Thursday, August 10, 2006

Speaking of Sunshine Law Violations

The following email was written to Charlie Grapski for violating the Sunshine Law while he was a member of the Blue Ribbon Committee on County Finances. We all remember how Mr. Grapski accused a number of members of that committee of being unethical and bad, political actors. In the end, Mr. Grapski bogged the committee down so badly that the final report to the County Manager was nearly worthless.

Yawn . . . another committee, another town, another imaginary dragon for Mr. Grapski to slay. Yipeeeee.

-----------------------------------

Charles
I do not think that it is appropriate under the Sunshine Law for you to be responding/commenting to the BRC on Mr. Stringfellow's correspondance. This is one of the things the County Attorney talks about in his Sunshine Law briefing with Advisory Boards and
Committees: the members can receive from other members, but can not respond or comment back to the members. I beleive this is considered a 'meeting' and all meetings must be advertised. Potentially, this is something that could be voted on by the BRC. Of course I am not an Attorney but I encourage all BRC to NOT respond to any correspondance you receive on the BRC; bring your comments to the advertised/televised meeting. Thanks

--- Charles Grapski wrote:
> A memorandum - or just a thought. And this should be forwarded on to
> all persons who received this initial memorandum - or just a thought -
> and should be entered into the record of our committee.
>
> I find it interesting and enlightening that Mr.
> Stringfellow has raised
> this issue publicly - and has consulted two lawyers (albeit not the
> two lawyers on the committee) - who have stated to him that they
> believe he has an actionable complaint against me for my statements as
> a member of both this committee and the public. While I believe Mr.
> Stringfellow has failed to understand either the content or the point
> of my statements - I find it disappointing, as regards Mr.
> Stringfellow, that
> he believes he was "slandered" by my comments.
> Despite the legal
> advice Mr. Stringfellow was given - I believe my comments fail to meet
> any legal standard of "slander" - and I believe my comments were
> accurate although not as to the point as I intend to make them in the
> future. As for an apology - I can assure you - no such apology is
> necessary nor appropriate, as I believe my comments to be accurate and
> appropriate - and find the actions in question, of the committee, to
> be
> 1) inappropriate; 2) inconsistent; 3) irresponsible; and 4) yes,
> unethical. I will be happy to further elaborate the details of my
> position as to each of these points at a later date
> - and will stand
> behind my position without regret. The irony, however, is that I do
> have some regret that Mr. Stringfellow felt personally attacked in
> this. I personally feel Mr. Stringfellow is one of the members of the
> Committee who is acting out of simple regard for the public and public
> service. Thus I would never have made such a claim as to Mr.
> Stringfellow's personal actions. My comments were addressed
> specifically to the committee as a whole - and in particular - to
> certain actions by a faction of the committee. I believe that my
> description of their actions as inappropriate and unethical is
> accurate and thus look forward to the opportunity of defending my
> positions in a court of law and hearing the details of the legal
> advice Mr.
> Stringfellow has obtained on this matter. Since Mr.
> Stringfellow has
> raised this issue to this level - I will state, for the record, that I
> do not believe that all members of the committee are acting with the
> same intent or standard as Mr. Stringfellow and other members of the
> committee. I believe they are acting out of their personal and
> particular interests without due regard for the public interest and
> the public good. I will certainly now make a point of articulating,
> in detail, in a more formal contribution as a member of the committee
> to our final product exactly what I mean by this and the basis of my
> analysis. As in any analysis, whether it be my analysis or Mr.
> Stringfellow's, it is only the analysis of one person - and has the
> inherent flaws of that basis. As flawed as one person's observation
> may be due to the inherent limits of being only one person - the merit
> of their claims will be based on the facts at hand, many of which are
> a matter of public record, and the arguments made with them. I look
> forward to the opportunity to placing these facts - and my arguments -
> into the public record. They will thereby stand or fall on their own
> merits and my ability to clearly articulate them.
>
> Once again, I am sorry that Mr. Stringfellow feels personally offended
> by my personal observations and analysis. I stand fully by my
> position, and therefore find no basis for a call for an apology, let
> alone such an action to be taken by myself. I do believe, however,
> that the work of this committee - as problematic as this committee was
> from the start - had been progressing in a positive manner until the
> end of December. Since that time I believe actions have been taken by
> what had been a minority faction, with the assistance of the chair,
> which I believe have undermined the integrity of the process and
> thereby the quality and indeed legitimacy of our final work product.
>
> Such actions include the holding of a meeting, not a full meeting of
> this committee and without the ability of the full committee to
> participate. This meeting which was formally held for a purpose of
> assisting the minority in writing a minority report but instead had a
> completely different purpose. It did not facilitate the minority to
> articulate their minority report in such a ways as to cooperate with
> each other within the framework of Florida's open meetings laws.
> Instead this meeting was used, and the record will show was intended
> to be used, to create a faction with a majority vote to fundamentally
> alter the work product of our committee. That faction then refused to
> have the matters they discussed fully and openly deliberated by the
> full committee - but used their manufactured majority to effectively
> use the force of numbers, rather than the merits of their positions,
> to change the report being developed by this committee.
> Much of what this
> manufactured majority was able to obtain through this procedural
> mechanism had been put before the full committee on numerous occasions
> in the past - and each time they were unable, when full discussion of
> the matter by all members of the committee took place, to obtain even
> a majority of support. By utilizing this procedural short-cut, the
> chair has allowed the committee to be effectively hijacked by a
> faction - however much they may have compromised with each other - to
> alter the work product produce in full committee over many months. I
> find this activity to be highly troubling - and to ironically have
> been used as a means to effectively quash the voice of individual
> members of the committee (and thus a minority), given the fact that it
> was purportedly done so as to help a minority articulate its voice.
> I believe that
> these actions are highly undemocratic and are inappropriate at any
> level of government. I believe, furthermore, that such actions
> constitute unethical behavior - as I believe any attempt to use the
> force of numbers to obtain an outcome, rather than the power of reason
> in full and open deliberation, to be a violation of the very ethical
> basis of government.
>
> These activities have tainted and thus undermined the work product of
> this committee. I no longer have confidence in the chair and I have
> serious doubts and reservations about the quality and significance of
> the final work product of this committee. As this committee has once
> again been extended in time - it may be the case, in the end, that
> these matters will be resolved in such a way that I can again support
> the Committee's report. At this time, however, I believe the report
> is no longer a reflection of the work of the whole committee - but now
> reflects, at least in part, the work of a faction of the
=== message truncated ===

=====
Have a great day, XXXXXXXX

88 Comments:

At Fri Aug 11, 08:40:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Nice try Stafford.

That is NOT evidence of my violating the Sunshine Law.

There was no violation of the law in my writing or posting that - which was posted for the WORLD to see.

So you are again grasping at straws, making things up, and playing the red-herring game.

Furthermore, what I did on the Blue Ribbon Committee was stand up for what I believed - and not allow the violation of the law by the committee (which it did - under its chairman's guidance - and which I duly documented and presented to the County Commission along with the report - using a video of the meetings to demonstrate my point).

As for the work of the committee being nearly worthless - the work of the committee actually was quite good - up until the Chairman and a few others attempted to get into the report (successfully) what they could not via the full deliberative process - but via an illegal meeting held by only a handful of the members and without being advertised for the purpose it was used for.

It was supposed to be a minority report writing session. But instead they craftily gathered a majority of the members - excluding the members who raised objections during the regular meetings and placed evidence into the record leading to the particular items being voted DOWN - and at the LAST MINUTE (after nearly two years of full meetings of the commission) - stated that if each one there chose ONE ITEM they wanted in the report - and didn't object to the items each of the others wanted in the report - they could effectively REPLACE the report that had been developed over time with all members involved - with their own items.

And they then attempted to SUBSTITUTE that minority report - for the full committee's report.

Then they tried to prevent MY minority report from being included via a majority vote.

Sorry Stafford - I did not violate the law writing that email - although I did expose a problem with the Blue Ribbon Committee's being hijacked by the chair and a few of its members (mostly representing the development community by the way).

And I am PROUD to stand behind what I did on that committee.

Understandably those who attempted to use that committee as a means of getting the "development industry" to write a report to give to the County COmmission to recommend changes that that particular industry's interests desired - were quite upset that I was quite successful in thwarting that attempt.

And they were unable to accomplish that following the rules - and so attempted to do so with a very unethical and illegal effort - which I also in the end exposed and thwarted.

Had they not done that last minute attempt - the Blue Ribbon Committee's work would have been even more significant.

However - nothing that I did undermined the recommendations we made with a TRUE consensus building effort.

I merely exposed the hijacked report for what it was - a report with the minorities views represented as if they were the full committee's views - all of which was done in one single meeting at the end of the committee's nearly two year's of existence - and when the members who had successfully caused the very items adopted in full committee to be rejected were not present (and known not going to be present) in a meeting called specifically for a fundamentally different purpose.

Sorry Stafford - try again.

That is actually a good example of why I am an effective political actor - I know the rules and I don't play the games but expect the process to be actually democratic and deliberative.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 08:46:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Stafford,

You state that this was an email sent to me BECAUSE I violated the Sunshine Law.

Please state WHO sent that email to me. Please state WHAT EXACTLY was a violation of the Sunshine Law in posting that message publicly (it was made public was it not?). Please state the SPECIFIC violation of the law.

Please note that the person who sent that email states that "they are not a lawyer" and thus this was not a legal conclusion that I had violated the law.

Please note that there is simply no basis upon which to claim that this is a violation of chapter 119 Florida Statutes.

If you would like - please present a legal brief here that attempts to argue that this was a violation of the law. As no such legal action has ever been taken (and I challenge you to go ahead and file such an action - as I know there was no violation of the law) - this will be your chance to try and show your ignorance of the law.

I will gladly respond and refute each and every aspect of your attempt at claiming this was a violation of the law.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 08:48:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

I'll also be glad to post the video that I presented to the County Commission showing how the chairman of the Blue Ribbon Committee deliberately attempted to hold a meeting for the purpose of SUBSTITUTING the report deliberated and voted on by the majority of the committee in full session over several months - at the last minute - through the misuse of a meeting held for the drafting of a MINORITY report - and then how after substituting the MINORITY report for the FULL REPORT - they attempted to prohibit MY minority report (joined in by another member of the committee) from even being presented AS a minority report.

You will also note that the County Commission then voted UNANIMOUSLY to receive the report ONLY WITH my minority report included.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 08:48:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Facts that we know:

1) Mr. Grapski believes that Mr. Watson is not qualified to be City Manager

2) Mr. Grapski accused Mr. Watson of violating the Sunshine Law

3) There are legal ways of bringing action against someone violating the Sunshine Law

4) Mr. Grapski is a famous litigious person

5) Mr. Grapski spends lots of time accusing people of being CORRUPT.

Question- why hasn't Mr. Grapski brought charges against Mr. Watson for Sunshine Law violations?

 
At Fri Aug 11, 08:59:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, we are still waiting for you to post the video of the Mayor refusing to sign a non-legal, non-binding statement of interests. When can we expect that? We are waiting with baited breath!

 
At Fri Aug 11, 09:15:00 AM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

Actually, I referred to the sunshine law in a generic sense.

The person that wrote the email was a county employee, assigned to take the minutes of those meetings. No, she is not an attorney, but she is right that discussion of the governmental body business by body memebers via email is considered a meeting. Like any meeting, it must be noticed.

Furthermore, what you violated was the State of Florida Constitutional Provision regarding open records and meetings. The provision is as follows:

Section 24, Access to Public Records,(b) All meetings of any collegial public body of the executive branch of state government or of any collegial public body of a county, municipality, school district, or special district, at which official acts are to be taken or at which public business of such body is to be transacted or discussed, shall be open and noticed to the public and meetings of the legislature shall be open and noticed as provided in Article III, Section 4(e), except with respect to meetings exempted pursuant to this section or specifically closed by this Constitution.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 09:17:00 AM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

That is actually a good example of why I am an effective political actor - I know the rules and I don't play the games but expect the process to be actually democratic and deliberative.

You, apparently, don't know them as well as you think.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 10:55:00 AM, Blogger Ward Scott said...

Stafford:

Thank you for this post about the Blue Ribbon Committee. It further demonstrates a longstanding, widespread pattern of disruption of the democratic process for disruption’s sake, conducted simply for the thrill of it, for the fact that this type of behavior can be perpetrated on unsuspecting people who give of their time for the public good, notwithstanding their individual differences.

Sadly, for me, reading the writings of the “self-appointed special prosecutor” posted on this blog has not been unlike watching a writhing, snarling dog that has fleas scratch itself until its flesh bleeds and oozes from its own self-inflicted wounds. When someone tries to help the dog, the dog bites the person who is trying to help it.

The excessively theatrical, sometimes hysterical comments made by the “self-appointed special prosecutor” when he lashes out at anyone and everyone who questions him have eroded the support of those of us who have been trying to keep an open-mind while offering him the benefit of the doubt.

Deputy County Manager Richelle Sucara wrote the email the “self-appointed special prosecutor” asks about. The “self-appointed special prosecutor” knows that, so it is disingenuous for him to imply otherwise.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 03:42:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski says:

up until the Chairman and a few others attempted to get into the report (successfully) what they could not via the full deliberative process - but via an illegal meeting held by only a handful of the members and without being advertised for the purpose it was used for. It was supposed to be a minority report writing session. But instead they craftily gathered a majority of the members…. although I did expose a problem with the Blue Ribbon Committee's being hijacked by the chair and a few of its members.

I know it is hard to follow his twisted sentences and changing ideas in the samr paragragh, let alone the numerous (add ins) in the middle of a sentence but I ferret out the following from the above quote.
1) Mr. Grapski says it is an illegal meeting

2)There were only a handful of members present

3)It was advertized properly (otherwise he would claim that it wasn't properly noticed)

4)There was a majority as they were able to do business.

So counter to Mr. Grapski's comments I see that there was a majority (not a few) of it's members who added an item to the agenda which happens all the time. The add on didn't please Mr. Grapski so he goes on the warpath.

I can see from personnal experience why the majority would not be happy with Mr. Grapski and his continual twisting of the facts to suit his agenda and "vision" of the WORLD, not to mention his illegal e-mails.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 05:11:00 PM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

Hugh Calderwood said:
So counter to Mr. Grapski's comments I see that there was a majority (not a few) of it's members who added an item to the agenda which happens all the time. The add on didn't please Mr. Grapski so he goes on the warpath.


Bud, I would say you nailed it. Why does this sound so familiar? I know. Because it is happening again, now.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 05:31:00 PM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

A little birdie tells me that Joe Little was overheard on the phone, Wednesday, arguing with Charlie.

I wonder what that was about?

 
At Fri Aug 11, 06:45:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Facts that we know:

1) Mr. Grapski believes that Mr. Watson is not qualified to be City Manager

THAT IS CORRECT. The City's Charter requires that the position of City Manager be filled SOLELY based upon the applicant's qualification for the job. The job of City Manager is a highly specialized field of training - which requires an advanced University degree in Public Administration.

Clovis Watson DID NOT and DOES NOT have such a degree or any equivalent training.

2) Mr. Grapski accused Mr. Watson of violating the Sunshine Law

That is correct. As well as the City Commission itself, your wife Jean the Mayor, and Deputy Clerk Alan Henderson.

3) There are legal ways of bringing action against someone violating the Sunshine Law

Yes there are: a civil action or a criminal action (the latter having to come from a law enforcement agency such as the State Attorney or Sherrif's office).

4) Mr. Grapski is a famous litigious person

Am I really? Gee thanks. But I have only taken a handful of cases (all those completed have been succcesful) - Mr. Watson has probably been involved in ten times the number of cases that he personally has brought.

5) Mr. Grapski spends lots of time accusing people of being CORRUPT.

Actually - I spend a lot of time UNCOVERING and EXPOSING ACTUAL corruption.

Question- why hasn't Mr. Grapski brought charges against Mr. Watson for Sunshine Law violations?

Well - how do you know I have not. What I have not YET done (but there still is time) to bring a CIVIL action personally. That takes time and money - you see. And I do this with my own PERSONAL money and time (and I don't have a lot of either). So I have to take one issue at a time in these matters - but I am certainly working towards doing this very thing Mr. Calderwood. Rest assured I am on the case.

However - with regard to CRIMINAL violations of the law - I have taken the necessary steps required to do this - but there seems to be little desire of the local State Attorney's office to enforce the law when broken by the City of Alachua. I have also tried FDLE - who began an investigation - until it spoke to Spencer Mann at the State Attorney's office who convinced them that THEY had the matter under control. Why would he seek to keep them from investigating the matter?

 
At Fri Aug 11, 06:47:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Hugh Calderwood said...
Mr. Grapski, we are still waiting for you to post the video of the Mayor refusing to sign a non-legal, non-binding statement of interests. When can we expect that? We are waiting with baited breath!

Really - are you still waiting. Well you will have to wait till I get around to it. I do not jump at your beck and call. You are merely a means whereby I pass the time while doing other computer related matters that I can spend a few moments responding to your feeble attempts to mislead the public about my actions and the actions of the City of Alachua.

What I have given you was the DATE of the incident. I am intending on providing the actual documents. And PERHAPS I will post a video of the affair if I deem it worth the time.

Notice however you have SHIFTED from your statement that it never occurred - to your claim that it is "non-valid" and "non-binding."

So again Mr. Calderwood - nice try.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 07:04:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Scott - coming from you this is a complement to me. Thanks.

As for this being "disruptive" - it is disruptive of UNdemocratic process - and is perfectly democratic (its a public email).

You guys are grasping for straws in your little echo chamber.

The team of Jones, Watson, Scott, and Calderwood - you guys are good for entertainmnet.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 07:18:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, I am well aware of when the video was taken, I was there. I have posted on that occasion already. It was non-legal and non-binding. It was nothing more than an attempt to embarrass Lewis and Hills. It didn't.

You said that the Mayor refused to sign it. She was not on the commission at that time. You are spreading a false rumor.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 07:18:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, when are you going to tell your "friends" that you lied to them. The State Attorney's Office has said that they never offered you the "deal" you have touted. We all know that you didn't qualify because you didn't have the money or the petitions at the time of qualifying.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 07:42:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Stafford said:

The person that wrote the email was a county employee, assigned to take the minutes of those meetings.

Yes? And as such she has no authority to do as you describe - rule that I had violated the Sunshine Law. So you falsely portrayed this post in a negative light to mislead the public.

Stafford said:

No, she is not an attorney,

Correct.

but she is right that discussion of the governmental body business by body memebers via email is considered a meeting. Like any meeting, it must be noticed.

Well, yes Stafford. That is correct. BUT that is not a proper DESCRIPTION of that email.

First of all - that email was sent to a PUBLIC list. Thus it was not a PRIVATE discussion. Secondly - that email does NOT discuss policy matters before the committee for a vote - but the misbehavior of members of the committee. It therefore does not fall under the "meeting" definition that you refer to that needs to be noticed.

There was nothing illegal or inappropriate about that email Mr. Jones - so you are flat out wrong and deliberately attempting to mislead.

Stafford said:

Furthermore, what you violated was the State of Florida Constitutional Provision regarding open records and meetings. The provision is as follows:

Section 24, Access to Public Records,(b) All meetings of any collegial public body of the executive branch of state government or of any collegial public body of a county, municipality, school district, or special district, at which official acts are to be taken or at which public business of such body is to be transacted or discussed, shall be open and noticed to the public and meetings of the legislature shall be open and noticed as provided in Article III, Section 4(e), except with respect to meetings exempted pursuant to this section or specifically closed by this Constitution.

Sorry Stafford - you are incorrect. That email does not constitute a "meeting" that requires public notice.

I CHALLENGE YOU (Please do the following) to file a LEGAL CHALLENGE on the basis of that email. PLEASE DO SO MR. JONES.

I am fully prepared to stand trial on such a charge - and I know that I will prevail.

And I am more than happy to spar with any of you any day on what the Sunshine law is, is intended to do, and what it does do. Any day, any time Mr. Jones. Any day, any time. See you in court when you file the above sunshine law challenge - you can even go before your good friend (and hardly unbiased) Judge Roundtree. By the way = was he not formerly a person who held your position - chairman of the county Republican party? Was he not?

Oh well - that was an aside. BRING IT ON STAFFORD.

If you feel that was a violation of the sunshine law - do what I do - put your money where your mouth is and file a lawsuit against me on that. I DARE YOU.

I know that is not a violation of the law, you see, and thus I have nothing to fear from such an action.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 07:54:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Hey Ward - I've seen your writing published before - except it was under the pseudonymn Clovis Watson. Its hard to mistake the pomposity that exudes from your style (and you - and English teacher!).

Call it what you like - I did the job I believe I was supposed to do. To stand up for the PUBLIC GOOD and the PRIVATE RIGHTS of this community. And that is what I did - and I was quite effective at PREVENTING an abuse of the power of the chair, a violation of the process (and indeed the open meetings law), and the hijacking of the final report of a committee that you thought was going to be the "development industry" report to the County commission so that the few commissioners you have (yes - none are Republicans - but they are strangely close to you guys - I was "so shocked" when Ward Scott joined your party!!! Heck - he's been working with you guys throughout his little venture into politics - what a surprise).

What you call "efficient" and "orderly" - I call (and the law defines as) a violation of the democratic process - denying the public's right to participate in and oversee the policy making process.

I am proud to have served on the Blue Ribbon Committee - and I accomplished part of the reason I was there - to prevent a small group of self-interested actors to try and force the County into changing its policies to meet their self-interested desires without due regard for the public good. That I successfully achieved.

I also had originally achieved participating in a report with EIGHT RECOMMENDATIONS that were near unanimously worked out by a wide variety of people - including those developer interests - under the PROPER procedures.

That was SUPPOSED to have been the report - and they had been adopted and re-adopted despite numerous attempts to change them - and despite numerous attempts to put in what was continuously rejected by MAJORITY vote in FULL committee.

So you guys HIJACKED the committee - and took a minority report - and SUBSTITUTED it - originally actually REMOVING what the Committee worked collaboratively on for months - for that report.

Then when I stopped that - the minority report was still made the MAJOR findings of the FULL committee (which was not the case) and relegated the eight actual full committee recommendations to secondary status!

Then you guys tried to prevent my minority report - laying out what occurred and how and how that was improper - from even being seen by the County Commission.

You guys failed - and yes - one little disruptive me caused all that problem. Well - there were others who were not all that happy with what was attempted to be pulled off by some through that committee. So does that make me disruptive - or pretty damned powerful! It sounds like the latter - you guys should be my PR team.

According to you - I can single-handedly undermine the government.

Wow! I need to get out and do it more.

I did what you guys are afraid of - I stood up and openly exposed what you were doing instead of playing the game - and putting in my piece of the pie and allowing each other interested actor to do the same. You guys call that compromise. I call that collusion.

It is what is wrong with American politics - the "dealmaking" process - rather than the deliberative process - determines our policies.

That ensures that single interests and self-interested actors are who advances - rather than (and usually at the expense of) the public interest.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 08:01:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Actually Mr. Calderwood - with you second attempt to itemize and logically lay out (in an awkward and incomplete way) my arguments - you again miss my point and fail to grasp what I have said.

The minority report writing meeting was a scheduled meeting for the purpose of a MINORITY (those who could not get their way in full committee when ALL were allowed to discuss and debate the issues) to write the MINORITY REPORT (the only thing they were authorized to do - and this was required so as to meet sunshine law requirements).

But I saw what they were plotting before that meeting even occurred - and laid my objections on the table (as I believe everyone should do).

Then a few huffed and puffed at how dare I question the intentions of the chair.

Well - the video tape of that meeting shows the chair expressly laying out his plans: he says from teh beginning that they were an official meeting of the Blue Ribbon Committee - they were not; he says that they have a majority of members there - and thus what they do there - if they all agree - can BE the report of the committee (the report was actually voted on and ready several months prior - but the chair kept trying to CHANGE it unsuccessfully through many tactics - this was the last one tried). And then he says - if we all agree to pick ONE ITEM that we want in teh report - and agree to allow each other's item to be included - THEIR minority report would BE the report of the full committee.

In one single meeting - at the end of our tenure - one group of members attempted to make its decision the complete work of the full committee over nearly two years.

That was UNETHICAL. And it was a very smooth and cunning move - that normally would have worked.

Good thing on that committee - there was someone like me - who could see what they were up to, who knew the laws and rules well enough to know that they could not legitimately do this, and who had enough balls and integrity to stand up to them - particularly given that they were now an organized majority.

And I did stand up to them - I did stand my ground - and I did make my point.

That to me sounds like I was a very EFFECTIVE member of that committee. Particularly from the perspective of the COMMON/PUBLIC GOOD.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 08:27:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

said...
Mr. Grapski, when are you going to tell your "friends" that you lied to them. The State Attorney's Office has said that they never offered you the "deal" you have touted. We all know that you didn't qualify because you didn't have the money or the petitions at the time of qualifying.

Fri Aug 11, 08:18:55 PM

I am never going to say that - as what I said was the truth.

If the State Attorney's office is representing that as fact - they are either speaking without knowledge of the facts or THEY are lying.

I am not stating that Bill Cervone offered me that deal. Bill Cervone, as far as I am aware, has not been directly directing the direction of this case (if he were - I believe that the charges would have been immediately dismissed). The case is being handled by Geff Fleck. In addition to Mr. Fleck - every place he shows up - so does Alachua's own native son, Spencer Mann. That to me is very curious.

It is a FACT that from the beginning these individuals have recognized that the charges that Clovis brought against me could not stand up - and they have known that Clovis LIED in having me arrested.

It is a FACT that it was at the State Attorney's office - in the period during which they DID NOT charge me with a crime resulting from Clovis' arrest, but without DROPPING the charges - that the tape was listened to and someone decided they needed to try and get something better against me if they were going to have negotiating power.

So - and this is corroborated by Clovis and your wife's testimony under oath by the way - the State Attorney's office waited for the City to file complaints with the Sherrif's office and to claim probable cause against me filed by two other city employees (Alan and Tara Henderson).

These cases are such a stretch that it would be humorous if I did not believe it was criminal - including anyone in the state attorney's office, the sheriff's office, or the city of Alachua who knowingly participated in this - but they too have not been charged against me, only THREATENED with charging me (and Michael Canney).

Again - BRING IT ON. I have violated no law - and I will not be intimidated by a rogue individual within Cervone's office (as I do not believe Cervone, as far as I am aware as of this date, would have ever allowed this to happen had he been fully aware of the facts) trying to play a game by raising the stakes and calling my bluff.

Yes - a criminal defense even against bogus charges is personally costly. It will cost probably $100,000 to try that case. And I have been OFFERED the chance to have all charges against me dropped - and thus the whole episode endd.

And I am REFUSING that deal. I believe it was unethical. And I believe it was legally problematic - to be offering to drop criminal charges if a citizen agrees to not bring civil charges against public officials. That is BLACKMAIL. And I find it offensive - patently offensive.

Most people would have taken the deal. That means most INNOCENT people. And that is the game played by our CRIMINAL "justice" system daily. Its the game of dollars and odds.

I don't play that game. I will stand firmly for principle.

BRING IT ON.

The deal was offered. From day one they have been requesting that the matter be resolved via mediation. What is there to mediate? I am willing to go to mediation - and see what happens. But if anyone thinks that I will not seek the full prosecution of Clovis Watson and other city officials for what they have done to me PERSONALLY (and they can really forget that idea if they are talking about what these actors have done to the people of Alachua county and to the democratic process) - then they don't know me.

The "deal" was offered by the individuals in the State Attorney's office mentioned above. It was contained in a package of THREE things that the state attorney's office wanted. The first was for there to be a cooling off period during which I continue to not go to Alachua City Commission meetings (Why would that be needed? What are the Alachua Commissioners afraid I might say - or others might here?). The second was for me to agree to not record ALACHUA city officials without their consent until there is some kind of clarification of the law. (This only applied to that set of officials). And the third was the one that is simply totally unacceptable and something I would never agree to do - and that is to agree to NOT PROSECUTE CLOVIS WATSON.

So that was the deal. It was presented to me by my attorneys as their demands. They also mentioned some things that they were willing to give me - some of which I actually think would be great - and would love to see happen (they also are things I think ought to happen already - and anyway) - and as such I'll hold back the details of those for now - as I hope that I can convince the State Attorney's office of the necessity of their doing so without any such deal for Clovis to go scott free.

My attorneys quite responsibly and reasonably urged me to give it full consideration - despite the fact that I had told them emphatically from day one that any discussion of not prosecuting either Clovis or the City (or other City officials) was simply out of the question - and despite my reiterating that several times over the past month.

And so I did. I analyzed and analyzed the matter from every conceivable perspective. I tried every justification that could possibly make it the correct choice. And I certainly weighed it against the personal cost of a very long, drawn out, nasty and expensive (probably epic) court battle with the State and its unlimited resources (they may not win - but they can make the war costly).

And I concluded that this would NOT be the right thing to do. It went against my principles. And it failed to consider the impact on the VICTIMS of Clovis and the City's corruption - the people of Alachua - many of whom put a lot of faith and trust in me when I first began standing up to their tyranny. It would not be good for the COMMUNITY - even if I could find personal justifications (and even personal benefits).

I would not have had to have conceded anything to them in terms of their being right. Such a deal would not have entailed them being found to have been right.

But that was not the issue. And so I decided - after weighing all of the options - that there is simply no way in the world I will agree to such a deal - there is nothing that will deter me, whatsoever, from seeking to prosecute Clovis - AND THE CITY - for all of their wrongful actions.

That is why I had to step out of the House race. Because I am CALLING in this game of poker. And I know that if they want to ante up - and try and prosecute me - that I will win in the end, but it will be very risky in terms of personal costs.

I will proudly stand trial for my actions - and defend myself - and expose the City's corruption at a level never before proven in a court of law. I'd prefer not to have to go to criminal trial - I'd prefer to find a way to work this out in such a way that it doesn't waste the public's resources by prosecuting trumped up and bogus charges. But that decision is in the hands, ultimately, of Bill Cervone.

We are talking about CORRUPTION - blatant and massive corruption - in Alachua City Hall.

And you do not compromise with corruption. You don't play that game - and make a deal - and get something out of it for yourself while the others have to share their pie with one more they are forced to bring into the gang to keep their little scams going. You stand up - and look them straight in the eyes - and you say BRING IT ON.

BRING IT ON, sirs, BRING IT ON.

The time has come for someone to stand their ground against this little cabal - and if that has to be me - so be it. I am fully prepared to fulfill that role.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 09:18:00 PM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

Charlie,

You are incorrect about Judge Roundtree. He was not the chairman of the Republican Executive Committee.

 
At Fri Aug 11, 09:20:00 PM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

Ok, Charlie. I get it.

According to you, if something is on a consent agenda, it is a violation of the open meeting law, because the commissioners must have communicated their consent (even though that isn't the way it really works), but if you send an email that has committee business in it to other committee members and it did), that isn't a violation of open meeting laws.

Of course, you could never be wrong, could you?

 
At Sat Aug 12, 08:17:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Here we see classic Grapski showing all the signs I outlined before:

1)Paranoia

These cases are such a stretch that it would be humorous if I did not believe it was criminal - including anyone in the state attorney's office, the sheriff's office, or the city of Alachua who knowingly participated in this - but they too have not been charged against me, only THREATENED with charging me (and Michael Canney).

It is a FACT that it was at the State Attorney's office - in the period during which they DID NOT charge me with a crime resulting from Clovis' arrest, but without DROPPING the charges - that the tape was listened to and someone decided they needed to try and get something better against me if they were going to have negotiating power.

2)Persecution

And I am REFUSING that deal. I believe it was unethical. And I believe it was legally problematic - to be offering to drop criminal charges if a citizen agrees to not bring civil charges against public officials. That is BLACKMAIL. And I find it offensive - patently offensive.

3)Maglomania

And I certainly weighed it against the personal cost of a very long, drawn out, nasty and expensive (probably epic) court battle with the State

I will proudly stand trial for my actions - and defend myself - and expose the City's corruption at a level never before proven in a court of law.

FACTS in the case:

Mr. Grapski illegally recorded a private individual without their permission. When caught and the law was explained to him he continued to repeat the offence.

In fact he went on television and proclaimed that he intended to continue it and in fact he did. There are some who believe he actually recorded conversations within the State Attorney's office! Is that true, Mr. Grapski? Will you own up to that also since you believe that is your RIGHT?

 
At Sat Aug 12, 09:40:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

No actually Stafford I can be wrong - and I was INQUIRING as to whether Roundtree held that position - to find OUT if it was correct or not. Can you tell me if and when he ever had ANY position with the Republican party. Someone was conveying this to me - and I was inquiring with you to verify it - as I do not know.

So yes Stafford - I can be wrong.

But I am not wrong on the Sunshine Law, I am not wrong on the Consent Agenda, and I am not wrong on the taping of public officials.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 09:46:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Stafford Jones said...
Ok, Charlie. I get it.

According to you, if something is on a consent agenda, it is a violation of the open meeting law, because the commissioners must have communicated their consent (even though that isn't the way it really works), but if you send an email that has committee business in it to other committee members and it did), that isn't a violation of open meeting laws.

Of course, you could never be wrong, could you?

Fri Aug 11, 10:20:45 PM

Ah the typical Stafford Red-Herring ploy. I have never made the above claim: IF something is on a consent agenda; THEN it is a violation of the law - and you know that.

I have detailed the specifics of what is illegal about HOW the city of Alachua MIS-uses the Consent agenda tactic over and over.

The problem with the Consent agenda is NOT that the Commissioners WOULD NECESSARILY have given their prior consent - and thus it would be a violation of the open meetings law.

You see - I assumed that Clovis MUST have been communicating with each of the Commissioners to get their consent - since they were all willing to allow the items to be adopted with their consent - without them ever being INTRODUCED into the record, READ, even PRODUCED (other than their titles) for anyone to read, and DISCUSSED.

That would have been a violation of the SUnshine Law - as Clovis would be acting as a liason to circumvent the SUnshine Law.

It turns out that the CIty is doing even WORSE than that. Clovis Watson (taking direction from someone OTHER THAN the city commission) is actually LEGISLATING 90% of the City's business - including his own contract and retroactive pay raises - WITHOUT ANY INPUT or even OVERSIGHT by the five commissioners!

They merely rubber stamp - without even deliberating (or even knowing what they are approving) WHATEVER Clovis Watson determines.

May as well NOT have a commission.

But the violation of the law on the Consent agenda - comes from the DENIAL to the PUBLIC of the ability to observe and participate - in an open public meeting - in the deliberation on those items.

That, Stafford, is the violation of the law.

As for my email: 1) It did not discuss any of the policies that we were deliberating - so it was not even close to be a violation of the law; 2) it was a criticism of the actions of members of the board - which can be done via an email such as that; 3) that email was not "private" anyway - but was posted on the PUBLIC listserve of the Committee; and 4) the original email from Mr. Stringfellow would have been a violation of the same law - under your definition.

So try again Stafford - try again.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 10:12:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Hugh Calderwood said...
Here we see classic Grapski showing all the signs I outlined before:

1)Paranoia

Oh Mr. Calderwood - you are too amusing.

Hugh Calderwood said... (quoting me)

These cases are such a stretch that it would be humorous if I did not believe it was criminal - including anyone in the state attorney's office, the sheriff's office, or the city of Alachua who knowingly participated in this - but they too have not been charged against me, only THREATENED with charging me (and Michael Canney).

It is a FACT that it was at the State Attorney's office - in the period during which they DID NOT charge me with a crime resulting from Clovis' arrest, but without DROPPING the charges - that the tape was listened to and someone decided they needed to try and get something better against me if they were going to have negotiating power.

Mr. Calderwood - those are facts. Plain and simple. No paranoia required.

Hugh Calderwood said...
2)Persecution

Again - you are too pathetically amusing Mr. Calderwood.

Hugh Calderwood said... (quoting me)

And I am REFUSING that deal. I believe it was unethical. And I believe it was legally problematic - to be offering to drop criminal charges if a citizen agrees to not bring civil charges against public officials. That is BLACKMAIL. And I find it offensive - patently offensive.

Those are facts Mr. Calderwood - again no "persecution" - merely a statement of the facts. Remember - you stated that I was lying that the State Attorney offered a deal - and based that on the mere fact that they were "officially denying" the deal. I laid out the facts - in detail - to prove that this was not the case.


Hugh Calderwood said...
3)Maglomania

I believe, Mr. Calderwood, the word is MEGA not MAGLO - but then again - maybe you can consult with your good buddy Clovis when you want to use "big" words.

Hugh Calderwood said... (quoting me)

And I certainly weighed it against the personal cost of a very long, drawn out, nasty and expensive (probably epic) court battle with the State

I will proudly stand trial for my actions - and defend myself - and expose the City's corruption at a level never before proven in a court of law.

Mr. Calderwood - since you misused the above word (and misspelled it) could you please explain what you considered "megalomanic" about the above statement - its not a proper use of the word - what do you think the word actually means and how does the above fit that description?

Hugh Calderwood said...
FACTS in the case:

Mr. Grapski illegally recorded a private individual without their permission. When caught and the law was explained to him he continued to repeat the offence.

Actually Mr. Calderwood - those are not facts in this case.

I have been open about what I did from day one - I have not hidden what I did nor have I chose (as most people facing criminal prosecution) to keep the facts to myself and let the State have to prove them. I have been open about the facts - because the facts are wholly consistent with the law.

1) I did not ILLEGALLY record Mr. Watson. I DID record Mr. Watson.

2) Mr. Watson was NOT a private individual - but a public official engaged in public business in his public office of business.

[By the way - that means that Mr. Watson had no "reasonable expectation of privacy" - which would be necessary to even begin to invoke Florida Statute 934. That statute does not make it illegal to record private individuals (let alone public officials engaged in public business). That statute does not require the obtaining of PRIOR CONSENT from all individuals before recording them. You are simply ignorant of that law - as is Clovis Watson (and that fact was made clear in his sworn statements under oath this week in depositions).

3) Clovis Watson actually DID give his permission to the recording (even though that was not required). Clovis Watson stated - on tape - on several occasions that he KNEW he was being recorded and that he "had no problem with that."

4) Clovis Watson did not "catch" me recording him (legally or illegally). I did it IN PLAIN SITE in front of him - and I had previously STATED I was recording my interactions with the City.

5) Clovis Watson did NOT "explain the law to me." To begin with - that did not happen on the tape (so I don't know where you get your information from - other than your good friend Clovis Watson). Secondly - Clovis Watson does not even know the law himself (one of the problems having unqualified individuals given such powers).

6) I did not "continue to repeat the offense" - as I had not committed an offense to begin with.

I did continue to record Mr. Watson - as was my right - and as Mr. Watson, knowing that I was recording him, CONSENTED to be recorded - and continued to talk with me "on record."

So you are full of you know what Mr. Calderwood. You may feel that you can fool and mislead people with these rants - but you will not succeed. Few people are as naive and gullible as you think.

And besides that - I will SOON be releasing to the public the AUDIO tape itself - which has Clovis Watson ACKNOWLEDGING he is being recorded and CONSENTING to being recorded. So there goes the claim of 1) secret; 2) without consent; 3) and any basis to even try to link that to a criminal activity.

As I said Mr. Calderwood - the State Attorney's office itself recognizes that they have NO CASE regarding Clovis Watson (and they have NOT CHARGED me with a crime - only Clovis Watson did that - and that is not sufficient to have me prosecuted).

I am ready, willing, and able to stand trial for this alleged offense. And I am also prepared to assert my civil rights against Clovis Watson and the City in a court of law (what the State Attorney is trying to prevent) - and I will be doing so, Mr. Calderwood, rest assured.

Hugh Calderwood said...
In fact he went on television and proclaimed that he intended to continue it and in fact he did.

Actually that is not what I said on television - nor did I "go on" television to do this.

I was INTERVIEWED by TV 20 and asked a question about taping public officials. That is not "going on" television - which implies I WENT TO the TV station FOR THE PURPOSE of making that statement. I did not.

But I did say that I did nothing wrong or illegal - and that I would continue to record my interactions with City officials in Alachua - as is MY RIGHT.

Hugh Calderwood said...
There are some who believe he actually recorded conversations within the State Attorney's office!

Are there really some who believe that Mr. Calderwood? WHO in particular believes that? ON WHAT BASIS do they believe that? WHEN was I in the State Attorney's office to do that?

And if I did do that (which I did not - but if I had I would openly state that I did) - what would have been illegal about that?

Hugh Calderwood said...
Is that true, Mr. Grapski? Will you own up to that also since you believe that is your RIGHT?

It is my right, Mr. Calderwood, if I chose to exercise that right in the manner you describe.

But I did not exert that right in the manner you describe. And I have already stated to you that I have not recorded any interactions with the State Attorney.

If I were going to record the State Attorney - whom I have not spoken with in this matter (and I have not spoken with either Geff Fleck or Spencer Mann on this either) - I would have done so as I did with Clovis Watson - by placing the recording device in plain site and turning it on as we began our discussion. That, sir, is not - as hard as it is for you to admit it - not a violation of the law.

Florida Statute 934 makes it illegal to "unlawfully intercept wire, oral, or electronic communications."

There is no requirement that the interception be done by a recording device.

Merely LISTENING TO the communication is a violation of the law. If the person took NOTES of the intercepted communication - that would be as much an "illegal recording" as a tape recording. If there was a court reporter transcribing the communication - that would be as much an "illegal recording" as the tape recording.

Nothing in that statute relies on RECORDING - but it merely refers to INTERCEPTION.

And interception has a DEFINITION (as does ORAL communication).

Not ALL oral statements are subject to that law. Only oral statements made UNDER CONDITIONS where there is a REASONABLE EXPECTATION OF PRIVACY - which is - PUBLICLY RECOGNIZED AS SUCH.

That means if you are speaking in a public place - as a private individual - and I have a tape recorder on the table next to you - I CAN record you, without your consent, without your knowledge - because you are not taking steps to be "in private." No law is broken in such a situation.

It furthermore exempts PUBLIC MEETINGS (without defining what such are) from EVER being subject to that law.

And in the State of Florida - under the provisions of the Sunshine Laws (the Ethics law - 112, the Public Records Law, 119, and the Open Meetings Law, 236 - and under the Constitution of Florida (and under the United State Constitution - and particularly the 4th Amendment and the right to privacy) - there is NO REASONABLE EXPECTATION OF PRIVACY that is PUBLICLY RECOGNIZED of a public official, engaged in public business, and doing so in a public setting and a public office (and not taking any steps to be "in private").

So you are clearly as ignorant of the law as is Mr. Clovis Watson.

As I have stated Mr. Calderwood - I have not committed any crime in this matter - and I am prepared to stand trial (and I am refusing to make a deal to not prosecute CLovis Watson as the State Attorney's representatives have offered).

I am confident in my rights and my understanding of the law Mr. Calderwood - and particularly my understanding of JUSTICE.

So you can try and try and try as hard as you like to convince those wanting to believe you that I have done something wrong. But I have not. And that will be proven in the end - and I am clearly as confident in this as could be imagined - given my refusal to take a deal which would have guaranteed that I not be prosecuted for any of the four charges that they are "threatening" to charge me with.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 10:29:00 AM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

Ah the typical Stafford Red-Herring ploy. I have never made the above claim: IF something is on a consent agenda; THEN it is a violation of the law - and you know that.

Actually, I know that you did, and following is the quote from you to prove it:

I had assumed, giving the benefit of the doubt to the City of Alachua, that items were being placed on the consent agenda after each of the Commissioners gave their consent to the item to be placed there, having agreed they would pass it, and I believed it was most likely the City Manager who was discussing the matter with each - as it would have been a clear violation of Chapter 286 for more than one Commissioner to discuss these matters outside of a public meeting.

Charlie, I can only say that I feel very bad for you. You are destroying your credibility with your own statements and contradictions.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 10:35:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Just to clarify the record - for those interested - the two further "potential" charges of 934 (unlawful interception of oral communication) being raised by the City of Alachua pertain to Tara Henderson (Executive Assistant to Clovis Watson) and Alan Henderson (Deputy Clerk under CLovis Watson).

Those charges were not filed originally. They were only filed AFTER the State Attorney's office had possession of the tape, listened to it, and saw 1) they had no case regarding my recording of CLovis Watson; 2) realized that Clovis Watson put himself into a very difficult legal situation (as well as the City) in arresting me; and 3) decided that in order to negotiate a deal they needed a stronger hand - and from what I gather the following occurred:

Spencer Mann discussed this with his good friend Robert Jernigan (Chief of Police in Alachua). Robert Jernigan subsequently discussed this with Clovis Watson. Clovis Watson discussed this with Tara Henderson.

SOMEONE (was it in the State Attorney's office - or did they ask Alachua City officials to take these steps - to keep themselves in the "appearance" of not being involved in what comes next?) then got the Sheriff's office to do an "investigation" into the allegations.

Tara Henderson has never heard the tape. But she was TOLD by Clovis Watson (who learned this when the tape was listened to by the State Attorney's office [this is all in sworn testimony by the way]) that her voice can be heard on that tape discussing her "weight."

I had no idea that was on the tape - as I could have cared less. Certainly I was not intending to tape such a conversation.

This conversation occurred IN CITY HALL at the time I was IN CLOVIS WATSON'S office - recording my interactions with City officials (openly and publicly).

She engaged in a conversation with Eileen McCoy. She did so from her desk - loud enough for all to hear (I wasn't paying attention - but it was loud enough for anyone else anywhere in the offices to hear - including within Clovis Watson's office).

She thus was not EXPECTING privacy. She was speaking in a manner which all could hear. Thus there is no possible violation of the law.

If someone does not want others to hear (or even record what they hear) - the law requires that they make their statements in such as way as to have a REASONABLE (and publicly recognized) expectation of privacy.

Now had I hidden a recording device in the bathroom - and had Eileen and her walked in there and had that discussion - you could make a claim that I violated the law. But as this is not the case - you have no claim.

Alan Henderson is even more amusing. Alan Henderson - operating under the advice given after the recording was heard in the State Attorney's office - wanted to get another charge against me.

Knowing that I was recording my interactions with City officials (I put that in writing, and my recording device was in plain site) - Alan Henderson decided to STOP my inspection of public records arbitararily and without a legal basis.

He did not want to do that on record (as it was not appropriate) - but more likely he was trying to "set up" a charge against me under a "loose" interpretation of 934 (to say the least).

Alan Henderson walked up to me - I did not request his presence or his voice - and stated on record that he recognized I was recording at the time (there was no secret).

He then ordered me to "turn off the recording." As Mr. Henderson has no legal power to direct me in such a manner - I refused - and told him I was refusing.

He then stated - on tape - that he did "not want to speak on record." I stated that I had not asked him to speak - and he was free to continue saying NOTHING.

Instead he CHOSE to go ahead and speak - and on record he actually stonewalled and denied my completion of my inspection of public records (he recorded himself in the commission of a violation of the law).

He did so of his own volition and with full knowledge that what he said was being recorded.

Now - the State Attorney's office got City Officials to file these as complaints with the Sherrif's office who then forwarded them on to the State Attorney's office who have not actually charged me with these as if they were crimes - but have stated to me that they will not charge me with the Clovis Watson case (because they know they can't win that - because of what Clovis himself says on the tape) - but that if they do prosecute me - they will prosecute me on THESE two charges!!!

And my response to that is - that is attempted blackmail, that is inappropriate for the State Attorney's office to do, and that none of those is a crime - and they are really sticking their necks out on a limb to try and make this go away for CLovis Watson.

Why is the State Attorney's office (someone with influence WITHIN the State Attorney's office) trying so hard - and willing to violate the law and individual citizen's rights - in order to try and PROTECT Clovis Watson from civil prosecution?

 
At Sat Aug 12, 10:43:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Sorry Stafford,

You can try and try and repeat - then reconstruct until that is defeated - then repeat again. I have seen your weak debating skills for far too many years to be surprised by them - but they are as unconvincing now as they ever were.

Stafford says:
Stafford Jones said...
Ah the typical Stafford Red-Herring ploy. I have never made the above claim: IF something is on a consent agenda; THEN it is a violation of the law - and you know that.

Actually, I know that you did, and following is the quote from you to prove it:

I had assumed, giving the benefit of the doubt to the City of Alachua, that items were being placed on the consent agenda after each of the Commissioners gave their consent to the item to be placed there, having agreed they would pass it, and I believed it was most likely the City Manager who was discussing the matter with each - as it would have been a clear violation of Chapter 286 for more than one Commissioner to discuss these matters outside of a public meeting.


Actually Stafford - the last paragraph there does not do what you logically hope for it to do in your first paragraph.

Again: IF Clovis Watson, as City Manager, WERE going around and obtaining the consent of each commissioner first - that WOULD be a violation of the law.

BUT Clovis Watson is not violating the law in that manner.

HOWEVER the City IS violating the law by MIS-using the Consent Agenda to legislate not only outside of the Sunshine (but in this case - without the Commission ever even participating in the legislation - it all is decided by ONE MAN (who is getting his direction from someone OTHER THAN the commission) - Clovis Watson.

That is far more egregious a violation of the law than the other possibility.

Can items be adopted via a consent agenda in Florida? Yes. Can ANY and ALL items be adopted via a consent agenda? No.

What is a consent agenda used for - even outside of FLorida where there are no Sunshine laws? It may only properly be used for ROUTINE matters of a NON-CONTROVERSIAL nature.

Thus - if it is Secretary's Day - and the City decides to spend $50 getting flowers and cards for the secretaries. They do not have to do so in an open, public, and publicly noticed meeting - with full discussion in public - and with the public given an opportunity to participate.

IF, however, the City wants to give a PAY RAISE to commissioners - that needs to be done (well - it can't be done retroactively - as they have done - but that is a different violation of the law) in a FULL, OPEN, PUBLIC meeting - with the matter PUBLICLY NOTICED, and the PUBLIC entitled to observe EVERY STEP in the decision making process and afforded the RIGHT to SPEAK on the matter and thus PARTICIPATE in the decision making process.

This is how the City is violating the law Stafford. Not the red-herring you keep trying to make up.

Stafford then says:

Charlie, I can only say that I feel very bad for you. You are destroying your credibility with your own statements and contradictions.

Actually Stafford - I am not. There is not a single contradiction in there - even though you say there is (but fail to demonstrate it) - and there is nothing about losing credibility by exposing the weak arguments, inconsistencies, red-herrings, and factual flaws in your statements.

You sir, are the only one here losing credibility (well - so are Ward Scott and Hugh Calderwood - but that is another matter).

 
At Sat Aug 12, 10:46:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Jones,

I have openly challenged you to a duel of our knowledge of the law. You have failed to take the challenge. Why?

You state that the above cited email from me constitutes a violation of the open meetings law.

I have stated that you are wrong.

Please, Mr. Jones, file an open meetings lawsuit on the basis of that email - I do not believe the statute of limitations has expired.

Put your money where your mouth is, Mr. Jones. File this as a lawsuit.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 11:01:00 AM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

Mr. Grapski, if I file anything, it won't be a lawsuit. It will be a complaint with the Florida Ethics Commission, not a lawsuit.

In any case, I am finishing up the Florida Elections Commission complaint against you, now, and care to only work on one thing at a time where you are concerned.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 11:07:00 AM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

More strange logic from Charlie:

(A)Stafford's interpretation of Charlie's view of how the consent agenda was being used:

According to you, if something is on a consent agenda, it is a violation of the open meeting law, because the commissioners must have communicated their consent. . .

(B) Now, Charlie's statement about the consent agenda:

I had assumed, giving the benefit of the doubt to the City of Alachua, that items were being placed on the consent agenda after each of the Commissioners gave their consent to the item to be placed there, having agreed they would pass it, and I believed it was most likely the City Manager who was discussing the matter with each - as it would have been a clear violation of Chapter 286 for more than one Commissioner to discuss these matters outside of a public meeting.

Charlie says those two things aren't the same thing.

It looks like A=B to me. Any other opinions?

 
At Sat Aug 12, 11:29:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Stafford Jones said...
Mr. Grapski, if I file anything, it won't be a lawsuit. It will be a complaint with the Florida Ethics Commission, not a lawsuit.

In any case, I am finishing up the Florida Elections Commission complaint against you, now, and care to only work on one thing at a time where you are concerned.

Sat Aug 12, 12:01:46 PM

Mr. Jones,

On the matter of this email - file it wherever you want (it is not a violation of chapter 112 so it would not be subject to the Ethics Commission). But it is not a violation of 286.

As for your attempt to make an issue out of the election matter - grasp at straws all you like Mr. Jones.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 11:33:00 AM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

What straw would that be? Your report still isn't filed.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 11:36:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Oh Stafford, you are so predictable - here is another long time tactic of you - get criticized and proven wrong - and then you try and make it as if YOU were the one criticizing successfully the person who just exposed you! Its predictable - but its not very successful.

Lack of Logic - is what I have demonstrated from you. So you say "more strange logic" from me. So pathetic.

Stafford said:
Stafford Jones said...
More strange logic from Charlie:

(A)Stafford's interpretation of Charlie's view of how the consent agenda was being used:

According to you, if something is on a consent agenda, it is a violation of the open meeting law, because the commissioners must have communicated their consent. . .

(B) Now, Charlie's statement about the consent agenda:

I had assumed, giving the benefit of the doubt to the City of Alachua, that items were being placed on the consent agenda after each of the Commissioners gave their consent to the item to be placed there, having agreed they would pass it, and I believed it was most likely the City Manager who was discussing the matter with each - as it would have been a clear violation of Chapter 286 for more than one Commissioner to discuss these matters outside of a public meeting.

Charlie says those two things aren't the same thing.

It looks like A=B to me. Any other opinions?

Charlie says:

Not only are they NOT the same thing - but they are entirely different Mr. Jones. The fact that you cannot recognize this - shows the problem that you have entering a debate - you are not as sharp as you think you are.

A = Stafford's claim about what I am claiming (which makes a claim that I do not) - stating that ANY use of the consent agenda IS a violation of Chapter 286.

I have never made such a claim - and that is not the law.

B = what I HAD assumed was taking place - not thinking that Clovis and the City were so stupid to actually be having Clovis Watson UNILATERALLY legislating for the City (which was the City's defense to this assumption - showing that they are breaking the law in a more egregious fashion than even I was willing to venture a guess at).

IF Clovis and the City were doing that - it would be a violation of the Sunshine Law. It would not be equivalent to "A" as you think. As B is the claim that a person cannot act as a "liason" between members of a policy making body as a means to evade the sunshine law; and A is the idea (false) that any item passed via a consent agenda is a violation of that law.

B has no necessary connection to the issue of a consent agenda. A does. So they are clearly not identical.

But what is going on is C - CLovis Watson, without the input or observation of either the five elected commissioners OR the public - is making the legislative decisions for the city of Alachua.

And he is doing so by a misuse of the consent agenda.

A much different claim - and a very real violation of the law (and an absurdity if one has a premise of democratic and/or representative government)

 
At Sat Aug 12, 11:39:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Stafford,

My reports were filed. You even admit (after the fact) that they were filed - but you claim they are in a "limbo" state.

I don't know why they are in a limbo state - but they are in the computer system as you admit (thus I have not WITHHELD them as you are also trying to - inconsistently - claim).

I really do feel sorry for you Stafford - because you are so naive that you get caught into trying to defend the indefensible.

I think you are a good and well-meaning person - although a bit naive and misguided - but you wind up going off on these tangents when you are called out on the factual and logical flaws in your arguments.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 11:53:00 AM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

I never siad that they were filed. I challenge you to prove that I said that they were filed.

I said that you or your treasurer opened them, but you have failed to complete and file them.

The responsibility belongs to you. Nobody else.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 12:20:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Stafford,

You said that they were "in" the EFS and that they were in a "limbo" state.

That means that I submitted them into the system - and did not fail to do that - but for some reason they have not gotten out of a "limbo" state.

I am not sure as to why this is the case and I have inquired as to why that is the case and to have it corrected.

What you originally stated (and intended to give the mis-perception of) was that I had FAILED to and even REFUSED to submit to the Department of State (and thus the public) any and all of my campaign expenditures and receipts.

That was false. I have reported them to the Department of State. And you knew I had done so - but held back on the information you later claimed you knew - in order to try and create the impression of something else being the case (and you never corrected Hugh Calderwood when he, working from your statements, made even more problematic (factually) statements).

 
At Sat Aug 12, 12:23:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Stafford,

I also find it highly amusing (and quite revealing) that the Republican Party of Alachua County:

1) Stands in support of the City of Alachua's government - which you continuously state is run by Democrats.

2) Has an entire web site dedicated to me.

It appears to me that the Republican Party of Alachua County - at least judging by the efforts of its Executive Committee and Chairperson - find me to be the biggest opponent they have in Alachua County - and spend most of their time and resources trying to counter my arguments, positions, and actions.

I truly am far more influential than I could have ever imagined. But hey - if that is how effective I am - so be it. I didn't realize it - but you have proven it in your actions.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 05:00:00 PM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

Charlie, Alachua does have a mayor who happens to be Republican.

Next, we have a site dedicated to the tactics and desired policies of the ALA. You have put yourself front and center of that.

Don't get too full of yourself about this site. The REC hasn't dedicated most of its resources to you. You are a side show, but one with a gift. You have put yourself out there as the typical anti-business Alachua County Democrat.

I, as chairman of the Republican Executive Committee thank you for showing so many in Alachua County what it is to be an Alachua County Democrat.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 11:44:00 PM, Blogger Charlie's Keeper said...

Charlie, are you stupid. Just because you entered the information into the system does not mean you have filed your reports as required.

Goodness, every other candidate can follow the instructions given to them by the state of Florida. For such an intelligent man, it appears you forgot to hit "CLICK: File my report".

You are in violation of the campaign finance law, and you know it. You are just betting that someone does not file a complaint against you.

It is simple. Hell, Stafford has even attempted to help your sorry little butt. However, you can't admit that you made a mistake. This will be your downfall.

Honestly, man up and go hit CLICK, and be done with this nonsense.

 
At Sat Aug 12, 11:52:00 PM, Blogger Charlie's Keeper said...

Another thing, just because you entered them into the sytem - does NOT mean the public can see your campaign finance activity.

Charlie, if the shoe was on the other foot, you would RUN to file a complaint.

You should thank Stafford for at least giving you the chance to fix your mistake.

Now, because of your bravdo, a complaint will be filed against you, and you for evermore will be known as "the former campaign finance reformer that would not file his reports."

AND PLEASE don't feed me that you don't know how to use a computer. You have created your own blog, revised it, and are quite familiar with how to use a computer.

You are nothing but a fraud and you should be ashamed of yourself.

I have never seen such narcisitic behavior as posted above.

 
At Sun Aug 13, 12:29:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Stafford Jones said...
> Charlie, Alachua does have a mayor who happens to be Republican.

Yes it does - and as you point out she is the ONLY Republican - but you seem to find the City of Alachua with its overwhelmingly Democratic City Government to be the MODEL of government for the Republican Party.

> Next, we have a site dedicated to the tactics and desired policies of the ALA. You have put yourself front and center of that.

1) No you do not. This site has nothing to do with the ALA. Nor with its so-called political tactics.

2) I am not a member of the ALA - so no that too is not true.

But the ALA - a diverse group (including many Republicans) - is hardly what you portray it as - nor is this site dedicated to it - as you spend nearly 100% of the time discussing me.

> Don't get too full of yourself about this site. The REC hasn't dedicated most of its resources to you. You are a side show, but one with a gift. You have put yourself out there as the typical anti-business Alachua County Democrat.

Have I really? You have this site and you spend nearly 100% of the time dedicated to discussing me.

I have not put myself out as a typical anything - let alone a typical Democrat. And sorry - your little rhetorical jabs of "anti-business" are also inaccurate. I am anti-corruption - not anti-business. I am opposed to the idea that government is there to support business - rather than people. When it does the latter - you cry fowl - saying that this is welfare. But you stick a corporate middle-man in between the people and the people's money - and then all of a sudden the redistribution of wealth through taxes becomes perfectly legitimate. And you call that a FREE market!!

> I, as chairman of the Republican Executive Committee thank you for showing so many in Alachua County what it is to be an Alachua County Democrat.

Sorry again - I wish I could show them that - but all I have shown them is how CORRUPT the city of Alachua is, how naive the leadership of the local Republican party is, and how much of a pawn of the development industry your party is - and I have shown them that I am willing to stand up to you, your party, the Democratic party, the City government, whoever - when it comes to the public good or corruption.

Now - the next two appear to be "anonymous" comments don't they Stafford. What happened to your policy?

 
At Sun Aug 13, 12:33:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

The issue of the filings is a red-herring. As I have stated - I have filed my financial statements with the state - but there have been some problems with that - and I have inquired as to what has happened.

But where you really go astray is trying to turn this into a means of challenging what I do when I challenge corruption.

First of all - even if all you say is true - that is not an example of corruption.

Secondly - it matters not whether or not I am good, honest, whatever - even corrupt - the point of my criticisms would still stand.

You seem to think that you can win the argument by countering my claims of corruption - by saying "well you are too" - the problem is - that does not alter the corruption I am pointing out.

You also completely misunderstand the FEW legal cases I have taken.

I do not attack public officials - just for the sake of it - and I do not attack them for making MISTAKES.

I only spend my time when CORRUPTION - not simple error - is involved.

 
At Sun Aug 13, 08:47:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At Sun Aug 13, 08:49:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, you did say that the City's use of the consent agenda was illegal because you believed that Mr. Watson was acting as a go between. When it was shown to you that that was not happening you changed your argument that the City was MISUSING the consent agenda by passing SIGNIFICANT LEGESLATIVE actions. We showed that Gainesville was passing consent agendas with millions of dollars of action.

You waffle all over the place and have yet to come up with an argument that makes any sense or shows that the present proceedures (passed in Oct. 2001) are illegal.

Your definition of significant legislation pales in comparison to Gainesville's.

 
At Mon Aug 14, 10:23:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Stafford - I still notice that you have changed your policy on submissions - as "charlie's keeper" is not an identifiable person are they?

Mr. Calderwood - there is no waffling on the issue of the consent agenda as much as you want to try and confuse people with your silliness.

From day one the issue has been the MIS-use (not the mere use) of a procedural item known as the consent agenda.

In any organization - a consent agenda is only properly used for "routine" and "non-controversial" matters of internal housekeeping.

It is NEVER permissible as a method for adopting SUBSTANTIVE LEGISLATION without the board responsible for legislating deliberating those matters.

In Florida - there is a further requirement by law - and that is that all legislative matters be conducted (at all stages of the process) IN THE PUBLIC at public meetings.

That means they need to be advertised as such. That means the items must be available to the public to read BEFORE the meeting (and AT the meeting). That means that the Commissioners may not discuss the matter UNTIL the meeting. IT means the matter must be read into the record AT the meeting - and that discussion must take place on the mater AT the meeting - and that the public must have an opportunity to PARTICIPATE in that discussion AT the meeting - and the vote must be taken publicaly AT the meeting.

The issue was never merely whether or not Clovis was acting as a "go-between" to obtain consent.

That is illegal in Florida. WHy is it illegal? Not just because - but because it would violate the ABOVE description of what is required for the PUBLIC to observe and participate in the decision making process.

So the issue was the process and the public nature of it - not the particulars of Clovis' actions.

In naive defense of this - you guys jumped on the issue of Clovis possibly acting as an intermediary - and were so confident you "defeated" that charge - that you blurted it out for the world to see - "Clovis does not meet with each commissioner to discuss the matter individually."

OK - what did that reveal? That Clovis AND CLOVIS ALONE is setting the policy (and thus legislating) for the City of Alachua - and the City Commission (who is supposed to do this) is effectively meaningless in terms of policy making in Alachua.

That is FAR WORSE of a scenario than I was originally willing to guess was going on - and is as much a violation (actually more) than if Clovis WERE acting as an intermediary.

So no waffling at all Mr. Calderwood.

Your wife is ignorant of the laws. Yet she presides over the city's meetings. Yet despite her ignorance (and she admits that under oath) of the laws - she does not inquire with the City Attorney as to what the laws require (and I believe the City attorney is ignorant of this as well - but then again - I am giving her the benefit of the doubt here - because if she is not, then the situation is far worse than this) - and the City Attorney fails to perform her job of INFORMING the city as to what the laws are they are required to follow.

No waffling - just exposing the contempt of the City Commissioners and City Manager toward the laws and toward the people of Alachua.

 
At Mon Aug 14, 11:23:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski says:

In Florida - there is a further requirement by law - and that is that all legislative matters be conducted (at all stages of the process) IN THE PUBLIC at public meetings.

That means they need to be advertised as such. That means the items must be available to the public to read BEFORE the meeting (and AT the meeting). That means that the Commissioners may not discuss the matter UNTIL the meeting. IT means the matter must be read into the record AT the meeting - and that discussion must take place on the mater AT the meeting - and that the public must have an opportunity to PARTICIPATE in that discussion AT the meeting - and the vote must be taken publicaly AT the meeting.


I know that you won't believe this but the City does all the things that you say. I'm not sure what you mean by the statement that the consent ageda be "read into the record". Please quote the statue that says that verbatim. The reason I ask is that every County and School Board meeting I have attended (including the last combined County/City) that has not occurred.

Otherwise the City is in compliance. The problem that you have is the fact that you have not attended past meetings. Your rant about the City passing a $1M Resolution for the WalMart road was completely wrong. We have pointed your error in another post. You seem to be concerned about the passing of a retrograde raise for commissioners. Once again this had been discussed IN PUBLIC and passed during the budget meetings. The consent agenda item was a bookkeeping item.

Since you seem to be especially concerned with my typos let me point out that mater is spelled matter and publicaly is spelled publicly!

 
At Mon Aug 14, 11:58:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

I have on videotape nearly every meeting of the Alachua City Commission for the past 10 years - so I have SEEN the meetings, believe me.

Furthermore the consent agenda is NOT for matters of policy making (legislation) PERIOD.

All legislation passed by the City Commission MUST be done so in a FULL, OPEN and PUBLICLY NOTICED public meeting with items PROPERLY placed on the AGENDA (not the consent agenda) and READ INTO the record, DELIBERATED UPON (publicly) and with an opportunity for the public to PARTICIPATE - and all of this must be done WITH THE PUBLIC BEING ABLE TO OBSERVE (all steps in the process).

Placing matters that MUST BE PASSED by a vote of the City Commission - that are legislative in nature - on the consent agenda is a violation of the law.

Furthermore - PROHIBITING members of the public from speaking about matters on the consent agenda prior to their adoption - is ILLEGAL.

That is what your wife is doing - very consciously - as mayor of the City of Alachua - she is consciously defying the law - in such a way as to consciously DENY the public its RIGHT to observe AND participate in the decision-making process.

 
At Mon Aug 14, 11:59:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

The County Commission does NOT engage in the practice that the City of Alachua does with regard to the MIS-use of the consent agenda process.

 
At Mon Aug 14, 12:01:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Indeed I believe that Commissioner Mike Byerly asked whether citizens were going to be given an opportunity to speak to matters on the consent agenda PRIOR to their being adopted - at that joint meeting - and your wife just hummed and hawed a bit - and then agreed to do that (which is what she REFUSED to do when >> I << asked for this via the parliamentary procedures adopted by the City of Alachua as its rules of orders (thus when I made a point of order and a parliamentary inquiry)).

She seemed a bit perturbed at this request - but conceded to it - but it is apparent she did so because of it being requested by a County Commissioner.

Your wife seems to have the attitude that CITIZENS are somehow beneath her and should only speak when spoken to.

I find that kind of attitude by public officials to be patently offensive and undemocratic.

 
At Mon Aug 14, 12:03:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

A final vote on a matter - regardless of whether it had been "discussed" previously - is NOT a "bookkeeping" matter.

Nice try. But your wife is incorrect on that - and this is an attempt by your wife to HIDE the public's business behind closed doors and allow public policy to be set by persons the public is unable to watch or know who is making the decisions.

The time has come for a "clean sweep" in Alachua - removing all of the corrupt and incompetent actors - including your wife - and restoring legitimacy to its government.

 
At Mon Aug 14, 12:11:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

When I said it had been discussed I meant it was voted on but you should know that since you have all those DVDs.
I have been to other County Commission meeting and the public was NOT asked to comment on the consent agenda. Byerly only did that since he is your friend and was in Alachua. We all know that.

 
At Mon Aug 14, 01:20:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mike Byerly asked for comments to be allowed - because it is REQUIRED (and is normally done in all other municipal meetings as well as the County Commission) BEFORE the items can be adopted (voted upon).

That is the procedure that your wife REFUSED to allow when I, as a citizen, asked under the rules.

Your wife and Clovis have set up the Commission's agenda WITH THE INTENT of denying the public the ability to observe and participate in the decision making of nearly ALL items legislated by the City Commission.

Your wife and Clovis have set up a form of government that is undemocratic and ILLEGAL under the laws of FLorida - and that is intended to EXCLUDE the public from the process and to DENY its right to oversee all public business.

 
At Mon Aug 14, 08:49:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, I go to a number of government meetings including the County and School Board. I have never heard any call for citizen comments on the consent agenda before Mr. Byerly did it for our joint meeting. He certainly didn't do it at the meeting with the SRWMD challenge.

I went back and looked at three County Commission Meeting agendas and three minutes of past meetings. I will post one of each. All tree of each were the same:

Agenda:
CALL TO ORDER

ADOPTION of the AGENDA


Minutes:
Mr. Reid stated that Commissioner Long added a back up letter to item 24R, authorization to support Commissioner Rodney J. Long's candidacy for the Florida Association of Counties Vice Presidency and The National Association of Counties Board of Directors and that an item be added under the County Manager Reports regarding a request for funding from the Historical Commission.

Commissioner Byerly moved to defer item 12C, a request to approve the Finance Report and to approve the ranking and authorize staff to negotiate an agreement for RFP #06-291: Engineering Services for County Project #6336 to the May 9, 2006 Regular Meeting. The motion carried 4-0 with Commissioner DeLaney out of the room.

ADOPTION OF THE AGENDA

Commissioner ¬¬¬Chestnut moved adoption of the agenda, as amended. The motion carried 4-0 with Commissioner DeLaney out of the room.

The motion to approve the agenda includes the public hearing agenda and all items and recommended action on the consent agenda.

(The approved amended agenda documents are attached to and made a part of these minutes.)

 
At Mon Aug 14, 09:03:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski says:

Mike Byerly asked for comments to be allowed - because it is REQUIRED (and is normally done in all other municipal meetings as well as the County Commission) BEFORE the items can be adopted (voted upon).

Quote from The Florida Municipal Officials' Manual:

1. Open-Meeting Requirements
Since 1967, the Florida Legislature has required that most government businesses be conducted "in the sunshine,"- that is, in an open and public manner. A key element of that policy is found in s. 286.011, FS., known as the "Government-in-the-Sunshine-LAw," which requires that the meetings of any agency or authority of a city government shall be open to the public....
Although citizens must be allowed to attend all meetings of the public body, there is no requirement that citizens be allowed to participate (this bolding is in the article, I did not add it) in these meetings. However, in practice, citizen participation is routinely permitted, particukarly at the public hearings and legislative meetings.

Once again you are wrong in YOUR interpretation of the law.

 
At Thu Aug 17, 01:29:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Actually Mr. Calderwood,

Citizens do INDEED have a right to participate in the process by law.

What kind of participation, how and when, to what extent are unfortunately not clearly defined (and thus those who are in official positions who do not like having the public participate - such as your wife - try and limit it).

But the right to 1) OBSERVE; and 2) GIVE INPUT INTO the policy making process has clearly been established - and upheld - by the law.

You are simply as ignorant on the law as is your wife.

She seems to have only read that manual recently - and she has consistently brought it out to support her position on consent agendas. But she does not even realize that this manual does NOT support her position on that either.

 
At Thu Aug 17, 01:31:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

You continue to conflate two issues: consent agendas & the misuse of consent agendas.

The County properly utilizes consent agendas to adopt ROUTINE and NON-CONTROVERSIAL matters. Thse are NOT matters of substantive legislation - as are the items that your wife allows to be adopted by nothing more than the consent of Clovis Watson.

 
At Thu Aug 17, 01:33:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

The other little fact which you conveniently overlook is that even when items are PROPERLY on the County's consent agenda - any citizen rising to speak on any matter on the County's consent agenda is RECOGNIZED. And items which members of the public object to being on the consent agenda - even if appropriately dealt with there (until there is "controversy" - meaning someone wishing to speak) - are removed and placed on the regular agenda.

There is a fundamental difference between that and what your wife is doing.

 
At Thu Aug 17, 08:37:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, you certainly have cit was hanged your tune. Where is your REQUIREMENT that the consent agenda be open the public before it is approved? If it was a REQUIREMENT it would be on the published agenda. Show us the case law that says that the consent agenda has to be open to the public for their imput.

I am well aware of the case law and it concerns quasi-judicial matters, not the consent agenda.

You have FAILED to show us what consent items were of a SUBSTANTIAL LEGISLATIVE nature. Your example of the approval of the City taking over maintenance of the Wal Mart road was completely false as was the retro raises. Give us examples.

 
At Fri Aug 18, 11:21:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

Your ignorance of the law is apparent. But your arrogance of refusing to find out what the law is regarding public business is more telling.

You are not interested in what is right and what is wrong. You are not interested in what is legal or what is illegal. You are not interested in what is true or what is false.

All you are interested in is trying to create enough misinformation so as to give the appearance that your wife is doing her job properly.

The use of a consent agenda is only legitimately (anywhere) used for NON-CONTROVERSIAL and ROUTINE matters of a non-substantive nature (these are by definition "controversial" - in other words - they need to be discussed).

Routine matters are things such as purchasing flowers on Secretaries Day. There is no need for a formal hearing on the matter in public.

They do not include LEGISLATIVE matters of public policy.

In Florida, however, beyond the mere normal and appropriate uses of a consent agenda - there is a Sunshine Law.

THat set of laws requires that all public business be done IN THE SUNSHINE (with the public being able to observe and participate).

No item of legislation may be passed WITHOUT a full, formal, public meeting - in which the matter is read into the record, the matter is revealed to the public, and the public has a right to participate. Indeed all of the steps in the deliberative process - and not only the actual final step (approval) must be done in the Sunshine.

Furthermore the consent agenda is an attempt to take the ENTIRE matter outside of the Sunshine - including the actual vote for passage.

Your reference to the case law only shows your complete and utter ignorance of this matter.

No, the sunshine law does not have a limitation so that it only applies to quasi-judicial hearings.

It applies to ALL PUBLIC BUSINESS.

 
At Fri Aug 18, 03:13:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, you are the one who is confused. I asked you to cite case law that says the public is REQUIRED to be able to participate on approval of the agenda. You have failed to do so. I was not talking about the Sunshine Law.

Also, I asked you to give us examples of consent agenda items that meet your DEFINITION of a legislative and controversal nature. You might also tell us why the County passed a $5M item on their consent agenda.

 
At Sat Aug 19, 01:52:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood - I don't mind amusing myself with trivialities. I do prefer real debates and discussions.

But you have really got to get a clue here.

The issue of the consent agenda - IS - and issue of the sunshine law.

But I had assumed that you knew enough about that law to realize that.

The sunshine Law is actually a SERIES of laws - not just one statute.

Included among its provisions is the OPEN MEETINGS concept.

You know - when the PUBLIC has a right to know what is decided by the PUBLIC body (public servants).

They thus have a RIGHT to:

1) OBSERVE (at minimum - and this is denied with the consent agenda);

2) PARTICIPATE (yes - its not the same level of participation as a Commissioner - but you confuse that difference as a disqualification. Commissioners have more opportunities to speak - but not more RIGHTS to speak. The PEOPLE rule (are supposed to rule) in this country, Mr. Calderwood.

Get used to it. Its about to come back into fahsion after far too long of a hiatus.

 
At Sat Aug 19, 07:25:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Once again:

Mike Byerly asked for comments to be allowed - because it is REQUIRED (and is normally done in all other municipal meetings as well as the County Commission) BEFORE the items can be adopted (voted upon).

Mr. Grapski, you can bloviate all day long. I asked you for case law to support your statement. Once again you have FAILED to do so.

You claim to have years worth of Alachua consent agendas yet you FAIL to give us examples of when they passed legislation that way. The last time you claimed that they approved $2M for a road for Wal Mart. You were shown to be totaly wrong. Care to try again?

 
At Sat Aug 19, 07:42:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Care to comment? From the AG website:

"Although not directly considering the Sunshine Law, the court in Jones v. Heyman, 888 F.2d 1328, 1333 (11th Cir. 1989), recognized that "to deny the presiding officer the authority to regulate irrelevant debate and disruptive behavior at a public meeting--would cause such meetings to drag on interminably, and deny others the opportunity to voice their opinions." Thus, the court concluded that a mayor's actions in attempting to confine the speaker to the agenda item in the city commission meeting and having the speaker removed when the speaker appeared to become disruptive constituted a reasonable time, place and manner regulation and did not violate the speaker's First Amendment rights".

 
At Sat Aug 19, 07:55:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski says:

Mr. Calderwood - I don't mind amusing myself with trivialities. I do prefer real debates and discussions.

So where is the debate? All I read is poor attempts to attack me (which you say you never do).

 
At Sat Aug 19, 11:09:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

Just picking and choosing a legal opinion is not sufficient to prove your point.

That reference you cite is irrelevant to the matter at hand.

What your wife was doing was not maintaining order - but denying speaking rights and ignoring the rules of procedure.

You conflate the role of the chair to keep debate flowing and the role your wife played in denying the Sunshine law.

I think it is clear, Mr. Calderwood, that you have no respect for the Sunshine Law and do not find it a good law.

Thus you want to interpret it away.

Normally this is what you call "judicial activism" - but you only do this when you DON'T like what the judges are doing.

You are about the least consistent "conservative" that I have ever come across. But then again - I think you have no clue what conservative political philosophy is all about.

 
At Sat Aug 19, 04:25:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Play it again Sam:

Once again:

Mike Byerly asked for comments to be allowed - because it is REQUIRED (and is normally done in all other municipal meetings as well as the County Commission) BEFORE the items can be adopted (voted upon).

Mr. Grapski, you can bloviate all day long. I asked you for case law to support your statement. Once again you have FAILED to do so.

You claim to have years worth of Alachua consent agendas yet you FAIL to give us examples of when they passed legislation that way. The last time you claimed that they approved $2M for a road for Wal Mart. You were shown to be totaly wrong. Care to try again?

And we are still waiting for the video of the Mayor refusing to sign a non-binding, non-legal disclosure of finanial interests.

 
At Sat Aug 19, 05:04:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

I have cited case law and attorney general opinions before and into the record before your wife.

You also love to play little semantic games - for example this idea of the $2 million dollar road.

It WAS on the consent agenda. It was taken OFF of the consent agenda.

But it never should have BEEN on a consent agenda in the first place. And it was a result of my raising the issue - that this matter was brought to attention - and addressed regarding being on the consent agenda.

I don't have to do the legal work for you. I know the law - you don't.

 
At Sat Aug 19, 06:31:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, you have again FAILED to support your arguments. You want a debate but FAIL to debate. We have asked you to support your claims and we get bloviating. Give us this case law you claim. Obviously you have it. Why the stall?

You claimed that Resolution was a legislative item placed on the consent agenda. It was not. The City has proceedures to have items taken off the consent agenda. Your argument only proves the City's proceedures were followed, not that the item was a legislative item which it was not. You are playing a game of switching apples for oranges.

You have yet to point out a legislative item passed on the consent agenda.

And we are still waiting for that famous video you promished us.

 
At Sun Aug 20, 07:59:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

I didn't promise you a video - I said I MIGHT put it up if I had a chance.

I DID provide you with the DATE which is what you asked for.

Your attempt at semantic games of "resolution" vs. "legislation" is also pathetic.

Nearly all of the items that the City has placed on the consent agenda the past year have been LEGISLATIVE items - whether they are called "resolutions" or not.

The handbook reference to "resolutions" is irrelevant. The LEGAL definition of legislation is what matters.

Your wife is deliberately breaking the law - in a manner designed to pass legislation WITHOUT the public knowing, WITHOUT the public having an opportunity to give their input, and even WITHOUT the commissioners ever deliberating the matter.

That is just plain PATHETIC.

But you think that is just fine. Let's see how much the PUBLIC feels about this when they are told the TRUTH.

I think your wife's political career is about to end. As it should.

 
At Sun Aug 20, 09:20:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski says:

Nearly all of the items that the City has placed on the consent agenda the past year have been LEGISLATIVE items - whether they are called "resolutions" or not.

The handbook reference to "resolutions" is irrelevant. The LEGAL definition of legislation is what matters.


What is pathetic is your FAILURE to give us examples of items that YOU believe are legislative.

Also, give us YOUR definitions of legislative and resolutions. Give us your qualifications that would convince us that we sould believe you when yours are in conflict with the AG.

 
At Sun Aug 20, 09:39:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski says:

I didn't promise you a video - I said I MIGHT put it up if I had a chance.

I DID provide you with the DATE which is what you asked for.


Wrong, we asked for evidence to support your accusation that the Mayor refused to sign a non-binding, non-legal request for financial interests TWICE! So far you have provided none. You said that you had the video. Where is it?

And we are still waiting for your case law proof that the City is REQUIRED to permit citizen input into the passing of the consent agenda.

 
At Mon Aug 21, 02:33:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

Your mind does not seem capable of listening AND understanding:

1) You are mischaracterizing the issue of the disclosure of interests (intentionally).

You are now focusing on the video issue - when I stated I MIGHT place a video, Stafford actually said not to do that, just to provide THE DATE. I provided the date (I have the documents).

Case closed.

Readers should also note the SEMANTIC games you try and play - as in when you first brought this back up - you had to emphasize your QUALIFICATIONS of the issue by stating it was "non-binding" (whatever that means - which tends to suggest you KNOW the incident that I am referring to).

Again - I am not here to do your work for you. I am here to do work for the public good. When the two overlap - you will find me doing the former for you, when it is merely a way for you to gather information as to what I know, have, and intend to do - I am sorry but I am not playing that game.

2) With regard to the Consent Agenda issue - again you are mischaracterizing the issue.

In Florida the law (generally) is that the public has a right to 1) OBSERVE and 2) PARTICIPATE in all levels of the decision making process.

Your wife's misuse of the Consent Agenda violate BOTH 1 and 2 (not just 2).

You also seem to confuse STATUTES with CASE LAW (but then again - as I pointed out - you are the first to jump up and yell and scream 'judicial activism' on cue from those you follow blindly at the national level without even having a clue what that is about - and yet you are the first also to act in a manner which would be justifying judicial activism when it suits your needs. You are a hypocrite - you just don't realize it - because you are about as clueless about government and law as one can be).

The SUNSHINE LAWS of Florida require what I am referring to - and I do not need to prove it to you (you can go and read, for example, the Attorney General's Sunshine Manual if you want ample explanation of the law and my point). I will prove it in COURT - and that will be sufficient.

You also fail to recognize, of course, that since I have raised this issue - your wife has CHANGED the way she conducts the city's meetings (why? Are you saying she is just placating me - or is she being INFORMED that she is breaking the law).

And there is nothing SPECIFIC to a "consent agenda" in this issue - it has to do with the ITEM being passed, not the MEANS whereby it is passed.

In this case the MEANS whereby the city is attempting to do its business is INCONSISTENT WITH (and in conflict with) the legal requirements of the Sunshine Laws, and in particular, chapter 286 - the Open Meetings Laws.

 
At Tue Aug 22, 10:52:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski says:

Case closed.

I don't think so. You have made two serious charges.

1) The mayor REFUSED to sign a statement of her "interests" TWICE (whatever that means-I'm still waiting for clarification of what you think I haven't disclosed for my "interests")! You claim that you have the document. It would take you two minutes to put it up on your web site. Where is it?

The definition of nonbinding for your education is: of little or no consequence : unimportant : worthless.

That is exactly what the Diana Rothseiden's little ploy was. Play the video, I encourage you. It will show exactly what I have been saying. You are WRONG, the Mayor was NOT on the commission at that time.

Also, it was of no legal importance. Each commissioner is REQUIRED to file a financial disclosure WHICH IS LEGALLY REQUIRED and has real penalties if false. But you know this and you know that it is a public record. I venture to guess that you have a copy of them in your possession. Put them up on your web site. You claim to be rooting out corruption. That should be the first place you would go. Falsification would bring immediate removal from office, your goal in all this. Why haven't we seen any of this on your web site?

2) You claim it isn't the use but the MIS-USE of the consent agenda. You claim that the City is passing significant "LEGISLATION" via the consent agenda. You claim that you have years of consent agendas in your hands. I have asked you to post just one of these mis-use. You have FAILED to do that. It isn't up to me to find them IT IS UP TO YOU TO PROVE YOUR POINT! Your one example was the Resolution to accept the road AS PRESCRIBED IN THE GRANT THE CITY WAS AWARDED. It did not require the City to expend any money and that acceptance had been passed previously with two PUBLIC MEETINGS IN THE SUNSHINE WITH CITIZEN INPUT! Then you came back with the stupid argument that, "The handbook reference to "resolutions" is irrelevant. The LEGAL definition of legislation is what matters".
You have FAILED to prove your arguments and you are relegated to the pile of INSIGNIFICANCE.

Hugh Calderwood,V.M.D.
Diplomat ACVA

PS- I have attended every commission meeting since you arrived on the scene to carry the ALA banner. I don't see any difference in the way the City is conducting their meetings, including calling your friend OUT OF ORDER when he tried your lame attempt to disrupt the passing of the agenda!

 
At Tue Aug 22, 01:15:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Wm Shakespeare had to deal with the ilk of the Grapski type. He pegged Mr. Grapski succinctly when he said, “Full of sound and fury; signifying nothing” (Macbeth).

They have him figured out over on Alachuapolitix also:

"People already have pegged him as a trouble maker and now the more he talks, the worse he makes it for himself. I believe he's just beating his head up against the wall because not very many people are listening, if any"

 
At Tue Aug 22, 01:18:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Even the writers of the Bible had to deal with the Grapski type. Here is a verse of Scripture from Romans 1:22: “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.”

 
At Fri Aug 25, 09:49:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

You can make all of the silly statements you like. In the end (and that is the point - this will be brought to the end - since I am not intimidated by the tactics you and your ilk regularly employ to keep good citizens from exposing your corruption) - I will prevail in my claims.

The City will be found to be in violation of the law. The City officials will be found to be incompetent, corrupt, and unqualified.

That is what I care about (and what comes after exposing the problem - in terms of proposing a solution).

So you can expose yourself for what you are by continuing to write these attempts at attacks as if it was going to have an effect on me. It will not. I will remain critical of what you are trying to deflect attention away from - and which you are trying to preserve. And as a result - in the end - the truth about what I am criticizing will have been proven.

That's all that matters to me at the moment.

 
At Fri Aug 25, 03:29:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski says:

The City will be found to be in violation of the law. The City officials will be found to be incompetent, corrupt, and unqualified.

You seem to be changing your tone. Before you were saying that you would be proving FRAUD, PEOPLE WOULD BE GOING TO JAIL IN HANDCUFFS, CORRUPTION! From what I saw at the deposition you will FAIL. As I have said before, the City maybe guilty of not shuffling the secret ballots but that doesn't rise to the level of fraud, people won't be going to jail. The courts are not looking for a perfect election, just a fair one and you haven't shown anything but a fair election. Your candidate lost, get over it.

I was especially pleased to watch the expressions on your and Mr. Canney's faces when you thought that you had caught Mr. Henderson falsifying Mr.atson's absentee ballot but it was shown to be just a red herring.

From what I hear and read your supporters are getting fed up with your circus antics. It also seemed to me that Mr. Little is also getting fed up with you from the tone of his voice and hand jestures.

I never expected to have any effect on you. No one can change a megalomaniac. Your ego would never allow you to admit that you could be wrong. I present opposing views and facts to show reasonable people you in the RAW. They can make up their own minds if you have any credibility. So far you have FAILED convince anyone but your ALA allies and the Deaniacs of the world (and they only get to read your side).

 
At Sat Aug 26, 12:43:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

Nice try (you love playing little semantic games - sad thing is the competence of anyone who falls for your amaturish attempts at being a little Karl Rove).

No - I have not changed my claims. The election lawsuit WILL prove the election was run INCOMPETENTLY, IMPROPERLY, and FRAUDULENTLY.

The depositions have already proven that the City officials are CLUELESS as to the laws they were supposed to apply - in particular your wife's deposition - in which she showed herself to be simply incompetent and clueless. I believe in time the public should see for themselves how your wife responded UNDER OATH - I think they will think she is the "Rusted Lady" of Alachua - not the "Iron Lady" as you have tried to con up in a little PR move.

As for people being arrested - in time, MR. Calderwood, in time. I can assure you that I will not rest on this matter UNTIL that is a fact.

As for your observations about Henderson's deposition - I don't think your observations will be that of others who eventually might watch Henderson's performance.

As for your claim about the Watson's vote - actually you are incorrect.

This is an INTERESTING fact:

Clovis Watson's vote was NEVER VALIDATED by Pam Carpenter.

Allegedly (and this appears quite odd) Clovis Watson was the FIRST person to obtain an absentee ballot (March 15) - a MONTH BEFORE the election.

But Clovis Watson's ballot was NEVER reviewed by the Supervisor of Elections of ALachua COunty to verify his status as a qualified voter and to analyze his signature.

Alan Henderson testified that he sent several batches of FAX copies of the signatures to the Supervisor of Elections. As the ballots came in.

Clovis' should have been in the first batch then - but it wasn't.

(By the way - I'd like to know how you could have seen my face and Mike Canney's - when you were sitting at the back of the room - with our backs to you - while we were in the front of the room. I'd also like to know how the process of reviewing FAX copies of signatures as a means of validating the signatures could withstand critical scrutiny).

Pam Carpenter sent Alan Henderson THREE documents regarding ALL of the absentee ballots that she reviewed.

THe first two were two sheets of those she CERTIFIED as being valid voters. Clovis Watson WAS NOT ON either of those lists.

The third contained NINE ballots which she could NOT verify.

Clovis Watson was NOT on that list either.

So the Supervisor of Elections never verified Watson's ballot - and therefore it was not a legal ballot.

And it raises the question of WHEN did Clovis actually vote (by the way - what about Henderson's testimony that HE put dates on the ballot envelopes - not the individuals - and then add that to the fact that he put dates on envelopes (and testified that those were the dates the individuals voted) when we KNOW the actual dates of those votes - and they are NOT those that Henderson indicated!).

Now - explain this - on April 11th, at the Canvassing Board meeting (and watson was one of the three members), the Canvassing Board was given Clovis Watson's ballot as one that was REJECTED by the Supervisor of Elections.

And they - without anything but Henderson's word (and without a formal vote - and without Watson recusing himself) - ACCEPTED Watson's vote as valid.

Yet that makes TEN ballots in that category. Henderson only told the Board about NINE - the NINE on the Supervisor of Election's list.

So where did Clovis Watson's ballot come from at the last minute?

Sounds quite fishy to me.

As for the so-called "circus antics" - don't confuse the little seeds of rumors you guys plant with your anonymous posts - for valid views of my supporters.

Any of my supporters who have concerns with me are welcome to discuss them with me - and don't do so via anonymous "attacks."

As for Joe Little - Joe and I have a good working relationship - and our interactions at the deposition are exactly what I am supposed to do there - and have done in all depositions (and trials) I have participated in with Joe Little.

ALL OF WHICH have been SUCCESSFUL by the way, Mr. Calderwood.

Mr. Calderwood - you can go on pretending to yourself (and believing yourself) that you present FACTS and REASON - but you are just a blow hard ignoramous who plays in the sandbox of corrupt politics.

And you USE your wife as a puppet in your little games.

You are a pathetic excuse for a human being - you are one of those who have contributed to the downfall of our society.

You are an irresponsible, unethical actor and I have little but contempt for the few people in the world like you and your ilk.

I am dedicated to removing your influence from the course and direction of our government.

And rest assured - I will not be deterred by your tactics - any of them.

In the end - we will see who prevails over time.

I am confident it will not be you.

 
At Sat Aug 26, 12:49:00 PM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

In addition to the vote by Clovis Watson being highly questionable - have you explained to YOUR friends and allies the matter of the PROVISIONAL ballots.

Did you tell them that FOUR people were denied their right to vote - and Henderson could not explain WHY - other than that HE didn't know about them!

Indeed his job WAS to know about them - but he testified that the Canvassing Board was not given the authority to canvass the PRECINCTS (only the absentee ballots) - and that as long as Henderson was satisfied with the results of the precincts (without even seeing the documents - or verifying the numbers) - that was all they could accept!

And he didn't even bother to report that there were FOUR provisional ballots that the Canvassing Board was required to verify and then count.

Yet they didn't even get them - or even told that they existed.

WE DISCOVERED THEIR EXISTENCE.

And they were never provided in the NUMEROUS attempts to get the records that I and others have made.

The City did not even know about them until the FIRST day of depositions - then MYSTERIOUSLY - they appeared in the documents this past week.

But thats not all folks. Turns out - that when we first got access to these ballots (which were sealed originally - and could only be opened by the Canvassing Board) - all four of them HAD BEEN OPENED!

But they were never reported to or given to the Canvassing Board.

WHO opened them and WHEN?

Henderson, Watson?

My, my, my we have a problem Houston. We have a real problem.

 
At Sat Aug 26, 07:05:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, for a man who says that he doesn't attack people, you are showing yourself to be quite a hypocrite.

No one has said that the election was perfect. Mr. Watson has said that IF errors were made the City would accept the blame. As I keep saying, the courts don't expect perfect elections, only fair ones.

Now that your depositions are over, tell us how the election was stolen? I'll give you Mr. Watson's vote even though the error was Carpenter's to begin with. She was sent the ballot and she never reported any error in it. If she had it would have been corrected. Mr. Henderson didn't catch it either. OH MY GOD, FRAUD, FRAUD, STOLEN ELECTION!!!!

You said:

The depositions have already proven that the City officials are CLUELESS as to the laws they were supposed to apply

How does this support your claim that there was fraud? If they were clueless then they didn't commit fraud, it was accidental. You can't have it both ways.

So tell us exactly how they stole the election. If you throw out Mr. Watson's vote, Mr. Lewis won by 17 votes. The four provisional ballots were split even. That didn't help Mr. Lewis. The 14 touch screen ballots that you want to make such an issue about were 9 for Irby, 5 for Lewis. That couldn't have stolen the election.

How was the election stolen?

 
At Mon Aug 28, 10:48:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

Regarding the four provisional ballots - you CANNOT count what is PURPORTED to be the votes (allegedly split).

WHO OPENED THOSE BALLOTS AND WHEN?

You see - those ballots were ILLEGALLY opened by someone.

And there is no way to know WHAT the ballots inside those envelopes actually contained.

SOMEONE broke the law - not through incompetence, but through malfeasance (perhaps you were involved in the opening of those ballots Mr. Calderwood?).

I believe that act is a FELONY.

Furthermore - when those ballots were not presented to the Canvassing Board, and when the Canvassing Board FAILED to do its job, those voters were DISENFRANCHISED.

This election was a FRAUD.

It needs to be held over again - in a FAIR and COMPETENT manner.

And those who were involved in malfeasance - need to be prosecuted.

And those who were merely involved as incompetent - misfeasance and nonfeasance - need to find a new job.

That includes your wife, Mr. Calderwood.

 
At Mon Aug 28, 10:58:00 AM, Blogger Charles Grapski said...

Mr. Calderwood,

In addition to trying to sweep under the rug the now PROVEN facts of wrongdoing - such as in the provisional ballots ...

You are trying to deflect attention from the SIGNIFICANT facts about Clovis Watson's vote.

What does it say that the ONE VOTE that was NEVER sent to the Alachua County Supervisor of Elections office DURING the election period - but was mysteriously submitted to the Canvassing Board AS IF she had been unable to verify the signature - and is dated as being submitted on March 15th (the FIRST ballot so submitted - allegedly) when we also have testimony under oath that City officials MADE UP DATES and PUT THEM on official envelopes that DO NOT COINCIDE with the actual dates the votes were cast - was that of CLOVIS WATSON:

The City Manager, the Police Commissioner, the City Clerk (responsible for running the elections), the member of the Canvassing Board (who was responsible for overseeing that the results were valid and validly and competently counted and analyzed), and a SWORN POLICE OFFICER ... and ... a known supporter of your campaign with James Lewis ... AND a central figure in the OUTRIGHT FRAUD (such as recruiting people to vote for James Lewis while on the city clock - and forget the fact that their positions were supposed to be one of neutrality) - and then of INTIMIDATING people from TELLING THE TRUTH.

Your defense of Clovis Watson REVEALS you for what you are Mr. Calderwood. And reveals the actual motivation that you have in this "discussion."

 
At Mon Aug 28, 12:23:00 PM, Blogger Stafford Jones said...

Charlie, I understand that it was revealed at the deposition that Clovis Watson's vote was submitted to the Superivor and that the records show the batch in which it went.

The canvassing board then certified a signature that the Supervisor of Elections could not. That is not unusual.

Would you clarify, please? Are you suggesting that Clovis Watson's vote should not be counted because of a possible FAX transmission error, or maybe even a problem in the Supervisor's office?

Wouldn't you agree that a voter's rights to have their ballot counted should be guarded against clerical issues? If so you do agree, then you also have no choice but to agree with Bud Calderwood's statements that the courts expect fair elections, and not necessarily perfect ones.

Have you ever examined every last discrepancy or flawed judgement out of the other municipalities or even the Supervisor of Elections. Please do it. You won't find a perfect election, anywhere, and you will find plenty for you to complain about.

 
At Mon Aug 28, 04:08:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Let's take a look at Mr. Grapski's latest rants and SHOUTS!!!!!

Furthermore - when those ballots were not presented to the Canvassing Board, and when the Canvassing Board FAILED to do its job, those voters were DISENFRANCHISED.

Whether these voters were disenfranchised or not has not been established. It is irresponsible for you to claim as much with what is known so far. As you know those votes did not meet the law that you claim is so important. Those voters could not prove who they were as they did not present proof of identity. You are aware that the ALA has made claims that "dead" people vote in Alachua elections so laws were enacted that required proof of identity (you do want fair elections, don't you?) They signed the envelope that stated WHY their vote wouldn't be counted and what they needed to do in order for it to be counted. Their votes would only be "disenfranchised" if they returned with identity. You need to prove that set of facts before you go flying off the handle.

Mr. Graoski bloviates:

Allegedly (and this appears quite odd) Clovis Watson was the FIRST person to obtain an absentee ballot (March 15) - a MONTH BEFORE the election....


and is dated as being submitted on March 15th (the FIRST ballot so submitted - allegedly) when we also have testimony under oath that City officials MADE UP DATES and PUT THEM on official envelopes that DO NOT COINCIDE with the actual dates the votes were cast - was that of CLOVIS WATSON:


I don't know if this is just spin or if you are losing it. You were at the deposition. You heard Mr. Henderson say that he batched the absentee ballots and sent them in in groups so as not to waste the SOE office. IT WASN'T SUBMITTED ON MARCH 15TH! Where is your common sense? It makes perfect sense to reasonable people that the date Mr. Watson PICKED UP THE BALLOT and the date it was FAXED would be different. The same can be said for the date a voter picked up a ballot and the day it was returned in the mail WOULDN'T BE THE SAME!

I love this rant:

AND a central figure in the OUTRIGHT FRAUD (such as recruiting people to vote for James Lewis while on the city clock - and forget the fact that their positions were supposed to be one of neutrality) - and then of INTIMIDATING people from TELLING THE TRUTH

You will have to prove that Mr. Watson "recruited" people to vote for Mr. Lewis while on the clock. I think that will be a major stumbling block for you unless you bring forth an ALA person willing to perjure themselves.

As an aside, the Mayor tells of when she was deposed and Mr. Little asked, "Isn't it true that you encouraged people to vote"? Her answers was, "absolutely, I encourage people to vote all the time". Then Mr. Little shuffled his papers and said AH,ah, ah, let me rephrase that question. And another ALA urban ledgend starts.

Your defense of Clovis Watson REVEALS you for what you are Mr. Calderwood. And reveals the actual motivation that you have in this "discussion."

DANG, you caught me again. How dare I have a different opinion then The Great Grapski!

 
At Mon Aug 28, 07:00:00 PM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Still waiting for a coherent answer as to how the election was stolen.

 
At Wed Aug 30, 07:26:00 AM, Blogger Hugh Calderwood said...

Mr. Grapski, I see that you put up a video of Rod Smith. You claim that you have had the video of the Mayor refusing to sign a nonbinding, non-legal financial disclosure for some period of time. We have asked you to put that up on your site. Why did you put up the Smith video now but failed to put up the other one?

And I am still waiting for your explaination of how the election was "stolen".

 

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