Broward County School Board Member Ann Murray was surrounded yesterday by sycophants who showered her with campaign checks.
It wasn't in her home district in the Hollywood area where she lives but in Okeechobee, the little town on the big lake up north. It was at a business called Royal Concrete Concepts, which currently has contracts worth at least $15 million to build storage facilities and other buildings for the School Board.
The company showed its appreciation for Murray's support with a shindig and plenty of campaign checks (we'll tally the number later). Make no mistake: When you're getting treated like a queen, it's hard not to succumb to the machine.
Murray, a longtime School Board employee elected last year, was supposed to provide a stable voice to the board, a voice of reason, largely unaffected by lobbyists (she defeated Rick Saltrick, who was backed by lobbyists Neil Sterling and Barbara Miller). But a lot of good folks in Hollywood are wondering if she slipped over to the dark side.
Her response to activist and civic leader Pete Brewer's query about overbuilding and near-bankruptcy at the board indicates that her body has indeed been snatched by the corrupt powers that be at the district. Brewer actually sent her a copy of this blog post.
Sent: Wednesday, August 12, 2009 9:32 PM
Subject: Re: Fw: Broward School Board Digs Itself Deeper Hole
Thanks Pete, but unfortunately once your on the Board you inherit everything, past and present. the good and the bad...
The issue with Mr. Notter,,, he also inherited alot of mismanagement of finances from Dr. Till who was the sitting superintendent when all this spending was happening. Since Notter became superintendent he has gotten a handle on the wild spending, but again. unfortunately the perfect storm had already hit the system.......Yes we are deep in debt and it will be a good five years before we see any relieve if even then with the present economy in this country........
The issue between the BTU and Notter is just the dramatics of union negotiations, actually Pat Santermaro and Mr. Notter have been friendly for several years, and continue to be friends in spite of the newspaper articles you read.
Again thanks, but I did run knowing exactly the situation inside the District........Stay tuned,
There are numerous issues here, not just the fact that Murray writes like a fourth-grader. And it comes right from the machine's playbook:
1. She blames Till, the old scapegoat theory.
2. She falsely defends those currently in power, namely James Notter. If Notter got "a handle on the wild spending," it was only to shift it into overdrive. He kept the frenzy going full-tilt. But don't ask for accountability from him or these board members.
3. She blames the economy, a "perfect storm," rather than the irresponsible staff and board that approved every bit of the waste and mismanagement and, yes, corruption as it went along.
That's just a few. Brewer, a man with great integrity who once believed Murray might be different, had just one comment to make after he read Murray's response: "They all fall in line!"
After the jump, the text for the RCC fundraiser.
Royal Concrete Concepts
cordially invites you to attend a
fund-raising event for
Candidate for Re-Election to the
Broward Public School Board - District 1
RCC production facilities in Okeechobee.
3800 NW 16th Blvd.
Okeechobee, FL 34972
August 27th, 2009
Refreshments and snacks will be served
Please RSVP to Michelle Swanson at (561) 689-5395
Maximum contribution $500
Please make checks payable to "Campaign A ccount Ann Murray"
Disclaimer for all political invitations:
The purchase of a ticket for, or a contribution to the campaign fundraiser is a contribution to the campaign of Ann Murray. Paid Political Advertisement paid for in kind by Royal Concrete Concepts, 7240 7th Place N., West Palm Beach, FL 33411. Approved by Ann Murray, Broward School Board Member - District 1.