GUEST EDITORIAL: The Real Story Behind the Resistance to Deep Well Wastewater Disposal

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As a member of Dump the Pumps and worrying that the Cudjoe Regional Wastewater System [CRWS] is deeply flawed, I have been privy to documents and people associated with the group and some people you might want to call “whistleblowers” who are FKAA employees or contractors. Here’s some of what I have gleaned from these sources:

~~Harry Powel

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The Cudjoe Regional Wastewater treatment plant currently under construction at the Cudjoe landfill has been challenged for its intended use of shallow injection wells for effluent disposal​. There are a couple of property owner associations that fund the Dig Deep Cudjoe group that was formed to fight for deep well disposal of the partially treated wastewater​. Rumor suggests that they may believe that FKAA is looking for a way to say to the County, “The science says we need a deep well.” Hence their optimism arising from FKAA’s offer to do a baseline study and 5 year monitoring near the Cudjoe treatment plant. That way ​FKAA can save face and begin deep well design and construction as if they are being environmentally responsible. Ha!

The motives and agenda of FKAA may be very different than what the POAs imagine. There may be still more trickery and deceit involved, as many have come to expect from FKAA.​ Consider the following…​ Continue reading

Southernmost Car Club Holds Its Monthly SHOW & SHINE CAR SHOW

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The Florida Keys Southernmost Car Club (FKSCC) holds its monthly SHOW & SHINE- CAR SHOW this Sunday, November 16th, Noon to 4pm in the evening when its cool.This event is for the lovers of classic, custom, and street rod automobiles of all years and makes. Fords, Chevys, trucks, sports cars, and chrome loaded motorcycles. If it cool and on wheels it will be here.

This fun evening event  at  at our great location at the Sugarloaf Lodge, MM17, on Sugarloaf Key. Prizes, 50/50,  and cold beverages are available for purchase at the Tiki Bar. Bring the kids to enjoy these beautiful relics of the auto world. Vote for the Peoples Choice and that classic will take home a beautiful Plaque! This is a FREE event.

Club members are seeking new members for a full schedule of Club events. For more information contact Dick Moody 305- 942-1758.

November is National Home Care Month

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Home health care is highly skilled and professional health care, but it provides so much more than what patients & families normally receive from our traditional health care system. Our professional staff meet patients and their caregivers in their home. There is an intimacy and connection that rarely occurs in other settings. Home health care seeks to support someone in maintaining their independence, achieve recovery, and/or optimal functioning from sudden or chronic disease. Home health care can also provide compassionate support for someone facing a life-threatening illness. It strives to alleviate fear and suffering, in whatever forms that may be, in order to free the patient and their loved ones to do the things they want or need to do during the time they have left. And we are there to provide support and assistance to patients and their caregivers.  If you or someone you love is facing a limited life expectancy or recovering from surgery, injury or illness, ask your physician about a home health referral. We will work with your physician to develop an individualized plan of care to promote optimal functioning and well-being. Continue reading

New Education Specialist to pilot outreach program for Key West Art & Historical Society

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A young girl visit Key West’s Custom House, part of the Key West Art and Historical Society. Credit: Todd Feit

This month, Key West Art & Historical Society will welcome a new staff member to manage their educational programming and outreach for their Custom House Museum, Fort East Martello Museum and The Lighthouse & Keepers Quarters.

With a Masters degree in Museum Studies from the University of Massachusetts and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Arts from the University of Oklahoma, Kristi Robinson’s first job will be to strengthen the relationship between the Society, Monroe County schools and other local arts organizations, redefining the organization’s role as a leader in arts and history education throughout the region.  Specifically, she plans to accomplish this through educational outreach into the classrooms, leading group tours to the museums, curriculum development and special events at the Custom House Museum’s soon to be unveiled Research & Learning Center. Continue reading

Money is Available for a Top Notch Sewer System / Enough is Enough…

We are Monroe County. We are the people. Many of us have served the visitors, tourists and winter residents one way or another over the years. Without us there is nothing. We pay the taxes, we bring in the money. We are the reason the money is available for a top notch Central Sewer System. The money is not for other projects. How dare these arrogant people assume that a dozen or so should benefit and the rest of us pay the price as they break the law, break peoples spirits and destroy the environment and everything we have worked so hard for. It is time to get the people who don’t care about what we want out of here. It is time to get the people working on their own agenda out of here. Those of you who have payed attention have a good idea what is going on. Remember this when you vote. Enough is enough…………………….

Susan Marburger,

Summerland Key

Emergency Helo Fare to Miami: $66,000 or Free…

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“First I said I didn’t want to take the helo,” says Ellen Engleson, who had arrived at Lower Keys Medical Center with a broken femur, “I was concerned about the cost.”   She was right.  After being heliported to Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Ellen received a bill for $ 59,000 from LifeNet, a for-profit medical emergency helicopter service.

She has since learned that the hospital in Key West could have made the choice to send her for free, in the County’s Trauma Star medical transport helicopter. Continue reading

Monthly SHOW & SHINE This Saturday October 19th

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The Florida Keys Southernmost Car Club (FKSCC) holds its monthly SHOW & SHINE- CAR SHOW this Saturday, October, 19th. Noon to 4pm in the evening when its cool. This event is for the lovers of classic, custom, and street rod automobiles of all years and makes. Fords, Chevys, trucks, sports cars, and chrome loaded motorcycles. If it cool and on wheels it will be here.

This fun evening event  at  at our great location at the Sugarloaf Lodge, MM17, on Sugarloaf Key. Prizes, 50/50 Free Ice Cream and cold beverages are available for purchase at the Tiki Bar. Bring the kids to enjoy these beautiful relics of the auto world. Vote for the Peoples Choice and that classic will take home a beautiful Plaque! This is a FREE event.

Club members are seeking new members for a full schedule of Club events. For more information contact Dick Moody 305- 942-1758.

GUEST COMMENTARY: Grinder Pump Attacks Get Personal

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In a recent posting to the BigPineKey.com “Coconut Telegraph” an anonymous writer, using a fake e-mail, initiated a personal attack against a number of the activists opposed to the extensive use of grinder pumps in the Cudjoe Regional System.  The posting was lifted from a five page diatribe that Randy Bell, the Grinder Pump salesman, wrote earlier this year and sent to the FKAA.  The posting claimed Dump the Pumps was wasting money, that Walt Drabinski, who initiated the original lawsuits and has been very vocal had no engineering degree, was incompetent and that his economic and engineering analysis were lies. The writer also initiated a really low personal attack against a select few members of Dump the Pumps.  Walt Drabinski responds as follows: Continue reading

United Way President Margie Smith Resigns To Join Family Investment Firm

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MARGIE SMITH, UNITED WAY PRESIDENT

Margie Smith, President of United Way of the Florida Keys since January 2010, will leave the agency at the end of this year to join her husband’s investment management firm in Islamorada.

Smith said she is excited about her new position but sad to leave a job that has been so much a part of her for almost five years. “As President of United Way I’ve had the unique opportunity to see a detailed picture of who we are as a county, and to interact with so many public service-minded individuals,” she said. “What we have here is special.  I’ve never felt so profoundly connected to a community as I have here in the Keys.” Continue reading

MOSQUITO CONTROL: In Response to FKMC Chairman Stephen Smith’s Editorial

The editorial by Stephen Smith, Commissioner, Chairman, Florida Keys Mosquito Control, was a fascinating read, and it was a perfect example of why we so desperately need term limits for all elected officials.   Mr. Smith, who has been a FKMC board member for 18 years missed the mark. He seems to forget that FKMCB has not only a duty to protect us from mosquitos, but it also is a steward of our tax dollars.

First, his mention of his 18 years on the Board was intended to lend gravitas to his opinion. Apparently Mr. Smith wants you to forget the corruption and the waste that plagued the Board during the first 15 years of his tenure. He would have you forget the egregious salaries and benefits collected by the Board during his tenure.  He would have you forget or ignore the criminality of certain staff members during his tenure and his full throated defense of at least one of those staff members. Continue reading