Well, I AM crazy, they’re just not going to catch me, again.
I sat for an hour with Curtis Franklin, the Program Director of the Pasco Restore Act Committee. This is the committee that judged and awarded Restore Act Funds to the City of Port Richey for improvements to be made to the Port Richey Waterfront.
Here’s a synopsis of the plan:
We’ve talked about this SO much…I wanted to dip back in, because there is no one with clearer insight into the Restore Act process, and the timeline of the approval of the Port Richey plan that won the $667,000 award. He confirms some things that we’ve been saying all along:
- That the plan as approved IS adaptable, and that there can be ramps in Waterfront Park, the Mayor just doesn’t want them.
- That the City of Port Richey composed, presented, and approved the plan that was acted upon by the Restore Act Committee…That there is evidence that meetings were held, in Port Richey, so the public could have a say…And that the City of Port Richey was completely aware of what was in the plan, since they hired a grant writing firm to complete it, and present it.
- That the city WILL lose the funds (and, in fact, the Mayor intends to let the money go back to the Restore Act Committee for redistribution) if they do not follow the approved plan.
- That the Restore Act would have to start over, to an extent, revisiting old submitted projects, and perhaps soliciting new ones, to redistribute the money, FURTHER delaying improvements in Port Richey, and thus delaying the Harbors Revitilization Plan.
- That the Restore Act Committee has seen NO evidence of the “new plan” the Mayor claims to have for a boat ramp upriver from the Cotee Bridge on U.S.19.
Now…I am going to do something very uncomfortable. I am going to tell you that either the Mayor is woefully under informed about the entire process of acquiring and utilizing these funds, or he is lying about why the city is not proceeding with the plan. Neither condition is good.
Voters in Port Richey: You will be sending a powerful message in the spring, at election time…Either you support the Mayor in his rather selfish and petulant stand, or you see the value in helping ALL of West Pasco County to flourish, by revitalizing the corridor, starting with Port Richey.
My dad used to say, “If you ain’t helping, at least get out of the way!”