Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida and Europe, especially the UK and Sweden. In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura. Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Pictured in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A; September 2008 photo by me, South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Unconstitutional Power Grab: Hallandale Beach Considers Taxing Political Candidates for Free Speech

Below, an email sent Tuesday afternoon to
Broward County Comm. Sue Gunzburger's
office, that was
cc'd to the Commissioner.

I will be at both the Hallandale Beach and
Hollywood City
Commission meetings
Wednesday morning and afternoon
so perhaps I'll see you there.

Just remember,
wheels ARE in motion.
November 3rd, 2009

Dear X:

Thanks for taking the time to speak to me
this afternoon on a matter I feel is of great
public interest and concern.

Here's the link to the issue I just spoke to you
about on the telephone that will becoming
before the Hallandale Beach City Commission
Wednesday morning at 10 a.m.,
agenda item 7A.


City Manager's Office Staff Report:

Supporting Documents

Completely contrary to both the U.S.
and Florida constitution, as well as past
Supreme Court rulings that political
contributions and paid political advertising
are Free Speech, the City of Hallandale
Beach proposes to create a law completely
out of thin-air that gives them the power
and right to charge political candidates
or issue/referendum groups, a tax or fee
of $200 -down from $500!- for exercising
their constitutional right to post either
political or advocacy signs within the
city limits of Hallandale Beach.

If, having paid all legally-required filing fees,
you are then required to pay a tax or fee
for simply exercising a legally-protected
constitutional right like political speech,
it's not really Free Speech, is it?

In my phone conversation with you,
I explained how preposterous this is
for all sorts of reasons, and I will revisit
those same points and others later this
evening on my blog, reminding you that
I've previously written about this issue,
which the South Florida press has
completely ignored.

At the first reading of this on October 21st,
the City Manager's office removed the
previous version of this proposal that,
equally absurdly and unconstitutionally,
gave the unelected City Manager the right
to place political advertising on city-controlled
property if they chose to, despite the fact
that it's the citizens and taxpayers of
Hallandale Beach whom the land in question
belongs to, not the unelected City Manager,
who in Mike Good's case, doesn't even
live in Hallandale Beach.

I'm sure that they are a perfectly fine employee,
but just for the record, the name of the person
in the Broward Supervisor of Election's
office, Operations Dept. I spoke to earlier,
who didn't seem to quite grasp the larger
principle involved that I was trying to share
with them, via a head's-up -even though
I know quite well that Broward County
doesn't have a regulatory element in this
per se- before placing my call to you at
Comm. Gunzburger's office, is XXX,
who at least has their name and email
address on the Elections webpage.

Why Dr. Snipes and her office's Legal
don't have their official email
address listed somewhere on their county
I couldn't begin to tell you, since that is
whom I wanted to contact about this matter
in the first place, but couldn't.

It strikes me that if it's good enough for
the County Administrator and the County
Commissioners to have their email addresses
on the county's website, it really ought to be
good enough for the people running the
county's Elections office as well.

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