Friday, February 13, 2015

GoHillsborough enabling lies and insults

Hillsborough's grand planning for transportation or transit, whatever, since the Tribune has continuing difficulty with their headlines and difference between the two, has started the next phase with announcement of GoHillsborough.

From the new GoHillsborough web site
Our community is facing some tough choices related to the very complex issue of transportation. Quite simply, we are experiencing significant shortfalls in funding just as our population is expanding and our congestion is rapidly increasing, putting greater pressure on our already declining transportation system. The reality is that unless we come together and deal with this right away, our quality of life — our time with friends and family– and our economic stability are threatened.
Lots of platitudes with the right attitude.  But threatened?

They're doing the social out reach thing across multiple channels, including public meetings, "voices", then "choices", etc. As if they've not heard it before, wandering around Hillsborough County, listening to voices and their choices, same as the last decade.

GoHillsborough also has the social outreach side, as they have a Facebook page, Twitter and YouTube channel.  Just like EyeOnTampaBay!

Then there's this from the Tribune February 13th.
Hillsborough County officials took action Thursday to make sure any public comments arising out of upcoming meetings on transportation improvements remain open to the public as well as civil.

Because the stakes are so high, debate arising out of the upcoming public outreach effort is sure to be highly charged, county officials say, and some commentary on county Facebook and Twitter sites could be offensive.

We will be looking at any inappropriate comments,” said George Walton, senior vice president for the county’s consultant, Parsons Brinckerhoff. “We may have to take them off, but they will still be available if you want to dig them out.”
Emphasis mine. Looks like they have yet to kick in the moderation on the Facebook site.

February 7 post spreading lies and misinformation about NoTaxForTracks
This seems to violate the "courteous, respectful and appropriate" comments from the GoHillsborough Rules of Engagement.  Walter John Slupecki, behind the moniker "No Tax For Tracks Hillsborough Truth Page", never counters with any substantial argument or defends his position.  This post also violates GoHillsborough's Rules of Engagement to "Identify Yourself" with first and last name.

February 7 comment slamming the Governor
Not quite up to the GoHillsborough standard of respectful and polite with regards to our Governor, yet they still keep this obviously derogatory comment despite the warning from the GoHillsborugh moderator.

Then there's this:

Feb 8 comment about Tea Party out to destroy Tampa Bay
Again, on February 8, more lies spread about the Tea Party, which has never stated anything about "Defund, Slash, Privatize agenda".

We reached out to Beth Leytham, who is subcontracted out by PB to run the social outreach and marketing and PR campaign, something the BOCC specifically stated they did NOT want. She responded that we can reply back and engage on the Facebook site, though she indicated she did note our concerns.

Is the site to collect feedback ... "Voices" and "Choices" on transportation solutions, or to post lies about others, and then counter their accusations?

Recall George Walton of PB stated they “will be looking at any inappropriate comments. We may have to take them off."

These posts are now 5 to 6 days old.  How bad do the comments have to get?

Hillsborough County does not even own the web site, but you paid for it.

The domain name is registered to a local ad agency Chappell Roberts. Why does an ad agency own the url? The CEO of Chappell Roberts is the marketing and communications executive board member of the big rail advocate Tampa Bay Partnership. There are NONE of the disclaimers on the website that is normally on a website owned by a taxpayer funded entity or government. Does this provide a way to skirt our Sunshine laws? Who owns the data? Is the data gathered and content on this website subject to public access rules? The county is paying a million taxpayer dollars for this effort so why doesn't the county own the domain name? Does the county own all the data associated with this effort? Shouldn't this effort paid for by taxpayers be totally transparent to the public? If so, where are the disclaimers that state the information/data gathered on the website is public information? 

We've asked County Commissioners and staff these questions but have yet to receive any answers.

Similarly, what are the implications for the Facebook page?

You paid for this.  Your tax dollars at work.  Nearly $1 million dollars.

Where is the oversight?

They just started engaging the public and are already out of control.


  1. For ignorant rubes too clueless to figure out what the county means by "no trolling" at these mass transit events...

    They are specifically referring to foaming-at-the-mouth ideologues who show up to a mass transit meeting and scream and disrupt the event, while demanding with a straight face that the county's urban residents who are demanding transit, keep paying taxes which are funneled to more endless road construction and sprawl in outlying areas.

    These loudmouthed jerks who show up and disrupt these events will never be regarded as anything but the trolls and out of touch lunatics they have demonstrated themselves to be over the course of decades of public "debate" about regional transportation.

    It's simple common sense. Anyone who is ideologically opposed to something, by definition, cannot possibly be part of a constructive solution for that issue. If you choose to reject something like "living in an urban area"... No problem, that's your choice in life... But stay the hell out of the way of the people who do live that lifestyle and value it and see purpose in investing their taxes towards it. How dare you try to meddle in the lives of others.

    This is why you are vigorously opposed by many in the community, and this is why the opposition to your ignorant, wholly self serving agenda will only grow and become even more aggressive in rejecting your backwards, outmoded and demonstrably failed perspective.

    1. If this is Jason - hey Jason! Did your comment on get deleted?
      The Consent of the Concerned:
      Hillsborough 2010: 58% - 42% Referendum defeated
      Pinellas 2014: 68% - 32% Referendum defeated
      Polk 2014: 72% - 28% Referendum defeated
      Alachua 2014: 60% - 40% Referendum defeated
      Who won at the only poll that matters - the ballot box?

  2. It continues to be that the Calverts are denying the truth. There are plenty of articles out there about how the GOP, including those who support Tea Party principles, has waged war against public transit in favor of pushing their own pro-road interests. Perhaps I should start pulling up article by article so that this can be known by everyone.

    1. If this is Walter - hey Wally! Truth speaks for itself from the Consent of the Governed - see response to previous comment.

  3. Of course they are who they are Sharon. We buses can see right through them. It's time for Walt to be shut down for good. Let's call on Jamison Fiebrandt, Walt's Navy pal, to get involved. - The Truth Bus #911.