During the Community Forum at last night’s City Council Meeting both myself and several others of our community gave our reaction to a 2-page letter that our City Council Chairman wrote in which he goes on at length as to why condominium owners should not support either my husband, Larry Sacher, as well as Ken Honecker and Amadeo Petricca in their campaign for City Council. The Chairman’s letter contains complete fabrications such as “If Honecker and Petricca are elected they, with Sacher’s support, will move to rescind the consultant’s report and go back to their original recommendation favoring the single-family homeowner.” He also demonstrates that he is omniscient citing (in reference to Larry Sacher) “His obvious motivation in starting the group (Marco Island Property Owners) was to set himself up to run for Council and represent the interests of the single -family homeowners vs. what he describes as the ‘Condos and Business Interests who he believes have controlled Marco Island.” He further states “If elected Mr. Sacher would work to have the condos pay more and the single-family homeowners pay less,, which he believes is ‘fair’ even though there is no independent study to justify his claims.” It’s also significant to note that some of the condominium managers/associations have added a cover letter to the Chairman’s letter in which they state a fantasy that if Sacher, Honecker, Petricca are elected that they would double the monthly rates for all condo owners, and further, double the cost of reclaimed water.. I don’t know if the Council Chairman is responsible for these fantasies, BUT THERE IS NOT ONE IOTA OF TRUTH IN THESE STATEMENTS!
As I pointed out during my comments, our Councilors are elected as ‘at-large representatives, meaning that they are elected to represent ALL the members of our community, and I specifically asked the Chairman why, therefore, was he only addressing his comments to condo owners; he gave a response in which he asked the City Attorney to affirm his right to state his opinion, to which the Chairman added “and I can even include my title as Chairman”, yet he never answered my question as to why, while he accused the other 3 of bias, clearly is guilty of the very same thing he accused them of! Further, the Chairman also declined to respond to my question as to why, since there are 6 others also running for Council, he did not address the 1 incumbent that he did not endorse, or the other non-incumbent who is also running; he also did not answer this question.
Since our Council Chairman consistently proclaims that he only deals with “facts”, in addition to completely rejecting the fantasies mentioned above, I’d also like to add some facts: the Chairman is correct that when Larry Sacher and Ray Seward co-founded the original Marco Homeowners, their initial materials did address the need for representation for the single-family homeowners, since there was none, and further, that one of their objectives was to address the then on-going deliberations regarding the utility rates, however as another citizen, David Scarborough pointed out during his talk, the Organization very quickly realized that there were so many other issues that needed addressing on Marco Island that they not only changed the name to Marco Island Property Owners, but they publicly stated their objective of representing ALL MARCO ISLAND PROPERTY OWNERS!
Marco Island does not need any more divisiveness. While the Council Chairman is entitled to his opinion, and while it might not be against the law for him to conduct himself the way he has, it also raises the question of who is creating divisiveness – Larry Sacher who has worked non-stop for 2 years to represent all property owners or the Council Chairman who is only speaking on behalf of the condos? whether or not the citizens of Marco are entitled to representatives who see their job as serving ALL of Marco, not just one group.