SOC PRESS CONFERENCE SPEECH

June 23, 2006

SOC Fairchild Here is the speech by Charles Fairchild at the 6/22 Save Our City press conference held on the Pensacla City Hall steps. This is an OCR copy so it's not perfect, but we have not altered any of the text. At the bottom of the main blog – under pages – are scans of the memos Fairchild mentions. Enjoy!

SAVE OUR CITY P.O. Box 464, Pensacola, FL 32591

Visit our website at: www.SaveOurCityPAC.org

BLAB show every Sunday at 5:30Weekly meetings on Tuesdays @ 6:00 at Bayview Park Senior Center

Press Conference Called by Save Our City -PAC Save Our City PAC Chairman Charles Fairchild announced today there is no longer any doubt who was and still is pulling the Pensacola City Council's strings regarding its decision to approve the Maritime Project to be placed on the Trillium property.

He has called a press conference for Thursday evening, June 22, 2006 at 5:45 P.M. on the steps of Pensacola City Hall to provide the media and the public with the documents to support these findings. Please contact Charles Fairchild at 221-3839 or visit our website at http://www.saveOurCityPAC.org for additional information.

Detail of the Press Conference: Over the past year and one half we have become increasingly concerned about the seemingly irrational direction the Trillium Maritime project has been taking from the illogical nearly unanimous support of the Pensacola City Council to the operations of the "public" meetings to the unusual delays for no apparent reason in the Trillium 2 referendum vote.

During our review of documents that we received through a lawful Public Records Request, we discovered the following emails. We believe we have a duty and an obligation to share their contents with our fellow citizens of the City of Pensacola. We would like to read excerpts from several emails and we will provide the entire emails to the press and the public.

Pg. 1- The first is an email on 11-2-04 from Mike Thiessen, Baseball consultant for the Pensacola Pelicans, to Tom Bonfield, Pensacola City Manager where Theissen states "Is it worth floating the Trillium site along with the Maritime Museum and a Conf. Center? Push this project as part of the re-emergence of Pensacola" "We can always go to the Escambia Treatment Site". Bonfield responds the same day, "Both are certainly options and each will have its own set of unique challenges".

Pg. 3- This is followed by an Email from Bob Hart, Attorney for the Community Maritime Park Associates on 1-6-05 where he summarizes a hour long phone call in which Dick Barker, City Finance Director, John Fleming, City Attorney and Tom Bonfield participated and discussed ways of using CRA funds to finance the project. The next thing we know the Trillium site is the site for the project, the council has had private meetings with the promoters and approval is given for the project.

Pg. 5- The major problem with this is in August 2003 the Pensacola City Council adopted its Strategic Plan 2003-2009 and set as one of it strategic goals the developing of a process for involving the community in the Trillium/Bruce Beach Site direction. It is apparent that the City Manager changed the goals of the strategic plan without council direction, therefore rendering mute the stated goal of the Council in the August 03 planning session and calling into question who is really running the City.

Pg. 6- The next interesting email is from Ellis Bullock, owner of E. W. Bullock Associates who is under contract with the City of Pensacola as their public relations and advertising consultant. Ellis Bullock's firm was also working secretly with the promoters of the Trillium Baseball project to push their plan on the council and the people of Pensacola. In his Tuesday, January 18, 2005 email, sent minutes after council's conceptual approval of the project, Bullock clearly indicates that he is part of the studer team and exhorts them to "keep the pressure" on the council to do their project and to do it "without RFP's". It has been the position of Save Our City PAC that the Pensacola City Council did not follow its own policy when they refused to issue an open and honest Request for Proposals on the Trillium site and we have now confirmed that this was indeed the plan of _the promoters from the beginning.

Pg. 8- The next issue surfaced from an email on 1-19-05 from Miller Caldwell, architect for the project and a member of the Community Maritime Park Associates (CMPA) team. He states, "If Gindroz does not understand at a minimum the wishes of the principal players, he will not know how to steer the effort toward the result the group wants toachieve. "

Pg. 7- This was followed by an email on 1-19-05 from Dr. JohnCavanaugh, President of the University of West Florida and one of the principals in which Dr. Cavanaugh states, "I agree with Miller's points. We need to ensure that Ray (Gindroz) is thoroughly conversant with our basic requirements -from there he can do a good job". This was followed by an email on 1-21-05 by Quint studer, the principal member of the CMPA project, in which he states, "I just spoke with Ray Gindroz . He understands what needs to be on the land. These statements by the major proponents of the project should make it abundantly clear that their intention, from the very beginning, was to have their consultant manipulate the so called "public" input process.

Pg. 9- The next part of the equation surfaced in another email from Raad Cawthorn of E. W. Bullock Associates on January 19, 2005, the day after conceptual approval of the project. The email was sent to the CMPA principals and discusses the City's role in the project. It states: "He(Bonfield) did not see Council action last night as calling for City staff todo anything in that regard (public input).

Interestingly, he (Bonfield) penned the motion (to conceptually approve the project) for Nobles and deliberately excluded any public input factor. "He states on in the same email, "I see Council's opting out of the public input process as a plus. His comments on page 10 are most telling, "Staff will look at this proposal, but Bonfield has a strong sense of where this is going. They will ask questions, etc. but I do not expect they will come out with strong inquiries even about some aspects of the project I know some staff members have chilly feet about.

City Hall has maintained they did their due diligence concerning the project. These comments clearly show that the City had no intention of undergoing a thorough due diligence procedure and that the entire process was turned over to the CMPA to conduct. The question must now be asked as to who was supposed to be representing the public's interests in the process?

Pg. 10- The last and most telling part of the equation are the additional comment by Mr. Cawthon in that same January 19,2005 email. He states: "Right now we have at least five votes in our Docket (Fogg, Wiggins, Nobles, DeSorbo and Wu)" (Emphasis by the author) Mr. Cawthon could have used words like support, favor, prefer or any other number of words or phrases that would indicate council support yet he deliberately chose the words "in our pocket" to describe the level of control that CMPA had over the five named council members.

Again, We ask exactly who was representing the citizens of Pensacola in this matter? We believe the time has come to take a hard look at exactly who is pushing this project and exactly what role the City Staff and City Council has had and continues to play in the manipulation of the public in this matter .

We anticipate that more telling information will be forthcoming in the near future which will reveal this project was orchestrated from the beginning to deprive the Citizens of their waterfront property so that a baseball stadium and a UWF waterfront campus could be built on the Trillium property.

Any Questions?

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12 Responses to “SOC PRESS CONFERENCE SPEECH”

  1. Anon. Says:

    Field of Schemes

    So Quint Stupid and a few of his cronies get rich off this thing. What’s wrong with that?

  2. routzen Says:

    Read the lease and development agreements. Then tell me how Studer is getting rich of this plan.

    If Jesus Christ performed the miracle of the Loaves and Fishes in Pensacola, some would complain the fish wasn’t fried.

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Well, if you think the CMP is akin to the miracle of loaves & fishes, please carry on. You are deluded beyond help.

  4. Jim McClellan Says:

    To the anonymous contributor above: Why don’t you do what Rick suggests and try to make a case based on facts?

  5. Jim McClellan Says:

    Throughout this process, I’ve heard and read lots of information about the park from people on both sides. As I’ve asked for more information, here’s what I’ve realized.

    The park opponents unleash fiery rhetoric — like the “getting rich” comments above — but then fail to offer any substantiation. The supporters, on the other hand, are happy to provide documented evidence of the safeguards the plan provides to taxpayers.

    Likewise, I keep hearing that there was no public participation. Well, it turns out that’s not quite true either. It just wasn’t done exactly like the opponents wanted.

    I could go on, but it strikes me that Rick’s comments are on the mark. There are people here, as in every community, who would rather shout down everyone else’s ideas than offer any of their own.

    Count me on the side of people with vision — and the courage to bring that vision to life.

  6. JB 2004 Says:

    I appreciate this forum and detailed notes of the press confrence. Much more detailed then this mornings snipits in the PNJ rag.

    Regardless of the pros and cons of this park plan, it is very disturbing to see EBIII involvement in this from an employee’s standpoint in bringing Studer and the City together.

    This in my opionion makes the referendum vote more important than ever.

    Routsen the problems with the leases BTW is that they are secured by a company who relys on income form one individual and if something were to happen to him physically or emotionally and he could not contiune. The ballfield lease is to an entity that is subsidised.

  7. routzen Says:

    JB:
    You’re concerns about what if something happens to Quint Studer are valid – but are they enough to stop the project?

    The CMP plan isn’t perfect. I don’t like all the elements either and there are risks. However, the plan will work. Such developments already have in other communities.

    The benefits far outweigh the negatives. We should focus on how to make CMP succeed instead of picking it apart.

  8. Bill McBride Says:

    I welcome the vote in September. The benefits of the plan so far outweigh the negatives that the voters will vote the plan in by about the same margin as the LOST passed – 2 to 1. We owe it to the youth of Pensacola, those like the Young Professionals group who want to stay and work in an energetic and growing city, this opportunity. Anyone who doesn’t understand the overall benefits of the CMP doesn’t understand synergism and the multiplier effect of an increased economic base.

  9. Yaddagirl Says:

    The problem is much bigger than we like to admit. Once again, Pensacola is more interested in personally sorting out a bag of seeds than in laying down sod. We complain that Pensacola has no vision but only because we chew up and spit out ideas until they no longer resemble anything that could be considered “visionary”.

  10. Anonymous Says:

    If the CMP passes, we will yet again see why the south is so screwed up. The south repeatedly disregards its transportation and education infrastructures in favor of the path of least resistance.

    You people try to sound enlightened with your fad management terms like “synergism” and “multiplier effect”, but without places for smart people and good roads, “y’all” are just another backwater southern town.

    Social Darwinism at work in Florida’s poorest county.

  11. Kim Says:

    Pensacola’s downtown is in desperate need of improvement and revenue. We have so much beautiful, waterfront property that is going to waste. The Maritime Park, from what I have read, is going to be much more than just a baseball field, as some have suggested. I am a former resident of the Washington D.C. area, and the park sounds like it will be a miniature version of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, which is steps away from the Baltimore Oriole’s baseball stadium. Inner Harbor has worked financial miracles for Baltimore.

    I realize that there may be political issues at hand, and that people are afraid of taxes being raised. It is my understanding that the monies for this project are already there, and that we will not be further taxed for it. If nobody has any better ideas for the site, why not go with a seemingly well-thought out plan? The focus should be on the fact that it would likely improve the downtown area in many regards, not the hypothetical politics behind it. This fight could drag on for years, with Pensacola continuing to be the losers because prolonging a project for the site will ultimately mean a huge loss of revenue for our city.

  12. Peter Says:

    I would like a few questions answered:
    1) Who gets the use of the land for $1.00 as has been suggested.
    2) Who funds the development?
    3) What is the projected return on the investment?
    4) Will the development be able to withsatand a class 4 hurricane?
    5) For those who are opposed and say they can develop it better, what is their plan? Grassland, a Picnic area for residents?

    Finally a suggestion. All of the beaches in Maui are public land and there are no private beaches. When the Park is developed we should pass an ordinance similar to that to allow all people the opportunity to enjoy the advantages of the Florida waterfront.

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