To The Editor:
Mike Swords, the treasurer of the Lehigh Acres Economic Development Board, replied to our questions in The Citizen but his reply to our inquiry left our CAIT members seeing him as not answering the questions put before him.
Starting with last to first, his depiction of myself and page because we came from New York is far from the truth. I have not found even one item that I agree with Edd Weiner on. However coming from New York, I did learn on how to spot a scam being run and that piqued my interest on why a private group such as the Economic Development Board would want taxpayer money ($200,000) when you have a budgeted $128,000 payroll with the lion's share ($45,000) going to Edd Weiner.
In checking with some of the elected officials, they supported economic development of Lehigh Acres but did not endorse your particular organization and we find it puzzling that you give that impression.
We still do not know how many new businesses you recruited into Lehigh? The records show that the registered agent with the state for your group, the LACPP/ARB, Community Council, Lee County hospital volunteers - is Edd Weiner, with all these allegiances - will that cause a competitive conflict of interest for Edd Weiner?
If your group still wants taxpayer money, you will have to come clean and itemize your total of $29,000 in dues and who paid it. It is hard to believe that with your membership application of dues required from $1,000 to $25,000 - we are very interested in the names of who these people with all that money are.
You also requested input, so one of our CAIT members suggested that since Lee County already has an Economic Development Department headed by Mr. Moore, that you prevail upon the county to open a satellite office or visit at least one-day a week to meet with an advisory board in Lehigh and that would save a lot of taxpayers' money and send Edd Weiner out to look for a real job instead of living off the dole of taxpayers' money.
It also has been concluded by many of our members that due to the recognizable amount of your members and supporters plus your mention of incorporation coming to Lehigh again with your praise of Edd Weiner at the redistricting hearings - the ugly specter of incorporation is being pushed by your organization . Is that true?
This bazaar request for taxpayers' money to a private group to do with what they please is new to the Lehigh community and certainly raises suspicions of an ulterior motive at hand.
CAIT (Citizens Against Increased Taxes) agrees with the Lee County commissioners in rejecting your request for our money.
President of CAIT