Friday, May 28, 2021

The AFT Cabal Have No Shame: They Took Your Money Unlawfully, Want to Keep As Much Of The Illegal Tax Monies As Possible and Start Taking More

Those Who Lose Do Not Get to Choose - Winning Side Gets to Decide
The Refund Process 

The All For Transportation (AFT) cabal is a political clique of wealthy special interests, influential power brokers, political insiders, unethical bureaucrats, "friendly" media, and transit activists, who privately schemed to deceive voters in 2018. After losing the AFT lawsuit, the cabal is now scheming to try to keep as much of the illegally collected AFT tax monies as they push AFT 2.0 for 2022. 

Monday, May 10, 2021

Leaders of No Tax For Tracks, Save Our Streets Pinellas, and Fix Our Roads First Request Gov DeSantis Veto TBARTA Funding

Tampa Bay Leaders of No Tax For Tracks, Save Our Streets Pinellas, and Fix Our Roads First sent a request to Gov DeSantis requesting the Governor veto the annual $1.5 million TBARTA funding.

Here is the request they sent Gov DeSantis:

Tampa Bay Transportation Leaders Call for Gov DeSantis to Veto TBARTA Funding

WHEREAS, TBARTA was created in 2007 by the Legislature at the request of Special Interests seeking a Regional Rail System that was subsequently rejected by voters both in Pinellas and Hillsborough Counties,

WHEREAS, TBARTA's purpose is to "Plan, develop, fund, implement, and operate a regional transit system in the Tampa Bay region" but in 14 years of existence has little to no accomplishments other than create impractical and costly Master Plans inadequate for our region,

WHEREAS, the 2021 TBARTA Appropriation Project Request is for a recurring annual subsidy of $1.5M of which 0% will be spent on passenger transit service, 85% is for staff salaries, less than 1/10th of 1% will be spent on transportation planning, and the remaining funds will be spent on Rent/Phones/Travel/Meetings/Legal/State and 
Federal Lobbyists, etc,

WHEREAS, the TBARTA Executive Director will earn $275,000 which is more than the Governor of Florida,

WHEREAS, TBARTA board members have failed to prioritize attendance at monthly TBARTA business meetings as evidenced by recent lack of quorum for six months in a row,

WHEREAS, TBARTA's mission is duplicative and overlaps existing planning, transit and transportation authorities including PSTA, HART, FDOT, Forward Pinellas, Hillsborough MPO, Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council, Tampa-Hillsborough Expressway Authority, MPOs from surrounding counties, etc.,

WHEREAS, the only transit service operated by TBARTA is a vanpool that could easily be returned back to HART where the service was initiated or to the private sector,

WHEREAS, Transit ridership was already on a multi-year decline since 2014, and was further devastated by COVID-19 and may never return to pre-pandemic levels,

WHEREAS, costly Premium Transit projects advanced by TBARTA prioritize affluent "choice" riders at the expense of "transit dependent" riders and taxpayers who would never use it,

WHEREAS, COVID-19 has increased work-at-home and decimated prior commute patterns that funnel employees to a central business district,

WHEREAS, Technology and Innovation continues to offer private-sector alternatives to traditional Transit,

Therefore we request Governor Ron DeSantis veto the entire $1.5M TBARTA “Life Support” appropriation from the 2022 state budget.


Tampa Bay Leaders of No Tax For Tracks, Save Our Streets Pinellas, and Fix Our Roads First

Barb Haselden, St. Petersburg, FL

Sharon Calvert, Tierre Verde, FL

Karen Jaroch, Tampa, FL

Tom Gaitens, Apollo Beach, FL

Jim Davison, New Tampa, FL

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Taxpayers Owed Refund of Over $512 Million of Unlawful AFT Tax Monies As BOCC Pursues Putting AFT 2.0 On 2022 Ballot

Taxpayers in Hillsborough County have not received a refund, in any way, shape or form, of any of the unlawfully collected $512 Million All for Transportation (AFT) transit tax monies. The fact that taxpayers are owed over a half a billion dollars of AFT 1.0 monies is not stopping the Hillsborough commissioners from pursuing another transit tax hike.  

At the BOCC meeting on Wednesday, 5/5/2021, the Hillsborough County commissioners voted to begin activities for putting AFT 2.0 on the November 2022 ballot. 

Friday, May 7, 2021

DeSantis Signs SB90: Goodbye "ZuckBucks" Hello Election Protection

Election Protection Bill SB90 passed and Gov DeSantis, who helped champion the issue, signed the bill into law yesterday.

The bill prohibits outside organizations from funding election activities in Florida. No more ZuckBucks can be doled out by partisan, biased Billionaires to meddle in our elections in Florida. 

Monday, May 3, 2021

Hillsborough County contradicts itself in separate court filings involving $500 million

Reposted with permission from Tom Rask, Tampa Bay Guardian

What is to be done with the over $500 million that Hillsborough County unlawfully collected to fund transit? In two separate lawsuits, the county is making contradictory and mutually exclusive arguments.