Editor’s note: The Observer invited Fernandina Beach City Commission candidates to write an essay about anything on their minds as they seek a seat on the commission. This is the latest one, submitted yesterday.
By Staci McMonagle
Perhaps more than any other time in history, for all levels of government, it is more important than ever to VOTE! As your “public servant-LEADER” representing the collective voice for our Fernandina Beach community, I am asking for your vote as candidate for Seat 5 of the City Commission. I want to be the bridge between the public and the governing body of the city—representing YOU!
First and foremost my big-picture vision for Fernandina Beach is to preserve, with wisdom, the unique and historic DNA that delights both locals and tourists alike! Most importantly, my directive is to protect and preserve our barrier island’s natural resources that are so vital! Like a three-legged stool, each dependent upon the other, our tree canopy, dunes and wetlands MUST be a priority! Under this umbrella, I will promote avenues to efficiently and effectively enforce city code and report violations.
Second, the ever growing, bloated budget MUST be addressed! Why has the budget increased every year and ultimately almost doubled over the last 8 years? Are your taxes being allocated to best serve the needs of the people? Does the condition of the infrastructure reflect the tax dollars spent? I will ask these hard accountability questions on your behalf!
In closing, as a community, leaders must be proactive rather than reactive. We must plan and manage our resources, both fiscally and environmentally. This mindset is what will ensure the preservation of our beloved community!
I watched the debate organized by the Chamber of Commerce. A vibrant business community is needed in any community, however, this candidate’s message of “get of of the way” of business wouldn’t serve our community well. Other than sound bites, no specific plans were shared with the audience