FISA and the “MEMO” …Very Divided Opinions

I posted a very brief status update on Facebook yesterday, noting my sadness at the allegations in the, now famous, FISA Memo. ¬† This morning, “MANY” more comments than I anticipated waited. ¬†My friends are polarized and I’ve even received messages encouraging me to change to another television station for my news. ¬† Two issues strike me with both the memo and the way my friends or public generally see the issue. ¬† The memo contains serious allegations and, if true, shows a serious flaw in our justice system. ¬†If you think about it, the memo is concerning, whether it is entirely factual or not. ¬†The cover letter included in the PDF linked below is actually quite helpful. ¬† Understanding the information used as a basis for the memo is classified and understanding any POTUS would be forced to choose to release or declassify is worth considering.

Fernandina Beach and Nassau County political leaders are subject to Sunshine Law.  The higher you go, the less sunshine, hence the need to formally release a memo discussing information only viewed by a committee.   I would encourage everyone to read the memo and cover letter before forming an opinion.  If FISA warrants were issued and renewed based on flawed information, we should be concerned.  If the memo has a partisan motivation, then we should also be concerned.  Personally, I just want the truth and want to know if our system is being used politically.    Thoughts?

Read-the-FISA-memo copy

Core Issue…FISA Warrants allegedly obtained based on falsified partisan research.

Old and New at the Waterfront

The waterfront in Fernandina has undergone changes, since my childhood.  Years ago, I remember playing underneath the old wood docks or fishing with hand lines.   Simpler days and a vanishing waterfront is overshadowed by change.  Smaller cruise ships, a change in port ownership and Front Street in sore need of repair, mean more change is on the horizon.

Cruise Ships and Shrimpers

We can guide change, but the Fernandina today is a world away from the Fernandina I knew 45 years ago. ¬†Unlike many friends, I chose to stay on the island as an adult and think we’re just evolving. ¬† Fernandina is a far more interesting place to live today. ¬†Consider car shows, fishing tournaments, numerous festivals, races, restaurant week and world class dining, world class resorts, restored historic buildings, fantastic parks, the greenway, jobs from diverse industry and cleaner beaches.


Meeting Space for Chamber Members

I took a few minutes to visit the new Chamber of Commerce location or, I should say, their newly remodeled location.  The design, I believe by Jose Miranda, feels collaborative and feels usable.  Tables, meeting spaces, coffee, private rooms and a very functional arrangement, make this one of the nicest spaces I can imagine.  With membership, you can reserve space or just drop in to use desk, copier or meet a client.

Stop in to take a look…you’ll be shocked and pleasantly surprised by the change.


Throwback Thursday

Pizza in the air at Moon River, the old docks, one great day at the beach, Fort Clinch brickwork, fake Dora and a blurry shot of downtown, all bring back memories.¬† Most of these came from earlier blog posts 15 years ago.¬† ¬†Remembering how much the island is the same and how much it changed…perspective or important?

When did you make it to the island and what seemed important at the time?

City Hall Market Value?

This is a recent shot of the changed landscape behind City Hall. ¬†Whether you love change or not, uses change and adjacent properties can benefit. ¬†City Hall is nearing the end of it’s life and efficiency. ¬†It began as a fire station years ago, but transitioned bays for fire engines into the current commission chamber. ¬† Seeing and anticipating the changes, will we have an opportunity to sell at a profit, consolidate to one location and finally see most city services in one location, while preserving a historic structure?



A Day on the Island….

Politicians who actually care, Centre Street with so much variety you’ll spend weeks trying every restaurant, musicians without compare, sleepy pelicans on a working dock, a short distance to Jacksonville International and, finally, fantastic beaches are key to the island’s allure.

No Longer a Dead End…Alachua Opening is Key to Downtown Traffic Relief, Marina, Front Street and CRA

After, literally, years of effort, final approval to open Alachua Street is here.   Alachua

Waterfront views and notice depth toward the Port of Fernandina
Waterfront views and notice depth toward the Port of Fernandina

doesn’t look like much now, but considering the impact of an opening and the plans dependant upon this added access, this is the single key to a working CRA, development of the surrounding property and management of traffic during events on Centre.¬† It also allows for an added rationale to stabilize the waterfront and change Front Street to a “one way” street, leading traffic away from the port at the Centre/Front intersection.


Thinking about the waterfront and marina, the recent purchase of an added area north of the current marina, took an opening of Alachua into consideration and adds even more logic to the change.¬† Eventually, the marina will move and expand northward, moving larger slips away from the disaster of a mud flat and negligent marina placement years ago….a cost we’ve been covering with tax dollars.