Pensacola, Florida
Wednesday January 16th 2019


Winners & Losers 8/13/15

Matt Gaetz
The Gaetz family demonstrated last week that misstatements can be corrected without melodrama. When his son, Rep. Matt Gaetz, missed a speaking engagement, Sen. Don Gaetz told reporters that his son had come down with highly contagious whooping cough. He said Matt had caught the disease from Congressman Carlos Curbelo. However, the father spoke too soon. On Friday, Matt Gaetz tweeted the test results showed he did not have the disease: “Whooping Cough tests are negative. Special thx 2 Okaloosa Health Dept. Many apologies @RepCurbelo. Quarantine lifted!”

Pensacola Bayfront Stadium
The home of the Pensacola Blue Wahoos earned the number four spot in PETA’s list of the Top Five Vegetarian-Friendly Minor League Ballparks. The number one spot in the minors goes to the New Britain Rock Cats’ New Britain Stadium, followed by the Tulsa Drillers’ ONEOK Field in second place and the Biloxi Shuckers’ MGM Park in third. Rounding out the top five is the Erie SeaWolves’ Jerry Uht Park.

Ray Sansom
The state has paid $600,000 in legal fees to settle a lawsuit by former House Speaker Ray Sansom, who was once one of the most-powerful political figures in Florida. Last February, a judge ruled in favor of Sansom, who sought more than $800,000 to pay for his successful defense against corruption charges. The state appealed the ruling, leading to the settlement.

Rick Scott
The state of Florida will pay $700,000 to settle a public-records dispute brought by Tallahassee attorney Steven Andrews, who discovered that Scott and two former staff members were using private email accounts to communicate. A California judge ordered in April for Google to turn over correspondence through computer IP addresses from the Gmail accounts of Scott and his staff. The money will come from four agencies—$445,000 from the Department of Environmental Protection, $120,000 from the governor’s office, $75,000 from the attorney general’s office and $60,000 from the Department of State.

Corrine Brown
Congresswoman Corrine Brown (D-Jacksonville) went to federal court hoping the judges will intervene and order the Florida Legislature to not redraw her district that meanders from Jacksonville to Orlando. She argued that reconfiguring the district so that it will run from Duval County to just west of Tallahassee reduces African-Americans’ chance to elect a candidate of their choice. Supporters of the new boundaries pointed out the district’s Democratic primary would be controlled by black voters and that a Democrat is likely to win the general election.

Eric Olson and Tamara Fountain
It’s an understatement to say Mayor Hayward’s team, City Administrator Eric Olson and Chief Operations Officer Tamara Fountain, did not have a good first week of August. The first step to get out of a hole is to stop digging. It looks like they finally dropped their shovels.