If the so-called "Hometown Democracy" idea had been law during the 2006 election cycle, the proposed constitutional amendment would have rendered Floridians vulnerable to the whims of our State's most extreme special interests. That's why last month we voted unanimously on the Casselberry City Commission to adopt a resolution urging citizens to vote "no" should the amendment appear on the Fall 2008 ballot.
After taking office a year ago, my first commitment to Casselberry was to clean up our streets and close down the pornography venues - "adult entertainment outlets" - that once preyed upon our small town. Today, we have successfully confronted and restricted Casselberry's once-formidable pornography sector. But I worry if Hometown Democracy becomes law, wealthy smut-peddlers could bankroll campaigns to defeat citizen-supported land use plan changes designed to restrict their activities. They need that advantage because we are winning.
Given what Hometown Democracy would provide to this particular industry, I am not surprised one of its top campaign donors is Joseph Redner, owner of the Mons Venus strip club in Tampa and other notorious businesses. He and his pornographer colleagues would benefit greatly from the amendment, so Mr. Redner contributed $25,000 to their cause. More dirty money will surely follow his lead.
I urge voters across Florida to see Hometown Democracy for what it really is: bad for hometowns, and worse for democracy.
Jon Miller, Casselberry City Commissioner
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