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Citing FBI and Crime Rate, Tallahassee Chamber Pursues Consolidation Study

Posted on October 31, 2017

Citing FBI and Crime Rate, Tallahassee Chamber Pursues Consolidation Study

Citing the FBI investigation and the violent crime rate, the Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors voted unanimously to underwrite an independent study into potential government consolidation.

In an “Important Business Alert” email, the Chamber stated:

The Tallahassee community is suffering through a climate of crisis created by a lingering FBI investigation into alleged corruption in local government, coupled with a violent crime rate that is the highest in all of Florida. As a result, public trust and confidence in local government are badly shaken and heavily eroded, and public safety remains a daily priority concern.

Sachs Media Group (SMG) recently released a survey titled “Trust in Local Government and Attitudes Regarding City-County Consolidation.” SMG principal, Ron Sachs, serves on the Chamber’s Business Advocacy Committee.

The survey found that 83% of respondents are very or somewhat concerned with possible corruption at the City Commission level compared to 72% at the County Commission level.

Also, the survey found that 60% believed that city and county lines are irrelevant in their lives and 64% showed some level of support for consolidation.

The Chamber email stated:

Tallahassee Chamber has unanimously voted to authorize and underwrite an independent study to provide insight into the possible consolidation of the City of Tallahassee and Leon County governments. The Chamber seeks a credible, timely, and scholarly study that details the economic and functional impacts of any potential consolidation here. The independent study will be shared with the community upon its completion, which is expected by mid-January, 2018.

The Chamber also said the business group was “committed to working with diverse community partners and stakeholders to examine if a consolidated government can create a higher level of accountability, renewed trust in government, and a single unified structure of governance to represent the best ambitions of our community.”

19 Responses to Citing FBI and Crime Rate, Tallahassee Chamber Pursues Consolidation Study

  1. James Reply

    October 31, 2017 at 3:55 pm

    What? You mean to say that the Chamber has sat idly by and watched the corruption take place. Some members may have even participated for all we know.

  2. News_Maven Reply

    October 31, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    Meanwhile, Tallahassee makes the top of Drudge, for the state legislator hanky-panky:
    http://www.tampabay.com/florida-politics/buzz/2017/10/31/someones-spying-on-florida-legislators-tallahassee-is-on-edge/

    Too bad we’ll have to wait for the FBI’s undercover video on our local mafia.

  3. alex Reply

    October 31, 2017 at 5:59 pm

    The Chamber has supported all these political crooks for years. Now they want to find cover and change direction. I put their effort on the same train as the city Comm. letter to the public.

  4. Phil Reply

    October 31, 2017 at 7:41 pm

    Consolidation will not solve our problems. Fact of the matter, some of the chamber members are probably involved in unethical behavior with our elected officials. We really don’y need the chamber pulling the strings behind the curtain anymore and placing people into positions of power and influence. Let’s just go back to one person one vote, eliminate lobbying, and just let the city and county commissions make POLICY, and not try to run day to day operations.

  5. Tango247 Reply

    October 31, 2017 at 10:45 pm

    Here it comes again. The most responsive and responsible business is the sole proprietorship. There is nobody else to hide behind or blame. Every step taken beyond that, from a simple partnership to a NASDAC traded publicly held company just adds layers of complexity. So we take two complexities (the better of which 72% think is corrupt) and add them together to get something better? Lunacy.
    Duval is the last in Florida and has never operated in the black. Started in the red, still in the red, no predictions to get out of the red. Here is a link to all the esteemed company we could join:
    http://www.nlc.org/list-of-consolidated-city-county-governments

  6. JJ Reply

    October 31, 2017 at 10:52 pm

    NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO

    Consolidation will increase taxes for those of us outside the City limits and then we will be paying the County Manger and County Attorney $6-700,000 each instead of the pidly $300,000 they are getting now. Consolidation will do nothing but make it easier for these greedy crooks to hide the fact they are stealing more of our money.

    If they want to make things better, split the county into quadrants and give the eastern southern and western portions to Jefferson Wakulla and Gadsden counties leaving the northern portion as Leon – only because giving it to Thomas County would require state boundaries to change.

    Besides we would still have 12 overpaid commissioners because none of them would give up their precious income er I mean position for the good of the community.

  7. Mike Reply

    November 1, 2017 at 7:50 am

    Why are we giving such credibility to the work of Ron Sachs? This is a man that endorsed someone who not only did not pay child support for 10 years but actively knew he had a child and didn’t do anything until sued.

  8. Anhaica Reply

    November 1, 2017 at 8:19 am

    I hope the Florida Legislature continues to look into moving the capital of Florida to the Orlando area. Tallahassee’s self-serving corrupt politicians, embarrassing high crime rates and isolation from the rest of Florida make this move a sensible and practical alternative. Not to mention Orlando is centrally located to the state’s population.

    • JJ Reply

      November 2, 2017 at 9:47 pm

      Moving the capital would cripple Tallahassee and ultimately lead to more crime. Our unemployment would significantly exceed the levels we saw during the recession. Hiring people to fill the state positions in Orlando will cost the taxpayers more because employees in Orlando will demand a higher wage than the those in Tallahassee. Our hotels rely on the 2 month session to make most of their money for the year. Football season helps, but that is only 2 nights about 7 or 8 times a year whereas the legislature meets for committee meetings and a 2 month session that keeps many of our hotels in business.

      • Painhandle Reply

        November 6, 2017 at 10:07 am

        The first day of all the politicians being gone would be like the opening of a Disney movie. People would be singing, birds would be tweeting…

        Several restaurants would close, but only ones that are under FBI investigation! Housing prices and property taxes would drop. People would sing some more.

        Alas, it was only a dream sequence. In reality the capital is building more buildings. Prices continue to rise, to the detriment of all but the connected.

  9. Johnson Reply

    November 1, 2017 at 10:29 am

    How exactly would consolidating two corrupt governments improve anything? When they combined the dispatch services, the result cost much more than the two separate services and it has been disastrous.

  10. buddrud Reply

    November 1, 2017 at 11:46 am

    And consolidation will somehow fix all of these issues? I doubt that. I’m of an age That I can remember when the city limits were much less. This grab for land is simply City Government trying to get more power. They Tried this years and and failed. No Consolidation will fix the issues of a corrupt government. I have never, and I’ve lived here all of my life, been an actual resident of Tallahassee. I’ve always lived outside the limits. Seeing what’s been happening to City Government over the decades it’s where I prefer to stay.

  11. SNIDELY WHIPLASH Reply

    November 1, 2017 at 11:46 am

    Let me interpret this for you:
    At first glance you think this is the typical lefty knee-kerk programed pivot-spin-redirect your attention to the unrelated subject of consolidation. Don’t you?
    Well of course you do. The Chamber is banking on it.
    What this actually means is that significant member(s) of theChamber have recently become aware they are FBI targets. And they bring up consolidation as some type of a back story to somehow aid in their criminal defence.
    Oh one more significant thing for you to consider. The fact the Directors voted unanimously to go to the grave yard of past failed ideas and dig up the stinking rotton corpse of consolidation is a clue that I am correct.

    • Mike Reply

      November 3, 2017 at 8:34 am

      I agree completely, Snidely – You don’t get rid of the Termites by simply rearranging the Lumber.

      Rearranging or Combining all the COT and Leon County officials and agencies we have now won’t help Tallahassee’s situation a bit – it’s just officials-and-cronies Happy Talk to project a false image of “Change is Happening!” No matter what new Game they invent, we’re still stuck with the same old Players.

      COT officials have poven many times over that they can’t run the city budget in a responsible, ethical manner – and Leon County has no stellar reputation from what I’ve heard and read in the past decade.

      So – what makes any reasonable, common-sense person think that combining these two sullied governments will magically produce something new and ethically reformed?

  12. DavidB Reply

    November 2, 2017 at 3:37 pm

    Oh, HELL NO! I don’t want to have a DAMN thing to do with the city! Tell the vaunted “Chamber” to go stick their idea where the sun don’t shine!!! >:(

  13. R B Reply

    November 3, 2017 at 4:12 pm

    I lived in Miami Florida for some 15 years back in the 1950 to 1965 era. Consoladation with county wide functions that were to save money (one legal police force, one central zoning, building inspection, permit issueing source , etc. etc.), became a political hot button at the time. Dade County had 26 municipalities with in its borders at the time , and it was voted in . So , guess what , they wound up with 26 municipalities plus Dade Metro government which retained most of the employees that were supposed to be eliminated AND added an overall layer of bureaucracy costing taxpayers a considerable increase in advalorem taxes to support this bloated form of government with no practical improvement at any level—just more cost !

  14. JJ Reply

    November 6, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    Now the Chamber is pushing for an airport authority. Normally I would be interested in this but do they ever do anything for our community? They should be taking steps to try and bring businesses to Tallahassee, but instead they support our local businesses and local community by leaving town for their annual conference and supporting someone else’s community.

    • Gabriel Reply

      November 7, 2017 at 12:32 pm

      Spot on!

  15. Major Villum Reply

    November 8, 2017 at 5:22 am

    In this mornings Democrat (11/8/17), the City’s highest legal representative, Lee Shelley presents the following as THE CITY’s and Fernande’s defense to knowingly deleting the text message of illegal activity:

    “The messages were deleted last year under the good faith belief that they did not constitute public records or were transitory communications and not required to be retained,” Shelley said in a letter to John Bussian, a First Amendment lawyer for the Tallahassee Democrat.

    So there you have what the CITY, Legal and the Former City Manager define as ‘Good Faith’ – note Shelley is retiring very shortly.

    The Chamber knows, the Citizens know and the employees know AND the FBI knows. What a travesty. Tallahassee Deserves Better.

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