Monday, September 12, 2011

Millage Rates, Tax Increases that Aren't, and Assessed Values

In a local cage liner named "Happenings", a writer wrote an article called "Good Day!" I found a few flaws in the article and decided to write a few things against to straghten it out.

September 7, 2011: 6:32 a.m. For those of you who are subjected to the local pooper paper, you may have read rupester's article starting on page four of this month's rag. To which I must respond publicly, as rupester wrote publicly. I wrote a letter in response to the owner of the pooper paper, but I seriously doubt it will appear. So, I publish it here for the benefit of all:


"You're publishing Rupe's rantings against Infantini where it concerns money and figures? Really? Consider:

Trudie Infantini:

Trudie's Bio

"[E]arned her Bachelor's in Business Administration with an emphasis in Accounting from Florida International University. Trudie became a Certified Public Accountant and earned a Master's degree in Accounting from Florida Atlantic University.

"Within a year of moving to Brevard County, Trudie became a licensed financial planner. She worked for various Wall Street brokerage firms for five years and has even earned her Principal's license, which enabled her to run her own firm. She has maintained her membership in both the Florida Institute of CPAs and the American Institute of CPAs since 1983.

"In 2001, Trudie began work at Space Coast Credit Union as an Internal Audit Manager (Chief Audit Executive). In this role she was responsible for preparing and carrying out the annual audit plan, risk assessment, and coordinating efforts for the annual audit. She was also tasked with comparing budgeted to actual financial statements, analyzing tax laws and regulations to verify that SCCU was in compliance with such laws.

"Trudie worked as an Internal Auditor for the Brevard County Clerk of Courts, where she has seen first hand the waste and inefficiency in many County departments, and has allowed her the opportunity to analyze and question agenda items presented to the Board of County Commissioners. Currently, Trudie is a Professor of Accounting at Florida Institute of Technology.

Maureen Rupe:

Rupe's old campaign site with "Education and Experience.

"My education was over 40 years ago, and the education system at that time cannot be compared to the present day United Kingdom Education System. I attended an innovative school that concentrated on the technical aspects of various subjects. All students were required to pass a rigorous scholarship test to be allowed to attend this school. The Kettering Central Technical School was highly regarded and respected. Latin and French were taught routinely, along with many advanced courses, not included in schools today.

"At that time, Britain started education earlier in childhood (I started at 3) and 15 was the age to leave school nationwide, unless you attended grammar school or a technical school, as did I. The Kettering school has since closed and the education system reorganized to what it is today. All this is documented and can be verified.

"(NOTE: To see more on Technical Schools in England, you may wish to visit The History of Education in England.)

"Considering the facts, I think I'd take a CPA's word on financial things more than a person who left school at 15 and wrote on her "What qualifies me to run for County Commissioner?" page prior to reworking it, (initial page retrieved April 14, 2008), "When I was 17 and stubbornly refused to go to college" (her previous words for her educational background). Remember, "college" in England (where she was born, raised and schooled) is the equivalent to our 11th and 12th grades. According to (her own resume) she received no further formal education.

"Bachelor's Degree, Master's Degree, licensed financial planner, CPA and internal auditor or someone who left technical school at 15? Hmmm....

"Linda McKinney"
I have searched the BOCC website and cannot find anything that says there was a meeting on August 11, 2011. I have found one for August 2nd and 16th, but not August 11th. Therefore I can neither confirm nor deny the alleged words of Mary Bolin.

However, I would ask you to consider the following:
Andy Anderson, NOT A CPA: he has an A.A., in what it doesn't state.
Mary Bolin, NOT A CPA: she has a B.A. in Education. (Difficult info to find: it's not on her BOCC website Bio.)
Chuck Nelson, NOT A CPA: his degree is (Shock! Surprise!) Phys. Ed.!
Robin Fisher, NOT A CPA: he's a Public Relations major.

So, considering the studies and backgrounds of the other four Commissioners, I think it's reasonable to follow Commissioner Infantini's lead - especially when it comes to money matters -- and go with her recommendations. CPA v rupester and the four Commies? Yeah. Bachelor's Degree, Master's Degree, licensed financial planner, CPA and internal auditor Infantini every time!

September 7, 2022: 4:00 p.m. NOTE: I wrote to the County asking for a copy of the minutes of the August 11, 2011 meeting rupester quotes in her article. The response is below:

"Good morning Ms. McKinney,

"I was forwarded your request for the minutes of the August 11, 2011 Board of County Commissioners meeting. There was no Board meeting held August 11, 2011, however there were three regular meetings in the month of August. If there is particular subject or item you are interested in, we would be happy to research that for you.

"All completed minutes of the Board of County Commissioners meetings are posted on the Brevard County Government webpage, as well as the Clerk of Courts webpage.

"If you need anything further, feel free to contact me.

"Best regards,

"Tammy Etheridge
"Clerk to the Board"

So, I sent a request to the pooper paper's owner/publisher/editor that he print a correction in next month's pooper paper. We'll see if he actually does anything about it.

Update: I received the meeting notes from the County for a meeting that happened AUGUST 9, 2011. Contrary to what rupester asserts in her article, Infantini is not accused of the mentioned "sins". Read the meeting notes here. Notice that when Comm. Bolin is speaking, she does NOT mention Comm. Infantini at all. She never mentions any names. She just states that there is misinformation out there. rupester assigning words to Bolin in order to make Infantini look as bad as possible. This, to me, is NOT reporting. rupester is creating a misimpression and is trying to influence people to her way of thinking (as if she actually thinks?).

I have written to the pooper paper's owner and reminded him of rupester's history of proven plagiarism, possible copyright infringement, her assigning words to Bolin and errors in dates and facts. I have asked that from this date forward he label rupester's writings as "OPINION" instead of allowing them to stand as reporting. I have taken journalism and I know the difference between a fact, rhetoric and a hit piece. rupester's every mention of Comm. Infantini is a hit piece filled with rhetoric. I think it's time the pooper paper be held accountable. If you agree with me, write to Happenings and tell them it's time their writer be held accountable to the rules of journalism or have her writing labeled "OPINION". It's time.


That didn't do the job well enough, I thought. So I did a
whole page on the same subject. I hope you like the truth because there it is in cold, hard facts.

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