I remember hearing about Charles Slert, a man for change. I took someone’s word that he would make a diffference around this town. He was running against Martha McClure. I put his campaign sign on our front lawn. I heard he lost that election by 20 votes. Sometime after losing the election, I went in to speak with him about running for City Council. He balked. But, eventually, I twisted his arm. He ran and won. After spending 35 months on the City Council with Charles Slert, I can tell you that he voted to approve spending or encumbering you to the tune of over $6 million that I voted against. Here’s just a partial listing:
Merit bonuses. Yep…. he voted for it.
Cost of living increases. Yep…. he voted for it.
An extra $895,000 to Stover Engineering for the Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP). Yep…..he voted for it.
$35,000 designer error on WWTP. Yep…..he voted for it.
$660,000 extra (not included in the loan, but spent from the sewer fund) to do fix-up, last minute touches
and purchases for furniture and boiler for WWTP for the grand opening back in Oct 2010.. Yep…..he voted for it.
When I mentioned saving $30,000 a year by eliminating the toxic industrial waste (FSA for short; hydrofluosilicic acid for long) put into our water, he couldn’t see the merit in that. (It’s alarming that so many dentists, dental hygenists, and local doctors don’t even know about FSA? Then there’s the Republican and Democratic central parties that didn’t do their homework either. But, they did take $1,000 each to support keeping this poison in our water. Plus all the other elected officials in this town. Just ask them if they are aware of the dangers of FSA. Don’t take my word for it.)
Sewer rate increases. Yep…..he voted for it.
When I made a motion to have a moratorium on any more sewer rate increases for at least one year, it failed for lack of support by my fellow council members, including Charles Slert. We’re elected by the people. It’s the people we serve. It’s my experience based on being on the city council for the last 3 years that government and politicians no longer listen to and serve the people they represent.
In June, 2011, the entire City Council was served with Constructive Notices regarding the health hazards of hydroflusolicic acid, (FSA) the chemical put into our water that contains a small percentage of fluorine. To the best of my knowledge, the City Council has the power to prevent health hazards from affecting our public that we serve. However, Mayor. Slert will tell you that it is up to the vote of the people to remove this from their water.
However, this is what you don’t know. Back when the local newspaper was called the "Crescent American" in their July 24, 1968…. that’s right 1968 issue…. the headline WATER FLUORIDATION. To sum up, shenanigans on the city council are not new. April 12, 1960, local voters rejected fluoridation by a greater than 2-1 majority. "Spokesman for the proposed fluoridation at that time was also a dentist, Dr Dale S. Rupert. Although the voters in the 1960 election voted down fluoridation, they elected Rupert to a seat on the council."
"Upon a motion by Dr. Robert E. Mouritsen, the City Council voted unanimously Monday night to request a permit from the State Department of Public Health to raise up the fluoride content of the city water supply to 1 part per million."
Further to quote the last paragraph of the article, "No one appeared at the Monday night council meeting to oppose fluoridation. HOWEVER, THERE WAS NO ADVANCE WORD THAT THE MATTER WOULD BE BROUGHT UP AT THE MEETING."
I don’t know about the laws, rules and regulations back in the late ’60’s, but I can tell you that today IF an item is not on the agenda it’s not supposed to be discussed and voted on. This is plain sneaky. Probably illegal as all get out. But that folks, is how fluoride got into our water. A couple of years later, it went to a vote. By then, enough propaganda was spread about the "safety and benefits" of "fluoride." Just keep in mind that FSA is neither safe nor effective. Matter of fact, it’s been proven to be harmful to nearly every segment of the population from infant to senior. Back the in ’60’s every reputable health and medical association in the country supported fluoridation. TODAY, many of those same organizations have had to remove their support. For example, The National Kidney Foundation had to withdraw their support because FSA affects kidney sufferers.
During the last two years, I have seen merchants from the Business Improvement District (BID) come before our council. While Our Mayor clambers for people to attend our meetings to give them input, what kind of message is he giving when the public shows up. The merchants tell the council want they want. They want the BID disestablished. And they are ignored.
Increasing sewer rates on a public that is already groaning under the burden of expenses being too high, income being too lean is just confirmation of what I and others told the City back in when they didn’t listen about the impending recession.
Then there’s the Code of Ethics. This means that there’s one code for me and another one for my fellow council members. Councilmember Slert, in concert with 3 other council members decided that I violated numerous provisions of the Code of Ethics. And, that was reason enough to CENSURE me the same night I presented evidence that corruption was taking place at our Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP). How honest is that? Isn’t that a violation of the Code of Ethics by the very people trying to enforce it on me? Isn’t that duplicity?
How in the world can someone in this city shine a spotlight on all the corruption going on and have it twisted around to it seem like that person is the problem? Easy when you have the local newspaper and radio station parroting each other. Let’s ask again, who is in charge of the news and how do they decide what to print? Do they make a big deal about corruption? Nope. They make a big deal about how much "Westfall is costing the city." Instead of doing the job they were elected to do, which includes investigating and uncovering corruption, they twist the facts and make it seem like Westfall is the one costing the city. Clever isn’t it. But who is ultimately paying for all of this? You are, that’s who! By keeping you in the dark and ignorant about what is actually happening, they get to increase spending and raise rates and you get to feel the squeeze even more in your budget.
How many of you remember Slert stating meeting after meeting that the WWTP was ON TIME and UNDER BUDGET? Wrong again. Neither on time nor under budget. Mty fellow council members voted to spend every penny right up to the maximum loan amount. What is that amount? $43.8 million dollars. Plus, there’s still the issue of how much expansion was actually done on the WWTP. The city claims 11.8% Others claim as high as 50%. Who pays for expansion? It’s supposed to be paid for out of hook-up fees. Instead, ratepayers are on the hook 100% for the entire amount of the $43.8 million loan.
Charles Slert has so many wonderful qualities. He’s seeminglly intelligent. He can dissect a problem and explain it better than almost anyone I know. In my opinion, he just looks good as a Mayor. I’m just so terribly disenchanted and disillusioned with him and his voting record.
As a kid, we would chant, LIAR, LIAR, PANTS ON FIRE. Today it is not politically correct to call someone a liar. We say, "They are less than truthful."
Do you think Mayor Slert been less than truthful with you? Has your financial situation improved since he took office, or has it gotten worse? How much of that is he responsible for?
Finally, if you helped vote him into office, you can help vote him out of office. There is no need for a special election. This can go on the June ballot. The current recall of Charles Slert is endorsed by www.crescentcitytimes.com.