This is the week for candidates to qualify for the August and November election ballots. The Supervisor of Elections office provides the necessary forms for all offices. Shockingly, none of the required paperwork requires and candidates Social Security number, Driver’s License, Voter’s Registration number or any other type of unique identifying official form of identification.
The State of Florida does not perform any type of background check on any candidate running for public office. The State expressly says, “Whether a candidate has a criminal record is left up to an opponent, the media and/or the electorate to determine.”
When I performed the task left up to me by the State of Florida, I was sued by my opponent, current County Commissioner Jess Santamaria. The lawsuit was filed in January of 2011 and was decided by a three day jury trial in April of 2012. The jury reached a verdict in my favor in about one hour. Santamaria has filed an appeal with the State of Florida Fourth District Court of Appeals.
It is astonishing that an employee must go through a background check to work for the County in the Clerk & Comptroller’s office but no background check is performed before a candidate is elected to run the County. That candidate can be elected to vote on the county budget but can’t work for the office that pays the bills of that budget without a background check. A person can’t be a volunteer at the South Florida fair without a background check but you can run to be a Board member of the fair.
The State of Florida provides no protection to any individual who performs the responsibility entrusted to him/her for determining if a candidate has a criminal record. This leaves the well intentioned voter at a completely vulnerable position of being the target of a lawsuit by the person being vetted. Twice so far I have asked the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners (BCC) to support an effort to rectify this exposure. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) provides background checks for firearms purchases and other official purposes. At a minimum, candidates could submit information to the FDLE and a level of candidates eligibility assurance to the voters could be obtained. So far there has been no response from any member of the BCC or any employee of the County.June 1, 2012 // 0 Comments
All posts prior to this post are for historical reference only. This web site was used for my 2010 campaign for Palm Beach County Commission District 6. Nothing on this site constituates a solicitaion for any future vote at this time. Please view anything on this site prior to this post as archive and legacy material.November 3, 2010 // 2 Comments
Thank you so much to everyone who supported me and my campaign!
When I qualified on June 16, 2010 as a candidate for County Commission, District 6, I knew I was fighting a major uphill battle without the backing of a political party or political allies. The task ahead of me was to convince a majority of voters to choose the best man for the job and to leave partisan politics behind. Our poltical system is deeply entrenched in a two party system and a third party or no party candidate is considered to be a fringe element.
My nature is to do what is best for the given situaton without regard for what the easy or quick fix solution might be. Personally, I strive for the best outcome and the best method for obtaining the desired result. Doing something the way it has always been done “just because” it has always been done that way is not my norm. The experiences others offer is one of the greatest learning tools in building a better mouse trap. Utilizing the successful methods and ideas of others and applying them to new situations, along with my own thoughts and abilities, has been a succesfull recipe for my accomplishments.
This campaign experience has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I now have a knowledge and insight into our political process that only a candidate could have. My experiences will stay with me and help to form my future. The education I have recieved from this venture is priceless and individual to me. There is no teacher like experience.
Now, four and one half months later, I have been fortunate to have gained many new friends and allies that I would never have had if I hadn’t chosen to try and make a difference in this community. The number of supporters I have been fortunate to have had helping in my campaign is truling a gratifying and moving blessing. Thank you so much to every individual and organization who supported me. Your efforts are greatly appreciated and will leave a lasting impression on me and help to shape my future course of action.
To everyone who placed their trust and faith in me, I thank you for your vote of confidence and would have served you fairly, responsibly and with great pride and respect for your needs. In all of our conversations and correspondences, my thoughts were pure and genuine and from the heart. I truly wanted the opportunity to do what I expressed. The future will determine just how quickly I will have that opportunity.
Thanks again. I won’t forget!
AndyNovember 1, 2010 // Comments Off
The Campaign of Andy Schaller for County Commission, District 6, will be holding a campaign victory party at Bru’s Room in Royal Palm Beach on election night, Novemeber 2, 2010. Join us for a victory celebration beginning at 8:00pm. Everyone is welcomed and encouraged to attend.November 1, 2010 // Comments Off
Thank you to everyone who has supported the Andy Schaller for County Commission District 6 Campaign! We are now in the last hours of the race and need your continued support. Please join us for our sign wave this afternoon at the intersection of Roayl Palm Beach Blvd. and Southern Blvd. at 4:00pm. If you can’t make it to this location, feel free to choose a location near you and wave a Schaller sign.
If you would like to help at the polling locations tomorrow, please call Laura at 561-386-4667 to schedule a time and place.
Thanks again!November 1, 2010 // Comments Off
Dear Commissioner Santamaria:
The above-captioned complaint, received in the office of the Commission on Ethics, is being transmitted to you pursuant to the requirements of Section 112.324, Florida Statutes. This office will forward all future correspondence in this matter to you at the above-listed mailing address unless otherwise notified of a change in your address. This transmittal is a routine administrative requirement which should not be construed as an approval, disapproval, or judgement of the complaint, either as to its terminology or merits.
Read the rest of the correspondence by clicking on the pictures below.October 31, 2010 // Comments Off
Jess Santamaria told the audience at the Wellington Chamber of Commerce candidate forum, “I donated $1000 to Hometown Democracy. So that’s a fact.”October 30, 2010 // Comments Off
From: JP Sasser
Sent: Fri 10/29/2010 8:56 AM
Subject: Santamaria and Amend 4
Several years ago I was quoted in the Palm Beach Post for making the statement that I thought Commissioner Jess Santamaria was ” an odd duck“. I was persecuted for that .This morning I learned in last night’s final debate it was revealed that Commissioner Santamaria donated $ 1000 to the Hometown Democracy group that is pushing for the passage of Amendment 4 !!! When pressed by his opponent Mr. Santamaria would not give a yes or no answer. I will give a quote this time – but it will not be printable!
If this amendment passes it will be disastrous for the entire State of Florida and kill small cities like Pahokee. My fellow elected officials in the Glades will not make a public stand for their cities. They don’t want to bite the hand that feeds them and are afraid of Mr. Santamaria. You should be afraid of Jess Santamaria – very afraid.October 29, 2010 // 1 Comment
According to the Florida Division of Elections, on July 26, 2010, Jess Santamaria’s company, Royal Industrial Int’l LTD Partnership, CONTRIBUTED $1,000.00 to Florida Hometown Democracy, the group responsible for Amendment 4.
During a recent candidate forum at Ibis Country Club, Santamaria said he was “neutral” on the issue. He later filabustered his time when asked for his positition on Amendment 4 during a candidate forum hosted by the League of Cities. The reality is Santamaria months earlier financially contributed to promote the efforts of passing the amendment that has been widely publicized as being detrimental to the state economy.
The following comes from www.Florida2010.org’s: website
What is Amendment 4? It’s bad news for Florida’s economy.
Amendment 4 was written by special interest lawyers, for special interest lawyers. If passed, top economists report that it will put more than 250,000 Floridians out of work while costing taxpayers more than $1 billion.
1—It is a Proven Failure. In 2006, the small Florida town of St. Pete Beach adopted a local version of Amendment 4. Since then, the town has seen higher property taxes, fewer jobs and endless litigation. When the voters of St. Pete Beach tried to improve their town’s failing economy at the ballot box, some of the same special interest lawyers who wrote Amendment 4 took the taxpayers to court. Now, nonstop lawsuits in St. Pete Beach have paralyzed the town’s economy and cost local taxpayers nearly $1 million. That’s one of the top reasons that every Editorial Board to weigh into the debate has opposed Amendment 4 (22 out of 22).
2—Amendment 4 Means Fewer Jobs: Amendment 4 will drive Florida’s record-high jobless rate even higher. A study by The Washington Economics Group reveals that Amendment 4 will cost Florida more than 267,000 jobs and take more than $12 billion out of the pockets of Florida’s working families.
3—Amendment 4 Will Raise Taxes: The nonpartisan, nonprofit Florida TaxWatch reports that Amendment 4 would have “devastating, lasting effects on Florida’s economy.” According to TaxWatch, Amendment 4 could cost Florida taxpayers more than $1 billion in litigation costs. While Amendment 4 might be a “stimulus package” for the special interest lawyers who wrote it, top economists, Florida’s Editorial Boards, both candidates for Governor, and an historic coalition of business, labor and civic groups all agree: Amendment 4 would be a job-killer for working Floridians.October 28, 2010 // Comments Off
Palm Beach County has many parks to enjoy. One park that we don’t have is a four wheeler park. The Mecca Farms property is sitting idle while we pay the bill for owning it. Why can’t we take a portion of that land and use it for a four wheeler park?
Listen to the Radio Spot “Mecca Farms”