Sunday, December 16, 2018

Meet the Marco Island City Council Candidates


On Election Day, November 6, 2018, Marco Islanders will choose among five candidates to fill three seats on the Marco Island City Council.

To bring our readers fair and unbiased information about the city council candidates, Coastal Breeze News asked each candidate to answer the same 10 questions. Their responses have been printed verbatim.

For more information on the General Election, visit colliervotes.com.


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Erik Brechnitz

Jim Richards

Victor Rios

Jerry Swiacki

Sam Young

Erik Brechnitz

Erik Brechnitz

1.  Describe your past contributions (volunteer work) for the Marco Island community.

  • Chairman, Marco Island Special Tax District 2004-2016
  • Chairman, Marco Island Planning Board 2017-2018

2. Do you feel the perceived dysfunction of the Marco Island City Council has prevented the hiring of a permanent city manager?

What do you mean perceived? I just finished watching the Specially Called City Council Meeting of October 4th. I invite your readers to view the video of that meeting. If that is not dysfunction, I do not know what is. And for the umpteenth time, sufficient votes could not be garnered to hire the manager candidate. City managers who might be potential candidates are likely to tune into those videos.

3. What one proposal by the Ad-hoc Parking Committee would you champion?

I think it is important that we manage our expectations with regard to the proposed parking solutions. No matter what solutions are proposed, our citizens will not be able to park next to their favorite restaurant during season. However, a couple of recommendations are worthwhile considering. Permitting alley parking, which was allowed on Marco Island until a few years ago, is an option worth considering. Also permit stickers for Marco residents allowing them preferred parking places is another option that should be discussed.

4. How will you help the public regain trust in local government after the recent scandals?

Hire an experienced professional City Manager. Councilors treating one another with courtesy and respect.

5. What future capital expenditures do you foresee the council will have to address?

We need to continue repaving the streets that were impacted by the STRP program. Provide capital funds for the final solution for Veterans Park and provide funds for the capital expenditures needed to comply with storm water projects. Remodeling of the Fire Station is another project for which we need to provide funds. There is new office space required for the Water Utility, most of which can be financed by internal cash flow.

6. In addition to testing, what is your proposal to protect Marco Island’s water quality?

70% of Marco homes have access to the water. So, maintaining water quality in our canals is critical to our Island’s future. Monthly testing, proper enforcement of our fertilizer ordinance and restoring the integrity of our swales is a good beginning. Before the Island commits major tax dollars much more data needs to be collected. Most of the opinions being offered today are not data driven because
there is not sufficient data.

7. What motivates you to take on the challenge of being a city councilor for four years?

Above all, I am worried that without proper planning and vigilant attention, we could lose the ‘Small Town Island Feel’ that brought us here. I pledge to protect the fragile nature of our barrier island from overdevelopment.

8.  Has present council been remiss in not discussing the county’s upcoming 1% sales tax referendum and its potential uses for Marco Island?

The City Council has actually discussed this previously in an April meeting. The City Manager suggested certain capital projects for use of these funds on Marco Island. Many of those projects I outlined in question #5 above. It is estimated that if the referendum passes the City would have approximately $3 million annually for capital projects. I would use some of these funds for those projects and I would also pledge that some of the funds be used to reduce taxes.

9. Why should Marco Island residents vote for you instead of other candidates?

In a word, Experience.

Nancy and I moved to Marco Island 23 years ago and we became permanent residents 6 years later. In my previous life in Illinois, I was Mayor of a medium sized city for 4 years and on its City Council for the 10 years prior to that. In that role, I hired two successful city managers. I participated in 14 budget discussions on operating budgets exceeding $100 million, successfully reducing taxes in many of them. In my professional life I acted as financial advisor on several large bond issues, so I have a full understanding of fund accounting.

10. Please provide a biography.

Civic Achievements

  • As Decatur Mayor, supervised $100 million budget; lowered property taxes during three of four-year term; built $40 million water treatment plant with adjustable rate bond issue.
  • Took over as chairman of bankrupt Decatur Public Building Commission, restructured debt and completed $20 million court renovation without tax increase.
  • Board Chairman, Millikin University and Budget & Finance Committee Chairman.
  • President, Country Club of Decatur. Administered $3 million annual budget.

Civic Activities

  • Macon County Economic Development Foundation
  • 2003-2007 Hideaway Beach Association, Board Member
  • 2005-2007 Hideaway Beach Association, Board President
  • 2004-2016 Marco Island Special Taxing District, Founder and Chairman
  • 2017-2018 Marco Island Planning Board, Chairman

Employment

  • 1962-1972 Managing partner, principal shareholder, MidAmerica Bond & Share Company
  • 1972-1994 Kemper Securities, Inc., Senior Vice President
  • 1994-2006 Morgan Stanley, Senior Vice President, Branch Manager
  • 2006-Present, Senior VP Raymond James & Associates

Education/Military

  • 1960 University of Missouri; BA, Economics and Finance
  • 1960-1966 U.S. Air Force Reserve

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Jim Richards

Jim Richards

1. Describe your past contributions (volunteer work) for the Marco Island community.

I have volunteered my time in our community with the following organizations:

  • Noon-time Rotary
  • Seafood Festival
  • Meals of Hope
  • Marco Island Fire Foundation
  • Marco Island Police Foundation
  • Daily Bread Runs
  • Lunch with Our Friends Over 60 monthly luncheons
  • Weekly mobile food pantry
  • Our Daily Bread Food Pantry
  • Christmas Island Style
  • YMCA volunteer for numerous events
  • Center for the Arts board
  • Beach clean-up

2. Do you feel the perceived dysfunction of the Marco Island City Council has prevented the hiring of a permanent city manager?

Yes, qualified candidates may steer clear of all of the drama here on Marco and the lack of tenure from previous city managers over the past 10 years.

3. What one proposal by the Ad-hoc Parking Committee would you champion?

In looking over the ad-hoc committees recommendations the ones that should have an immediate impact, with a short implementation time frame, are allowance of swale parking on West Elkcam Circle Park Avenue by Veterans Community Park and also swale parking on Bald Eagle from Chalmers to Barfield.

4. How will you help the public regain trust in local government after the recent scandals?

Restoring trust and rebuilding the public’s faith that all is transparent in local government requires an ongoing effort. As local officials, we must make this a priority. Below is how I would achieve:

Honesty: Promoting honesty must go beyond mere ethics training. Honesty must be built into a culture that does not tolerate even small lies.

Efficiency: Making sure that government delivers «value for money.»

Transparency: Allowing citizens to see what is going on themselves through our committees, listening to our committees and the continued citizen input on policy.

Accountability: Advising people what we are going to do and then giving them an accounting of how we did.

Bottom line: Have the council be truthful, efficient, open and honest. All effective relationships are built on trust.

5. What future capital expenditures do you foresee the council will have to address?

Veterans Community Park will require the city to fund the completion of the resident’s vision; the removal of the asphalt parking, addition of the perimeter parking, the lighting, permanent restrooms and perhaps a band shell. Our city buildings are out of date, out of code, not able to withstand a hurricane

and in need of upgrading. The new city manager should be tasked with creating a capital budget for all of the issues.

6. In addition to testing, what is your proposal to protect Marco Island’s water quality?

To begin with enforce fertilizer ordinance and storm water ordinance; compliance is key and more aggressive public education by city staff. Monthly testing in key locations only provides a small snapshot of nutrient loading.

While I am not in favor of county and state integrated programs, we could reach out to the county to make sure Marco can use more Tourist Development Tax grant money for water quality. Keep in mind working with the county takes too long and they have a bad track record of delivering what is best for our waterways. Home rule should be our guiding principle. We have a chance to put together a model program for the protection of our waterways.

7. What motivates you to take on the challenge of being a city councilor for four years?

I am known within the healthcare finance community as a leader within the industry creating new solutions to solve problems. Additionally, I am a strategist and a listener. Marco Island needs a problem solver that will listen to the residents of Marco Island and then work towards solutions.

8. Has present council been remiss in not discussing the county’s upcoming 1% sales tax referendum and its potential uses for Marco Island?

While there has not been much talk about this topic from the dais most people are aware it’s out there. The city council conversations with the county need to be to ensure the city receives a fair share for projects within Marco if this passes, outside the new sheriff’s substation, which is a nice to have for Marco residents, but many other items are needed.

9. Why should Marco Island residents vote for you instead of other candidates?

Because I am a experienced business manager and industry leader who can bring people together and make a positive difference here on the island. I am here to represent what YOU want, not what I want, as I am only vote out of 15,000.

10. Please provide a biography.

Jim Richards, originally from Philadelphia, has been a full time resident of Marco Island for 17 years. Jim is the co-founder and chairman of Capio Partners, LLC a patient finance company headquartered in Atlanta, GA. Jim has worked in or started companies in the healthcare financial space his entire career.

Jim is currently semi-retired while dedicating his free time to his community on Marco Island. Jim and his wife, Allyson, have six children with three calling Marco Island home. Jim and his wife Allyson share a passion for working within our community. Jim and Allyson were recent winners of the American Cancer Society’s Grado Award for their involvement in the American Cancer Society.

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Victor Rios

Victor Rios

1. Describe your past contributions (volunteer work) for the Marco Island community.

Upon moving to Marco Island, I joined the Marco Island Shell Club. This organization makes crafts from shells and sells them to raise money to provide scholarships. I was Treasurer for one year. In 2007 I volunteered for the Marco Island Beach Advisory Committee where I served for more than 3 years and was chairman for 1 year and helped in the beach clean-up campaigns. In 2008 volunteered for the Coastal Advisory Committee and served for 7+ years. The CAC oversees all coastal projects, including beach re-nourishment, dredging, structures to protect our coastline, beach cleaning and the like. I am now representing Marco Island on the TDC (Tourist Development Council), which approves expenditures for beach and coastal projects as well as funding for marketing programs and Museums.

2. Do you feel the perceived dysfunction of the Marco Island City Council has prevented the hiring of a permanent city manager?

The perception of a dysfunctional City Council is only a direct result of the cautious process City Council is trying to use in the hiring of a new city manager. Councilors have spent hundreds of hours reviewing resumes, doing interviews and coming up with procedures to try to get it right. Even the City of Naples has had struggles in the hiring of a new Manager. In addition, the Marco Island City Charter requires a super majority (5 Councilors) to select and hire a City Manager. Not an easy task when you have 7 experienced people from various backgrounds that want to make sure they get it right.

3. What one proposal by the Ad-hoc Parking Committee would you champion?

Solving the Parking problem on Marco Island is a monumental task. That is the reason City Council put together the Ad-Hoc Committee. We have extended the term of the Committee to have them review various proposed solutions. In the meantime, we approved several no-cost solutions and I am currently looking into the proposal to have added CAT service at no cost to users to facilitate moving people in the island which would reduce traffic and allow users to keep their cars in their garages.

4. How will you help the public regain trust in local government after the recent scandals?

Yes, there have been several recent so-called “scandals”; namely, the attempts to place government buildings and hotels in the green spaces of Veteran’s Community Park, unsuccessful attempts at hiring a new city manager as well as some very bad actions by a newly hired manager. As I see it, we can only regain the trust of the public by assuring that everything we do is transparent, that our residents are involved in all major decisions and that council tries to develop strong consensus on their decision making.

5. What future capital expenditures do you foresee the council will have to address?

Our number one priority must be assuring that the quality of our waterways, canals and bays, remains as pristine as possible. That is essential to maintaining property values and our quality of life. Accordingly, there may be several infrastructure projects that may help accomplish this; namely everything, from new stormwater recovery systems to other methods of preventing pollution will be considered.

6. In addition to testing, what is your proposal to protect Marco Island’s water quality?

This is an issue that I have been addressing for at least two years and presented Council with a plan that they will hold a public workshop after a new City Council is seated. My plan includes the following concepts:

Addressing the swales which have deteriorated to the point of being non-functional allowing polluted water to get into our canals and ocean. Also:

a. Increase water testing to monthly instead of quarterly. Being data driven is key to help us better tackle the problem.
b. Enforce our fertilizer ordinance and improving our swales function of filtering away pollutants!
c. Consider imposing a 6-month moratorium on the use of fertilizer.
d. Make sure that all landscapers are licensed, trained and licensed to apply fertilizer.
e. Enforce Storm Water control ordinance 18-07.
f. Encourage that homeowners along waterways to install Ocean habitat mini-reefs.
g. Enforce prohibitions against people living on their boats in bays and local marinas – a known major source of pollution
h. Address the issue of dead fish along our beaches.

7. What motivates you to take on the challenge of being a city councilor for four years?

  1. I am committed to community service; that is, giving back to the community. I feel I have a lot more to give to my community; namely:
  2. Follow up on addressing the water quality issue
  3. Continue working hard to maintain our green spaces and control growth and density concerns.
  4. Help solve the continue parking problem and work with the county to help solve it.
  5. Improve communications with our citizens/taxpayers.
  6. Improve our city staff morale and efficiency
  7. Help to finally achieve the Veterans Community Park improvements as desired by our citizens.
  8. Work with the rest of Council to hire a new City Manager
  9. Address our high water and sewer rates.
  10. Develop improved working relationship with County Commissioners.

8. Has present council been remiss in not discussing the county’s upcoming 1% sales tax referendum and its potential uses for Marco Island?

No, I personally brought that issue up at the March 19, 2018 meeting, and Mr. Gil Polanco, our Finance Director stated that any increase in the sales tax would have to follow the same formula sharing with the city as with the current sales tax formula. Given that answer, I do not believe Council needs to take any further action. Nevertheless, we still must wait until after the November elections to see if it passes. If it does, we will get several millions of dollars over the 7-year period of the proposed tax.

9. Why should Marco Island residents vote for you instead of other candidates?

I have been committed to be a good steward of taxpayers’ money and to make sure that the promises I made when I ran. For example:

I fought for balanced growth and to preserve green spaces. Sponsored and passed legislation to save Veterans Community Park from development.

I committed to fiscal responsibility, maintain essential infrastructure, reign in taxes and reduce debt.

I committed to listen to all residents and taxpayers and I have worked very hard to answer all e-mail and phone call from our citizens and follow up as needed. That includes listening to the taxpayers on all issues and I have done that. I have a track record of “PROMISES MADE…PROMISES KEPT.

I also have outlined on 6 and 7 above what I will be doing for the next four years if elected. I have a proven track record that is verifiable on the record.

10. Please provide a biography.

Born and raised in Cuba, I demonstrated against the Castro government. I became a political prisoner, tortured daily. In the early 1960’s I was released and left for the US. I volunteered for the US Army. Following my service, I received an Honorable discharge.

My lovely wife Joan and I married in 1968 (celebrated our 50th anniversary and renewed our vows this past August at San Marco Catholic Church). We have two sons.

I have degrees in Engineering and a master’s in business. Working in the Aerospace industry, I underwent several FBI background checks and held the highest level of Security Clearance. We became full time Marco residents in 2004.

My commitment is to listen to our citizens, full ethical and honest participation and work for the whole spectrum of citizens, including single family homeowners, condo owners and businesses.

In 2014 I was elected as City Councilor, an Honor, and “Crowning” the “American Dream” I achieved. Serving almost 4 years, I fulfilled my commitments as promised.

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Jerry Swiacki

Jerry Swiacki

1. Describe your past contributions (volunteer work) for the Marco Island community.

I presently serve as Program Director for the Marco Men’s Club, the Marco Island Fire Rescue Foundation Board of Directors and the Marco Island Civic Association Board of Directors, (currently on leave during the campaign). I am the Vice-President of the Marco Island Nature Preserve and Bird Sanctuary and a ten-year member of the Marco Island Christmas Home Decorating Committee. I served on the Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee 2012-2016, two years as Chair. I am the past Vice-Chairman of the Caxambas Republican Club and a graduate of Leadership Marco Class of 2017.

2. Do you feel the perceived dysfunction of the Marco Island City Council has prevented the hiring of a permanent city manager?

Absolutely. The first search for a city manager resulted in Council’s 4-3 vote, not to hire because of poor qualifications. That That was followed by a councilor’s diatribe against the search firm consultant and the consultant stated he would no longer work with the City. After apologies were made, the consultant returned, a manager was hired, and three months later, fired for cause as an accused predator. Next, over the objections of three councilors, Council voted 4-3 to move forward on a candidate search for an interim city manager. The interim city manager vote failed 4-2 for all three final candidates because our Charter requires a supermajority of five votes.

This council does not work together. There has been too much drama and public criticism of our present Interim City Manager.

None of this has gone unnoticed! There are quality search firms that will not work for our City and possibly quality candidates as well. For 20 months, this Council has not been able to hire a professional City Manager.

3. What one proposal by the Ad-hoc Parking Committee would you champion?

I support the Ad-hoc Parking Committee’s “No-Cost Solutions” which has been implemented as a temporary resolution, for parking in swales, commercial district alleyways, and permitted parking in swales in residential areas twice a year for seven days. I would favor the “Low-Cost Solution of a Public-Private Free Transportation Service”, if feasible. The parking problem raises its head primarily during “season”. However, more citizens are living here full time and a free transportation service may alleviate traffic congestion and allow those who have physical disabilities that affect their driving, an opportunity to better navigate about the island.

4. How will you help the public regain trust in local government after the recent scandals?

After 47 years of performing surgery, I understand that it takes a lot of confidence and trust for a person to allow someone to take a scalpel and make an incision into their body to alleviate a problem. To gain that trust, I would apply the following principles to city government:

Listen to the community and advisory committees. They will tell you the issues that need to be addressed.

Examine the issue to better understand the problem.

Investigate the issue by obtaining information and recommendations from appropriate, professional resources.

Evaluate the best recommendations for sensible solutions.

Communicate, educate and discuss the proposed solutions with the community

Together with the Community, develop an action plan to resolve the issue.

5. What future capital expenditures do you foresee the council will have to address?

  • Cleaning our local waterways.
  • Completing the plans for Veterans Community Park.
  • Infrastructure issues such as roadways and control of storm water drainage.
  • Repair or replace Fire House Station 50.

6. In addition to testing, what is your proposal to protect Marco Island’s water quality?

The City of Marco Island should declare a “State of Emergency” to emphasize our commitment to solve water quality issues. We need more frequent, effective and comprehensive testing. We need to study the test data and determine how to best proceed to address the water quality issues. This presents an opportunity for the City to partner with experts from institutions such as Florida Gulf Coast University to help set up an action plan.

Our Fertilizer Ordinance and Storm Water Ordinance have to be effectively enforced with emphasis on compliance.

We need to improve and possibly re-engineer our swale system to filter storm water. Elevation of drainage pipes would allow standing water to percolate, slowing down rapid runoff.

We should require water retention areas in new construction sites. Older homes and redeveloped commercial properties could be encouraged to be retrofitted for retention. The City’s water drainage system needs re-evaluation.

7. What motivates you to take on the challenge of being a city councilor for four years?

For almost 50 years, I have committed my time, energy and financial support to community organizations and non-profit entities. Since retirement I have become much more active in Marco Island issues. My Alma Mater, the University of Notre Dame, has a motto and challenge to its alumni, “What would you fight for?” I feel that it is my duty and responsibility to help and dedicate my service, knowledge and energy to my community as much as I am able. It is the “right thing to do”.

8. Has present council been remiss in not discussing the county’s upcoming 1% sales tax referendum and its potential uses for Marco Island?

Yes. The 1% sales tax will impact all Marco Citizens and visitors. Unfortunately the present council has been remiss in educating the public as to the pros and cons of the sales tax and to the potential benefits it might or might not have to our community. No one likes or wants higher taxes; however, we should research this to see if there is a perceived benefit to the community that might meet with citizen approval.

9. Why should Marco Island residents vote for you instead of other candidates?

As a surgeon in the operating room, I led a team of medical personnel through intense, critical situations to obtain life-saving outcomes. When managing my patients in my office or in the hospital, I worked in co-ordination with other healthcare professionals for the health and well-being of my patients. This speaks to my ability to work with other councilors for the benefit of the community.

My patients and their families entrusted their lives to me because I was able to instill in them, the confidence and trust in my character and abilities. If I am elected and have the opportunity, I believe I can instill that same confidence and trust in the citizens of this community.

10. Please provide a biography.

I am a retired surgeon having practiced for 47 years in Michigan and Florida. I have been married to Linda Turner for 41 years, we have five children and 10 grandchildren. I am a proud graduate of the University of Notre Dame. I first came to Marco Island in 1960, we bought a condo in 1982, and our home in 2002. We are members of San Marco Catholic Church. I enjoy golf, tennis, boating, reading, travel and performing arts. For almost 50 years, I continue to volunteer for community and non-profit organizations.

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Sam Young

Sam Young

1. Describe your past contributions (volunteer work) for the Marco Island community.

Prior to moving to Naples in 1997, and Marco in 2005, I served on the Board of Directors for the Children’s Care Foundation, an Illinois based 501(c)3 nonprofit, see www.childrenscarefoundation.org. I applied for acceptance to the Marine Education Resource Program, which provides two separate training sections: Fisheries Management (Lab Work), and Fishery Regulations. Subsequently I took the role of Director, Fisheries Management for the Marco Sportfishing Club. In that role I sponsored advocacy on behalf of the club to FWC, the Gulf Council and NOAA Fisheries. I was asked by NOAA to accept a seat on the newly created Aquaculture Committee that also entailed weeks of training. Shortly thereafter, I was nominated to fill a vacant seat on the Marco Waterways Advisory Committee two years ago.

2. Do you feel the perceived dysfunction of the Marco Island City Council has prevented the hiring of a permanent city manager?

Council went through an extensive process to hire a City Manager that was vetted, perhaps not deeply enough by a well respected search firm. Unfortunately, this was a very short term relationship already well publicized, but not the fault of Council.

Without a City Manager, Council has had to deal with issues that should have been handled by city staff. but without a City Manager, Council meetings are bogged down.

In the October 4th Council meeting, a majority on Council committed to hiring a City Manager. Sadly, a disgruntled minority of Council ignored the will of our citizens, a true loss. If elected, hiring a professional City Manager is priority one. Marco Islanders demand it and deserve it.

3. What one proposal by the Ad-hoc Parking Committee would you champion?

This is a business issue, and business leaders must collaborate to develop solutions without using city funds. Our Island is only so large, and business expansion has created a parking issues for 4 months of the year, with few problems in the off season.

I would be in favor considering allowing parking in alleys, as long as adjacent homeowners are not harmed, and as long as there is no impediment of emergency vehicles.

I would also support extending parking hours at Veterans Community Park to midnight, allowing for additional parking within walking distance to our business establishments.

4. How will you help the public regain trust in local government after the recent scandals?

I would suggest that our citizens research Council candidates carefully and thoughtfully, and vote for three candidates who meet their expectations of trustworthiness, transparency, consistency and vision. We need to end the delay in finding a qualified, professional City Manager to LEAD city staff through guidance, written expectations and processes with accountability and transparency.

If elected, I will make certain we break the gridlock that is preventing the hiring of a professional City Manager.

5. What future capital expenditures do you foresee the council will have to address?

First, bring our Fire-Rescue station up to current standards and functionality. Second, adopt and develop Plan A or Plan B for Veterans Community Park as offered by planning consultant Kimley-Horn. Third, re-examine our Water and Sewer Department facilities.

6. In addition to testing, what is your proposal to protect Marco Island’s water quality?

Monthly testing will give trending analysis data annually and year over year. It will also quantifiably gauge the effectiveness of steps taken to reverse the nutrient overload that has our waters impaired by FDEP for 2017. We need to immediately take steps to migrate our 1,800-plus stormwater inlets to allow retention first, and conveyance second to reduce Nitrogen and other pollutants from pouring into our waterways through 480+ stormwater outlets. Next, we must adopt best practices in an updated fertilizer ordinance that is easily read, and understood for compliance by our homeowners, landscapers, and Code Enforcement. Add to this community education and involvement with innovative solutions for citizens to test water in their own canals. Consider removing grass from medians and away from seawalls where clippings only seem make their way into canals.

Ultimately, we need to have a long-term goal of eliminating stormwater outlets all-together.

7. What motivates you to take on the challenge of being a city councilor for four years?

I first found Marco in 1970, and moved here permanently in 2005. I watched my waterways steadily decline, and got involved, which lead to me interact with committees, city staff and Council. Things were not improving as fast, or at all, as I would expect. I spent my career with companies that demand results, and I expect no less from our City. Our city, just like a corporation, has a responsibility to deliver a return on investment. My success in business was predicated on teamwork. I would like to bring the city and Council into a culture of teamwork, collaboration and innovation that delivers tangible and quantifiable results to its citizens. I want to leave Marco better than I found it!

8. Has present council been remiss in not discussing the county’s upcoming 1% sales tax referendum and its potential uses for Marco Island?

It’s been brought up at Council several times, and city staff has already identified projects for it, if adopted. Citizens I speak with don’t want higher taxes. Whether it’s “only” a penny and carries a sunset clause, it’s still a tax, and that penny could morph into a nickel the next time. I feel it’s better to make sure we’re spending what we have with greater accountability and transparency of a demonstrated return on our tax dollars spent.

9. Why should Marco Island residents vote for you instead of other candidates?

Because I want the same things all voters want – results! I have demonstrated that I do the research to develop and propose solutions and quantify costs and savings. This city should be run like a business, and the voters are all stockholders. Elected officials have a duty to give them a return on their vote with defined value and an improved quality of life. Only leadership can drive efficiency, innovation and stepping outside the box to deliver solutions with a focus on continuous improvement over the continuum of their respective four-year term.

My business background and service on the Waterways Advisory Committee have given me the opportunity to work with and understand city staff, City Council, and other city committees. Understanding how our City works is a key attribute to my qualifications.

10. Please provide a biography.

Currently retired, and full-time resident of Marco with my wife Sheree since 2005. A Member of Marco Island’s Waterways Advisory Committee, Director of Fisheries for the Marco Sportfishing Club, a   graduate of the Marine Resource Education Program (MREP), Member of NOAA Fisheries and the Gulf of Maine’s Aquaculture Committee for the Gulf of Mexico, licensed Charter Captain, Scuba Diver and Spearfisherman, and started fishing in Marco waters since 1970.

Graduate of the University of Illinois, 35 years in healthcare industry serving in Sales Management, Marketing Management and Consulting roles, using LEAN Six Sigma techniques to create efficient, streamlined processes that delivered hard dollar savings and soft cost savings through greater efficiencies without adding additional staff to achieve a deliverable Return on Investment driven by hard dollar cost savings.

Served on the Board of Directors for the Children’s Care Foundation, a Chicago based non-profit organization.

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