Pensacola, Florida
Monday October 20th 2014

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Feeling Left Out and Right Upset


No one invited him to the party. And he’s none too happy about it.
“That’s another example of why I’m leaving the TDC,” said Pensacola City Councilman Larry Johnson.
The Tourist Development Council met Tuesday. Johnson — who sits on the board as a city council-appointee — wasn’t there.
“No one informed me,” Johnson said Tuesday night.
The city councilman recently made known his intent to resign from the board. But Johnson intends to sit on the TDC until his successor is chosen by the city council.
“Therefore, I’m still on the TDC,” he said.
Johnson sited the slight as another example of what he view’s as a problematic tourism council. The city councilman’s ire with the TDC appeared to come to a boil in September when it’s chairman, Denis McKinnon, refused to step down amid a controversy regarding how some recent business has been handled; the state of Florida is currently investigating the issue, ascertaining if any council business was discussed among members out of public view.
McKinnon said Wednesday that he had no idea what Johnson was talking about.
“How could he be left out?” he asked, explaining that the meeting had been announced at the group’s previous meeting and also in an email sent to all members, including Johnson.
McKinnon said he was aware of Johnson’s resignation, but that it was not discussed at Tuesday’s meeting. The TDC, the chairman said, mostly dealt with how best to handle nearly a million dollars in unexpected revenue. Much of the money was designated for various financial obligations already on the books, but more than $300,000 will be up for grabs soon; the Council will be accepting applications for the tourism funds.