Enterprise Zones shift 'economic activity from one geographic region within California to another geographic region within California.'" (Note: Different names, same idea: EDZ's and Enterprise Zones are the same thing.) So what Mr. Adams said about California is true.
This study, done in New Jersey, found that Enterprise
"1) Delivered a limited economic impact on the zone economies.
So far so good. Sounds like something we want to do, right? How about another? In this study of
there is "Box 7" on page 41 of 83 that gives the "pros" and "cons" of zones. Remember, this is "worldwide". In the list of "cons"
are the following (not the complete list):
What happens to those zones that are not "most", "better run", "well-run" or "many"? What happens in those zones? Answer: just the negatives, the "cons". Yes. We need an Economic Development Zone in North Brevard! Let's do this! (Sarcasm, in case you had any doubts.) It sounds to me as though the men on the Brevard County Commission - chuckles nelson, robin fisher, and andy anderson (and fisher's cohort, the "real" CPA) - are opening their own war on women since women pay the highest cost for these things!
An author wrote about a Social-Economic Zones (similar to EDZs) workshop in India. He wrote in part, "The presentations at the conference and subsequent discussions raised serious doubts over desirability of SEZs from various aspects. Prima facie, SEZs can lead to some serious consequences." SEZs are similar to EDZs and they don't work in India, either. When you read the comments on the Indian SEZs, they also consider their Constitution: "There is a provision for not having any democratically elected bodies of local governance in the SEZs." You know what? It's the same way with this NBEDZ and our U.S. Constitution. Elected officials are supposed to do the spending, not the NBEDZ committee. Constitution? Who needs it?
It sounds to me as though the County is counting on another housing bubble. Considering what happened to the real estate market in 2010, I think that fisher and chuckles nelson are building a promise of "many, many times" return based upon a "calculation" that surrounds an "estimate" that they "don't know" what will happen with properties being built, or businesses going in. Yep. Sounds like another real Brevard County Commission Sure Thing!
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