Yesterday, another former commissioner, Michelle Spence Jones, was vindicated and a jury found her not guilty of bribery charges.
The state and others would have us believe that Jones solicited $25,000 from a real estate developer in return for her vote on changing South east 2nd Street to Brickell Avenue, which would have meant a boost in property value for the developer’s project. The state insisted that the $25,000 contribution went to benefit Jones and not a legitimate charity. Spence Jones herself insisting she did nothing wrong from the start. It would turn out that the commission did not have the authority to make such a name change and never voted on the issue.
Ummmmm, I am not the sharpest tack in the box, but wouldn’t a seasoned real estate developer know or at the very least have researched the commission’s ability to handle the request he was supposedly paying for. So why would he still pay and reach out to others to pay Jones, for a vote on a transaction that she would have no power to control. Looks like the State was trying to screw justice and railroad, Ms. Jones because shouldn’t someone have asked this information a while ago and that would have saved the poor citizens of Miami, who just recalled their Mayor and another commissioner for wasting their money. It might be time to get your petitions back out Miami, and look toward the State Attorney’s office and then join the rest of us in Florida in trying to get rid of Rick “Jim Crow” Scott.
After a couple of months of witnesses, a few hundred thousand in tax dollars, the damage to Jones reputation, and not to mention the damage to the State Attorney’s Office reputation a jury took about 90 minutes to deliberate and come back with a “Not Guilty” verdict. Vindicating Spence Jones and sending a great big “F YOU” to all her doubters and naysayers. I personally would like to invite everyone reading this to join me in a moment of silence for the death of the career of Richard Scruggs, Former State Attorney. We don’t have funds to waste here in Florida, the money we wasted in this trial and holding re-elections and special elections could have been better spent on our education budget. Anyone willing to blatantly waste our time and money is not fit to be in their position and should not be allowed to remain in such. We as citizens need to speak up and tell our government to curtail its spending. We waste money so willfully and stupidly and yet cut the programs and budgets that benefit us the most.
One way to stop such waste is by streamlining the election system by holding all elections on the same day, instead of staggering them…that would increase voter turnout and save the counties and the state money. We could also look into having fewer school boards across the state, why do we need a school board in each county; one “Superior School Board of the State of Florida” would suffice. Why are we paying thousands to individuals on the School Boards and they are not helping our kids. That money would be better spent on our teachers, books, and fine arts programs. Maybe then our education system will run better and produce better and smarter citizens. Not just ones who can’t fill out applications or even vote because those items are not in FCAT format. Speaking of FCAT, the data clearly shows that the standardized testing is not working. Our children, our teachers, and our schools are not benefitting from it and we are losing generations of kids because of it. Unless, that is the product you are trying to achieve?
So, it’s time to act up and speak out and let our governments know that we are tired of this wasteful spending, we are fed up with selective prosecutions, and we are tired of our kids being left behind because of FCAT. Something has to change and if they are not part of the solution they are the problem and like a cancer we will search you out and cut you off!