Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Thursday, November 10, 2022

A Red Wave Hit Hillsborough: County Commission Flips Red and the $23B AFT Transit Tax Is Defeated

It was a Red Wave Tuesday in Hillsborough. 

Voters voted Republican up and down the ballot. They flipped a State Senate seat and the County commission. They defeated the $23 Billion transit tax - put on the ballot by the 5 Democrat commissioners. Voters sent a clear message they do not want higher taxes in Hillsborough County. 

Sunday, November 6, 2022

Hillsborough County's Use of Taxpayer Money To Fund A Transit Tax Campaign Adds to AFT's Three Ring Circus

The All for Transportation (AFT) $23B Transit Tax Hike is now a three ring circus. 

Blame for this circus is with the Tampa Centric 5 commissioners - Kimberly Overman, Harry Cohen, Mariella Smith, Pat Kemp and Gwen Myers - who put the misleading and deceptive tax hike on the ballot. 

The tainted referendum remains on the ballot due to the County's appeal, even though local media and even the SOE were telling voters the transit tax was not valid.

The County's $700K contract with engineering firm HNTB to launch and manage a taxpayer funded campaign associated with the transit tax may also be polluting the transit tax hike.

Thursday, November 3, 2022

Orange County Did So Why Didn't Hillsborough County Put a Clean Transit Tax Hike On the 2022 Ballot?

Orange County appears to have put a much cleaner, more clear and more accurate, according to what Florida State law (FS 212.055) allows, in their transportation sales surtax ballot language. It simply asks voters to vote for or against a 1%, 20 year sales surtax dedicated to transportation and transit improvement for uses authorized by approved by the Board of County Commissioners.

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

Tampa Centric 5 Turns AFT Transit Tax into Three Ring Circus: Just Vote NO and Defeat It At the Ballot Box

The Tampa Centric 5 Hillsborough County Commissioners (Overman, Cohen, Smith, Myers, Kemp) are responsible for putting the deceptive $23 Billion All for Transportation (AFT) transit tax on the November ballot. They are responsible and the reason why a legal challenge was filed against the AFT tax hike.

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Go On Offense and Take No Risk: Vote NO on AFT Tax Hike at Bottom of the Nov. Ballot

Go on offense Hillsborough County voters. 

Vote NO on the misleading and deceptive All for Transportation (AFT) $23 BILLION transit tax hike on the November ballot. 

Taxpayers must not find themselves in another precarious position where unlawful tax dollars are collected from them again.

Stop the abusive use of misleading tax hike ballot summary language for political gain! 

On October 10th, Circuit Court Judge Anne-Leigh Gaylord Moe ruled the massive transit tax was misleading and confusing and therefore unlawful. She removed the tax hike referendum from the ballot.

The same feckless Tampa Centric 5 Democrat county commissioners who put the misleading and confusing AFT transit tax on the ballot voted to hire expensive outside lawyers to appeal Moe's ruling.  

Judge Moe has called a hearing for tomorrow, October 27th at 2:30pm. Oral arguments from both sides will be heard regarding the Plaintiff's Motion to Vacate the Automatic Stay Pending Appeal.

Moe's October 10th ruling came as hundreds of thousands of mail ballots had been sent out and voters were already voting. Voters were swamped with heavy local media coverage of the Judge's ruling with headlines declaring the Judge "rejects, nullifies, removes, blocks, throws off" the AFT transit tax referendum from the ballot.

The AFT tax hike referendum is now tainted. It is reasonable to believe that confidence in the integrity of the referendum election results is now in question. 

The County is telling voters to keep voting on the tainted AFT transit tax referendum that is still printed at the bottom of the November ballot.

So go on offense.

Take NO Risk ending up with another $600M refund mess like the 2018 illegal AFT tax hike. 

Vote NO on the All for Transportation (AFT) sales tax referendum at the bottom of the November ballot. 

Friday, October 14, 2022

As 5 Democrat Commissioners Vote to Appeal AFT Ruling - Special Interests Dump Over $166K More Into Unlawful Sales Tax

 AFT's special interests donors
and their minions 

According to the All for Transportation (AFT) latest campaign filing, special interests dumped over $166K more into the AFT sales tax that was ruled unlawful on Monday.

As we posted here, AFT's wealthy special interests donors are calling in their chits with the 5 Democrat county commissioners (Kimberly Overman, Harry Cohen, Mariella Smith, Gwen Myers, Pat Kemp) who voted to put another unlawful AFT sales tax hike on the ballot. 

No wonder BOCC Chair Overman scheduled yesterday's special meeting an hour before another meeting was already scheduled. No wonder the 5 Democrats voted to cut public comment to 90 seconds. 

The meeting was a joke. It was just an administrative requirement they had to hold because the 5 had already made their decision. Gwen Myers told the public that on Tuesday. The optics from the meeting were a three ring circus. 

The 5 Democrat commissioners had already taken direction from AFT and their wealthy elitists donors. They voted to put another unlawful AFT sales tax, crafted behind closed doors and outside Sunshine, back on the ballot.

Now AFT's wealthy special interests let these 5 commissioners know what they must do "for them". The special interests will be enriched and benefit the most from the $23 BILLION AFT sales tax so they buy influence. 

Below are the latest special interests donors to dump their dollars into AFT. This information was taken from the Hillsborough County SOE's website


AFT special interests donors
dump over $166K more into unlawful sales tax

This is why no AFT leader or anyone associated with AFT showed up last night to speak in support of the appeal. Their special interests bosses had already called in the chits to the 5 commissioners so there was no need for AFT to show up and say anything. They knew their deal was done.

The Tampa Centric 5 Democrat county commissioners are NOT working for the taxpayers of Hillsborough County. 

They are working for AFT's wealthy special interests donors.

And that is why, even after being warned, the 5 Democrat commissioners voted last night to waste more taxpayer dollars to appeal Monday's AFT ruling. 

The chits were called in and the favors had to be done.

This is corruption and it must be stopped 

Hillsborough County taxpayers must stop being abused by these 5 Democrat commissioners who are incompetent and negligent stewards of their tax dollars.

Voters can get rid of Overman, Cohen and Smith in November so do it!

Thursday, October 13, 2022

Very Risky Business! 5 Democrat Commissioners Vote to Appeal Judges Ruling Throwing the AFT Sales Tax Off the Ballot

Tampa Centric 5 Democrat
county commissioners vote to appeal AFT ruling

A special BOCC meeting was called by BOCC Chair Kimberly Overman today at 5pm today. At the meeting, the Tampa Centric 5 Democrat commissioners voted to use taxpayer money to hire outside legal counsel and appeal Judge Moe's AFT ruling. 

Judge Moe ruled Monday from the bench to throw the All for Transportation (AFT) Sales Tax referendum off the ballot because it is misleading to the voters. 

Overman called the special meeting at 5pm, an hour before a 6pm commission meeting that had already been scheduled. 

The special meeting was noticed to the public that those who wished to speak would have 3 minutes to make their public comment. The County Attorney clearly stated that the 6pm meeting can start late, it just cannot start earlier than 6pm.

But the Tampa Centric 5 wanted to get the special meeting over as quickly as possible because they had already made their decision. Gwen Myers told the Tampa Bay Times on Tuesday the county was appealing:

Commissioner Gwen Myers said the county will appeal a judge’s ruling voiding the transportation tax referendum.
About thirty-three citizens had properly signed up for public comment expecting to have 3 minutes to speak. 

The 5 Democrat commissioners who consistently lecture about citizens having a voice, did not want to hear citizens voices at the special meeting. They voted to cut public comment to 90 seconds. 

The 5 commissioners punished the citizens who wanted to speak because Overman chose to schedule this special meeting, to discuss a very important issue, an hour before another meeting. 

The citizens who took the time to signup to speak were not at fault but the 5 commissioners punished them anyway. Horrible optics! 

About 10 people who signed up to speak did not speak after the 5 commissioners took half of the speaking time away. 

Kudos to Commissioner White for diplomatically bringing up numerous reasons why the County should not appeal. 

Remember White won his lawsuit last year that threw out the 2018 illegal AFT sales tax.

The 5 Democrat commissioners totally ignored White's pragmatic warnings and Pat Kemp and Harry Cohen are lawyers. 

The meeting became a circus as the 5 Democrat commissioners made emotional pleas, tried to paint themselves as victims and want to blame everyone else for the big messes they keep creating. Harry Cohen's loud rant was quite a show. 

Instead of making their case for appealing the ruling, the 5 commissioners made the case for their own incompetence and negligence. They are incapable of properly managing the County's $8.5 BILLION budget. 
So the 5 Democrat commissioners voted to spend more taxpayer money hiring more legal counsel and appealing the ruling. 

That money would be better spent filling potholes.

What the 5 Democrat commissioners are doing is risky business that could subject taxpayers to more litigation/lawsuits and another big refund issue.

Watch the meeting here.  

Commissioners Overman, Cohen and Smith are up for re-election.

Voters Beware!

More to come.

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

AFT's Special Interests Donors Call In Their Chits But Judge's Ruling Taints AFT Tax Hike So Take NO Risk and VOTE NO!

AFT Monopoly Men 

Monday the All for Transportation supporters struck out again. Circuit Court Judge Gaylord Moe ruled the All for Transportation (AFT) Sales Tax Hike ballot language is misleading and confusing to voters and struck the referendum from the November ballot. 

Now AFT's wealthy special interests donors are calling in their Chits.  

AFT's rich monopoly men, with money bags in tow, are wanting their donor favors returned and a "return on investment" of the donor dollars they have waged on Overman, Cohen, Smith, Myers and All for Transportation.

Yesterday Hillsborough County commissioner Gwen Myers told the Tampa Bay Times  the County will appeal the judge's ruling. 

We’re going to appeal this and ask voters to keep voting for this while it’s on the ballot now,” said Myers.

Myers, who has championed the tax referendum since her 2020 election to the commission, initially said she would consider scheduling a special election if an appeal is successful.

But Gwen Myers does not speak for all 7 commissioners. The county commissioners have not met yet to discuss the appeal issue and Florida Statute 212.055 requires all local sales surtax referenda must be held in a general election.

BOCC Chair Kimberly Overman released a statement yesterday calling for a special BOCC meeting for Thursday, October 13, 2022 at 5pm. Her statement yesterday, October 11, 2022, was incompetently dated August 4, 2022. 

Citizens can sign up to make public comment virtually or at the meeting tomorrow or send a written comment here.

Overman's statement claims:

We cannot afford to wait another 2 years to find relief for those who need these transportation improvements the most. 
We cannot continue with the status quo.

The status quo is the County being negligent, incompetent and not properly funding the County's transportation needs.

The damaging status quo is because Overman and the 4 other commissioners (Cohen, Smith, Myers and Kemp), who put the AFT sales tax hike on the ballot, eliminated the 2017 $840 Million 10 year transportation funding policy. 

The damaging status quo is because these 5 commissioners eliminated a 10 year  transportation plan funded by using the growth of existing revenues. 

Public safety and infrastructure are the top priorities and responsibilities of all local government. Roads are the largest infrastructure asset the County owns. 

Overman and the other 4 commissioners have failed to do their job. They have failed to properly fund a primary responsibility of county government.

These 5 commissioners prefer massive new tax hikes at a time of raging inflation instead of doing their job and making the hard budget decisions the rest of us must make everyday. 

What is sobering is all the special interests including Jeff Vinik, Darryl Shaw, Ron Christaldi and Tampa General, who have dumped thousands of dollars into Overman, Smith, Cohen and Myers campaigns. 

What is alarming is these wealthy special interests are financially supporting commissioners who have failed to do their job. The special interests would never run their own businesses or household budgets with such neglect and incompetence these 5 commissioners have for years imposed on the taxpayers of Hillsborough County.

The special interests refuse to hold the 5 commissioners accountable for their negligence. Instead they buy influence.

Money talks and now the special interests are calling in their chits. 

They want the County to waste your tax dollars to appeal Monday's ruling. 

Protect your wallet. Do not allow another illegal AFT sales tax create another AFT big huge refund issue. 

Taxpayers must NOT be put at risk of having illegal sales tax dollars taken from them AGAIN.

Take NO risk with the AFT sales tax printed on your ballot.    

Just Vote NO! 

Sunday, October 9, 2022

Breaking: All for Transportation Sales Tax Ballot Measure Violates Hillsborough County Charter

The All for Transportation (AFT) Sales Tax Ballot Measure on the Hillsborough County November ballot violates Section 8.05 of the County's Charter

Section 8.05 requires that all County referendums include a Financial Impact Statement (FIS) in the referendum's ballot summary language. The FIS is not included in the AFT sales tax ballot measure. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

FACTS Expose the Deceptive Pro Rail Tax Disinformation Campaign

Guest post from Dr. Jim Davison who has been involved in the transportation issue in Hillsborough County for over 25 years

Voters in Hillsborough County have been getting mailers from All For Transportation (AFT) extolling their plan for transportation and what a $23 billion sales tax will do for you. 

AFT says their claims are based on the Hillsborough County Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) 4 year old 2045 20 year Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP). 

AFT uses their massive 30 year tax to fund an outdated 20 year TPO plan. That is certainly deceptive. But is using a 30 year tax to fund a 20 year plan also fraudulent? 

Let us look at AFT's claims and determine the facts. 

Claim: 700,000 people are moving to Hillsborough County

Fact: Yes, we all know Hillsborough County is great place to live, but what part of the county are they moving to? The vast majority of the increased population in Hillsborough County will be to the unincorporated areas, > 500,000 of the 700,000. Only about 100,00 to the city of Tampa.

Claim: We All benefit from the sales tax and the AFT plan

Fact: AFT states the tax is split 3 ways; 45% to Transit (HART), 54.5% for roads and 0.5% for planning. That statement is misleading. The Mobility Director for the city of Tampa presented the real split to the BOCC; 45% to HART, 39.9% to Hillsborough County, 12% to Tampa and 2.1% to Plant City & Temple Terrace. This is the actual way the revenues will be split and then the different governments will spend the money how they see fit. Hillsborough County with 70% of the present population and growing by over 500,000 more people will get only 40% of the sales tax. HART with less than 2% of commuters gets 45%. Greater than 50% of the sales tax will be spent within the City of Tampa. Some benefit more than Animal Farm.

Claim: Less Traffic. You will be home in time for dinner.

Fact: The Transportation Planning Organization’s (TPO) own studies show a 4 to 5 minutes increase in the average commute and a 295% increase in vehicle hours of delay. You are going to be late with this Plan.

Claim: Safer Roads. A 35% decrease in crashes and fatalities.

Fact: The TPO’s own studies show that there is no difference in the number of crashes and deaths on Local Roads with or without the tax. Yes, the same amount. The TPO also used revenues not available for their use in safety study and did not include the increase in crashes and deaths that rail and rail stations will have on the road network. Deaths on our roads have gone up despite many cars off the road during the pandemic.

Claim: Citizen Oversight. Another Big Lie.

Fact: The AFT Plan calls for and Independent Oversight Committee to be formed and paid for only by the County. The make-up of the committee will include 3 members each appointed by HART, the County and City of Tampa (9 members). Hillsborough County with 70% of the population, Tampa with 27% of the population and HART, a transit agency with 2% ridership, have equal representation. Plant City and Temple Terrace have one member each. 
This is what AFT calls "fair" representation. 

It is not an "Independent" Oversight Committee because the same people who put the $23 Billion tax on the ballot are the same people who will be appointing their members to the committee.  

The only redeeming aspect of this Committee is that they have no power to do anything about how the tax funds are spent - only the county commissioners can make those decisions. The Committee is just another “advisory” bureaucracy taxpayers will be forced to pay for.

All For Transportation states their plan will fix our roads and sidewalks.

Truth lies in an April 19, 2022 memo that John Lyons, the Director of Public Works sent to the Hillsborough County commissioners. Lyons tells the commissioners that with the 30 year $23 Billion sales tax and the allocations per Ordinance 22-9 roads would only be resurfaced once every 30 years. 

The TPO states that with a schedule of repaving once every 28 years the county will have a $1 billion deficit in road maintenance in the next 20 years. 


This is just a sampling of the disinformation and outright lies All For Transportation and their rich financial backers are trying to sell the voters.

Do yourself, your neighbors and your Community a favor:

    Demand the Truth. 

    Demand a Reprioritization of Existing Record Revenues. 

    Demand the County FIX Our Roads First.

And Fight an inflationary Tax:  VOTE NO on the Sales Tax Hike in November!

Monday, October 3, 2022

Voters Not Supporting Pro Rail Tax Campaign, AFT's Claim They Are "Community" Supported Rated Liar Liar Pants On Fire False

Pro Rail Tax PAC All for Transportation (AFT) claims they are a "citizen-led" effort supported by the "Community". 

That is not true! Voters are already rejecting the $23 BILLION Rail Tax by not supporting AFT's Pro Tax campaign.

Every single donor to the Pro Rail Tax PAC All for Transportation (AFT) is a special interest - according to AFT's latest campaign filings found on the SOE website (select Political Committee Reports from the drop down).

Not one voter or one individual has donated to AFT to support AFT'S $23 BILLION Rail Tax campaign of deception.

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

About That $23 BILLION Rail Tax: Follow The Money

Transformed Tampa Streetcar rendering
Courtesy of City of Tampa's InVision Tampa Plan

Wealthy special interests continue to dole out their dollars in support of the 30 year, ONE PERCENT $23 BILLION Rail Tax on the November ballot in Hillsborough County. 

Developers do not make such huge handouts for massive tax hikes without believing they will greatly benefit from the tax. 

Saturday, September 17, 2022

About That $23 BILLION Rail Tax On The Ballot: DO YOU KNOW?

It's time to scrutinize the $23 BILLION Rail Tax on the November Ballot in Hillsborough County. 

Just as we did in 2018, we will sound the warning again about the massive Bait and Switch Rail Tax do-over. The 2022 Rail Tax again massively overfunds HART - a transit agency with 2% ridership - who financially benefits the most from the tax hike.

Thursday, September 15, 2022

Democracy Dies In Darkness: Rail Tax Campaigns Heat Up, AFT Refuses to Debate.... Again

Bankrolled again by special interests donors, All for Transportation (AFT) is kicking off another deceptive campaign to mislead voters about their massive $23 BILLION rail tax on the ballot.

We are right again. AFT admits it is AFT's rail tax do-over on the November ballot. AFT simply used the Tampa Centric 5 Democrat commissioners as their conduit to put their tax on the ballot

Sunday, September 11, 2022

HART's Finances Run Into the Ground by Same People Pushing $20-23 BILLION Rail Tax

Hillsborough County's transit agency HART is a fiscal mess. HART's governing board is responsible. And their solution to HART's fiscal mess they helped create - a massive new inflationary rail tax hike at a time when we are experiencing the highest inflation tax rate in 40 years.

Highest Inflation Tax Rate in 40 years 

Thursday, September 8, 2022

Lawsuit Filed Alleging Democrat Susan Valdes Did Not Properly Qualify to Run for House District 64 Race

Susan Valdes
(image courtesy of Florida Politics)

A lawsuit was filed August 16, 2022 alleging Democrat Susan Valdes did not properly qualify to run for House District 64. The legal Complaint was filed by Maura Cruz Lanz, the Republican candidate for House District 64. 

Friday, August 26, 2022

Lawsuit Filed Alleging Hillsborough County Rail Tax Ballot Language is Unlawful

 A lawsuit was filed Wednesday in Hillsborough County by Plaintiff Karen Jaroch challenging the 30 year ONE PERCENT rail/transit tax ballot language on the November ballot. The lawsuit alleges the ballot language is unlawful and deceitful and should be removed from the ballot.

The lawsuit filed in the 13th Circuit Court is case #22-CA-007158. The Complaint can be found at the Hillsborough County Clerk of the Court website here by searching on the case number. The Complaint can also be found here.

The Complaint asks that the rail tax ballot language be ruled defective and the County and the Supervisor of Elections prohibited from placing the ballot title and summary language on the November ballot.

Monday, August 22, 2022

Interview with Steve Meisman, Candidate for Pasco County School Board District 1: Is He the Only Qualified Candidate in His Race?

We recently interviewed Steve Meisman who is a candidate running for Pasco County School Board District 1. 

Meisman, as we posted here, filed a lawsuit against the two other candidates in his race alleging they were not qualified to run in District 1 due to their lack of residency required by State law.

We wanted to asked Meisman why he decided to run for school board and why he filed his lawsuit.

Below is a short introduction for why Meisman is running for school board.

The full interview with Meisman that includes more detail about his District 1 school board race and why he filed the lawsuit is below.

Meisman's website is to learn more or to contact him.

Tomorrow, August 23rd, is Primary Election day. School board candidates must get 50% plus one vote to win outright in the Primary. Otherwise the top 2 candidates proceed to the General election. 

The lawsuit will be moot if Meisman wins outright tomorrow.

The court hearing regarding Meisman's case is not scheduled until August 30th.

We will continue to watch and followup until this issue is resolved. 

Thursday, August 18, 2022

Lawsuit Alleges Two Pasco County School Board Candidates Are Unqualified to Run in District 1 Due to Their "Lack of Residency" Required by State Law

Voters in Pasco County take note of a lawsuit recently filed regarding two candidates who filed to run for Pasco County School Board District 1.

Case #2022-CA-2111 was filed August 15th in the 6th District Circuit Court in Pasco County. Plaintiff Steve Meisman, also a candidate who filed to run for Pasco County School Board District 1, filed the Complaint which can be found in its entirety here.

Meisman is seeking an emergency Declaratory and Injunctive Relief that Defendants Al Hernandez and James Washington failed to properly qualify for election as a member of the Pasco County School Board District 1. Meisman also requests that Defendant Brian Corley, Pasco County Supervisor of Elections, decertify Hernandez and Washington as candidates in that race.

Monday, August 15, 2022

Teachers Unions, Education Bureaucracy and Wealthy Special Interests Funding Hillsborough Pro Property Tax Hike PAC - Vote NO!

The Hillsborough County August 23rd Primary Ballot has the Hillsborough County School District's proposed property tax hike on it. This millage rate increase will raise property tax revenues by about $162 MILLION per year. 

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Hillsborough County's "Equity" Transformation: $18B Rail Tax, Remove Interstates, Race Conscious Solutions, Unconscious Bias, DEI Training, Bigger Bureaucracy and Ballooning Budget

Hillsborough County admits the Tampa Centric 5 Democrat commissioners put a rail tax on the November ballot. The 30 year ONE PERCENT (NOT ONE CENT) $18 BILLION rail tax is part of the County's "transformation" to use "Equity" in everything the County does and in all the County's decision making including transportation.

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Deja Vu! Clip from 2018 Interview by Chris Ingram about Rail Tax Boondoggles

It's Deja Vu! Below is a clip from my interview with Chris Ingram in October 2018 about All for Transportation's 2018 rail tax boondoggle. 

2010, 2014, 2016 (did not get on ballot due to Go Hillsborough scandal), 2018 and now 2022. The same wealthy donor class cronies keeps pushing rail tax boondoggles on taxpayers that will greatly benefit them. They and their rail activist allies are at it again in 2022.

Monday, July 18, 2022

An $18 Billion Rail Tax, Accident Prone Trains and 2022 is NOT 2018

The same people who lied about the illegal 2018 rail tax are now pushing the $18 Billion 2022 rail tax. They call it a "moderate" investment and refuse to call it what it is - a TAX. 

These are the same people responsible for why $562 MILLION of unlawful tax dollars was illegally collected. Those funds are still have not been refunded to the TAXPAYERS in Hillsborough County.

How can these people be trusted? 

We already have two of the country's most accident prone "death" trains in Florida -  street level rail lines Brightline and SunRail that cause many accidents and create congestion. 

The $18 BILLION rail tax forces taxpayers to hand HART transit agency, with a ridership of 2%, $8 Billion to fund street level rail in Tampa. Is it fair for taxpayers in unincorporated Hillsborough to fund Tampa rail? Who wants more accident prone congesting creating "death" trains?  

These same people are confident that since voters voted for the illegal rail tax in 2018, voters will vote for the rail tax in 2022. Are they stuck in 2018 believing they they can mislead voters again?

But we're not in 2018 anymore.

And 2018 is NOT 2022!

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Election Watch 2022: CTCL's New Election Meddling Coalition, Biden Tries to Federalize Voter Registration & the Hillsborough County SOE's Been Sued


CTCL (Center for Tech and Civic Life) is the highly partisan Democrat aligned nonprofit where Mark Zuckerberg dumped at least $350 million to influence the 2020 election. CTCL was founded in 2012 by Tiana Epps-Johnson, a partisan who trained Progressive organizers and Democrat Party operatives. 

Aa a result of the "ZuckBucks" shenanigans in 2020, a number of States, including Florida, enacted new laws prohibiting the use of private money on election activities.

Such laws are not stopping CTCL or their Progressive partners from more election meddling in 2022. 

With $80 Million of funding from the Audacious Project, CTCL launched in April their latest initiative: The U.S. Alliance for Election Excellence

Thursday, June 30, 2022

The Sierra Club Took Over the Hillsborough County Commission and They Are On the Ballot in November.

Activists and leaders with the Tampa Bay Sierra Club, Pat Kemp and Mariella Smith, sit on the Hillsborough County commission. The Sierra Club endorsed them both as well as Kimberly Overman.

Monday, June 20, 2022

Danger Zone Again! Hillsborough County Hands HNTB $700K For Taxpayer Funded PR Campaign Supporting Contentious Political Issue - $18 Billion Rail Tax Referendum

Hillsborough County - you have a problem!

At the June 15th BOCC meeting Hillsborough County staff recommended handing $700K to engineering firm HNTB for a taxpayer funded PR campaign in support of the $18 Billion rail tax on the November ballot. 

The County knows they are treading on very thin ice launching a publicly financed campaign for a political issue - the monster rail tax referendum. 

Thursday, June 9, 2022

"ZuckBucks" Related Lawsuit Filed Against Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections and PR Firm Vistra Communications

A lawsuit has been filed in the 13th District Judicial Circuit Court in Hillsborough County related to the "ZuckBucks" grant the Hillsborough County Supervisor or Elections received in September 2020 - just weeks before the 2020 election. 

The lawsuit was filed by Plaintiff Hardam Tripathi on May 25, 2022 against the Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections (SOE) and Vistra Communications, LLC. 

The entire Complaint (case number 22-CA-004366) can be found here. The Complaint is in the first 24 pages with pages 25-173 as Exhibits. The Complaint is focused on Florida Sunshine laws as the case Introduction states:

This is a case about the public interest, and specifically, about the need for transparency in the operations of government and in the conduct of public elections. Plaintiff's Complaint asks only that Defendant, Vistra Communications, LLC ("Vistra") make available to Plaintiff's inspection public documents made transparent by Florida's public records law. 

Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Transportation Explanation: Inflation and Information

With their constituents struggling with skyrocketing gas prices, raging inflation, rising food prices, exploding rents and property taxes, the Tampa Centric 5 Democrat Hillsborough County commissioners (Kimberly Overman, Mariella Smith, Pat Kemp, Gwen Myers, Harry Cohen) put an unnecessary and egregious rail/transit tax on the November ballot. 

This is atrocious, appalling and totally tone-deaf. 

Record property tax revenues are flowing into Hillsborough County, city of Tampa  and to transit agency HART.

Hillsborough County still owes taxpayers $562 MILLION of the unlawfully collected illegal 2018 All for Transportation rail tax.  

Hillsborough County is about to hand YOUR tax dollars to engineering firm HNTB to fund a taxpayer funded CAMPAIGN targeting voters to vote for the Tampa Centric 5's $18 Billion rail tax boondoggle. 

We will continue deconstructing their nonsense and their fiscal irresponsibility, unethical behavior, disinformation/misinformation, false narratives and outright lies. 

First episode of Transportation Explanation is below (about 12 minutes). Direct link is:

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Hillsborough County Democrats Rail Tax Is In the Danger Zone and Worse than AFT's 2018 ILLEGAL Rail Tax

For those who think a rail/transit sales tax hike referendum could not get any worse than the All for Transportation (AFT) ILLEGAL tax perpetrated on voters in 2018, think again.

Who is responsible for putting a more nefarious rail/transit tax hike worse than AFT's on the November ballot? Democrat Hillsborough County commissioners Kimberly Overman, Mariella Smith, Harry Cohen, Gwen Myers and Pat Kemp aka the Tampa Centric 5.  

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Leaders of Tampa Bay Transportation Organizations Request Gov DeSantis Veto TBARTA Funding

Today leaders of No Tax For Tracks, Save Our Streets Pinellas, and Fix Our Roads First sent a request to Governor DeSantis urging the Governor to veto the $1.375 million funding for TBARTA in the budget. 

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

UPDATE: Consent Agenda Items to Hand Tampa Focused Organizations County Transportation Tax Dollars Were Removed From Today's BOCC Meeting

This is an update to our previous post Hillsborough County Using Consent Agenda to Hand Tampa Focused Organizations County Transportation Tax Dollars

Some concerned citizens contacted commissioners requesting the 3 Consent Agenda items be removed from the Consent Agenda. They also raised their objections to the County handing out taxpayer funds to these organizations.

Kudos to Commissioner White who yesterday asked for the items to be removed from the Consent Agenda so each can be discussed transparently and voted on separately.

Apparently after White's request was made, the Westshore Alliance, the wealthiest district in the Hillsborough County, suddenly decided they did not need the taxpayer funds. The Consent Agenda item handing County transportation tax dollars to the Alliance was deleted from today's agenda. 

Interestingly, the other two Consent Agenda items to hand County transportation tax dollars to the Tampa Downtown Partnership and USF's New North Transportation Alliance (NNTA) were taken off today's agenda. 

These agenda items were moved to the June 15th County commission meeting.

The County must put these items on the June 15 Regular agenda to be openly discussed and separately voted on not rubber stamped thru the Consent Agenda.

We will be watching.

Hillsborough County Hires HNTB, With PR, Marketing and Political Consulting Firms In Tow, For Transportation "Public Engagement" Before Knowing What the Campaign Will Cost Taxpayers

It is rail tax campaign time again in Hillsborough County!

Hillsborough County commissioners voted today to hire HNTB for a transportation public engagement program....right after the Tampa Centric 5 voted to put an $18 BILLION rail tax on the November ballot. 

But no one was told how much this will cost taxpayers. No cost estimate, even if just high level, was provided to the commissioners or the public for how much the County expects to spend with HNTB. 

Monday, May 2, 2022

Hillsborough County Using Consent Agenda to Hand Tampa Focused Organizations County Transportation Tax Dollars

At Wednesday's May 4, 2022 Hillsborough County Commission meeting there are 3 Consent Agenda items for the County to hand taxpayer dollars to three so-called public-private "Transportation Management Organizations" (TMO). 

Items on the Consent Agenda allow no discussion because all the items on the Consent Agenda are voted on with just one rubber stamp vote. Consent Agenda items are supposed to be used for routine, non-controversial agenda items. 

This money is flowing right after the commission voted to put the AFT 2.0 30 year ONE PERCENT (NOT ONE CENT) $18 BILLION rail tax do-over on the ballot.

All three of these TMO's are primarily Tampa focused. 

Friday, April 29, 2022

Democrat County Commissioner Pat Kemp Gets 4 Pinocchios For Claiming the ONE PERCENT AFT 2.0 Rail Tax Do-Over is a ONE CENT Tax Hike

On April 15, Hillsborough County Commissioner Pat Kemp, a Tampa Centric Democrat, spoke at Cafe Con Tampa

Kemp spoke about the proposed AFT 2.0 $18 Billion rail tax do-over. She already knew the Tampa Centric 5 Democrats (herself, Kimberly Overman, Mariella Smith, Gwen Myers, Harry Cohen) would put it on the November ballot. Kemp had to catch herself several times as she spoke because the actual vote to put it on the ballot had not yet taken place.

At Cafe Con Tampa Kemp admits what we already have said - AFT 2.0 is almost the exact same as AFT's illegal 2018 rail tax. She touted that AFT 2.0 mandates 45% ($8.2 BILLION) of the $18 BILLION tax be DEDICATED for transit. 

Kemp never said a word about DEDICATED funding for new auto/vehicle lane capacity....because AFT 2.0 has NONE

Just like AFT's illegal 2018 rail tax, the $18 BILLION AFT 2.0 rail tax provides ZERO funds dedicated for much needed new auto/vehicle lane capacity, especially in South County.

Kemp gets into real trouble on April 15th when she calls AFT 2.0 a ONE PENNY tax - go to about 8:10 in the video

Someone in the audience pushed back on Kemp that it is a ONE PERCENT (NOT ONE CENT) $18 Billion tax on the ballot. Kemp doubled down and insisted AFT 2.0 was a One Cent, One Penny tax.

Of course that is false aka a lie. Kemp was attempting to spread disinformation to obscure the truth of how massive the $18 BILLION AFT 2.0 rail tax is.

Five days later on April 20, Kemp voted at the public hearing to put AFT 2.0 on the November ballot. She voted for the County Ordinance and ballot summary language (see below) that clearly states the AFT 2.0 rail tax do-over is a 30 Year ONE PERCENT sales tax hike.

"One Cent" and/or "one penny" is nowhere to be found in the Ordinance and ballot summary language. 

Kemp's actions speak louder than her words. 

Kemp understands the burdensome funding buckets and restrictive earmarked funding percentages within the rail tax. She knows AFT 2.0 is a massive ONE PERCENT tax because that is what she voted for.

We know AFT 2.0 is an inflationary 13.3% tax hike from 7.5% to 8.5% - the highest in the State. It will add to the raging inflation rate of almost 10% in Tampa Bay. 

Kemp misrepresented AFT 2.0 as a One Cent tax - to obscure the truth that the rail tax do-over is a massive 30 year ONE PERCENT $18 BILLION tax hike.

Kemp gets Four Pinocchios for trying to spread disinformation.

Monday, April 25, 2022

As Their Constituents Struggle, Tampa Centric 5 Puts Inflationary $18 Billion AFT 2.0 Rail Tax Do-Over on November Ballot That Benefits Wealthy Special Interests Donor Base

It's On! 

The Tampa Centric 5 Democrat Hillsborough County commissioners put AFT 2.0 30 year ONE PERCENT (NOT ONE CENT) $18 BILLION rail tax do-over on the November ballot. 

Taxpayers have not been refunded one cent of the $562 MILLION of unlawfully collected 2018 AFT rail tax dollars. No problem, just put AFT 2.0 on the ballot.

The ONE public hearing (historically always 2 public hearings were held about sales tax referendums) last week was just a required checkbox in the process. Forty-four people made public comment at the hearing almost evenly split between 40 who opposed and 44 who supported. 

However, there were more people who opposed protesting the rail tax outside County Center before the hearing who did not make public comment.

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Beware of "Deceptive Divas" As the Burdensome AFT 2.0 $18 BILLION "Old Path Backwards" Rail Tax Hits the November Ballot

The Tampa Centric 5 county commissioners will vote tonight at the Hillsborough County public hearing to put the AFT 2.0 30 year ONE PERCENT (NOT ONE CENT) $18 BILLION rail tax do-over on the November 2022 ballot. 

After the Florida Supreme Court threw out AFT's 2018 rail tax as illegal and unconstitutional last year, AFT's largest donor Jeff Vinik said "While today’s court ruling is a setback, we must look ahead and forge a new path forward for 2022..."

But the "new path forward" in 2022 is the "old path backwards" from 2018.

Monday, April 18, 2022

Cannot Trust Those Closely Intertwined With All for Transportation Especially As AFT 2.0 $18 BILLION Rail Tax Do-Over Is Put on the Nov. Ballot

The local rail cartel includes elected officials, unelected bureaucrats, transit activists, some local media allies, lawyers and wealthy special interests who keep funding rail tax boondoggle referendums. 

These people are closely intertwined with the pro rail All for Transportation (AFT) Political Action Committee (PAC) funded by the wealthy special interests. Their collusive behavior and cozy relationships breeds distrust.

They work together, whether ethical or not, and have stacked transportation decision making positions in Hillsborough County with themselves. The result is they reside within their own group think bubble they rarely venture out of.

Saturday, April 9, 2022

Politics Has Taken Over HART Board, Start Regime Change by Removing the 2 AFT Board Members Who Inflicted a Big Legal Mess on Hillsborough County

The All For Transportation (AFT) 
2.0 30 year 1 PERCENT (NOT 1 CENT) $18 BILLION rail tax do-over is all but assured to get on the Hillsborough County November ballot. The rail cartel's Tampa Centric 5 Democrat county commissioners have the votes to do it. 

HART's dismal ridership is less than 2% of the total population in Hillsborough County. No worries...With AFT 2.0, taxpayers will be forced to hand 45%, or about $8.2 BILLION, of the massive tax to transit agency HART. 

HART will use the new Billions, in addition to HART's current .5 millage rate property tax revenue and other revenue sources they receive, to pay for costly rail projects in Tampa that benefits wealthy downtown special interests. 

Who governs and provides oversight of HART? Who would be overseeing any new Billions to HART?

The HART Board. 

And who sits on the HART Board?