Cabinet Caves to Big Sugar: Taxes Will Eventually Go Up on Citizens

Governor Rick Scott and the other three cabinet members (all Republicans) gave sugar companies approval to the long-term lease of critical Everglades lands despite opposition from environmentalists. Sugar has been rewarded for large contributions to both parties over the years. On this site, I have repeatedly editorialized against the industry only to see comments from our readers saying Sugar isn’t that bad because they give money to Democrats. I am embarrassed that some progressives seem to feel serial polluters are okay if they give money to Democrats.

With the Everglades ecosystem under assault the water supply, ecosystem and economy of southern Florida covering an area with almost eight million people could be untenable within a few decades. Yet Florida’s leading elected officials continue to kick the can down the road irresponsibly and cow tow to the wishes of an industry that not only is responsible for over 75% of the current pollution in the Everglades, but is only on the hook to pay for less than a quarter of the cleanup.

Sugar industry backers including highly paid lobbyist/consultants (many of whom are Democrats) have penetrated the political system and left environmentalists and common sense behind. The industry has successfully exaggerated the impact they have on Florida’s economy and the state’s job market thanks to the skillful public relations campaign waged by these savvy political insiders.

The cabinet’s decision today paves the way for less accountability for polluters as sugar refused to agree to stricter requirements regarding the discharge of pollutants. The loser today was Florida’s citizens as the clean up costs for the Everglades will escalate thanks to the continued non-accountability policy towards sugar and necessity to maintain a clean supply of drinking water for southern Florida.

Perhaps long term when taxes on citizens go up to clean up the Everglades, we can call it the “Scott Tax.”

12 thoughts on “Cabinet Caves to Big Sugar: Taxes Will Eventually Go Up on Citizens

  1. So the state gives carte blanche to the sugar industry to rape the Everglades.

    We residents/taxpayers are already paying the bill to clean up this beautiful area, and it looks like it’s not going to end anytime soon.

  2. Thanks to some of the corrupt Democrats in South Florida for enabling the sugar industry. It’s not all on Scott by the way but on the Democrats also.

  3. It is not just Rick Scott. When taxes go up blame some of the corrupt South Florida Demos who have time and time again carried the sugar industry’s water and baggage. They are as much to blame.

  4. It is fantastic that you are focusing on this. Democrats complicit in this honestly. This chair’s race is no different. Alan Clendenin is tied to sugar. Just look at his backers and those who funded his political committee. Rod Smith was controlled by sugar, as was Karen Thurman.

  5. When sugar spent big and bought off politicians in 1996 to defeat the polluter pays amendment we knew it was going to be uphill going forward. Sugar had the upper hand and those politicians who had bravely taken them on previously were now scared to make an issue of this.

    The Florida Forever law was supposed to fix things but never did. The SFWMD has been dominated by GOP partisans who have fixed things in favor of sugar. Bush appointed people to the SFWMD that would take sugar’s side in any dispute. Crist appointed some decent people but his appointees have all either been replaced or decided to start playing ball with Scott’s hard core pro polluter agenda.

  6. And Mrs. Tant was a lobbyist for a company that suppressed thousands of black voters, as well as a contributor to TONS of Republicans. So your point is?

  7. How does this impact taxes? It makes no sense what you are saying? Also this article is a direct interjection into the FDP Chairs Race.

    It is important readers of this article and site understand why this article was written. Another comment yesterday said the following which rings true here also.

    This attack on sugar is well timed to benefit Tant and the Randolph’s. Michael I was not aware of Kartik’s congratulatory tweet to Susannah Randolph but that makes it all very clear. Alan Grayson should be ashamed he would hire someone so disreputable to run his district office. We will be working to get him a strong primary challenge. Susannah Randolph is nuts. Seriously, no one takes her stupid mad rants with any credibility. Her husband? He is as bad if not worse. So he said “uterus” on the floor of the House. Who give a flying you know what!

    That anonymous blog which attacked Clendenin as a tool of sugar was a very clever way of Susannah Randolph working to get Kartik Krishnaiyer on her side. It was obvious that despite the anonymity of such a piece, KK was uncomfortable and started attacking Clendenin and praising Tant on this site. Their is a direct, unmistakable correlation.

    As for sugar they are strong Democrats who unlike other lobbies who consistently give to only Republicans. Rod Smith and Karen Thurman helped us with sugar. Alan Clendenin will keep this relationship going to raise money. Kartik Krishnaiyer was involved in a 2002 attempt to run a Republican, Mary Barley in the Democratic Primary for Ag Commissioner. Barley, a lifelong Republican tied directly to Charlie Crist was the President of Save our Everglades. Krishnaiyer was on the payroll of the campaign and attacked various Democratic elected officials including our very own Bill Nelson as stooges of big sugar. He took Barley around to the DECs and said to people her support for Charlie Crist and other Republicans did not matter because he too would support a Republican who was good on the Everglades. Krishnaiyer is NOT a loyal Democrat. Ask him if he has ever voted for Charlie Crist. Ask him! He’s lying if he says no. He liked Crist because of a single issue, the Everglades. I am telling you he is a zealot on this issue. Just a few weeks ago he started a petition to prevent Alligator hunting in the Everglades.

    What a freaking lunatic tree hugger, or dare I say swamp lover. Do not take advice from someone who puts trees and bugs above electing Democrats.

  8. It directly effects tax rates as the state is required to clean up the Everglades by long standing court order (remember Lawton Chiles storming into court and saying to the judge the state is wrong we are guilty?) PLUS we have to keep south Florida’s drinking water and economy sustainable and that cannot be done without a sustainable Everglades.

    Since polluters are not being forced to pay a fair share of the costs of the cleanup, taxpayers pay more. State taxpayers AND Federal taxpayers. So the whole country is losing out thanks to Rick Scott, the cabinet and the sugar aligned Democrats.

  9. This is a very valid and good article but again we have seen from other comments Krishnaiyer’s timing is not a coincidence. He is being directed by Susannah Randolph to post these things. What Susannah and Scott Randloph have done in Orange County undermines Democracy.

  10. Why does every thread become about the Randolph’s, Clendenin or Tant? Maybe you should consider closing comments on anything until AFTER the Lake Mary meeting.

  11. Pingback: Lawsuit Filed Regarding Sugar Lease Extenisons « The Political Hurricane – Florida Political Blog.

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